The guys in Suicide Silence have been quite busy these days. Their brand new CD, No Time To Bleed, has just been released and they are fresh off of the Canadian Carnage Tour with Slayer and Megadeth. Guitarist Mark Heylmun took advantage of some down time to answer a few questions about the band and their new CD, No Time To Bleed.
You guys just were part of the Canadian Carnage tour alongside Slayer and Megadeth. How did that come about? What was that experience like?
Mark: Oh man, we confirmed that tour in November of last year and we were all just waiting for it. It was kind of surreal because I have been a huge Slayer fan forever and I almost looked at Tom, Kerry, Jeff, and Dave as superheroes and when you see them in the flesh just hanging out you realize they are human. It was really cool for sure; it was like coming full circle from the spastic guy screaming Slayer at the top of my lungs to the guy on stage nervous because everyone wants Slayer.
Were the fans receptive to your music?
Mark: I wish we could be on tour with Slayer all the time. They have the most intense fans out there and that is no secret. We were nervous but excited at the same time but once we got out there we just did our thing and people warmed up to it quick. There wasn’t one time where we felt out of our element, loud crowds and circle pits galore.
The name of the band Suicide Silence is interesting to say the least and sounds as if there is a story behind it. Where did the name come from and what is the story?
Mark: Sounds like you are hoping for a story. As far as I know, it is just two words that flow together and sound cool. I wasn’t in the band when it was started so I couldn’t tell you but I am pretty sure it is just a name that stuck.
Now that your new CD, No Time To Bleed, is complete how do you feel about it? Are you satisfied with the outcome?
Mark: I love it. I could not be more satisfied with it. We spent a lot of time on it and grew a lot since the last record. We all are completely stoked on the record and the way it came out. It honestly makes us excited to tour our asses off again and write another record and see how much further we can take our talents and chemistry.
What can fans expect when they pick up a copy of No Time To Bleed?
Mark: If you are like me, it’s gonna make you want to throw your little sister out the window or punch your kid in the mullet. Expect aggression in an organic setting. And last but not least expect groove. Just listen to it.
When you are on the road for a while I am sure you see and experience many different things you might not even have known existed. Are there any stories that stand out in your mind as being exceptionally strange or odd?
Mark: Well I think the time I saw Dan Donegan setting up a jolly jump backstage was a real shocker. I had to let it set in for a second and then I just laughed because when the fuck are you gonna see that? I have nothing against the guy, he’s a real laid back dude but no one expects to walk by a rock star setting up a fucking jolly jump.
When you are out on the road anything can happen and often does. Can you think of any disastrous events that happened while out on tour? How did you solve the problem?
Mark: I ran out of weed in Texas once, and if you know (the) Texas weed situation you know it is all shwaggy work bud. I basically combed the audience for stoney looking fellows and found somebody with some half way decent nugs.
All of that passion that you play with must be tough on you physically. How do you prepare for the physical demands of a tour?
Mark: I basically just warm up for about an hour or two before we play. I stretch a little, then I play guitar for a little, and then I stretch out while I play guitar. Usually while I am stretching and what not I am drinking some brew as well, I like a couple beers to loosen me up and give me the carbs I need to keep my energy up. Ok I really just like having a little buzz before I play. Simple as that nothing special, stretching and a couple of beers.
What is the toughest lesson you ever learned in the studio and on the stage?
Mark: I don’t know? I think the lesson that I have learned, and it goes for both studio and on stage, and that is if you are not having fun then give it the fuck up. If playing a show in front of five people is not fun to you stop doing it. If tracking your guitar tracks pisses you off and makes you wanna never play again. Then do not ever play again. Passion is a word that gets thrown around a lot and I think passion is what got me to where I am today.
What has been the most memorable moment of your career so far?
Mark: I will probably never forget touring with Sepultura in 2006 sharing a bus with our boys Sworn Enemy. We did not know what to expect living with a bunch of crazy New Yorkers. It ended up being one of the most stand out times of my life. So many memories gained while brain cells were getting mutilated.
What is next for Suicide Silence?
Mark: Up next for us is more touring around the world, trying to get to places we haven’t been. We are just going to keep going and keep working hard on this roller coaster of a career.