Date: October 5th, 2008
Venue: University, Keele, UK
Interviewer: Zach Redrup
Download: None available
The Taste Of Chaos annual tour has quickly become a smaller, more versatile version of the US Vans Warped Tour, but bordering across more than just one country. As I Lay Dying are just one band on the bill during the UK leg of the festival tour, providing a traditional yet intense metalcore sound. After being guided to the band’s backstage dressing room, filled to the brim with members and crew from some other bands featured on the tour, DEAD PRESS! and guitarist Phil Sgorro are led to an outside corridor, away from the loud occupied room:
The band’s tour manager (who also happens to be Rou Reynold‘s father) meets with DEAD PRESS! outside the Student Union shop of the venue before leading them upstairs to the band’s dressing room. Bassist Chris introduces himself, and kindly offers the journalists a drink or some food from their table. Guitarist Rory spends a minute or two choosing what he wants from the nearby take-away before sitting down and taking part in the interview.
Zach: How’s the tour been going so far?
Chris: Good, good. We had a â€“ erm, warm-up show in Cambridge, which was a little ropey.
Rory: In, er, London do you mean?
Chris: Yeah sorry, Camden, Camden. Erm, yeah which was very ropey, but it was only a small show at the Camden Underworld, so it was kinda â€“ it was hard to play a tight set ’cause everyone was â€“ the audience were running onstage and just diving off, and like trampling all over our pedal boards and stuff, so a lot of stuff went wrong. But then we got into Cambridge, and the first proper show of the tour, and it’s all been going pretty smoothly since then really.
Rory: Touch wood.
Chris: Yeah, touch wood. We are due a massive, massive fuck up. Maybe tonight.
Zach: Maybe. [laughs]
Chris: Yeah, we’ll see.
Zach: Do you prefer to play small venues or music festivals?
Chris: Erm, I dunno. Festivals are so different to like normal shows during this like –
Rory: They’ve both got their good points and their bad points like, the small gigs like you’re right next to the fans so there’s a lot more like crowd surfing and fan interaction and stuff like that, and you get a buzz in that kinda way. But then big festivals you get the kinda playing in front of several thousands of people, like that kinda buzz. It’s different, you know. It’s good to do both really.
Chris: I think what it is the smaller shows have a bit more of a like, a nostalgia you know, ’cause like it’s â€“ it’s very much like where we came from and what we always used to do, but â€“ well, for years before we got any real recognition sort of thing, so it’s always â€“ always when we get the chance to do those smaller shows it’s always like a trip down memory lane sort of thing.
Zach: You’ve got a new single coming out, ‘We Can Breathe In Space, They Just Don’t Want Us To Escape’, what made you want to re-record the song?
Chris: Erm, well we never really released it, I mean like people have been getting a hold of it through like P2P sites but, erm, and we kind of thought it was you know â€“ we didn’t really wanna just let it fizzle out you know, just ’cause of the fact that people can download it, and that was just a demo we recorded in my garage, like years and years ago, so we wanted to get â€“ I dunno, it’s a good way to test out with working with a new producer, erm, in terms of thinking for the album, and yeah, it just came out really well and, I guess there’s nothing holding bands back from releasing random singles, or just whenever they write it just chucking it out there these days. It doesn’t have to be a part of a campaign or anything.
Rory: Yeah, we’ve been getting a lot of complaints from people you know, saying “The old version is much better, why’d you re-record it?” and stuff like that. I mean, I mean we didn’t mainly re-record it for like the fans that we’ve already got, you know, we re-recorded for people who haven’t been on to LimeWire and downloaded everything that has Enter Shikari written next to it. Erm, just ’cause you know, we thought it was a great song and we just wanted like more people to hear it, you know. There’s absolutely no way we could’ve released that old version. I mean like it was pretty rubbish in a lot of ways, in production ways, and like a lot of vocals were like â€“ needed redoing and stuff.
Chris: I mean we completely rewrote it, and like that’s what people don’t understand. The fact that it was just a demo, you know, it wasn’t even meant to be online at all or anything like that, it was just done three or four years ago, and we just put it up for people to listen to see what they thought when we were just going around touring, and it’s â€“ people seem to think that it was a proper release you know just ’cause it’s on LimeWire and stuff, so. People complain at us for re-releasing stuff. Well, they say re-releasing but it’s not even re-releasing, we never really released it, you know. Essentially it’s just a new song.
Zach: In the music video you dressed in tin foil spacesuits, how did the shoot go?
Chris: Sweaty. [laughs]
Rory: Yeah, it was quite an ordeal. By the end of it â€“ well I mean, Rob was alright ’cause Rob had like a fan blowing up his suit clearing all the air, and he wasn’t even sweating. For the rest of us it was just like absolutely horrendous, like –
Chris: Yeah, once we got in the suits, it took so long to get us all taped up and everything, and all the gaps covered with foil and stuff that once we did it we had to just do, I dunno, about ten takes straight through and it was ugh â€“ that was the worst bit.
