In a brand new and recently published interview byÂ Lucem Fero'sÂ Welsh interviewerÂ Anthony Morgan, Sanctity drummer Jeremy London discusses the group's burgeoning UK presence,Â various aspects of debut album "Road to Bloodshed", the approach of producer Jason Suecof, initial plans for Sanctity's second full length, and his drumming influences. A few excerpts from the interview follow:
Lucem Fero: Could you give me an introduction to "Road to Bloodshed"?
Jeremy London: Yeah. We didn't really opt for a certain theme, or decide how we wanted the songs to sound. We just we wrote a bunch of songs, and we really liked them. There's not a certain theme to "Road to Bloodshed". If you listen to other records, it's obvious that those particular artists were going in one direction for the whole album. We took pieces of everything we'd listened to, and everything we'd liked. There's some rock'ish parts, there's some really heavy parts and there's some chuggy parts. At the same time though, it seemed to be a little thrash oriented. We obviously weren't going down that route, but it just came out. We get classified as nu wave thrash and all this though, and I don't really get it. Given the fact there are a lot of thrash parts, I can somewhat understand that when I listen to it now. People say we sound like Testament a lot, and that's a massive compliment to me. We actually met Chuck Billy a couple of weeks ago - the dude's huge man..
You tracked fourteen songs in twelve hours.
Yeah. I didn't really think about anything. I just played, and if it didn't feel or sound right, then I tried something else. In some respects, I think I developed my own drumming style around the songs. Actually, we've started to write new songs. Therefore, I think about drum parts ahead of time. I'll keep a drum part in my head, so Zeff (Childress, guitars) and I then sit down. He'll write a riff around the drum part, or vice versa. Zeff'll have a guitar part, and then he'll say; “Well, I'm kind of feeling this beat. We'll try it, but if it doesn't feel right, then we'll try something else”. To an extent, that's how I write. I never sit down, listen to the song and methodically analyze the parts. I never feel thoughts such as; “This part needs to be like this. This is a rock'ish part, so it has to be like this”. I never think about that.
When you recorded your parts, how did he (Jason Suecof) push you personally?
Oh God, he would piss me off so much. During some parts, Jason would just say something like “That's fucking crap. Do it again”, or “You need to do it this way”. Sometimes you just get frustrated, and think to yourself “Holy fuck, I'm going to blow my head off”. You just get frustrated; if you can't get a part right right off the bat, then obviously that's frustrating. You got to calm down though. He just wants you to play to the best of your ability, and maybe even better. Really, Jason wants you to just push yourself, and push yourself, and push yourself. I'm a better drummer for it, I really am.
On "Road to Bloodshed", which song do you feel best showcases your identity as a musician?
Probably “Billy Seals”. In terms of drumming, it was the most fun to track. For me, there is definitely some difficult parts. For example, there's a part in the bridge which is a dual guitar part. I match the guitar part with my hands, and then I'm playing double bass underneath. It was a little hard for me to just get my brain around it. There's a part in “Flatline” where it's just like an offbeat part, and then this odd time signature fill into a four beat. Actually, it took me a really long time to do it. I had never really played anything like polymeter, or time differential, or anything like that. It was very new for me, but that's one thing about Jason. he just says things like “You'll get it, you'll get it”, but I would then mess it up. Due to that, he would say “You fucked it up. Do it again”. One time during pre-production, I was so frustrated. I just freaked out; I threw one stick at Jared, and the other stick at Jason. They both ducked, and got out of the way. I threw them hard too, so I wasn't just like.. I really threw those sticks at them. I stormed out, and walked roughly four miles down the road until I calmed down. I then sat down, and played it perfectly with my first attempt.
You said that Sanctity has written four or five new songs. How do these new tracks differ from those featured on "Road to Bloodshed"? What new directions do they venture into?
I would definitely say that some of the material is slower. It's not so fast paced, yet it's just really driving. So far, it's just balls heavy.
When people come to hear those songs, do you feel that they'll think “Oh, fucking hell. I didn't think they had that in them”. Do you feel they'll have a new impression of Sanctity?
It might be that way. I don't want to say that it's going to be a more accessible album, but we really want to focus more on the vocal parts. Jared (MacEachern) has a huge range, and I feel like we didn't really get to show him off so to speak. Therefore, I really think we're going to opt for a more vocal, guitar solo, heavy album. It'll be a heavy album with killer guitar parts, and killer vocals. If the kids like the songs, then they like them. If they don't, then we'll make new fans.
To access the entire interview go toÂ this location.