Steamroller

August 24th, 2005
by EvilG

Steamroller
Interviewed in Jan. 2000 By Rick

“I WANNA ROCK is the battle cry of STEAMROLLER, CRUSHING FRAGILE ROCK is our credo. What does “Crushing Fragile Rock” mean? Let me spell it out for you; there is only one true ROCK. That which stands it’s ground undeniable, a force unchallenged for its integrity. Be it in music, politics, social ideals, industry or patriotism. It’s TRUTH unwavering. Stand for what you believe in; stand up knowing who you are. If you don’t know who you are then sit down before the “ROCK” until you do. Do not meander about amongst the grains of sand spilling out onto our land as a giant mound in an attempt to mirror the fortitude and magnitude of the “ROCK”, for yours will indeed be fragile and the STEAMROLLER will crush you.”

That is a part of the Steamroller Creed. Coming from the once mighty metal breeding ground of California, Steamroller are intent on bringing their sound to the masses. 


First can you tell the readers of Metal Rules!! what is the guiding principle behind Steamroller?

BOB
To write from the heart, be ourselves, and try to progress each time and find those killer hooks that stay in your head.

MARC
Crushing Fragile Rock. Laying waste to the impure pretenders to the throne with real pure, true rock & roll!

JASON
Simply put, writing from within. Each of us lives for hard rock music to the point that doing what we do naturally from the heart pretty much directs the bands path.

 

Can you tell me what, if any, is the significance of the name Steamroller? Is your music meant to flatten people?

MARC
Flatten those who stand in the way, but if you’re with us then get on board and help us with the smashing.

 

What type of metal do you categorize yourself as for anyone who hasn’t already heard your music?

MARC
Pure.

JASON
Blues-thrash (laughing). We’re a metal band I suppose by definition but our pool of influences extends beyond previous areas of metal. This gives us our own twist on things. We have very bluesy riffs, progressive riffs, eerie melodic passages, and then all out thrash metal sections.

BOB
Steamroller metal. We feel that unlike other bands in this style of music, we can do whatever we want. We cover a lot of different ground with our writing and sound.

 

Can you tell me how and when Steamroller was formed and where you call home at the moment?

BOB
I got together with the original drummer in Burbank during 1998. Soon Marc came on board and then Jason. We are still based in Burbank, California.

MARC
We’re based in Burbank now but soon, the world!

 

Can you fill me in on the influences and backgrounds of the band members and how these come together to form the Steamroller sound?

MARC
For me 70’s heavier music mostly. Like Deep Purple, Sabbath, Priest, Aerosmith, Zep, AC/DC, Alice Cooper, ZZ Top. You know, the good stuff.

BOB
I’m a huge Van Halen fan! I’m into the Beatles and way too many more to list.

JASON
First & foremost, Judas Priest! I love every song of every album they ever put out. In the rock area I also rank Annihilator, Megadeth, Pantera, Alice Cooper, Jimi Hendrix, King Diamond, Deep Purple, The Who. What makes it interesting, is I’m also into Glen Miller, Scott Joplin, Tchaikovsky. Each of us has a slightly different approach to the song while writing that takes it in a unique direction. That creates the Steamroller sound. The full collaboration just makes it something more than envisioned individually.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed your self titled e.p. Can you tell me how you came about recording the disc?

JASON
Thanks. As we were polishing the material at rehearsals, we were able to draw the attention of producer, Bobby Owsinski. He liked a previous recording we had just demo’d by ourselves and decided to check out a rehearsal to review more material. Bobby really liked the stuff and suggested going into The Complex studio here in Los Angeles. The budget was tight but we were well rehearsed and ready to be efficient. We ended up tracking 9 songs in 2 days! Later we picked 4 to finish and that’s what we currently have floating around. It’s just a taste of the band’s capabilities.

 

Did the writing of the songs for the e.p. take a long period of time or are you the type of band that always has lots of material ready to go?

