Exit Empire is a three-piece band currently based in the Czech Republic founded in 2016 by two brothers and their best friend.
Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Rafael Eimut - me, the frontman and the producer.
Timmy Ruzicka - the guitarist and the producer
Premysl Ruzicka, Jr. - the drummer
Also, Timmy and Premek are brothers and they are my best friends. We are basically a family.
For starters, what bands were you guys a part of prior to Exit Empire? How long has the band been around?
With Timmy and Premek, we’ve had a previous band as a part of the Czech local scene for several years.
During those years our passion for the band grew more and more. And mainly, we learned the most important lesson: Nobody cares about what you’re doing until you prove them you mean it. There is no magic pill, there is no manager and no producer who will take our band and make it huge overnight.
So we’ve quit colleges, locked ourselves in our bedrooms and started to learn audio & video production. This gave birth to Exit Empire two years ago.
And what’s interesting is that we are truly independent – we not only do our music, audio production, video production, but even online presentation and booking all by ourselves. It’s not like we don’t want or appreciate help, on the contrary – it’s just we want to be in control of the final product.
What’s the origin of that name and have you changed the band’s name before?
Empire, because we love grandiosity and more than a band we wanted to build a community. Exit, because every great life has had in it a great renunciation.
In other words, we realized that the path we were going before, the more lined up, corporate path, wasn’t right for us. So instead, we have started to work hard on the life we have always wanted and on chasing our dreams.
Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs and do you think these topics will change over time?
We all do during our songwriting sessions. That means we meet up in the studio for the whole day and start asking each other questions. What is the story of this song? What are the emotions? Then we chat for a while, share our personal experiences relating to the topic and go very deep with it. The honesty is the key ingredient for us. After that we grab our instruments and start composing.
Thus said, our songs tell personal stories through lyrics based on everyday struggles we all experience.
Music has always helped us in our lives. Now we want to give it back. Therefore, giving people strength to fight for their dreams is the main theme. We will always encourage people to do this.
What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
It varies a lot to be honest. We all get inspiration from various genres. I love The Weeknd for example and electronic music, Deadmau5. On the other hand we all dig Highly Suspect, Royal Blood and I need to mention a new band we fell in love with, MISSIO.
So the future will be very new and exciting.
Was there a particular band/artist or concert that inspired you to start a band?
I remember when I was a small kid, I saw the Queen of the Damned movie. It has a great soundtrack with many amazing artists including Jonathan Davis and Chester Bennington (RIP, legend). There was this frontman, a vampire called Lestat, rocking the stage. I was immediately like, this is gonna be me when I grow up. So here I am and because of my pale skin, some people even compare me to a vampire. (laughter)
But our background differs. For Premek it was Sum41 that woke his desire to play drums. Timmy on the other hand loves Arctic Monkeys and grew up on the underground Czech rappers DeFuckTo. These guys convinced him that lyrics can be an art form as he always says.
However, in the end we have one band in common, Linkin Park.
What do you do to prepare for a show? Any flexing, exercises, ect ...
Sure, do you remember the move you hated the most during gymnastics at the third grade, jumping jacks? So yes and all kinds of cardio exercises, for me including voice warm ups, to get our bodies ready.
We love epicness. Being able to move a lot and give everything out on the stage. People tell us “Wow, you were so quiet backstage... But the show was so vivid!”
And there is nothing worse than to wake up with a stiff neck.
What has been the biggest highlight of the band’s career so far?
Definitely a Dubai show. It was emotionally the strongest show so far. If you wonder why, I have written a blog post about it and Timmy made a vlog, you can watch it here:
But there are other two highlights worth mentioning. Recently we’ve been headlining an amazing festival Rocanotherworld in Romania and will headline Woodstock Ukraine August 9th. See you there!
If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
Basically anyone I mentioned as our influences would be so unbelievable.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
July 30, 2018, we are just releasing three music videos. With Forging My Own Crown, we wanted to express the duality of emotions you experience when creating something. Whether it's art, music or starting a business. You must be strong to follow your passion and vision, but at the same time, you are extremely vulnerable and basically hard to live with.
So we wanted to give something back to our friends and fans who support us in our own journey of creating music. We invited them to a party in our rehearsal room, grabbed a camera and just shot the whole thing unscripted. The result is a very authentic video with a positive vibe, the one we've been gaining strength from because of these people. Now we hope it will give strength back to our listeners and viewers.
The other two videos are acoustic versions of our songs, both are from the Deluxe Edition of our album that’s out now.
Lastly, see you in Los Angeles - we’ll be there this October, so contact us to set up a friendly meeting.