Interview: Your Demise

Hi Res YOUR DEMISE 2013 PROMO by Felix Dickinson

 The story of a band writing an album that’s a bit of a departure from their traditional sound, and facing fierce backlash as a result, is far from unique. But there are few examples in recent memory from the hardcore world that received more attention than the UK’s Your Demise, upon the release of their third proper full-length, The Golden Age earlier in 2012. The debate among listeners as to whether the record should be applauded as a depiction of a band pursuing their true artistic vision, or disparaged as an example of “selling out”, has persisted over the past several months thanks to the Internet’s uncanny ability to bring out the most sensational criticisms music fans have to offer. decided it’d be appropriate to get the band members’ perspective on this topic, as well as a few others. Luckily drummer James Tailby was able to take the time to chat with us, and offer a firsthand account of what this year has been like for Your Demise.


The Golden Age, while critically acclaimed, was met with very mixed reactions from fans upon its release. Now that the album has been out for a while, have you seen it grow at all on people who responded unfavorably to it initially?

Absolutely. When TGA was first released it was almost like some sort of fad to talk shit about us, whether it was about the music itself or some shit like the amount of hats we like to wear; it was so funny. I don’t think that the vast majority of those people were really paying attention to the music though, and once the dust had settled after the release, and they went back to it, a lot of them changed their tune and started to appreciate it for what it is.


Do you guys plan on continuing to incorporate more of a pop-punk sound into your music on future releases?

We’re all huge fans of skate punk; it’s what we grew up listening to, so if that continues to shine through in our future songs, then I’ll be happy for sure.


Did you know prior to the release of the album that there would be some backlash due to the stylistic changes the band made?

Of course. We put ourselves out there by doing what we wanted to do, and we also knew that some people weren’t going to like it. We were prepared for people to start talking negatively, but at the same time, we frankly couldn’t have cared less – we’re happy!

It seems like bands who play heavy music are constantly having their legitimacy called into question by people who think they know best when it comes to what “real hardcore” is. If you read online comments or message boards, the elitism can be pretty overwhelming. So, as people who have dedicated their lives to music, does this kind of thing ever get to you?

Nah, we never let it get to us. People can bitch and moan all they want, that’s cool. They’re probably not on a month long tour of Japan, or playing shows in Indonesia are they though, y’know?


The Golden Age
features a slew of guest vocalists. What are some active bands that you’d love to collaborate with musically in the future?

We’d love to collaborate with some artists outside of the rock world. We’re all avid fans of hip-hop and various forms of electronic music, so working with an established artist in those fields would be dope. In a dream world, we’d be working with Kanye West, One Direction, Wu Tang and Taylor Swift. Imagine that.


You guys recently released a trailer for an upcoming Your Demise tour documentary. What inspired you guys to go through with this
project, and what details can you tell us about it?

We basically just think it’s cool when bands give an insight into what actually goes on on tour, or behind the scenes, to fans, who perhaps wouldn’t normally get the chance to see that side of being in a band. Plus, it gave us a chance to act like idiots in front of a camera for a while – something we’re quite good at.


What’s one particularly memorable moment you can share from one of the many festival dates you guys played this summer?

I guess my personal favourite memory from this year’s festival run was Groezrock in Belgium. We played with Rancid and Refused, who are literally my two favourite bands of all time. Rancid were eating lunch in catering at the next table from us, and our homie Chazz worked up the courage to go say hello to Tim Armstrong. He did so, and on his return to the table, sat for an hour and cried because it was “the best day of his life”. Bless him.


You guys will soon be embarking on a month-long Japanese tour with support from Fact. You’ve had the opportunity to play in Japan before; what’s the hardcore/punk scene like there, in comparison to Western markets?

Japan is amazing as a whole. The shows are great, the people are amazing and it’s probably the nicest country I’ve ever been fortunate enough to visit. The scene is so strong over there. There are so many people that are incredibly passionate about music, and work hard to make Japan one of the greatest places to play shows in the world.


It’s my understanding that the band is extremely passionate about football (not to be confused with handegg), as well as skateboarding. If you could have your music featured on the soundtrack of an upcoming FIFA, Skate, or Tony Hawk video game, but had to choose only one, which would it be? And which song would you choose to have featured?

Haha, good question! Well, if you’d asked me that like ten years ago, I’d have been all about having a tune on Tony Hawk, because that’s where I heard a bunch of music that I loved for the first time. But now, it’d definitely be FIFA, no doubt. Just because it’s our favourite game, we play it 24/7, and it would be so dope to have one of our tunes on the soundtrack!


Are there any words you’d like to leave with fans who are going to be reading this?

Thank you for being fans of our silly little band. There isn’t a day that goes by that we’re not all eternally grateful for the opportunity we’ve been given, and thankful for all the support we have from all across the globe. One love, Jah Bless.


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