Trivium Frontman Talks Metal in 2013: 'We Need More Brotherhood'

"We need more kids playing metal again," says Matt Heafy.

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When asked about the current state of metal genre, most fans will likely share a less optimistic stance. It's definitely a complex matter we have at our hands, a question Trivium frontman Matt Heafy recently addressed while stressing the importance of keeping the metal bond alive. "State of metal in 2013 - it's in a great place and it's also in a bad place," Matt told Metal Hammer TV. "I think the fact that there is so much - I always talk about being acceptant of all styles of life and all genres of music - but there is a lot of manufactured nonsense out there. Purely talking about pop and pop country and pop rap and whatever is going on in the hardcore scene right now." Heafy elaborated further, "When I think of hardcore, I think of metal - I think of things I love. In my head, I know what they should sound like. And I can see what these bands are all copycatting off of each other's copycatting and not quite making anything original - not making anything of their own. They just keep copying a form of a copy. "I know I've been looking for that young new metal band. Where are the kids picking up guitars, saying 'Hey, I wanna be like Iron Maiden. Hey, I wanna be like Metallica?' Instead, it's bands that are putting weird dance music in with heavy music, which is fine, I guess they're doing something that kids love. But for me as a metal fan, I'm missing out on where are the young kids picking up guitars and starting metal bands." After noting that "a few last hopes" exist and praising the fact that Metallica and Iron Maiden are currently bigger than ever, Matt focused on the importance of staying true to the metal lifestyle. "It's like, kids, pick up your instruments and start writing some great metal songs and get out there and play music from the soul, play music from the heart, play music that isn't written by some multimillionaire who's just pumping out pop dribble.

"So metal's always there," he continued. "Ever since metal first spawned - it's been there. I know people keep talking about record sales and saying that the state of people buying CDs is bad and that's why labels are getting cut and downsized and that's why bands are disbanding and disappearing. Yet these pop bands are selling millions of records.

"Maybe it's less millions than usual, but we as fans of metal need to not just look at it as a genre, a thing we turn on casually. It's a lifestyle, it's far beyond something that we casually listen to. I think that metal fans and metal bands need to support each other and help bring each other further versus trying to drag each other down.

"Not saying it's a common feature, but I definitely don't see enough of a brotherhood. I think we need more of that and we need more kids [to] start playing metal again," Heafy concluded.

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Are you with Matt on this one? Let us know what you think in the comments.

