ROCHESTER, NY'S VERY OWN UNWILL IS GOING TO SHATTER YOU WITH PAST LIFE...Oct 2016
Based out of New York the band UNWILL have taken my earbuds to new heights and from talking with the band the music I have heard doesn’t even compare to what they are about to release.
IN 2015 the band pretty much emerge into the rock/alternative world with a debut single entitled CALM, a melodic ambience starts out the track and then blends or bleeds into a harsh fast paced scream fest all staying with melodic tones. A track that is a year old but still makes your ears stand up and take notice, makes me stand up and get intrigued with any band! Not only does the song catch your attention the master mind Josiah Moore depicts an artsy, creative piece of video to honor the band and promote them in an amazing, golden light.
With 2016 half way done the band has been very busy with works on the signing of record label Entertainment one/Lifeblood inc. and finishing up the debut disc entitled PAST LIFE which will hit streets on Oct 14, 2016
The band has grown and prospered and the 11 songs on PAST LIFE are going to hit you with grim honesty, dirty tones and crazy melody. With a vocalist who can kill it with harsh screams to beautiful tones I am honestly quite excited to get my hands on the package they have put together with PAST LIFE.
I had a chance to speak with the guys about the formation, the new record, the older songs I heard and the touring they are looking forward to.
UNWILL IS A NEWER BAND IN THE MUSIC WORLD, HOW DID YOU GUYS ALL MEET AND WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO GET TOGETHER?
The four of us have known each other for quite some time. Ethan (guitar) and Jeffrey (drums) went to high school together and started playing music with each other since freshman year. Cody (guitar) had been playing music in bands for a bit longer than the two of us, and we linked up with him pretty early on. We eventually needed to find a serious vocalist and Rocco (vocals) had been looking for a serious band at the same time so we had him try out a few years ago. So all in all the four of us have been playing and making music together for about four years, but UNWILL as a sound and energy didn’t come into its own until last year.
WHAT IS THE MEANING BEHIND THE BAND NAME AND HOW DOES THAT BAND NAME TRANSLATE INTO YOUR MUSIC?
The name is purposefully opaque and meant to incite thought. One of the things we want to do through music is open people’s minds to new ways of thinking. We feel that the name UNWILL is an invitation to reverse one’s previous ways of thinking—to play one’s own Devil’s advocate, so to speak. When coming up with the name we thought about what everything seems to come down to on a personal and universal level: it all came back to what you are willing or 'unwilling' to do in life.
HOW DOES UNWILL COME UP WITH SONGS IDEAS AS A BAND UNIT OR INDIVIDUALLY?
We don’t necessarily have one way of writing songs. Sometimes one of us will have a riff or rhythm or even rough song outline to bring to the table and other times we’ll just start playing something and it eventually coheres into something we all dig. In the end the songs are always a conglomeration of all our ideas, refined over time.
WHAT HAVE YOU TAKEN FROM YOUR OLDER BANDS GOOD OR BAD AND BROUGHT IT INTO THE BROTHERHOOD OR MUSIC OF UNWILL?
While Jeffrey and Ethan have always been in the same bands together, Cody and Rocco have their own experiences from previous groups. In the end, all those experiences were necessary to bring the four of us together, and we’re stronger and more united than ever. We communicate openly with one another and make decisions that are best for UNWILL, not us as individuals. All of this is what brought us to the point of finally being able to write the music we all wanted to write and to be the band we wanted to be.
HOW DID YOU HOOK UP WITH JOSIAH MOORE FOR THE VIDEO OF YOUR SONG CALM? WHAT DO YOU FEEL OF THE FINISH PRODUCT OF THE VIDEO AND HOW IT TRANSLATED THE MEANING OF THE SONG?
We were familiar with Josiah’s work primarily through the music videos he did for Sirens & Sailors (Rochester, NY). He’s also done videos for Ice Nine Kills, It Lives, It Breathes, Affiance, and more. Since this video was the first representation of UNWILL we wanted to make it visually stunning and we knew Josiah was the man for the job. The name “CALM” is of course ironic when paired with the high-energy song and spastic images. It’s more of a plea than a statement. Our minds are in a frenzy, perhaps now more than ever, and it’s important to hold onto those moments of 'calm' when and if they can be found.
THE SONG CALM JUST LISTENING TO THAT TRACK SEEMS LIKE VOCALLY YOU GUYS HAVE A LOT OF DIVERSITY IN THAT DEPARTMENT. FOR A BAND LIKE YOURS HOW IMPORTANT IS THAT FOR YOU GUYS?
Now that “CALM” is well over a year old we can say that while we’re proud of it, it doesn’t fully represent where UNWILL is going musically. In our upcoming debut album “PAST LIFE” Rocco’s vocals are even more diverse and refined. We are continuing to evolve our sound, and we look forward to getting this new music out there.
