Animal Confession is a hard rock band from Ottawa, Ontario. With influences ranging from Radiohead to Pink Floyd and with the help of producer Chris Crerar, the band's album, which has been in the works for quite a while, is finally seeing the light of the day this week. Entitled “Bright Light, Dark Eyes”, it is expected to captivate listeners with its mix of heavy and soft sounds as well as much more. Read what Andrew, with a few interventions from Pat and Trevor, had to say about the band's journey and their album among other things.
CONFRONT: Can I start by having a little history 101 about the band?
ANDREW: We started writing about a year and a half ago with our bass player, we rehearsed for a while and wrote some songs and then we hired a drummer to record our album in Toronto. After that, we played a few shows and we started looking around for a permanent drummer. We got Trevor eventually and that’s where we are now.
CONFRONT: And how exactly did you meet your bandmates?
ANDREW: Want to take this one Pat?
PAT: I was looking for a band and Andrew was looking for a live drummer and a live bassist for his project. He got me learning the three demo songs, we met up a few weeks afterwards, the audition went pretty well and everything was just decided on the spot. We were a good match.
CONFRONT: Cool! And what’s the story behind the band’s name?
ANDREW: It started as being just this form of expression for me to express what I like to through music.
CONFRONT: Nowadays, to stand out you really need to be unique. I read that you guys, use a variety of dynamics to do that, could you elaborate?
ANDREW: We tend to go from a heavy sound to slower, more ambient sounds; we like to switch things up that way.
CONFRONT: That sounds interesting. Speaking of your sound, let’s talk about your album a little bit (“Bright Light, Dark Eyes”). It’s coming out this week right?
ANDREW: Yeah on Tuesday.
CONFRONT: And what’s the story behind the sort of contrasting title?
ANDREW: The subject matter that I first started writing about had to do with being caught off-guard and being a deer in the headlights; kind of having your world turned upside-down a little bit. So “Bright Light, Dark Eyes” sort of came from those ideas.
CONFRONT: And you mentioned starting to work on songs about a year ago but I had read that you had actually started writing songs for it in 2009?
ANDREW: I did. I was sort of between bands and I wasn’t doing much musically so I just started doing stuff on my guitar and coming up with the initial ideas for the basic sound of the band.
CONFRONT: Did you ever think it would get this far?
ANDREW: No! *laugh* It was a really long and drawn out process. I really worked hard on songs and I worked hard on getting the right guys together for the project so it’s definitely come a long way.
CONFRONT: And how does it feel to see all this work come together in a material form that is the album?
ANDREW: It’s pretty awesome! It’s hard to describe. When you come up with an idea and then it turns into something really tangible and something you can hear and touch. We have our CDs printed so it becomes very real. It’s a pretty cool feeling.
CONFRONT: It must be! Now, the fact that you are now three people and not only yourself anymore, how does that affect the writing/recording process?
ANDREW: I think with Trevor in the band now, we’re probably going to do things a little differently than we did with the last album, which was pretty much all Pat and myself in the writing process. Now that we have Trevor, we have a different dynamic and we have a different way of writing songs. Definitely, it’s going to be different and the key is just to figure out how it naturally comes together between the three of us.
CONFRONT: That makes sense! And which track means the most to you?
ANDREW: I would
probably say “The Last Time” is probably my personal favorite off the album. It just hits on some pretty intense emotions. If you listen to the song, it’s pretty obvious what was going on there so it was just a personal thing and to get that out in that way was very satisfying.
CONFRONT: Songwriting must be very therapeutic for you then right?
ANDREW: Absolutely. It’s catharsis actually, for me. I think maybe we’ll catch up on different topics that are a little less intense but there’s always something in terms of things to talk about and to sing about.
CONFRONT: Right. And how was working with Chris Crerar?
ANDREW: He was a great guide. He’s like an extra member of the band; he fits in as well as any of us into the band. He took an extra year to guide us the right way and what he thinks was best for us. He’s kind of like an overseer. He’s really into the same stuff as us and he understands what we’re going for so working with him was very easy actually.
CONFRONT: That’s cool. How did it all come along? How did you guys start working with him?
ANDREW: I knew Chris from years ago from a previous band and we just kept in contact. He’s just such an easy person to get along with. On top of being very talented as a producer, he’s really cool and easy-going guy. He does his job well.
CONFRONT: I think that always works out better too, when there’s a connection.
CONFRONT: In today’s era of short attention spans and internet takeover, how do you guys have to adapt as musicians?
ANDREW: I think our songs have a lot of layers to them and I think when you listen to them, you get something different each time. I think that’s how we’re going to hold people’s attention, just by creating the best possible quality music we can.
CONFRONT: And do you really exploit social media?
ANDREW: Yeah, very much. We’re quite a lot into Twitter lately. We tweet a lot; it’s kind of addicting! We sort of exploded lately in the followers section. I just post a lot more than I used to because I think it’s reaching a lot more people. We’re getting a lot more Facebook likes as a result of that.
CONFRONT: I feel like nowadays, people need to feel close to the artists so when you tweet a lot, there’s that connection.
ANDREW: Yeah! It doesn’t even have to be related to music. We just post about any stupid thing.
CONFRONT: Exactly. Fans feel like they’re really getting to know you that way! And what are your plans for the rest of the year and for the next year?
PAT: Promote the album, play as many shows as possible, do the whole Toronto-Montreal thing play some festivals, stuff like that!
CONFRONT: So pushing yourselves out there!
PAT: Yeah with shows.
CONFRONT: Usually, when I have a face to face interview, I ask people to draw something that represents them. If I were to ask you that, what would you have drawn?
ANDREW: I would definitely do the head of a lion because I’m a Leo.
PAT: Trevor hasn’t answered a question yet so I’ll put him on the spot for this!
TREVOR: I’d draw a stick figure man because I’m the worst artist in the world.
CONFRONT: That’s what everyone always tells me but then it usually comes out looking pretty cool!
PAT: I’d draw some old shoes because that’s what I have on this morning and it’s really hard to draw.
CONFRONT: Cool! Well that’s it for me!
ANDREW: Thanks a lot!
To learn more about the band, check out these links:
Official site: animalconfession.com