If somehow, groundbreaking progressive metalcore act I’ll Be An Empire have escaped your attention, change that now. This crushing, yet groovy Atlanta-based sextet have taken the underground world by storm with the recent release of two singles from their upcoming album, Aquarius. Now, shortly after announcing their signing with Total-Deathcore, the formal date for Aquarius’ release has been set for May 17th. To keep you placated until we can get our hands on the album for review, were able to get some words with these kind, southern Gentlemen.
Connor Welsh: First thing’s first, thanks so much guys for taking the time to answer some questions! I really appreciate it! Second, if you guys could introduce yourselves/self and fill in the blanks on what you do in the band, that’d be cool!
I’ll Be An Empire: Alex is one of the vocalists, one of the lyricists and also handles mastering, production and graphic design. Austin is the other vocalist and lyricist. Nick writes most of our music and plays guitar. David writes some music and plays drums. Tj plays bass and let’s us sleep at his house. And his mom cooks us breakfast.
How’d you guys decide on the name “I’ll Be An Empire?” Do you think it has anything to do with your sound and the feeling you provide for the listener?
Alex came up with the name and yes, we think it really highlights the message we provide through our lyrics.
Listening to some of your older, pre-production stuff and your newest single off of Aquarius, it’s clear that not only have you progressed individually as musicians, but together as a whole. What brought that about? What do you think is bigger and better about your new material as it’s compared to your older tracks?
For starters, we changed our style a bit solely because we wanted to write something people hadn’t exactly heard before. We’re all big into hardcore and progressive metal, as well as other non-metal genres, so we decided to try and incorporate all of those styles into one sound. We derive a lot of our patterns and such from the way Meshuggah writes their music, except we write in happier keys instead of scarier, dissonant sounding music. With the new writing style, we started getting better at polymeters and polyrhythms as well as syncopated pattern. We kind of had the same style of music with our older tracks but our style has definitely changed for the better.
What are some of your biggest goals as musicians? What acts are your biggest influences?
Touring the world with the bands we love listening to, such as Volumes, Meshuggah, The Controtionist, Veil of Maya, Born of Osiris, Periphery, Misery Signals, After the Burial, The Ghost Inside, Stick to Your Guns, For the Fallen Dreams, Saints Never Surrender, Erra, 7 Angels 7 Plagues, Parkway Drive, TesseracT, Whitechapel, The Acacia Strain, The Faceless, The HAARP Machince, Rings of Saturn, Necrophagist, Thy Art is Murder, Suicide Silence, Between the Buried and Me and Slipknot.
Recently you’ve started working with Total-Deathcore, who are some pretty heavy hitters in the underground music industry. What’s that like? How’d that deal come about?
After we posted on their page, they approached our manager about working with us. They quickly drafted up a contract and sent it out way. Working with Total Deathcore has be phenomenal so far, and they’ve been extremely nice and very helpful with everything we do. People in the band have spoken directly to Nik Velleca and Mike Hall and we’ve found only positive things to say about their organization, their work ethic, their personalities and their love for music.
With the new partnership with Total-Deathcore, along with a new album coming out shortly, what are the rest of your plans for 2013 looking like? Any rad tours?
Hopefully, by the end of the year, we will have played some sick ass tours. There are a lot of good local acts that we would like to tour with. We will be working on a lot this year seeing as we already have another album written, ready to record.
Speaking of tours, what would be your dream line-up for any tour–existing or defunct bands/musicians alike?
Our dream line-up would be The Contortionist, Veil of Maya, Volumes and Between the Buried and Me.
Finally, when you guys aren’t writing awe-inspiringly progressive and devastating tunes, what is it you do for fun?
We play World of Warcraft, Planetside 2, Starcraft II, and Super Smash Brothers. We also do active things such as play Dagorhir, go to shows and eat a ridiculous amount of food. Shout out to Emperor NOMNOM, King Munchie and Cap’n Crunch.
Thanks so much for answering these questions, fellas! Much love, and I can’t wait for Aquarius.
Neither can we <3.