Currently residing in the highest echelons of the metalcore movement, August Burns Red have taken aim from their vantage point, calling their peers to arms to prevent the death of the genre and unfurling latest LP Rescue & Restore as the banner under which the battles will be fought.
Rescue & Restore once again sees ABR take a new form as they push their sound into previously unknown territories, and with the worldwide release a few weeks fresh Music Feeds caught up with guitarist Brent Rambler for a brief chat to get the lowdown on the record, as well as their potential plans to head Down Under.
Music Feeds: Your latest beast of an album Rescue & Restore has now dropped worldwide. You must have a fairly good idea by now of how the fans have taken to the album. What has the feedback been like so far?
Brent Rambler: The feedback has been great. Nothing but positive reviews and kind words.
MF: Are there things people are picking up on the record that you weren’t expecting?
BR: A lot of people have been commenting on the lyrics, which is nice. You don’t usually see that with metal bands.
MF: It’s been heavily discussed that ABR planned to breathe new life into metalcore with Rescue & Restore after JB [Brubaker, vocalist] challenged other bands and fans “to want more than whatever happens to be the current buzz”. Tell us about for plan of attack for this.
BR: We just wanted to write a more creative and dynamic album then we had ever done before. There wasn’t really a plan of attack, it just kind of unfolded nicely for us.
MF: With each album ABR seems to explore a whole new region of their soundscape. Where were you looking for inspiration for the new album?
BR: To a lot of different genres. We as people tend to not listen to too much metal, so I think that shines through a lot in the music we write. Right now I’m listening to the new Defeater. Love that band.
MF: Do you ever look back to previous releases such as Thrill Seeker or Messengers when you’re writing new material? Or do you tend to only push forward towards new ideas?
BR: That is one thing we do not do. I think trying to write songs that sound similar to old songs is a bad idea. That’s how you become stale and bland.
MF: You guys spoil your fans rotten with regular releases; Leveler still feels so fresh. How long after that release did Rescue & Restore start to take shape?
BR: We are constantly writing, whether it be lyrics or music. However, we only started to get together as a band around the New Year. We try to put out an album every two years. You have to otherwise ADD sets in and kids forget you.
MF: You’ve loaded 11 out-of-control tracks onto Rescue & Restore. Which is your favourite to play live, and why? Vivid detail, please.
BR: We’ve only ever played two songs live so I’m afraid that’s hard to answer. We are playing Provision and Fault Line now, which seems to be going over rather well.
MF: Now you can authoritatively answer this question, we’d like to know which is the cooler feeling: charting on the Billboard top 10, or having a song featured on American Dad?
BR: Billboard Chart top 10. Ridiculous for a band that has no clean singing. I think us and Lamb of God are probably the only bands that’s happened for.
MF: Now that you’ve released a Christmas album, do you have plans for any more seasonal albums?
BR: Not for a while. We may make some new singles, but probably not another whole album.
MF: It’s been a few months since you were last Down Under. Any plans on returning soon?
BR: Yes? Sorry – can’t be specific. I’ll get yelled at.