Comeback Kid (08 octobre 2005)

Dave et moi nous sommes entetenus avec Jeremy Hiebert, le guitariste de COMEBACK KID lorsqu'ils étaient en ville samedi dernier.

[CATH] Your cd Wake The Dead came out earlier this year – awesome cd by the way.

[JEREMY] Thank you!

[CATH] What’s the response been like so far?

[JEREMY] Well, we’ve been very fortunate I guess to put out a CD at this time because hardcore seems to have received a little more acknowledgement from the mainstream or whatever. So as far as sales and numbers and stuff like that, it’s doing a lot better than it probably would have done maybe five or ten years ago. But that aside, it’s been well received so we’re pretty lucky to be in the position we are in right now.

[CATH] And how do you feel about hardcore being kind of like the trend of the moment?

[JEREMY] I mean, it doesn’t bother me. It’s just how music is, you know? Like in the early nineties, grunge was huge but that existed for a while before that. Different styles come and go, there’s always going to be that fan base that’s always going to come and support it. Even bands like STRUNG OUT, pop-punk bands from the mid-nineties, they used to play these huge shows and now they’re a bit smaller these days. So everything kind of comes and goes back and forth – right now hardcore is getting a little more attention, but a year from now it may not, so… It really doesn’t bother me cause it’s a normal thing.

[CATH] And that’s what you do anyways…

[JEREMY] Yeah! That’s it. It’s just a cycle. But you have to be prepared, to be able to adjust quickly to your surroundings because some people, they think they’re rock stars right away as soon as they get a little bit of attention from this or that and as soon as that turns away they feel lost – they’re doing it for the wrong reasons.

[DAVE] As long as you can make a living out of it…

[JEREMY] We hope to make a living out of it!

[CATH] How’s that going though – do you guys have day jobs and stuff?

[JEREMY] No, we’re lucky enough to make enough to be able to go home and pay rent. So as far as that goes… Actually, I probably should have a job when I go home, but…


[DAVE] But are you guys that much home, or?…

[JEREMY] Um, I’d say it’s about fifty-fifty. We spend more time at home than I’d like to – I’d like to be out on the road a lot more than we are but I mean, we’re out on the road a fair amount but you can always be out more!

[DAVE] Do you enjoy being on the road?

[JEREMY] Yeah! I mean, I’m an old guy, I probably should have a wife and kids and this and that [laughs] but no – I enjoy the road.

[CATH] That’s cool. And how’s the tour going so far? When did it start anyways?

[JEREMY] It started in Vancouver on um…. [Jeremy sort sa passe backstage pour vérifier les dates] on the 16th of September. So it’s been a week or so, maybe two – I can’t do math! – but yeah, it’s been a fun tour because it’s not just all hardcore bands. There’s a pretty diverse lineup with THE REASON, us and BANE and STRUNG OUT. So there’s a lot of kids at shows, it’s fun playing to a wide range of kids.

[CATH] And what made you want to start this band?

[JEREMY] Well we started this band I guess just to try something different because back then there weren’t too many bands that sounded like the way we did, and they definitely weren’t any popular bands. It just started out with us wanting to have some fun, we never really had any agenda, like we’re not a political band, we’re not a Christian band, we’re not this or that – we’re just a bunch of dudes that got together to play music. That’s still what we’re doing today. We’re just completely different guys, our backgrounds are different, our outlooks on life are very different, but we just enjoy playing the music that we play and we enjoy being out on the road and playing it for people that can appreciate it.

[DAVE] Do you find it easier to have people with different backgrounds in the band?

[JEREMY] No, no. It’s definitely not easier but …it… keeps things a little more interesting I guess [laughs]. Cause I am very different from Andrew, who is very different from Kevin – I mean, we’re all so different that I think it will help in some ways because it kind of diversifies things musically and as who we are as people. But as far as making some concrete decisions sometimes it’s a little tougher. But that’s life! We don’t all want to be the same robot.

[CATH] And how are things with FIGURE FOUR ?

[JEREMY] How are things with FIGURE FOUR … Well, me and Andrew, we haven’t done that for a while.

