Say your name, what band you’re in and what you do
My name is Jordan Blilie and I am one of the singers in the Blood Brothers.
So you guys on tour right now with Akimbo, and just got off tour with AFI, so how is it different being on a tour of that magnitude.
It’s like worlds apart. You go from playing on some huge stage that is like 10 ft high with monitors, and lighting rigs and curtains and all that to playing on a floor with kids in your face. The reason that we do those tours where we open for bigger bands is you get to play for like two hundred and fifty kids who have never seen something like us before and they actually take something out of it. And then when we come by ourselves to their city they get to see a new world that they haven’t been exposed to like they get to see a type of show that they didn’t know existed already, and we sort of invite them into our community and how thing work here and letting people know that there’s an alternative to like stardom and . .
Like forty dollar ticket prices?
Yea – exactly.
Do you think that after something like the Glassjaw and American Nightmare tour can you tell a growth in fan base?
Yeah you can tell. I mean I can tell like right off the bat. The kids that come to a show with a Blood Brothers shirt on are the ones who have seen us with Glassjaw or any of those other bands. They are the kids that come up and ask for an autograph. Or something. You know, I think that it’s cool there will be like five or ten in a group of two hundred or so, you know it varies. They automatically feel a little out numbered like it’s something a little bit foreign so they’re sort of forced to take things in and keep an open mind about things. But it think it’s been positive so far, when we go on tour we still feel it is very personal and we are able to talk to people on a human level.
I know tonight you had a problem with fighting and stuff. Do you guys see that often? Your band is different from the “macho hardcore band” in the scene right now, but do you feel like you hold some kind of responsibility where you make sure that shit doesn’t happen?
Exactly – most definitely. We’ll stop and say something when we see things are getting out of control. All of us have been going to shows since we were like 12 and all of us know how it feels to go to shows and be bullied by some meat head who just wants to beat you up, and cause a scene and hurt people. I think that if you’re playing shows that are excluding half of your audience or making it so half the people can’t enjoy the show it’s really missing the entire point of playing music. Um we’re conscientious of providing a safe environment where everyone has a good time and still looks out for each other.
I think there was a point in the set where-
Leather pants, yeah.
Him and his girlfriend got in a fight with some other girl and he pushed her and something happened and they couldn’t resolve it she didn’t like his pants or something like that happened.
Yeah, I saw something. I tried to say something. But other than that I think it was alright.
Yeah you know the saying one bad apple spoils the bunch.
If it came down to it would you rather play like the opener or second spot for a bigger band or something over and over again or just tour the rest of your life.
I would tour the rest of my life.
It doesn’t matter with who or what . . . ?
No, no. It doesn’t matter. I mean we’re used to sleeping on floors in sleeping bags, and we’re used to booking our own tours, and getting to know people. You know it is the environment we grew up in, and it’s the environment that we’ve learned the most from and got the most out of, it’s the one that slowly creates the most musical development and progression and community. And so as soon as we feel that our shows are getting impersonal or that people can’t come up to us and talk to us when they want then we need to reevaluate what we are doing with our lives. Right now we just need to take it day by day and enjoy as much as possible each day that we have the people that we meet and everything like that. We really have no idea what is going to happen in the future, with the label, with the records, or whatever, so . . .
What do you see happening say that if for some reason you start to get massive airplay and it blows up, do you see your self forced to move away from playing in a place like this and going to a bigger venue or would you try to stay as close knit as possible?
Well if you look at it here, you could build this area up and make a bigger stage and it would work. You know there are always ways to make it work. There are ways to stay in the indie world and remember the people you’ve met from the beginning.
Do you feel obligated to do that?
I do. You know I really do. I’ve seen enough bands come and go, and seen bands grow and forget who they were, and that’s not who we are. We’re still the same people still doing the same thing that we always have playing music together. If it comes to a point… I am not going to try to discriminate over who comes to out shows but, you know, If we were at a show that had like a thousand kids or whatever, I just want to make sure we have diverse bills that included some bands that weren’t as aggressive, some bands that have the same out look on music as us, some female bands, just some bands that include all aspects of life, all aspects of whatever you want to call it, different cultures, whatever.
