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BrokenTooth – Interview


BrokenTooth – Interview

Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)

BrokenTooth – Hertfordshire, England.

 

PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.

BT: Jed: We formed as BrokenTooth in 2019, after me and Jack had decided to work on producing some initial music together. I had been in a number of bands previously, and Jack was always someone that I’d wanted to work with since I’d begun hearing the music he was producing. He’s a talented songwriter, guitarist and a born musician who just keeps coming up with a lot of the ideas that ultimately make it in to our singles.

Jack: I was a massive fan of Jed’s vocals in his previous band, Lower the Skies, so it was a bit of a fan boy moment when Jed asked to work with me on a project! Jed’s vocal range is something we in the band are all in awe of, and it’s astounding hearing him each time we record – he just gets better and better.

Jed: After putting together some initial rough demos, and feeling that these were good, but needed to be tested in a band setting, we bought Mitch in to the mix. I’d known Mitch for many years and we had crossed paths a few times in previous bands, and we had spoken before about collaborating on something so he was the first person we thought of to bring in to the project.

Mitch: I grew up playing in punk bands but had never turned my hand to metal drumming or even played a double bass pedal before, despite metal being a large part of my musical taste. It was incredibly daunting, but I was so excited by the music and ideas that had been put forward – I felt compelled to be a part of the project and got to work straight away. We then were on the lookout for a second guitarist and a bassist, and Peter and Charlie were then added to the band in late 2019. With the two of them both coming in, it really completed the band and the vibe we were going for.

Jack: I actually knew Peter from a previous band, and Mitch and Jed both knew Charlie well. With Peter’s technical abilities on guitar and Charlie’s flare and consistency on bass, it made them both obvious choices for completing the band.

Peter: All five of us have been in various bands over previous years, but we are all really excited with the sound we have found within BrokenTooth and the bond between us. Things just seemed to progress very quickly and we were able to gel almost instantly.

Charlie: The majority of us knew each other well before this had begun, and some of us had played in previous bands together, so there was a real click between us and respect for each other right from the first time we all played, and that has just continued to develop as time has gone on. The progress made since the initial conception of the band has been huge, with each member really coming into their own and influencing the music produced. 

Peter: Another great thing is that we also record and produce all of our songs ourselves, with Jack undertaking the recording and acting as the mixer and producer for each of the songs – the amount of hard work and passion that we put in to the songs is huge as it is all done ourselves, and Jack’s recording and producing abilities have enabled us to really bring out the sound we wanted on each of our songs.

 

PD: What type of artist are you?

BT: Jed:  We’re all really hardworking lads and we love to create music that we’d want to listen to. We’ve tended to describe the music generally as ‘melodic metalcore’, but I wouldn’t say that it’s all generic metalcore or even limited to that genre. We try to think of our music as to how it will make people feel and how it makes us feel – we have some aspects of metal, melodic, punk, groove and thrash all thrown in to our songs, with clean and dirty vocals, so we’d like to think that there’s a little something for most in there.

 

PD: Who are your influences?

BT: Charlie: On a band level, I’d have to say that Metallica, Linkin Park and Bring Me The Horizon have each been huge influences for me musically growing up. But in terms of individual bassists, I’ve always loved Fieldy (KoRn), Sam Rivers (Limp Bizkit) and Ryan Martinie (Mudvayne). Each of them bring a real individual style to the bands they are in and are incredible bassists, and that’s something that’s key for me – bringing my own sound to BrokenTooth.

Jed: I think as a band, we draw a huge amount of influence from a variety of genres and situations. Influences can come from anything – whatever we are listening to or experiencing on any given day.  The person that got me in to wanting to become a vocalist was probably Mitch Lucker (Suicide Silence), but I wouldn’t say that the style is prevalent in our music. There’s loads of great vocalists out there – growing up, I always loved Matt Heafy’s (Trivium) vocals, Jeremy McKinnon (A Day to Remember), Caleb Shomo (Beartooth) and more recently Jamie Hails (Polaris). They all bring different styles and elements, and we want to create our own sound as opposed to trying to imitate other bands.

Jack: Totally true. For me, one of my main influences was also Caleb Shomo (Beartooth). He’s a great vocalist and guitarist that continues to inspire me. But there are so many great musicians in general that are out there plying their trade. For me though, one of my biggest influences when coming in to this band was the other guys – I was writing and trying to put ideas down for riffs, and seeing and hearing everyone digging the riffs and putting their own mark on them is what inspires and motivates me to keep progressing.

