So far, 2015 has been a pretty big year for Byron Bay boys In Hearts Wake. The band recently released the second part of their double album project entitled ‘Skydancer‘, (the first part is titled ‘Earthwalker‘) which was accompanied by an online game, and a selection of music videos that were released in the build up. On top of that they have almost sold out their national ‘Skydancer‘ tour – with support from We Came As Romans, Beartooth and Storm The Sky – and are due to play Download Festival for the first time, in a couple of weeks! We managed to grab five minutes of guitarist Ben‘s time to get a few questions answered…
Broken Arrow: You seem to have a knack for getting some big name guests on your releases and Skydancer seems no different. How did you approach these artists? And were these songs written before or after you decided to approach them?
Ben: We were friends with all of the guest vocalists before they did their parts on the record so it was easy to approach them about it. They all had such unique voices and nailed the parts so we were stoked. The songs were written well before we had thought about the guest spots; we knew who would suit which parts and that’s why we did it that way.
Broken Arrow: Having recorded the songs for Skydancer at the same time as Earthwalker, at what point did you decide to release these extra songs as a new album?
Ben: We had decided that we wanted to do a double record well before even going into the studio, it was always going to happen from the beginning.
Broken Arrow: Would you consider Skydancer as a B-sides album or a 2nd part to the first album?
Ben: Skydancer is the 2nd half to the double album project and is a complete full length album on its own. The songs definitely weren’t B-sides and although recorded at the same time as Earthwalker, I feel like it is actually a step up.
Broken Arrow: Coming from Byron Bay were you initially compared to the likes of Parkway Drive or put in their shadow? If so do you feel you are now starting to leave that shadow?
Ben: People have always mentioned that we are from the same town but we’ve always done our own thing and it never felt like we were in their shadow. They are in a league of their own and have been for years so it’s hard even compare to them really.
Broken Arrow: How is the search for Caleb’s replacement going? Are there any long term plans?
Ben: We have a fill-in drummer playing for us in the foreseeable future but no long term plans as of yet. We’re in no hurry to get a full time drummer until we know that it’s going to work.
Broken Arrow: In June you are over here to play Download festival for the first time, how excited are you?
Ben: It’s a festival that all of us have wanted to play since we were young. I remember seeing photos of bands playing there and just couldn’t believe how big it was – we cannot wait to get up on that stage and have the time of our lives!
Broken Arrow: Have other bands told you what you can expect from the UK’s biggest rock and metal festival?
Ben: We’ve heard really good things about it but nothing in any real detail which is even more exciting for us. Not knowing what to expect is what playing shows like that is all about; there’s always this build up of anticipation before getting on stage and that’s what we love.
Broken Arrow: With both Northlane and Parkway Drive performing the same day as you at Download, any chance of some live guest appearances? Hint hint….
Ben: I’d love to say it was going to happen but at this point it’s not very likely. It’s always hard at festivals because everyone’s running around trying to watch other bands or get ready for their own sets, but you never know…
Watch the video for ‘Badlands‘ below: