In This Moment - 20/10/2008

IN THIS MOMENT is an American metalcore band formed in 2005 after singer Maria Brink and guitarist Chris Howorth met through common friends. The two immediately realized that they had something special with one another and they began writing songs together. Soon thereafter they enlisted the help of Los Angeles drummer Jeff Fabb. By mid-2005, the lineup included Brink, Howorth, Fabb, guitarist Blake Bunzel, and bassist Josh Newell. The band recorded demos and posted them on MySpace where they generated an internet following. The demos included rough versions of "Ashes", "The Legacy of Odio", "Next Life", "This Moment", and "Prayers", as well as a cover of Slayer's "Postmortem". By the end of the year IN THIS MOMENT had generated a fanbase due to diligent internet marketing, largely due to the do-it-yourself touring. This sparked an interest from Century Media Records, and a worldwide record deal followed and soon thereafter the band released ‘Beautiful Tragedy’ (2007) and toured Europe for the first time.

 

The band released their second album entitled ‘The Dream’ in September 2008. This album features somewhat of a departure from their 'Metal-core' sound on the first album (with 'The Great Divide' being the only song really featuring Maria's signature screams). ‘The Dream’ centers heavily on Maria's clean vocals, integration of piano, strong hooks, and solid songwriting. The difference is really dramatic in a positive sense. Although Maria has always been the centerpiece of the band, she really blossoms on ‘The Dream’, and it is obvious she is truly realizing her talents. The vocal melodies are stronger and more memorable, and the vocal production on ‘The Dream’ (which was a tad inferior on ‘Beautiful Tragedy’) has truly brought her to the forefront to showcase her talents. Chris has also found new ways to expand his sound, with clean solos and other dynamics added into his already crushing tone, making the canvas which Maria paints upon more interesting.

 

 

It appears there is much to talk about and lead guitarist Chris Howorth is available to answer some questions. Here you can read what hes had to say to the readers of Metal-Experience.com

 

First of all, congratulations with the release of your new album 'The Dream'

which came out recently in Europe.

Thanks a lot! We are very excited to have it released in Europe.

 

In This Moment formed in 2005, your first album 'Beautiful Tragedy' was released on March 20, 2007 and now you’ve finished another album entitled 'The Dream', so many things happened after you formed back in 2005. Could you start this interview off with a short introduction of the band and the origin of the name for our readers?

Hey everyone, the band is Maria Brink (vocals) Jesse Landry (bass) Jeff Fabb (drums) Blake Bunzel (guitar) and myself (guitar) ..when the band first formed Maria and I were trying to come up with a name and I threw out "In This Moment" as a joke, we decided to go with it till we came up with something better and it stuck like glue, it fits us really well.

 

It's been less than 1-1/2 years since 'Beautiful Tragedy' came out. How did you launch into writing material for 'The Dream' and did you guys spend a fair amount of time working on the record before heading over to record the album?

We decided we were going to do a new album while we were still on tour, and started recording little ideas and riffs and stuff, once the tour ended we started working really hard, we spent about 3 months writing in Los Angeles and then spent about 2 months in Las Vegas recording the album.

 

How did you launch into writing material for 'The Dream' and did ideas come

easily so that you just had to write them down or was it more of a careful composing thing?

At first we were terrified to have to write so many new songs in such a limited time but once we started writing things just flowed so easily, the songs came pouring out of us, we had almost 20 rough songs done in a relatively short time.

 

 

What were the goals you had in mind when you started to record 'The Dream',

any elements you definitely wanted to have on the album?

The main goal going in was to write the best songs we could, we didn't want to place any restrictions on what we could or couldn't do, we just wrote from our hearts.

 

Was it a conscious decision to do it this way?

I guess, the only thing we were conscious of was writing the best songs we could.

 

Could you please describe the implications of the title 'The Dream', what does it stand for and is there a special meaning behind it?

The meaning behind the title "The Dream" is pretty simple, we are a band that believes in the power of dreams and that believing is creating, we spent most of last year living our dreams and everything that has happened with this band is like a dream.

 

Who was responsible for writing the songs and the lyrics on this album and where do you get your inspiration from? What would you say are the main themes in your lyrics ?

The band writes the songs and Maria writes all the lyrics, the band gets inspired from all kinds of things and Maria's lyrics are usually always inspired by things she has gone through in her life.

 

Is the music written independently of the lyrics or do you try to reflect lyrical ideas through the music?

A lot of times the music is independent of the lyrics but if something needs to be changed musically to fit the vocals we do it immediately.

 

How important is it to you that people pay attention to the lyrics apart from listening to the music?