Well to mention your label, you’re on Artist Direct, most people consider it a major label, it’s owned by BMG or something like that, but it seems like it’s been a really friendly, but also there’s rumors that there’s problems. So I guess, do you consider ArtistDirect major?
I consider it major. They have major label distribution. I think an independent label is more about a state of mind. It’s more about how you use it, your background, and you’re part of something. The people at Artist Direct in my eyes are not even an inde label. You know they are our type of people and well - they are a major label. They are there to put out records and sell as many records as humanly possible. When we made our last record we recorded thirteen songs, twelve of them were on the album one of them went on a B side, nothing was tampered with whatsoever, and we put it out. So, we couldn’t really argue with that situation. It was the first time in out lives we were presented with the choice as to whether or not we wanted to make this our life. You know, we’re all twenty, twenty one, and we were like what the fuck. We have a career now. I don’t think we compromised anything… It was like we quit our jobs, we practiced everyday, we worked on our record for like 5 months, March On Electric Children took like a year to write because we were all working and to get it recorded took like 20 fucking weeks. You know I think that people keep up with what we do with our lives. I would like to open up like a dialogue on our message board of something.
Back to the record, it got recorded a long time ago. Some random guy sent me a copy of it back in September and I was shocked. I mean I had no idea that it was coming out, when it was coming out, I mean everyone who wanted to hear it could have heard it way before the release date. Did that bother you at all since you put so much time into it?
Um, I’m not bothered. It is sort of a fact of life, you know? Things are going to get out on the internet. Kids who want to burn it are going to burn it. The kids who want to buy it are going to buy it. We would hope that those who burned it and got it earlier would want to buy it for like the artwork and stuff, or get it on vinyl or whatever. We just hope the people that burn it don’t expect us to send our lyrics to them via email or whatever . You know, it’s not going to work like that. It would be nice if they would support us or whatever. But it’s nice also to play your new songs and see people singing along to them, before the record even comes out. You know it gets our eyebrows raised a little bit. But you know what, it doesn’t really matter to me. I mean I got a little bit mad at first but you know, but after a while I realized there are more important things to worry about. It’s still there, it’s still available, so whatever.
Back to the artwork, somebody had a question. Who did the artwork for the website and the album? It was very innovative.
Cody did all the artwork. He messed around with some stuff, did it on the computer, whatever. There’s absolutely no one other than him who could have done that artwork. But the label put together some stuff and we were like, no, no. We have our own artwork.
Some people wanted to know will there ever be a Blood Brothers/Waxwing tour?
Well I wouldn’t say never. That’s never really been presented as an option. I know that Rocky has two kids to feed, and our band is the same situation as well. Waxwing plays every so often in Seattle. I mean it might be kind of cool. I would enjoy it. It might make some kids day, but… We can talk about it. Well if the money was right for Waxwing, you know, because right now we are not really in a position where we can offer enough money for our supporting bands. It’s a little bit frustrating but . . .
Well if money wasn’t an issue, what would your dream line up be right now? I mean if you were on tour with like a four band lineup for six months. Who would you want to have on there?
God, there’s so many. Umm… Hmmm… Well my sister is in a band called Shoplifting. Which came out of Chromatics. So Shoplifting I would love to take. Um, I will always want to tour with True North . Um, let’s see here, Le Tigre, Erase Errata… I’d want to tour with the Gossip, the Get Hustle, The Locust I would always want to tour with… This is turning into a festival. (laughs)
Speaking of touring, someone asked, what did you think of The Used and other bands that you have been touring with. I am not asking you to bad mouth bands, but there are bands you know that just have different demographics than you.
Well some people come from a different world, a world where I don’t necessarily want to be associated with but the Used are people who are pleasant to tour with and are very nice guys. You know I just don’t really see parallels between our music and theirs. I respected the fact that all their fans were so open to us. They had a very young fanbase. They were very accepting of us. I thought that was really cool.
