Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Backdawn Interview

1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording and release of the new album?

We started to work on new video project, one lyric video that would be released pretty soon and a full clip that we will shoot in June. We are actually working on writing the script with the same director who created our first clip that will be released on May.

2.Recently you have released a new album, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?

I used to say that we wanted to record the best metal album that we could, this is an aggressive album with a lot of melodic elements. Jeff Waters told me "aggressive music with a lot of skills and melody too". We wanted to create something with a real modern American sound. The Bosshog Studio where we recorded is entirely equipped with American equipment. First of all we wanted to have that kind of sharp, aggressive and loud guitar sound, with a strong bass with a high gain of overdrive too. We worked a lot on the sound design of the drum, actual but not standard though. We didn't want to give fans that same ridiculous ‘ez’ drummer sound that a couple of bands used to have on actual productions. During the mix we decided to put the voices a bit higher too, we didn't want to have it under mixed and I think it works very well!

It's actually very different from the last two releases we recorded, our first EP was a bit rude, I call it "proto-Backdawn" whereas "Through Extermination" was what we were searching for. When we went from the studio after "Through Extermination" I told Will, "dude, I'm not that much a fan of that album, let's work on another one with more melody" and I then started to work on ‘I Shall Burn Your Empire’.

3.You refer to your music as 'new wave thrash', can you tell us a little bit more about this term?

This the way we found to describe the band after hours of reflexion. Actually we used to say that we are a ‘metal band’, but some venues or promoters love to tag your face with that or this kind of style. After a couple of them tagged us as thrash/death, thrash, groove or even (I laughed a lot) black metal band, I decided that we had to define what we are doing. Our music is inspired by a lot of classical thrash metal bands, and we thought it was right to call it new wave thrash metal. To me this is a mix of a lot of influences from the extreme metal world in its entire conception with a huge influence from thrash metal bands.

4.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?

Well I decided to write on a lot subjects that were making me mad. Events in our society pissed me off, private facts too, and writing those lyrics was a kind of catharsis in which I could exaggerate anything while hiding in two-way texts. My lyrics are about power, religion, anger, dependence, all combined in a post apocalyptic shape. I wanted to create a little concept around who we are as humans, what should be destroyed and rebuilt. This is all about what I think should be made in another way than it is nowadays. Some songs are introspective too, but still in that vision of a catharsis.

5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Backdawn'?

This is amazing because a lot of concepts around Backdawn are speaking about creating something new. As I tell in "The Path To Glory", "Born from the ashes of a hard broken dream, this fellowship we founded to write our laws". This is our story, this the way we did things and Backdawn is a way to describe what we were searching for: to create something new, a new dawn of the metal world. When we founded the band in 2011 with Will, we wanted to play pure metal; playing new styles as deathcore or metalcore just to be modern is a damn stupidity. In 2011 a bunch of "true metal" bands went to write a couple of deathcore songs cause it was "actual" and "modern". That pissed me off. I told Will "no matter what, we'll never follow those trends and fashions" and we maintained the way we were doing things. We are Backdawn, maybe a lot will forget what metal is, but we'll stay who we are, a damn violent metal band. Metal deserves a new dawn, and even if some guys claim it's dead, it is still here in our minds and thoughts and we want to create something new and metal. This is the message we wanted to deliver.

6.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Wacken in 2014 and opening for Behemoth, Exodus and Testament in 2015 were outstanding experiences. Those three shows were amazing because they were the best shows we could deliver at that time, and I think that more exciting shows will come in the future as we are working our asses off every time to give something better on each show. Actually, we propose onstage an experience that is the same product you'll hear on CD, but with a lot more power and violence in your face. We actually haven’t played with the new line up live, but it is much more violent than what we produced live in years past.

7.Do you have any touring or show plans for the new album?

For now we are working on booking. We have some shows confirmed, but we are still searching for dates around Europe first. We have demand from fans all over the Europe especially in Germany, Switzerland, France and the UK; we're still working on booking the band.

8.On the new album you worked with Jeff Waters of 'Annihilator' on the mastering, what was it like working with this metal legend?

Jeff is a talented artist and an outstanding producer. We asked him to work on our album because he produced a couple of albums that sound great. It was amazing to work with him, he's a super nice guy and he took the time to give us the best result and you can hear it on this album. It's been two years work that’s been spent on this album; Jeff understood it very well and made it sound exactly like we wanted.

9.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?

Well, for the moment we decided to stay unsigned until we find the good label. We've received interest from many labels; we are searching for someone to release it the way it deserves to be released though. We'll wait for a couple of mails and offers before deciding what to do.

10.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of death and thrash metal?

For the moment we’ve received a lot of very good feedback, there are a lot of very good reviews, we are very happy that ‘I Shall Burn Your Empire pleases so many people. For the moment we also follow what's happening on our store, bandcamp (for the digital release) and our social media stats, and we are surprised and pleased by the fact that a bunch of people follow us from various locations all around the world.

11.What is going on with some of the other bands or musical projects these days that some of the band members are a part of?

Well not much at this point. We are working first on Backdawn, this the way we do things. Tisa is sometimes helping bands from the underground scene in replacing, for some concerts, a guitarist missing and I'm actually writing a couple of things for myself and for Backdawn. I have worked with three other bands in the past at the same time and I can say that this is not a good way to make your main project go on and progress; focusing on one project is more than enough.

12.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

We are working very hard to release ‘I Shall Burn Your Empire’ worldwide, on the internet and in stores, I'd like to distribute it as well with a good label and to start a real collaboration that will help us grow the biggest way possible. I can't tell, the market is overloaded, there are a lot of good bands, I hope we'll still be there in a dozen years, and I hope we'll manage to distribute our music to the max.

13.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

I've been a huge fan of Pantera for years, but I listened a lot to their albums, and I got very depressed a couple of times cause I'm an even bigger Dimebag fan. I was also listening to bands like Meshuggah and Gojira, but I found myself in thrash metal with classic bands like Slayer, Kreator and also Testament and Machine Head. I also discovered, as did lots of people from my generation, the guys from Lamb of God, and Rammstein. Actually I used to listen to DevilDriver a lot, this band is very amazing and creative, and I love the way Dez Fafara's vocal and lyrical style. This is a really inspiring band to me.

14.What are some of your non-musical interests?

I'm a huge horror movies consumer; I almost look to no other style of films. And I can proudly say that I’ve seen a lot of them. I'm also working on a lot on artworks, for the band first, for my pleasure too. Tisa is also working a lot on very dark artworks that are very amazing. I truly am a diehard fan of HR Giger who is to me one of the most inspiring artists of the last century. I read a lot, and am fond of occultism, religion, philosophy and politics. Well that's a bit cliché for a metal artist, but that's part of the deal...

15.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Yes, I want to thank every fan, every webzine, reviewer, journalist, endorsers, and everyone who's working on Backdawn, inside and outside the band in its musical way, for being here with us all along the road. It is very important to us to know that so many people are living this experience with us all.

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