By My Hands

By My Hands has been steadily making a name for themselves in the scene both on local and international level. With couple of succesful tours and releases behind their belt, things can only get better as the new album, Growing Older, Getting Colder, is a major step forward in terms of writing heavy and catchy songs that makes you wanna kill everybody in the pit. Read the interview, buy new album, buy creatine, go to their show!
By My Hands has been steadily making a name for themselves in the scene both on local and international level. With couple of succesful tours and releases behind their belt, things can only get better as the new album, Growing Older, Getting Colder, is a major step forward in terms of writing heavy and catchy songs that makes you wanna kill everybody in the pit. Read the interview, buy new album, buy creatine, go to their show!

There is a few year gap in between each of your albums. What’s been happening with By My Hands since the "Another Lesson Learned" came out?

CHRIS: Another Lesson Learned came out 2005, so quite a lot of shit has happened since then!
First thing we did since that release was tour with CDC and In Blood We Trust in the UK, then we release a 8 track split cd (4 from each band) with CDC on the now defunct Zone 6 Records. After this we toured east coast, central and southern USA with Leavenworth. That was one of the best times of our lives - we got to play with some many cool bands, cool shows, and hang with really cool people. We even played Dypshorias reunion show, and How It Ends last ever show, so that was extra special.
After this all we have been doing was writing new songs, and playing shows. We toured the UK a couple times over with Palehorse and xRepresentx too. That's about it!

Can you give us a little background on the new album? How do you think it compares to your previous record?

CHRIS: I think it sounds totally different from the split, and definately completely different from Another Lesson Learned, but still ultimately sounds like By My Hands. Of course, we think it is more mature and greater than anything we've released before, but bands always say that, otherwise, what'd be the point in writing new shit?
The metal influences definately don't shine through as much as they did in 'A.L.L' but, instead these sound more hardcore, more groovy, if that makes sense. There's definately more groove to this record. I think if you listened to all 3 records starting for the earliest to the newest you can definately hear the progression happening.

Is there anything different on this album that people might not expect to hear?

CHRIS: There's some sweet samples, a solo, some guest appearances, and a whole lot of heavy hardcore. I think more of our hardcore influnces shine through than the metal ones here, but it still definately sounds like BMH. Hopefully it has something that everyone can get down to or relate to.

How did you decide on the title, “Growing Older, Getting Colder”?

CHRIS: It's a lyric from the song 'Real' that appears on the album.
It just seemed perfect fit for the album name, given the lyrical content, and more importantly how we all feel/felt as a band during the writing and recording of the cd. It's been over 4 years since our last release, , we were having a lot of problems with recording the cd at the time, the hardcore scene was changing, the political climate was changing, our personal lifes were changing, the world was changing. The title means is exactly what it says, and a fair representation of how we feel as a band. You are supposed to mellow out as you get older, but we certainly dont feel that way, let's say.

In my opinion, one of the strongest points of the new album are the lyrics, with themes ranging from personal to socio-political issues. Care to tell us what inspired you when writing some of this stuff?

CHRIS: Thanks man, that mean's a lot.

As you said, a bunch of different issues are covered from song to song, and I tried to be as honest as I could about my feelings when I was writing, whether they were viewed as cliched topics or not. I really wanted to make my feelings clear to anyone who heard or read these words, I wanted the conviction to literally drip from the page. I didn't want to pull any punches, and I think I did that the best I could.

'The Hate', was inspired by a great dislike, shall we say, for organised religion. We live in a city, and indeed a country with a deep seeded religious divide and in-built intolerance. Vulernable people live, fight and die by this fear-obsessed fairytale right wing fascist-fed bullshit every other day all over the world, and I guess it's made me more than a little intolerant of it.
The song 'Trapped' touches on this vaguely but overall is more of a song about our city, the class war, and the state it's in right now.

'Worlds Apart' is more like a bit of a political statement on war than anything else. As you know, we regretably come from a country which hearlds an army that has been party to more than a few illegal occupations of other countries, especially in recent times, with the Iraq and Afghan wars. It's hard to live here, and see people, family members, friends.....sign up to these wars to escape their own struggles, the monotany of a jobless penny-less life on an estate, so that they vindicate their lives....made to feel like they've made something of themselves due to the pressure and praise heaped on them by national news and the like.....when in reality they are sadly used as political cannon fodder in this money-hungry horseshit that's used to divide the people. This song was written at a time the Palestinian land-grab war was prominent in nthe news too (even though the struggle continues, coverage has dwindled), so I guess it's my feelings, over all, on war and occupation.

Other stuff such as 'Real' 'Dead Words (The Truth Hurts) and 'Bad Beat' are more of the personal nature about feelings, opinions, and thoughts on events in and around life, and to be honest, I think I've rambled on enough about this subject...but if anyone is interested enough to want to know about the lyrics of the album, then I'd welcome any questions. Get at us via myspace/facebook or email; deadweightbookingATgooglemailDOTcom.

How did you hook up with Marked For Death records?

CHRIS: Well, Manuel at MFD emailed us, literally about 8 months before the album dropped, as he knew we were writing and looking for label.
From day one he was really into the music, our style, and our message as a band. He kept in touch with ideas he had for us, emailed constantly to check on us, and generally seemed really interested. We definately wanted a label behind us who shared our values and the same passion for our music as we do, so the rest is history.
Support a real label.

