Jared Pearson/Courtesy of the Artist

Although he found early success as a rapper, Travis Mills always liked the idea of being in a band. He grew up admiring blink-182, MxPx, and The Used. Early groups didn't work out for various reasons, and he found solo success with tracks like "Diemonds" and "Young & Stupid."

In drummer Nick Gross, Mills found a musical partner with the drive to make their band a success. Together as girlfriends, the duo has embraced the music that shaped their youth. They enlisted producer John Feldmann, the Dr. Dre of pop punk, to complete their sound. Over two albums and an EP, they've created anthems that sound like artifacts of the early 2000s, rather than recreations of TRL rock.

Released this week, "shut & kiss me" sounds like it could have been on the Road Trip soundtrack. It's the first new music for the band since the EP Over My Dead Body last May.

The partnership has not only allowed them to make music they love; it's given them an opportunity to play and record with some of their favorite artists. This summer, girlfriends will join Avril Lavigne on her North American tour.

Watch Mills and Gross talk to Jordan Edwards about their experience with girlfriends, touring with Lavigne, and making music at The Noise Nest.

girlfriends (Travis Mills and Nick Gross) | It's Real with Jordan and DemiTravis Mills and Nick Gross talk to Jordan Edwards about their band girlfriends and touring with Avril Lavigne.

girlfriends Tour Dates with Avril Lavigne

Wed Aug 14 — Ottawa, ON — Canadian Tire Centre
Fri Aug 16 — Toronto, ON — Budweiser Stage
Tue Aug 20 — Buffalo, NY — Darien Lake Amphitheater
Wed Aug 21 — Hartford, CT — The XFINITY Theatre
Fri Aug 23 — Holmdel, NJ — PNC Bank Arts Center
Sat Aug 24 — Mansfield, MA — Xfinity Center
Tue Aug 27 — Wantagh, NY — Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater
Thu Aug 29 — Camden, NJ — Freedom Mortgage Pavilion
Sat Aug 31 — Bristow, VA — Jiffy Lube Live
Sun Sep 01 — Charlotte, NC — PNC Music Pavilion
Tue Sep 03 — Alpharetta, GA — Ameris Bank Amphitheatre
Wed Sep 04 — Nashville, TN — Ascend Amphitheater
Fri Sep 06 — Cuyahoga Falls, OH — Blossom Music Center
Sat Sep 07 — Clarkston, MI — Pine Knob Music Theatre
Mon Sep 09 — Milwaukee, WI — American Family Insurance Amphitheater
Tue Sep 10 — Chicago, IL — Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
Thu Sep 12 — Minneapolis, MN — The Armory
Sat Sept 14 — Winnipeg, MB — Canada Life Centre

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