Currents are a rather new band that apparently appear from out of nowhere with the debut album ‘The Place I Feel Safest’. So can you tell us something about the history of the band?
Currents started around 2011 with Jeff and an entirely different lineup. The band released an EP and played around Connecticut for a couple years. As members started to fall off, they were replaced by Ryan, Dee, and Chris who wrote ‘Life//Lost’ in 2015. After the previous vocalist stepped down, I (Brian) took over vocals and we released ‘Withered’, and that was the point where we started to look beyond the tri-state area and started to tour. Now that we've released our debut record ‘The Place I Feel Safest’ branching out and expanding our fan base is all we're focused on.
It’s like the band was not really getting forward until Brian Wille came on board as a new singer. The band made a few singles and were signed by Sharptone Records. Was this arrival such a boost for the band?
Jeff Brown: Brian's arrival to the band was a turning point. We started taking music more seriously and wanted to make a career out of it. We pushed ourselves to create music that was diverse and also something that we could be proud of.
Most metalcore bands these days use a lot of clean singing and emotional pop elements in their music to achieve some mainstream airplay. That definitely is not the way it goes with Currents. Did it take a long time until the band reached their unique style of aggressive, yet pretty varied metalcore?
I think the variety on the record comes from the fact that we all like different aspects of heavy music. We wanted to make something that encapsulated all of our different influences while still being appealing to a first time listener. Chris is the main instrumental composer for the band, and he has a knack for taking a lot of different elements and tastefully incorporating all of them, which is nice for mewhen it comes to writing vocals, as it keeps the process interesting and varied.
Which bands/artists did influence Currents the most? And what was so special about them?
For this record, we took a lot of influence from bands like Humanity's Last Breath, Vildhjarta and Meshuggah. Vocally, I took a lot of influence from Sam Carter (Architects) and Landon Tewers (The Plot in You). On the heavier side of things, I was also influenced by the vocals in bands like Nails, Ceremony and Pig Destroyer. I've always loved that frantic, emotional nature of vocal delivery, and I've always thought that kind of approach would be a cool pairing with the low-tuned, bouncy vibe of our music.
Are there any other bands out there you guys truly admire?
Blink, A Day To Remember, Slipknot, Linkin Park and Meshuggah all come to mind as bands we admire as a whole. Any band that can stay on top, continue to pump out awesome music and maintain relevancy in our fickle, turbulent scene is a band worth taking notes from.
There aren’t much lyrics that show such pain and agony like those of Currents. Is this the writing of one person or did the whole band had a say in the lyrics?
For the most part, I (Brian) handled all the lyrics for the record. This is my first time getting the chance to be part of a full length record; and so I had a lifetime worth of feelings and situations to draw from. I also tried to take influence from situations my band mates were going through during the time we were writing and recording. I wanted to make something we could all relate and emotionally connect to, in the hopes that it would resonate with other people in the same way. People are smart though, and they can tell when something isn't 100% genuine, so I tried to avoid pulling punches and tried to put everything into this album.
How difficult was it to write an album like this? I mean, with a playing time of fifty minutes, it’s a rather long one.
The length of the record is all thanks to Chris, it might have been longer if I was able to keep up with him! Instrumentally, we weren't short on material; it was really just a matter of picking the most cohesive and fully fleshed songs, including vocals. The real challenge of this album was narrowing things down; picking what songs would get the chance to make the album, and what songs would have to be put on the back burner. Vocally, it definitely became a challenge toward the end, as we were starting to write for last minute songs and also fine-tuning other ones, and I was honestly starting to run out of steam. Once we finally hit the studio though, I think we all got a second wind and managed to bang everything out without many hiccups.
When I was finished listening the album, it left me behind completely dissolved and confused. Is that just me or did you get that feedback also from other listeners? And what does this mean to you?
That's a new one! I suppose you don't really get a resolution at the end, as it concludes on a pretty somber note. Dissolved and confused is a good way to describe how I feel a lot of the time, so I guess it's cool to impart that feeling on a few listeners through the songs!
The bio on the bands Facebook page tells that there were about fifty songs written, but just thirteen made it to the album. What has happened with the rest? Are you still going to do something with those tunes?
A lot of those songs weren't complete and cohesive ideas, but parts of them were used on the record to replace weaker parts in the stronger songs. Some of them may never see the light of day, but we do plan to revisit a few of those tracks for the next release. Some of them were pretty cool, ambitious ideas on Chris' part, so it'd be sick to approach them again and make them into finished products.
Can you give us some explanation about the artwork of the album? You see two persons and one of them is sitting on his knees. The person behind him has a knife in his hands. So it really don’t seem a place where someone is feeling safe. It even reminded me of IS terrorists and their crude ways of executing prisoners...
That's another new one! I never thought of that, but that's an interesting take for sure. You're definitely right though, the cover was meant to be a play on the duality of trust, and to express that sometimes the place you feel safest isn't always the safest place to be. You can trust someone, but it doesn't change their actions or intentions, just your perspective of them. You can also feel secure in a position, whether it be a job, a relationship or the place you live, but it doesn't mean that situation is the best one for you to be in.
It’s like the best metalcore bands are all coming from the northern part of the States. Is this perhaps a geographical or cultural thing? Something in the water?
I actually have a theory about this! The northeast has always been known for its aggressive/hostile nature. My theory is that it manifests differently for everyone, and that when music becomes the outlet, it's usually metal. That's why we're blessed with so many bad ass heavy bands coming from our neck of the woods.
Right now you are doing and intensive tour with Miss May I in America. In a period of one month, the band is playing almost every day. Is this the life you were dreaming for? And do you still have the time to do some other things?
This tour is definitely ideal for where we want to be. We love playing every day and getting to see new faces in different parts of the country. Since this is our first time out, we're trying to focus more on learning the ropes; and so we haven't had too much time to deviate from just getting through each show. Once we have a couple more tours under our belt, we'll probably get more chances to explore and work on personal ventures.
Are there already plans to visit the old world? It would be great to see you here in Europe!
Europe is definitely our next target! Once the album's been out for a little longer, we'll have a better idea of when we can get there, but we'd definitely love to make the trip!
And to finish the interview, are there any last words of wisdom you want to share with our readers? The space below is yours....
Thanks for trying to get to know us a little better! Our new record ‘The Place I Feel Safest’ is out now! You can pick it up from Sharptone's online merch store or from our merch table on tour! It's also on iTunes, Spotify and select stores. We put our all into this record and we'd love for you all to check it out.