Trivium 2004

Another find from the archives is Dan's interview with Matt Heafy and Travis Smith.

6/13/20045 min read

Conducted 6/12/2004 by Dan Barkasi

Myself and my friend John got to hang out with and interview Trivium. These thrashers from Florida are a band that we have a special place in our hearts for, and it's great to see them going so far. We caught up with them in Pittsburgh on their tour with the mighty Iced Earth and Beyond The Embrace. I got the honor of interviewing lead singer/guitarist Matt Heafy and drummer Travis Smith, and it was a blast. Do yourselves a favor and support these guys. Their music will blow you away.

Dan: You guys got to tour with God Forbid back in April, which was your first really big tour here in the States. Was it tough, and how much did you enjoy it?

Travis: It was awesome! We met some really good friends. The guys from God Forbid, the guys from Scars Of Tomorrow, All That Remains. They’re friends of ours now, and it was a good first tour to get our feet wet, and just get out there and do it! So, it was great for us.

Dan: How was the filming for the video for "Like Light To Flies"?

Matt: Cold! Like, negative 20 degrees. It was exhausting. Two 12 hour days. It was great, though. It was a lot of fun besides the work. It was just exhausting.

Travis: Yeah, what Matt said. It was tough, but it did help us out in the end.

Dan: How did you come up with the name Trivium, and what does it mean?

Matt: Our old lead singer came up with it, and we stole it from him. It’s Latin for three-way intersection, and Old English for the old school of learning. It’s for grammar, rhetoric, and logic.

Dan: I’d like to congratulate you on your signing with Roadrunner Records. How did this come about?

Matt: Luck, man. Total luck. Just the right people saw us playing at the right time. They also saw the video, so that did help a lot.

Travis: Yup, we’re lucky and proud to be here.

Dan: How’s work on the new album progressing?

Matt: We did tracking and some pre-production. There’s around 12 or 13 songs that we’re working on.

Dan: Do you have a title for the new album yet?

Matt: Yes, the title is going to be Ascendancy.

Dan: Any idea of when the new album will be released?

Matt: Ahh, sometime early next year. Probably January or February.

Dan: How are you enjoying this tour with Iced Earth and Beyond The Embrace?

Travis: It’s been cool. Playing with those guys is awesome. It’s fun to see them play every night. But, it can get really tiring, though, with the travel.

Matt: Yeah, the driving sucks a bit, because of all the long distances. Most of the shows have been good, though. It’s fun, and it’s great to share the stage with those guys.

Dan: What plans do you guys have for after this tour is completed?

Matt: We’ll probably get right back to work on the new album. Maybe relax a little, if we have time.

Dan: I noticed that you guys added some bonus tracks with the re-release of Ember To Inferno. Were those recorded during the same sessions you recorded Ember To Inferno, or are were they made afterwards?

Matt: They were recorded in the same session as "Like Light To The Flies." They’re titled "The Deceived" and "Blinding Tears Will Break The Skies." They also will probably be on the new album. A really good chance they both will be, but with different recordings of them.

Dan: What are some of your biggest musical influences?

Matt: Metallica, Slayer, Testament, Megadeth, In Flames, Killswitch Engage. All of those guys have been big influences on me.

Travis: Metallica, Alice In Chains, Soundgarden. Stuff like that.

Dan: How much do you enjoy life on the road?

Matt: Sometimes I love it, sometimes I hate it. Playing the shows is great, but the travel can be really tough. I'd like to be able to be able to just be able to warp to each city, and just play, because that's what I love. Playing the shows, not the travel. It’s all worth it, though.

Dan: How would you describe Trivium’s music to somebody who has never listened to it before?

Matt: Metal, pretty much!

Travis: What Matt said, just plain metal!

Dan: How long have you been playing guitar?

Matt: Lets see. About 5 years.

Dan: Wow. That’s amazing, that you’re that good in such a short time.

Matt: Thanks!

Dan: Do you enjoy touring or working in the studio more?

Travis: Touring. The studio can get so boring and stressful.

Matt: I love playing live shows. The studio is cool at times, but tough at other times.

Dan: What do you think of today’s metal scene?

Matt: It’s great! In a few years, I think it’s going to be huge again. There are so many great bands out there. Bands who will be the next Slayer, the next Pantera. Us, we’re going to be the next Metallica.

Dan: If you could tour with any band in history, who would it be?

Matt: Metallica. That would be amazing.

Travis: Same for me. Metallica.

Dan: What kind of bands have you been listening to lately?

Matt: I’ve been listening to a lot of Radiohead, Muse, Coldplay, HIM. Mostly stuff that’s completely non-Metal. laughs

Travis: Metallica, Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Nickelback. I love Nickelback.

Dan: Where do you see Trivium a few years from now?

Matt: We’re going to be the next Metallica!

Dan: If you could play a show anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Matt: I’d like to play in Iwakuni, Japan, my original hometown, and since I’m Japanese!

Dan: What do you like to do in your spare time?

Matt: What spare time? laughs I just like to relax, watch movies, watch cartoons.

Dan: What’s your opinion on the whole MP3 thing?

Matt: I like it. I mean, I used Napster a lot. Without Napster, I wouldn’t have ever heard In Flames. If I never would have heard In Flames, I wouldn’t even be here. I do think you should buy the albums, though. I download full albums a lot, but if I like it, I always go out and buy the CD.

Travis: I hate it, man. laughs I just don’t like it.

Dan: Do you guys have a specific process that you stick to when writing new songs?

Travis: Not really. We jam a lot, and that’s how we come up with a lot of songs.

Matt: Most of our songs do come from jamming them out. Sometimes I’ll start out with a riff, and I can hear the rest of the song in my head. Us jamming has made most of our songs. Jamming, some arguing, and jamming! laughs

NOTE: At this point, there was some HEAVY drum testing, and the next few questions came out just about completely inaudible. I was able to salvage the next one, but two others got totally wrecked. I'm going to try and correct this. Sorry, everybody.

Dan: How’s the crowd been reacting to you guys on this tour?

Matt: Really good! Utah was great. Oklahoma was cool, too. Norfolk, though. They screwed us with the sound, and I want them to know that.

Dan: Is there anything that you'd like to add?

Matt: Yeah! I want to introduce Mike from Monstrosity, who has been touring with us and playing bass. Mike's awesome and we're glad to have him here! Say hello, Mike!

Mike: Hey, everybody! I'm thrilled to be here, and I hope for many other times too!

Dan: Thanks for the interview, guys!

Matt: You're welcome! Thanks for the support.

Travis: Thanks!

Note: I'd like thank Trivium for being cool enough to hang out with us, Justin Archangel for being a big help and setting everything up for us, tour manager Drew Schuler for all his help! John and I both appreciate everything.