New Blood: To The Test

To The Test is five young dudes from Eastern-Netherlands who have playing together since 2007. Give support to up and coming band, read the interview, check out their video and make sure you go to their show when they play in your area!
To The Test is five young dudes from Eastern-Netherlands who have playing together since 2007. Give support to up and coming band, read the interview, check out their video and make sure you go to their show when they play in your area!

I guess not everyone might be familiar with To The Test or some people maybe even too lazy to check out new bands, so can you give us a rundown on the band? How and when did you all get together to make music?

To the test is band that was started by 5 friends who wanted to make music. We all lived in a small town in Holland, called Delden, and we hung out almost everyday. We have almost the same taste in music and thought it would be cool to start a band. We started making music together in 2003 but after some small line-up changes To The Test started in 2008.

What can you tell us about your new ep? Where does the title, Crack City, come from? What’s the inspiration behind this? Apart from Crack City, what else have you released so far?

We're very happy that we finally have a new record! The last thing we released was a split with Striking Justice which was released in 2008. A year or 2 after that we recorded 14 songs in some barn and the plan was to release a full length. But due to some exporting problems we couldn't use any of the songs we recorded. Later we re-recorded 5 songs and that became the 2010 Demo. So it has been a while! And because it has been that long we wanted to do something special with the design and layout. We put a lot of thinking, measuring and time in this EP and we are very happy with the result.

We recorded everything at Stijn and Niek from "Duct Tape Studio" in Rotterdam. They also mixed and mastered everything. Two awesome young guys who know what they are doing and love what they are doing. Check them out!

Crack city is about a town called Neede. This is where our singer Kevin lives nowadays. Neede is a town in the east of holland next to the german border. It has a population of 9.000 people, but the drug trade and traffic is very high. Probably 30% of the youth that still lives here is on drugs.

There are no pubs, clubs or anything. The last youth center was closed a year ago, so the kids are wandering the streets, looking for something to do. It's a downward spiral for most of them, they get in touch with drug dealers , trying to escape reality of just to have something to do. Lot of girls will lay on there backs for a gram of cocaine or speed. The dark alleys that most people fear are like a second home for them. A place to find some joy, a place to hide.

Because of the bad name of the town there are not a lot of people that will move here. Most of the people are moving out of this shithole. So the stores get closed and the chance at getting a job is decreasing.

Neede is a two faced place. Under the sunlight you will see the old, grey people on there disability scooters, under the moon light the wasted youth, and all the scum of this diying hell hole.

How would you describe band’s running sound and what bands have the biggest influence on your songwriting?

Our sound is often described as "heavy, aggressive and groovy", which sound about right! Although we almost have the same taste in music, we all have different influences. So it's hard to say which bands influenced us the most. But i guess it's safe to say that we where blown away ones we heard the records "lowest of the low" and "one with the underdogs" by Terror. I guess every beginning hardcore band want's to have an aggressive and nasty sound like that.

Outside of music influences, what drives you to do the music and carry on with the band?

We started as friends who like to hang out with eachother and play the music we like and that is still what keeps us going. But aside from that, it's so great to show up in some venue, load out your stuff, drink a local beer, talk to the people at the show and getting good respons. Whether it's people moshing, a compliment after the show, banging heads or someone buying you a beer, every band that is getting out of the garage to get on stage is glad to see people like their music.

What was the best show you played so far?

It sounds lame, we know, but almost every show has something good. One time the reaction of the crowd is great but you play a shitty show, or you play without any mistakes but people just stand and bang their heads. It's all good! But that is not what you want to hear i think. So the show that is still on our mind because of the greatest vibe, people, beer and sleeping place was the show in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic on our tour with Striking Justice. It was some kind of motor club called "Slash Bar" and it was the kind of show you didn't know what to expect. But it turned out to be awesome! That's probably one of the best shows so far.

Netherlands is known for a solid hardcore scene. What local bands you support and think that kids should be checking out?

Yeah, there are a lot of great bands in the Netherlands but the shows aren't as packed as a couple of years ago. Every show at our local venue "Innocent" used to be packed but lately it is not that good. But it will probably get better in time because there a lot of great (new/young) bands! Check out: Running Out, Troops of Doom, Hawser, Rott'n Damned, The Road Home, Grown Cold, Striking Justice, Lies!, Swim or Drown and ofcourse we don't have to tell you about bands like Cornered, No Turning Back and All For Nothing!

What do you guys do outside of the band?

4 of us are still studying and one of us is a working man.

Favorite horror flick?

Good one! Night of the living death is certainly in the top 10

What’s planned for the rest of 2013?

We're working on some new songs so maybe we'll record anything soon. But until then we'll play as much shows as we can, do a re-press of our EP and maybe some new shirts. We'll see! Sad to say we don't have any upcoming tours. But when we do we hope to get back to Novi Sad again!

Thanks for doing the interview, any last words or shout outs?

No problem! Thanks for your interest! Check out the bands mentioned above, you won't regret it!