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CONGRATULATIONS FIRST FOR PROVING THAT IT IS STILL POSSIBLE FOR A HARD-WORKING BAND TO MAKE IT IN THE MUSIC BUSINESS. I’M SURE YOU HAD THE NECESSARY DETERMINATION – BUT HAVE YOU ALWAYS BELIEVED IN YOURSELF THAT YOU WILL SUCCEED IN SUCH A SHORT TIME? Matt: Oh yeah! I mean, you know, we’ve always… since I can remember back since I was thirteen I always wanted to be in a band that really makes like it’s mark on music and that becomes a really big thing. And I think if you believe that truly with all your heart, you know, that hard work will get you there. So, that’s it! So we’ve just been working for that. BUT ON THE OTHER HAND, I’VE SEEN A LOT OF OTHER BANDS TOURING THEIR ASSES OFF, AND THEY NEVER GOT ANYWHERE. HOW IMPORTANT IS LUCK? Matt: You have to play good music, too. You can’t be playing horrible music and touring, and believing you’re gonna be the best band in the world. Let’s be realistic! BUT HOW IMPORTANT IS THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF LUCK WHEN IT COMES TO THAT? Corey: Not really. It’s just, if you work hard enough and you offer something musically as a band to the music world then, you know, you’ll stand out and people take notice. And if you just sound like, you know, regular “Josh Mode” from down the street and sound like every other band in the world, then touring twelve months out of a year is really not gonna get you anywhere. You gotta also have that kind of interest that you’re offering something that is different, or offering something that no one really else out there is really doing or sounding like. So, it’s like, you gotta have like your own thing to really stand out to, kind of get where you wanna be. RIGHT… BUT THE COINCIDENCE THAT YOU CAME ACROSS MONTE CONNOR – OR RATHER MONTE CAME ACROSS YOU – THAT CERTAINLY HAD SOMETHING TO DO WITH THAT. COULD YOU BRIEFLY SUM UP THE HISTORY OF THE PAST TWO YEARS? Matt: Well, we started in-, I joined the band in like ’99, and this is even longer ago. I joined the band like ’99, did the local scene for a while, did local demos, did crappy demos for years. Financed a decent demo with seven songs, sent that to Lifeforce Records, or actually sent that to our webmaster who sent this to Lifeforce Records, got signed to Lifeforce Records. We did a magazine compilation that included the song „If I could collapse the masses“ which is the demo that Monte heard – that’s why, that’s what you’re talking about. He actually heard that song and gave us a call, said he was interested but didn’t say we were quite good enough to be signed. We did a three song demo and music video for like „Like light to the flies“ sent that to them, they signed us immediately, we did „Ascendancy“, we’ve been touring since April 2004, the album came out in 2005, did „The Crusade“, comes out in October, and here we are now. „ASCENDANCY“ IS STILL SELLING REALLY WELL. WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO BRING OUT THE FOLLOW-UP „THE CRUSADE“ ONLY A YEAR AFTER? I DON’T THINK PEOPLE HAVE PICKED UP ON THE LAST ALBUM ENTIRELY… Corey: There is also so many people in the world that – no matter if we came out with a record now or three years from now – there is always gonna be people just picking up on us, even with the next record. We’ve out been out playing these songs even like a year before the record came out, and even like, you know, six months after the record came out, a lot of our fans were waiting for a new record just because, you know, even before the record came out, those songs were known a lot. So it’s the first time that we, you know, for having a fan-base really get a new album out without people really knowing much about it before-hand. So all the previous touring and playing those songs, it just seemed right to keep it going and get a new record out before we’d been beating this album into the ground for two years or three years of touring. So… we wanted to do it. WHAT CAME FIRST: THE ACCEPTANCE OF THE CROWD IN AMERICA OR HERE IN EUROPE? IT SEEMS THAT PEOPLE IN EUROPE – AND ESPECIALLY THE UK – DISCOVERED THE BAND TRIVIUM EARLIER THAN FANS IN THE US… Matt: It happened first in the US, because we’ve never been anywhere else, and we don’t-, when we were on Lifeforce we only did three European shows. And we did, for example, a show in Gent, Belgium in front of 20 people. So that shows the scale of those shows. So aside from that we’ve, like I said, since April 2004 we’ve been touring, like literally been touring even up until now. And we’ve done, I guess, I wanna say maybe ten or eight US tours before we even ever flew overseas. The first overseas thing we did was the European Road Rage