Fresh from almost being arrested, Angie Lalonde returns and graces us with two new interviews, the first being with Shane, Bill, and Paul of Victory Records artists Silverstein. Click READ MORE to delve deep into these Canadians' collective psyche, or something.
ANGIE: So your latest release was entitled "When Broken Is Easily Fixed", what was that studio experience like compared to your previous ones?
SHANE: Um, I was the one there the entire time from the beginning till the endâ¦
A: How long was that?
S: It was like two months and it was pretty much, ten hours a day it was crazy.
PAUL: I was there for 80% of itâ¦
S: Oh yeah no I am not saying that, I just meant to say that I was there for every minute and it was like reeeally long and tedious, this recording. But I am really happy though that we spent the time because Iâm really happy with the way everything came out, but like at the end there, we had a deadline that at the last three days, it was three days straight, no sleep.
BILL: I fell asleep on the couch finally and woke up at four in the morning and thought wow I should actually go home.
S: Yeah man it was nuts, especially every night of that last week.
A: Where did you record?
S: We recorded it actually; well we did the beginning part, the drums and some bed tracks at a studio called Mount Fairview in Hamilton, ON and then we did the rest at our producerâs house.
B: He had actually just opened up a new studio and he had everything set-up in his basement, this really nice silent room for our vocals and stuff, he was really set-up it was really awesome.
A: Oh yeah sorry can you say your names and something just so I can tell whoâs talking on the recorderâ¦
S: Iâm Shane and Iâm the singer.
B: Iâm Bill and I play bass.
P: Iâm Paul and I play drums.
A: Itâs weird your voices all sound the same.
B: Okay well Paul you put on a British accent and you Shane put on a Chinese one and Iâll just talk normal.
S: Weâll just say our names before we say anything then youâll know
A: Victory basically gave you full control of this album, you even chose the person for the artwork.
B: Bill! Yesâ¦
S: No they gave us total control of everything, all the art-work was what we wanted to do, the music I mean Tony the owner called a few times but itâs not like they had the creative input.
P: Yeah, they didnât even know the songs until we sent them a CD, it was pretty good. They listened to the demo but they really let us do what we wanted to.
S: Which was pretty scary too cause like weâre sending them ten songs they only know a couple of them and we were like here ya go! And luckily of course they loved it over there, that was so great.
P: Yeah they were blown away, it was awesome.
A: So you guys were also a band that got signed basically based on the fact that you sent out a demo package?
S: Basically yeah, it wasnât quite that easy we knew, I have a friend that used to play drums in a band called âGradeâ who were on Victory and he called them and said you know check out this band. But it wasnât like he was negotiating the contract or anything he just made a call cause heâs friends with the people over there and said you know I know you guys have thousands of CDâs to listen to if you could just check out this oneâ¦?
B: This ones comingâ¦
P: I mean thatâs just how bands get signed you send them a press-kit and actually someone will look at it.
A: So being a Canadian band and being on a U.S label, was it scary your first time out there, not knowing what the reception would be like?
P: It was just totally different, like an international market where for most U.S bands thatâs their home, where they sell their most records, where their biggest fan-bases, itâs a huge population right so itâs a really big advantage being from there but being an international band itâs a totally different market and you gotta work your way in there. Just as if weâre going over to Europe for the first time.
A: How were your first shows there?
S: Well, we actually did our first American tour before our record came out.
B: Yeah about a month before
S: And the promotion and publicity hadnât really hit yetâ¦ (Someone starts knocking on the van window offering Silverstein Pringles, stating once you pop the fun never stops)
B: The fun never stops!
S: No, no itâs okay guys Iâm okay. Thanksâ¦
B: Ahh, okay Iâll do one! Câmon weâre gonna do one, weâre gonna do one!!
S: So yeah the promotion still hadnât really hit yet, so yeah the first tour was pretty shaky but it wasnât bad, we came back with good experiences, we made money, it was okay, just a lot of long drives and stuff.
P: That tour was more to kind of bring us together and get us more used to the road life and realize hey this is what weâre going to be doing, the shows weâre alright but it was really just to get us into the groove for the next year.
B: I think one of the good things about our tour was that our first day we were in Chicago which is where Victory is from so it was really cool cause we got to go down there and we spent a day hanging out at the office and then we played our first show in the States there, everyone from the label was there for support but thatâs still a lot of pressure (laughing) not only do you gotta play for a new crowd youâve never played for but you gotta look like your doing well so that this label is going to have faith in all this work theyâre doing for you.
S: It was also the first time that everyone at the label had seen us play too.
A: You guys all played in bands before Silverstein do you think that helped out a bit with a fan-base seeing you had already done this?
S: A little yeah at first, locally definitely, the first shows I had a lot of my fans from my old band that would comeâ¦
P: Lots of hype locally.
S: Yeah there was a hype so it was really good cause a lot of bands have trouble even getting a show, it was fairly decent for us to get a show at least at the beginning.
B: If you know promoters and stuff and they know that youâre good musicians and that whatever youâre into, itâs going to be good, kids will come see.
P: Being in a band just gives you so much more experience with being in the business and playing shows, live stage performance everythingâ¦
B: It really helps out a lot.
A: So have you guys ever seen a Tim Hortonâs on tour in the States.
B: Oh yeah thereâs some, thereâs some in Michigan.
B: Oh yeah Ohio, I thinks thereâs actually a few. We stopped at one so many times, itâs a Wendyâs/Tim Hortonâs combo like there is all over here. Right off the highway we always stop!
P: Itâs so awesome. The same building and everything as hereâ¦
B: You walk in and youâre like wow this is the new Wendyâs/Tim Hortonâs in Burlington.
