Interview By: Evan M.
At the end of 2008, LoveHateHero felt like it was time to step outside the boundaries they had created for themselves with their previous efforts. After building a solid fan base with their first two albums, “Just Breathe” and “White Lies,” which they had supported by touring nationally with such acts as Chiodos, Funeral for a Friend, and Scary Kids Scaring Kids, the band, despite all its hard work, felt like it had not quite hit its stride. Even after “White Lies” sold over 20,000 copies in the U.S. and drew the attention of magazines like “Alternative Press” and “Outburn,” something wasn’t quite right and they knew it.
While writing songs for their newest release America Underwater, the band retooled their sound. The result was a record that focuses more on their well-developed vocal melodies and cleanly polished hooks. Nearly reinventing itself as a whole, the group dropped a lot of the edginess from its songs, using it sparingly instead of as a crutch to rest on. For this release, “maturing as songwriters” wasn’t just a cliché.
“Everyone’s better at what they’re doing so we were able to get more creative,” singer Pierrick Berub explains. “The album still holds true to the band’s sound but adds so much more depth, while at the same time being a more care free album.
“I think we concentrated more on songwriting and the material, what the songs are about,” Pierrick continues. “We wanted everything to be a complete song instead of just parts that shredded or were heavy. We didn’t want each song to be random riffs, we wrote complete songs that are just good songs. We simplified it but opened it up with vocal harmonies and music melodies in a way that we could have more fun.”
Backed by a phenomenal team including platinum selling pop/rock producers Daniel James and Leah Haywood at Dreamlab Productions, Grammy nominated mixing genius Brian Paturalski (Aerosmith, Silverchair), and mastering guru Ted Jensen (Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana, Tokio Hotel, etc.), this four piece from the City of Angels is guaranteed to inspire those fans who have loved them before and win over those who never gave them a chance.
“Our producers work with a lot of pop acts, but they’ve always had a love for rock & roll,” Pierrick states. “It was a great learning experience to record with them. They are excellent songwriters and are really knowledgeable about song structure and it helped us a lot.”
When LoveHateHero was finished recording, the band exited Dreamlab Productions with ten anthemic, pop-laced rock songs, powered by Pierrick’s signature vocals and Thrasher’s relentless guitar attack. With Scot Gee (drums) and Paris Bosserman (bass) solidifying the rhythm section, the band steamrolls forward with more passion and fervor than ever before.
LoveHateHero now looks to blast headfirst to the next level with the release of America Underwater immediately followed by endless touring to support the album while spreading their sound to new listeners.
EM: First question: your bio says you “dropped the edginess from your songs, using it sparingly rather than as a crutch to rest on.” Did you feel that being “edgy” in your lyrics and style was a “crutch,” or did you think you’d be more successful with your new style?
Pierrick: Neither, we meant that instead of just throwing some screams, guitar solo or breakdown when were blanking on songwriting. Instead, we thought everything out and made sure we had complete songs written.
Paris: I think it’s more like we wanted to write songs that were timeless and more from the heart…. before we wrote with the mindset of what’s “cool.” And what do kids want to hear and not just what do WE love, and how can we do it in a way that can touch more people and get our message out. We all come from different backgrounds and listen to different types of bands and music and that’s what gives us our own unique style as a band. So now that we’ve been writing together for a while we know what we want and feed off each other to make our amazing sound. Enjoy it because we do! Haha.
Scott: When Pierrick stated that comment, I feel that we were more referring to the musical content, rather than lyrically. Lyrically, there’s still the unique style that Pierrick has been known for. What I can relate to in his statement is more of the fact that we wrote the songs on this album more to get stuck in people’s heads rather than explode them with our technical, over-the-top playing.
EM: I know, rough question for the first. My apologies for it. Can you share one of your most interesting incidents from touring?
Paris: One of my most “out of a movie” incidents was when I was in Brazil on tour, and we decided to go to this Dirty Dancing Samba bar that the promoter knew about. So I was standing at a table drinking some fine Brazilian drink, watching the house band play this amazing samba music, and this gorgeous Brazilian girl in a white dress walks up to me and asked me to dance…
I said, “I’ve never danced like you girls do, but I guess ill try it!” She had no idea what I was saying, but she could tell I was stolked to learn (Laughs). She proceeded to teach me how to dance the Samba. After about 20 minutes, I got the hang of it and we were actually working the dance floor, laughing and spinning and dancing our hearts out. She then gave me a kiss on the cheek and vanished from my life forever (Laughs). It was straight out of a movie
Pierrick: Paris, you left out the part where she said “You no dance good”, then walked away, (Laughs).
Paris: Pierrick, you’re just jealous, so shut up! (Laughs)
Pierrick: Of what?? Your sweet dance moves, calm down, Napoleon Dynamite.
Thrasher: One large incident actually occurred in a series of incidents starting with our bus breaking down in Omaha, Nebraska. Frustrated with the delay of being on tour and being stuck for a week, our tech/merch guy and I ended up raising some hell at the hotel we were staying at.
First, we snuck into an indoor water park and got chased out. Then we got into a brawl with a bunch of frat kids and broke an $800 window. We came back to the room and 5 minutes later get a knock on the door by a bunch of cops. Goodbye warm place to sleep. Hello steel bench.
