With the recruitment of new singer, Tom Emmans, and the band's upcoming Sinister Tour, The Gauntlet sat down for a brief chat with Canada's Deathpoint.
Deathpoint has a new record titled Sinister coming out on October 1st, 2013. You have released an album and an EP prior to this one. How do you feel this one differs from those?
This album differs the greatest by far, mainly because of our new vocalist, Tom Emmans. His influence on the album, and overall sound has made such a great impression on how we are viewed as a melodic metal band. On top of that, we feel that we've matured as musicians. We no longer accept the "good enough" attitude and every riff, rhythm, melody, or structure is meticulously inspected to make sure that it is the exact sound we are going for. Everyone has taken their playing and writing to the next level for this record, and we’re so excited for what is to come in the future as far as how our sound develops.
All bands grow and progress musically over time. Do you feel this is your best album to date?
Easily our best album to date. We've heard so much positive feedback from many people who have had the chance to listen to the record. So much of the feedback has been directed at the hooks and groove of so many parts in every single song that have left a lasting impression on people, and the reason they go back over the album time and time again. We've always wanted that "I can't wait for this part" feeling to be a part of every song we write.
You have added new member Tom Emmans formerly of Odium to the mix on vocals. What was he able to bring to the writing process for the new record?
He was able to bring a dynamic that we could have never achieved without him. His creativity, originality, and style are near impossible to match. The parts he comes up with out of seemingly nowhere are just incredible. With such little time to prepare for recording this album, he put out what we consider to be the best product we could have ever hoped for. A huge addition for sure.
What do you enjoy most when it comes to writing and recording a record?
I feel like the entire band gets very excited when we write new music, listen to it back, and say "Wow, that's awesome" and know that other people are going to feel the same way. The creation of new music is probably the most satisfying feeling in the world. Recording the music itself can be a stressful time, but when we hear the sound that we envisioned come to life, it’s euphoric. Again, one of the most satisfying and fulfilling feelings possible.
Do all of the band members usually agree on the direction the album will take?
Overall, I do believe we're on the same page as to where we feel the band needs to go for the next record. It can be a struggle to obtain that sound as it's a progression for everyone, and every member of the band needs to push themselves and step up their game to achieve that. But that being said, we know what our sound needs to be and we've begun writing a new record already, and are very excited for where its headed.
Are you influenced by European and Scandanavian metal? Who are some of your influences?
Absolutely. Many bands such as Soilwork, In Flames, Meshuggah, and Dreamscape, just to name a few, play a key part in the style of sound we'd like to obtain. The melodic element of Scandinavian metal is tops, bar none. Since melody is a huge part of our sound, it's impossible not to draw influence from such bands.
What is the metal music scene like in Hamilton?
Its very hit and miss. 5-6 years ago, I would have said its great. But we've seen a serious decline in local bands, local shows, and attendance for many events. Yet, we haven't let that discourage us. Getting out of the local scene to tour and spread our music is a massive goal of ours and the wheels have begun turning to make that happen. It's a shame that a home town has been on the decline, but it's a big goal of ours to help bring it back with straight up, no gimmick, heavy metal.
What sets your music apart from other melodic, groove metal bands?
I think that the maturity of the writing has helped us get ahead a little as well as everyone's drive to write what we feel is the best music we can produce. Everyone plays a fairly specific role in the band and that has helped us define our sound which I feel can be a big struggle for a lot of young bands.
Recently you signed on with Spread the Metal Records. How did this happy union come about?
Our management had been in contact with Spread The Metal records upon joining on with us and pitched us to the label. All the label owner needed to hear was the unrefined demos of the new record to decide that we were a band he wanted on his roster. We're very excited to be working with Spread The Metal Records as they have big plans for us in the very near future. Signing a deal was a dream of mine since day one, and now it's a reality I live, which doesn't fade on me.
How is the single "Sinister" doing radio wise?
Well to be honest, we don't know how the song is doing specifically. The album debuted at #20 across US charts and has not dropped lower than #45. Being a young band on an independent label, its rare but goes to show that our music is holding its own. There are several songs off the record that are currently playing across the US and that to us is a mind boggling fact. To know that there are fans, across this massive continent who actually care about what a bunch of well, kids essentially, are doing in a basement is just so crazy, yet we're so thankfully for every single fan we have.
Are there any plans to make music videos?
Absolutely. We can't release any details just yet, but we have big plans for a very powerful track off of "Sinister" that's sure to grab a lot of attention. We plan to make it a video that people will want to watch over and over again. It will be moving, original, creative, and meant to leave a lasting impression on anyone who sees it.
What are the plans as far as touring goes in support of the new release? When do you plan to tour the States?
We are headed out to the east coast of Canada on August 20th, playing a number of shows on the way there and back. The big goal is to promote the album with the upcoming October 1st release, and to raise awareness of the band to locations that may have not had an opportunity to know who we are yet.
A US tour is a huge goal of ours and absolutely something that must happen. A great music scene, massive population, and right next door, it would be foolish not to plan a tour through the US. As far as the timeline goes, we're not quite sure, but the demand seems to be rising therefore we are extensively perusing tour opportunities.
What festivals have you played and which ones do you have coming up?
We just recently played our first festival which was “ChaosFest” here in Hamilton. We have "Spread The Metal" festival in Halifax on August 24th, and then "Spread The Metal" festival again but in Toronto on September 7th. We are very excited for these dates as we will be playing alongside some huge bands to great crowds.
What do you think is most important when putting on a live show?
The most important thing when it comes to a live performance is to simply PERFORM. Be rehearsed, be entertaining, get the crowd involved, and make them remember you. It's one thing to play a show for people, it's another thing to perform to an audience. A concert is more than just live music. It's a display. It's art. It’s entertainment, and if you can't do these things live, then you'll have an uphill battle gaining fans and leaving an impression on them.
What can a fan expect to see when they come to one of your shows?
Energy and accuracy. We love seeing people get into our music so much. There is nothing better than having people moshing, head banging, and overall loving your set, and that's what we try to accomplish every single time we play. We want people to be involved in the show, not just there as a spectator. We also want it to be known that we are VERY down to earth individuals that LOVE talking to people before and after shows. We are very welcoming of feedback and we love hearing from absolutely anyone.
Do you feel that it has been hard to break into the U.S. market?
Surprisingly, not really! It's actually far more difficult to break into the Canadian market.
There really isn't much love for metal in Canada when compared to the US. The US has really seemed to being latching onto our band and that's such a great thing to see. Every day we see new likes on the Facebook page and I'd say probably close to 80% of the new fans are from the US.
Thanks so much for the interview. Was there anything you’d like to add or say?
You’re very welcome! And thank you so much for having me! I'd just like to say that I'd love for anyone who reads this to take the 30 seconds to get online and check out Deathpoint. We feel very strong about the new record and we have confidence that any metal or hard rock fan that gives the singles, and the album a listen, will love it. And a huge thanks to all who have supported us along the way – without all of our fans, we’d be nothing. Thank you!