tour which had us as a rotating band across the UK and Europe. And the reaction was so good for us they bumped us up to headliner, That tour became sold out, we came back two more times. So the UK, I mean, if you look at how many times it took, it definitely went fastest with the UK. UK and Ireland, or Republic of Ireland, or whatever it’s called. And then, I guess, Europe definitely now is a short second to that, after we did the festival season, and the US is underneath that. The US picked up first just because we all live there. But Europe is definitely the biggest country right now. YOU HAVE BEEN CONSTANTLY TOURING FOR THE PAST TWO YEARS. WHEN DID YOU FIND THE TIME TO WRITE THAT? Corey: We don’t have much downtime cause we’re always on tour. And, you know, with planning for this record we had like a two months gap in between the end of this tour and beginning of this tour. So, like four months or something before we had to go in to start working on the record we were told-, we asked: „When are we gonna write?“ And they said: „Start now!“ So we just kinda wrote everything on tour and then once we got off tour we had like, you know, like six days to kinda put all the songs together as a band. So it was… All the writing was done on tour, and then we got off tour and we just kinda went right into the studio and recorded it. So it was an interesting work schedule. HOW DO WE HAVE TO IMAGINE THAT? LIKE JAMMING IN BACKSTAGE ROOMS OR IN TOILETS AT THE VENUES? ON THE BUS AFTER THE SHOWS? Matt: We weren’t even actually in a bus yet in the US where we were writing for this record. So we were in this shitty van thing. And we had to write in that, and most times we didn’t get dressing rooms. We didn’t get backstage areas, we just had to write in the club like on the floor or on the bar stools and just had to do that until, you know, until we had the record done. So we haven’t always been under the best conditions to write but it came out really good for the conditions we were given. ESPECIALLY THE GUITAR WORK IN THE TITLE TRACK „THE CRUSADE“ IS VERY COMPLEX AND VERY PROGRESSIVE – PROBABLY VERY DIFFICULT TO PLAY AS WELL. YOU CAN’T TELL ME THAT’S SOMETHING YOU COME UP ON A BAR STOOL BEFORE A SHOW?! Matt: I wasn’t even thinking when we wrote the stuff. I mean, you know, I guess the intro for „The Crusade“, some of the technical stuff I came up with on that UK tour, that first one ever. You know, with a broken guitar in the bus upstairs, in the double-decker. I don’t know, I was just coming up with weird feelings but not on purpose. Like, I wasn’t thinking: „Hey, I wanted to go in this transition or that key change!“ It just happened. Like, I mean, one of the first riffs in the song is in 11/8 – no, was it 11 or 13? – It’s either 11 or 13, I believe it’s 11/8. And, you know, it was disputed in our band. Yeah, Travis was saying the 11/8 doesn’t exist, but I was saying it does. And we later found out it does. And I didn’t even know, I just came up with it. So I don’t know how that comes out. „Contempt“ is really hard to play and that song just came out of nowhere, too. You know, that song was written in 10, the intro riff is in 10/8. And 10 is a really strange timing to write in. I don’t know, I might be wrong, I don’t really know anything about the stuff, I’m just saying. So I could be totally wrong, we’re not classically trained musicians Corey: Just kinda all the stuff we did, like: „How did you come up with this or that“, it’s not like, you know, we really sit there and like force ourselves to do it. It’s like, all the stuff on the record is just naturally what we write. And it just comes out easy for us, or is just natural for us to play that type of stuff. So, something that’s really technical to somebody listening to, it was just something that kinda came out of how we play and how we write. So it’s just a natural sound and all the riffs are just kinda what we do. THE MOST STRIKING DIFFERENCE TO THE FIRST ALBUM IS THAT YOU GAVE UP ON THE SCREAMING BASICALLY. YOU STARTED TO SING MORE. WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO STOP SCREAMING? Matt: The best question for it is: „Why did I start?