We caught up with vocalist Brendan Stevens of The Strive to discuss their new single "Keep Dreaming", summer plans and more!

Describe your sound and what makes The Strive unique.

First and foremost, we're a rock band. We all grew up listening to music with an emphasis on guitars, drums, and meaningful lyrics, and I think it definitely shows in our sound. There are some pop elements to our music as well, however I think combining rock and pop has seperated us from bands of the same genre. We like to write songs that get stuck inside our listeners' heads, as well as being technical and different enough to show our instrumentalists' craftmanship.

How did The Strive get started as a band?

Our drummer Nick and our lead guitarist Luke met through YouTube when they were in high school. Those two started to jam, and at the time, I (Brendan) was working with a buddy of mine, Kyle Ward, on an acoustic project. Kyle was also working on a solo record and needed somebody to track drums for him. He posted a status on Facebook, Nick saw it, they jammed, and Nick asked Kyle if he would like to work together on a new project. Kyle brought me along, and from there we recorded our first demo, "Dreaming of You". With Kyle and I sharing lead vocals, we invited our rhythm guitarist, Greg, to join as well as our bassist, Michael. This all happened in the winter of 2010. We eventually had musical differences with Kyle, and we parted ways with him in the early spring of 2011. The line-up of myself on vocals, Nick Stacy on drums, Luke Davis on lead guitar, Greg Dowd on rhythm guitar, and Michael Zenk on bass has remained the same since.

You guys just streamed your song “Keep Dreaming” online. What is the influence behind the song?

"Keep Dreaming" is an idea that came to me while listening to the instrumental that my guys had recorded and sent over to me. More or less, "Keep Dreaming" is about never being able to break that boundary of friendship with the person you're in love with. I guess some people would call that the "friend zone" but I think the idea is deeper than that. It's about reassuring yourself that maybe one day it will work out. I think the desperation of wanting that person to feel the same way that you feel about them really shows in the song. It's also about being vulnerable, and telling this person that you care so much about, that even if they love somebody else, they will always be on your mind and a part of you.

Are you guys working on a new album that “Keep Dreaming” will be apart of?

Yes! We have our first full length record in the works right now.

You guys gave a teaser on twitter that you are playing a big summer show. Any more details on that that you can tell us?

All we can say is that it's going to be our first hometown show back in Kansas City in about a year, and that we're really excited to play with the band we're playing with.

Will there be a summer tour along with that?

There will be a lot of sporadic touring this summer. We have some plans in the works right now, so be on the lookout for dates in your town.

If you guys could play or collaborate on a song with any band, who would it be and why?

For me, I'd love to collborate with Cartel. They've been a huge influence on our band and I think it'd  be a lot of fun to track vocals with Will Pugh. I think for all of us collectively, collaborating with Paramore would be a dream come true. Paramore is sort of the reason that Nick and Luke met through their covers of Paramore songs on YouTube. It would be crazy, for sure.

Anything else you would like to add?

You can keep up with us on Twitter by following us at @wearethestrive as well as Instagram at @wearethestrive
Our Facebook page is and our official website where you can order merch at
Thanks for the interview, City Lights Coverage!