Interview: Spirit and the Bride
Hey everybody! It's been awhile. I apologize for the lack of posts as of late. I've been extremely busy, and there hasn't been that much to write about in the last month or so. Hopefully, I'll have some new stuff coming. Maybe even a new sampler... Anyways, on April 15, I interviewed most of the band, known as Spirit and the Bride from OnTheAttack! Records. I spoke to Josh Simmons, Adam Simmons and Josh Summerville. The band's Bassist, Jeremiah Medley was unfortunately unavailable to join us, as he had to work. But, anyways here we are! We primarily spoke about the band's new album Dry Bones and spirituality. We also talked about The Office and School of Rock, but those aren't in this. :) Hope you enjoy!
How are you guys?
Adam and Josh Simmons: Doing good man! Preparing for our CD release show.
Nice! Could you give a quick background on the band?
Adam: I played in a lot of so-called "Christian" bands, but Josh wasn't really into the band stuff.
Josh: Later on I rescued Adam from an indie rock band. I was like "come be in a band with me"! We went through some lineup changes and were around for two years before playing our first show in 2010. Shoutout to Devin Scarth and Preston Tucker for helping us out.
You said Devin Scarth and who else?
Josh: Preston Tucker. So Devin came in a year after we formed and Preston came in right after he left. Jeremiah is our current Bassist. He's not here right now, he had to work. Devin runs a studio called Copperfox Recordings and Preston leads worship at a church here.
Cool! So you guys released a full length titled With Eyes and Ears to See and Hear, and Dry Bones is coming out in May through OnTheAttack! Records.
How long have you been signed to OnTheAttack?
Adam: That's just it man. So, here's the deal. We had already released With Eyes and Ears to See and Hear independently. We'd put it out on Bandcamp and everything...
Josh: We were looking for labels, keeping our options open. OnTheAttack actually sent us two messages asking about a deal. David re-released the album through OnTheAttack with a loose contract. He said he'd release other music of ours if we wanted, and that's how Dry Bones came about.
Adam: Originally, we didn't have the money to do anything with the album ourselves or even have an offical CD release show. We did a show with Norma Jean and we were like "This is it!" and did it then, but nothing official.
That's interesting. Were you guys signed to any other label?
Nope. Ok. So you guys pulled what I call a Becoming the Archetype and re-wrote a hymn as a metal song.
Adam: Oh! They did one of those? Which one did they do? I haven't heard that.
Yeah they did "How Great Thou Art" on Dichotomy. Great album. Anyways, how'd that turn out?
Adam: Well that's my favorite hymn. Josh and I were raised in a holiness denomination.
Josh: I think that was a good experience for us. Bands like For Today and Sleeping Giant were kind of surprisingly spiritual and influenced how we bring our message.
Adam: You know what's funny? Everytime I hear someone sing "Doxology", they're doing it wrong. [Writer's note: Adam went off on a small tangent, where he spoke about the time signatures of the song, and I got kind of lost there to be quite honest.]
Josh: Well that's Adam for you. Talking about time signatures and the such.
*Laughs* So onto my next question. Is there a story behind the new song "Bloodline"?
Josh: There totally is! I was a Church service, where the message was about being brought into the Bloodline of Christ. I was just jotting down notes. It's about casting our sins into the sea of forgiveness, a song of Revelation. It's about Christ being the father, and we are his sons and daughters. We're brought into the "Bloodline" so to speak. [Writer's note: Josh said a lot of profoundly spiritual and amazing things that I couldn't write everything down. This is the basic idea of what he was saying...very basic.] What's funny is, I have permanent writer's block. Now we have like 17-20 full written songs. My wife Tara helped me write a new song for Dry Bones called "Open Heaven". Shoutout to her.
That's really awesome! That question kinda led into my next question; Is Dry Bones a concept album?
Adam: Yeah, it's definitely a concept album, though I don't think it's in chronological order...
Josh: It's not.
Adam: Yeah, it's not in chronological order, but it's definitely a concept album. The lyrics of each song deal with everything from being in the Bloodline of Christ, ("Bloodline") to praying for the heavens to open, ("Open Heavens") to the epiphany of the thief on the cross. The whole album, musically, is more on the metalcore side of things. [Writer's note: Once again, this is the more basic version of what Adam said.] The album has a spiritual progression throughout. We've all been through hard times, contrary to popular belief. God provided a way for us to rid ourselves of self-hatred.
How would you guys describe your style? Metalcore? or Hardcore?
Josh: Definitely hardcore. Spirit filled Hardcore with some old school Hardcore.