Rory: It was worst like actually getting â€“ ’cause in the end there was only two people like doing the suits, so â€“ I can’t remember who went first, it was either me or you I think, and then â€“ but it takes about like 15-20 minutes to kind of actually get, you know, properly foiled up and everything. As soon as you’re actually foiled up you start sweating, so it’s just like, so.
Chris: You’ve gotta wait like two hours before everyone else is done afterwards aswell, and then you go down there and run through and stuff. By this time you’re already steamed up in your masks, you know, so.
Rory: And then you’re in the suit for like four hours or something like that.
Chris: We spent the whole day before aswell foiling everything up which took quite a while. It was fun. It was worth doing it. It’s the kind of thing like at the time we were just absolutely sick of the idea, you know, but looking back at it now it’s kinda like we’re glad we went through with it.
Rory: Yeah. Well, even at the time it was pretty hilarious.
Chris: [laughs] Yeah. It was.
Rory: Actually doing the takes and stuff you know, trying to pretend to play in the suits.
Chris: Yeah. We got some great footage from, erm â€“ we’re just bringing out like a ‘The Making Of…’ video, and like in that â€“ like ’cause the real video’s got so many effects on and stuff, and it’s like you can’t really see how tongue-in-cheek it was, but in ‘The Making Of…’ you can just see how ridiculous it all looked, and how funny it was. It was a good day.
[frontman Rou Reynolds walks into the dressing room]
Zach: Is there anymore news you can tell us about the album? Like a release date, or album title?
Chris: We’ve got neither really. We’ve got â€“ we aim, I mean like we go into the studio after this tour to record it, so I mean it all depends on how quickly we can do it. We’ve set aside like five weeks, erm, as an original timeline I guess to get it all done, and then we’ll get into mixing, so we’re hoping to release March/April time next year kind of, but yeah, no we’ve got no name yet. I guess we kinda wanna wait and see how it’s sounding and how it’s feeling before we decide on a name.
Zach: If you could tour with any band, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Rory: Erm, I guess it would be – it would be cool to see and tour with At The Drive-In, just ’cause every time you tour with a band that you ever see you’re influenced by them like performance-wise, music-wise, and stuff like that. To be able to see such an incredibly amazing live band every night would be pretty inspirational.
Chris: Hmm… yeah, At The Drive-In, I wished I’d seen them before they split up. Yeah, At The Drive-In would be pretty cool.
Zach: If you weren’t in the band, what would you be doing right now instead?
Chris: Woolworths. I used to work in Woolworths. I dunno, well, we all quit uni to come and to pursue the band once we signed our publishing deal, so we’d pretty much be doing nothing, yeah. I don’t really have many skills.
Rory: I had a â€“ I had a pretty nice job actually in Dollond & Aitchison, the opticians. Sat making glasses and attaching the lenses. So that was really fun.
Chris: Still be doing that?
Rory: Yeah. Probably be onto contact lenses by now.
Chris: Yeah, basically we’d probably not be doing much with ourselves, I’m sure.
Rory: Well, we’d probably all be alcoholics by now.
Zach: You played the Projekt Revolution show earlier this year, how did you find that?
Chris: That was wicked. That one of er â€“ that was probably our biggest, yeah it was our biggest gig to date, in terms of people you know. I remember being really paranoid before ’cause I kinda lost my voice just before the show, and I was really panicking. But I went out, and it was okay in the end. It was good fun. We didn’t really get to â€“ we didn’t really meet Jay-Z or anything, which was a bit of a shame.
Zach: Oh well.
Chris: But yeah, it was fun.
Zach: Last question, what can we expect from you guys this time next year?
Chris: Where are we? What month is it? October?
Rory: Everyone will probably be really, really bored of hearing the new album.
Rory: Because we’ll have just toured the fuck out of it, and â€“
Chris: Well we wanted to get back in the studio again, to re-record new stuff.
Rory: Yeah, we want â€“ I mean, next year the plan is just to travel, and tour around.
Chris: I think we’re gonna dedicate a lot of â€“ a fair bit of time this year and next year to going to the States, China. Work it over there a bit, try and build it up â€“ build it up over there. And yeah, and stuff like, I guess Japan and Australia and stuff. We wanna get out there again, ’cause we’ve only just started over there really, we’ve got a lot of conquering to do.
And with that, the members bid DEAD PRESS! goodbye, but not before offering them drink or food again. They ensure the journalists know their way back from where they came, and await for their recently ordered take-away meals before taking to the stage that night.
Written by Zach Redrup
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989.