Louisville, KY’s COLISEUM are preparing to enter the studio next month to record their debut Relapse full-length album. The until-recently untitled album (now titled 'No Salvation') will be recorded at Godcity Studios in Salem, MA with Kurt Ballou (CONVERGE) at the helm. Advance song titles include: "The Fate Of Men", "Believer", "Seven Cities", "No Benefit", "Fall Of The Pigs", "Funeral Line", and "Interceptor."
Immediately after recording, COLISEUM (Ryan Patterson - guitars / vocals, Mike Pascal – bass, and Chris Maggio – drums) will embark upon a week-long “Maximum Louisville” tour with YOUNG WIDOWS and PRIDESWALLOWER. COLISEUM are also mapping out a Summer tour with Syracuse, NY's ENGINEER that will take them into Canada for a week of shows with BURIED INSIDE and RAMMER.
Additionally, COLISEUM have teamed up with Hooligan Stakeboards who will unveil the first ever COLISEUM skate-deck in August to coincide with the new album’s release. COLISEUM’s Patterson says of the deck, “It's going to be a monstrous death-stick, prime for pavement ripping... We're psyched.”
Taking it from the top and what were your musical influences growing up and how many still factor into your music today? [Ryan Patterson, vocals / guitar] - "Growing up I was exposed to a lot of rock music from my father, mainly Beatles, Zeppelin, Doors, Hendrix, and a wide variety of 60s garage rock and one-hit-wonders like Seeds, Strawberry Alarm Clock, etc. That's my musical foundation for sure. In my early teens I discovered punk and hardcore and became obsessed with Minor Threat, Misfits, Black Flag, etc. I was, and remain, a huge fan of DC music, the Dischord label, and the music and ideals put forth by a lot of those bands. Overall I'd say I'm a product of America's independent music history - Dischord, Touch & Go, SST, Merge, Sub Pop and many others put out the music that shaped my formative years. Now I combine those influences and that sense of history with heavier music in my contribution to Coliseum."
[Chris Maggio, drums] - "This question can be answered easily in short essay form but not in a couple of sentences, so I am sure I will be leaving a lot out. The Descendents were a huge influence, so was Black Flag. I love Pink Floyd, Weird Al (yes, it’s amazing), Led Zeppelin, Slayer, I went through a NoFx phase, same with King Diamond’s “Abigail," Sly and the Family Stone, The Meters, Bad Brains, Fear, Shirk Circus, Ff, Simon and The Bar Sinisters, Cheap Trick, Leeway, Gorilla Biscuits...there is so much more. Motown and Stax records stuff became a huge part of my musical experience. I’ve been influenced by people I have played with as well, so there’s always other stimuli that’s just as important. I still rotate through some of this music, so I think I still take some influence from it, especially songs that I wanted to learn how to play note for note but never made time to practice and learn."
For the Average Joe who may not have heard of you and was thinking of buying your new upcoming CD, how would you yourself describe your sound? [Ryan] - "Fast and heavy punk/metal, with hooks. Motorhead, Avskum and Judgement in a knife fight with Rites Of Spring, Pegboy and Wipers."
[Chris] - "Intense and catchy, memorable, fast, loud, and urgent. Like Black Flag and Black Sabbath, played on 78 riding a wrecking ball right through your face!!!!! Turned up to 11.... With no pants on!!! Seriously it is really hard to say. I would say if you like punk rock, 80’s metal, thrash and hardcore you would probably like Coliseum."
Does your new album have a title yet? And if so, is it one that contains more of a personal meaning to you, perhaps?! [Ryan] - "The album is called No Salvation. It means a lot to me... It portrays a general sense of dread that I'm faced with in today's world."
[Chris] - <>"No Salvation is the title, it fit the part. Yes I think I can attach some meaning to the title of the record."
And just where does the bands name originate? [Ryan] - "Our name was inspired by the Coliseum amp by Sunn Amplification. We wanted something monolithic and simple... We got it."
Please tell us more about your association with Hooligan Skateboards and what it means for your fans? [Ryan] - "It means people will be able to shred curbs and get gnarly on ramps with the toughest Coliseum skateboard ever. We’re really f**king psyched to have our own skate deck!!!"
