Hatebreed - Sean: Riffs, Slayer and the fans
Roadrunner Records also arranged a great interview with Hatebreed. The last time I wasn’t going to make it and I always wanted to ask these dudes something more about their act, their music and the people supporting them. Last week I got that chance and the lucky one (lucky? Hmmm) was Sean, lead guitarist and backup vocals of the band that leads Hardcore.
Let us start with festivals. Right now you are playing on the Groezrock Festival. I have heard some rumours about the Lowlands Festival this year, what about that or other festivals?
We are going to play them but to be honest I cannot tell you which one because I don’t know. I am going to be there but I got to be honest. We are not familiar with the European Festival thing. In the States you know most of them but over here we just started doing things like this. The first festival we really did was Graspop last year and some other festivals I can’t remember. Besides that we did Dynamo a long time ago but we were young back then. I really don’t know all the festivals.
And some festivals in the Eastern part of Europe?
Last year we did one in Budapest. I think it was together with Slipknot.
Yeah, that is the one. It was a free festival and the people were enjoying the shows man.
Another rumours about entering the studio this year?
Actually we are on some time off right now to do some shows over here, after this it is back home to do some recording. After that we fly back here to do some shows and once again we go back and do some recording. That is basically what we are doing at the moment! I think the recording will be done end of the summer so it will be a late year release maybe.
What can we expect?
The same thing. Definitely the same thing. We are not messing with anything, just being Hatebreed. Doing the thing we stand for. 2 or 3 minutes songs with positive lyrics. That is the strange thing, people always think we are negative but the thing we create is mainly positive and that is what we try to give the people. Positive energy is the thing that is keeping us alive man.
But you are also singing about negative happenings around the world…
Yeah but the way we bring this gives the crowd a blast of energy. And when they look back to a song they will understand our positive input into that event. We always tried to do that. We use the bad things in the world to blast out that positive energy.
Will the album once again last for 32 minutes?
Haha, we maybe going crazy but who knows!
The last show of your previous European tour was in Amsterdam and that show lasted for almost 90 minutes (maybe even longer). For a hardcore show this is pretty strange.
We always do it. The shortest we ever have played was an hour. Every time we are doing a headlining tour we do what the audience asks for. If they want us to play longer we just add some songs to our set. We even played like 3 hours once.
But after around 12 songs you said this is going to be our last song and then you continued for another 10 songs.
Yeah, we were like fuck them. Let’s blast them away this time. We never have got a set list. Sometimes we use guidelines but normally we just go out and play until they cannot stand anymore. We just love giving the audience what they want so they can enjoy the show as much as possible.
About the last tour, the entire tour was great but that show made it one of the best we have ever had. The power, the audience, the entire night was just perfect.
About you, your riffs are so powerful and in some way they have got some metal influences.
Thank you, I have been playing guitar for twenty years now and it just comes naturally. But the writing within Hatebreed is more of a collaboration between the members of the band. Jamey sometimes have got great ideas in his head about the riffs and I have got the gift to play these ideas. Put in the magic touch and make it perfect.
And the ideas mainly come from Entombed, Slayer and shit like that. That just are our favourite bands and we are influenced by those bands and we try to combine these influences with our Hardcore style of music.
I have seen two club shows of Hatebreed, what can we expect on a festival show?
Just the same energy, only much bigger. We just do our thing. The only limit we have is our timeframe. I think we have got one hour here. We pretty much go out there and just play, do our shit and rock out. And most of the time the people go crazy.
Is it harder to get the audience moving on a festival?
No, we put the same amount of energy into it and it just works for us. If there are three people or five thousand, we just love to perform and we always trying the hardest we can. We do everything for the fans.
Last year you shared the stage with Slayer, What was this like because that is your favourite band?
It was awesome. We toured with them a lot actually, four or five times already. It has been an honour because we have always look up to these guys. And because they also know us they validate us. It is just great that your favourite band appreciates your music.
How are the fans of Slayer handling your music?
Well actually they have been great to us! Everybody knows they are the hardest to get but they really appreciated what we were doing on stage. They really embraced us. It was an honour to get the chance to play before Slayer, actually we didn’t care about the audience. We got to play before Slayer. That is just great.
Why did you tour with the ‘Unholy Alliance Tour’ in the States and in the UK but why not in the Netherlands?
I don’t know. It was just the schedule they gave us. Not because we didn’t want to! We were on that tour the entire month but we had to miss the Netherlands.
Your biography on the Roadrunner Records site tells us you guys have got two guitarists.
That is total bullshit. We have been playing with one guitar player for four years now and they just didn’t do their homework haha. No offence but I think it is a mistake. It just works out fine with one guitarist so when the other one quitted we continued with one.
I thought so, or he has been ill for quite some time
Haha! No, that isn’t the case!
The last time we interviewed Hatebreed your drummer told us if he could invite one guest vocalist he would choose the Drum tech.
Did you hear him, he is amazing!!!
Yeah, but why don’t you ask him to join the stage every now and then?
We do! Sometimes we think of a strange name and we play a few songs with him as our lead singer. It is awesome. Imagine the dude with the best Metal voice ever is the drum tech of Hatebreed. That is just crazy haha!
Any last words for our readers?
Thanks for reading this, enjoy our shows and see you soon!
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