[CATH] Are you gonna, or…?

[JEREMY] Well right now we’re just… This is really busy, I’ll just let you know where everybody’s at: Mel is back in school in engineering right now, so she’s as busy as they get. Steve, the drummer, bought a house; He’s a little tied down with that so he’s got a full-time job fixing computers and stuff like that. Bailey our bass player has been playing with different bands, he’s in SHATTERED REALM and he moved back - his sister got killed a couple months ago so he moved back to live with his mom so he’s back in Vancouver right now. That being said and me and Andrew are really busy with COMEBACK KID, it’s hard to make FIGURE FOUR work right now. We haven’t broken up, but we’re all at different places. Personally, I’d love to write another record and do more touring but whether or not it’s gonna happen, I don’t know! I can’t give any kind of definite answer one way or another but me, personally, I’m not done yet!

[CATH] And earlier this year you were in Japan and Australia and all these crazy places – what was that like?

[JEREMY] Oh! It was incredible! It’s another one of those things where you just kind of have to step back and look at it and realize that we’re just really lucky to have been able to all that because if we weren’t in this band, I can’t say that I would have ever been able to go to those countries, so… And it’s just an awesome thing to be able to meet people from different cultures, who have different outlooks on life, different approaches to different issues that you come across. I just have a strong appreciation for diversity so it’s always nice getting somewhere where it seems a little fresh – even though it may be stale for them, it’s always nice to see what makes them tick.

[DAVE] And how was the crowd in Japan?

[JEREMY] Well Japan is very interesting compared to anywhere else because they’re really polite people and really respectful. Their mindset is like, “what can I do for you?”, not “what can YOU do for ME” you know? They’re always there to help us and I feel that we in North America have a lot to learn from them because they are really appreciative and nice to everybody around them.

[CATH] And where else have you been on tour?

[JEREMY] We played one show in Mexico, we’ve been to pretty much every western-european country – a few of those were a little further East – and we’re going to go back there again in November with BANE so that’s cool. And then with FIGURE FOUR, me and Andrew did a three week tour in Brazil a couple years ago. It’s always nice to be able to go to places for free!


[CATH] A nice little holiday – although it probably isn’t really….

[JEREMY] Yeah, kind of…


[JEREMY] Like our last european tour, it was five weeks long and we had two days off for the whole tour so…

[CATH] Ouch!

[DAVE] And you were playing every night?

[JEREMY] Yeah, every night. But it was a great time.

[CATH] And what’s up in Winnipeg right now?

[JEREMY] What’s up un Winnipeg… I don’t know! I don’t spend too much time there. When we’re not touring, I guess I spend a bit of time there – I just play a lot of poker…


[JEREMY] I don’t know – Winnipeg, it’s our home! Compared to other cities, there isn’t much to do or see but it’s a place for us to call home. There’s always bands that are stating because everybody’s so bored and there’s nothing else to do!


[JEREMY] That’s why you got bands like THE GUESS WHO? and PROPAGANDHI and COMEBACK KID coming out because in the summer we’re slapping mosquitoes and in the winter it’s so cold that we spend all our time inside making music.


[CATH] That’s cool. And are there good up and coming bands that you can think of that we should check out?

[JEREMY] Um, yeah, HOLLOW GROUND – I don’t know if anybody here has heard of them but I know they’re gonna be doing some touring, although I don’t know if they’re coming to Montreal [ils seront en première partie de SHATTERED REALM au Café L’Inconditionnel le 10 octobre]. We took them out on a little tour but they ran into some vehicle trouble so they weren’t able to finish it. They’re definitely a band to look out for. They’re a little harder. There is more but I just can’t think of them off the top of my head because I am an old man!


[CATH] OK so tell me about your video for Wake The Dead, who shot it, where, when and all that.

[JEREMY] That was definitely a first time experience for all of us – very draining. We did all the live stuff in one day but I mean, I get tired from half an hour of that inside, so… Doing that for six hours – oh! I was just beat. And al the kids that were around too, there was a lot going on.

[CATH] Yeah, you do have a lot of people in that video!

