Lizzy Borden: The Younger Generation Determines What Music Will Live On
For over three decades, Lizzy Borden have remained a cult favorite known for their bombastic live presentations, the theatrical Master of Disguise relic and prominent presence in the Penelope Spheeris film chronicling rock and metal's excess toward the tail of the '80s, The Decline of the Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years.
Throughout the band's three periods of activity, namesake frontman Lizzy Borden and his brother, drummer Joey Scott, have remained as the only constants in an ever-rotating lineup. Their last record, Appointment With Death, was released eleven years ago in a tumultuous climate for traditional albums, leading the singer to pump the brakes on studio activity until the market shifted back in his favor.
Now, we're staring down the release of My Midnight Things, the first album from the group in over a decade and seventh studio effort overall. Lizzy Borden inked a new deal with Metal Blade Records, their lifelong home, and will issue this latest slab of music on June 15.
We spoke with Borden about My Midnight Things, which finds the band drifting away from their traditional / power metal sound and into something more anthemic and grandiose, with layers of gleaming vocals, incessant hooks, and infectious melodies.
Check out the chat below and grab your copy of Lizzy Borden's new album here.
My Midnights Things is a bit of a departure from the traditional metal style and is more rock-oriented with a heightened sense of drama. What led you down this new path? Is there anything new you've been listening to since Appointment With Death that inspired this?
With this album, I wanted to stay true to my influences which are based almost completely in the '70s, so in a sense, it's the most pure Lizzy Borden album I've done since the Master of Disguise album.
A lot of the songs play with mood and a sense of dread but there's always an uplifting, anthemic drive behind it all. How did you unify this sound across the album?
Even though I'm working with dark themes I really wanted to find a positive place to go so there's a give-and-take, a black-and-white, a multi-dimensional underlying hope that is trying to drive through it all. Like in the song "The Scar Across My Heart," I'm talking about a no-hope situation, a never-meant-to-be situation, but I'm still singing "We're gonna make it now." I'm always looking for that human reaction no matter how delusional or unrealistic.
"Long May They Haunt Us" was inspired by the death of so many rockers in recent years. The time will come when all of these legends will retire and pass on. What else can we do to ensure the younger generation discovers and learns about rock and metal's beginnings?
To me, that song is an anthem about all the people that are no longer in our lives whether they passed on or just are not around. I wanted to find a positive way to salute, honor and remember. I always want to keep thinking and remembering; "Never wish you away." I think the music and the songs are the legacies of any generation. When a younger generation discovers older music and falls in love with it, that's the true test if it will live on or not.
It's been eleven years since Appointment With Death. What makes now the right time for Lizzy Borden to resurface?
I have been touring the world but I have not been a recording artist for eleven years and it feels amazing to do that again. Since the collapse of the music industry, it just made no sense for a band who is not part of any clique to continue making records — it would fall on deaf ears. But Metal Blade records has found a way to rise from the wreckage and created a new system that makes it worthwhile to make records again and at least have a chance to find the audience. I had to wait for that to happen and now is that time.
With the rise of Ghost, theatrical rock and bigger stage shows seem back "in." Lizzy Borden has always presented a dynamic live show and you've promised something big when you hit the road for this record. What can you tell us about the show or its theme?
I'm extremely excited about creating the My Midnight Things show and getting this tour out on the road all around the world. Because it's been eleven years I wanted the album to come out and take on a life of its own before I started touring. The new show will be based on the My Midnight Things theme playing songs from the album as well as some of the Lizzy classics. I'm working on the production and all the theatrical bits and pieces now, It's a brand new show that will be tailored to My Midnight Things.
Lizzy Borden, "Long May They Haunt Us"
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