American rock band Filmspeed have recently released their latest album Hexadecimal. We were lucky enough to have a chat with them about the process and their feelings toward the album, as well as the band’s plans for the future.
“Being able to put out a full-length 11-track LP will never be unfulfilling. There was so much time and effort invested into these songs, it’s like having the best kept secret of your life finally out in to the daylight.
“These songs were actually done with two different drummers with a big gap in between material. Some of these songs, as a far as content goes, are a couple years old. Others had their writing finished in-studio. Right before we got into final editing, we had a batch of 19 possible selections for the record. So we reached out to our circle of ears and friends to rate them from best to worst. We ended up going with 11 tracks. The majority of it was recorded with the help of the folks at AEA Mics in Pasadena, some clean up and finishing vocals done at Manifest Music in Santa Monica, CA. Still 100% produced, edited, mastered by ourselves.”
Continuing along that train of thought, the band explain exactly how it was different for them this time, when comparing to the release of their previous album.
“With ‘Heavy dB,’ there was already a back catalogue of songs for release. The whole prior three-song EP made its way to the full length. Once we got comfortable with our drummer at the time, we recorded another nine songs in about two days. On this latest album, it was a big gap in recording sessions while we were actively searching for a new full-time drummer. Once Oliver got behind the seat, the rest of the record kind of wrote itself.”
As per usual when a band releases a new album, it’s not long before tour plans start developing, and this incredible trio are no exception as they explain how Australia is on the cards.
“We are just about to confirm a little weekend trip through the South-West in mid-August. Also looking at the upper North-West around fall. Ultimately, we want to go everywhere, especially overseas. I’m fairly certain an Aussie crowd will go berserk live. It’ll be awesome.”
Despite the album having only been released a short while ago, the band are already looking at what’s next and throwing ideas around for the next album.
“The industry is really hyped up on singles and the B-side right now. So, we’ll probably end up doing a few of those ASAP, along with videos, of course, but still keeping another full-length in the distant future plan.”
With 14 years of history behind the band, we asked them to share three of the most memorable moments creating music together.
“The first tour show gig in Detroit after we had moved out here for a while was the best. Being able to show off all the hard work we had been grinding for years to our closest friends and family, it really doesn’t get better than that. Those afterparties are the ones for the highlight reel, no doubt.
“Most recently, we had a break-in at our rehearsal space, and unfortunately had seven guitars and other random gear stolen. Now, that isn’t the good part, we know. What immediately followed was a massive effort from our musician buddies and close friends to raise a bunch of money and buy replacements for both Nick and Craig . Unbelievable amount of cooperation, plotting and secrecy went into it, because we were kept in the dark. They even contacted Italia Guitars (our loyal endorsement folks) and had them keep the secret. Extremely awesome and humbling for us, and really lights more fire under our asses to keep on hustling.
“100% no BS though, Oliver has gotta be the tops. Even though we’re about two years in with him now, this is still the first batch of songs we’ve put out together. We’re all looking forward to the songs yet to be written. I mean, this dude has a jazz degree…”
Reflecting back on the album now that it’s out, the band share if there is anything they would have done differently.
“As a self-produced record? Zero regrets. In a perfect world? The record would have an insane budget, with like 50 different guitar textures, gospel choir section, Rick Rubin producing… you get the picture. Maybe once we climb to that level, the DIY record process will look like fun, but I doubt it.”
When asked if they could single out one song on the album that represents them best as a band, they not only explained which song they would pick, but how the process for the music video went down as well.
“It’s probably ‘Just My Luck.’ It’s got so much of our attitude in it and does the rock moves with a really fun swagger. Slide guitar, gang vocals, breakdowns, pauses, it still gets us going on the live stage too, always fun to play. Luckily, we worked with a super talented filmmaker named Sam Baker. As a band, we don’t have too much vision for video. She sat down at the table with us and executed like a champion. All the shooting was done in less than a day and we’re stoked on the end result. We’re really looking forward to working with a whole bunch of different directors and start thinking outside the usual when it comes to making music videos.”