This April saw the release of “Sulphur English”, the new album by underground sensation, Inter Arma, and now the band agreed to answer a few questions for us. Enjoy!
– Hello! Thank you for accepting my invitation to answering a few questions. First off, please tell us your names and your respective roles in the band.
– Steven Russell: Vocals and shaker
Trey Dalton: Dungeon Master and yellow vitamin water
Mike Paparo: Juul
Andrew LaCour: Wraps and rocks
T.J. Childers: Alcoholism
– Can you tell us a bit about the history of Inter Arma? How did you decide you wanted to make music?
– Inter Arma was formed from the remains of another band. Steven joined up, then Mike, Trey came a little later. We didn’t necessarily chose each other, it just sort of happened that way. I think the only band where the members were chosen was Zappa’s band and he died.
– I always wondered how you came up with your band name. Could you give us a bit of insight?
– One of the old guitar players came up with it when we first started playing shows and just needed a name. We still don’t know which one and they still argue about it.
– Back in 2016, Paradise Gallows was released to high critical acclaim and one of the things that was almost unanimously praised was how you manage to combine different styles to create a unique sound. Is this something you aimed for since the beginning?
– No, when we write songs we never have any sort of stylistic goals. Different members bring in riffs and whatever is we roll with it. Our only criteria is whether or not it’s good and by this point all of us on our own know when a riff is flying and when it ain’t.
– What intrigued me a bit about your last record is its title, “Sulphur English”, but I couldn’t really figure out the meaning behind it. Please tell us how and why did you choose this title.
– It’s another way of saying stinking rhetoric. I think all you have to do is turn on American news for five minutes to understand what we’re talking about.
– I’m always very interested in the stories behind album covers. Care to share the one behind “Sulphur English”?
– It’s actually not that great of a story. We had an idea, the record label didn’t like it, we had another idea that we were trying to nail down. I found that picture somewhere online looking for more of a reference and then just emailed the woman who took the picture and asked if we could use it. She said yes.
– The first single off your new record was “Citadel”. Why did you choose it?
– Because it’s the shortest and dumbest song on the record.
– It might be too soon to ask, but where do you plan to head in the future, sound-wise?
– Definitely more short, dumb songs! Just kidding, I have absolutely no idea what the next record will sound like.
– The life of a musician is not an easy one. What are some of the worst experiences you had?
– Oh, man… you name it, we’ve done it. Showing up to a house we were supposed to play and it’s just some old lady’s house and no one’s there, getting paid with a broken microphone, having to sleep in the van in August in Texas, playing a show to no one then driving through the night to play another show to no one, having to post pone your set because Father John Misty is playing upstairs and he’s a douchebag and has threatened not to play his sad white person music if we play while he’s playing…
– What I always appreciated about you is how you deal with criticism. You don’t trash talk the people who bad mouth you online. Instead you embrace everything and speak about it very light hearted. Did you have this attitude from the very beginning or was it something you developed along the way? Also, why do you choose to do this instead of just ignoring them?
– We’ve never been asked this and it’s a great question! Music critics are a joke. They are fucking losers and failed musicians who don’t actually know a fucking thing about the craft of songwriting. So it’s hilarious when we get a bad review, especially if it’s from some blog that 8 people read. That said, we don’t dwell on the good ones either because, as Captain Tony Iommi said, if you’re gonna believe the good ones you gotta believe the bad ones too!
– If you were forced to listen to only 5 albums for the rest of your lives, what would your choices be?
– This is just me personally, I’m sure the rest of the band would be wildly different:
The Beatles – White Album
Waylon Jennings – Honky Tonk Heroes
ZZ Top – Fandango
Outkast – Speakerboxxx/The Love Below
Van Halen – 1984
– Thank you again for taking some time to answer. Do you have any closing words for our readers?
– Hope to see everyone on tour soon!
Interview by Metal Gentleman
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