An interview with hinder at manchester academy - september 2015
Hinder are a band that I have followed since their debut release Extreme Behaviour. When their current UK tour rolled into Manchester to promote their new album“When The Smoke Clears" with new singer Marshal I was fortunate to have the opportunity to chat to both Marshal and drummer, Cody, ahead of their first show on the tour.
SCR: Does Hinder still get excited ahead of the first gig of a tour?
Cody: Ahh no, this one we are really excited, because we haven’t been here in so long. We have been trying to get back for so long. It is such a great feeling to finally make it back.
SCR: I was actually quite surprised at the size of the venues on this tour. Do you not feel that because Hinder have been around for quite some time that you should perhaps be playing in arenas?
Cody: Well that would be nice. I just feel that unfortunately we haven’t had label support over here in so long, so just the fact that we are able to come and sell tickets is a big accomplishment.
SCR: Marshal, “When the Smoke Clears “is your first album with the band, do you feel that you have had to adapt or maybe change your vocal style to fit in with what already existed as the Hinder sound?
Marshal: Yeah, I mean I definitely had to work to sound more like a dude I guess... (Everyone laughs).No I’m just kidding. I just had to work to get some vocal strength especially since the Hinder set is so challenging to sing.The range is really broad, and there is a lot of high stuff. The set is also pretty long, we usually do about an hour and a half. Maybe stamina you know just to make it through the shows day after day is the main thing.”
SCR: You have also received a co-producer credit on the new album - A bit unusual for a new guy?
Cody: Well actually, he has actually been co-producer on the last three albums. He started working with us on stuff for the 'All American Nightmare' album.
SCR: From a song-writing perspective was it difficult to integrate somebody new?
Cody: Ahh... no, because like I said, we have been writing with Marshal for so long. Marshal, and I are actually writing in the studio every day together even when we are not doing Hinder stuff so we have a great writing chemistry together. It’s super easy.
SCR: The new album appears to illustrate a lot of different aspects, a little bit of diversity and new elements into the Hinder sound. Is it important for you to retain that freshness and for the band to be continually evolving..?, Or do you actually worry about what your fans think? Many I’m sure are reluctant to embrace change?
Cody: Yeah, I think that it is important to kind of grow and evolve and keep things current and modern. I do think that it is important to keep things cohesive and keep that Hinder 'sound' intact. I think that we were very conscious and made sure to put a lot of those guitar rock elements on the album so...
SCR: So, Cody, when did you first hear about Marshal as a singer?
Cody: I guess that would have been... what 2009? (Marshal- ”Yeah, maybe”) because we met when he was in a band called Faction and they were signed to Roadrunner Records. He was the guitar player in that band and he toured with us back in 2009.
SCR: Marshall, same question to you. When did you first hear of Hinder? Even before you were asked to join the band?
Marshal: I think that the first time that I met Hinder, I think that if I remember correctly was in 2004/5 in Texas. We did a string of Texas dates with these guys, before either one of us had record deals. Well I think that you guys had (looks at Cody) Cody says “yeah that was way before 2009.
Marshal: We were just two bands touring and so I kind of met 'em then. Later on we ended up doing a tour together 'Girls gone wild tour' in 2006 and that was our first tour. We did it with these guys and we got to know them really well and did a bunch of crazy partying, drinking and all that stuff. We kind of bonded on that tour.
SCR: On the new album Hinder employed a pledge scheme for its release. Is that something that is going to be used in the future for Hinder as a band? Do you also see that as the only way forward for all bands?
Cody: I don’t know, I mean it definitely is a great tool for some bands. We actually ended up cutting ours short, the label felt that it was kind of “Hindering “their... (everyone laughs) Yeah they said that or asked us politely to kind of end that campaign early. I think that it is great for some bands. For us it is not quite as necessary because we have our own studio, and we do everything 'in house' anyway. It is a good way for us to do fan experience things and hang out with people. Get to know new people, and that is always cool.
SCR: What about the Vip Experience packages? Is that a band idea or suggested by the record company? People generally are either pro or against that idea. The concept of actually having to pay to meet a band for example.
Cody: Well it is interesting. We always have fans asking for VIP experiences so we always want that to be available, at least. We usually do a little meet and greet, do photos, and play an acoustic song for them. That is always really cool.
SCR: Will you be doing that today here in Manchester?
Cody: Yeah, we haven’t done it yet.
SCR: I'm sure that both of you have done many interviews over the years but if you could interview somebody yourself who would you choose?
Cody: That’s a really tough question!
Marshal: There is that many choices I really wouldn’t want to screw this up. You mean like a musician???
SCR: A personal hero maybe. Not necessarily a musician.
Cody: I was actually going to say, that it would be very interesting to interview Barack Obama. I would like to kind of like to hear his take on … Hear how he deals with all the negative criticism that he gets. I think that would be very interesting to hear his point of view.
SCR: Marshall could you maybe also pick someone?
Marshal: Ahh you know probably Milla Jovovich (laughs). Yeah just to be in her presence for a few minutes would be pretty awesome… Just to stare at her awkwardly for a few moments…(everybody laughs) I mean that’s the first thing that came to mind.
SCR: Whats up next for Hinder, more touring I expect to promote the album all around the world?
Cody: Yeah we go back home, and we have a show a few days after we get back. We are actually in the studio working on an acoustic EP. I'm not sure exactly when that will be released. Hopefully we will have that finished in the next couple of weeks.
SCR: Will that be a mixture of new and old songs?
Cody: Yeah, I think it’s going to be a little mixture of both. In a word we have already done two songs from this new album for i.e. are doing a cover song, and we may throw in a couple of old ones. Maybe one brand new one.
SCR: Final few questions guys, what are the best and worse bits of being a musician? In the current climate where there is not the strength of support from record companies that there used to be.
Cody: Well, the bad obviously is the income has gone down significantly, so it's tough to make money and be successful in this business. Especially when you have been at a certain level, and you know what its like to be there. To have to adjust I don’t know to the entire music industry declining is kind of tough to swallow. The positive side is the fans that are still around to support. That always makes you feel good. To get to talk to people and listen to them tell us how our music affected them that’s always cool.
SCR: What about yourself Marshal. Pros and cons?
Marshal: The minuses definitely are the income, I don’t know what else really to say about it. It is kind of stressful and you lose a lot of sleep sometimes. The travel can be a little weary. That is really small potatoes compared to the great things about touring. Being out and getting to perform live and then just getting to record music and make new music. I love being in the studio also.
SCR: You have that dual role musician and producer?
Marshal: Yeah I love hearing a song, I love writing a song, then hearing it come to life as you record it. That's one of the best things about being a musician.
SCR: Cody, Marshal, Thanks for chatting to me! I can’t wait to see Hinder live for the first time. Have a great show.
Interviewer: Mark Dean
Location: Manchester Academy