Canadian metalers, Rusted Dawn have recently released their debut CD, The Black Tides Of War. Guitarist and vocalist Jeremy Goddard took some time out of the band’s busy touring schedule to speak with me about their new release, a straight ahead metal disc that is an all out assault on the senses from the very beginning. These tunes are brash, aggressive and in your face and will have listeners snapping their necks in no time at all. Here is how our conversation went.
You guys are right in the middle of a Canadian tour. How has it been going? Have the fans been receptive?
Jeremy: The tour has been going great. Since it’s our first time going from coast to coast (all our tours prior have only covered everything Ontario-eastward) I must say the west has shown us an amazing time and all the shows have been off the charts for the most part.
Now that your brand new CD, Black Tides Of War is complete how do you feel about it? Are you satisfied with the outcome?
Jeremy: As a first record, I am definitely satisfied, especially with all the good feedback we have been getting regarding it. But, I am definitely ready to start writing new material. The record was recorded over a year ago, and our sound has definitely continued its evolution even before the record was released.
What was the writing process like for this CD? Did you guys all write together? How long did it take?
Jeremy: Like a lot of club and gigging bands on bar circuits, a first record is usually whatever has been written up to that point. Rusted Dawn has gone through many lineup changes over the years. This band started when I was only 16 as an excuse to drink and play thrash, so there are a couple older tracks I did myself from way back in the day. However, other than that, the more recent material is usually Justin and I sitting down and bouncing riffs off each other, charting them out, and then bringing them to Chad. At that point, we will make bass lines that work with the riffs. We just had another drummer change-up so we’ve just started writing new material with Tom recently.
The name of the band Rusted Dawn 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?
Jeremy: This is the first time I have actually been asked this question, kudos! There are many theories as to where the name came from (a lot of them are equally retarded). Some have said that it means a hangover; some have said that it is due to half the band being gingers… the list continues. But really, it is just a name I came up when we started in high school. I was just a youngen’ who hated how the world was ran, and when Dubyah was re-elected in ’04 I figured we were headed for WW III, and Rusted Dawn simply means shitty future.
What can fans expect when they pick up a copy of Black Tides Of War?
Jeremy: Some blistering fast heavy tunes. We don’t try to limit ourselves when it comes to our tunes so you’ll hear a lot of different influences.
Are there any tracks on this disc that are personal favorites or that have good stories behind them?
Jeremy: None of our songs on this record really have personal stories behind them. I would have to say some favorites are, “By The Hammer Of Thor,” which is just calling out US foreign policy as being as primitive and ignorant as any ancient attitudes. “I Am Becoming Death” is another; the title is a reference to the film ‘Full Metal Jacket’ and the character Animal Mother, who is essentially the stereotypical big, dumb, American killing machine. It basically takes the piss out of the idea that any soldier is superior to any terrorist or freedom fighter in any righteous attitude. There’s no cause on this earth worth killing and dying for, and they’re all the same, just unfortunate people mislead by politicians or religious leaders who tell them to kill.
What is the toughest lesson you ever learned in the studio and on the stage?
Jeremy: In the studio – rush nothing and do pre-production. On stage – don’t even think about what the crowd is doing. If they want to stand there with arms crossed like douche bags, let them. Don’t ever give in to them or call them on standing still, they’ll regret it anyways once you kicked their ass.
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?
Jeremy: I cannot speak for everyone in the band, but Justin (lead guitar) and I try to stay in decent shape. Obviously, I am like anyone else when it comes to his or her routine and slack occasionally, but I definitely get my jog on a lot when I am at home. Other than that, I just try not to get blind wasted every single night I guess. I am usually too busy to do that anyways, and my mornings are not as haggard as some people’s are. When it comes to the trademark banger’s neck, after you do it a couple nights in a row you don’t even notice 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?
Jeremy: Canada does not hold to many surprises really, I was pretty aware of what I would see. The one thing I have noticed is how much homelessness seems to increase the further you head west. The prairies are said to be where the money is right now, but all I see are a bunch of rednecks festering in their own ignorance as they become even more like our neighbours to the south, while the poor stay poor and their conditions worsen.
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?
Jeremy: I would have to say the worst thing that has even happened to us would be on our first tour, which we did with our friends in We, The Undersigned. A wheel flew off our van on the 401 before Kingston; we definitely could have all been killed and taken some other motorists out with us.
Will there be other tours this year?
Jeremy: Yes, we plan to do another cross-Canada trek to continue supporting this record in the fall, probably in October.
Any closing words?
Jeremy: Get your ass to one of our shows. Closet ‘bangers contribute jack! Take it upon yourself to get into bands on the underground circuit because they’re the ones who deserve your support.