41 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Originality is defenitly lacking these days
    I agree. Sub Genres of Metal like Thrash are so generic at the moment because it's such a cliché. Once the novelty is gone, there isn't much left in the smoke. There is no originality, it has all been done before and much better too. Even Trivium went down that path until they received a massive backlash. Metal needs more life put into it, more creativity, more thinking outside the box. There will never be another Metallica or Maiden so i wish bands would stop trying to be them!
    He's one to talk. I listened to a couple of Trivium's newer songs on RR's soundcloud and thought they were quite good... but they weren't original in the slightest. It's not really fair to judge them on the back of 2 songs but to me they just sounded like a mash up of Metallica, Pantera, Maiden and Megadeth. Too much stock is put in originality anyway. It's not about how original you are, it's about how creatively you use your influences and to be fair to Trivium they've done that quite well from what I heard.
    The thing is, a genre is a genre and music within a genre, metal, in this case, is going to sound similar to other music in the same genre no matter how hard someone tries to be different. There will always be heavily distorted guitars, riffs, solos, and other aspects of metal that won't change.
    While this is true, a little variation wouldn't "kill the Metal" (thank you Jack Black). Maybe using an acoustic Guitar, or here's a thought . . . not tuning down so far that it sounds like your playing in Mud. Something that creates depth, and changes the tone of the song keeps it from being boring and mundane.
    I met Matt a couple of days ago before a show. He's defenitly one of the most down to earth musicians I've seen recently.
    Sure more kids should pick up a guitar and do some metal. But sh*t ain't that easy. I mean, I can play guitar pretty well, I already wrote songs. But, then, what ? How am I supposed to start up with a band, knowing nobody, still playing on a 15W yamaha amp (that means no gig gear), with my learning at the university, plus parents you don't want to disappoint. I can't just tell them "I quit university, my true passion is heavy metal and I'm going to become Metallica". I can't tell that even if I think about it twice in a day. So yeah, sh*t ain't that simple.
    I'm in university right now, studying engineering (something notably serious in the majority of majors available to uni. kids.). I'm a full time student, a part time fish and chip fryer, and just today met a musician who also attends the school here whom is looking to start a new project with me; we share the same influences, same backgrounds (used to play in metal bands, grew out of metal and are into a whole diffferent span of music and want to indulge into it with our intruments), same hobbies and so on. Just because you're in school is no excuse to not be your own person. I want to be in the music scene because I consider myself a musician. I want to be an engieer, and sure, il make my parents proud when im done, buit theyll be proud of me no matter what i do. To restrain yourself from what you have a passion for because of "other" factors such as school family and friends means youre not as passionate about it as you claim to be, and you find comfort in scapegoating other things to replace that "passion" I feel sorry for yo, and you should too, because you probably tell alot of people who you have music in common with the same bs you just told us. Get a grip, have a beer, and realize your parents' lives will go on no matter what you do; live your life dude, do what you want. you're only so free for so long,g.
    link no1
    When I first started out in a band (around, 5/6 years ago) I could play 'pretty well, I already wrote songs and then what? Well... I didn't know anybody since it was a time in my life I was changing a lot personally, especially with my friends. I was getting really into metal and my friends back then didn't approve of it, or play instruments and my interests where no longer similar to theirs so inevitably, I became near friendless (I had very few friends anyway so it was easy to lose them all) BUT I tried as hard as I could, throwing advertisements around shops that I was looking for a band, searching on social media websites (would have been myspace at the time) and eventually got a phone call (from one of the ads in a music shop) that pretty much defined a large part of my life since. I still had a crappy 10W amp back then because I couldn't afford a new one and continued to use it for a while after joining that band. (Amps usually get mic'd up at a gig and you can usually get at least a 'useable' tone from even a crappy amp). I was in collage but I didn't ignore my higher learning, I did both AND went to university, all whilst keeping my musical life, a job AND a relationship going. I didn't want to disappoint my parents either but on the otherhand, I didn't want to hold back and not do what I wanted to do and to be honest, I know they're pretty proud at how I've turned out. So yea, maybe it's not that simple BUT you just sound like a lazy guy who wants it handed to you. If it was something you really wanted to do, you would make it happen but judging by your post, it isn't, it's just all bad excuses. Ruddy' privileged kids.
    Maybe it's just because I'm a terrible person, but the part of that wall of text that jumped out at me was the part where you say you were in "collage".
    Last sentence is just wrong. Maybe I am just a lazy mother****er in search for excuses. Maybe it is a difference of temperament. Maybe I'm already waiting for that phone call. Maybe things aren't that simple.
    Ex Shred
    "We as fans of metal need to not just look at it as a genre, a thing we turn on casually. It's a lifestyle, it's far beyond something that we casually listen to." This is perfect.
    Perfect for some people, sure. I'm a metal fan, but I would say my lifestyle is by no means particularly "metal". Even if it was, I wouldn't call it such. It's just my life.
    I'm a metalhead, play in a metalband etc..I wouldn't say I have what you would call a "metal" lifestyle either, I'd say I'm just what could be called a normal person. Even in appearance, barring a few tattoos here or there.
    here in puerto rico, there is a certain rise in metal bands these last few years. alot of old guys and young people are picking up instruments and writing their own metal. most of it is just death metal and black metal, but hey, its something. Its not becoming popular anytime soon, but these bands are just doing it to play. We dont really see many pop artists coming out these days.
