Hangtime from Canada are in no way strangers to the pages of this zine. They recently released their brand new e.p. and it became in my opinion one of the best releases this year. I just love it. So, it was a great opportunity to talk with the guys for Kraykulla.
HI GUYS, NICE TO FEATURE YOU IN MY ZINE. WHATS UP? CAN YOU TELL THE READERS SOMETHING ABOUT THE HISTORY OF HANGTIME FOR THE READERS WHO DID NOT HEAR OF YOU?
Thanks for having us! Warren and I (Rick) have been playing in bands together since 1989. Hangtime started around 2009. Our current lineup put out our first full length record in 2010, with the exception of Enzo who joined the band in 2013. Since then, we released another full length record “Invictus Melodious”, as well as 2 EP’s “Invasion”, followed by “Destroy”. We’ll be releasing our first LP on vinyl sometime in January 2021, which hosts each EP per side.
TALK OF THE DAY IS YOUR NEW RELEASE OUT VERY SOON. WHAT CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT THE NEW RECORD? HOW WAS THE WRITING AND RECORDING PROCESS? YOU GUYS HAVE SUCH NICE MELODIES AND HARMONIES IN VOCAL AND MUSIC LINES, SO WHAT COMES FIRST, LYRICS OR RIFFS AND MUSIC? WHERE CAN WE GET/BUY YOUR NEW RECORD?
Our latest release is our 2nd EP, “Destroy!” that we released Sept 2020. 6 new songs – short, catchy and melodic, totaling 15 minutes and 43 seconds. Warren and I usually split the song writing duties for each release and we each sing our own (self-written) lyrics. A song for me, usually starts off with a line, vocal melody, some chords underneath, on an acoustic.
Once I have a verse/chorus foundation, I’ll go back and add a beginning riff, bridge and maybe an outro. Once I have this, I’ll try it out with the guys at practice. Hangtime’s music is available on all the usual streaming platforms. We also have cd’s/shirts and other merch available for purchase on: https://hangtimeband.bandcamp.com/music and https://www.epicmerchstore.com/collection/artists/hangtime/
YOU DELIVER PERSONAL THEMES IN YOUR LYRICS TO THE SONGS, DO YOU THINK THAT THERE ARE TOO LITTLE POLITICAL PUNK BANDS LEFT IN THE SCENE AND THAT PUNK SCENE LOST ITS TOUCH WITH BEING PROVOCATIVE, ANGRY AND REBELLIOUS?
I’m not smart enough to write songs about politics so I just stick to the personal stuff. To me, the important things are the melodies, harmonies, and writing a catchy song and trying to have them sound good live, and to have fun doing it. Write about what you know, if that happens to be politics, then that’s cool.
DID YOU GUYS TOUR OUTSIDE CANADA A LOT? DID YOU DO A EUROPEAN TOUR? WHAT ARE THE MAIN DIFFERENCES BETWEEN EUROPEAN SCENE AND CROWD AND BACK IN CANADA AND USA? ANY FUNNY TOUR STORIES?
We haven’t toured outside of Canada a lot, but we’re planning to. We were working at setting up a tour in Europe and applying to some festivals in Japan before the Covid-19 pandemic started. Of course, our plans have been halted for the time being.
WILL THE NEW RECORD BE IN PHYSICAL FORM(CD) OR ONLY DIGITAL? DO YOU BELIEVE THAT BANDS CAN STILL SELL ENOUGH HARD COPIES OF THEIR RECORDS NOWADAYS OR IS DIGITAL THE RELEASE FORM OF THE FUTURE?
All of our music is available in digital and physical format as well. We always like to make at least a short run of cd’s for people who still want the feel and look of the real thing in their hands. We’re excited to have copies of “INVASION/DESTROY!” together on 12′ vinyl, coming out in Jan 2021.
WHAT WERE YOUR MUSICAL INFLUENCES GROWING UP AND WRITING AS A BAND? TO REPHRASE THE QUESTION, CAN YOU STILL REMEMBER THE FIRST PUNKROCK/HARDCORE SHOW YOU WENT TO?
The first punk show I went to was in Toronto, at the Siboney club, to see Dag Nasty. It was the Field Day tour, around 1989, I was 16. The first punk band that blew my mind was Minor Threat. I thought they were catchy and melodic and hadn’t heard anything like it. I was more into metal (Metallica & Slayer) at the time. Then I heard Bad Religion’s “Suffer” record and the song “Coolidge” by Descendents in the same day and couldn’t believe what I was hearing; it’s been my favorite genre of music ever since.
IS THERE ANY TRUTH IN BELIEF THAT CANADIANS ARE MORE HAPPY AND MORE SMILING THAN AMERICANS? HEHE, DONT LAUGH, THAT IS THE POPULAR BELIEF HERE IN EUROPE, I HEARD IT A LOT OF TIMES IN THE PAST.
Hmmm… I don’t know if Canadians are more happier than Americans. Perhaps we’re just quieter and more relaxed; we sit back and assess the situation first and then react accordingly. But for us to have the reputation of being happy, smiling people is cool.
WHAT IS YOUR STANCE ON THIS COVID VIRUS AND ALL THE PROPAGANDA? HOAX? CONSPIRACY THEORISTS HEAVEN OR SOMETHING ELSE?
My personal stance on Covid is, wear a mask. It’s not hard to do & they don’t cost a lot of money. Even if you don’t believe in science – even if you think it’s a hoax, it’s not a lot to ask. You might save a loved one’s life. Stay home if you can & stay away from large crowds. Hopefully in a few more months, the vaccine will be well distributed and we can get things back to normal, start having shows, live music and having some fun again.
WHAT CAN YOU SAY WERE YOUR PEAKS AS HANGTIME AND YOUR LOWEST POINTS ALSO? WERE YOU DISAPPOINTED A LOT OF TIMES?
I don’t think we’ve hit the peak yet, we were ramping things up just as Covid hit and slowed everything down. The lowest has got to be the quarantine; it seems to have brought almost all music to a standstill.
WHAT ARE YOU DOING TO PAY BILLS AND SURVIVE BESIDES PLAYING IN THE BAND? HOW IS LIFE IN CANADA GENERALLY?
Some guys are working from home when possible, at their normal day jobs. As everyone knows, it’s almost impossible for bands to make enough money to survive by just playing music. Things are ok here but people are starting to get restless with Covid and all the limitations; I’m sure it’s the same in most parts of the world.
THIS IS IT FOR THE FIRST TIME. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS ONE. ANY WISE WORDS FOR THE END?
Thanks again for having us! Wise words…hmm… Keep on rockin in the free world, and…oops, nevermind, that’s Narduwar’s gig.