ANOTHER SONG I HEARD WAS RITUAL ESCAPE; A VERY INTERESTING SONG TITLE. TELL ME ABOUT THE TRACK WHEN YOU GUYS WROTE IT AND THE PROCESS OF WRITING THAT SONG?
We wrote “RITUAL ESCAPE” a little over a year ago now, and like “CALM” it’s definitely from a slightly younger UNWILL. While “CALM” begins with some restraint, “RITUAL ESCAPE” starts off heavy and eventually breathes into a more relaxed bridge before the very end. These two songs show us experimenting a bit with song structure and trying new things. Lyrically, “RITUAL ESCAPE” deals more with feeling trapped inside oneself and one’s circumstances, and the important struggle of getting yourself out. No one will do it for you.
THE VIDEO FOR RITUAL SHOWS YOUR LIVE SETTING. HOW IMPORTANT IS IT FOR YOU GUYS TO SHOW YOUR FANS HOW ENERGENTIC YOU ARE ON A LIVE SETTING?
Being on stage is our opportunity to visually represent what UNWILL is in a very physical way. None of our on-stage performance is for the sake of energy—it simply is our energy, organically. The way we feel internally when we write these songs is conveyed externally in a live setting. The music, our videos, and our live show are inseparable entities. They all convey the energy and intention of UNWILL.
FOR THE MUSIC YOU PLAY WHERE DO YOU SEE THE SCENE IN 5 YEARS?
As a whole 2016 has been a great year for new music. Everything we do is deeply rooted in rock (especially in our upcoming album) and if anything, the entire rock music scene is only continuing to grow and prove its relevance. We believe that will still be true five years from now.
YOU SIGNED WITH ENTERTAINMENT ONE MUSIC/LIFEBLOOD INC. WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN AND WHAT MADE YOU GUYS WANNA WORK WITH THEM?
We've been going through this process and working with Entertainment One/Lifeblood Inc. for a while now. We've gotten to know what the label is about and what they could do for us and this album. That is the main reason we knew they were the best option for getting “PAST LIFE” out there in the way we want to. We're proud to be working with them and excited for the future.
YOU’RE RELEASING IN OCT YOUR DEBUT ALBUM PAST LIFE, WHY SUCH THE WAIT ON IT AND HOW MUCH GROWTH DO YOU GUYS FEEL YOU HAVE MADE WORKING THROUGH THE PROCESS OF MAKING A DEBUT DISC?
We have a lot of awesome things in the works in relation to the album. The timeline we have set for its release allows us to really focus in on those things to get people excited for “PAST LIFE.” The growth this band has gone through in the past year of making this album is unbounded, and we've truly figured out who we are musically and who want to be as a band and we feel that really shows in the album.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE HARDEST PART OF PUTTING A DEBUT ALBUM TOGETHER?
Nothing about creating this album has been easy, so it's hard to focus on any one thing as the 'hardest part.' We love what we do and we drive off of challenge. That’s what has gotten us through this entire process. Anything truly worth doing is never going to be easy—making this album has been no exception.
WHAT 3 SONGS OFF THE DEBUT DISC ARE YOU GUYS OVERLY EXCITED FOR FANS TO HEAR AND WHY?
To be honest, we truly have a hard time picking favorites off the album. We put the same amount of effort into every song we create, so we're seriously excited to have fans hear it in its entirety: we're proud of every second of it. With that being said, we will be putting out two singles off of “PAST LIFE” before its release and we definitely think those songs will get people very excited to hear the rest of the album.
WHY THE NAME PAST LIFE FOR THE ALBUM TITLE?
“PAST LIFE” became the embodiment of everything we were writing about when the album was being created. Throughout its eleven songs the album covers a lot thematically but its focus remains on overcoming self-doubt and those dark parts of your own mind: leaving that life in the past.
HOW IMPORTANT IS MELODY TO YOU GUYS IN WRITING MUSIC?
Melody is a huge part of our music, especially on “PAST LIFE.” Without the melodies these songs contain, whether conveyed through guitar or vocals, they would lack a lot of the emotion they need to get the meaning across to the listener. Everything we write and everything we do as a band aims to make people feel something. Without melody in the music a lot of that would be lost.
DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING SET IN STONE FOR TOURING IN THE NEAR FUTURE AND WHAT BAND WOULD YOU LOVE TO LEARN FROM ON THE ROAD?
We are currently in the process of booking tours for the remainder of 2016. Our next date is August 3rd in Erie, PA with We Came As Romans and Islander. All future tours and dates will be announced as soon as they are set in stone. As far as learning on the road, we would love to learn from bands who have been doing it forever. We could learn a lot from bands like Deftones and Korn who are still killing it after twenty years.
We are extremely excited to get “PAST LIFE” out into the world this October. Keep your eyes peeled for our first two singles off of the album in the upcoming months
JUST A GIRL WHO LOVES MUSIC BEING CREATIVE AND WRITING, THAT IS HOW THE EAST COAST ROMPER BECAME WHAT IT IS FOR THE MODERN ROCK WORLD