Meet As Hell Retreats

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Meet Jackson & Taylor from As Hell Retreats

So how long have you guys been playing together? How did you guys meet?
We’ve been together for about 5 years now. The original line-up we had in the beginning met because of skateboarding and we got bored and played music. After so many years and changes, we have all met through the music scene with most of us being in different bands before and stuff.

Who are some of your musical and non-musical influences?
Umm…a lot of musical influence are like Meshuggah, The Black Dahlia Murder, or just any emotional mood we are in. Lyrically, I (Jackson) just get influences from what’s going on in the world. But if I had to pick a band…it would probably be around the line of Thrice. Weird, I know.

So your Strike First debut album sounds like a beast. Do you have any memorable moments during the recording process?
Thank you for that, dude! Haha. As far as recording the record, most of our fun times were summed up in our Studio Vlogs that are on the MySpace. We never had a memorable moment. Recording in itself was just memorable enough.

You guys have a lot of “Righteous Anger” coming through in your lyrics. Where does that come from? Anything specific?
Most of the lyric ideas on that record come from what I’ve seen go on around in Christianity. All the pride, greed, corruption, ignorance, and lust for power have gotten to the point where I can’t let it sit like this anymore. Letting Religion or Politics getting in the way of our lives just isn’t cutting it anymore. So, with this band, I try to share my thoughts with you all to see what I see.

What sealed the deal for you guys to sign to Strike First?
Well…we’ve always looked up to this label because it has had so many great bands. One of them being Alove for Enemies, who was one of my favorite bands back in the day. What sealed the deal though was that no other label was offering us anything. They offered, we were blown away, and we signed as soon as possible to be apart of something awesome. We are stoked for what they have in the future for us and we are stoked to be working with them.

What are some of your favorite songs off Revival that you enjoy the most playing live?
Hands down, Poor God. That song is the latest song in our set list. That song was written with so much passion and rage that we show that passion and rage on stage.

What is the best show you guys have played and what made it the best?
That is a tough question for us. It’s a 3-way tie with a local show on Halloween ’09 at Rocketown, our show in Tampa, FL during our tour with The Gun Show, or West Palm Beach, FL that was also on tour w/ The Gun Show. Halloween was one of the best because it was a hometown show. It ruled. The two florida shows were amazing because it was our first time playing South, but we felt like we were home with how the crowd participated in everything. It was a shocker, but a great experience.

What makes As Hell Retreats different or unique in an over saturated genre?
This is also a tough question. I would say what really stands out is how much positive attitude we have in this genre that is supposed to be negative or violent. We always try to spread hope and love to those who search for it, no matter what they believe in. We want people to know that no matter what positivity is out there.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you guys on stage, if any?
Can’t think of much, but there is one time where I have fallen off the stage doing something stupid while I was screaming. I slipped off this monitor and then next thing I know I’m on my face on the venue floor. Bad moment.

Everyone has something embarrassing on their iPod/mp3 player. Care to tell us yours or rat on another band member?
Trent- Katy Perry, Ke$ha, all things “Nu-metal”.
Jackson- Ke$ha, Demi Lovato, Linkin Park.
Blake- System of a Down, Pretty much all things “Nu-metal”.
Tyler- Backstreet Boys, 98 Degrees, and Spice Girls. 😉
Taylor- KC & Jo-Jo, Eiffel 65, Baja Men

What is currently spinning in your stereo?
First of all, since Taylor and I (Jackson) are doing this interview, we will tell you what’s in our stereos.

Taylor- A mix CD with Rise Against’s “Revolution Per Minute” and The Misfits’ “Static Age”
Jackson- back and forth with A Hope For Home’s “Realis” and Continuance’s “Carry Ourselves”.

What do you guys do when you are not on tour?
Have nights on friends’ porches with some pizza, band practice, go to Buffalo Wild Wings, Play Ultimate Frisbee, Get things done for the band, and most of all, visit our family and friends that we normally don’t ever have time for anymore.