“ The reason why I started originally, I was singing in this band when I was like 14 or 15. And obviously that was right post-puberty, like literally. So my voice was really cracky and really strange. And I was a terrible singer, but I wanted to be the front guy of the band. I wanted to be the one, you know, singing. And so I just kept trying different methods and eventually I found this grunty scream thing which eventually became what everyone started to think was my main voice. But the truth is I really did it, I was screaming because I couldn’t sing. So as I became a better singer I involved a little bit more at it as people saw on the demo, like some of the songs still were full screaming because there wasn’t really singing there, yet. „Ascendancy“ was like a 60/40 and then I was like: “You know, I can sing now. So why even hold back?” And got rid of the crutch, really, which was the screaming for us. And we’re finally doing what we’ve always been wanting to do. HOW EXACTLY DID YOU TRAIN YOUR VOICE? DID YOU TAKE ANY SINGING LESSONS? Matt: I just constantly, I worked on it on my own, you know, and without singing lessons but playing shows all the time my voice got stronger and then I did some vocal coaching with Brian Anderson who worked with people, like the singer of Soundgarden, he’s worked with, I guess, Axl Rose, he‘ been working with all sorts of really big artists, and after that I worked with Melissa Cross a lot, who has the DVD “Zen of screaming”, who’s teaching people how to scream right, which is a good thing. But she showed me for singing. And there we go. I did some of that and I sing like everyday on the road, so it got better. And then all these „Ascendancy“ stuff is now sang, it’s not screamed anymore, which some people don’t like, but a lot of people like. YOU COULD SAY THAT YOU CHANGED YOUR SINGING STYLE QUITE DRASTICALLY… HOW WAS THE REACTION OF THE FANS? Corey: First, we were on the UK tour and from screaming from the-, it might have been like the first show of the tour, cause we had just done like a full US tour before that and he was screaming at the time. And whenever we did like a long tour and we played night after night, and then the screaming thing, he would always like, always loose his voice or he couldn’t-, his voice was kinda shot when he would scream, if you looked back on it and listened to it you’re like, his voice sounds rough because the screaming really fucks your voice up if you do it constantly. And when we did the UK tour and his voice pretty much-, he couldn’t scream at all. So it’s like, instead of flying all the way over there, getting there and cancelling all the shit he just sang it, cause it’s not as strenuous on your vocal chords. And for that whole tour no one really ever-, no one said anything, no one noticed. And then once we actually said like in an interview that on the new record we’re gonna not scream, then everyone was like, picked up on it. And… Matt: I might as well have not said anything. No one would have noticed. Corey: You know, there are some people that are very hard-assed about bands changing their style or evolving into something different. You know, we’re still a metal band, we just kinda have added more metal to it. Kinda like that old thrash style singing which brings a lot more to the table than just screaming. It’s a mix-, it’s a lot more going on and it’s a lot funner to listen to and it sounds cool, as far as I’m concerned. And then, you know, there’s people who heard the new material when we released a song online and they’re like: „Oh, you’re not screaming, bla, bla, bla!“ They didn’t like it, and then, you know, we get an email a few days later: „Listened to it a few more times – I like it!“ So, you know, first since it was such a change there was all the-, a lot of people who are hesitant and didn’t like it, but then, you know, the more it’s been out the more people have given it a listen, they’ve really taken to it and there is a lot more people who are into it, really liked the sound but, you know, with everything with a band progressing, you will always gonna loose some people, cause they’re, you know, not very open-minded as far as music they listen to. And then you are gonna pick up a lot of people because they like the style you’re going into, might not have liked you before but like what you’re doing now. So it’s like, you know, with every band: you’re gonna loose somebody, but you’re gonna gain a lot of people. So it’s just what we had to do to, you know, keep ourselves happy and into what we do. THE VARIETY OF STYLES ON “THE CRUSADE” IS ALSO QUITE REMARKABLE. THE FIRST SINGLE “ANTHEM“ FOR EXAMPLE IS A VERY TRADITIONAL POWER METAL SONG WITH ITS METAL CHANTS. DO YOU CONSCIOUSLY TRY TO WRITE SONGS THAT ARE VERY DIVERSE FROM EACH OTHER? Corey: We don’t try to be, like on purpose, to be like: we need to be diverse. It’s just we all listen to so many different bands and so many styles of metal or rock that it just kind of comes out. And instead of playing, you know, being stuck in a box playing, you know, pure thrash or pure this-or-whatever like some bands do, they’re just in that box. You know, we have so many different influences and like to write