Breaking Through The Joe Foster Interview- Part One Blood Days

By Ed

unnamedUnity are a legendary OC Straight Edge Hardcore band as well as being the first band to release anything on Wishing Well Records and being very influential in the Hardcore Scene. It goes without saying that Joe Foster himself has played in some very important bands and now has a band Blood Days with some OG HC top brass; members of No For An Answer, Unity, Ignite and Carry Nation, just to name a few. So when Joe emailed me and said he’d like to do something I jumped at the chance.

DR: Hi Joe how’s things? Where are you based right now?

Hi Ed, still in OC man.

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DR: First of all, why did you decide to name the band after the Unity record?

Everyone thought I named Ignite after the Unity song Blood Days. I actually didn’t. I was with Joe Nelson and we were just driving somewhere and the name just popped in my head and I looked at him and said the band is called Ignite. That was it. Later on people started thinking I took it from Unity. I then figured ok, (aside from Speak 714), what are the next lines in that song. Ie: the Killing Flame, Blood Days, so hence those bands. This time though with our bass player John Lorey being the original bass player from Unity, it has alot more meaning to me. Especially since he was my best friend in high school and we had lost touch over the years. I am so happy to be playing with again.

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DR: Did you plan on really starting something fresh with Blood Days or where you after maybe bringing something back? Like more of a reforming type thing?

I had zero interest in reforming anything. I just love writing music and still felt I had not wrote my definitive evolution of music yet. I had a hard time for years getting the right guys together. Me and John have been at this for three years and probably have written over a hundred songs in various lineups of Blood Days. I was so lucky to get Gavin and Casey who were at the same place in music I was, wanting to see what all the years of playing would produce now. Later on we got Jae Hansel and that was a total blessing to. I have always been a big fan of his voice and his passion for hardcore and thrilled he to shared the same vision of growing creatively with us.

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DR: When did you get really serious with getting the band started?

Three maybe even four years ago. I missed playing so much and had the opportunity to play with John again. I has been a long long long hard road member wise for sure.

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DR: You are quite a mellow sounding Hardcore band… did you all know you wanted to go in this direction from the start?

Lol, ya I think we ended up with more valleys than peaks on “Last Day on Earth” but overall we didn’t have a certain premeditated sound in mind. I think we trust each other enough to be able to just get in a room and go. Thats what I wanted anyway, to see how all the parts would fit and what it would bring. I have always been a big fan of melodic hardcore and have this eternal quest for the finding the perfect balance of speed, temp flux’s, peaks and valleys, melody etc in my music. I think this band will finally get me closest to that quest.

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DR: Has there already been a bit of a shift around in the line up?

Ya, like I said, 3-4 years of looking for the right fit. At one point we had a girl drummer to, she was pretty cool but had to move away. Eventually and thankfully Casey, Jae and Gavin were into it. I should of just called them from the start, would of saved a lot of time and misery..lol

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DR: I’d never heard of Irish Voodoo Records before, what’s their vibe?Is it a new label?

They have a lot of releases out  but to be honest, I had never heard of them either until our friends band Done Dying signed to them. We later met the owner Joey who has been in the hardcore scene forever and it was just a good fit. They are really awesome and easy to work with. They just signed a SE band ZERO ONE EIGHT from Naples Italy to that are really amazing.

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DR: How did you approach the writing of songs for Blood Days?

We all just kinda had an Embrace, Rites of Spring mentality going in but not knowing what would turn out. Basically we just come up with a part we like and work around it.

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DR: What would you say the biggest influences are running through the band?

Mostly just looking for another dimension in our writing and not sounding like all the other bands we have done. I think to some degree we will no matter what but still trying to find different ways of playing our style of hardcore is really important to us.

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DR: And how would you describe your own style of guitar playing?

Um, follow the dot’s basically, lol.  I like to start with a skeleton structure and then add the other parts. I like to look for counter melodies so things sound more layered. In general though, I should be a lot better by now than I am. Gavin has really stepped up skill wise over the last year with intricate picking etc and it’s been fun to watch and hear.

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DR: Most of you in Blood Days have been in some pretty serious bands with No For An Answer out numbering other bands in terms of ex members. You guys must work really well together and share some epic memories.

I think it’s equal with Ignite members as Gavin was in the earliest form of Ignite when Joe Nelson sang. But ya, we are all really comfortable around each other and have experienced so many things together over the years that it just works.

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DR: How far do you want to go with Blood Days?

My initial goal was a 7″, ep and full length. I would really like to tour as much as possible and write music with these guys for as long as we can. 5 more years wold be great.

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