It's hard to believe, but Bleeding Through are coming up on their 10th anniversary as a band, and to celebrate, the speedy O.C. metalcore six-piece — and Ozzfest 2006 alumni — will release their fifth studio offering, the Devin Townsend-produced Declaration, on September 30. Even frontman Brandan Schieppati can't believe his band has been around that long — long enough, he claims, to have inspired the current crop of metalcore acts, who almost never credit Bleeding Through as an influence.
"In the world we're in now, of — for lack of a better word — a bunch of new-jack bands that are coming out of f---ing left field every day, people are always like, 'You should care about this band,' or, 'This is the next thing.' But I think you should listen to Bleeding Through's Declaration if you want to know where the roots of this type of music come from," he said, although he refused to identify any of these so-called "new-jack" bands. "Since we've been a band for 10 years, you should listen to us, especially if you want to know where these new bands got their influences from. Whether they'll admit it or not, this is kind of where it comes from."
Schieppati said the last 10 years haven't been the easiest and that every single day has been something of a challenge. Bleeding Through have seen trends come and go, and they've managed to endure, thanks in large part to their loyal fans.
"One thing that a band gets, once they're through their years and once they've been going for some time, and we've been through it time and time over ... but, it's like a bunch of backlashes and, like, a bunch of kids who were once really into your music, and then something trendy comes along, and so they pretend they were never into your music ever," he explained. "They start talking sh--, and then, all of a sudden, for some reason, it's cool to like your band again. So they come back. It's this roller-coaster effect, and whether these young bands want to admit it or not, when these young bands got into this sh-- in f---ing 2003, because they were 19 and that's when they started getting into it, tell me — what bands were around then?"
And like a band that's been around for nearly a decade, Bleeding Through's sound has evolved, as has the inspiration behind Schieppati's lyrics. Declaration lacks the heart-shattered verse that saturated the band's previous offerings, chiefly because the singer is now in a good place emotionally. He was married two years ago, not long after the release of 2006's The Truth, and he's been a happy man ever since.
"I'm not really heartbroken anymore, so I think the thing that really acts as my muse is what we've been through the last seven years of touring and being in this band and, just in general, going to places that have never accepted us," he explained. "It's sort of just about trusting your ability to keep doing this and going through the trends. There's a line in one of the songs where I say, 'There's nothing more to prove/ People come and go/ Ride their fences/ Follow trends.' I think a lot of bands get discouraged by that and break up. But for us, that was our motivation — that we've been this band from day one, and from day one, we've heard the same criticism against it, and we've seen trends come and go, and maybe people thought that we were one of those trends at one point in time, which I can't argue with. We were a new band at one point. But really, what this record is about is not being content with the state of music and people and playing and going to places but just trying to trust in your ability and move forward through it."
Schieppati added that the music reflects this new muse. "There's a certain anger to it, a certain feeling to it and a certain darkness to it," he said. "It's a reflection on the way our lives have been and our career's been so far. It's kind of a testament to that, and it's a reflection on where we're at as a band."
According to Schieppati, it was Townsend who helped Bleeding Through's sound progress naturally with Declaration, because his overall influence on the LP was rather subtle.
"He was adding things instead of subtracting and doing things his own way," he said. "He was making us feel really comfortable and kept us really focused and stress-free so we were happy. Most of the songs we'd written, before we went up to Vancouver, are, for the most part, the way they are on the record, but his input was mostly just little things that made a big difference in the music — tweaking a couple of drumbeats, tweaking a couple of song structures, adding more layers and atmospherics to the record — that was his input. The best thing about working with him is he dives in to every project he works on and treats it like it's his band. He stresses out about things, stays up all night to fix things and do things. ... He was very motivated, and it was nice to work with someone who was on the same page with us."
The record features a guest spot from As I Lay DyingAs I Lay Dying's Tim Lambesis, and it was a collaboration Schieppati claims was a long time coming.
"When we were looking for a bass player in 2003 [after the departure of Vijay Kumar], Tim was actually going to play bass for us, because As I Lay Dying were losing faith in themselves, and he came to us, like, 'Hey, do you guys need a bass player, because I'd love to play bass with you guys,' " he said. "We told him that a couple of weeks prior, we'd added Ryan [Wombacher] to our band, and I think a couple of weeks after that, As I Lay Dying were signed to Metal Blade, and the rest is history. So it worked out good, because I've always wanted Tim to be on one of our records."
The rest of the week's metal news:
On September 30, Chicago's Disturbed will issue a new live album, Live and Indestructible, but you won't find it in stores. The release will be an iTunes exclusive, and we'll be bringing you more details on the downloadable LP when they're released. ... Hardcore legends H20H20, Bane, Energy and Cruel Hand will be joining forces next month for a U.S. trek, which kicks off in Detroit on October 28. Dates for the run are booked through November 23 in New York. ...
Sludgy hardcore act 16 have wrapped the recording of their forthcoming LP, Bridges to Burn, and the effort is being planned for a January 20 release. The guys recently re-formed with their original lineup, and they have just one gig booked: December 16 in Los Angeles. ... Even though they've thrown in the towel, San Francisco death thrashers Light This CityLight This City will be releasing a new album November 11. Stormchaser will feature 12 tracks, including "Fragile Heroes," "The Anhedonia Epidemic" and "A Desperate Resolution." ...
MadballMadball and Suicidal TendenciesSuicidal Tendencies will be playing together later this year. They've booked nine gigs together, scheduled for December 1 in Cleveland; December 2 in Philadelphia; December 4 in New York; December 5 in Sayreville, New Jersey; December 6 in Baltimore; December 7 in Norfolk, Virginia; December 9 in Detroit; December 10 in Chicago; and December 11 in St. Paul, Minnesota. ...
See You Next Tuesday will release their new one, Intervals, on October 14. Look for the set to feature 17 fresh cuts, including "She Once Said I Was a Romantic," "Forever on Deaf Ears" and "This Time the Keys Are Broken." ... Darkest HourDarkest Hour have parted ways with guitarist Kris Norris, replacing him with Mike "Lonestar" Carrigan. In November, the band plans to hit the studio to begin tracking its next effort, which will be in stores this coming spring.