different kind of stuff. And that makes it more interesting for us, and also people buy the CD they, you know, track by track they gonna get something different through the whole record than just hearing like a 100 miles an hour thrash riffs or double bass flying the whole time, there is breathing room for all sorts of different things and a lot of different influences come out. And so we like to do, so it’s not like, you know, five records from now, if we do the same thing every record and then one record later on in our career, like ten years from now we do something different, then people are gonna be freaking out. It’s like every record we try to throw in or do something that just kinda naturally comes out as, you know, being different and kinda different influences come into the writing and it just kinda comes out that way. So I think, it’s funner for us and I think it should be pretty interesting for fans, like every time they pick up a record, they know, they’re not gonna be, you know, it’s not gonna be like „Ascendancy 2.0“ or „The Crusade 2.0“. They’re getting something fresh, but still Trivium. WHEN I BROUGHT UP THE POWER METAL, IT JUST SUITED NICELY THAT THERE IS ONE SONG TITLE INCLUDING THE WORD „DRAGON“… Matt: That’s what everyone says. Like: „Oh, dungeons and dragons-stuff!“ Very, very far from it! It’s actually written about Japanese mythology, about a Koi fish jumping over… Well, Japanese mythology states that if the Koi fish makes it – and I believe it’s also Chinese – if the Koi fish swims up the yellow river – I believe it’s in China, it could be in Japan. I’m not really sure – if it makes it over the waterfall God grants that Koi to be able to turn into a dragon. And both animals, both the Koi and the dragon, have all these different symbolic mythology tied into it. And I go into that in the song. So, it’s, yeah, not Tolkien but, you know, Japanese. MATT, YOU ARE HALF-JAPANESE, WERE BORN IN JAPAN, AND THEN YOU MOVED TO THE US WHEN YOU WERE VERY YOUNG. WHAT IMPACT DID THE JAPANESE CULTURE HAVE ON YOUR UPBRINGING? HAS IT FORMED YOU AS A PERSON IN ANY WAY? Matt: The way I was raised, definitely. I mean, you know, at that end of the culture. But as I’ve grown up more I wanted to become more in touch with it. So I’m going to hopefully learn the language. I mean, I’ve learned enough, when we went over there I learned the set in Japanese to be able to speak to the audience in Japanese. Obviously all the tattoos I have are very Japanese significant, they’re original pieces by Japanese artists. I’m learning more and more about the culture, hence the song „Becoming the dragon“. So, yeah. YOU’RE NOT SINGING ABOUT PARTYING ALL NIGHT OR ABOUT BROKEN RELATION-SHIPS. YOUR LYRICS OFTEN DEAL WITH DISTRESS AND DESPAIR. CAN YOU TELL ME SOMETHING MORE ABOUT THE KIND OF TOPICS YOU WROTE ABOUT? Matt: The new album isn’t about despair and distress at all. The new album is very much about the world on a global scale, I mean, socio-political, not politics, but about acceptance of people. Not just tolerance, not intolerance but being something of, you know, people-, „Ignition“ for example, talking about how close-minded the general public is. I have a lot of songs that deal with specific current events that deal with either specific underlying themes of racism or… It’s just all about that kind of stuff on this record. The last record „Ascendancy“ is very much about personal struggle and getting over life, but this one is about educating people on what’s going on in the current world. THE WAY YOU WRITE, THE WAY YOU STRUCTURE THE SENTENCES, THE WORDS YOU USE – THAT’S ALL DONE IN A VERY ELOQUENT WAY. WHERE DO YOU DRAW YOUR INSPIRATION FROM? DO YOU READ A LOT OF NEWSPAPERS, ARE YOU INTO LITERATURE? Matt: Yeah, I don’t know where that comes from. I guess, I did good in English in school, so there you go. No, this stuff is derived from, I guess, I didn’t used to be a very news-conscious person of what’s going on in the world, but I’ve become that way and, you know, I’ve always been aware that people are intolerant and bigoted. So I just wrote my views on that and about acceptance of all sexualities, all races, people not being sexist, people not being generally stupid and, you know, a lot of it is about intolerance. LAST WEEK YOU SHOT TWO VIDEOS: ONE FOR „ENTRANCE OF THE CONFLAGRATION“ AND ONE FOR „ANTHEM“. MUSICALLY SPEAKING THERE ARE WORLDS BETWEEN THESE TWO SONGS. WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TWO SONGS THAT ARE SO VERY DIFFERENT FROM EACH OTHER – FOR TWO DIFFERENT MARKETS? Corey: They are both gonna end up being released in the same market. It’s just in the US, it just seemed to work out better coming out with a more straight-forward metal song. Cause, you know, most people maybe in the States, if they heard „Anthem“ first, they would think the whole record is like that. So it’s kinda like: „Hey, here is the metal track, you know, there you go!