May 9 2013 – Very few things are as exciting as finding something new you love. Much like archeologists that dig to find hidden treasures, we here at T-Mak World really enjoy trying to find new bands that we love. Once we find such bands, we approach our favourites to request interviews for our Emerging Artist Spotlight series. Today we set our focus on a band from Toronto named THE BLEEDING LIGHTS. All bands we talked to are asked similar questions to each other so we can get to know them better. The description on THE BLEEDING LIGHTS’ website reads:
Hard, heavy and melodic, these Toronto rockers have been compared to Alice In Chains, Stone Temple Pilots, and Soundgarden to name a few. Features members of Tenth Planet, whose previous album was named Record of the Year in Rock Tribune magazine (Holland). Formed in early 2011, THE BLEEDING LIGHTS quickly went to work writing and demoing material at Cherry Beach studios in Toronto , and in July 2011 went into The Pocket Studios with producer Mike Turner (Crash Karma and ex-guitarist for Our Lady Peace) to begin work on their first album. Additional production was done in Melbourne, Australia by Mark Kelson at Kelsonic Studios. Mixing was handled by Mark Makoway (ex-guitarist for Moist) and Mastered by Pete Letros at Wreckhouse Mastering (Toronto).
Here is what they had to say to us:
1. Hey BLEEDING LIGHTS, thanks for taking the time out to talk to us. Let’s start off with the obligatory introductions. Who’s in the band and what instrument does everyone rock?
Bleeding Lights: The band is made up of Brian Paul on guitars, Owen Kelly on Vocals, Glenn Neath on drums, and Nic Vurro on bass.
2. How about the history of the band, when did you get started and how did it happen?
(Brian): Me and the rhythm section have been playing together for a long time now, probably since about 2003…so ten years. We were all in the band Tenth Planet – that’s how we met. A couple of years ago, during an extended Tenth Planet hiatus, we decided we wanted to do some writing. We did some searching around online and came in contact with Owen, and from there we started the writing and jamming process.
3. Who are some of your musical influences?
(Brian): I learned to play guitar during the grunge era, so many of my influences, definitely when it comes to music writing, come from bands of the mid 90s, like Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Stone Temple Pilots, etc. In particular, Jerry Cantrell and Dean Deleo. My favourite guitarist is definitely Tony Iommi though, hands down.
(Owen): Singing is actually a fairly recent pick up for me. I think I sang my first good note at age 26, so my influences are still growing by the day. But the vocalists that I really appreciate and try to take notes from are Richard Patrick (Filter, Army of Anyone), Ben Burnley (Breaking Benjamin), Maynard Keenan (Tool, A Perfect Circle), and Mike Underdown (Ten Years). Though I don’t think I can take much in terms of tone from Anberlin’s fantastic singer, Stephen Christian, I do love what he does with his lyrics.
(Nic): Some of my favorites range from Black Sabbath to Pearl Jam to the Police to Type O Negative. As for bass player influences, Geezer Butler and Justin Chancellor are at the top for me.
4. So based on the above how would you describe your music to someone that has never heard it?
(Band): Well, now that the album is done and out, we have had to describe the music, and we describe it to people as post-grunge hard rock. There’s definitely a listenable quality to it that so many great melodic hard rock bands have now. But there are some elements in the album that could be described as carrying forward that Nu-metal sound, started by bands like Tool, Disturbed, Korn, and Deftones, which helped to pave the way for these melodic hard rock bands today.
5. Why should a music fan come and see your show instead of all the other choices available to them on any given night?
(Brian): Our music is written and developed to be performed live, first and foremost. I’m very cognizant of dynamics within an album, a live set, and even within the song. I’m a big proponent of the light and shade philosophy of music, and that type of thing works extremely well in a live environment.
(Owen): I’ve always admired the bands that gave something in addition to their phenomenal sound in the form of an energetic and memorable performance with something done a little uniquely.
(Glenn): We’re just getting set to take our album live to people, so something energetic and memorable is something that we’d like to try to bring to audiences as much as possible and think could stand out a lot from what bands on any given night offer.
6. What is your favorite single line of lyrics the band has written and why?
(Owen): The line right at the end of our song CANDLES is one of my favorites. “Tell the truth, does it hurt to be so strong?” It’s a personal one to me, as is the whole song, and it has a lot of truth in it that I think others can take from too. Being strong is often a hard thing to do, and it can hurt along the way to becoming strong. And being too strong in ways can also hurt you and others around you. It’s definitely the kind of personal, reflective line that can turn around to become personal for anyone else that I’m excited to write more of.