Mitch: I totally agree with Jack – seeing everyone else working really makes me want to step up my game every time we get together. There’s a real buzz and excitement within the band for the music we’re making currently. In terms of influences when I was younger, it was Joey Jordison (Slipknot), Adrian Erlandsson (who was in Cradle of Filth at the time) and Travis Barker (Blink 182) that made me want to start drumming, although I spent many years playing more the latter style of pop-punk/ punk than metal. I still don’t think you can beat a drummer who you can really feel the groove of, and for that I really love Jose Pasillas (Incubus) – he’s another drummer who definitely deserves a mention – and Nick Taliadoros (Our Hollow, Our Home) – he takes a range of styles and uses those to create something different, but appropriate for the music, which is something I’m a huge fan of.

Peter: The bands that have really influenced me more recently are Polaris, Northlane and Thornhill. But I agree that we take influences from a vast array of bands, individuals and situations to create the music we do.

 

PD: Musically, what are your dreams and goals?

BT: Peter: I’d love to be at the stage of playing festivals as a band with a large following. I’d love to get to that stage where we hear the crowd singing our own songs back to us.

Charlie: I’d love to share the stage with some of the bands that shaped us and inspired us growing up, and make people feel the same way that we felt as kids when we went to gigs.

Mitch: Long term, I’d love to do a European or American tour with these lads and just play the music we love to those who want to hear it. In the short term, I think I just can’t wait to get some more music out, get out on the road playing shows and continuing to hone my drumming technique and abilities.

Jed: I’d say all of the above are aims we would all look for moving forward. Playing festivals, touring, getting a larger following, playing with some really sick bands – just getting out there and playing our songs to whoever wants to hear them.

Jack: Agreed. All of the above and just ensuring we keep creating and playing the music we love as a collective.

 

PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?

BT: Jed: I’d say that we all have our own input in each song, for sure. Sometimes Jack will bring a riff or idea to the table, Peter and Charlie will tweak and layer that riff with leads and bass and Mitch will compose the drums for it. In that scenario, we tend to build the songs up piece by piece and then tweak as we go along. But other times, ideas will spawn from jamming together. It varies. We all have an input on the structure and sound of the song, which you would think could be difficult, but we are usually all on a similar page and we respect each other’s musical views and abilities, so we’ve been able to construct songs regularly and use everyone’s ideas well to create the sound we want. Jack is really in tune with what we each want to hear in each new song, and when recording and producing goes in to great depth to get that sound that we are all craving.

Mitch: That’s a fair assessment of what tends to happen I’d say. It’s definitely a collective writing process, with many tweaks to it and structure is so important for all of us in the songs we write. Jed is also constantly writing lyrics and melodies, and he tends to tell a story throughout each song. They’re not just random lyrics put to music – we wanted to avoid that so that people can ascertain the meaning, feeling and message of the music we write. Jack is certainly a real creative outlet – many times the initial idea and riff will start with him, and his ideas always get us all pumped up and we all then input in to the progression of the song. Ultimately Jack’s then the one to finish the song off in the studio – he’s the constant throughout. It’s incredible watching him work and seeing those ideas take shape as we each have our input, and by the time we’re in the studio to record, he already knows exactly what we each want out of the song.

 

PD: How do you promote your band and shows?

BT: Jack: We usually promote through social media, venues, booking agents and word of mouth. We have a very energetic and high octane live show, filled with stage presence and we like to get everyone involved. We can’t wait to get back out on the road, so it would be great for fans, new and old, to come out and see us when gigs do finally resume. The best place to follow us for updates on our gigs and all other things BrokenTooth are on our Facebook at ‘We Are BrokenTooth’ or on Instagram at @wearebrokentooth.

 

PD: What do you think about downloading music online?

BT: Jed: Downloading music online? Or illegally downloading music online?

Jack: Either way, I think it’s a compliment to a band that people want to listen to your music, by any means. Of course, in a monetary sense for larger bands and artists, illegally downloading music is a massive deal financially for them. All of our music is available online to stream and download- it seems to be the way things are going now. We’re happy for people to access our music however they like, and in whatever way it takes for people to hear it. We love making music and want people to hear it!

Mitch: I think as a band we certainly also discussed the online vs physical copies debate. I personally still love a physical copy, but the industry certainly seems to be majority online now – everyone wants to be able to stream music as opposed to going out and buying new music.

Charlie: Yeah, an online presence seems to be required these days and downloading and streaming music is a key part of that, as well as visuals on platforms like YouTube.

 

PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?