“ And then after people kind of know that, and then we come out with „Anthem“ it’s kinda like just showing people a different side of what the record is and what the band is like. And overseas like in the UK, you know, our record has done really, really well there and that would be a good single for that type of market. And then once the record has been out for a while in the US and really, you know, been kind of listened to and bought and people know what the record is like coming out. So it’s not like a false idea of what the record might be like. So, but everyone in the world: both videos will be out! So it’s not like, you know, we made videos for certain places and not somewhere else. DO YOU HAVE TO STRUGGLE WITH PEOPLE TRYING TO LABEL YOUR MUSIC? IN YOUR BIO I READ „HARDROCK“, THEN IT’S „THRASH“, „METALCORE „IS ANOTHER ONE – WHICH IS THE TERM YOU DESPISE THE MOST? Matt: Well, I hate all of them! I think, people are so eager to label everything and it’s just what we say, is we’re a band that makes music and that’s it, you know! We definitely, we had been hold „metal core“ thing, people were saying. We’ve never been a metal core band. The definition of metal core is a combination of metal and hardcore. The four of us don’t listen to hardcore, we never have. And it’s pretty obvious in our music. And even in „Ascendancy“ or even in anything we have ever done. I think people just want labels. I don’t know why, but I think labels are very limiting. And if you give a band a label, they’re only gonna be able to go so far. If you give ‚em a… whatever it is, if it’s some ridiculously long title for a band. I mean, I used to do the same thing for bands when I was younger, and it’s just… all of this is limiting. And so people are gonna try, but the thing that we prove in our music is that we’re really un-definable. I mean, cause we go all over the place from elements of a little bit of everything: elements of speed, thrash, technical progressive, rock. I mean, the song „The Rising“, the song for „The Crusade“ is-, it’s still Trivium, it still sounds like us but it’s not a thrash metal song. It’s like a rock song, purely. And I think we’re always gonna be doing that, we’re gonna go further out where further is simpler, and further more technical. And I think that’s what we’re always gonna do, cause we’re all just making music here. We’re not making anything in specific. BUT DO YOU THINK A RECORD CAN BE TOO DIVERSE? Corey: All the songs, like, they’re diverse from each other, they go from thrash metal to rock, but it all kinda falls in the same, like, land of music, I guess like. It just sounds like Trivium, it’s not like that far off that it’s like you can’t comprehend it. So it’s still, I just think like as far as I listen to music, regardless of what category it falls in, good music is good music, good songs are good songs, regardless if it sounds like every other song on the record. It can go from a thrash metal to a rock song, if it’s a good tune… Who cares what genre it is or what style it is. It’s a good song, it’s fun to listen to and that’s all like I really care about. So… WHAT DO YOU GET MORE ENTHUSIASTIC ABOUT WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT: YOUR OWN HEADLINING TOUR IN THE STATES WHICH IS UP FOR THE FALL OR THE MAIDEN STADIUM TOUR? Matt: Well, they’re both exciting in their own way. Cause we’ve never had headlined North America before on our own. And that’s gonna be incredible in it’s own way because it shows that we went from being first of four, you know on our first tour we were first of four for God Forbid, and then now we’re, you know, headlining. So… And then we’re also opening up for the greatest band, one of the greatest metal bands in the world. So they’re both equally good in their own way. I couldn’t pick. I’m glad we’re doing both. Corey. I’m excited for both because they’re different. You know, as he said, headline tours are different than opening for Maiden. We’re playing in front of a majority of our own fans, and that’s really fun because you know the shows are gonna be good. And also playing our new record and playing new songs is gonna be exciting and that’s a good way to warm up to open up for Maiden. And that’s gonna be cool because opening for Maiden, it’s like – especially here in Europe – it’s gonna be a big help because we’re getting to play in front of a lot of people and places where we’re typically played in front of like less people, and get in front of a lot people who had never heard of us. And also it’s fun because, you know, we get to see one of the best bands in the world play every night. So, you know, as far as being a fan it’s gonna be really fun playing, touring with a band that, you know, that you’ve looked up to for a long time. Matt: Well, if anyone says: „Trivium sucks!