Poison The Well
Clare Halls | Saturday, 14 March 2009
Poison The Well drummer Chris Hornbrook talks extensive touring and exclusively reveals the title of the band's new album.
DMG: You’re from Miami, right? How does a metal band build a fan base from there?
Chris: Yeah Miami and its brother and sister city. We just started really small and started off doing shows really locally and built it up fan by fan, I guess that’s the way to describe it.
DMG: What’s the scene like there at the moment?
Chris: Occassionally we go back there and when we do, because we’ve been around for a long time, the shows are pretty good. For the most part I feel like the scene is pretty dead. It’s nothing like a bigger city in the US like New York, Chicago or Los Angeles. For some reason Miami just feels like a dead end for music unless you play like aesthetic music or like weird nu-metal.
DMG: Miami just makes me think of that Will Smith video and rollerskates.
DMG: So is it really like that?
Chris: Yes and no. I mean the area of South Beach, I actually used to live by there [where the Will Smith video was shot]. But yeah it’s really, really nice, and it’s a really cool place and I enjoy living there but for music I feel like it’s a dead end.
DMG: How do you find coming to the UK?
Chris: Right now? Cold. But no, the UK is awesome. We’ve been here a few times on a lot of different tours, it’s always been really great and the kids have always been well receptive towards us. The shows have been really, really awesome.
DMG: You just got back from a tour in Australia. How was it there?
Chris: Our shows were really great, we had a great time and we met a lot of friends there. We did a festival with Every Time I Die and Dillinger Escape Plan so we were with a lot of great people. It was a little rough because we hadn’t toured in a while and that was like the first thing so we playing to thousands of kids while trying to get our tour legs back on. But it was awesome.
DMG: When you break from touring, what do you do?
Chris: Well the last break we had we were writing a record so I was doing that. Generally we don’t really have a lot of breaks. Maybe two weeks and at most a month. Typically during that time I hang out, play music, hang out with friends and such.
DMG: Do you find it better being on an indie label?
Chris: In certain respects, yes. In certain respects, no. It’s definitely great to be on an independent because you can do what you want and they don’t really hassle you. Whereas on a major they’re obviously trying to make money so they try to push you in a certain direction. The problem with being on indies is just lack of massive budgets and money for marketing to make the records go round. It’s nice to have the capital but that’s about it.
DMG: Do you get to see the places you go on tour?
Chris: It depends. I feel like if it's certain places that we haven’t been to that we’re interested in seeing we’re able to make the time. But if it's places we’ve been loads of times and we’ve either seen the sights or have no interest to see anything than we kind of don’t really care.
DMG: What do you think of Manchester?
Chris: Manchester is cool, although I haven’t seen a lot other than this block... and I’ve been here quite a few times! I really don’t know much about it. I know that the Smiths are from here.
DMG: Joy Division are from Greater Manchester too…
Chris: Joy Division are from here? Actually I like Joy Division better than the Smiths. But yeah I like the vibe here but I just haven’t been able to go out and explore.
DMG: How important is it for you to talk to people at your shows?
Chris: It’s just as important as people wanting to speak to me, I suppose. It depends on their level of priority. I don’t necessarily like go out my way to talk to people because I’m sort of an introverted person. But if someone comes up to me and strikes up a conversation and they have something nice to say about me or my band I’m very appreciative and humbled by that.
DMG: Any news on the new album?
Chris: We actually just finished it. Yeah we started end of November and finished the beginning of January.
DMG: Have you got a title for it yet?
Chris: Ummm we have a title...I don’t know if I’m supposed to say anything yet. But I guess it doesn’t matter. It’s called The Tropic Rot. Like tropical decay, rot. Yeah it’s pretty cool. I’m pretty stoked on the record.
DMG: Any musical change in direction?
Chris: If you were a fan of Versions, it’s definitely different to that but it still sounds like us. I think it’s better production and better performances on the songs. A bit more interesting song writing too.
DMG: What have you got planned for the rest of this year?
Chris: Well we’re going to finish off this run in the UK. Go over to Europe and finish off in Sweden, play the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Norway and then Greece and Luxemburg and back to the UK. After Belgium we go home for about a month and then start a US and Canada headliner. After that we’re talking about going to Russia and then we should be back here in time for festivals!