BOB
We wrote those songs and several more in about a week! We are constantly writing and have an arsenal of tunes right now that would make any record label sleep good at night.

 

I was also very impressed with the production. Did it take a long time to get it right?

MARC
It came together pretty quickly. We all knew where we wanted to take it. Just straight ahead and in your face.

BOB
That’s our producer, Bobby Owsinski. He has a good ear as to what the band should sound like on tape. He is a great asset to the band.

 

When I listened to the CD, Victorian Rose emerged as a favorite tune of mine. It has great doomy riff and some great vocal work. Could you tell us about each song on the e.p. and any favorites that each of you in the band has?

MARC
No real favorites. I love each song for what it is too much to single anything out. The songs I get the most excited about, are the latest additions. As the arsenal grows, I always feel more powerful. I can’t wait to unload them on the unsuspecting.

BOB
I like all the tunes. No particular favorites.

JASON
I’m very proud of all the tunes we have on that CD as well as the gems you haven’t heard yet. I might be getting people overly excited with anticipation for more tunes but I have to say our song, Crushing Fragile Rock, is my current favorite. When we lock that one down it is better than sex to me! Nothing on this earth can compare to the rush I get from that song. It isn’t on the CD but at the live shows, that song is an exclamation point for Steamroller.

 

Do you have any material written for a new release and if so will it be a full length CD this time?

BOB
We have more than enough songs right now for 2 full length CD’s. We are a labels dream.

JASON
Our focus for the 4 song CD was just to give everyone a little taste of Steamroller. We have plans to release a full CD with label support in the near future.

MARC
At this point, we’re just looking for the right label to release them.

 

When I first heard the e.p. I couldn?t believe that Steamroller wasn?t signed to a label. Is there any label interest in the band? If so who and if not does it become frustrating to be ignored because you are not “trendy” at the moment?

MARC
We haven’t signed with anyone yet and yes, it is a little frustrating. We are not trendy. Trends are fads but our kind of music will always remain. People love it. It speaks to them like no other music can. It’s raw, energizing, life affirming, it’s always immediate. No type of “pop” music will ever do that. At best when you listen to it a decade later it will only remind you of what was happening in your life at that time. The music itself doesn?t really make you feel anything. Heavy rock, on the other hand, will always make you feel intensely.

BOB
We can?t believe we’re not signed either. Our time is coming though. We are talking with a few labels but I don’t want to name any and Jinx us. Hopefully they are ready to look for longevity instead of flash in the pans.

JASON
It is only a matter of time. I don’t view it as frustrating knowing that it is our divine destiny to rule the world and beyond with Steamroller rock! Everything is cycling around right now, as it always does and the focus is coming back to rock. We are confident in what we do and it comes naturally for us. I’m also very proud of having toughed out the 90’s playing what I WANTED to play instead of trying to fit in or clone someone. The Beatles, Zep and countless others were viewed as being out of step with the business but the labels that took that risk certainly aren?t regretting it. It is actually a plus to know that whatever label does offer the right deal will be doing so because they believe in the music instead of doing it because it’s safe or trendy.

 

Do you have any plans to tour behind the release of this CD?

JASON
Currently we have been supporting the CD live in the western US. Of course, once the industry machinery is behind us, we will be touring the world in support of a full length release.

MARC
We do plan to tour extensively. We’re gonna get to know the world on a first name basis.

BOB
Yeah, we stayed on the west coast of the US for the EP.

 

Have you done any larger shows with more established acts and what can a fan at a Steamroller show expect to see?

BOB
We’ve played with a few “names” while playing around the west coast. People always tell us how much they have missed not having rock music in the limelight like it was. They don’t like the bands who are mixing the sub genres together to make rock what it has become.

MARC
At a Steamroller show you can expect just one thing, massive amounts of energy! Take your vitamins!

JASON
We played some great shows in Las Vegas recently. The fans there are really energized. At a Steamroller show you can always expect great songs performed with total conviction. When we’re on stage, we’re unstoppable. The energy and intensity just pours from us. The fans will never be disappointed.

