DATE OF INTERVIEW:
26th June 2008
Formed back in 1994 in their home city of Anchorage, Alaska, one-time Roadrunner signings 36 Crazyfists departed from their previous label to ink a deal with Ferret Music in 2007, which has since spawned the release of new album, 'The Tide And Its Takers' at the end of May 2008. Labelled by the media as anything from nu-metal to metalcore and post-harcore, in essence, 36 Crazyfists simply produce well written metal songs, with the latest release no exception and marking a heavier direction for the band. I posed a series of questions to frontman Brock Lindow about the new abum, touring, their popularity in the UK, etc...
METAL DISCOVERY: The new album, 'The Tide And Its Takers', is came out at the end of May, although you allowed people the chance to pre-listen to the release in its entirety through streaming audio on your MySpace page. What prompted this
move - a suggestion of Ferret Music, or a decision you made as a band?
MD: The new album will be your debut release for Ferret Music since departing from Roadrunner. How does being signed to Ferret compare to Roadrunner?
MD: The new album marks a 'heavier' direction in your song writing, and I can hear a greater 'maturity' in your compositional style (love the new stuff, btw!). Was this a conscious decision to write heavier material, or did the music just turn out that way?
MD: Andy Sneap's mixed your new album - the second time you've worked with him I believe? If he's always available and affordable, will you strive to use him on every release?
MD: Were you present at Backstage Studios when Andy Sneap mixed the new album, or is that something he did completely independent from the band?
MD: Were you ever fans of Sabbat?
MD: I've always regarded the music of 36 Crazyfists as just really well written metal tunes, although the media has incessantly tried to label your band as all kinds of sub-genres from nu-metal to metalcore. Do you think this kind of labelling has ever restricted 36 Crazyfists from reaching a wider metal audience who might perhaps, for example, be put off by a 'nu-metal' tag?
BROCK LINDOW: Yeah, it was a group thought between band and label.
BL: We love being on Ferret and extremely thankful they signed us.
BL: There never is a concsious thought or plan, we just get in the room and let it all hang out. I was very pleased to hear the music Holt and Thomas were writing - I think it covers the ground on all areas of our band's capabilities.
BL: This is the third album with ol' Sneap and he is a great friend. Holt and Sneap are a great team as well. I think he will always be our mixer of choice.
BL: This is the first time that he did it all alone, but we knew he knows what we like so it was no problem.
(Brock Lindow on the inanity of metal's sub-genres)
"...the Nu-metal tag is a way for a journalist to belittle a band, I guess that's the way the word metalcore is being thrown around now as well."
BL: I think the Nu-metal tag is a way for a journalist to belittle a band, I guess that's the way the word metalcore is being thrown around now as well. I don't pay attention to it, I write music with my best friends and we are lucky enough that people all over the world can listen to it if they choose to. It's good enough for me!
MD: The UK has been very good for you over the years and you seem to play more dates over here than elsewhere in Europe (although I do remember seeing you play to a near sold-out Melkweg venue in Amsterdam back in 2005!). To what would you attribute your success in the UK, or is it simply one of those random, just got lucky over here kind of things?
BL: The UK has been amazing since the first trip over in 2002. They always stuck with us and built itself bigger and bigger each time. We're very grateful to the UK for their loyalty.
MD: I've heard you talk about your Alaskan roots in previous interviews and how important this is to your identity, which has inspired some of your songs lyrically, such as in 'Song For The Fisherman'. Do you miss living in Alaska, and are your roots still an inspiration to you artistically?
BL: Iím very passionate about home and I have moved back home about three years ago after living in Portland, Oregon, for about 7 years. It's wonderful to be back in a place I love so dearly.
MD: I've heard you're pretty much regulars on the bill of the annual Summer Meltdown Festival in Anchorage, Alaska. How important is it to you to be able to return to your home city and play back where it all began for 36 Crazyfists?
BL: Itís mandatory for us to give back to our people and show them how much we love them as well as our home state.
MD: You recently undertook a lengthy tour of the States with, among other bands, Napalm Death. How did the tour go, and was it cool playing with death metal icons such as the guys from Napalm?
BL: Well the tour ruled and DevilDriver are some of the greatest people I've ever met along with Napalm. Napalm are legends and it was so cool to see them every night. We made life long friends with all the bands.
MD: Do you have the same level of enthusiasm for touring these days as you did in your youth?
BL: No, I donít enjoy touring that much anymore, but I still love playing live so it's a love hate relationship. I'd much rather be home with my wife and our two dogs.
MD: What band or bands have you been most 'honoured' to share a stage with at a gig and/or festival?
BL: Testament, Metallica, Slayer, Killswitch Engage, Rage Against The Machine. I could go on forever...
MD: Every band seems to have had some sort of Spinal Tap moment on tour - do you have any amusing stories from the road in recent years?
BL: I think as the years go on there are all these great stories built up. But I can't think of anything worth writing at the moment. I guess we have a rep for partying pretty good....we do a lot of stupid stuff.
MD: Moving away from your own music for a moment, are there any bands out there you'd like to recommend to visitors of Metal Discovery that you believe deserve to be 'discovered' (apart from your own band, of course!)?
BL: The Mediam (Portland, Oregon), Kallahan (Anchorage, Alaska), Across the Sun (Portland, Oregon).
MD: And for people reading this who have yet to discover 36 Crazyfists, why should people go and check you guys out?
BL: Because we are sexy as hell!
36 Crazyfists promo photo - 2007
Photograph copyright © 2007 Brian Lee -
Interview by Mark Holmes
Official 36 Crazyfists Website:
Official 36 Crazyfists MySpace:
36 CRAZYFISTS DISCOGRAPHY
In The Skin (1997)
Bitterness The Star (2002)
A Snow Capped Romance (2004)
Ferret Music Website:
Brock's band recommendation - The Mediam:
Brock's band recommendation - Kallahan:
Brock's band recommendation - Across The Sun:
MD: Thanks very much for your time in answering these questions, sincere best of luck with the new album, and I wish you greater success signed to Ferret Music.
BL: Thank you soo much....peace.
Rest Inside The Flames (2006)
The Tide And Its Takers (2008)