“ – well, Iron Maiden likes us. So, they’re probably wrong! YOU’VE BEEN PLASTERED WITH MUSIC AWARDS IN THE PAST YEAR, MATT FOR EXAMPLE GOT THE „GOLDEN GOD“ AWARD BY SOME BRITISH MAGAZINE. HOW MUCH DO THEY MEAN TO YOU? DO YOU HAVE THEM LINED UP IN THE LIVING-ROOM OR DO YOU USE THEM AS DOOR-STOPPERS IN THE PRACTISE ROOM? Matt: I don’t even know where our stuff is. They still haven’t sent us that stuff, it’s still in the UK. I mean, you know, that stuff is amazing, it’s always great that someone thinks that we’re this or that, or it’s great that the fans vote that, or the editors of the magazines think that . It never goes to our head. We’re just happy we get it. You know, we get one, we say: „Ok, now time for the other one!“. We get the other one – time for the next one. We’re happy about it all. We’ve got a gold record in the UK, and that’s the only place in the world. But we’re like: “Ok, now it’s time to get a gold record everywhere else and it’s time to get a platinum record over there!” So it’s like, there is always time for more. HOW ABOUT OTHER BANDS BEING ENVIOUS? IS IT LIKE A “POSITIVE” COMPETITION OR ARE THEY BEING JEALOUS? Matt: We don’t know what other bands think is my answer to the other question, or my thing I said earlier: METALLICA and IRON MAIDEN like us, that’s all that matters. If any band smaller then them thinks anything, I don’t give a fuck! It’s like, if any band that is smaller than Metallica doesn’t like us – who cares? METALLICA likes us! And they’ll never be as big. So, there you go! Corey: Like, I don’t really could care less, like what another band thinks of us cause we’re doing what we love to do. We’re playing the music we wanna do, we’re on tour, we get to make records, we have the privilege of a record label believing in us to put out our music and we get to tour and play for fans and make new fans, and do what we love to do. So it’s like, what do I care what some other band thinks of us, cause we’re doing exactly what we wanna be doing. So it doesn’t stop us, it motivates us to like kinda: “Fuck you! You’re touring in a van, playing in front of 100 people and we’re opening for Iron Maiden!” So it’s like, you know, we’re doing what we wanna do, we’ve worked hard to earn it. So it’s like, people can kiss my ass if they, you know, have any stupid things to say, that it were handed to us. We’re working hard, we’re earning what we get and we put in more touring effort and more hard work into what we do than most bands do. So, it’s like, if they’re not where they wanna be, then they should look at themselves instead of trying to shit down on someone who’s doing better than them. So… You know I could… There is other bands I don’t like as far, you know… no personal thing with them but I might not like their music but they’re doing really well. You know, it’s like I don’t put them down because they’re bigger than us. It’s like, you know, they’re doing a good job at what they do and they’re earning what they get. So, it’s all just, you know, you put in hard work and if it doesn’t work out for you then… (chuckles) Matt: There’s always Mac Donald’s and Walmart for you! YOU SAID THAT YOU GOING TO KEEP TOURING AND TOURING. ARE YOU PLANNING TO SLOW DOWN – EVER? Matt: Probably not. But the conditions get better. I mean, we went from being in a van to being in a shitty bus-van-thing to being in a bus and you keep getting bigger. And then hopefully you’re in an aeroplane next and you have hotels. You know, you just keep… that’s the next step up, but that’s a while away. Then you go from one bus, two busses, three busses, four busses. See, you tour a lot but it keeps getting better and if you’re tremendously huge it’s not like you can tour a million dates in one territory. You know, if we were enormous in Germany right now we couldn’t play a thousand dates, probably we’d play like twenty dates. Cause you’d probably play in front of 10.000 people a day, 20.000 people a day, and then move on to the next territory. Corey: You see like how Metallica did it. They were-, they started ’81, something like that, and their first record came out in like ’83. They were non-stop on tour until after the black album. So they went like over ten years of: coming out of the record – touring – coming out of the record – touring. And Iron Maiden did the