 

The band has such a great website www.steamrollerrocks.net. I was very impressed the first time that I visited it. Has the internet been of any help in trying to get your music out to the people?

MARC
The internet is the most amazing vehicle for contacting the world I’ve ever known. Ten years ago it would have been impossible to speak to people like yourself or people in Russia, Belgium, Italy, and Croatia. Due to the net, we’ve bypassed the middlemen and gone global. Because of this we now have fans and friends all over the world.

 

I see that Rich Scheidt is no longer listed as a member of the band on your website. Why is he gone? Are you looking for a new drummer or have you found one already?

MARC
We’ve been performing live and recording with different drummers so far but haven’t decided on a permanent replacement just yet.

BOB
Rich is a good friend and we wish him all the best. We have been auditioning and have a few candidates that will keep Steamroller powerful as ever!

JASON
Rich is one hell of a drummer and a good friend. As they say, It’s a long way to the top if you want to rock and you have to be ready to focus and accept great sacrifice on the way. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the best time for us to collaborate.

 

Are any members currently involved with any side projects?

JASON
Everyone is full on 100 % focused on Steamroller. Our writing is so versatile, we’re very fulfilled musically within the framework of Steamroller.

 

I am under the impression that Pontus Egberg of Lions Share once did some recording with Steamroller as did Bo Werner ex of Yngwie Malmsteen?s band. Could you fill me in on what the situation was with these two musicians and why they are not still in the band?

Marc
These are strictly rumors.

BOB
They are just rumors. We don’t know how they got started.

 

Has the North American market been receptive to your brand of metal? Have you been able to make any inroads in any overseas markets?

MARC
North America is home and it’s great to know they’re behind us. The US, Canada, and Mexico all have been in our corner and overseas the response has been amazing. Countries I didn’t even know existed are getting so into Steamroller. I can’t wait to go and perform for all of them.

JASON
We’re currently lining everything up for overseas and expanded homefront activities.

BOB
Europe has been very receptive to our material. We are getting airplay in the Ukraine, Germany, and Columbia! They were telling us there aren’t any bands playing our style of music there but instead opt for Death Metal, Blues or Jazz. We were blown away by that!

 

What are your feelings on the state of metal in North America and in your own home area?

BOB
Here in the US people are getting sick of all these clone bands of the rap-metal trend. The cycle is coming back around again, thank God!

MARC
Metal in the US has been pretty disappointing lately. I’m sure there are some great bands out there somewhere just not the ones on the radio, signed to major labels, or on tour.

JASON
Here in LA, the focus is on trends whether it be music, fashion, culture, etc. Where LA used to be the leader and other areas looked on waiting to see the next thing, the opposite now holds true. So the state of metal here is very underground. The shows we have played in LA have been well received and there is a fanbase but again, metal isn’t the current trend and mass acceptance to the general LA population requires just that.

 

What are the future plans for Steamroller?

MARC
The future is now! We’re doing all we can to get the full length release out and begin the tour. The Millennium has just begun and it’s time to STEAMROLL!

BOB
To keep writing great material, playing explosive live shows and let the kids know there is more out there than just Korn, Limp Biscuit, Bush, Etc.

JASON
To conquer the world and beyond. In this we shall be victorious!

 

On a closing note. Is there anything else that you would like to say to the readers of Metal Rules?

BOB
Check out the web site, tell your friends, e-mail us. Let us know if you would like a CD or T-shirt. And for all of you wanting rock back in the limelight, WE ARE ON OUR WAY!!!!!!!!

Marc
Keep the faith! Metal is coming back in full force because of you, the believers, the ones who refuse to die!

JASON
Thanks for the support. We look forward to playing live in your neck of the woods as soon as possible. Check out the sound bytes and let us know what you think. Keep it heavy and together WE WILL CRUSH FRAGILE ROCK!

 

Thanks Jason, Marc and Bob for taking the time to answer these questions!! Good luck in the future!!

 

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