DR: Yo man, what’s up? What are you up to right now?
I’m good. I just got back from the studio… We are working on a few new songs for some upcoming releases. We just tracked the drums, so we will head back to the studio later in the week and start recording guitars and bass.
Other than that I am just absorbing the terrible news from the weekend. I’m sure you have all heard the news about the Alt-Right / White Supremacist rally that was held in Charlotsville over the weekend. It’s crazy to think that in 2017 people are still being judged by the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, or their religious beliefs… No Tolerance for Ignorance!
DR: When did you guys decide to get together?
I started this band with our drummer Adam about a year ago. I had a bunch of songs that I had written that didn’t really fit for my other bands, and I got tired of looking for a singer. So in the spirit of the first Judge 7”, just Adam and I recorded the first batch of songs… He played drums, and I recorded the guitars, bass, and vocals. We actually recorded 6 songs in the sessions from the demo, so we are working on releasing a 7” with all 6 songs.
Once the recording was finished, I started working on putting a lineup together. The first person I reached out to was Dennis… We have known each other for years, and I’m a fan of all of the bands that he has played in… He brought in John (Bass), and John brought Devin in on second guitar.
Everyone in the band has been in other bands before, but we really wanted the music to speak for itself instead of trying to use our former bands to market Berthold City…
DR: How would you describe your style?
Berthold City is a Straight Edge hardcore band. We aren’t trying to reinvent the wheel… We are influenced by classic straight edge hardcore bands… Bands like Youth of Today, Bold, SSD, DYS, Judge, Brotherhood, Insted, Uniform Choice, and more.
That being said, we have been drawing a lot of comparisons to some of the Youth Crew revival bands from the late 90’s. Bands like Carry On and In My Eyes… I think that has to do with the fact that we are influenced by the same bands as those bands were, and we have a similar “modern” production style.
DR: Tell us about the name?
Names are a really hard thing… We wanted something that sounded like a hardcore band without it being too obvious or generic.
Berthold City is actually the name of the font that is used by bands like SSD and Chain of Strength among many others. It’s basically THE hardcore font!
I think it’s a cool name and a bit different.
DR: It’s refreshing to see new Straight Edge Hardcore bands coming out, was this something that was on the cards for a while?
To be honest, I just wanted to start a band with a message. I feel like the message has been lost for a lot of bands these days… I want to focus on the lyrics and do what I can do to make a small positive change in the world. Straight Edge changed my life, especially as a young kid… I’m hoping to keep that tradition alive and inspire a new generation.
DR: What’s your main motivation for starting an Edge band?
I feel like Straight Edge has been a bit under represented in that last few years… There was a point in the 90’s where you would go to a show and more than half the crowd had X’s on their hands. Now it is something that you rarely see, and if you do it is in such a small number.
DR: And which bands inspire you the most?
Aside from the bands I already listed above, I am inspired by a lot of newer bands that are keeping the tradition of hardcore alive. I’ve gotten so burnt out on all the super heavy bands with a ton of breakdowns and overly violent dancing… I like music that inspires circle pits, stage dives, and sing-alongs… These were my favorite things about hardcore when I first started going to shows, and I’m inspired by bands that can get a wild reaction without a big empty hole in front of the crowd with a few people punching and kicking each other.
Bands like Protester, Violent Reaction, Down to Nothing, Break Away, Fury, Stand Off, Discrepancy, Abuse of Power, Freedom, Praise, Give, and many more.
DR: The demo is amazing how long did it take you to get it all locked down?
We finished the music in just a few days. I think we spent a day on drums and another day on bass and guitar. This was my first time singing in a band, so I spent a lot of time working on the lyrics and the vocals. I would go in a sing one song per day, and then we went back and fixed a few lines at the end and then did back up vocals.
The demo was recorded by Aaron Jamili (Alpha Omega) at his studio in Santa Clarita and then mastered by the one and only Don Fury!
If any bands are looking to record I would definitely recommend working with Aaron, so hit him up (www.aaronjamili.com)!
DR: How’s it looking on the show front? Do you have much in the pipeline?
We are in the process of booking shows now! We have a show booked in October at Programme in Fullerton with Drug Control, Decline, and Dear Furious.
Now that the demo is out we are working to play as much as we can, so we should have some other shows in the works!
DR: Any last words?
Thanks for the support! Be sure to check out our demo at BertholdcityHC.bandcamp.com, and look for a 6 song 7” in the next few months, as well as a song on an upcoming comp with World Be Free, Zero Tolerance, and a few others!
Feel free to get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org