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Cancer Bats: Interview with Liam Cormier, vocals

Interview by Melanie Brehaut


Liam Cormier: vocals
Scott Middleton: guitar
Jaye R. Schwarzer: bass
Mike Peters: drums

So you’ve come to the end of a pretty big Europe/UK tour! How was it overall?

The whole tour was amazing! We went to so many of our favourite cities and it was a total party at each stop. It was great to finish off the tour in the UK where all the shows were insane. Great vibes all around.

 Was there any gig that stands out for you for any reason (good or bad!)?

One show that really stuck out for me was the show in Prague. It was at the Lucerna venue which we played on our very first trip to Prague with Rise Against and The Bronx in 2007. So coming back and ripping that same venue with Sleeps and having it be such a crazy show with everyone singing along and stage diving was such a good feeling.

It must have been crazy travelling with so many people (four bands!). Was it a bit of a bro-down during your down time?

This tour was such a huge hang! Most days we would roll up to the venue and everyone would be skateboarding and hanging out. Drinking coffee and enjoying the sunshine! Such a good hang! I already miss it!

With the obvious exception of the Oathbreaker vocalist, the lone female! Did she manage to hold her own amongst a sea of dudes?

Yeah Caro is super chill and her whole band is the best. She’s in no way separate as Oathbreaker just roll as a group of friends and not a metal band with a girl singer. They’re the best!

Does touring get harder as you get older, start to put down roots, enter long term relationships, etc?

It can be and I know for us now trying to have that balance can be tricky, but if its something that important you’ll make it work. We have an awesome team that we work with, who all get it, so it never becomes an issue of us not wanting to live in a van anymore.

Cancer Bats
Cancer Bats (Photo Credit: Michelle Murphy)

Turning to your new album ‘Searching For Zero’. Two of the things that struck me about it when I listened to it were a) there seems to be a definite influence on your sound from your turn as ‘Bat Sabbath’, and b) it’s quite a dark album, on a par with ‘Bears, Mayors, Scraps and Bones’. Can you comment on both of these?

I would agree with both those comments! I think learning all of those Sabbath songs had an influence on the writing of this record, I would say less in riffs and more in groove and structure. I also think this record is a lot darker in the same way Bears was, but I do think I’ve gotten better at explaining some of the ideas I’m presenting, and learned from some of the mistakes I made with Bears. We’re still a positive band and that message carries through in Searching For Zero I think, a lot better than it did in Bears. I really wanted to make sure I had that resolve with this album and not just a bunch of bummed out heavy songs haha.

Do you have a favourite song from the album? One that’s the most meaningful to you, or is even just the most fun to play live?

I love this album and have so many favourites! Beelzebub is one of the most meaningful songs and also such a different style of song for me to write. Being vulnerable and scared isn’t something I really knew how to put into words or even sing about and I feel like this song I’ve gotten closer to figuring that out. I will also I love playing All Hail live! You know you’ve written a good thrash song when kids circle pit right when you start playing it haha.

Searching For Zero

How do songs come together for Cancer Bats? Is it a collaborative effort from the whole band, or just one or two members?

When it comes time for us to write another album its all four of us locked in a basement just throwing around riffs and ideas and having a blast. We still keep it fun and make it four friends hanging out making music they would want to party to and not get too caught up in what we “should” write or do. Once we’re stoked we’re then ready to bring that party to the rest of the world!

So, what’s next for the band? You’re playing some dates in America, then what? Any festival appearances this summer at all?

The only festival appearance we will be making this summer is Leeds and Reading fest which is going to be amazing! We are way too stoked to be playing on such a killer line up and hang with our homies in While She Sleeps! Best hangs!

Finally – and this is very important: who would win a dance-off between you and the While She Sleeps boys? 

We would 100% take the crown and I know this because the battle already happened! After the Manchester show everyone went out and partied super hard and it was Jaye Bone holding it down on the dance floor with his epic Canadian moves.  Jaye is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to gettin’ down! There are not many who dare challenge him to a dance off, sadly Sleeps didn’t even know what they were getting themselves into when they set foot on the dance floor.

Buy ‘Searching For Zero’ here: