Interview: He Is Legend
He Is Legend are one of the greatest, most under-appreciated heavy rock bands getting around right now, and they've been this way for the past couple of years now. They’re phenomenal and insanely talented whilst being truly singular in their sound, this band is one of a kind. Not really brutal, yet unrelentingly heavy, at once proggy and hooky, with fantastic riffs and vocal lines that deposit ear worms deep inside your ear drums. They’re a band that musicians and non-musicians alike can appreciate, there's a little something for everyone. He Is Legend released their latest album 'Few' on April 28th via they're new label Spinefarm Records and we got to speak with vocalist, Schuylar Croom, moments after stepping from the stage after an intense performance in Glasgow, Scotland.
Hey there Schuylar, how are you doing? You just finished up a show tonight correct?
Yeah man, just got off stage here in Glasgow and loaded out. It's all really great right now, everything is just really good. We're just overseas right now, just got done jamming as you know.
How has the tour been for you guys so far? Was it exciting to play the new material live?
Yeah, we're playing one or two new tracks which we've been kind of switching between when we're up on stage. But we pretty much just stuck to one new song on this European tour. The kids are loving it I think, they're getting down to it which is nice to see. I'm talking about the song 'Air Raid' by the way, it's pretty cool.
The new album is off to a great start and it's been doing some really good numbers on the charts so far. Were you happy with that or pleasantly surprised that it's been doing so well? It's very well deserved.
Thank you. We were definitely happy to see it do well in it's first week. While we've been over here in Europe it's kind of hard to get access to the internet all the time so you can check up on how things are doing. We don't really know when the next time that we get to see any numbers, so we've kind of been behind the curtain. But, when we get to a place where we can see what's going it's always a nice surprise to see how well it's doing. Definitely surprised though for sure, we're stoked to see people are enjoying it and especially our fans who are really into what's been going on.
The first track on the album, 'Air Raid', is one of the best openers on an album that's I've heard for quite some time. What's the process like when choosing where each song on the album ends up?
Right on. For us, I think we've always known what the last track would be. It's easier to pick a closer than it would be to pick an opener. I know that we kind of knew that 'Air Raid' was a special song and it was definitely in the 'banger' catagory. We didn't really think of it as being the first song on the album, but once we sat down and started listening to the way things were coming together it was easier to know and kind of work backwards from 'The Garden' and go in reverse and see where everything fell into place. But yeah, it definitely is a banger of a track and it's a cool opener for sure.
There's a lot of different elements when listening to a He Is Legend album. Do you go for a specific sound or do you just try and create hard rock music that's loud and sounds really good?
Yeah definitely the latter for sure. I think that with us we don't set out to sound like anyone or anything. But being in a rock band is just what we do best and what we've always wanted to do. I think generally when we are in our rehearsal space it's just rock and roll and that's all encompassing, whether it be White Zombie or Led Zeppelin, we just want to write rock and roll and music and play in a rock and roll band. I think if you go into it trying to sound like a certain thing then you'll come out of it looking like a fool.
When you went it to record the new album 'Few', as the main lyric writer did you have any theme in mind or were you going through anything at the time that may have had a big influence on the lyrics?
Yeah of course, you know almost everyone that writes lyrics would tell you that it's important to just be yourself and write clean and honest. On this records there were some things that I was trying to maybe leave up to the listener to decide what I was going through. Of course this is a pretty personal album, I was having a moment where I was left to my own devices and left alone, dealing with some inner demons and some personal things that were going on. But to me it's important for the fans to interpret things for themselves, you know? If I tell you what a song is about, then maybe a fan needs it to be about something else. There was no theme really for this album, I think the most important thing I've learnt after over a decade of doing this shit is that honesty is important, but if a whimsical aspect comes out of your music then you've got something beautiful there. I think that when writing the lyrics for this record it really came down to what was personal and what should be left out and what actually going to make in on this records. I've never really had any poetry experience, I like to write to the landscape that my lead guitarist Adam paints out for us and what comes out on the recording itself. I'm lucky in that aspect where Adam and Matt really hold down a solid Bob Ross landscape. It's given me a bigger paintbrush to make a story through.
With you guys being busy all the time with touring the world, is Australia on your agenda at all?
Australia would be on our agenda twice a month if we could get there. It's a matter of planning, of course if that tour comes through the wire then we would definitely love to be there. You better shout out to all the promoters over there to bring us over because we are ready.
Thanks for the chat, did you have any words for your Aussie fans before you head off?
We just miss you and love you and hope to see you soon so we can all have some fun together.
Few is out now via Spinefarm Records. Purchase from iTunes and all good music retailers.
Check out the music video for the track 'Air Raid' below: