A Q&A with Horror Dance Squad

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Metalcore-punk assault from Estonia – here’s a conversation with drummer Henri…

How did you get the title of your latest album, and what does it mean to you?
No Flag Will Fly Forever is a collection of songs exploring essential topics both eternal and specific to this era of humanity’s evolution. From the things that affect us all: climate change, racism, overt nationalism, the dangerous rise of the new fascist movements all around the world, injustice in our social and political systems; to the intensely personal experiences of spiritual and psychological growth and relationship health, this album is a voyage through the human condition as we experience it in our day and age. As humans, we are more genetically and mentally similar than any of the apparent physical differences that have historically separated us. Where we are born is a lottery and the definitions of nationality and race are fleeting and transparent compared to the things that make us essentially human. Borders change, money changes, languages change, rules change, religions change, flags change – but we remain human. And as humans, we are more the same on the inside than what we see on the outside.

What was the hardest part about putting this release together, and why?
There wasn’t anything particularly difficult about writing, recording and releasing this album. However, we have certainly been working very hard on it for the last few years. Not only on the production, but on making sure it gets out there during these difficult times.

Who produced the release, and how would you say they helped shape it?
We recorded the album with our good friend Sander Sadam who has always been ready with some healthy constructive criticism. And once we had all of the songs close to where we wanted them, we sent them over to Cody Stewart (The Browning) who helped us polish them up and make sure they were the best they could be.

What do you want the listener to take away from hearing your music?
The desire to dance and sing along.

How does a track normally come together for the band? Can you tell us a bit about that process?
Our song writing process is a full-band effort and very collaborative. While we often start with guitars and drums before working on vocals and lyrics, the moment an idea is born the whole band is invested in making sure we are writing the best song we can. Karl has become quite a master of vocal melodies and Ian writes the majority of the lyrics for the band, although the topics are always those which all of us feel are important.

How would you say that the sound of your band has changed over the last year?
The main changes actually began a few years back when we began to include electronics in our songs and focused on writing more melodic choruses. From there we evolved our style into a hybrid of metalcore and punk that truly reflects our personalities as members of the band.

horror dance squad interview henriWhat bands/artists have influenced you the most since you started your own band/project, and why?
We have been largely inspired by bands like Bring Me the Horizon, Enter Shikari, Parkway Drive, and Sikth for the way they have shaped the genre. We have been particularly inspired by the way Bring Me the Horizon has evolved and the skill they show as songwriters.

When the world is back to normal, where would you really like to tour, and why?
We’ve been growing an audience in Russia and would love to go and play some shows with our neighbours to the East. And since our vocalist Ian is from the US, he has been itching to bring us to his hometown of Pittsburgh so his friends and family can come to see us play. But, of course, we’re eager to get out there and play our music for everyone, everywhere!

If you could only pick one track for our reader to listen to, to get a taster of your music, which one would you go for, and why?
Perhaps a good place to start would be our song ‘Happy Face’. It has a great mix of our more melodic side with a surprisingly heavy breakdown when you least expect it.

Where do you see your band in five years’ time?
Smashing stages, melting faces and having a damn good time making the music we love.

The album ‘No Flag Will Fly Forever’ by Horror Dance Squad is out now
For more info visit facebook.com/HorrorDanceSquadOfficial

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