While the name Evergreen Terrace might suddenly cause your mind to jump to thoughts of The Simpsons, it’s also the name of a current alternative rock band. This five piece band has been together now since about 1999, originating from the streets of Jacksonville, Florida. In the last eight years, Evergreen Terrace has been a remarkably productive band, touring like crazy and releasing extremely frequent studio records. The group’s latest studio album is called Wolfbiker, and just released this past summer. Currently the band is on a very extensive tour with dates in Canada and the U.S. before venturing to Europe before the end of the year. Recently we spoke to Evergreen Terrace’s guitarist Josh James and asked him a few questions about what’s going on with the band.
How’s the tour with Strung Out and I Am Ghost going and how did you get on this tour in the first place?
Josh: This tour has been pretty crazy. It started off a little shaky but quickly picked up. The shows were great and the party was rolling. That all changed about 2 weeks into the tour (well the shows have still been great). After the VA Beach show one of the guitar techs was arrested for being drunk and slashing a bicycle tire, the police would not set bail, so he has been in jail for the last week. It has been super sketchy. The next day Metal Bob’s, Strung Out’s drum tech, ear started bleeding so he was rushed to the emergency room. You would think that things couldn’t get any worse, but then around 9 am the next morning Strung Out’s van, trailer, equipment… everything, was stolen. They actually saw the van driving off. So we rolled 14 deep in our van for a few days until they bought a handicapped van in Boston, which later the front end fell off. We just crossed into Canada yesterday morning and were charged $1500 to cross the border due to incorrect past criminal history. Fortunately the show last night in Three Rivers was fucking awesome and we are stoked to now be in Canada.
Evergreen Terrace has been together now since about 1999. How did you five guys all meet and decide to form your band?
Josh: We all knew each other from being in different local punk bands. It’s funny; now that I think of it, the idea of Evergreen Terrace came about at a Strung Out, Straight Faced show. Ha!
Besides being your band name, Evergreen Terrace is also a popular term for being the street that The Simpsons live on in the popular television show. Is this where you got your band name from or is there a different story behind the name?
Josh: Yes, that is where the name is from, not much else to say besides that….
Let’s talk a bit about your brand new album Wolfbiker which came out at the end of July. First of all, where does the album title come from and now that it’s been out a few months, how are you feeling about the record?
Josh: We are feeling great about the record. The fans seem to love it but more importantly we love it. That is always our first priority; to write music that we enjoy playing and listening to. This record is the definition of Evergreen Terrace and our best record to date. A Wolfbiker is someone who lives their life for themselves, someone who uses free thinking and free will to the fullest. It’s also a really funny mental image.
Wolfbiker is a hard, fast in your face record with ten tracks and clocking in around thirty-five minutes. When you set out to write the record, is this the type of fast pace you were going for or did it just end up that way in the end?
Josh: It just ended up that way but at the same time we always want to make high energy music, and Wolfbiker is definitely that. If we are blending punk, hardcore, metal, and rock and the record isn’t hard and fast then I think you are doing something wrong, haha.
The new record Wolfbiker is the follow up to 2005’s Sincerity Is An Easy Disguise In This Business. How do you feel Wolfbiker compares to your previous album? What did you do differently this time around?
Josh: I think Wolfbiker is a huge step up from Sincerity. There is more emotion behind the songs on Wolfbiker and it has more of a wild feeling. This is our first time writing a record with Kyle, our drummer since 2005, and I think you can tell that he brought a lot to the table.
How long did it take to write this album? How many songs did you write and record in total?
Josh: We wrote about 6 songs in spring of 2006 but then scratched them because they sucked. The songs you hear on Wolfbiker were written in about 3 months in late 2007. We recorded 12 songs total, 2 of which were given to our old record label to fulfill our contract with them.
Who took care of production duties on Wolfbiker and why did you decide to go with them?
Josh: We self produced the record due to finances.
Earlier this year Evergreen Terrace signed with the very popular heavy metal label Metal Blade Records. Why did you decide to sign on with Metal Blade to be your new record company?
Josh: We decided to leave Eulogy recordings due to fact that the band and label did not see eye to eye anymore. After speaking with a few different labels, we met up with Tim from As I Lay Dying, who now works for Metal Blade and runs his own label, High Impact. We have known Tim for years and trust him so it seemed like the right move. After meeting with Metal Blade we had a good feeling and went with it. So far so good.
As a band, you guys seem to be going stronger than ever. What does the band have planned for the New Year?
Josh: We should be hitting the road with As I Lay Dying in Jan/Feb for a US/Canadian run. Then hitting up Australia, Europe, Japan, and more North American tours. Touring seems to be what we do best so we aren’t going to stop, ha!