Protest The Hero (06 février 2008)
Le quintet de Whitby en Ontario, PROTEST THE HERO, lançait son deuxième album mardi dernier intitulé Fortress. On entend souvent dire qu'un deuxième album est crucial dans la carrière d'un groupe et c'est donc avec beaucoup d'anticipation qu'on attendait le retour de PTH sur CD. Avec plus de 6300 albums vendus la première semaine et l'album se classant numéro un au pays, on peut affirmer que le groupe a passé cette étape avec succès. PROTEST THE HERO sera de passage à Montréal ce samedi pour un spectacle à guichets fermés au Club Soda. PunkMeUp a eu la chance de s'entretenir avec la formation métal de l'heure…voici ce dont nous avons parlé:
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[MELISSA]: Fortress has just been released…are you relieved the album is finally out? Does it take some weight off of your shoulders?
[PTH]: Yes. It got pushed back a couple of times, and it was beginning to get frustrating. More weight was lifted from my shoulders when we finished recording the album than it’s actual release.
[MELISSA]: Why did you guys decide to work with Julius again? What is it about working with him that works for you guys?
[PTH]: Julius Butty is a supernatural force who would have enough cohones to shave Zeus’ beard should he ever pass out at a party. He just gets what we do and makes us sound way better than we actually are. We all have a secret crush on that fella.
[MELISSA]: Where did you draw inspiration for this record? What would you say influenced you? Did any media (other than music) like books, movies, plays etc. influence the writing of this album?
[PTH]: We try to take inspiration from whatever we can. Whether it’s video game music or the rhythm we stole from an idling Harley Davidson, anything is worth a scrutinizing listen.
[MELISSA]: Would you say you guys are perfectionists? Do you spend a lot of time nit-picking when working on new material?
[PTH]: To some extent, but we have learned over time that if you don’t fall in love with a riff or song right away, it doesn’t necessarily mean it stinks. Letting music grow on you is the most rewarding part of listening.
[MELISSA]: When listening to Fortress, you realize that it’s definitely different than Kezia (vocals, instrumentation, orchestral feel/sound, etc.)…what would you say is the biggest difference with your first record?
[PTH]: We tried to think the songs through a little more thoroughly this time. We take pride in our transitions (which are often cast out as horrible hahah). We took more time making sure the songs flowed better than Kezia. With that said, we hoped the album would have more of a flow overall as well.
[MELISSA]: The band’s sound is always evolving…from your EP A Calculated Use Of Sound to now Fortress, there’s a really big difference. Do you think you’ve found your sound now?
[PTH]: I hope we never find our sound. The day that we are fully satisfied with our songs is the day we probably quit. I like where we are, but I see us getting better with time.
[MELISSA]: I’ve been told by Universal Records that your release is one of their priorities this winter and that they will really be pushing hard on the release. What do you think of this big promo/marketing machine that is now behind you guys?
[PTH]: We are grateful that a company as powerful as Universal Music would even consider helping us out. We realize we aren’t the easiest band to market – see Tim’s face for proof. But if they can help us reach some folks we couldn’t have before, that rules.
[MELISSA]: Luke and Tim are doing guitar clinics in Toronto and Edmonton and Moe will be doing a drum clinic in Calgary…do you guys like doing that kind of stuff? Is it a way for you to stay close to your ever-growing fan base?
[PTH]: We haven’t really done anything like that before. I have thought about teaching guitar, but am wary of my lack of theoretical knowledge. It will be interesting to see how the clinics go actually. I would prefer to give advice on writing rather than technique, because mine is far from correct. BUT, I would like to pursue more clinic work in the future if possible.
[MELISSA]: Do you think it’s important to be creative not only in the writing of songs but also in other parts of the job? (promo, marketing, touring etc)
[PTH]: Yes! It is something we are still getting the hang of, but it seems like most of the band has a real interest in our success and promotion. We ran our online webstore on our own since it’s beginning. And, sure it’s slower and less efficient than an online merch vendor, but you know you’re directly supporting the band when we’re the ones sending you gear.
[MELISSA]: It seems as though it took a while before the band started getting video/radio support with Kezia. However with Bloodmeat, you got that support right away…how much does that help you guys?
[PTH]: Tons. We hear about people seeing us for the first time on Much Music and MTV…which, is proof it creates an unprecedented awareness.
[MELISSA]: With the previous record, you guys spent loads of time on the road. Do you still want to tour as much with Fortress? Do you think that’s the key to success?
[PTH]: Sure, touring is part of it. But it ain’t the glamorous holiday people think it is. It’s hard work and stressful – not to mention you’re away from the people you care about for months on end. I would say less – why should we lose our personal lives over an industry standard?
[MELISSA]: Is longevity something PROTEST THE HERO would like to obtain?
[PTH]: Absolutely not. Make enough money, live fast and then die. Just kidding.
Un gros merci à PROTEST THE HERO et à Jean-François de Universal qui a rendu cet entretient possible.