Would you do it again? Would you ever go on tour with them again?
No. We hadn’t heard them before...
That kinda sucks.
Yeah, you know it’s a different thing.
So now on to the stupid questions. How do you feel now that ODB is free?
Yes. He got out like 2 or 3 days ago.
What? Are you serious? Holy shit! Oh fuck man. That’s awesome. Wasn’t he like dropped from his label and everything? Mark!! Mark our drummer loves this man.
Yeah he just got out. His new name is Dirt McGirt.
When me, Mark and our tour manager had to drive from Detroit to Seattle on our last tour, our AFI one, and everyone else kinda flew home, and bolted, I listened to fucking 36 Chambers so much. It’s a fucking phenomenal record. I am so excited.
Would you go on tour with him? I mean right now Queens of the Stone Age and Red Hot Chili Peppers are on tour and Snoop Dogg is opening.
Yeah. Would you do it if ODB was like, “Yo, I love the new album”?
I would do it if it was in the context of a greater fest. It’s like I’m a little over being called “fag” for thirty days in a row. I really don’t know if we could make it with a hip hop artist. If Lollapalooza ever got cool again then maybe.
Well would you ever do Warped Tour?
No. Never ever ever. I will never do any tour that allows the Marines to recruit kids on site. I find that disgusting, especially since they call themselves a punk tour. Never. ever.
Last time I was there, Boy Sets Fire was playing, and they saw the Marines tent and went on for like 15 minutes about why the hell are they here.
Yea. I find it absolutely disgusting. I would never do it. Ever.
Define “sasscore”. It’s been going around our website. You guys have been deemed a “sasscore band” and it doesn’t mean anything bad. It is just that your music is sassy. So if someone asked what it was, how would you define it?
I’m not going to define it but I will tell you that I like that a lot better then screamo.
How do you like it when your band is labeled as screamo?
I hate the word screamo. I absolutely hate it. I hate the term itself. I think it’s lazy journalism, when people try to modify or meld together a group of people or sound.
What other adjectives would you use, like how would you label your music?
I would kind of equate all the bands that are on No Idea Records. So if I was describing True North, or Palatka I would say like it’s kinda like that border hardcore/No Idea Records sound.
A lot of your song titles and lyrics kind of tie together, like now Burn Piano Island, Burn, and your first album... Do you find yourself constantly writing a theme in your lyrics or does it just kind of happen?
With Burn Piano Island, Burn, on a very surface level as to why we wanted to call it that is that we wanted our album released on a bigger label to be something where kids could from a couple records back and identify with and feel like they were part of something that has evolved over time, and that we hadn’t forgot them.
Okay, other stupid questions. If you had to pick - gongcore or piratecore?
That’s what I would pick too. Robots or Ninjas?
This was asked. I don’t make these up.
What about like robot-ninjas?
Or would you rather have pirate-robot, or robot-pirate?
I don’t know. I think I would rather have robot-pirate because it would be like Pirates of the Caribbean Disney Land type thing and it would be fun.
Back to the Ninja/Robots?
I would rather have Ninja-Robot.
Do you like Donkey Kong?
I – I – I don’t . . . no. I don’t like anything that I am not good at and I am not good at video games.
But that’s old school. Kids grew up on that.
Yeah. I liked Excitebike.
You built your own courses
I fucked kids up with my own courses. They didn’t know what to do.
That was a hard game.
I put like 5 of those ramp things in a row. Kids didn’t know what I was doing.
Do you plan on releasing any more singles in the UK?
I want to release a single in the US. I think Second Nature may release like a 7 inch or something, whatever single it may be. There are a lot of kids who can’t get our UK single with Pink Tarantulas here so they are forced to buy it on ebay.
Although it is on mp3.com right now.
I don’t know who put it up there, but the official one is up to download.
Haha. We don’t know how to play it.
When it comes to your set do you find yourselves sticking to the same type of formula each night?
