Anthony Morgan of Metal Forces recently conducted an interview with vocalist Byron Davis of New Jersey metallers God Forbid. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
On new rhythm player Matt Wicklund:
Byron: "Matt was very enthusiastic about being in a new project, playing with us, writing music, and wanting to continue doing music. He wrote half of the material for the record. He brought excitement and youth I guess not youth, but he brought back the feeling of why we started doing music in the beginning. He brought a more at peace vibe than what the vibe had later became, a vibe of having fun, enjoying each other's company, and playing live music together again. Matt writes like Doc [Coyle] writes, and they both share the same types of influences. Matt writes a lot of catchy riffs, and knows how to assemble them in a manner that makes it possible for people to hear and understand, so to speak. I just feel that the music that Matt wrote was progressive in the sense that it was forward-thinking. He wrote some really great songs as well as Doc. He loves to write music, so he brought that passion to the table when he came and joined the band. Some of the stuff that he wrote you might think Doc wrote, but Tricky actually wrote them. That's what I call Matt: I call Matt Tricky. He's just infused with us though, if you will. It's like an updated version of God Forbid, version 2.0, so to speak."
On God Forbid's new album, "Equilibrium":
Byron: "The album is amazing; I really can't say enough about this album, because the album is by far the best album we've written to date. We say that with every record, but it's always true. We always try to one-up ourselves, and we're fortunate enough to be able to do that. I'm very proud of this record and the people involved in the making of this record. I also look forward to getting out and playing songs off of this record, having people hear it, and seeing what they think."
On switching labels from Century Media to Victory:
Byron: "Our contract ended with Century Media, and we were free agents. We had been with Century Media for over ten years. I don't really wanna talk about that because Century Media was a good label, but we just didn't progress forward with them in the sense that I love Century Media, and the people at Century Media are great and they do what they can. We'll just leave it at that. I think the vision that Victory has is what we need as far as being willing to go forward and try to break ground. They like what they heard, and they want other people to hear it and give people a chance to take it all in. I really don't like talking about labels man because you say something, it's taken out of context, and then the whole shit gets totally fucked up. There are some good labels out there, and there are some bad labels. The fact that Victory has a vast assortment of bands, bands that do well, and the genres that they may or may not be in speak volumes about the label itself. It speaks volumes about the work ethic, and the ideal of bringing new music from new bands as well as older bands back into the forefront of the industry."
On what God Forbid is:
Byron: "God Forbid is a representation of the working class of America, the ones who grind it out no matter whether success comes or not. We follow our dreams, and we stick to our morals and beliefs insofar as what we want to accomplish with ourselves independently as well as a unit. We're the unheard, the unspoken, the ones in the background that people seem to forget about and don't realize that overall the bigger picture wouldn't be possible without the worker bees. God Forbid are basically the worker bees, that's what we are. That's what God Forbid is; that drive, that determination, that focus. That ability to move forward, and not let things get in your way or people get in your way."
On the Occupy Wall Street protests:
Byron: "I think those activities are what made our country. That's what made America, the fight against tyranny. I think that illustrates what is important to Americans as a whole, what the values or lack of values have become to the extent that when people see something that they're not really feeling they're not willing to sit back and take it on the chin. They're willing to stand up for what they believe in and fight for what they think is right, certainly in this day and age where there are so many people that are empowered that make decisions for people. To judge a country as a whole by its leaders isn't right, but it's done anyway because there is just a lack of understanding about what's really going on. A lot of people have been glazed over in the sense that they're immune to the reality of what is really happening around them, and they're just content with their day-to-day life."
Read the entire interview from Metal Forces.