[JEREMY] They were going off for so long so my hat goes off to them because I don’t’ know how they stuck around for that long. It was directed by Mark [Ricciardelli], – I can’t remember his last name right now, but he’s done all the ALEXISONFIRE videos and stuff like that so he flew in to Winnipeg and worked with us on that. It was an awesome experience working with him and his crew.

[CATH] And are you planning on doing more videos?

[JEREMY] Um, it’s hard to say right now because we’re kind of like in a weird position with our band; we were talking about making another video – I guess we’re gonna figure out in the next week or two whether or not we’re gonna do one. The album has been out for quite some time and I don’t know – we’re gonna be out on the road so if everything lines up percetly we might be able to but I’m not sure right now.

[DAVE] Did it get a lot of airplay?

[JEREMY] MuchMusic was nice to us, yeah! They let it go. I think here in Quebec – is it Musique Plus? They’ve been supporting it as well so we’re just really grateful towards all these people that are willing to play something that normally probably woult not get played.

[CATH] And who takes care of your artwork and stuff like that generally speaking; is it something that’s really important to you and that you look into?

[JEREMY] For cover art and stuff?

[CATH] All of it, including t-shirts, merch and everything.

[JEREMY] It comes from all over the place. Like Scott, our singer, when it comes to t-shirt designs, he likes to contact different people who do shirts for bands and give em some kind of an idea of what we’re looking for and then they send us some of their ideas and we just work together on that. We have a beautiful Winnipeg Jets t-shirt available, I don’t know if you saw that...


[DAVE] Yeah, I saw it!

[JEREMY] That was actually done by this guy Jack [Caron], he plays with this band called WITH HONOR. He designed that one for us.

[DAVE] And how long do you think you’ll be able to sell it for before you get sued?


[JEREMY] Hopefully a long time! I mean, the Jets aren’t around anymore, it shouldn’t matter, so…

[CATH] Hmmm, I don’t know!


[CATH] And are you thinking of your next CD already? Have you recorded any new songs yet?

[JEREMY] We haven’t done any pre-production yet, but me and Andrew definititely have a lotof ideas that we’re kind of throwing around with each other right now. When I’m at home, I’m just screwing around and he’s doing the same, so I think in the winter when we get back from Europe we’re plobably gonna go down to my basement and start working through a bunch of stuff.

[CATH] And you’re heading out on tour again after this?

[JEREMY] After we’re done this tour, we’re gonna go home for a full two weeks and then we’re going to Europe for another three and a half weeks.

[CATH] Are you going by yourselves?

[JEREMY] It will be us and BANE, we’re gonna do that together, and this other band from Japan called FC FIVE – they’re gonna be on the bus as well, so it’ll be a good time I think!

[CATH] Tell me about Wakestock this summer – he [DAVE] was there, I wasn’t –

[JEREMY] Oh, that thing on the Toronto Islands?

[CATH] Yeah!

[JEREMY] It was interesting – I mean, I think the one bummer for the festival overall was that not too far away, GREEN DAY and JIMMY EAT WORLD were playing the same day so I think that affected the attendance a bit. But it was just a fun thing to do when you play club after club after culb, it’s kinf of nice to go out and do a festival that you don’t normally do.

[DAVE] And there was the weather too…

[JEREMY] Yeah, it was raining and all kinds of weird stuff going on…

[DAVE] It was kind of weird first of all because of the sports and stuff – it kind of didn’t really fit together. But there were some good bands and that was the good thing.

[JEREMY] And everything was a little all over the place too…

[DAVE] But we had fun still… What’s your take on internet piracy? Who’s the big loser in all this?

[JEREMY] I don’t know, I don’t really care too much. See for me, for our band when we came out, we put up some stuff and mp3s and whatnot and I think that overall, having different people downloading it helped us out a lot at that time. But you’ve always heard those stories about bands like METALLICA going to court with Napster and… I mean, I can see where they’re coming from because they’ve put their life into what they do and there’s a lot of money involved, so there’s both sides of the story so there’s no clear cut answer cause it helps out a lot of the younger bands that are starting, just to get your name out there. I mean, who cares! If you’re selling that many CDs, it helps you get everywhere. I remembe when we were recording our demo, all of a sudden we were getting emails from the Netherlands and places like that so at that time it was like, “Whoa! There’s people in Europe who know who we are!” It was crazy! So without the internet that woulndn’t have happened. So I think that helped us out.

