Interview: Iwrestledabearonce Vocalist Courtney LaPlante and Guitarist-Programmer Steven Bradley Talk New Album
Experimental heavy rockers Iwrestledabearonce are almost finished with tracking their forthcoming third studio album, which is due out later this year. It will be their first with new frontwoman Courtney LaPlante, who joined the band with only a 24-hours notice in between shows on the band’s run with Warped Tour in 2012. The group is working in its band-compound/recording studio in Los Angeles, with guitarist-programmer Steven Bradley producing, engineering, mixing, and mastering the album himself.
“Well damn! After another two years of non-stop touring, some unexpected twists, and getting to visit some new and amazing places, we're finally back in the studio working on full length number three!,” Bradley says. “I've 100% never been this excited about an IWABO album, because it feels like we've finally reigned in 'our sound' even further and really hit a stride in terms of songwriting. We've always admired bands like Deftones, Cynic, Thrice, Glassjaw, Mr. Bungle, Dredg, Cephalic Carnage, The Mars Volta, etc. because they've never made the same album twice, and aren't scared to keep evolving while still maintaining their signature styles. Obviously, I'd never compare us to the greatness of those bands, but, in keeping with that mentality, we've progressed a bit more and put together our best collection of songs so far."
Below, Bradley and LaPlante fill us in some more on their forthcoming new album.
REVOLVER This record will be your third release on Century Media Records. Has this recording process been different with now a new vocalist? If so, how?
STEVEN BRADLEY Working with Courtney has been incredible! She's written so many good hooks and her vocal range is just insane. Also, she's amazing at layering harmonies on top of each other that all sound incredible. I think people are in for a shock in the best way possible, because she absolutely killed it on this album.
Courtney, as the new vocalist, you are working on your first album with the band. Do you feel there are some heavy expectations for this release?
COURNEY LAPLANTE I think the expectations from our audience are high, and I am confident we are going to exceed those expectations. Once we release a song, I think the people who support this band will accept me and really get on board with our sound and the tone of this album. I am not nervous, but I am extremely anxious to get this new material out. It is very exciting for all of us!
What should fans be expecting with this new album?
BRADLEY I think fans of our band gave up on trying to anticipate our next move a long time ago, which is honestly the point of Iwrestledabearonce! Some bands are pigeonholed into one certain style, whereas I feel like we can cover any ground we want and people won't be surprised. As far as this album, I definitely feel like we've put together the best songs of our career. There are just so many more memorable riffs and vocal hooks on this album than on anything else we've done. That's not to say that there aren't also some of the weirdest and heaviest moments of our career as well, but I really feel like we finally stepped up to the plate and put together 12 great songs, not just collections of riffs and ideas.
Should we expect to hear new music on the All Stars tour this summer? What new songs are you the most excited to play live?
BRADLEY Definitely! And damn, that's tough... Depends on my mood and what tour! This album covers a lot of ground, and I have no idea what's going to be the most fun track to play live yet. I can say for sure though that we would all love to play this entire album start to finish live at some point, and that's not something we've ever considered with our previous albums.
What are your main goals for this album?
BRADLEY Hopefully to open up some new people to our band, and in turn, to other styles of music. We'd love to make as many new friends as humanly possible. Anddddd I suppose doing another world tour would be awesome as well! Oh, and it would be great to be a billionaire...