SLAVES Open Up About Their Music, New Front-Man and More!
Get to know the band, Slaves! Their newest track, released on January 31st is called “Bury A Lie.” This is the much anticipated follow up to their previous single, “Prayers.” These songs will be on their fourth forthcoming album, “To Better Days” which is set for release later this year via SBG Records. Their previous album “Beautiful Death” surpassed 50+ million total collective streams.
When asked “Bury A Lie,” new vocalist Matt McAndrew explained, “Like many songs on the album, the lyrics deal with the feelings of a troubled relationship. The past won’t stay dead and you’re haunted by it.”
The group now features new vocalist McAndrew who was NBC’s The Voice’s runner up. They have shared the stage with Adam Levine, Fallout Boy and Dance Gavin Dance.
Check out these videos!
Slaves – “Prayers” (Music Video)-
Matt McAndrew Performing with Adam Levine (Maroon 5)-
Matt McAndrew Performing with Fall Out Boy-
Learn more about Slaves in the following All Access interview-
Happy New Year! When it comes to your music, what are you most excited about for 2020?
Thank you! I think we are most excited to show everyone how hard we’ve been working. 2019 was a hell of a year for us and we’ve grown so much from it. We really feel that everything this band has gone through has really shaped us into the band we are today and we want to show people that no matter what life throws at you, no matter what cards are dealt, its all about perseverance and using the bad to motivate and drive you to making something special.
Can you recall the moment when you thought you could be in this group together? Do you find that your band name still represents you and your music today?
I think after our first tour with Matt we all realized that we are finally a complete group of guys who all share the same motivation, goals, and determination we need to make our dreams come true. As far as the name, even though nobody in the current line up came up with it, we still think it represents a lot of what this band is about, a lot of what our songs are about. It about freeing yourself of being a slave to whatever it may be that is holding you back, whether its addiction, depression, relationship troubles, work, even your own negative thoughts.
How do you think your hometown has influenced the sound and how you all carry yourselves in this group? If not, why is that?
Our group is very diverse as far as hometown influences. We all live in different areas of America, and I think that is one of the things that make our sound. I think since this band started, we’ve always played around with trying to see how seamless we can blend genres. Personally, Felipe and I grew up and played around in high school bands with really talented group of kids like Mat Must (Blackbear), and Lou Miceli from palisades, it was a very small town with not a lot to do so our group of friends picked up some instruments and started a bunch of bands.
What has it been like having Matt McAndrew join the band as your new vocalist?
Cannot say enough about that guy. Matt is one of the most talented people I know. Aside from fitting so well sonically with our band, I think almost more importantly his personality is the PERFECT fit for the band and he came into it when we needed it the most. He brings a very positive and inspirational vibe to the band, and I think we all feel fortunate to not only have a friend like him on board with us, but to be able to make music with him as well.
Let’s talk about your newest single, “Bury A Lie.” Did anything about the process of putting it together surprise any of you? What was it like making the music video for it? How creatively involved were you all with the making of it?
Bury A Lie was a really fun song to create. That song was written in the studio, and was written around the opening riff of the song. I guess one of the things that surprised us was how smooth the song came together. I don’t want to say it was easy to write any of the songs because the whole album was so much work in such a short period of time, but after hearing Weston lay down the initial riff, I think we were all on board with the direction we wanted it to go. The music video was super fun, we got to bury Matt in a wooden box, and not gonna lie that was pretty satisfying. We did 7 videos in one week, so I think at this time we all just had tunnel vision.
Do you have to plans to release more new music soon and a full collection of new music?
Yes, we have 9 music videos done for this album and plan on releasing quite a few of them before releasing the full album.
Generally, how does this group go about writing your music? Do you write together or separately? What is the first step in your music-making process?
Most of the time it comes from a riff, or idea the one of us came up with. If we all like it, and have ideas where the song should go, we will start putting it together and start building the song with everyone’s individual flavor.
I always like to ask bands if you all hang out socially apart from the music? When you aren’t working on music, do you guys hang out for fun?
Aside from all of us being together most of the time due to touring, writing, or and other band obligations, we don’t actually get together THAT often due to the distance. Even with past members the band has always been scattered. But now Felipe and I live in the same town so we will go out and socialize with mutual friends, and Zack and Matt both live in different parts of LA, I know they do things like hiking and work out at the gym together.
How do you feel that this band has grown through the years? What has remained the same?
The band has grown into a group that is 100% focused and motivated. I think that band has turned into something really positive that people can look up to and take inspiration from our story. As tough and discouraging as things got, we never gave up, we never took no for an answer, and despite the hate we’ve gotten we kept pushing through and we are all in it for the right reasons.
Where do you think you are all happiest- in the studio recording new music, on stage performing or elsewhere?
Both the studio and the stage would be our happy place. In the studio you can to create something the world is gonna hear with your best friends, you can to send your message out to the world. On stage, you get to convey your message and entertain. Inside both of those worlds, we get to do what we love, and that truly is trying to help people get through the shitty times using our songs. That is the reason all 5 of us are doing this.
What do you think makes for an ideal show for this band? What have been some of your favorite shows and venues lately?
That is a tough one. We’ve played so many good venues, cities, and countries. Bomb factory in Dallas is a favorite, we love playing Australia, and Brazil was pretty amazing for us. But honestly, as long as its a heartfelt crowd that is bringing the energy, it doesn’t matter to us.
Where are you excited to head to this year? Do you have any 2020 dates scheduled yet?
The only thing we have scheduled so far is a Sacramento show in the summer that we can’t announce yet, other than that we are tying some loose ends business wise before we start touring. But releasing this new album and touring is definitely what we are most exited about in 2020.
With all the different social media platforms out there, how do you balance it all? How do you think that social media has impacted this band? How often are you all on your different sites interacting with fans? How have you been able to utilize it through the years?
I think one of the biggest things we’ve come to realize over the past couple years is just how important social media is. Its not the old days anymore where the only promo you had was putting on a great show and having word of mouth grow your audience. People need to see what your doing and feel personally connected with their favorite band. Especially at this for us as a band, its important for people to get to know us individually, see our personalities, and connect with us. Its so easy to judge a band based off what you hear alone, but social media allows people to make their own opinions on us and its just so important to us to be able to show everyone the vibes on the band on a personal level.
We are currently living through a very trying and politically charged time right now so I am curious to know how you all think being musicians and in this band still gives you the most joy in life today?
Well first and foremost its what all 5 of us have ALWAYS wanted to do. We are all living our dreams. I think that most of us fall into some level of depression on our off time, especially if we don’t keep ourselves busy. Also our job is to relieve people of the stresses from their jobs, and provide entertainment for them to slip away from all that. Yes we are fulfilling ourselves and living our dreams, but the biggest thing is we are providing an escape for people that may not enjoy their job as much or feel like they have become slave to it. We are providing an escape for them, and when it comes down to the things that matter in this life, we have realized that this is our purpose and this is what matters most.
What musicians have really been inspiring you all since you first started making music? Who would you still love to work with?
I know we all individually have a very wide range of inspiration, but for me personally it ranges from Radiohead, third eye blind, Michael Jackson, circa survive. I don’t honestly it always fluctuates, but those artist mentioned pop up in my head whenever I think about it. Recording/collaborating a song with John Feldman would be cool, a tour/collaboration with BMTH would be pretty awesome.
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
We hope that whatever it is you’re going through, from the devastating emotional times, to the greatest day of you life, you can turn on one of our songs/albums, and it can lift you up, motivate you and inspire you. We all have those certain bands/albums that you can turn on and it will help make that day, that hour, that couple minutes just a little easier, and we want to be that band.