Adam: Yeah, but also, I, personally, like some of the old punk stuff, so I try to incorporate that stuff into it as well.
Cool, cool. [Writer's note: Up until this part of the interview, the band's guitarist Josh Summerville avoided the interview, cause of fear of being recorded. He answered the last few questions. From this point on, he will be identified as "Josh S."...even though both of their last names begin with S.] Hey you might want to get your guitarist over here, he might want to answer some of these final questions. What gear do you guys use?
Josh: MICROPHONE! *Laughs*
I knew you were going to say that! And that's why I asked if your guitarist would come over *Laughs*
Josh S: I use PV 6505 cabs and heads. I have a Jackson Dinky series Guitar. DR strings...
Adam: Not just strings, black beauties!
Josh S:...DR black beauties. And I have a tie-dye strap.
Adam: I play a Gretch kit, with a pearl snare, as well as Zildjian and Sabian cymbals. Interestingly enough, I have 16 in. hi-hats, rather than the normal 14 in. hi-hats. I also use 5B American hickory Promark sticks and I've been using the same Double-bass pedals since 2007.
Sick! I'm a drummer too and personally prefer Sabian cymbals. Also, I bought a double-bass about...over a year ago now. Have you heard of the company, Sweetwater?
Josh and Adam: Yeah.
I ordered the double-bass and...they sent me candy with it.
Josh: That's bribery at it's finest.
*Laughs* yeah. So are there any local bands in your area?
Adam: Yeah there are tons!
Josh: Let's see... Eternal Void, The Earth Laid Bare... actually let's begin with the CD release show lineup. Grave Friends, Pickwick Commons, their from Indy, you should now them, and a new Christian metal band, Returning His Crown. Glassworld...
Yeah, I've heard of Glassworld, it's the Bassist of Corpus Christi right?
Josh: Yes, Steph Roat.
I guess Corpus Christi counts as a local act too don't they?
Hey yeah, that reminds me! You guys played a show with them here recently right?
Josh: Yeah we did. It was awesome!
What's with them? I thought they were working on a new album.
Josh: Yeah I don't know man. They aren't playing very much anymore. Anyways, back to your original question. Obnoxious Boot, Current Events, you can't google them, cause all you'll get is THE current events. Avanti, Saving Shemiah, 2 Seconds 2 Late...I think that's it. Oh, you should check out our side project, Hoof Hearted. [Writer's note: Just read that a couple times...]
Josh: I've heard of Wait for the Day...but not As Earth Fades.
They're really good. Check them out.
Josh: Will do.
What have you guys been listening to here lately?
Josh: Bethel Worship... a lot of Bethel Worship. Poured Out...
Did you hear their breaking up?
Josh: yeah...bummer man.
Josh: For Today, Sleeping Giant, A Plea for Purging, Nothing Left, Derek Minor, Social Club, Beach Boys, Mogley the Iceburg, and Blessed by a Broken Heart.
Mogley the Iceberg? *Laughs*
Josh: Don't laugh man, their really good.
I'm not saying their bad, I'm just saying that their name is hilarious. *Laughs* Anyways, what would you guys say your influences are?
Josh: Advent, old Norma Jean...
Like Luti-Kriss era? or just like early Norma Jean?
Josh S: No, like O' God the Aftermath era.
Oh ok. Continue.
Josh: Comeback Kid and The Red Baron. I think they're from Indiana.
Man, it's been awhile since I've heard that name. I don't know if they're from here though. Weren't they on Blood & Ink Records?
Josh: I don't know. It was either Blood & Ink or Facedown. But they were really good.
Josh S: Just looked it up. They were on Blood & Ink. And they were from Florida. Sooo not even close.
Josh: Oh. *Laughs* Oh, and Venia.
[Writer's note: Adam returned from wherever he had gone, where I asked him about influences.] Adam do you have any additional influences to add?
Adam: The Chariot was an big influence to me personally.
Yeah, I kinda got that idea from you guys. I don't know why, but the music kinda reminded me of them. Not as chaotic, but.
Adam: Yeah I don't know. We've been called Djent before, which we definitely aren't...
Well, to be quite honest with ya, I kinda got that feeling too. Not like all of your music, just like one part of one song. Well, is there anything else you guys would like to say?
Josh: Thanks for interviewing us man! Have a Happy Easter!
Yeah man! You too!
Well that's that! I'd like to thank the guys in the Spirit and the Bride. Also, go check out "Bloodline" on my sampler, here below. The band is playing their CD release show on June 3rd, with The Earth Laid Bare, Grave Friends, Pickwick Commons, and Returning His Crown. Go check that out!
The Bearded Dragon