S: Well Oakville has a Tim Hortonâs headquarters, thatâs where Iâm from I live in Oakville and thereâs like honestly I donât know how many Tim Hortonâs there are but itâs crazy, itâs like twice as much as anywhere else!
P: In Hamilton, thereâs this spot on a corner at an intersectionâ¦
B: Yeah! You can be sitting in one in any seat and look out the window to see at least one more.
S: Itâs crazy down there, I donât know if itâs that bad up here butâ¦
A: So is it amazing to see so many Ontario bands breaking out right now like Moneen, Boys Night Out and Alexisonfire
S: We usually have to name all of them but youâre doing the work for us thatâs awesome.
P: We usually always name them in an interview…
S: Yeah we have to mention them at least once in every interview. No itâs awesome our scene is so good like even when the smaller bands that are just starting out in the scene play a show theyâll be like two-hundred people who come out for it.
P: Yeah I just did this show for this new band called âSilent Windâ and it was like 150 to 200 kids packedâ¦
S: And Iâd never even heard of them
P: Yeah cause theyâre a brand new band, young kids but still everyone came out and supported it.
S: Even still people are more excited about music in our sceneâ¦
B: Everyone is just going to shows.
B: Thereâs tons like âThe Reasonâ, âThe Full-Blastâ, yeah âDistrict 7â um but yeah thereâs just tons of new bands that are just getting started and then thereâs middle-ground bands and the bands that can do a head-lining show in our area and they can still draw 400 kids you know what I mean, thatâs really awesome!
S: Now for page 468 of the interview (laughing)
A: You guys recently played the Exo-Fest?
S: No we didnât!
B: Weâre on the poster and the t-shirt
P: So what happened is we weâre offered the show in late July right, it was a September show and we had to decline because our guitar played Neil had some personal stuff come up but we really wanted to play. Any ways we told them we couldnât play but they kept us on the bill right until the day of the show and then told people we werenât playing.
S: Yeah it kind of sucks because a lot of people weâre pissed-off that we werenât playing but I mean we cancelled like months before.
P: Yeah, I feel really bad for all of our Quebec City fans, weâll be back soon and weâll do our own good show to make up for it.
B: âThe Getawayâ and âThe Full-Blastâ played on it and said kids weâre asking about us, they were like they were never coming.
S: We actually did Exo-Fest the year before
B: Had a great time
S: And really it was great, it wasâ¦ Itâs in my memory as one of the best shows ever weâve played, it was amazing.
A: Any big changes happen within the band after signing?
S: Weâll weâve all got like really big egoâs now and like we kind of like stopped talking to our friends a lotâ¦
P: Oh and we bought this nice van (two days old).
B: Oh yeah and even when Iâm at home I just go and sleep in the back of the van and never come out.
S: We got really stuck-up. No, no really pretty much nothings changed pretty much than the fact that were just on tour all the time.
P: Yeah thatâs the only major life adjustment problem.
B: We had to quit our jobs and quit school
S: Yeah I mean weâre just doing this all the time now, thatâs really the only difference. Itâs a little kind of like a permanent vacation, donât get me wrong it does get stressful though.
A: Do you ever feel like youâre missing out on an anything being so young and never being home like; birthdays, girlfriends?
S: Oh yeah, for sure!
B: Well Shaneâs had a girlfriend for like years so I can kind of see like how it sucks that youâre leaving someone youâve spent so much time with but coming from my standpoint where you donât have a girlfriend it sucks trying to meet girls at home and then youâre not home. You canât, you come home for like a week and you hang out with a new girl or something, then youâve gotta leave on tour again then you come home and theyâve got another boyfriend it just sucks you know.
S: No, itâs kind of like the shittiest thing you can do to your girlfriend is play in a band in be away all the time
P: Oh yeah
S: Itâs really bad, I mean Iâve been with my girlfriend for four years.
P: Even to your friends, your family your girlfriend whatever itâs hardâ¦
S: And itâs really hard too to juggle your professional life and your fans and everything with your personal life and be able to tour and everything and have people see you and still be able to have a life at home.
A: So now you just have to name off if this would be true of false when it comes to Silverstein. First is Silverstein usually on time for shows?
S: umm, Iâd say sometimes
B: When we have to be yes, thatâd be true. Like today we weâre on time.
S: Iâd say true weâre pretty good.
A: Is Silverstein sober for shows?
B: Um sometimes, yeahâ¦
S: Well two guys in our band are straight-edge, Paul and Bill and I myself donât drink on tour very much, very rarely um so weâre always sober the other guys I canât alwaysâ¦
B: Never false. They like to have a couple of beers before they play cause it loosens them up a bit but they donât get likeâ¦ Well weâve played house shows where itâs like they got silly drunk but most of the time, they might haveâ¦
B: Yeah, false.
S: I myself have never played drunk although Iâd like to try it once.
A: And is Silversteinâs van clean?
S: Um yeah right nowâ¦
B: Days two
S: Itâs starting to get a little cluttered though
A: True or False is Silverstein on Friendster?
P: Yep! True, we actually manage our own account too cause some people have fake ones butâ¦ Like Moneenâs, is fake apparently supposedly they didnât even know about it, itâs pretty funny.
B: I asked them about it and they weâre like oh yeah some kid told us he was making it for us I was like âyou mean to tell me itâs not you!!!â I totally thought it was them, theyâre really good friends of ours and I thought that I was actually leaving positive testimonials for them!
A: Does Silverstein get a rider every night?
S: Ha-ha, well yeah Iâd say we usually get something Bill/
B: Which is sometimes hard to come by too itâs a good thing being on tour with a band like Rise Against cause they always get their rider every night.
A: Well thanks again for doing this guys, this is the what?
S: The fourth interview of today, so yeah thanks Jasmine.
P: Did we guestlist you?
A: yeah but as Jasmine Lalonde, my name is Angele.