Refection on the Past: An Interview with Stacked Like Pancakes

by - March 31, 2022

Photo courtesy of Megan Milkowski

After a relatively quiet few years, Stacked Like Pancakes is back with their single, “So Close Yet So Far”.

The song channels the ska roots that initially influenced the band’s sound, and was written at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic as an anthem for normalcy.

“The pandemic has allowed for a lot of time for reflection on the past, and some of those reflections included thinking about why I started Stacked Like Pancakes to begin with,” frontman Kellen McKay said. “It was because of my love for ska and specifically bands like Reel Big Fish. The difference now is that while I purposefully make creative references to other artists and inspirations like Green Day and Blink-182, I feel comfortable kind of molding it all together to become what I hope is perceived as an inherently 'Stacked Like Pancakes' song. And that's something that can only develop over time.”

“So Close Yet So Far” has received incredible feedback thus far and has seen a higher number of Spotify listens in a short amount of time compared to any song they have released in the past. It is a momentum that they hope to keep up with as they release another single later in 2022 and a full-length album in 2023.

The song was produced by accomplished engineer Eric Taft at his Maryland studio, The Buzzlounge. The opportunity to work with Taft gave the band powerful insight into how they want their creative sessions to transpire moving forward.

“Eric. Freaking. Taft. Phenomenal and brilliant musician and producer,” McKay said. “Seriously can't say enough about him. He makes the creative and production process an amazing and cohesive experience for everyone involved.”

When McKay first started the band, his knowledge of writing music, especially for horns, was practically non-existent. Terminology was a foreign language to him, so he would sing the lines for the horns and have musicians play it back on their instruments for him.

“I've been so lucky to have worked with so many incredibly talented musicians who can bring my creative ideas to life on their instruments,” he said.

Nowadays, he is much more familiar with notation software, music theory and digital audio workstations that make the process much easier to idealize a song before presenting it to the group. His songwriting, however, has remained the same since the beginning of the band. His “acoustic noodling” can turn into a traditional ska song or pop-punk jam or something in between.

Stacked Like Pancakes are more than ready to share music with the world once again. After years without a sense of normalcy, they have channeled their version of normal into another classic ska/punk song that reminds their fans of just how much they were missed.

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