SEAN: Yeah for sure, we've had a lot of good feeback from up and down the UK and Europe so far over the years, being from Glasgow hasnt been as much of a disadvantage as it may seem. In this day and age, location is becoming less and less important for bands. Aslong as your cd is floating about on the internet, people will hear it regardless of where your from, if they can get it for free they will probably listen to it, even if they've never really heard of you.
For us, we've always had good ties with bands in London and for a while it was a place that we had a lot of friends, and a fairly good following. Some of our first releases were on a London-based label, so our records were readily available. This was beneficial for us when bringing out a new record, because a lot of the older heads were famiilar with our earlier stuff, it meant that there was no hesitation for hardcore kids down that way to check out the new shit, and in turn, put us on shows down there. Something which can be hard for bands who are trying to book their own shows.

And how do you feel about the way UK hardcore has recently been represented overall? How do you feel about the bands that are currently active in the UK scene?

SEAN: At the moment there are a lot of really good bands in the UK, and conversely, a lot of completely garbage ones. Unfortunately, as with most places, when one good band pops up, so do a million other godawful carbon copies. On a global scale, the UK is being represented fairly well I think. From being over the states recently, Ive noticed that being from the UK is almost becoming an excuse to check out a band if your American, and as a result, people just cant get enough of UK bands.. Bring Me the Horizon, Architects, Your Demise, Gallows, You Me at Six, Dead Swans amongst others are all well killing it in the states at the moment, some more than others of course, but doing good none the less. OK so they may not all be hardcore, but have been in and around the hardcore scene and its fringes here at some point, like it or not. I remember Taking Names went to the US years ago too. That was a good band. Here in the UK, there are a lot of good smaller bands who are developing their own sound and have good ethics, which is refreshing to see in hardcore. For a long times theres been too much of an emphasis on how you look or how many tattoos you've got, so its good to see what Id consider "newish" bands (like us) like Brutality Will Prevail, Broken Teeth, Basement, Deal With It, True Valiance, More Than Life, Departures, Breaking Point, Deal With It, Cold Snap, Last Witness etc just doing whatever the hell they want, playing shit they like, not caring if people like it or not, while being supported by great DIY labels such as Purgatory or Holy Roar records.

How do you feel the scene in the UK differs from mainland Europe in general?

SEAN: I think the main difference would be the divisions in genre. In the UK, there isnt much of a crossover in genres, and people generally tend to stick to one strict style or genre of hardcore. In europe theres a much better sense of unity, and people will usually turn up to shows regardless of whos playing, simply to support music in their area. Also, from a musicians point of view, European promoters usually treat bands a lot better than UK promoters. Not that UK promoters treat bands badly, but promoters on the mainland go above and beyond to make sure you are fed properly, have plenty to drink at all times and have a nice place to stay. It makes a nice change from having to go around the crowd asking people for a place to stay, you know?

“No cheesey fake "endorsements", no "paid for" fancy myspace pages, No "band management" with fax & paging numbers.” – is it something you see often in UK? Do you think that increasing popularity of hardcore draws a lot of kids who are not getting it right?

CHRIS: I think its a "problem" worldwide, not only in the UK. I hate seeing bands who have more professionally taken "photos" than shows they've played, or more merch for sale than the amount of songs that band has written, bands with management and representation that haven't played out of their home know?
I see it all the time now-a-days. To me, it's totally crazy. Live fast die fast bands. They spring from nowhere looking for a fast rise to "fame" or whatever, get none, then change their name and start again.
For me, it all stems with the internet, and how easy it is to access things, like new bands....this was a great thing for me when getting into hardcore, but it also has its bad also means that you can drop a band as quickly as you picked them up, for something new because of the saturation of bands trying to rise to fast.
Everything is disposable.
For me a lot of things are lost, for example interaction with a band, communication, you get me? Most of our friends, shows, and friends have came about from talking with real people directly rather than using management to send contracts and official bullshit to promoters and bands, while hiding behind an over-produced website with no substance.
A lot of unity is lost this way. It makes things more 'plastic'. Hardcore's more than just look or a "sound". It doesnt matter how much you "sound" like a hardcore band, hardcore is a mentality, and I think kids forget that.

So, in your opinion, what are some of the most important lessons in hardcore? What kids should keep in mind?

CHRIS: haha, I hate telling people what to do like I'm some kind of expert, cause I'm not, but in my opinion the best things you can do are;
Talk to people at shows, via email, yourselves, and try and concentrate on the music first before you do anything else. Good music and real people stand the test of time.

Before we finish, what are future plans for the band?

CHRIS: Yes! We have been a band for 7 years, and 6 of those we've been playing shows, and all we have managed in mainland in europe is one show. We need to play on the mainland as soon as possible, so hopefully we will do this before the end of 2010, or at the beginning of 2011. Manuel from Marked For Death is currently oraganising a huge show for his label in Augsburg, so we can hopefully use this as a starting point for a tour.

We are also currently finalising a tour in South Africa with a band called Conqueror ( from Jo'burg. I really can't fucking wait for that.
Other than that, we are just going to continue as normal, play as many shows as we can, tour the album, and hopefully write some new shit.

If anyone is interested in booking us at any time, just get in touch.

Any last words for the readers? Anything you want to get off your chest?

Yeah - Big up to Dloogi and Hardboiled! Thanks for the support.
Support the zines, support your scene, and support real bands.