How easy (or hard) is it to constantly create a new, vibrant, wanted-by-the-public sound that both builds on and surpasses the musical wonderment's/accomplishments that preceded it within the industry? [Ryan] - "Well, we're not trying to write radio hits, that's for sure... We just write music that moves us, that's sincere, exciting and intense. Coliseum has some obvious influences and there are elements that bear similarities to other bands, but as a whole I think we are a very unique band and that there are no other bands doing exactly what we do... If for no other reason than we have three very different and distinct people contributing to the band."
[Chris] - "It is very hard!!! I don’t think I know how to accomplish this, I don’t know how to think in that way, and I have been doing the same thing for a long time so I am probably out of date!!!!"
Please tell us more (in a quick fashion!) about what was going on in your life when these songs were being written and recorded:
'The Fate Of Men' [Ryan] - "A time of uncertainty and a desire to not lose the inspiration to stay involved in the things that are important to me. A song about never giving in. It was a hard time for me and I was trying to get some things out in the lyrics that I couldn’t say to the people around me. Musically, we tried to get into some heavier grooves than we’d done before and we collaborated a lot in the arrangement of the song. I had the riff already, but we built it all around Chris’ drum patterns."
[Chris] - "Lots of pretending to quit smoking, lots of travel, lots of financial trouble, lots of relationship troubles, a huge lack of relationships...anxiety attacks, sense of impending doom, fear and depression! This song was also constructed along with three other songs that are on the album during what I think was the best writing session for the album... It came in a burst from a collection of random ideas we had been messing with, so I feel very attached to this song because I felt like I got to really to push the direction of this song."
'Seven Cities' [Ryan] - "Who owns you while you guzzle gas on the highways? This song went through a lot of different ideas lyrically, before finally finding focus in some simple ideas about the power of the oil industry. Musically I think it’s probably our most Bad Brains / Minor Threat moment, with some great rock hooks in the chorus."
[Chris] - "This was the third song written with this Coliseum line up. It was a very strenuous time for everyone in the band, we were still getting used to each other and our situation. I live in Florida and have been flying up to Louisville to work with the band, so this song was written during the beginning stages of this lifestyle (travel and time constraints). We had no practice space to call our own so we were borrowing friend’s rehearsal rooms, GOD!!!... It was nightmarish and very uncomfortable but we got a great song out of this time period."
'Fall Of The Pigs' [Ryan] - "A reminder to never trust the person who forces their will upon you. It’s usually my daily life that inspires the lyrics, this one being inspired by all the bastards everywhere that think they’re in control of you because of a uniform or a societal position. This is probably my favorite song on the record... We took some of the vibe of “Children” from our first album and then took some dynamic twists and turns ending up in a totally different place."
[Chris] - "One of the last songs to be written for No Salvation, this one came easy for me... It all made sense, I don’t remember having to struggle for a good arrangement or anything. Ryan had most of the ideas already on guitar. It was a fun one to work on, we were all excited with it - in fact, the second half of this song is one of my favorite things to listen to. I love the breaks and the Slayer-esque groove at the end. Oh yeah, my life at this point was on auto-pilot, especially after about six months of constant travel and work, and all the aforementioned dilemmas in “The Fate Of Men".”
If asked to record one for charity, what '80s (and possibly cheesy!) pop/rock song would you love to cover today ... and why?! [Ryan] - "I always dug "Power Of Love" by Huey Lewis and The News. I had all their LPs as a kid... It’s cheesy shit, but really fun."
[Chris] - "Billy Squires' “The Stroke,” or “Rock Me Tonight,” or anything Billy Squires. I like Billy Squires, always have! There are tons of 80s songs I would like to play, but I would choose Billy Squires right now. If that wasn’t possible I would go with Van Halen’s “Panama.” Both of which because they kick ass!"
Lastly, Exclusive Magazine love Penguins ... do you?! [Ryan] - "My least favorite Batman villain! The animals are cute enough."
[Chris] - "I saw March Of The Penguins recently...in fact I have been wondering for quite some time what makes things like penguins, owls, unicorns, etc a cultural phenomenon. It seems like there are suddenly penguin movies and penguin hats and penguin shirts and penguin people all over the place. But I guess they are cool, I feel bad for them. They have a rough time and they get a bad rap. I would love one for a pet!"
Interviewed by Russell A. Trunk
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