Interview: Silverstein - 10/12/2009

Just before wrapping up their touring schedule of 2009, Alter The Press sat down with Paul Koehler of Silverstein prior to their headline show at the London Scala.

Paul spoke to ATP about how 2009 was for the band, their recent tour with Billy Talent, new material, touring Japan with Avril Lavigne and more.

Alter The Press: How has the European tour been so far?
Paul Koehler: It's been a short run in the UK, with only three dates, but we've been in mainland Europe for a month supporting Billy Talent, and actually before that, we were on tour for three weeks in the US, so we are on a seven week tour actually.

ATP: How was the Billy Talent portion?
PK: Amazing. It was us, Billy Talent and Cancer Bats so, it was three Canadian bands touring overseas, getting on great and the shows were massive. We were really well received.

ATP: What do you think of Billy Talent's stardom in Germany?
PK: We played nine dates with them in Germany and it was insane. A lot of people recognize how big they are there, but we come from Canada, where they are just as big, where you can't walk five feet in any town without hearing their name mentioned. They are really humble guys; and some of the nicest guys we've ever met.

ATP: Why did you only play three UK dates?
PK: We had this whole Billy Talent tour and were going to head home, but we thought we should at least tackle a couple of dates, because we were only a few hours away. So we decided to do three shows, before heading home for the holidays.

ATP: What have you been up to since the last UK tour with The Blackout?
PK: We came home, did some festivals, some Warped Tour dates between the US and Canada, a Canadian tour headlining with A Day To Remember, went to Alaska and did some more US dates.

ATP: What has been the best 2009 tour for Silverstein?
PK: The beginning of the year was pretty amazing because we went to South America for the first time, and in combination with that, we went from there, into Hawaii and then to Australia. So we got to go to all these exotic places and play music. That was our beginning of the year; the first show we played after we made our record, was in Columbia.

ATP: When recording the last album, 'A Shipwreck In The Sand', how did you hook up with Lights and Liam Corner, of Cancer Bats?
PK: Both local. We are all from the same music scene, live in the same city, so it's crazy. There is all this talent in our backyard but, basically, we are all friends and, when we were putting together the record, we thought there was a need for additional guests to fill out the rest of the parts; the two of them were available so it worked out great.

ATP: In the past, you toured Europe with Simple Plan, and Japan with Avril Lavigne. How was it to be on tour with those artists?
PK: It was kind of weird. With Simple Plan, we are both Canadian, so it definitely put us in the hat for that, and they are just a pop/rock band, so it wasn't that weird really. Avril is a pop star, and we are very different. The Simple Plan tour actually helped us out, as they have a lot of younger fans that are still growing up, and end up becoming fans of our band. Still to this day, I get kids coming up to me saying they saw us with Simple Plan.

ATP: What up and coming Canadian bands can you recommend?
PK: A band that I worked with, and have been on some tours with us, are: 'I Am Committing A Sin', which sound like a mix of At The Drive In/Mars Volta kind of stuff. They're a really good band.

ATP: Have you been working on any new material?
PK: Yeah, we have been fiddling around with some stuff and are pretty inspired to write, which is cool. We are going to be taking some time to do that.

ATP: Any demos done yet?
PK: No demos, but we definitely have song ideas which are coming together?

ATP: When are you coming back to the UK for a full run?
PK: I'd like to come back by the summer, but we'll see. I'd like to come back with another set up to promote. We'll see how it all fits together.

ATP: What is planned for 2010?
PK: We are taking a few months off to focus on some new stuff for the band. In the spring though, we'll be on a US tour.

'A Shipwreck In The Sand' is out now on Victory Records.

- Jon Ableson

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