Drew Ailes of Lambgoat recently conducted an interview with HATEBREED frontman Jamey Jasta. A few excerpts from the chat follow:
Lambgoat: You mentioned getting out and playing some new songs. Can you tell me about the next HATEBREED record and if there's anyone you're looking at for production/engineering and what sort of changes people can expect? The typical new album questions.
Jamey: "Well, there's not going to be a ton of changes. Obviously we do want to challenge ourselves, but we are what we are at this point. If you hate us, you're definitely going to hate the new album. If you love us, I think you're going to love it. It kind of is what it is. We want to speed it up on some parts, slow it down on other parts — I mean, we're going to...I think, add more of Sean as backing vocals and stuff, which he's been doing live now for four years, but we never really did it on the album. I think we're definitely going in almost a more metal route. If people enjoy songs like 'Doomsayer' and 'A Call For Blood', the ones that are pretty fast and brutal, I think that's the direction that we're going. At least the two songs that we're going to be playing on the tour are pretty fast and in your face. They're called 'Spitting Venom' and 'Defeatist'."
Lambgoat: While I know you've done a lot of guest work recently or in the past, I'm curious if you have any guest musicians slated for the new album?
Jamey: "No, you know, I don't think we probably will have any guests on this record. We talked about having Freddy from MADBALL and Roger from AGNOSTIC FRONT being on one song together, because they've never been on a song together, but we ended up making it happen for the last AGNOSTIC FRONT record. It never made the record but we got a remix done where Freddy was on the song and ended up being in the video. But no, I don't know. It'd be killer to get Zakk Wylde or someone to do a solo on it, but we'll see what happens. It's going to be a totally and completely bombastic album. I think we want the focus just to stay sort of on us. I think so many people are so used to seeing the big stickers like, 'Featuring this and that...'"
Lambgoat: I don't really know how I feel about those stickers. Usually I might actually be steered away as I figure it might be a gimmick to rope fans of bands that wouldn't normally check it out. I think that might exactly be what it is.
Jamey: "Like on 'Perseverence', even though we had Kerry King [SLAYER] singing and playing guitar on it, it was never in the deal that we were going to have it on a sticker. We just didn't want it to even be a mention, but for people who read the liner notes, they'd say, 'Oh wow, that's Kerry King playing that solo on that song.'"
Lambgoat: Well, how do Ozzfest kids react at shows with hardcore kids? Have you noticed anything consistent between the two crowds? Do they co-exist a little more than in the past, or…
Jamey: "Yeah, you know, the first Ozzfest, I think, was the most culture shock involved. We were coming off our first album and we were one of the only bands that never had to pay to get on Ozzfest. We were rotating bands, but we weren't a nu-metal or like, a rapcore band. We were the only pretty much heavier sort of band on the bill. It was SPINESHANK, UNLOCO, NONPOINT...so by the time we came out some days, it was just people getting mauled. At one show, actually, I remember MTV was there, I think it was somewhere in northern Florida, and during our set it was like, 300 skinheads just beating the entire crowd. People actually left the second stage because it was just people getting beaten. Security came out and it was this big ordeal and MTV had footage of it and they were appalled at what had happened and...I don't know. It was pretty crazy to see because there were definitely a lot of fights going on at one time. But I guess as that style of music became less popular and the heavier stuff started to grow...you've got to understand, in 2000, LIMP BIZKIT was still really popular, and more of the radio-type bands. So we were a real, real, different kind of sound for that bill."
Lambgoat: That was a weird year, too, as far as the line-up went. I remember the first Ozzfest had anything from MACHINE HEAD to TYPE O NEGATIVE.
Jamey: "Yeah, and that one had like, CHEVELLE and TAPROOT...we just really didn't fit into the mix. But our fans did come out and represent for us in a lot of the bigger cities. The New Jersey show alone was just one big riot. It was an awesome show. And Hartford, too. Going back to our home state, that really sent a huge message out there that a hardcore band could go on a big tour and go over well. From then on, Ozzfest completely changed their line-up."
Lambgoat: And now you're one of the bigger draws.
Jamey: "Right, we were lucky to co-headline for two years. We did it once with DOWN and we did it once with SLIPKNOT. But when we did it with DOWN, that was the summer of the 'Perseverence' album, and that album sold 300,000 copies in the states. So that was like, that was one of the biggest hardcore/metal type records of that time. So it made more sense that we were doing it and we had more fans that were from different walks of life. It wasn't what it was in 2000 when we were still unknown to a lot of those Ozzfest-type fans. We had done tours with SLAYER at that point and that's when really sort of crossed over."
Lambgoat: Two last questions: what's the biggest setback that HATEBREED has ever had to endure?
Jamey: "There was probably two. I think right when 'Rise of Brutality' came out, losing 1100 employees at Universal. That was a major blow. Losing our A&R, our publicist, all our field reps, like, everybody that really fought to make 'Perseverence' such a big album. And then we lost our manager. Our manager died in March. At that point, it made me really think about my true reasons for doing music. It was really super disheartening. But, you know, the amazing thing was even without the publicity and a lot of promotion and all the bells and whistles that come with being on a label with that many employees, 'Rise of Brutality' went on to sell over 200,000 copies, we got a Grammy nomination, and we did tons of killer tours."
Lambgoat: I was going to ask that. How does that make you feel? Getting a Grammy nomination?
Jamey: "It was baffling. We were in Jacksonville when we found out we got nominated. For something that has absolutely nothing to do with our style of music or any bearing on our personal lives or anything, it was just amazing to think that they noticed what we did. And to also be in a category with MOTÖRHEAD, CRADLE OF FILTH, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE, and SLIPKNOT, we were like, at least we made our mark, so to speak, with the industry and the academy or the people that run that. That was pretty crazy."
Read the entire interview at Lambgoat.com.