HUMAN, released on RCA Records and available now everywhere, was co-written by the band, produced by Gavin Brown and mixed by Chris Lorde-Alge and Nick Raskulinecz. THREE DAYS GRACE reteamed with producer Gavin Brown who produced the band's platinum selling 2003 self-titled album. CLICK HERE to watch a trailer the band created discussing the process and evolution of the new album.
Just last week THREE DAYS GRACE rocked New York City's Highline Ballroom in celebration of their album release. The band will take their vigorous live show back on the road for a series of spring and summer tour dates in support of HUMAN (see dates at http://www.threedaysgrace.com/events for updates).
Here's a brief conversation with THREE DAYS GRACE--MATT WALST (lead vocals), BARRY STOCK (lead guitar), BRAD WALST (bass), and NEIL SANDERSON (drums, percussion, keyboards, programming)--about the creation of the new album and their motivation as songwriters.
Do you feel the new album HUMAN is different than its predecessor?
Neil Sanderson (Drums): We went back to using Gavin Brown as producer and in the process re-discovered the rawness we had on our first record and second album. That was a conscious decision. Lyrically we are collaborative, we all like creating lyrics, melody and music together. We decided to tap into the raw dark emotions that everybody goes through. And in the past we have channeled those thoughts without shying away from the darkest most painful emotions of our lives and of the lives of the people around us. We really did that again and checked everything at the door and let everything come out on this record.
How did re-teaming with Gavin Brown play into how the album ultimately ended up?
Barry Stock (Guitar): Gavin helped remind us that-simplicity is beauty in songwriting. It's easy to write something so complex, poetic and abstract that only you can understand it. You feel enlightened, but it's difficult to write something that compelling, engaging and so real that the listener hears their own life in the song. That's what our goal is. Our goal is to write something real because we went through an experience or witnessed it. It's so blatantly real it's cut and dry. The person who listens to it hears their own life and relates back to it. As an artist, if you can put into words what people are feeling, then that's a really powerful thing. And Gavin brought us back to that exchange.
Describe the idea behind the new single "Human Race."
Brad Walst (Bass) : It's about the rat race and wondering what the point is of everybody being in a rush to go nowhere and being cold to one another, putting up the walls around yourself to look after #1. Where exactly are you going? We wrote that song on the bus late at night, actually the sun was coming up and we were coming into a big city. We went from looking at the beautiful countryside with total peace into this downtown metropolis with total grid-lock, rush hour sort of morning. Cars were honking at each other, people giving each other the finger out the window, everyone in a race to beat the street lights. We turned this into the idea of human race and losing sight of humanity by being caught up in your own personal life. When you alienate yourself to the world around you and lose touch of the connectivity between humans.
Can you talk about the driving force surrounding the creation of your new album?
Matt Walst (Vocals): It's a confessional, a social commentary of the beauty, weakness, power, and vulnerability of being human. On the flipside, it explores our ability to numb yourself from human feeling and connection and the ultimately negative consequences of that. Contriving and being manipulated, made into a consumer and the people that try to control you and the things beyond your control. All of the push-pull and the struggle of being a human being.
Describe a defining musical moment in your career.
Neil Sanderson (Drums): We did two shows opening for the Rolling Stones in Western Canada. Each show was 45,000 people. The stage was so big--I was playing drums--I hardly even saw the rest of the band the stage was so massive. We had a day off in between. The Rolling Stones' crew which was about 200 strong decide to throw a big party at the banquet hall. We were invited and so we went and sure enough all four Stones showed up. They were the most down to earth, grounded individuals. They'd watched our show the night before and told us how much they enjoyed it and having us out. They hung out and talked to us and there was no one ego in the room that night. They were legit cool and I can speak on behalf of everybody--it was inspiring to see the Stones as approachable, grounded people. From that day on we were like 'You know what man, if the Stones are that cool to everyone we must never lose sight of that. No one in our band that thinks their time is more important than anyone else. It was definitely a defining experience on a number of levels.