[CATH] No, it’s true cause you know, evern four or five years ago you’d go check out a band’s website and all you would find was stuff – now you’ve got mp3s and all kinds of things and it’s really cool.

[JEREMY] Yeah! And everything changes so fast too…

[DAVE] And even the main income for bands is in record sales, so somewhere it’s good…

[JEREMY] I mean, yeah, it affects the bottom line for a lot of people and I think that the people who are the craziest about it all are the labels… but I mean labels… they’re doing a lot of money as it is so I dfon’t think they should be complaining too much!


[DAVE] And yeah, how’s your relationship with Smallman Records – is it like a big familiy?

[JEREMY] Smallman is good, yeah. Actually, I’m gonna see Amelia from Smallman, she should be here tonight.

[DAVE] She’s here tonight?!

[CATH] No way!

[JEREMY] Yeah, she’s showing up around seven o’clock so she might even be here already.

[DAVE] Tell her I say hi!

[JEREMY] OK! But yeah, we’ve had a good working relationship with them cause we were with a diffrerent label [Facedown] with our record previous to this one. When we signed with Victory, we wanted to have it licensed to a canadian label here in Canada for many diffrerent reasons: I think a lot of labels they just see Canada as another state, so they don’t necessarily know how to advertise and promote it here.

[CATH] Is it really much different here and in the States?

[JEREMY] I don’t think there’s too much difference but I think that there’s just a lot of legal issues, stuff related to sipping… Just stuff that they don’t always like dealing with. You know in Canada we have a lot of change that they don’t have in the States… You know, like Exclaim!, this and that... they just don’t know how to advertise up here, so it’s good to be dealing with a label that understands the market properly. So that was the reason we hooked up with Smallman, and plus they’re from our hometown, so… With their office being maybe a ten minute walk from my house, it makes it a lot easier when you’re trying to deal with certain things, you do that in person rather than on the phone or email.

[DAVE] And unless I’m mistaken, you guys weren’t on the Warped Tour this year?

[JEREMY] We were on tour and then we got a phone call saying this band was dropped off and would we be interested in finishing up their leg of the Warped Tour – it didn’t work out so we did one Warped Tour show in Calgary and that was all. We were like, we can do this one but we can’t do the other, so… We just had some other commitements, we had almost finished the tour when we got the offer, we had about three days to decide, a lot of us really wanted to do it but other people had different commitements and stuff like that so we were only able to do the one date. Hopefully it’s something we can do in the future – I don’t know if we’ll be able to do it this year but I hope so!

[CATH] You enjoyed the experienced, though?

[JEREMY] Yeah, I mean it looks like a lot of fun this big travelling festival, you get to meet a lot of bands that you become friends with over time and things can get pretty crazy sometimes.

[DAVE] So you guys are gonna be on tour for the next couple months?

[JEREMY] Yeah, right now we’re doing this, then we’re doing the Europe thing in November, we’ll take a month or two off in the winter to kind of relax and recover a little bit… I don’t think we’re gonna be relaxing too much though, gotta start thinking ahead for the next record!

[CATH] And when can we expect that?...Any idea at all?...

[JEREMY] Um, no… not at all! I wish I could give you something but I can’t…

[CATH] Aww… fine, we’ll just be patient…

[JEREMY] But no, we definitely appreciate all the support we get from this city cause I have to say this is probably my favourite city in the world… and I’ve been to a lot of them!

[CATH] Alright…

[JEREMY] Yeah, I can use the money that I’m used to, I can get away with English, but at the same time I feel like I’m part of a different culture which I always like – you get kind of bored of the same old same old in Winnipeg, so…


Merci à Jeremy pour avoir pris le temps de discuter avec nous et à Amelia de Smallman Records pour avoir rendu cette entrevue possible.

- Cath

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