same thing, and you see where that got bands, like those style of bands, metal bands who don’t typically get plastered on MTV or get the major radio airplay. Touring is your bread and butter, that’s how you make a living, that’s how you get your music out. And you kinda look back in history and you see like how the big metal bands, who are big and huge today, how they did it. They just relentlessly toured, played everywhere they could in front of anybody they could, and that’s how you do it, unless you are like Britney Spears and you don’t really have to tour cause you’re on MTV every three seconds. So it’s like, you gotta tour in this style of music to make it. And we like touring, we like playing, so it’s not like a pain in the ass or anything. Matt: Our job requires, involves playing thirty to sixty minutes a day, and that’s it. Where most people have to work from nine to five. Aside from that you got nothing to do. LET’S SPEAK ABOUT DISCIPLINE ON THE ROAD. I READ THAT YOU LIKE TO PARTY AFTER SHOWS? Corey: That was the van days. When you’re touring in a van, you’re stuck in this tiny van driving yourselves for seven hours a night, not really sleeping or anything. And you gotta get crammed in this van with everybody. So we all get… Because when you get out of this van you’re like: “I’m outta the van!” and you just let loose and you try to do whatever you can to like entertain yourselves before you have to go back in that van. But then once the accommodations for touring got better and we got into a bus it like kinda like mellowed out, because you’re kinda like, you can just go on the bus and relax and just chill. So it’s like, you know, there is some nights every once in a while where you have this big blow-out party night. But it’s not as crazy as it used to be. Like it’s more mellow and we can last longer on tour with not as hectic of a time. So it definitely helps us out like not getting completely shit-faced every single night playing-wise cause you’re up to party. Cause you’re only there for that thirt, sixty minutes of playing, so you gotta be on top of your game to make sure people get their money’s worth and come away happy, and not pissed off cause you’re falling over on stage for being drunk or something. (laughs) HEY… YOU’RE NOT EVEN ALLOWED TO DRINK ALCOHOL IN THE STATES, AREN’T YOU?! Matt: I mean, when we were in the van I was like 19 years old getting hammered. You know, I mean, we did… I personally did the sex, drugs and rock’n roll thing. But now when I tour I only will drink if I have the day off the next day, and it’s only a little bit. I run in the mornings, exercise in the afternoons, then I play a show. So I’m pretty healthy on tour. DID YOU JUST SAY: „I DID THE SEX, DRUGS, AND ROCK’N ROLL THING”?!?? Corey: Yu first start off, you’re like on tour, it’s a new thing, you’re all excited and it’s like, you always hear stories about the „sex, drugs, rock’n roll“ and you’re like in a band, first time on tour you wanna like try everything. It’s kinda like, cause it’s like: it’s there! It’s like, you’re like: „Whoa!“ All these new things toy try and then after you try ‚em, you know, some people will do it for years, years and years and access, and all the kinda perks of being in band. And then some people try it and they’re like: it’s gets old after a while, you know. Matt: Got it out of my system and I’m done with it, and it’s not for me. YOU STARTED OUT TO BECOME THE „BEST AND THE BIGGEST BAND IN THE WORLD“. HOW MANY MORE MONTHS DO YOU THINK YOU NEED IN ORDER TO ACHIEVE THAT? Corey: That’s trying to get to a status of like of Metallica or Iron Maiden. Maiden… Metallica didn’t sell like 90 million records in their first six years they were out. It’s like, you know, some bands, you know, wanna be the biggest thing, kinda like the flavour of the week, and then they’re gone. You don’t hear about them. They play stadiums for like a year and then they go away for a while and they come back, and they’re playing like 600 seated places, you know. We wanna be, you know, longevity it’s like the key to be able to do this twenty years from now and still be relevant like Metallica or Iron Maiden is. Like all those bands, you know, they’re-, they’ve been doing it for twenty, twenty-five years, and they’re still playing arenas and putting out platinum records or whatever. That’s like the main, like the kinda long-term goal is to be able to have that kind of status and that longevity and have an actual career instead of just being there and gone and, you know, working at Walmart – but you have a gold record on your wall. RECORDED ON AUGUST 17TH 2006 IN COLOGNE

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