We Talked to Pallbearer about Saint Vitus Bar and New Material

Pallbearer are always interesting to interview, and this time was no exception. Sitting in the basement of the infamous Saint Vitus Bar, chugging beers and shooting the shit is always fun, especially with good people. And if nothing else, Pallbearer are good people.That’s why I was thrilled they decided to talk about Saint Vitus Bar, their upcoming album and much more.

Obviously you’ve been at St Vitus a lot over the years, and this is a special night for this bar – what is it like to be a part of that celebration?

Brett (B): It’s a great honor. It’s obviously one of the best, if not the best metal clubs in the US. We love the whole staff and everyone who works at the bar. It’s like coming home.

Devin (D): They gave us a shot early on. It was really cool to fly out the first time right after the album came out. It was in late 2012. We came up here right after it was released. So to be a little ass band from Little Rock to be flown out was cool and it’s cool to be back. When we’re in town and not even playing here we try to stop by no matter what because we dig the staff.

You guys played some new shit during soundcheck – tell me about that…

B: There’s no name for it.

D: We have funny working titles to communicate names but no actual name. It’s still in the conceptual development phase.

Something I don’t fully understand given that your bassist lives in Brooklyn is how do you write?

D: Apart, worlds apart! (Laughter) Joe holds it down up here and works on a lot of material and every once in a while he will fly down. We’re alwas talking. It’s so easy to write collectively with the internet.

B: The three of us work on shit then Joe comes down and shows us his stuff and arranges with us. We always arrange as a group.

D: Everyone is in the process of every song. It’s just the way that we have to work.

You were telling me there is going to be a lot more guitar harmonies on this record…

B: There’s going to be a lot more guitar in general.

D: It’s a lot more technically challenging to play. I think it’s the most complex record we have ever written by a lot. We don’t want to get bored.

B: We really pushed ourselves on the second album and we are pushing ourselves for this one too. We’ve had some weirder proggier parts that came up and some new shit. That song we played upstairs in soundcheck was about as fast as it gets and we don’t have anything else in our catalog as fast as that.

At one point you said to me that you consider yourselves a prog band as much as you consider yourselves a doom band. Are you heading in a more prog direction in general?

B: I think it might just be that one song. It remains doomy. Overall it might be a bit more proggy but it still has that Pallbearer signature vibe and it’s still very melodic.

What is it like to be at a level where you can call a lot of shots in terms of running shows?

B: Well it’s really been five years of non stop touring. Linearly we haven’t been around that long but we have done a shitload of touring.

D: For a while we were touring as much as any metal band. A lot of it is just paying your dues for a while and if you are consistent then you start to get a chance to have a say in your presentation.

Now that you have a say, is there anywhere you want to move that?

D: Having a production budget would be cool. It would be cool to have a stage show. Pyrotechnics would rule…

Where would pyrotechnics fit into the show?

B: It would be like WASP – exploding codpieces!

D: In all honesty it would probably be more like projection type shit. Stuff like Pink Floyd or Yes.

Another thing I wanted to circle back too… you once talked to me, Devin, about how you want to be a “Badass motherfucker” in terms of being a musician. What steps have you made towards that?

D: All the wrong ones! I was probably really drunk when I said that! I don’t think anyone is going to say they want to be a weakass bitch musician. I practice every day though and learn a lot of jazz and theory. There will always be people who are way better than you but it’s more about developing your own personal thing. Guys like Santana and Slash aren’t technically amazing but they have their own sound. It’s amazing. I would like to develop a signature sound.

You don’t feel like you’ve already done that?

B: It could always go deeper though!

D: We want to be weirder in the confines of what we’re doing.

B: The new material is an extension of that philosophy. It’s more complex and more melodic and there’s more colors. Our first album is mostly one tempo and a lot of the same vibe. The second album branches out a little more. What we have for the third album is even more of that. More tempo changes and smoother transitions. The songs flow more naturally rather than having distinct changes. There are some jarring moments but it’s constantly evolving.

When did you start studying jazz?

D: I’ve always been interested in it. I played in high school but it’s always been over my head. It’s nice to reach out though. It’s obtainable. What’s beautiful about it is that it can be so many things. Ultimately it’s the theory and mastering the fretboard so you have complete control which, for me, would be the ultimate goal.