It depends. We’ll usually write a set of like 11 songs. And if the show is like going absolutely phenomenal, and everything is going quickly and the audience is still with us, we usually add more stuff, or we’ll do like requests of whatever. We try to mix it up like a little bit, and we try to have a balance with like our new stuff and our old stuff.
Do you ever play USA Nails?
Yea. We play it up to a point. You know I think it’s too long. I mean a bunch of our other songs are under three minutes.
I think that’s my favorite song off the record.
What do you have to say about people calling you Refused rip offs?
I didn’t really know people called us Refused rip offs.
Well who would you say your influences are?
Our influences go a lot further than fucking Refused. Um, we weren’t influenced in any way by Refused. Our influences would be like Drive Like Jehu, Angel Hair, Highway 61, Botch . . .
So your influences came from a lot of San Deigo and a lot of Seattle?
Yep. That’s what we were listening to when we first started out, and what ended up influencing us.
Are you a fan of Hot Snakes and stuff?
Yeah, I like them, not as much as Jehu.
So along the lines of bands, who would you recommend that people keep their eye on or have a lookout for?
Shoplifting. Shoplifting is going to be amazing.
Not just because of your sister?
No, it’s because they are just amazing.
Do they have a label right now?
No. Um, I think The Locust is gonna get bigger. Who else, um . . The Liars, Q and Not U, True North..
Do you like Army of Ponch?
I haven’t heard them.
Really? I recommend that album. It’s really good. It’s like everything you can combine from No Idea Records. All the screaming and more angular aspects of bands.
American Nightmare is gonna be huge, too.
You mean Give Up The Ghost?
Well I would never call them Give Up the Ghost. They’re American Nightmare.
Do you plan on doing any UK touring before you play the Download festival this summer?
We’re actually not playing that anymore. But we are going to do a ton of festivals all of August with Pretty Girls Make Graves.
They are a great band. That will be an awesome show. Well you guys got placed in the hardcore scene when you are more of a progressive band. When you look at the hardcore scene there is a lot of homophobia and stuff like that, so how do you find yourself dealing with that, and do you think it’s your responsibility to educate?
Of course. You know, it’s like when we did that tour with Glassjaw last year, I was in awe of some of the mentality of the kids going to the shows. It was sickening. And one night I was pretty wasted or something and I was like I love you guys and I love being on tour with you guys but your fans are fucking awful. Because every third night or so you would hear “get off the stage fag” it was horrible, like the lowest common denominator you could ever imagine. And the way that we deal with that is, we don’t take shit. We’ll flip shit back, embarrass people and make them feel stupid. We’ll like blow kisses, rub our crotches even more, hump each other, whatever, suck on the microphone. You know all the stuff we normally do when we play on our own we just exaggerate it. Or just stare at kids. When they are talking shit you just stare at them, and it forces you to confront them personally. You know we will always confront it head on, there’s no place for it. Bands that don’t stand up have no right playing in a band if they are not going to confront that mentality.
Is that the biggest problem you see playing in the hardcore scene?
It’s one of them yes. I wouldn’t say like hardcore scene. I think we are talking about like two different kinds of hardcore scenes. And I think that one of the problems is general is the lack of female participation music and shows as a whole because I think that so many shows are just a fucking guy party you know, and it’s intimidating for women a lot of time, you know?
Well, I guess that’s all we have. Want to let people know how to get a hold of you?
To get a hold of us you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or thebloodbrothers.com
I just want to say thanks to the fans and thanks for their time, and thank people for the continued support. I know that a lot of people have questions about how we choose to live our lives, and are kind of skeptical about what we have chosen to do with our time and with our band but I think that if you take the time to have a conversation with us or go to our show you will see what we’re about. We’re still the same people we have always been, we still appreciate every second that we’re in this band, we don’t consider this coming to an end. We just live day by day, and go along, and fuck up and learn from that, and just go on.
Interview graciously transcribed by Katie Tompkins, the world's greatest woman. If you know her, tell her I want to marry her.