Attack Attack! Talk "This Means War", "Star Wars", and More
Mon, 14 May 2012 16:27:01
Attack Attack! Videos
For Attack Attack!, the battle has just begun.
Their latest album This Means War stands out as a corrosively catchy combination of metallic riffing and electronic pummeling. In other words, it's the perfect merger of heavy guitars and synths. More importantly, the record wields one teeth-kicking cyber stomp after another. It thrashes at all the right moments, but at the same time there's a danceable edge. Attack Attack!'s War is worth joining.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, Andrew Wetzel of Attack Attack! talks This Means War and so much more.
Did you approach This Means War with one vision in mind?
Honestly, we went in guns blazing, and that's pretty much it. That was our concept. We had the mindset that we wanted to do something special and different. We didn't really have any preconceived notions or ideas of what we wanted to accomplish. We just knew we wanted to write a record that we were going to love and could be super proud of. We knew we wanted to write something super aggressive and really heavy, and we were going to do whatever it took to get that.
What's the thread connecting all of the songs?
Obviously, there's a story and an underlying theme for the whole record. The way Caleb wrote the lyrics, it's like a metaphor for our career. It reflects the lives of four soldiers who went off to fight a war. They come home and find their government has become like a dictatorship. Everybody hates the government. When our fearless soldiers come home, they're met with suspicion and hatred. The whole thing is about going off, fighting a war, and dealing with the effects of war and also coming home and having absolutely no support system or help dealing with all of these things.
What's the story behind "The Eradication"?
I guess our message, if you will, is to spread positivity. Even after all of the shit people go through, the sun always rises again. Tomorrow is a better day. Life is what you make out of it. "The Eradication" is a fissure to an ultimately dark aggressive album. It's the final track that says, "We'll rise up and overcome. We can do anything we put our minds to including overthrowing this government or any other goal".
It's inspirational point to leave off on.
Thank you! That's what we were going for [Laughs].
Do you feel like heavy metal and electronic music can converge seamlessly?
Definitely, we toned it down a little bit on this record compare to our other stuff. We focused on making the record more melodic and guitar- and vocal-driven. Obviously, we can't get rid of the staple of our sound that has sort of made us who we are. We used a lot of the electronics on this record as the icing on the cake instead of necessarily driving a certain part of a song or not. Incorporating the electronics on this record was a much more natural thing than it has been before. It wasn't necessarily a primary focus. It seemed like there was more of a natural flow as opposed to be a necessity to complete our sound as Attack Attack!
Is storytelling an important aspect of songwriting for you?
We didn't want to put out a record that was just pissed because we can. We wanted there to be some substance behind everything we do.
What else fosters that outside of music?
The majority of that story comes from our career as a band. We've had a very tumultuous career up to this point. We've definitely had our fair share of hardships. That's a primary driving force. We've always gotten hated on. We've had people say and do some very terrible things to us over the course of our career. We wanted to make a point. You can think whatever you want or say whatever you want, but we're going to continue to try to fight for what's right or spread some kind of good message to the people who love our music and want to hear us.
If you were to compare This Means War to a movie or a combination of movies, what would you compare it to?
If I had to pick one right off the top of my head, I'd go for Band of Brothers. I was a huge fan of the show, and I can't help but think and feel a little bit like those guys with all of us as a group and the way we are and act. It's really a few good men against the world.
What are some of your favorite movies?
I'm a huge Star Wars fan. I grew up reading all of The Lord of the Rings books. When all of those movies came out, I was really stoked that they followed the books as closely as they could. If you're a big reader, that's a big deal. If you go see a movie based on a book and it's nothing like it, you get pissed. I love anything sci-fi oriented. I also love war movies. I went and saw Act of Valor with my dad before we came out to Europe, and that was a face-stomping movie if I've ever seen one.
Have you heard This Means War yet?