Fame, Grief, Sexual Exploration Inspired Walk the Moon's New Album

Walk the Moon
Mike Windle/AMA2015/Getty Images for dcp

Walk the Moon photographed backstage at the 2015 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on Nov. 22, 2015 in Los Angeles.

For Cincinnati-based alt-rockers Walk the Moon, the years since their 2014 breakout hit "Shut Up and Dance" have been filled with career success, tour travel, and personal development -- both good and bad. 

Speaking with Entertainment Weekly about the members' turbulent last few years, frontman Nicholas Petricca reflected on how he and the other band members have grown since the release of their sophomore LP, Talking Is Hard. 

Though Walk the Moon in its current incarnation has been around since 2011, it wasn't until their smash hit "Shut Up and Dance" rocketed them to worldwide recognition, expanding the band's fanbase from an "awesome group of hardcore fans who know us and know the album" to a "new huge crowd of people who mostly just knew the song." Petricca sees the band's new LP -- due out later this year -- as an "awesome opportunity to reestablish ourselves and let people know we’re a rock & roll band."

Their success and worldwide tour came to a screeching halt in 2016 when Petricca's father was quickly dying of Alzheimer's. At the same time, bandmate Kevin [Ray] was getting married and Petricca, following his father's death, was exploring his spirituality and his sexuality that he'd never before confronted. 

As a result, the band's new music reflects an amalgamation of each of the members' personal development since Talking Is Hard. Petricca said the new album "is really raw lyrically" and centered around "looking into the unknown and realizing that it could all go to shit or it could be the best thing in your life."

Petricca contended that making the album wasn't easy for any of the members, but they've never been more excited about their music. "I think it’s because we dug deeper and we’ve been more vulnerable here than we have been on any other record," he said. "We made it through to the other side."