lunes, 7 de junio de 2010

Entrevista con Jay

La estrella de Bullet For My Valentine sigue en aumento. Su tercer álbum, "Fever" debutó impresionante dentro de los diez primeros en la mayoría de lugares del mundo hace unas semanas con fans de estilo agresivo en la música. BFMV traerá la fiebre a Australia en septiembre con Bring Me The Horizon y el Cancer Bats. Deborah Konopnicki se sentó con el bajista Jason James en una charla impresionante del álbum y lo emocionado que está por venir y tomar una copa con los lugareños.

Interviewer: Hey, Jason! How are you doing this morning?
Jay: I’m doing good, thank you. How are you?
Interviewer: Good thanks. I appreciated you having a chat with me this morning. I can only imagine how busy it is for you guys. First off, you are on tour in the US at the moment. How are those shows treating you?
Jay: The shows are going absolutely amazing, actually! I was quite surprised with how much the kids were singing along to the new album. Every single song. It was crazy.
Interviewer: Are you playing much of the new material live yet?
Jay: Yeah, we’re trying to do it evenly. We’re playing about 12 or 13 songs per set and maybe four songs of each album. Hopefully we’ll be able to play a few more new ones then that soon, we’re just waiting for kids to catch onto the album a little bit more.
Interviewer: Your third album “Fever” was released last month. How are you guys feeling about the album at the moment?
Jay: We’re all over the moon as I’m sure you can imagine! It’s done way more then what we expected to do so we’re really happy with the outcome. It got to number three in the charts in America and that was crazy! It’s done awesomely well, so we’re all really, really happy. We love the album and we all know that it’s the best stuff that we’ve done so far, and yeah. Spirits are high.
Interviewer: Yeah, as you mentioned it debuted at number three on the US charts, number five on the UK charts, number five on the Australian charts and pretty much top ten releases for the rest of the world. How did you guys react to that?
Jay: We didn’t know what to expect, really. At the beginning when we first started writing the album we didn’t have any expectations, but these songs started evolving into what they are. When the actual finial album was finished I was like, “wow!”. It really blew me away. It blew all of us away. We hoped that it would do well. We knew that it would do well in the Bullet world and we thought that a lot of others would like it but it’s done more then that. We’re started to get new fans and it’s just escalating now which is amazing.
Interviewer: Did you feel any outside pressure after the success of “Scream, Aim, Fire”?
Jay: Well, “Scream, Aim, Fire” is kind of a rushed album. We did it while we were on the road touring and stuff so we didn’t have as much time to do that album, but on this one we took out some time to go to the studio and it’s turned out to be the best album that we’re ever done. We just approached it the same way that we did with the first album, “The Poison”. We went to the same place that we did “The Poison”, like in the same studios and stuff that we were in to rekindle some old feelings off of the old album. It kind of worked because now it kind of touches back on “The Poison” and we’re really happy with it.
Interviewer: Were you listening to any music while writing for the new album that inspired you?
Jay: Not really, no. We just did it the way that we’ve always done it which is jamming together.
Interviewer: Do you have any favourite tracks from the album so far?
Jay: Every one of the songs really. We love them all because they’re great songs. You could honestly pick any single one to be the single. Like, if I had to pick my absolute favourite one it would probably by either “Fever” or “Begging For Mercy” I suppose.
Interviewer: One of the tracks that really stood out for me was the single, “Your Betrayal”. It’s got such a powerful building introduction that feels like it would translate beautifully live. Was this something that you thought about while writing the record? Or was it something that just happened naturally?
Jay: Kind of both, really. We didn’t go in with the idea that we were going to write an arena song or an arena album, but when you are going through a song we do kind of imagine what it would be like, as in, if it would translate live well or not because that’s what we do. We play live. It was kind of in our heads when we were doing it that this was the easiest song in the world! I mean, that one is so basic. Our idea coming into this album was that ‘less is more’. Good structured songs are easier to listen to but still really powerful, you know? I think that we managed to get that.
Interviewer: Another one that stood out for me was “A Place Where You Belong”. It’s quite a slow song compared to a lot of your material. Was this a premeditated move? Or like you mentioned before were you just going for a simple theme all around?
Jay: Well, when we write an album the riffs are around and they kind of write themselves into songs. Whatever song we write we’re not like, “It can’t go this way or it has to go that way”, because in Bullet For My Valentine, the songs kind of write themselves, and however it turns out it makes a Bullet For My Valentine song. That’s the way that it turned out and that’s just the way that we write songs. We don’t try to do that, it just happens. I think that our albums will always be like that.
Interviewer: You guys took some time off during the recording process to tour a bit. Was it refreshing to get out of that rehearsal space and come back with some new ideas?
Jay: Yeah, we had some time at home with our families when we were doing the recording. We had actually done the music twice. Once, and then we scrapped that because it wasn’t going very well. We went home to spend time with our families and started feeling very nostalgic. It really boosted moral, and so we just wrote the album again for a second time. When all the music was done our producer, Don Gilmore pushed us and wanted us to try something different. Matt (Tuck) and him worked a lot together on the vocals and then came back. It was like there were too many cooks in the kitchen at first but it was good that he wanted to push him a little bit more. It was good to be able to step out for a few weeks and them come back and listen to what we had done and see if we could get anything better out of it. In that time while the boys and I were at home with out families we were just being dads. It was good.
