From the girl who brought you the Guttermouth interview, here's one with Steve, singer of Canadian skatepunk band Belvedere. Click READ MORE for the goods, and click here to read a review of the concert this interview came from.
ANGIE: First, you guys have been really busy right, Warped Tour and also Europe with the Satanic Surfers. Is that how you met Snitch, in Europe for this tour?
STEVE: Yeah, well the Union label go over there quite often and Snitch is from Switzerland and they kind of all work together so they brought them over a few times. They were supposed to come with us on this tour but didnât make it.
A: Yeah, I heard. What happened?
S: I think one of them got really sick but Iâm not exactly sure about the whole story.
A: So they didnât even play any dates?
S: No, which is really too bad cause theyâre a really good band.
A: Damn, I would have liked to have seen them. So right now you guys are working on a split with Downway.
S: Yes, we just finished recording it; I actually have a copy of it in the van.
A: You and Downway have always been close bands right. One of your first tours was with them rightâ¦
S: Oh yeah, weâre really good friends with those guys we both live in Calgary and theyâre the first band that we really got along with and we just kind of started touring.
A: And I heard the split is being produced by Brian Baker (Bad Religion) and Steve Hansgen (Minor Threat) was it cool working with them?
S: Yeah, it was great, they were really cool guys. They were so mellow and laidback and we were just all stressed out and we didnât know what to do, they were just like whatever. Yeah, they did a great job at everything, I know itâs probably sound wise, are best stuff yet, soâ¦
A: I canât wait to hear it. So after this tour, whatâs next for Belvedere, any missions?
S: Umm, after this tour itâs vacation time cause, we never have a vacation really, I donât know if you noticed but weâre always on tour so yeah, we go home until probably mid February and then weâre going back to Europe.
A: Are you releasing anything else soon, aside from the split?
S: Well, the split will be out the third week of February but January weâre right back to work and weâre going to start writing another full length album that will probably be out before the summer, hopefully so yeah weâre pretty busyâ¦
A: Yeah you are, itâs insane and your drummer situationâ¦
S: Itâs all taken care of, Graham. Heâs totally in this, heâs permanent and heâs by far the best drummer weâve ever played with.
A: Cause itâs kind of always been a problem for you guys right?
S: It has been for the last year and a half to two years, since Jason Walters left. We had Chris then Chris didnât work out, so we had a replacement, hey thatâs Graham, say hi! Um yeah we had a replacement from Pennsylvania Joey, he was on the tours with the Suicide Machines, Warped Tour and Europe and he was really cool. He filled in for us while we were on the search and we tried out about a dozen different drummers and Graham won! He made it, I donât know if thatâs a good thing to him or not but heâs in either way.
A: I heard too, that you do all your bookings and you donât have an agent?
S: We used too up until recently. But weâve had a couple now actually for awhile now. I still book shows but Duncan from Union Label Group books all our shows in Canada and Royal Flush Entertainment does all our stuff in the States. But I still do some shows and I helped with a chunk of this tour soâ¦
A: Thatâs means you deal with the promoters everything, the shit of it allâ¦
S: Yes, I keep busy, so when Iâm not on tour I usually do that soâ¦
A: Are any of the fans surprised to hear youâre from Canada?
S: I wouldnât say their surprised but they definitely had a good time. Every show in Europe was amazing. The Satanic Surfer shows were good the No Use For A Name shows were great, all the shows were great. We really had fun and the kids were just going crazy and Iâd never been to Europe before so we were all stocked about it.
A: Your big cross Canadian tour was with Strung Out and Bad Religionâ¦
S: Yeah, that was the first big one back in 1999, we had done a lot of Western U.S touring and Canadian touring, we had probably been on the road almost a year and a half before that but it was the first time we went all the way out to Nova Scotia.
A: I heard that Strung Out were infamous for pulling pranks, did you guys ever become victims?
S: I think they probably became more victims to our pranks, lol. No, they were cool, we didnât really have a whole prank session but all those guys were such great guys, Chris, Jordan, Jake theyâre really cool guys. They played the Sno Jam in Calgary and we keep in touch as much as possible.
A: Um, your new songs off âTâwas Hell Said Former Childâ are so fucking technical, Iâm sorry but you blew away your other albumsâ¦
A: Do you think thatâs cause you work so much more on your songs now being that music is such a big part of your lifestyle now or youâve all just grown as musicians, got better on guitar?
S: I mean, I think itâs a few different things. Weâre not really trying to go out and make a technical album, cause I donât think thatâs our thing, we have a really nice balance between catchy songs but also with technical stuff in it too, but I mean when âBecause No One Stopped Usâ that was 1998 and thatâs quite awhile ago, almost 5 years ago. Every album weâre trying to do things differently, we donât want to put out the same album. I think when people listen to our albums it still sounds like us but itâs just different.
A: You are one of the only bands, were you usually hear their first album and youâre like, this is the best and the other albums arenât as good, but with you guys Iâm just like whatâs going to be next!
S: Thatâs cool, Iâm glad to hear people think our stuff gets better, because I feel it gets better too.
A: Iâve never seen a band grow so much from one album to the next.
S: We spend a lot of time separately writing, I have an 8-track at home and I write stuff, and when Jasonâs home he writes all the time and Scott too. It works out really good that way cause then we all have a lot of ideas. Weâll write stuff then bring it to the rest of the band and weâll all throw are two cents in and itâs always a better song after everybodyâs kind of tossed into it. We work really well together and Iâm really stocked about how the new stuff is going to turn out. I hope kids like the new stuff, it is different than the stuff we put out before but every album is different, I think its stuff that maybe people might not expect but at the same time I think theyâll probably expect it. I donât think itâs too far off.
A: To elaborate on âRepetition Rejectionâ do wish you ever could sign off, just say fuck it allâ¦
S: Sign off, um, just get out of it?
S: No itâs too much fun, it really is, I mean you get home sick, you get tired and I mean you get burned out cause pretty much since the Mad Caddies tour last year weâve been on tour so weâre definitely burnt out. But thereâs so many opportunities coming up, weâve had offers to go to Japan and Brazil itâs kind of like why not just to keep going but itâs not a serious thought as of yet.
A: Do you think it will happen though?!
S: I think we might go to Japan before the summer butâ¦ We have two records out in Japan and our new one got released in Brazil, so weâre hoping that theyâll bring us down.
A: Umm, well thatâs about it, any final words of wisdom before signing offâ¦
S: I donât know, maybe if youâre going to be in a band definitely tour because you like it cause it usually takes about 10yrs to get anywhere which is pretty much where weâre headed so, itâs been about seven years now and you just really have to love it, weâve been playing shows on the road for so many years now and everyday we still love it, if not go and find something else to do and for god sakes play fast, Iâm sick of bands slowing downâ¦
A: Thatâs awesome and why we all admire Belvedere! Well, thank you so muchâ¦
S: Thank you.
A: And good luck on your tour.