I’ll admit it – I’m a huge House of Heroes fan. Ever since I first saw them at Purple Door Festival a few years back I’ve been hooked. Now as I sit here and hope that someone decides to buy me a copy of the seemingly amazing Suburba (hint hint, Gotee) – I’m absolutely stoked to share with all of you the conversation I had with Tim a few weeks ago.
Their live show is extremely energetic, passionate and full of participation. Each guys’ love for music and performing is extremely evident. Their set at this year’s Purple Door festival was no exception. In fact, even their acoustic set was held in a room full of singing fans and industry reps. I’d encourage you to check out their live show if you possibly can!
As people, each member of HoH displays genuineness, authenticity and transparency. They’re constantly willing to chat with fans, smile for photos or stop for a conversation. This is just one of the traits that sets them apart from a lot of bands with such talent and drive.
During our chat, Tim shared with about the story behind Suburba, the new single, why he loves performing and what it is that has kept HoH going for so long.
What is the story behind “God Save The Foolish Kings”?
Okay, that song kind of started out as…we started writing the music and we kind fo wanted to make a fun, kind of song about the best summer of your life. But for some reason – AJ, our bass player, writes most of the lyrics for the songs – and he went on this tangent with the song and was like, “Okay, there’s these two rival gangs” and it’s basically West side Story in four minutes. There’s two rival gangs and they’re going to fight each other. But the moral of the story is like it says in the bridge “But I met God on the street tonight. He said choose your battles wisely or you’ll never find me.” So it’s kind of about not pursuing fruitless endeavors. It’s pointless. But even more than that, it’s just about being youthful and having all this angst and rage and having a positive way to channel it.
You guys have been around for a while. I remember the first time I saw you was here at Purple Door a few years ago…
Yeah, we’ve been around too long!
…how do you think your sound has evolved over the years?
That’s a, that’s a weird thing for us to objectively view. For us it’s a natural evolution. But like, the other night, I hadn’t listened to our first record in a couple years and I went back and listened to it and it was like “oh my gosh, we’re a different band!” I feel like as time went on, our thing has always been just to get better at everything we do. I want to be a better guitar player. We want to be better songwriters, better singers. Specifically, as far as vocals go, that’s progressed a ton. So we’ve got a lot of harmonies and that sort of thing. We’ve always wanted to have a grandiose kind of sound.
What is your favorite part of a live show?
Ahhhh, personally, I like the energy that you can create. I like the energy you create between members in the band. Making something that is greater than the sum of its parts. That’s what is attractive to me about being in a band – being able to combine my talents with other peoples’ and make something even bigger. But then when you combine that with a crowd that’s excited to see you and there’s a tangible energy that everyone can feel – that’s my favorite part. There’s nothing like it. It’s addicting too.
What do you see as your goal as a band? What drives you? What keeps you up on that stage?
Well, I think about that a lot. I look back on the course of our history as a band and think that we should have given up a long time ago. We should have given up when were $8,000 in debt, broke down on the side of the highway in Arizona at 3am, ya know? I think we all just really really love playing music and we love playing music with each other. But even more than that, we feel called to it. Ever since I was in high school I knew that this is what I wanted to do. My parents were always like, “Well you need to have a Plan B! You need to have a back up!” But I didn’t want a Plan B. This is what I want to do. That, coupled with a lot of people telling us we couldn’t do it. So proving them wrong was a big motivator!
In a previous interview, you mentioned that while writing The End, you simultaneously wrote a lot of songs that could be combined into a concept album. Is Suburba that concept album?
Suburba is half of that concept album. We wrote sons for an album that was a linear story, but we didn’t finish it. We were two or three songs short of finishing it. I think one of these days we’ll go in and finish the seven or eight songs that are missing, and then combine them with the five songs of The End is Not The End, that are the cornerstone of the concept album and release that as a full thing. But yeah, it was a linear story about stuff that actually happened to us or friends of ours. A little bit embellished of course. For example, there’s a murder and it got really convoluted. A murder, and the main character went on the run but his father was a cop so his father was stuck in this case of, ‘Do I uphold the law or do I let my son go cause he’s a good kid and didn’t mean to do this..?’ It’s a crazy story but, we’ll tell it one of these days.
So then what’s the concept behind Suburba?
It’s more thematical. It’s just about growing up. To us, it’s a story of starting this band when we were in high school. We didn’t have any responsibilities and we were naïve and young. Anything is possible and you’re hopeful – but then reality sets in. Things don’t go the way you want them to. You have to reconcile that. We’ve been a band for 12 years now. If you would have asked me 10 years ago what it would look like now, there’s no way I would have said this. But this is what it is and we’re all very grateful for what we have. I feel like that by the end of the album, it’s about not being cynical and jaded because of the things that happened, but still realizing that there is a purpose and that God is at the center of everything that happens. It’s more so that it’s all about the journey, and not the destination.