7. What does 2013 hold for you?
(Band): Now that the record is done, it will really be all about promotion, getting the word out on the record, and playing shows. We’re very happy with the way it turned out, we had some very talented people help us out with it, from production all the way to mastering, and we think that sonically, it’s very well produced. You can crank it and rock out to it, but there’s also lots of ear candy type things on there that sound great at low volumes with the headphones on. That said, we’re always working on music and demoing things, so we’d like to get right back into writing and working on the next record. Brian has always wanted to do a Jar of Flies type acoustic ep, but hasn’t had the opportunity yet, so maybe that could happen in this band. But usually when a new record comes out like this one, you just want to get it out and about.
8. Imagine that you were asked to be the opener for any band’s world tour (both current and historical). Which band and tour would be your dream opening gig.
(Brian): I’d like to be the first band on for the Black Sabbath/Van Halen tour in 1978. A close second would be opening up for The Tea Party and Page/Plant back in 1995, mostly so I could see TWO violin bow solos in one night.
(Nic): I think the Metallica/Guns n’ Roses tour in ’92 would have been an adventure. No drama there.
9. What is the future of the music industry? With the concept of the album and physical CD’s facing extinction, how will we be consuming music in 10 years? Are the economics feasible for emerging artists?
(Brian): I knew the record industry was first in trouble back in 2005, when Dark New Day’s first record came out. I thought, if that record couldn’t make a band automatic stars, things were in trouble. With my last release, which was a Tenth Planet record, that’s ALL I cared about, and it created tension for Tenth Planet, because I knew the industry was toast, but we had spent a ton of money on the record, and really needed a major label deal in order to just get us out of debt. But now, I go into this knowing full well the chances of “making it” are as good as seeing Gremlins dressed as The Fonz come and have lunch with me at Thai Express this afternoon. I’m very aware of how things work these days. With that in mind, I think what you’re seeing now is, at least for me, an understanding that what I’m releasing is done strictly without any other pre-conceived notions about “making it”….meaning getting on a major label, being number 1 on the charts, being wooed by A&R guys, etc. “Making it” for me today means putting out a record that I can feel proud of, one that I would like to listen to. I love the process of writing, recording, and playing live. If anything above and beyond that happens, then it’s just gravy. It doesn’t mean I don’t want a ton of people to listen to the record, because I most certainly do. But if it only sells 25 copies, I’m absolutely okay with that. It’ll be like the Bon Jovi lyric, but just slightly altered: “I’ve seen 7 or 8 faces, and I rocked them all!”
10. Where can people get your music/CD, is it being sold anywhere?
(Band): Right now it’s availably digitally at Itunes, and will be popping up on other digital services over the next couple of weeks on spotify, amazon, etc. We should have the physical cd available hopefully by June. That will be available via www.cdbaby.com and at shows to start. We’ll be looking to get into other distribution models over the next few months. And we’re sure you’ll be able to download it off The Pirate Bay in a day or two.
11. At the end of 2012 we published our picks for top 10 albums of 2012. Lists like those are always a reflection of personal tastes so if you were making the list what are some albums you would you have had on it?
(Brian): I’d have to do some digging just to find out what came out last year, but I can give you my top 10 albums of all time!:
1 – Led Zeppelin (Physical Graffiti)
2 – Alice in Chains (Dirt)
3 – Black Sabbath (The Mob Rules)
4 – Stone Temple Pilots (Purple)
5 – Genesis (Duke)
6 – Iommi (Fused)
7 – Soundgarden (Superunknown)
8 – U2 (All That You Can’t Leave Behind)
9 – The Cardigans (Long Gone Before Daylight)
10 – Alice in Chains (Jar of Flies)
(Owen): Same as Brian. But here’s a list of my favorite albums that came out in the past few years:
1-Dead Sara (Dead Sara)
2-Chevelle (Hats off to the Bull)
3-Bruce Springsteen (Wrecking Ball)
4-Filter (The Trouble With Angels)
5-Van Halen (A Different Kind of Truth)
6-Army of Anyone (Self Titled)
7-James McMorrow (Early in the Morning)
8-Alter Bridge (AB III)
9-Volbeat (Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies)
10-Killing Joke (Self Titled)
12. Any closing remarks for our readers?
(Brian): Buy our record!
(Glenn & Nic): After your done doing what Brian said, come see our show!
(Owen): Couldn’t have said it better!
Thanks so much to THE BLEEDING LIGHTS. We hope that you can see them live. They are playing in the city this summer, with dates and locations being announced shortly.
The band’s website is landing shortly following the recent completion of the album and as you would expect they are on Twitter and Facebook. In the meantime check out their music here on iTunes and Sound Cloud.
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