B: For me playing jazz is just playing the wrong notes! (Laughter)


Stay up to date with Pallbearer on Facebook and stream the EP on Bandcamp. Pallbearer are just starting a summer tour with Baroness and just released an EP called Fear And Fury. Catch them at a venue near you.

08/12 – Washington, D.C. @ The Howard Theater
08/13 – Northampton, Mass. @ Pearl Street Ballroom
08/14 – New York, N.Y. @ Webster Hall
08/16 – Providence, R.I. @ Fete Ballroom
08/17 – Buffalo, N.Y. @ Waiting Room
08/19 – Cleveland, Ohio @ House of Blues
08/20 – Detroit, Mich. @ St. Andrew’s Hall
08/21 – Chicago, Ill. @ The Metro
08/23 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ The Varsity Theatre
08/24 – Lawrence, Kan. @ The Granada Theatre
08/26 – Albuquerque, N.M. @ Sunshine Theatre
08/27 – Phoenix, Ariz. @ Club Crescent
08/28 – Las Vegas, Nev. @ Psycho Las Vegas
08/30 – San Diego, Calif. @ The Observatory Northpark
08/31 – Tucson, Ariz. @ The Rock
09/02 – Dallas, Texas @ Granada Theatre
09/03 – Memphis, Tenn. @ New Daisy Theatre
09/04 – Baton Rouge, La. @ The Varsity Theatre
09/06 – Orlando, Fla. @ The Beachum Theater
09/07 – Tampa, Fla. @ State Theater

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Published on: August 12, 2016

Filled Under: Interviews, Metal

Views: 1001

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  • Dubbbz

    Exploding codpieces?


    • Stanley

      That’s a young Till. He’d need a codpiece 4 times that size these days. This picture did make me go and watch this video again for the millionth time. Thank you.


      • Dubbbz

        At least we’ll always have each other, Stan.

        • Stanley

          Yup. We can circle jerk ourselves into oblivion.

      • Colleenthurley

        <<fb. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★::::::!il250r:….,…….

      • Elizabethjbly3

        <<fb. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★::::::!il617r:….,……..

  • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

    Never really go past the first album with these guys.

  • Man, how I do remember the hype storm that happened when their first album came out a few years back. That album was inescapable.

    • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

      They got a LOT of hype!

      • I’m pretty sure I bought the album too. I think I listened to it once, its been shelved ever since.

        • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

          I actually played the shit out of it. Liked it more than I thought I would, but it’s seemed to fizzle.

          • I guess I should revisit it, I probably won’t though. Too much other shit that I know I’ll like better.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Yup, pretty much. And if we’re talking rad doom, I still need this release.

          • This is an album I have yet to listen to in full. Finally made it through that new Graves at Sea though. That album was way too long by the way.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Doom like that gets that way. It’s really stupid after a while, once you get past 7 minutes and only played two decent riffs it can get comical.

          • Dagon

            One of their guitarists is in Unrest. I like the contrast.

          • Grind doom.

          • Dagon

            Make it a thing

          • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

            Bassist and guitarist are both in Unrest and TrenchRot.

          • Dubbbz

            This album was pretty rad.

          • Señor Jefe El Rosa

            This album is perfect.

        • Abradolf Lincler

          Yeah I never understood that hype train

  • Good review as usual, señor Bacon. I’m intrigued with the covers they made for this new EP. I tried with their second album and I got why it got praised, but it didn’t clicked that much with me. I’m also interested of them using more melodies, though 🙂

    • Dagon

      They never clicked with me for some reason. Seems like all the elements are there but it just never hits.

      • Yup. But, right now I’m listening this T0N cover of “Love You to Death” and I’m digging their atmosphere covering the song.

        I may give them another shot, doombro 🙂

  • Joaquin Stick

    Hmm. Methinks I’ll actually like this new proggier direction they say they are striving for. Might make things interesting (because they haven’t really been [for me]). Wish I could see them with Baroness though.

  • Dagon

    I’m not a musician, so I’ve always paid more attention to the sound than the actual complexity of what’s being played. I get what he means when he says that Slash and Santana have signature sounds.

