Yes! I finally got to interview one of my top favourite bands! If some of you think I’m fan-girling too much, deal with it. Let me see you control your excitement when you meet one of your “A-List” bands.
As I said, I’m so happy I got to interview RED. After reading their responses to our questions, it made me understand, love, and respect them more. To me, they truly understand the different colours of life; that it isn’t an all puffy cotton candy clouds and lollipops land, but has a grey side in which most of us hide our deepest fears and darkest secrets, and that most people are fooled by the masks we wear everyday,without knowing the truth screaming within.
So, without further ado…MetaLadies & Rock Gents, here’s RED!
• For starters, could you tell your fans in the Arab region more about RED?
RED is a hard rock band from Nashville, TN, formed in 2004. Members are Michael Barnes, Anthony and Randy Armstrong.
The three of us grew up together. We’ve been friends for 29 years and we moved to Nashville in 2002 to pursue a career in music, and our first album was released on June 6th, 2006.
• Everyone starts somewhere, how did you guys begin? And how have you grown since?
We started in high school by getting involved in all aspects of music. We fell in love with performing by watching our favorite bands at music festivals. We have grown through experience and age.
• At every beginning, there are always trials and errors. What challenges did you face? And how did you overcome them?
We first had to convince ourselves that we had just as good a shot as anyone at making it in the music business. We pursued our goals with tenacity and didn’t wait for things to happen for us. We made them happen.
• How have you guys musically developed since your 1st album End of Silence?
We have a strong understanding of what our band is on the listener front. Over the years we have become better musicians, performers and writers. Nothing that can be accomplished without getting on the road and touring.
• Of all the songs you’ve written, which song is closer to each of you?
Anthony – ‘Fight to Forget’
Randy – ‘Faceless’
Michael – ‘Feed the Machine’
• What inspired you to write Of Beauty and Rage?
OBAR is a very personal album. We wanted to write songs that were again, universal for an audience but also write about our own trials more than ever before. It’s about recognizing the beautiful things God is doing in the midst of the most difficult times we face.
• Of Beauty and Rage seems more personal compared to your other albums. Is that true? If so, why?
The album is more about us and not so much about what our fans wanted to hear songs about. We are just as vulnerable as they are.
• Could you tell us about your 2 instrumental opening and closing tracks ‘Descent’ and ‘Ascent’? Why those 2 titles?
We were in a dark time when we were making this album. Personal heartbreak and loss led to some of the most creative and inspiring songs we have ever written. The studio became the therapy and partnered with our faith, it was one of the most uplifting experiences to be together and work through the dark times together as we created.
• ‘Darkest Part’sounds to me as the storyteller/ narrator to the storyline tracks that follow. How would you describe it?
It’s a song about vulnerability. We all feel like we can’t let others in sometimes, because of fear of judgement. People are afraid or turned off by the church (the people) of believers because of this fear. We can’t let things dictate our personal well being. We have to let God be in control.
• Now at the end of the ‘Darkest Part’ music video, you guys added a flashback scene from ‘Feed the Machine’ from your album Release the Panic. Can you tell us about the link between both videos?
It’s actually not a flashback. The whole video is based on a dream that Anthony was having while he was strapped to the wall in the opening scene of FTM. He wakes up from that dream attached to the machine. We are all constantly breaking away from the things that drag us down, only to find ourselves being dragged down again. Life is a constant battle between our best intentions and our human instincts and sinful nature. The videos are metaphorical concerning that battle. We have to fight.
• I felt that Release the Panic was more of a revolutionary album, yet after that, you gave Of Beauty and Rage a sort of softer and melodic side. Could you explain the shift in rhythms?
We were intentional about stripping things down on that album. We had made three albums of heavily produced music and we needed to get away from that and explore. It wasn’t our most popular album but we got some great songs out of that one.
• If you could collaborate with anyone (male or female artists), who would it be?
Hans Zimmer would be an incredible honor. He writes some of the most amazing scores for movies and our music has that cinematic feel.
• Besides Within Temptation, you’re the only band I know who have turned their musical storyline into a graphic novel. Would you please give your Arab fans a teaser about it?
The novel was something different we wanted to try. We have never seen a band do that before so being the pioneers we always want to be, we gave it a shot. It’s a unique way for us to tell the story of the Release the Panic, Feed the Machine, and Darkest Part trilogy. A movie is what it needs to be.
• Surely you guys have had some one to one meetings with your fans throughout your tours. Which fan story touched you the most?
It’s always touching to hear about fans whose lives changed overnight from hearing just one song. We had a young man come up to us after a show and hand us a razor blade as he extended his scarred arms towards us. He wanted to let us know that our music helped him to stop self-mutilating. We were touched by his story and that is an example of why we do this.
• Do you have any plans of touring MENA (Middle East & Arab) regions?
Nothing is in the works but we are always open to the invite. Hint hint!
• A word to your Arab fans.
Thank you for your support and we hope to have the opportunity to play for you some day! Kill the Machine.