Interview: Suicide Silence, Rochester, NY

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Word and Photos By Amber James

Last week, the Straight Outta Hell tour with Suicide Silence and Whitechapel came through Rochester, NY. Before the show I got a chance to sit down with Eddie Hermida, the vocalist behind Suicide Silence and ask a few questions about the tour, their new album, and a few other things. That is after we spent the first few minutes discussing our mutual love of Star Wars and Harry Potter because Hermida saw my lightsaber tattoo.

So, how long have you guys been on this tour?

I think we’re just over the halfway mark so I think we’ve been on tour for two weeks and a couple days.

What has been like so far?

Amazing. This is the first time this tour has ever happened, Whitechapel and Suicide Silence have never done a US tour before other than you know Warped Tour. We did one run together in Europe and that’s when we decided that this needed to happen in the states. It’s going crazy, everyone is really stoked on the whole show.

I know, I keep looking outside at the line and seeing how many people are and thinking ‘RIP this venue’ tonight.

Tonight this venue might explode.

From what I know, it’s owned by some older people so they might not know what’s about to happen.

Yeaaaaaa, I saw the barbershop quartet sign upstairs and I thought ‘they’re probably not ready for this’.

We had, last summer, one of the final Bane tours come through here and they tried stopping people from crowd surfing and stage diving. The show was stopped during Bane’s set so it was like an acoustic Bane singalong. So it makes me wonder if they know what the bands playing are like tonight.

Well, we’ll play it until the wheels fall off and that’s just how we roll.

Despised Icon just hopped on the tour last night (Tuesday, 10/11), so are you guys excited to have another one of the staples from yesteryear to be joining up with you guys?

You know, Despised Icon, Suicide Silence, Job For A Cowboy, my old band All Shall Perish, we’re all kind of originators of this style, so it’s kinda cool to see one of the OGs play their songs. Especially since the last two albums they released were really fucking good. So, in the end, I was really happy to have them, they’re really good friends of ours.

I know a lot of people, who when this was announced, were excited over Suicide Silence and Despised Icon because we never got to see them way back when so now it’s our chance. Especially in a smaller intimate venue.

This is how we started, in 2006.

It’s been ten years! I know you guys also recorded a new album this summer. What was it like recording with Ross Robinson?

Amazing. He’s 100% not what people make him out to be. People talk about him like he’s really this enraged human being where if you don’t do something right, he fucks you up. But it’s not like that at all. It’s very much like he fucks you up in a different, he makes you delve deep inside yourself and figure out why the hell you’re making music to begin with. You know, it’s kind of that perfect kick in the ass that everyone needs. It was an honor to work with him. 

Is there anything you’re able to divulge about the new album at all?

It’s our self-titled record and it’s going to be coming out in around February. We’ll probably be releasing some snippets and some videos and music in the upcoming months so keep your ears to the ground.

It’ll be a nice little mid-winter pick me up. Especially in north east winters.

A little Thanksgiving love.

A little something to start us at the beginning of winter and keep us going all through the winter.

It’ll be like eggnog. It’s only going to be there for the winter. We’ll ease in with some apple cider and whiskey and then switch over to eggnog.

You guys also went to Asia as well, what is playing your music to a completely different crowd like?

Yeah, it was the first time we’d been back to Asia since 2014 and China and Southeast Asia. We also played Japan for the first time ever in the thirteen years the band has been a band.

How was the response to you guys over there since it was your first time there ever?

Oh my god, sold out show in Tokyo, Osaka brought out like 500 people. We played Hiroshima and didn’t expect anyone and there were like 75-100 people there. It was really cool to get some time off in Japan and walk around too. We had a really good time, China was amazing. I would say that since it’s the end of the record cycle and in the last 3-4 years, the trend in all these different countries have moved them towards popper music, more DJ music and whatnot that the turnouts weren’t as big as the first time we came through. But they were still really good and they were still really fired up.

It’s like did the whole city or country come? They just declared that day Suicide Silence day and we’re all just going to travel to their show.

Honestly, that’s how it’s like in Indonesia. They put on all these festivals and make them really cheap for the locals. It’s a lot of farmers out there, people who don’t have a lot of money. So, they make these big, big festivals that are all sponsored by this big local sponsor, there will be like 5-10,000 people show up and you’re like ‘holy shit, you guys don’t all like metal’. But they all get down, they all have a good time.

It’s also something fun to go do, that they usually don’t get to have happened.

Yeah, it’s like a carnival or something.

It’s been a few years since you’ve taken over as vocalist. How has it been making the band your own?  Putting your own spin on things that have been around before you were here?

Well, I’ve been saying for a while when I joined the band I had been friends with the guys for so long. I had seen all their sets, seen them perform, on stage, offstage, from the pit; I had experienced Suicide Silence for so much of my life it made stepping in easy. The hardest part was feeling comfortable in front of Suicide Silence’s crowds because, you never know, if people are harboring a disdain for the fact that Suicide Silence moved forward without Mitch. You never know how people feel. If you allow your mind to do what it does, you’re going to think negatively. But beating that has been the challenge and understanding that, no matter what, I’m doing what’s right in my heart. That’s what makes it all palpable. I feel now that the band is 100% mine and I am 100% theirs, we are one unit now. It feels really good and I am really happy to be in this band.

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