    My non-musicianship is probably why I never understood the appeal of dudes like Steve Vai or Joe Satriani. I just think it’s extremely boring.

    • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

      Feel vs. wanking.

      • Dagon

        Yes. I wank myself, fool.

        *Turns gun sideways*

      • Elegant Gazing Globe


        • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

          Love Yngwie, no fucks.

        • Looks like he’s feeling the wank.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Bro, he’s wanking the feel, clearly.

          • Óðinn

            “Wanking the feel”. It’s like Gleaming the Cube.


          • Señor Jefe El Rosa

            Or gazing the globe.

          • Óðinn


          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Just watched this a couple months ago.

          • Óðinn

            Haha. Awesome. Haven’t seen it in years, but I imagine it’s still cheesy in a 1980s kind of way.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Pretty much!

          • Óðinn

            Otherwise, what’s the point?

      • BobLoblaw

        Having the “feels” in music defined is make a face like you’re smelling a fart and dramatically bend a note.

        • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

          This is true.

        • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

          Third one = John Mayer?!?!?

          • BobLoblaw

            Yep, and hes down to buttchug some jenkem.

          • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

            Upvote simply for that response. I know what I’m doing this Saturday! Pray for my booty hole.

          • BobLoblaw

            I will my mulatto.

          • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

            I’m half black and half white? News to me!

          • BobLoblaw

            Youre being so narcoleptic right now.

          • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

            Sorry, I’ve been busy regurgitating the nefarious colonoscopy of the whole situation.


    • You functional ears are why you never saw the appeal of Vai or Satriani

    • Eliza

      I can play guitar and I still don’t get the appeal of Steve Vai and Joe Satriani. They do play very well, I can’t deny that, but nothing that I’ve heard from them stuck with me.

      • Abradolf Lincler

        inb4 Jeff Loomis

      • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

        My dad’s a huge fan of Satriani and Vai, but we’ve both agreed that it comes in doses with both of them. “Surfing With The Alien” is the only Satriani album that stuck with me, and a few Vai songs here and there.

        On another note, I cannot for the life of me get why Vai even appeared on the new M83, since he barely played anything.


        • Eliza

          This song is so catchy.

          • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

            Vai’s riff doesn’t come until the end, which is what made me scratch my head.
            The new M83 is way wayyyyyyyyyyy different from their other stuff. More fun, but I wanted another Hurry Up We’re Dreaming. The new one sounds more like Alphaville or Modern Talking.

  • RustyShackleford

    Great stuff! I’ve never been much of a doomy dude but these guys seem cool. Also love Saint Vitus. Great venue that has, for me at least, always had good sound and a great vibe. Last time I was there they were playing Nosferatu on a projector in the background and we were having way too many beers/Jack & Coke like losers. Fun time! Yep!

  • Eliza

    These guys are right up my alley, I should give then a listen. Fun interview too.

  • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

    Pallbearer have steadily been going downwards for me. Fear & Fury’s title track was good, but the whole ordeal feels like a filler release.

    Thanks for the interview though, one can always dream that they’ll get better (’cause there’s potential), and a proggier direction certainly intrigues me.

  • PostBlackenedWhaleGaze

    I think the Type O cover is great. One of my favorite bands (Type O), and they did a good job with it.

  • Brock Lesner’s Oily Wonderbra

    Kickass article as usual, Mr. Bacon! Jamming some of their stuff in the post, and has a blues-rock, kinda doomy feel to it, with a refreshingly garagey sound. Kinda like a much slower Kyuss, a bit.

  • megachiles

    That Type O cover is making me real turgid. Great interview!

    These guys, Skeletonwitch, Trash Talk, and Power Trip were playing at one of the first metal show I drug my spousal unit to (SXSW 2013 I think?). We weren’t super stoked with their set because it was 2warm4doom outdoors and the venue sound was meh 🙁

    • Thrasher Death Match?

      • megachiles

        That or the Pitchfork showcase. We got so many coozies from Death Match that year.

        They didn’t have either this year. I was pretty bummed.

  • Last Bacon article, I’m going to slay him like the poser he is when he hits Charlotte <3

    • Matt Bacon


  • Waynecro

    Great interview! Thanks very much!