Guest Interview by Jordan Mohler
Jordan Mohler was able to catch up with Veil of Maya in Atlanta on the Crush Em All Tour.
You guys just played your set; how do you like the Atlanta crowds?
Brandon: Atlanta has been awesome. I remember one of our first tours ever with Cattle Decapitation and a few other bands. I mean, it was a pretty bad tour overall. It was our first tour ever and I remember Atlanta being of the best shows. I remember the crowds here being receptive so I like it.
Was that your first tour with the band, Brandon? I remember reading that you joined the band in 2007; is that correct?
Brandon: Yeah, it was.
What were some of your music influences and how involved in music were you growing up?
Marc: My parents raised me on Rolling Stones, The Beatles, that sort of stuff. And then growing up, I got into stuff like Dream Theater, Slayer, and now it’s pretty like everything.
Brandon: My dad raised me on the same stuff; a lot The Beatles, Rush, Stone Temple Pilots. I branched kind from that; I take a lot musical influences from everywhere.
Marc: Yeah, no limits really to what we listen to.
Were you in a band before you joined Veil of Maya, Brandon?
Brandon: Yeah; I was in band called Iscariot from Indiana. Before that, I was in a band called Mirror, Mirror. We both played shows with Veil of Maya so we knew all the guys a decent amount of time before I joined.
In your opinion, what is the best run venues from a production and band point of view?
Marc: There’s a lot of good ones; House of Blues is one of them. I mean, I like this venue (The Masquerade) a lot.
Brandon: It’s hard to gauge; some are professionally ran (on time perfectly, etc) but sometimes that’s too much. It kinda gets stressful. When it’s a good mixture between laid back and they’re still professional; those are always the best ones.
Marc: We like it somewhat intimate; being able to communicate with the crowd etc.
I noticed here in between setting up is pretty quick; has it been that way the whole tour?
Marc: Hell yeah; we have pretty fast changeovers most of the time.
Brandon: We have an awesome crew and they work hard.
What’s a favorite band you enjoy touring with and funniest story you have with them?
Marc: I can’t pick one; we have too many good friends.
Brandon: Everyone’s different.
Marc: We get along with every band we’ve toured with so it’s kinda hard to pick just one. It’s impossible to pick a favorite. It’s always good to tour with someone you know. We done one of our first tours with After The Burial so we’ve known them for a good five or six years.
Brandon: Same with Born of Osiris. Obviously, those are friends we hang out with and stuff but as far as bands to tour with, we like all the bands we’ve toured with.
Aren’t you doing another tour with Born of Osiris after this tour?
Brandon: Yep. It’s gonna be with Born of Osiris, Carnifex, Structures, and Betraying the Martyrs. A few of the dates have been announced; I don’t know yet if it’s coming to Georgia.
Marc: One of our first tours after signing to Sumerian Records was Born of Osiris so I’m pretty excited to see how things have changed
Will there be any songs on the new record that reference popular culture? (ex Namaste/Lost and Dark Passenger/Dexter from [id])
Marc: Well, all the music is completed and we’ll have slight references here and there but you’ll just have to see.
Brandon: Lyrics and such are still getting worked on. Influences are still coming in.
Marc: It’ll be a surprise.
Speaking of which; what influences your lyrics and what is the best state of mind to write lyrics in?
Brandon: I like to be by myself hanging out when I write lyrics. I write about tons of different things like personal stuff if I wouldn’t want the world to know about but I can still convey through the lyrics, you know? Whatever it means to someone, it means that to them. I don’t wanna give it a specific meaning because it changes what someone else thought it meant to them. I mean, Namaste is obviously about Lost and some other ones are about personal things.
Marc: Most of them are pretty open to interpretation.
Can you give any insight on how far along you are in the process, a release date or title of the new album?
Marc: Everything’s recorded; it’s got ten tracks with some bonus stuff here and there.
Brandon: It’s all on me now. I got a good amount of lyrics done. It’s more about getting in the studio once this tour is over with.
Any ideas for guest vocalists?
Brandon: It’s still up in the air. It’s always awesome to have guest vocalists. Working out logistics and schedules is the biggest thing though; whether they’re on tour or whatever. There’s a bunch of different things to factor into it. We definitely wanna try to get some on there.
Are you guys gonna work with Michael Keene [guitarist of The Faceless] again?
Marc: Well, we had Misha Mansoor from Periphery work on all the music but we’d like to work with Keene.
Brandon: He’s a busy guy with The Faceless right now; if we could somehow work around that, we’re gonna try do the lyrics and vocals and things. Hopefully, that’ll happen, if not, we’ll see I guess where the road takes us.
Marc: Yeah, he helped us a lot on our previous albums.
Last question; pick two songs; one from your catalog that you want new fans to check out after reading this interview. And one song from any band/genre.
Marc: Well, tonight we played a really old song called “All Things Set Aside”, which is still one of my favorite songs to play; definitely worth checking out. And as far as other bands/songs, I’m really into a band called “Reign of Kindo”. They’re pretty cool
Brandon: We’re kinda outta the loop from working on the new record. I haven’t listened to too much music lately, sadly.
Well, thanks for the interview.
Brandon: Thank you, man.