Interview: Corey Beaulieu (Trivium)

In December 2011, an interview was conducted with Trivium guitarist Corey Beaulieu for student publication Audio Addict. Since the feature was heavily cut down (as Audio Addict were curiously more interested in the ‘dinky webzine’ bit than the music, too appear grittier and more dangerous, especially odd considering how it very much fell into the ‘dinky webzine’ category) and it is no longer available on the magazine’s website in either form, at long last, this is the original extended feature. Enjoy.

NOTE: The future album discussed in the interview was 2013’s Vengeance Falls. Do you think that Corey’s description, given almost two years in advance, is accurate? Comment below.

TRIVIUM’S NEW WAVELENGTH: Trivium prepare to unleash new sound at Download 2012

Everyone has heard sinister tales of heavy metal musicians: a punch-up here, an arrest there, with a drug overdose thrown in for good measure. Therefore, when meeting a metal band face-to-face, with such rumours lurking, should I cower as I am led to their dressing room?

“Matt is a real food guru. He likes to try all sorts of food.”

Perhaps not. Corey Beaulieu is lead guitarist of Florida metal foursome Trivium, who are headlining Metal Hammer’s Defenders of the Faith III tour, which kicked off at the Southampton Guildhall. I caught up with Corey backstage before the show began.

Corey explains the whole procedure that the band goes through when an album is released, as they go through the laborious and tiresome stage of promoting their new material. More precisely the interviewers who he has to face, which admittedly worries me a little. “We get a lot of the same questions. The most annoying is when you get a lot of young kids that have their own dinky webzine or something that I’ve never heard of. They get the press to get a free ticket to the show.” He puts on a helium-tainted voice to quote his interviewers, though I can’t for the life of me figure exactly what accent he is trying to reenact. Luckily I’m pretty sure it’s not mine.  “They’re like “how long has your band been going” or “what does your name mean” or just “can you tell us about your band”. Lots of stuff that you can go on our website and find on our bio. You can go there and get all this information without wasting my time.”

Beneath them on the bill tonight are Swedish metal veterans In Flames, leaving Trivium in a dream position – above one of their biggest influences. Corey says that their first tour with them is the best European tour that we’ve ever done, with lead vocalist Matt Heafy going as far as to claim that with In Flames, Trivium wouldn’t exist. Corey claims “Before Matt got into In Flames, we were an old school Metallica-style thrash metal band. There were no guitar harmonies or anything like that that we do now. But after he got into them, we wanted to do things like dual guitars and it got him into the whole screaming thing.”

Corey makes a point of just how devoted and passionate they are towards their art, as they taking a liking to performing live. Despite their shows forever growing, as they break their record for their biggest UK shows on this tour, the band have no intention of abandoning tiny shows. “We played Birmingham Asylum and it was limited to like 300 people and everyone was right on the stage. Everyone at the end of the show got on the stage.”

The suggestion that each show could be ‘just another show’ as they perform so many (they will have performed 75 shows this year by the end of the tour) couldn’t be more wrong. Not even close, as Corey makes a point of how they have no disregard for their art, and how a metal band’s work is never finished. It has been just four months since the release of their latest album, yet the band has their sights set way, way into the future.  While it’s blindingly obvious as we’re both flopped on a sofa, he clarifies that he is relaxed as the performance approaches. “We’ve never gotten nervous or anything before shows. Whether it’s a couple of hundred or sixty-thousand, we kind of approach it in the same way. We just go up and do our thing.”

“We’re scheduling almost a year in advance. We’ve already been talking about doing our next album. We always write on tour so we’ve already got a bunch of stuff that we’re writing. We always kind of prepare because when we get off tour we don’t wanna have to start writing because that will just add more time, and we won’t be out there in the scene.”

Their last two albums differ in that 2008’s Shogun was made of tracks of epic proportions, with the title track clocking in at a truly ridiculous twelve minutes, whereas this year’s effort In Waves is far more concise. While it might be a long way off, Corey and co. seem to know exactly where the process is headed, and what they want of the new album. Corey spills the beans on what they have in mind for their next record. “The next record will have more variation. People do love Shogun for its seven-string stuff… it made everything a bit darker. We didn’t use any on the last record. I think it’ll be a mixture of both worlds, to bridge the gap. The next one will have new twists and turns that no one’s heard us do yet”.

Excited yet? You had better get comfortable as this could take a while.

Trivium’s latest album In Waves is available now.

 

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