Interview with Tyler Foss, vocalist of Nebraska Bricks, with insight into the future of the band, their inspirations for writing this record, and their experiences as a touring group.
1) How does your new record “Live in Pain, Die in Vain” compare to your previous release, “Redemption”? What were your goals with releasing this record?
Musically, the new record has a lot more depth than Redemption. Writing a full length, as opposed to a demo or ep, you're given much more room to explore your sound and throw a few tracks in that aren't so similar to the rest. So with the full length, we really just wanted to hit everything within the styles we are comfortable with. There's a couple sing alongs, some really straight forward hardcore, and some of the most riffy and heavy stuff we've ever put out. We've always been a hybrid band and we gladly kept it that way but LIP DIV is definitely more cohesive than redemption.
As far as the lyrical content and the underlying theme of each release, I'd say redemption was actually an off shoot of "LIP, DIV" before it was even written. Redemption was all about surviving my past and finally facing a lot of demons that had been consuming me, looking them in the face, and refusing to allow them to deprive me of life anymore. The title itself was literal because I toured a bunch when I was younger and I threw away a lot of dreams and opportunities with my drug abuse and it was basically a proclamation that I'm fighting for everything back and I will make up for lost time. With the new record, it touches a bit on those same issues but a lot of the content is less inward and more outward. I've reconciled my demons and been afforded a new opportunity so I felt it very important to take on a strong social conscience, address political issues, and really engage the listener into the concept that we can all be an instrument of positive change. No matter what plight we find ourselves, we can still be Weebly - Website Creation Made Easyaccountable to ourselves and other humans, and refuse to give in to hate and fear. That's what perpetuates all the evil in the world and turns solid people into cut throat and ugly. I dunno, I was at a place not too long ago where I thought everything and everyone was shit and having faith in people was a suckers mentality and that thinking almost killed me. Literally. Today life can still be a struggle but I choose to believe in myself, my friends, and every local scene I encounter. For me, the good always outweighs the bad as long as I focus on where I'm going but don't forget where I've been. Ultimately, the new record is a timeline of the life I've already lived, the hells I've been to, the things I've learned from fighting through them, as well as the problems we face as a society and the hopes I have for the future of my life and generations to come.
2) What are you most looking forward to in this US tour? What have been some of the highlights so far?
Well we are already almost half way through this trip but anytime we tour I always look forward to meeting new people most. We love going back to the cities we made friends with on previous trips and feeling welcomed back and it's really most gratifying to go to a new place and connect with complete strangers who we end up being long term friends with down the road. Makes all the shitty sleep and driving so worth it. For the highlights, it's the people too. So many people have welcomed us into their homes and treated us like family. It really does help reinforce my faith in humanity when complete strangers open their doors to a bunch of foul mouthed goons and let them sleep on their floors and feed us without reservation. It's pretty damn cool to see people just helping out. Humbles me every time....
3) What is your favorite memory from a show or tour?
This is a tough one. There are so many. We are currently sharing our van with a band called Valleys from Oklahoma and our last run we were doubled up with Reveal Renew. All I can say is you don't really know anybody until you live in a van with them, particularly with 8 or 9 other people. Let's just say it's never a dull moment, mostly hilarious, but also the best training for tolerance of others I think you can experience. I mean, nothing beats a kid in a city you've never been to singing your songs like he wrote them out loud but the real meat and potatoes of tour occurs in the van. That's where most of my fondest memories take place. We really have become a family in this thing and to me, that's priceless.
4) What are some of your goals for the future of Nebraska Bricks?
We are just going to continue touring this year and push this record as hard as we can. We plan on Europe late 2014/early 2015 and after this run ending June 7th, we go back out for two weeks end of July/beginning of August with our homies and label mates Carrier out of GA, then another east coast run with Strength Approach from Italy in October. I've been talking to some prominent booking agencies to help keep us on the road full time, but in the meantime, I'm just going to continue my DIY game and keep us busy meeting new people who hopefully dig our stuff. We are also going to put out a new video when we get home from this trip to help push the release but aside from all that, I just hope we stay connected and enjoy doing our thing.
5) How has becoming part of a label influenced you as a band?
Being signed to Eulogy has been very influential to us as a group. It's made us all accountable because there is another entity invested in our future and we've agreed to hold up our end of the deal. We've always been about our career but signing a contract just makes it more official. At the end of the day, we have to put in the work to succeed no matter who we may be in a relationship with but eulogy was a good fit for us because I know John and trust him. He's been globally successful with four different bands in his time and you can't find that kind of tutelage just anywhere. Eulogy was my favorite label growing up and I only hope Nebraska Bricks can help to nurture that brand today. I know john has big plans and we are grateful to be included.
6) If you had one message to give to your fans, what would that be?
It's that we believe in them. No matter what they are going through, what they've already been through, we believe they have what it takes to overcome it and be a better person as a result of fighting through the struggle. We believe that they don't have to be defined by the wrongs done to them, but instead can respond to those wrongs with character and perseverance, and not let another human kill their faith, hope, and spirit. We love them all and they are the reason we choose to keep this thing going.
Be sure to purchase the new Nebraska Bricks record at our webstore and keep an eye out for the great things this dynamic group has in store.