It's very important, the lyrics are very heart felt and give true depth and emotions to the songs, people can relate to the lyrics and find there own meanings.

 

What is the utmost important ingredient for a song according to you?

A catchy riff and a hooky vocal melody, that's the basic ingredients of our song process.

 

 

Which come first, lyrics or melodies? Is it like you sit down and write a new song because you need more material now or do you wait until you get an

idea?

Maria almost always comes up with melodies before writing lyrics, the song and melodies inspire the lyrics a lot of times.

 

How has the band's sound progressed from your first album to 'The Dream', what do you think are the main differences?

I think we just grew a lot, on the last album we would have guitar riffs in a song just because we thought it had to be there to be heavy, this time like I keep saying we focused more on what was best for each individual song, if the song called for a heavy riff we put it in, if not we didn't. We also wanted more focus on the vocals this time.

 

How did the recording process proceed this time, did you work differently than on your previous album and how much time did you spend in the studio?

The process this time was totally different than with the last record, we worked on each song individually and Kevin Churko played a huge part in developing each song with us, we were in the studio almost 2 months, we recorded and lived in the same house the whole time.

 

The Production of 'The Dream' was done by Kevin Churko, what made him the

perfect man for In this Moment?

Kevin was brought to us by our manager and after our first meeting with Kevin we knew we had to work with him, his whole approach was different than we had ever experienced before, he also had lots of experience working with amazing female vocalists, and we loved his work on Ozzy's "Black Rain" album!

 

 

In which things/songs on the new album can one clearly hear his vision and

ideas?

"Forever" is a perfect  example of Kevin's influence, it was a good song to begin with and Kevin made it great, he added  some great colors and really brought the vocals to the fore front.

 

Are third party opinions (press, fans, etc.) on your music important to you? Or are your music and band the only things that matter?

We could care less what other people say, sometimes when people are

overly rude or offensive then that will bother us a bit, but we don't write for the press or fans, we write songs we like from our hearts, and hope other people like them too.

 

Overall, are you pleased with the outcome of the songs or would you have liked to have changed anything in retrospective?

We are completely happy with all the songs on "The Dream" and wouldn’t change anything.

 

What element of the CD are you most proud of?

Just the overall songwriting, we wrote some really catchy stuff this time.

 

I'd like to talk about your personal goals nowadays, specifically as a musician. Is there a particular area in your playing that you are still working on?

I would love to become a better lead player, I look at guys like John Petrucci and Yngwie and am blown away.

 

Which song is your favorite one to play live? Which song do you find is the most challenging one to play live?

I love playing "Daddy's Falling Angel" it’s so full of energy, the most challenging to play right now is probably "Forever" because there are so many different dynamics involved.

 

Who are your greatest influences - both in terms of composition, as well as your guitar playing?

I find a lot of influence from 80's metal bands and guitarists like Ozzy Osbourne, Whitesnake, Def Leppard, Metallica, even Motley Crue or Ratt.

 

Can you tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of things that motivate you in your writing, your poetry, and your lyrics?

The things that motivate me are my family and friends and my love of music.

 

What were the highlights and low points throughout your career?

The low points would be all the years prior to In This Moment struggling to keep my dream alive and not give up. The Highlights are everything that's happened since forming this band.

 

 

Which album has been your biggest musical influence, one that made you think "this is what I want to do!"?

Michael Jackson ‘Thriller’ and Kiss are the first bands that made me want to play.

 

How would you sum up In This Moment to someone that has never listened to the band?

Great rock/metal band!

 

The metalcore scene exploded in the last couple of years in the United States, hundreds of bands seem to have popped up. So In your opinion, what makes In This Moment stand out compared to other bands?

"The Dream" proves that we are NOT metalcore and what makes us stand out is not making the same record over and over, we are a band that will always grow with each new release.

 

What is your opinion on the metal scene these days, what do you think about

the overload of this kind of bands at the moment and is there anything missing in the scene?

I dont really have an opinion, there are always new bands in music, some are good and some aren't so good, but it's all a matter of personal preference.

 

Where do you see the band going within the next couple of years, and where

do you see the band's musical direction going for the next album?

Our goal is to continue growing and taking things to the next level for us, as far as the next album that all depends on how we feel when the time comes, but whatever we do, it will be In This Moment.

 

Any last statement?

Anyone reading this who is a fan or has supported us, thank you and we love you!

 

Thanks for your time.

 

 

Members:

Maria Brink - Vocals

Chris Howorth - Lead Guitar

Blake Bunzel - Guitar

Jesse Landry - Bass

Jeff Fabb - Drums

 

Albums:

Prayers EP (2006)

Beautiful Tragedy (2007)

The Dream (2008)