Interviewer: You guys have said that working with producer Don Gilmore proved to be very trying at times, with you often having to rewrite lyrics and riffs until he was totally satisfied. Was this at all frustrating for you? Or were you able to push yourselves further as a result?
Jay: Yeah. Don Gilmore works a Lot differently to Colin Richardson (the producer on “Scream, Aim, Fire”). We wanted to step out of our comfort zone and try and raise the bar. He approached us in the beginning and said, “Can I work with you?, this is what I think your previous albums lack, this is what I think I can give you, this is what I think you need to do” and so on. He really said all the right things. All the sessions that we had with him and all of the songs that we actually wrote with him didn’t clash so much. The way that he does things, he just wanted to skip ahead to the arrangements and the vocals. He wasn’t taking too much time on the sound, like he wasn’t really sonically into the sound. We would spend weeks doing a snare drum, but Don Gilmore is more about structure. He was going to come back at the end and fine tune everything, but Matt and us didn’t work like that. It was a bit of getting used to each other and it finally clicked. We all gelled with him and we finally saw how he worked. We all got along, him and Matt got along and we were able to make one of the best albums that we’ve ever done.
Interviewer: You guys played a special secret show for the UK release of the album. How did that show turn out?
Jay: Yeah, it was good! We live streamed it on MySpace so there were heaps of people online watching it live. They were all writing in and saying things about the show which was awesome. It was kind of like a secret show at first, but not really considering that it was live streamed on MySpace, you know what I mean? Our first main show back in the UK is going to be at the Download festival, headlining the second stage in June.
Interviewer: You guys have been nominated for a Metal Hammer Golden God award for best UK band which you guys won back in 2006. What does winning an award like this mean to the band?
Jay: It’s awesome! We’ve won a few awards now from the UK Metal Hammer and we’re all just over the moon. We’re really, really proud of ourselves and proud of everything that we’ve done. We’re really thankful to everyone that listens and gets the music so yeah. It feels amazing.
Interviewer: You guys are set to make your return to Australia in September, playing a run of arena shows with Bring Me The Horizon and the Cancer Bats. What are you expecting from these shows?
Jay: I can’t wait to come to Australia! We’re hoping that from what we’ve been hearing about the position of the album that we’re going to get a really good response from over there, just like we always do. We love coming to Australia. Me personally, it’s my favourite place to play in the world because it’s like the most closest to home that I can be. I’m Welsh and I drink (laughs). Australian’s know exactly what I’m saying! It’s good to have a drink with everyone over there and they’re so welcoming. I can’t wait to get back done. It’ll be really good for us.
Interviewer: What made you decide to tour with two bands that are quite different to your own style of music?
Jay: Probably just to change it up a little bit. We’ve toured with those guys previously, and in the past years we’ve done shows with them and toured heaps with the Cancer Bats before, so we know them and we’ve friendly with them. We know that they’ve got a certain type of following. Both bands draw certain types of followings so it’s cool to mix it all up. Everyone will come to the show and feed off of each other, and we’ll hopefully gain more fans!
Interviewer: Do you have any favourite bands to tour alongside of?
Jay: Yeah. 36 Crazy Fists! We love to tour with them. Killswitch Engage, All That Remains, those guys are really cool. We loved touring with Iron Maiden. That tour was awesome. Avenged Sevenfold, we love touring with those guys. We’re practically best friends with them. Lamb Of God, and all of those cool bands really.
Interviewer: You’re touring with Aussie band Airborne at the moment. How are they to tour with?
Jay: Yeah, I think that those guys are really cool. They can sure drink, but so can everybody from over there! See, that’s what I mean. It’ll be cool to have a drink with you guys when we get over there. The Airborne guys are cool, man. We’re having loads of fun with them.
Interviewer: In between now and September, what is the plan for Bullet?
Jay: We finish up here in a couple of weeks, then we go over to Europe where we have a full European festival tour. We’re going to hit all of the festivals over in Europe up until July when I go home because my partner is expecting a little boy. So, we have five weeks off from July till the 20th of August where I’ll have my son and spend some time with him and get back on the road for the rest of the tour. We have Japan, we’ll come over and see you guys, I think it’s back to the states and then do a UK run I think. For the next 18 months is just a would tour. We’re pretty much going around the world twice.
Interviewer: What are you hoping that fans can take away from “Fever”?
Jay: Just that, Bullet For My Valentine and Fever, that’s what we’re all about. When people picked it up, I just hoped that it made an impression and an impact like “The Poison” did. That album did well, and I hope that it’s going to have the same impact on people that hear “Fever” for the first time. When they listen back through out back catalogue of albums I just hope that they can become a huge fan.
It’s definitely the best stuff that we’ve done.

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