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Status: Freedom Fighter
Joined: Apr 2006
Re: 3 days grace fans
Is there any specific guitar that you feel more comfortable on? One that you would play live, for instance?
Yeah, I play a Paul Reed Smith live. I've got one at home and then one on the road that I use. And it's a killer guitar. Paul Reed Smith makes great guitars. I've actually got an endorsement with Schecter guitars as well, so I have a bunch of Schecters that are custom-made that sound great, too.
Talking about guitars, ine of the overriding features is the lack of solos. There are solo sections and musical sections, but no real kind of guitar heroics. Is that something specific to this band?
I definitely know what you mean. Well, "It's All Over" actually is just one of the songs that does have a solo in it. I don't know what it is. I think it's just, thanks to the music industry, it's just changing. You know, different bands, different styles coming out. And I think the solo is definitely being pushed away. But it's still great to hear a kick-ass solo in the middle of a really powerful song. So I do like solos. I mean, we've got nothing against them. But for some reason, they don't present themselves in our songwriting structure that much.
On a track like "Pain," is the sound expanded with a keyboard on the last verse?
Yeah, there's a Mellotron actually that we use, which is the same kind of thing that The Beatles used in "A Day in the Life" (presumably Adam was referring to "Strawberry Fields Forever"), which was really, really cool. So we just tried out different keyboard sounds on a couple different things, but it worked really well with "Pain." The Mellotron came out really well.
Did you play the Mellotron part?
Yeah. My mother is a piano player, so I kind of mess around on the piano. But I'm definitely not a professional by any means. I play everything by ear. So I play the bass and the drums and the guitar all sort of by ear. As well as the piano, I play everything by ear.
On "Animal I Have Become," the first single, how do you prepare for a vocal like that? Musically it seems like it's a challenging song for a singer.
Well, I think the main thing is we were lucky enough to work with a great producer, Howard Benson, on this record, in his studio. He's really set up his studio for singers to come through and feel comfortable and feel like they can just give everything they've got. And he really focuses on vocals, melodies, harmonies, all that stuff. I think me and Howard both got into a mindset that we wanted to come up with different vocal parts that we normally wouldn't. And like I said, the studio's just really, really comfortable for that sort of thing. I just sort of put my mindset into the lyrics of the song before I get in the vocal booth. And I sort of just read the lyrics over and over. I just sit in my own headspace for a little while and get into the mindset of the lyrics. And then I go into the booth and just do it.
Is that sort of a first take kind of a situation or is there cutting and pasting going on?
No, basically what's really cool about the way Howard works, I would sing the whole song from front to back. From front to back over and over and over and over, and we would basically get 10 to 12 to 15 takes of the song. And what would happen, he would basically pull what he thought were the best of the best. And we would actually sit together and pull the best vocal performances out, and between us, decide which ones we wanted to be the actual take. So I sang every song about, at least, 10 to 15 times.
"I do like solos. But for some reason, they don't present themselves in our songwriting structure that much."
Would you default to Howard's decision or would you know that, yes, this is the line, this is the verse, this is the performance?
Yeah, definitely. I think he's been doing it for so long that he has a good idea of what the best performance is. And I obviously have a good idea of what I think my best performance was and how I felt about it. So you know, I could be on the 7th take or finish the song and the 7th take is done, and I think it's the best performance that I've done. Maybe I'll run downstairs and I'll sit with Howard. We'll both say, "That was the best take." And you know, we'll do a few more and maybe come back to that take. So it's just between us. We just decide what works the best.
On "Never Too Late," is that you on the acoustic?
Yeah. Yeah, that's me on acoustic guitar. I mean, I used my Guild. I have a Guild True American that I love, my acoustic guitar, and I used that on the record. Yeah, there's a few different acoustic tracks on the record, from "Never Too Late" to, I think, we did some acoustic guitars on "Over and Over." There's a few acoustic parts that are just buried underneath different choruses just to fill it out. Like in the song "Let It Die," there's acoustic guitars in the chorus that just sit back really nicely and just keep the rhythm going.
On "Let It Die," is that a Leslie on the electric guitar? Is that the effect there?
No, we didn't actually use a Leslie on the record. Barry owns a Leslie, but we didn't use one.
Some people are like slinkys; they don't really have a purpose, but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down the stairs.