    Matt is awesome. Such a cool, down to earth dude. I couldn't agree more with what he said.
    I think it's ironic that he's saying this, but I find Trivium need to figure themselves out before he makes this kind of statement. On topic though, I'm a fan of musicians, and songs with some amount of effort thrown in. You hear the stuff raping the airwaves and it's pretty much "I'm at a club, let's drink, chicks hot, I wanna bang her" over a headache-inducing techno beat. Not saying metal is ALL original but at least there are bands and artists that push the envelope rather than follow the trend that radio pop has been doing since the dawn of whenever.
    Wait, is Heafy taking a "Tr00 metulz" stance here? I'm all for bands staying true to the term metal, but as for crossover genres, I think some of those bands are the most exciting on the scene right now. Crossfaith has been bumping in my car for a few weeks straight now and Countdown to Hell is just as, if not, heavier than anything Trivium have ever released. I'll agree in that the entire community does need an overall kick in the ass in terms of brotherhood and innovation. It's hard to take metal into new place however and I appreciate a great song above all else. I won't toss out a new album and simply state "Well this has been done before".
    It looks like he's doing the opposite. He's saying we need to be more inclusive, and more open to change. Metal is stagnating right now, with its purist mindset, and the only way it can avoid dying out is being more tolerant of change.
    And also, change doesn't have to be a bad thing. We can find ways to change metal for the betterment of the genre.
    im a huge trivium fan but its kind of funny how matt says band need to stop copying other bands. does anyone remember the crusade? cough cough..... metallica wannabes cough cough.....this band found their sound with shogun but unfortunately the newest material they have released has left me with low expectations. they have become more and more radio friendly, which is going against everything matt says. trivium is one of my fav bands and i just got home blasting them in my car but this is funny to me.
    If I have to read something along the lines of "I'm 12 an i listen to real music like megadeth **** all talentles autotune pop shit!" I'll go insane. That crap is on every single Youtube video to do with rock or metal. Well done to you for not liking something. Plus people flip their shit if you suggest that the vocals from a live performance have obviously been tuned or overdubbed (like Megadeth Live in A Seattle) because "only talentless pop musicians tune vocals." This isn't really at all related but I wanted to say it.
    awfully big talk for someone whose music these days sounds like generic metalcore. i miss when they played high energy speed metal kind of stuff, like when i saw them live years ago
    I'm not sure exactly where the -core (read: hardcore) influence in their music is. People need to stop using "Metalcore" as a synonym for "Metal I don't like". That said, I agree with your main point.
    I.shower.naked‎ Here's a metal band from my hometown I really like, you should give them a listen.
    This article is directed at bands like that. You should pay attention, especially to the "copycatting off of each other's copycatting and not quite making anything original" part. Then, and only then, you might get to spam unrelated bands in places nobody wants to hear about them.
    on a side note, your buddies' band isn't bad, but they could work on their originality, I suppose. I definitely can tell their influences by their sound; they've got skills though and could possibly improve, if not quit before they waste too much money. And i certainly hope they didn't pay a fortune for production on those ep's, and that they're just doing them their-selves; then they aint got no worries about being in too long to waste so much $$$
    9 times out of 10 when bands say metal should be more 'open', it's coming from groups who rode the waves of a trend, or migrated away from playing metal in the first place. It means even less coming from a guy whose band tried to be Metallica. There is absolutely nothing wrong with experimentation, or bringing in outside influences AT ALL, but when guys like Matt Heafy talk about experimentation or openness, they really mean pop hooks, random electronic breaks or whatever else is trendy. The bands who are truly doing something different with metal have zero delusions about it becoming popular or more viable. Is metal stagnant due to over saturation? Absolutely; there are lots of cookie cutter thrash/death/black/doom metal bands putting out albums every week. But bands who drift away from metal because of 'stagnation' almost always end up playing something ultimately as stagnant, just more accessible. It's funny that the only chances a band like Trivium takes when they release a new album is whether or not they'll alienate their fanbase by becoming more commercial, because they're certainly not taking any musical chances.
    Just have to say I saw them last night in MT and it was epic. Best concert I have been to. The crowd was on fire.
    The music is there, really. I remember when I used to feel like metal was stagnant; it was depressing beyond belief. But the further we move from the "hardcore" sound, the more originality we find. My Spotify is almost entirely composed of progressive and symphonic metal, and there's no shortage of originality there.
    As a fan of "music" .. metal in general, there really hasn't been that standout band that has just blown me away lately. I just keep hoping that the bands I grew up with put out a decent album every few years or so, but hell I don't see too many more coming out of the bands I like. I agree its starting to feel abit like 1990 again... who knows maybe what we need is another "Cobain" to surface, except this time with an LP and wall of Marshalls !!! Up the Irons haha
    Their talking about being original yet they've done covers of Metallica songs...and a brotherhood of Metal players? Hmm how about the Big4? Although Matt is right and I completely respect/agree with what he's saying and enjoy listening to Triviums music, hes being very nieve.
    There's a difference between not being original and doing a cover song
    Then there is the middle road of making a cover song your own. Case in point . . . have you ever heard the original version of "Lake of Fire" by the Meat Puppets, they owe Nirvana a Coke