RadioactiveMike Z, host of the Riverside, California-based radio station 96.7 KCAL-FM program "Wired In The Empire", recently conducted an interview with guitarist Corey Beaulieu of Florida metallers TRIVIUM. You can listen to the entire chat via the SoundCloud widget below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On the heavier nature of their 2017 "The Sin And The Sentence" studio album:
Corey: "Yeah, basically for the last two records, we tried some different things and tried to do some different things with our sound and focus on one aspect of our sound a little more than the other. Also, it was out of necessity for what was going on at the time. Matt [Heafy, vocals/guitar] had a vocal issue at one point and couldn't scream anymore, so that led to us to work around the situation for this record. He was able to re-learn how to scream in a way that didn't hurt his voice. When we were touring for 'Silence In The Snow', we had some big songs from that record that got a lot of fans. 'Until The World Goes Cold' is one of the highest Spotify streaming songs. We definitely gained a lot out of that record. We saw that while touring that certain things we'd play from the old records and certain things we would see fans would really react to. We'd see what our fans really gravitate toward and what really connects with them and what they like about our sound, so we just wanted to go back to riffing out and playing heavy stuff. The last record was a little simplistic in a way, so we wanted to unleash and do whatever the hell we wanted. Bring the intensity back and get some darker, heavier stuff going on. Also, the addition of our new drummer Alex [Bent], amplified that statement. Now we have a drummer that's capable of playing anything we can possibly think of and play everything from super-technical, crazy drumming, to playing church music and stuff. He's got a wide palette of influences and skill sets. Once he came in and we started jamming on some songs and seeing what he was able to do, you could just hear the chains breaking off of our brains. We were like, 'Wow, there's no limitations to what we can do writing-wise.' So, we kind of went crazy. This record came out really fast just jamming. It's exactly what the band needed and gave it an adrenaline shot in the arm. It's definitely nice to see the fans are reacting to it as positively as they have."
On the songwriting process for "The Sin And The Sentence":
Corey: "We kind of let the songs develop until we felt like they were done. Some songs came out longer because the songs just wrote itself. It told us when it was done. You can tell when you're writing a song if it feels incomplete or not, so we tried to do some creative stuff and not try to get into a cookie-cutter song creation, the typical pop verse-chorus, very by-the-numbers. Throw in some mix ups and stuff in there. It's fun in the songwriting way to let your hair down and go for it."
On how he and Heafy determine who will record guitar solos:
Corey: "That's always been quite easy for us, even from the beginning. Usually, there's more than one solo in a song. Matt's always, when we're in the studio or writing the stuff, he's in vocals and lyric mode and working with Paolo [Gregoletto, bass] for the vocal stuff and really trying to take a lot of time to make sure the vocals are top-notch and that's a very important aspect of our songs. Most of the solos, the last couple of records, I've done the majority of them. Matt, kind of, is very casually, 'Yeah, just leave me a couple.' Over time, we kind of know each other's style of how we play that we know if there's a section we're going to have a solo over, the music we're playing we'll know that it will fit Matt more or this solo would be more of my thing. It depends on what you're creating over that dictates who gets the solo. It's kind of easy. We don't really paper-rock-scissors over the solos."
On whether TRIVIUM has any plans to celebrate their 20th anniversary next year:
Corey: "I doubt it. No one really knew about the band for the first four or five years unless you lived in Orlando and went to Matt's high school. So, I don't really consider [it] 20 years. Obviously, the band has been around since '99. We don't really think about it too much like that. I have more of an appreciation for the albums than the start of the band. Yeah, it's cool. Matt was just talking about it the other day, like, 'It's almost been 20 years since I've been in this band.' He started it when he was 14, so it's pretty cool that something he started when he was 14 and we're still cranking it out."
Heafy recently left the band's current North American headlining tour to be at home with his wife as they await the birth of twins. In his absence, TRIVIUM is playing all scheduled shows with assistance from former KILLSWITCH ENGAGE and current LIGHT THE TORCH frontman Howard Jones, YouTube comedian/musician Jared Dines and AVATAR frontman Johannes Eckerström.
The band's current trek with LIGHT THE TORCH and AVATAR is scheduled to run through November 3 in Berkeley, California.
"The Sin And The Sentence" was released in October 2017 via Roadrunner. The disc was recorded with producer Josh Wilbur (LAMB OF GOD, GOJIRA) at Santa Ana, California's Hybrid Studios. The LP features the band's first recordings with Bent, who joined the band in 2016.