|The new album
Speakeasy is about to be released. Compared to the other albums, I think you moved further
away from your hardcore roots. How would you describe the music on Speakeasy?
As you point out in your review, we aren't
trying to re-write our past albums. This album is different mainly because we added
another guitar player, and with him came another perspective in writing. As far as
hard-core roots, that really isn't anything that we have tried hard to associate ourselves
with. Yes, we write heavy music, but we are also interested in melody and harmony more
than we have been in the past. We are like a lot of bands in that we want to write music
that pleases us and lines up with our tastes. That will inevitably leave fans of one phase
of your career looking elsewhere to find that sound, but it also opens doors to fans that
wouldn't have listened to you in the past. The music on speakeasy is more melodic and more
harmonic than our past albums, but we all feel this is the natural third album for our
band. We want to look forward in our music, and we think we have done this on Speakeasy.
As you said you added another
guitar-player. Interestingly, guitarist Jeff Bellew left the band. As I understood it, he
left the band because he got married. Was that something the band knew all along or was it
a sudden decision?
We felt it was coming for a
while, but it was something that we never discussed until he was ready to leave. I
wouldn't say he left the band simply because he got married, but I'm sure it was part of
How then did you, as a band,
receive his departure? It's maybe a big word to say it was an abrupt departure, because it
was something that was not discussed, but I can imagine that it left the band behind with
some hard feelings as you shared so much together in the past. So, how did you, as a band,
At first, to me it felt like my brother came up
to me and said he didn't want to be in my family anymore. But after thinking about how the
band functioned over the previous year, it was obvious to me that his heart wasn't in it.
The mood of the band lightened considerably after he left, because we were back to being
focused on where were going again. We remain friends with Jeff.
I read on the Stavesacre website
that he's replaced by Neil Samoy. Can you tell more about him and his place within the
Neil used to play for a band
called Stairwell, that was signed to a small label here in California. He fits our group
very well, and we are looking forward to writing songs with him. He is an excellent
musician and he's fun to be around, which is important to us. We have to enjoy each
other's company for long periods of time when we tour, so it was important that his
personality fits with ours.
One comment of Mark Salomon is:
"Doing Stavesacre has felt like a war, but it's a war that we've made it
through." How do you feel about playing in the band?
Being in a band requires a lot of
patience and commitment. Things are never easy from a business point of view, people
always disappoint you, and your band has to be equally focused on getting through the
rough times. Doing this album was very difficult due to circumstances beyond our control
that had absolutely nothing to do with music. I think Mark may have been referring to the
album when he said that. But we are all great friends, and I love being in this band.
But to call it a war is quite
something. What circumstances do you mean?
Our album took over seven months
from start to finish. We usually take four to five weeks. Many factors beyond our control
made it impossible to work faster. It felt like those things were actually trying to kill
our band. Our producer was ill the entire time, we were bumped from the studio numerous
times, and it was impossible for us to take our masters and go elsewhere because of the
format we were recording in.
In late Summer of this year you
did a tour with Puller with thirty dates I think. How was that?
Fun. Puller is a great band, and
we have toured with them several times in the past. We played with another cool band
called Denison Mars, and a great band called Train Dodge. We played mostly small, dirty
clubs. It was very rock and roll.
During a tour there are always
many things happening both good and bad. Can you share with us a funny anecdote?
Our van blew its engine in
Colorado back in September, and it is still there today! Do any of you know how to fix a
Ford Club Wagon?
Last question. For the rest of
the year I saw only one concert posted on the website. I also read that you want to
continue a busy schedule of touring. So, what can we expect of Stavesacre?
We will be touring in
January/February with Project 86 here in the states. We just licensed our album to Day Glo
Records in Stockholm, so I imagine that we will be touring in Europe again in the spring
or summer. We intend to work very hard to support this album, because it has been
such a labor of love, and we are all very proud of it. Anyone interested in dates for the
band can contact our agency at www.davdon.com for
information. We would love to come and visit you in your town!