Scott: An incident that sticks out in my mind, is one night while we were on tour in Canada. We tour in a big airport shuttle type-of-bus. I was waiting outside the club we just played at in the driver’s seat of the bus after we had just packed up for the night. 2AM rolls around, and all the clubs and bars on the street close, and all the people come stumbling out of the buildings. The city we were in apparently has public transportation that looks like our bus because within seconds people started to pile in our bus expecting their ride home!
EM: Now. . . who was/is the most important person in each of your lives? Who do you live for, who has inspired you?
Pierrick: I’m inspired by my family and my friends, the most important person is my girlfriend Kira who has stood by me for 9 years and supports everything I do.
Paris: I’ve had a lot of influences and people supporting me that I couldn’t have done it without; my parents obviously give me a lot of encouragement and love. I live to make people smile and laugh and I’m grateful to be doing what I do.
Thrasher: I live for kickin’ ass and eating bubble gum, and we’re fresh out of bubble gum.
Scott: I live to impress the editor of Drum Magazine, so I get my cover story!
EM: What achievement are you most proud of, as a band? You have so many, give us some!
Pierrick: Probably releasing this new record. I’ve never been 100% happy with our past releases and this one is up there at about 95%.
Paris: I’m just stoked we get to play music everyday, tour with awesome bands, and play to thousands of fans. Also, every one of our records is an achievement that I will have forever!
Scott: Playing in other countries where people don’t speak your language, yet they’re still singing your songs at the top of their lungs.
EM: Have you ever had anything stolen on tour? And what happened? Sometimes these stories can be quite an adventure . . .
Paris: My iPhone got stolen at one of our shows… Basically, I left it backstage, and when I was done playing it was gone… nothing too adventurous except I found out where he lived, and let’s just say he will never play piano again! (laughs)
Scott: People know better not to ever touch my gear.
EM: What are your hopes and dreams for the future of the band?
Pierrick: To continue to be able to tour and make enough money to live and see the rest of the world one stage at a time
Paris: I want to play to 100,000 people one day! I think it’ll be one of the coolest things in the world! The energy would be overwhelming and surreal.. Also we just filmed our video for “America Underwater” on a houseboat, and I think I want to buy one, and live on it when I’m retired. (Laughs)
Thrasher: To be a successful, timeless rock band!
Scott: Gee- I dream of our band’s name coming out of peoples mouths for centuries to come and for our band name to be listed as an influence to other great future bands.
EM: What are your favorite things to eat?
Pierrick: Sushi and Greek food
Paris: Egg whites, hot sauce, sushi, bubble gum, Jack-In-The-Box tacos , In N’ Out, and salad… Oh I’m going crazy just thinking about food! (Laughs)
Scott: The perfect piece of bread, soft , golden brown and fresh out of the oven. Oh, and brownies… unfrosted, and without nuts… for any fans that want to bring some out to me (Smiles)
EM: Where do each of you think you’ll be in 10 years?
Pierrick: I can’t see that far into my future!
Paris: Rocking to thousands of fans whilst eating a cheeseburger on a houseboat! (Laughs)
Thrasher: Rockin’ on stage and playing music in front of a lot of people.
Scott: Rockin’ out harder than Thrasher, and hangin’ on my yacht or mansion that my drum skills have earned me.
EM: What did you do for a living before you went into music?
Pierrick: Construction, sales, debt negotiator, gift basket-maker.
Paris: I used to sell vegetable choppers and blo pens at the mall (Laughs). Construction jobs, acting jobs.. pretty random stuff… oh the glory days.. I think I like throwing down the bass funk in LHH better though, (Laughs).
Thrasher: I grew up playing in bars with my bro in a blues cover band. My only two other jobs when I was in high school were 2 months at a nun’s retirement center and a pizza shop.
Scott: OK ready? Big 5, Liquorama, Alta Loma Music, a meat Cutter, a waiter, an air conditioning installer, a fork lift driver, a plasterer. Then I went to college for drumming, and became a studio drummer, and a music teacher at elementary schools.
EM: The paranormal! Have any of you ever had any experiences with it? Tell us…
Pierrick: Have you heard about the reptilians?
Paris: I see dead people, hehe.
Scott: Driving on the 5 while on tour at 3 AM, a UFO hovered in front of me, darted left, then darted right, then sped out of sight. I was yelling at everyone to get up, but they missed it… and don’t believe me.
EM: What do you want to tell your fans, most of all?
Pierrick: Thank you so much for your continued support, we love you guys, can’t wait to see you.
Paris: Thank you so much for being there for us and coming to the shows and giving us a reason to do what we do! Its all for you and we love you! Yeah YOU! P.S., never give up, and follow your dreams… and if you don’t want to be in a band or play music, but you love it, then there’s always managing bands or booking shows or being a record label executive or something, (Laughs). The point is, if you love music and want to be part of it, there’s always a way… (Smiles)
Thrasher: We love you all! And thank you for the amazing support, artwork and gifts!
Scott: We chose to follow our dreams, and we’re happy and complete. If you don’t go after what you love with all your heart, you’ll never live up to the potential God gave you and you will regret it each day you sit at your desk job wondering what if.