Monday, July 13, 2009
Agonist Singer Stands For Her Beliefs
Mama always told me never to judge a book by it's cover and man is that so true. I first saw pictures of Alissa White-Gluz in Revolver's Hottest Chicks In Metal. I have to admit that she is a very striking woman. A pure natural beauty, whose hair is a wild combo of purple and blue. So, I decided to check them out. I picked up their first Cd entitled "Only Once Imagined" and popped it in my player and was shocked. I knew they were a metal core band but it was Alissa's vocals that caught me by surprise. She has the amazing ability to go from a growling type of screaming to singing in this very melodic tone.
I saw them a while back at Volume 11 in Raleigh,NC and shortly after go ta chance to talk with Alissa.
JP- "Hi Alissa, let me start by thanking you for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk with me."
Alissa- "No problem! We have been very busy on the road touring to promote our latest CD 'Lullabies For The Dormant Mind'."
JP- "I'm curious as to when you first decided that this was what you wanted to do with your life, take off on the rock and roll journey?"
Alissa- "In 2003 I was in my first band called Dream Theater. We were a progressive metal band. I always performed in school programs and plays."
JP- "Now, I saw where the band was first called Tempest and then changed its name to The Agonist. How did that come about?"
Alissa- "We were called Tempest until Simon joined. That's when we found out that there was another band with the same name. There were some legal problems, so we decided to change our name to The Agonist. I really didn't think the old name fit us very well. This one is more appropriate."
JP- "Your vocal styling is very amazing. I was blown away when I saw all that power and emotion coming out of such a small person. I can't get over how you go from growling to singing very melodically. How do you accomplish such a feat?"
Alissa- "Well, thank you. I have to take care of my voice to make sure that I don't strain it. I have to watch how much I use it before a show and I even have to watch what I eat."
JP- "You are such a creative person that I am sure you must have a wide range of influences?"
Alissa- I am actually inspired for songs from painting. I love Salvador Dali. I am also inspired by Gwen Stafani, Poe, Freddie Mercury and Andrew Lloyd Webber. I also love Angela Gossow, who I know, of Arch Enemy. I think she is just amazing."
JP- "The lyrics that you write are not typical in this day and age. Your lyrics do have somewhat of a serious tone to them. You have very strong beliefs that you express through them."
Alissa- "That's true, my lyrics are a mixture of things, but mostly I write about what I believe in. This is entertainment and it's art. I know that people who listen to our songs may not share my beliefs but I would still want them to listen to what I have to say. If they don't share my beliefs they can still enjoy our music. I don't try to shove it down their throats or anything. I just want to share a different look on things."
JP- "So, what are your best and worst road stories?"
Alissa- "I have so many great road stories, not many bad ones. We just get to meet so many amazing people out on the road. we crash at alot of peoples houses while we are touring. We actually got to crash at Bam Margera's house not too long ago. We found out that he is a huge fan of the band. That was very cool."
JP- "Do you have any guilty pleasures , if printable, that may surprise your fans?"
Alissa- "I love Vegan ice cream, I could eat a whole tub of it. There is this cappuccino flavor that I just love"
JP- "On your new CD, at the beginning of '....And Their Eulogies Sang Me To Sleep', it sounds like a vocal slip. Was that a blooper or what?"
Alissa- "That is so funny, you are actually the first person who has asked me about that. Our producer Christian Donaldson likes to keep all of the tape of my exercising my vocals and all the bloopers that may come along. When he's mixing the finished product, he likes to sneak those slip-ups in and see if anyone catches them. I actually liked that one and we left it in."
JP- "One last question, if you were trapped on a desert island and could have only one store bought CD, what would you want there with you?"
Alissa- "Wow, I would probably want to have something by Arch Enemy or 'The End Is Begun" by 3."
The Agonist is definitely a standout in the growing genre of metal core. Musically, they are a tight unit. Lyrically, I challenge you to find a band who has more to say in their lyrics. You can check them out at www.myspace.com/theagonist.