Comeback Kid's influential album, Wake The Dead, turns 10 this year. We have commentary on the album from Andrew Neufeld himself. Enjoy the read and let us know your thoughts on Wake The Dead ten years later.
How did you feel when the album came out?
A: At the time it felt very good. We were on tour the US when the record actually got released w/ Bane I believe. Apparently it was doing really well off the hop and shows were definitely picking up for us.
Where do you think the album fits in the band's legacy?
A. It was no doubt an important album for us. Wake The Dead the most recognizable song we have ever released. We finish our set with it 99% of the time, and we still play a good chunk of songs from that album. I think we owe a lot of our accomplishments to that album in general. Right place at the right time. Bill Stevensen and Jason Livermore were the right producers for the album. Such a step up sonically from Turn It Around our first album and they really helped us get the sound that popped out.
How the band approach writing?
A. Jeremy and I would write the riffs and music before. We would bring it to Kyle our drummer at the time and get the drums down with the songs. We didnt change any song structures in the studio actually on that one. Of course lyrics came last. Scott and I would work on lyrics and phrasing pretty much in the studio each night before we would track the next day. It was all very… work well under pressure type thing.
What inspired the lyrics?
A. Friends and relationships and trying to find where we fit in our early 20s.
What were your hopes and expectations for Wake The Dead during the writing and recording process?
A. We were all really thirsty. The band was busy and touring with bands that we really liked and were excited about it for sure. We just wanted to get the songs heard really because it sounded fresh to us.
When you were in the studio, how was the morale of the band?
A. It was good. I do remember we paid for the recording ourselves because we hadn't signed any record deals yet. A couple were all on the table and it was definitely a debate about signing to Victory or not. Some bicker back and forth about that I remember. Pretty funny to think about. I remember we actually did sign that contract in the studio and Scott definitely signed it and threw the pen upset haha.
When was the last time you listened to the record? Are there memories and emotions that come back?
A. I haven't listened to it in a while. Sometimes Wake The Dead comes on in euro alternative rock parties.
What do you remember most about making the album?
A. The Blasting Room! What a studio. I can't say enough good things about Bill and Jason. We weren't originally supposed to record the album with them. We were going to do it with Jim Siegal from the Outpost ( blood for blood, AN, dropkick, etc ) studio in Boston and we had spoken with Tim from American Nightmare to "produce" the album. I forgot how that all went down w. Tim. But we were suppose to do it at the Outpost for sure.
Around the planning stages we went on tour with Only Crime which Bill Stevensen was playing drums in. We must have caught his ear because he approached us about recording. He said he would give us a great deal and we could bang it out in 2 weeks ( they run 2 studios at the same time ). We were reluctant because we were pretty much confirmed at this other place and The Blasting Room was more known for the punk rock sound and we weren't sure how he would work with a hardcore band. He made me a mix cd of some tracks he's worked on and actually sold us on it with that. Also, it was quite the flattery having a legend arguably in some of the most important punk / hc bands really wanting to work with you.
What sort of place was your life in when the album came out?
A. Young, single, and just wanting to travel and see the play all over the world.
Did you ever expect the album to have the influence it did?
A. No, but I did think that we had something fresh at the time. We were bringing together hardcore and the skate punk style we grew up listening to together. The ideas were flowing. A couple duds on that record for sure but it did have a spark to it.
Do you remember what you were listening to at the time?
A. Lots of music. I think I was into Sigur Ros then and Tatu. Or Merauder...
Is there anything about the album you'd change?
A. I think we could have spent more time on a few songs to make them better but I think there are a lot of stand out tracks on WTD and it was all pretty exciting, at least for me. I'm proud of the record.