Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: How would you describe yourself or your band as an artist?
ABITF: Hardcore-punk influenced by Kill Your Idols and early AFI. You’ll hear “the forbidden beat” a lot throughout “Self-Contained.”
PD: Can you tell us briefly about your background – i.e. where you’re from, how you came to make music, etc.
ABITF: I don’t think anyone cares about that, but I’ve been playing in punk-rooted bands since Groundhog Day, 2001.
PD: Who and what inspires you to make music, both in terms of musical and other influences? What do you like to write about in your songs?
ABITF: I just feel like I need to do it and I’m afraid to stop. This record is mostly personal songs, peep the lyrics, they are all on bandcamp: self-contained | a break in the fence (bandcamp.com)
How about a bulleted list?
-a song about not sticking up for myself when I should have on more than one occasion.
-a song about the holiday blues small-talk bullshit.
-a song about the vultures in charge and taking it out on each other, not them…sadly.
-a song about regretting every time I open my mouth.
-a song about breaking out of the daily drone of work and faking smiles.
-a song to remind myself that even if nobody listens or seems to care, don’t stop.
-a song about that piece of shit scumbag brock turner or whatever the fuck his name is.
-a song about picking scabs and scratching ’til you bleed.
-a song about the ‘r’ word and any other word you have in your vocabulary you could easily not use…or use. Fucking try, at least.
-a song about traffic. Relatable right? It’s a metaphor for something. You decide.
-another song about regretting every time I open my mouth or don’t open my mouth.
-a song paying homage to the kids from the block growing up and the stupid shit we got into.
PD: What are your aspirations as an artist?
ABITF: Nothing groundbreaking or different, I’d like people to connect to the songs I wrote or had a part in writing. I’d like to play to a room full of people who care.
PD: What is the proudest moment in your music career so far?.
ABITF: Over the summer my active band, Hundreds of AU, got to open for Thursday and Geoff was standing on the side of the stage the entire set and commented on one of the songs which happened to be one I wrote the main riff for…It was cool to get that kind of validation.
PD: Promoting one’s music is such a challenge these days, especially with so many new artists emerging from bedrooms in the day of the home studio. How is that going?
ABITF: I suck at promoting my stuff and nobody owes me anything, but I am grateful when I get genuine feedback. I still play in these active bands: Control, Died Out, Hundreds of AU, & Lesser Minds.
A Break in the Fence is particularly difficult to promote because it’s not an active band, but I do plan to make it live one day. I wanted to try something different to promote this record, so I paid a PR company, which is why I am here answering these questions. I figured why not? I’m still DIY at heart, for better or worse. haha
On home studios…
Just before lockdown, I set my basement up for recording full bands live or track by track. Here is one of the sets from those sessions: BEDSIDE LIVE – EPISODE 4 – POWER TRASH – YouTube There’s 5 others on the channel. We’d like to get this going again.
My close friend Kevin, who lives in Oregon, played drums and mixed “Self-Contained.” Kevin has been such an important part of my musical “journey” since I started. Even though he lives across the country, we find ways to collaborate on music. I love him dearly.
PD: And how do you book and promote your live shows and tours? Any performances coming up?
ABITF: I am working on getting a live lineup together for A Break in the Fence. I’m fortunate to have people pushing me to do this that love the music. I have a lot coming up with Hundreds of AU. Before lockdown, we did a 7-9 day tour each summer going up into Canada and coming back down into the upper-midwest. I can’t wait to do that again!
PD: What do you think about downloading music online? What about streaming sites like Spotify?
ABITF: It’s convenient.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
ABITF: None, I probably wouldn’t like it as much if I wrote it.
PD: Is there anything you don’t like about the music industry, which you would change if you could?
ABITF: I am not part of the music industry, I am fortunate to be in a niche where I don’t rely on music for income and I am able to do it on my own terms. Though, I wonder if I’d make as much music if it was my full-time thing.
PD: So, what are you working on at the moment?
ABITF: A Break in the Fence: Trying to get “self-contained” heard and would like to complete the pop-punk/emo EP Adam and I kinda started in lockdown. Confusing right?
Control: 4 song EP.
Died Out: 6 song EP.
Hundreds of AU: Hopefully LP5 soon.
Lesser Minds: We’d like to play a show and have it not be canceled!
Old Man is Me: 8 song baritone woods blues EP.
PD: Where can we learn more about you and buy your music/merch online?
ABITF: Hit me up on IG: @a_break_in_the_fence Its a private account, but if you don’t seem like spam or a scam, I’ll accept and I’d love to talk about my music with you of course!
A Break in the Fence on all the streamies!
This was all longer than I wanted it to be and I’d be surprised if somebody read it. If you got this far, thank you!