We had a very exciting interview opportunity with rockers Thrice, who are about to release a new album. Find out how we got on below!
By Jane Howkins
You’re releasing a new album titled Palms soon. Are you excited for the release? What can you tell us about the album, and what has changed since the last release?
We’re always really excited to release new music, and that applies to Palms as well. We put a ton of time and energy into the writing and recording process, and we handled some of the producing and engineering duties for the first time since Beggars, so there’s an even bigger investment in that regard. I think it’s our most sonically diverse record since The Alchemy Index, and one of the strongest batches of songs we’ve ever written.
You recently joined Epitaph records. How has it been working with them? They’ve got a very good history – were you a fan of the label and their roster beforehand?
Epitaph has been awesome. They’re really accommodating, easy to communicate with, and their team works really hard to help us see our creative vision through. Being on the label is a dream come true in a lot of ways, because we all grew up listening to Epitaph bands, and have always had a tremendous level of respect for the label’s history and ethics.
Your last album was quite political in nature. Is this something we can expect from the new album? What made you want to take that turn last time around?
The concept behind Palms is intentionally more broad than the concept(s) behind To Be Everywhere Is To Be Nowhere. TBEITBN dealt with specific issues like gun violence, drone warfare, whistleblowing, greed, etc. And while those issues are still pervasive in the US, the issue at the root of all of that is a striking lack of empathy, openness, and civility in American life, and that’s what Palms is all about. . We were in Europe for three-and-a-half weeks, which was our longest tour over there in quite a while and something that was long overdue.
You recently did a few dates around Europe, and we managed to catch you at Download Festival in the UK. Did you have a good time there? Did you manage to catch any of the other acts?
We had a blast. The shows – whether they were festivals or club shows – were amazing, the crowds were great, and we were touring with an awesome band, Brutus. Aside from getting to see Brutus play at every club show, we got to get our faces melted by Meshuggah a couple of times, and got to catch up with our good friends in Underoath and Rise Against. We can’t wait to tour over there again.
How do you find playing a festival differs to a normal gig, and which do you prefer? What are you favourite festivals to go to, either playing or as a punter?
They each have positive aspects. Festivals are great because they afford you an opportunity to play in front of a ton of people who might not have heard of your band, or have but would never go to a show, or people who have a preconceived notion about the band that can be changed with a great performance. There’s also the benefit of getting to catch up with so many old touring friends, and sharing the stage with bands you love but probably wouldn’t be asked to tour with (see: Meshuggah). Headlining club shows are great because you’re playing to (mostly) your fans, and the energy between the band and the crowd is pretty impossible to duplicate in a festival setting.
Do you have any more dates coming up, to correlate with the release of the new album?
We are doing a headline tour of the US with The Bronx and Teenage Wrist that will run from mid-September to mid-November, and we’re headed to Australia in February for the first time in a decade. We’re really stoked about both of those tours. We’ll probably do a couple more tours in the US in 2019 and return to the UK and Europe as well. I don’t go to many festival as a punter, but really enjoy a majority of the UK and European festivals we play (as a fan) because the bills are usually pretty diverse.
You released a new single back in June titled The Grey. What can you tell us about that, and why did you decide to release that as a single? Is it representative of the album as a whole?
We chose The Grey as the lead single because the label suggested it might be a good follow-up to Black Honey for the radio. We agreed. I don’t think it’s a great representation of the record as a whole, but that said, I don’t really think there’s a single song on the record that “best” encapsulates all the different feels and dynamics that Palms has on it. The song itself is a mash-up of a dirty riff idea Teppei had, and a bunch of other different parts and ideas that we mixed and matched and tweaked and fiddled with until we were happy with them. That’s kinda par for the course for Thrice’s writing process – throw a bunch of stuff in the blender, see what comes out, and fine-tune it from there.
Do you have plans to release any more singles in the near future?
Not sure when this interview is gonna run, but there will be another single released before the album comes out on 14/9.
Why do you think people should come and see you live, and what can people expect from a Thrice show?
I think we’re a tight, dynamic, mostly heavy, rock band that sounds really good live (thanks to our front-of-house engineer). We don’t talk a ton onstage, or do backflips, or synchronized jumps, or have ego ramps, or shoot confetti cannons, or have pyro, but we put on a good show if you like music.
Any last words for the fans?
Thanks to everyone who has supported us in any way, at any time, whether they’ve been a fan since 2000, or just got into us last week. We’re extremely grateful to be able to do what we do, and if nobody ever cared, I sincerely doubt we’d still be doing it.