MEB staffer Ridge Briel recently caught up with Every Time I Die guitarist Andy Williams at the Vans Warped Tour. They discuss a new DVD currently in the works, Ex Lives making the Billboard Top 20, alcohol (and soda) preferences, and much more.
MEB: Being one of, if not the main, leading band in the southern hardcore genre, how does it feel to have your latest album Ex Lives hit the U.S. Top 20?
Andy Williams: It’s cool man. I don’t want to sound pompous and arrogant, but we’ve been a band for 14 years. We’ve done so much in that time, so when it happened we were like “Oh, that’s cool.” Our manager printed up these things that have the Top 20 billboard with the CD cover and he made it look really prestigious, so it was really cool to give to my dad. In actuality, it doesn’t matter. That doesn’t really matter.
How was it recording with a legend like Joe Barresi?
It was amazing. I honestly learned more from that dude than anyone else, music-wise. He just has a really good knack for gear and he’s been doing it for so long. He’s worked with everyone, so he’s got great stories. He’s not boring to work with.
What is the song “Typical Miracle” about?
Well, you’re asking the wrong guy when it comes to the lyrics, but I will tell you my story because I wrote the music. It was meant to be a black metal song, like super-fast blast beats and in the end was going to slow to a doom metal tempo. So when Jordan [Buckley, guitarist] came in, I told him to just blast through it, and he did it, but he said “I don’t hear it like that, I hear it like this,” so he went and wrote the weird guitar line. It was supposed to be really fast and ended up really slow.
So there’s word that there is going to be a new DVD from the band. Will this be like the hit DVD Shit Happens or more of a live set?
It’s going to be like Shit Happens. Live and us being assholes. It turned out really well; it’s one of the things we’re most proud of. The number three DVD by Pantera was a big influence to us while making this, and it kind of came off like that. I’m proud that it came out as a great DVD, and also that fans put Shit Happens among the realm of best DVDs of a band to ever come out. The number three DVD by Pantera is just awesome – they break shit, fuck shit up, and play awesome fucking music. It’s my personal favorite thing they ever did.
How did the South American tour go? How was the overall fan reception there?
Amazing. It was beyond awesome to play there. We toured with New Found Glory and Four Year Strong, so it wasn’t the kind of fans who we would associate with. The only thing I felt we were close on is that NFG has been a band for 15 years and we have been a band for 14. Musically though, [we’re] obviously really different from both of those bands. It’s one of the coolest things to go somewhere you’re not expected to go and people receive you and thank you for coming there.
So I heard the last show on the tour was recorded. Is that going to be on the upcoming DVD?
There will be pieces of us being in South America on the DVD, but not a whole, single performance. The DVD will also go beyond just the South American tour as well. Doug [Spangenberg, filmmaker] has been filming us for three years or something like that, so it will be like Shit Happens II. We were going to have this thing like a box set and call it a box full of shit and have a bunch of different shit titles, but we don’t have enough material for it.
So what will the next DVD be called?
We’re not really too sure. At the end of the day it will probably be called Shit Happens II. I know we talked it being called A Bucket Of Shit or something like that.
What are the main drinks of choice for you since the band partakes in alcohol?
I’ve been straightedge for 21 years, so my drink will have to be Dr. Pepper. I actually have a Dr. Pepper tattoo right here on my arm. I drink any soda though, I’m a 14-year-old kid trapped in a 35-year-old man’s body. I eat candy all the time, I drink soda, I watch cartoons. I really like that show Adventure Time. I think Keith [Buckley, vocalist] likes rum and coke or diet coke, Jordan will drink anything that has alcohol in it, and Legs [Ryan Leger, drummer] is a beer guy. Steve [Micciche, bassist] is another guy who won’t drink hard shots because he’s afraid he will throw up, so he drinks really girly stuff, like mixed drinks and such. Umbrellas and everything.
Any last words for your hardcore fan base and the people who came to Warped for you guys?
Just come and see us. Check us out, you will like it. You’re going to get a real honest show. I can’t say that for all the other bands, but Every Time I Die will play an honest show.