Mudface Talk ‘The Bane of Existence’ Album, ‘Hellfoot’ Video + More
Mudface are starting to pick up some steam with the release of their "Hellfoot" video, paving the way to their new The Bane of Existence album. We recently had a chance to speak with singer Chris Dinsmore and guitarist Rob Kolowitz about their new album and dig a little deeper into their history. Check out the chat below:
First off, congrats on the success so far on the single and video for "Hellfoot." Can you talk a bit about how the song came together in the studio and secondly, can you discuss how the idea for the video came about? Did the band come up with the treatment or did you choose from pitches for the video?
Chris Dinsmore: Thank you! Hellfoot originally had a different arrangement when it was first written. I recently went back and listened to how some of the songs originally sounded in pre-production form. Robert had a much different arrangement when he first sent it to me. Most of the lyrics and melodies never changed though. I have to credit Sahaj Ticotin for getting us to think outside the box.
For the "Hellfoot" video, I had this idea that the people who were attending the funeral, were attending their own funeral. In life we make choices and with those choices we carve our life's path. Sometimes you are capable of making those choices and sometimes you’re not. Sometimes you are not in control and those choices are made for you. The video basically is a sort of cult/drink the Kool Aid scenario and today is the day that this group ends their lives. Like sheep led to the slaughter, very true to life. The concept was basically mine but director Mike Sloat took those ideas and brought them to life. He did a great job of capturing the dark somber effect of the storyline, without losing the energy of the band's performance. Everybody who played a part in the video were amazing!
Going into working on The Bane of Existence, did you have an idea of what you wanted to accomplish with the album? How close to your original vision did the final album come out to be?
Chris Dinsmore: We really didn't have a lot of time to write for this record and I think the extra pressure pushed us to free think a little more this time around. I think we ended up with 16 songs and a few other riffs we had sitting around. As far as the subject matter goes, we had a lot of personal life things going on with some of us at that time and it definitely came out in the lyrics. We grew up a lot during the making of this record. Even with the album artwork, you see someone who came out the "other side." For better or for worse, we don't know.
Rob Kolowitz: The original vision was to create an album that represents the passion and raw energy that is Mudface in a way that people can relate to and resonate with. I feel that the album exceeds my expectations and original vision in every way.
For the new album, the band had a chance to work with producer Bob Marlette who has overseen countless radio hits and top albums and also Sahaj Ticotin from the band Ra, who brings some expertise from being a performer himself. Can you speak about what both men brought to the creation of your new album?
Chris Dinsmore: In the past, we had worked with some great people but for the first time, got some outside input. They challenged us and helped us come up with new ideas. Both of these gentlemen really pushed us to think outside of our comfort zones and really made us think outside the box. When you are in a band for a long period of time, it is really easy to get stuck in your ways. Both Sahaj and Bob made us realize changing your approach doesn't change who you are, it just helps you grow. And if you’re not growing, you stagnate, then die!
Rob Kolowitz: Both men brought a deep understanding of how to craft songs that are heavy, interesting, flow well and are bombastic while remaining true to our artistic vision. Both Bob and Sahaj were incredibly easy to work with and they pushed us in writing directions we had not yet explored.
While audiences are acquainting themselves with "Hellfoot," for you personally what other songs on the album stick out to you as your favorites and why do those tracks in particular mean something to you?
Chris Dinsmore: For me, "Down Below" stands out as a personal reminder of living in a household that had issues of addiction. And I've lost some of that family because of it. I also love the song "Hollow." It is a song about a man who struggles with everything that surrounds him and constantly questions everything until he is driven to the brink of insanity.
The band started in 2005, so you've had a chance to hone your sound over the decade. Bands work or don't work for any number of reasons. What has made Mudface your passion and the one that has clicked for you?
Chris Dinsmore: As you get older, you fully understand what works and what doesn’t. It's very frustrating losing members and the business end of things can crush the dreams of weaker individuals. For myself, I have been the visionary from the start and that is the foundation of strength that drives me. My love for music continues to drive me as well. You really have to love what you do and everybody has their limit of how far they are willing to go with it.
Rob Kolowitz: It is really hard to get the right chemistry between band members and be at the right place at the right time. Mudface works because all the guys are real stand up guys and everyone brings their "A" game every night.
In the live setting, what's a Mudface show like? Tell me about what you get out of playing for crowds?
Chris Dinsmore: For Mudface, the live show is our selling point. Somebody is always bleeding or breaking something. We love playing live. LOVE IT. And hopefully everybody will give us an opportunity to show you what we got.
Rob Kolowitz: A Mudface show is barely contained chaos. We pride ourselves on playing our asses off while running, jumping and moshing on the stage. We make use of fog and strobes to create a visual show that keeps the audience engaged.
I realize this may change on a nightly basis, but what's your favorite song to play live from the Mudface catalog and why?
Chris Dinsmore: Both "Killshot" and "I'm On to You" are great energy songs to play live and really speak to the audience. "Fed to the Lions" is lots of fun too!
Rob Kolowitz: My faves are "Do Unto Others" and "The Watcher."
"Hellfoot" continues to thrive on our Battle Royale Video Countdown, but what should fans be looking for next from the band?
Chris Dinsmore: The Bane of Existence will be released March 18. Touring will soon follow and we will be doing another video in the not so distant future. We are really looking forward to exploring new places and meeting new friends. Go to mudfacemetal.us for all things Mudface. Stop by and say hello, and follow/like us on Twitter and Facebook. We will see you on the road!