BT: Peter: For me, it’s got to be ‘Mono’ by Fightstar. I feel like it’s a perfect balance between gentle and hard hitting, and I love songs that have a huge amount of emotion behind them, both lyrically and musically.

Charlie: ‘Chelsea Smile’ by Bring Me the Horizon – it’s an absolute tune! Or ‘Parting Gift’ by Our Hollow, Our Home – that’s a beautiful and mesmerising song.

Mitch:  Yeah, Our Hollow, Our Home seem to write countless great songs and are probably one of my biggest, more recent influences. One of my favourite songs and most amazing songs I’ve heard live is ‘The Past Six Years’ by Deaf Havana. There’s a real honesty and bitterness in that song and I’d love to have written a song like that. Or ‘House of Wolves’ by Bring Me the Horizon. That is an anthem!

Jed: I’m not really sure of a single song I’d wish I’d written. I always want to write something different, so whilst there’s a lot of songs I appreciate and take influence from, there’s never really been a song where I thought ‘wow, I wish I wrote that’.

Jack: It’s a difficult question – there are so many different bands, songs and individual aspects of songs that have influenced me that to choose just one that I wish I’d have written is too difficult!

 

PD: What are some of your pet peeves?

BT: Mitch: I have some really strange pet peeves and things that I can’t stand.

Jed: Indecisiveness – just make a decision!

Peter:  People using the words ‘genuinely’ and ‘generally’ interchangeably as if they mean the same thing.

Charlie: Fakes/ betrayers. Although that’s more of a hatred than a pet peeve!

Jack: Loud eating is something I can’t stand.

Mitch: Time wasters. And ketchup in burgers. I love ketchup and I even like it with burgers, but I have to dip the burger in it as opposed to put it in the burger. Gotta get that burger to ketchup ratio right! I told you some of them are strange…

 

PD: What is your proudest moment in music?

BT: All: The first show as ‘BrokenTooth’.

Jed: We all know there’s so much more to come, and that felt like the beginning of something special.

Mitch: Yeah, honestly, the first show with these guys. It wasn’t a massive venue, but we were called in at the last minute and it was a real moment where everything we had been working so hard on came together in a live capacity. It was a great show – one of the most enjoyable I’ve ever played – and because I’m so proud of the music we produce, it was a really proud moment to be able to get on stage and play the music I love with this group of super talented lads.

Charlie: Yeah, I feel like that first gig was a real moment to savour and the energy for that show was electric – an absolutely amazing feeling. But I feel like we haven’t achieved what will turn out to be our proudest moment yet – there’s so much left to come and I’m really looking forward to that.

 

PD: So what are you working on at the moment?

BT: Jed: We released our debut EP ‘Mortuss Est Salus’ at the beginning of 2020, along with our first music video ‘Burnt Ground’, which we were hoping to gig on the back of for the first part of the year, but due to COVID-19, we were limited as to the number of shows we were able to play. The good news about that though is that it did give us more time to write and record more songs, and our latest single and video for ‘R.O.T’ has just been released on 12th July, with much more to come.

Charlie: COVID-19 gave us some real time to write and reflect on our music and the direction we want to head. We’ve written a number of songs and begun the recording and production on these – we’re really stoked with how they are sounding and the direction of travel. R.O.T was the first to be released, and you can certainly expect a few more singles and videos before the year is out.

Peter: Yeah we are all really excited for what’s happening moving forward, with live shows hopefully resuming soon as well, as things have been on hold a bit with that aspect. All of the shows we had planned and scheduled from March onwards were cancelled or are due to be rescheduled, but we have recently been in talks with a number of bands and promoters with regards to booking gigs and possibly a tour as soon as it is safe to do so, so you can expect us to be on the road and playing as soon as we can. We all love playing live and can’t wait to get back out there.

Jack: We love the music we write and we love playing live. Our real aim is to keep progressing with our music and getting out and playing to as wide of an audience as possible. We are all looking forward to continuing to release more music, venturing out to a variety of different places and hopefully, once things are back to normal, get on to a number of gigs and festivals and who knows from there?

 

PD: : What music have you available online and where can we buy it from? 

BT: Jed: All of our current songs are available on all major streaming platforms, including Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon Music and YouTube. We are currently in the process of getting our first sets of merch produced and these will be coming soon, along with details on how to purchase these.

BrokenTooth links:
Band/Artist location – Hertfordshire England
Facebook – You Tube – Soundcloud – Twitter – Instagram –
Apple – Spotify – Amazon – Deezer – Google Play
Check our page for BrokenTooth


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