Interview – Animal Years

Everyone should keep their eye out for this fairly new Brooklyn-based band, Animal Years. Their indie rock sound is full of positive melodies and danceable tunes influenced by a wide range of artists including Young The Giant and Kings of Leon. Vocalist Mike McFadden first worked on his solo career before moving up to Brooklyn. There he joined Anthony Spinnato and Anthony Saladino under the new title, Animal Years. They’re playing the Brooklyn Bowl tonight with Robert Randolph and The Family Band so I sent over some fill in the blanks to learn more about them and their music.


A few words to describe us are….Fun, weird, hirsute, ticklish.

The pickiest eater in the band is….We’ll all eat just about anything. We try to eat well on the road but somehow always get sidetracked by fast food, which usually ends with us falling into a deep dark pit of despair and self-loathing. Luckily we have each other to rally around.

The most OCD member is….Probably Mike.

Before the band we were employed as….Mike and Anthony Spinnato still have full-time jobs. Mike drives his truck delivering auto parts and Spinnato manages the Cutting Room recording studio in Manhattan. Saladino used to do sales for a tech startup and now does freelance writing and video production.

For fun we like to….Write “Desperate Housewives” fan fiction.

We’re currently listening to….A lot of Howard Stern. We pretty much only listen to talk radio when we’re on the road. As for music we’re really diggin’ that new Bruno Mars and Mark Ronson tune “Uptown Funk.” This band Graveyard Lovers we played with at CMJ, they’re really killer. Oh and we covered a Hozier song at one of our shows before anyone really knew who he was so we felt pretty cool about that.

We find inspiration from….Real life experiences: relationships with friends and families, getting our hearts broken, getting the shit kicked out of us by New York City.

The first song we wrote together was…. “Bennie and the Jets”

One thing we want you to remember while listening to our music is….Everyone’s got their own shit to deal with so be nice to the people around you.

If we play another band’s music it’s….Got to be something we can make our own. For a while we used to cover songs and play them straight like they are on the record but the best covers are when a band takes the song and totally turns it into something new. Recently we’ve covered “The Wire” by HAIM and Florence and the Machine’s “Shake It Out” and completely re-arranged them. The last few shows we’ve been playing a cover from the 90s that gets the crowd singing along so we’re ready to get huge with it at BK Bowl on Friday and then retire it and move on to the next one.

Our craziest or most memorable gig was….Getting an encore for our first Brooklyn Bowl gig was pretty surreal. That’s a venue we’ve all been wanting to play since we started in Brooklyn so we were beyond psyched.

Something odd we want our fans to know about us is….We hate each other. No, I’m just kidding, we actually really enjoy being around one another, which is probably more surprising than if we hated each other considering how much we’re together. We’re a pretty young band though so there’s probably only so much time before we start throwing punches and suing one another.

Our favorite words to live by are….”You only have one life to live, make it count.”

In the next six months you should expect….A new album of really awesome, fun songs that we can’t wait to share with everyone. Plus a couple music videos.


– Victoria

(Photos courtesy of Shervin Lainez)

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