Following the release of a mighty debut album this summer, Destroy The Planet kindly took part in an interview to let us dig deeper into how the band became, what the project represents, and what they have planned in the coming months. Here’s how it went.
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Hi guys – thanks for the interview, and congrats on the new album; wonderful song-writing and brilliant musicianship.
For those who don’t know, how would you describe your creative approach?
Thank you! I think our songs represent moments. We take from different things that life brings us, though most ideas come from the premise of old movies or stories. It’s fun to take something you just watched or read and play on the what-happens-next aspect.
Our music isn’t all that deep, so whatever story we’re telling might not have a beginning or an end, it’s just a description of a moment. We also don’t write anything in order. An entire song could have started from one verse or a riff or even a phrase of words that we chose to build from. I think this is key to not getting trapped in a formula and it forces us to create from different angles.
Why did you decide to call the band Destroy the Planet?
Several names were thrown around, but this one had that drive-in sci-fi movie sort of feel to it. And we thought it’d look cool on shirts and posters.
You formed during a tumultuous 2020 – how did that happen?
In 2019, Albert (drums) and I worked together, another coworker suggested that we combine forces and start a project. We didn’t originally plan on it becoming a bigger thing and we were moving along pretty slowly. 2020 being a “downtime” year then played a massive role, in what had started as a “let’s record a few songs” type of deal, it took on a different form on a larger scale.
While we waited for studios to open up again, the ideas and plans got bigger. So we added Mike on bass and then immediately started rehearsals as a full band and got ourselves in a studio to lay down tracks the first chance we could.
What’s the deal with Hungry For The Science – what’s the concept, and what do you hope listeners take away from it?
The name of the album was a direct result of the cover art concept. We knew we were getting a robot destroying a planet for the cover, but that’s the band name. So it was suggested that the title should allude to “why” is this happening, so we made a list of possibilities and the result was Hungry for the Science. To me, it sounded equally as cool as it was nerdy, so it was an easy choice.
I hope that listeners connect with the energy of the record. There really aren’t any common themes from song to song, but I think it’s a record that is pretty easy to get into. On the surface it’s just a rock album, but there’s some layers to it. I think there’s plenty of things to discover that keep it exciting through multiple listens. We wanted it to be a thrill ride; it gets dark, it gets fast, you catch your breath and then something else happens!
Reach is a personal favourite, a little nostalgic of certain bands from the nineties – how did this one come to be, and what does it represent?
Reach is about having a second chance with someone from your past and bringing them back into your life, and then you start to remember all the reasons that you shouldn’t. We thought the message would be clever to bury within an upbeat song that has a nostalgic summertime feel to it.
How do you decide whether to take things in a heavy or intimate direction with a new track – the weight of Time, for example, or the softness of The Worst?
We can be two bands in one! I think we can display our refined chaos and fury with our guitar solos and our double kicks, but also show off how we can build from a groove at a slower tempo and still make it exciting throughout.
It’s whatever mood we’re in, I suppose. The speedy songs definitely play to our strengths as musicians, but the ballads provide some contrast and tend to highlight our lyrics and song-writing abilities.
With the Episode 1 reference – are future episodes / albums already written, planned, or are you just leaving the playing field open?
We had close to 90 songs already written before stepping into the studio, so yes we have plans for more! We have been playing a few songs from Episode 2 at our live shows, so our fans are getting a hint of what’s to come.
Despite the obvious hard-rock sound and style, are there some unexpected influences any of you bring to the table, and in what ways do these show in your music?
The three of us come from different places musically. Mike is from prog rock and Albert is mostly metal, so we can find a few places to go with our tunes. I tend to stay within the lines of hard rock, but you can find some great inspiration elsewhere.
What influences me the most is seeing acoustic singer/songwriters and local bands playing their songs, especially newer acts starting out. There’s an energy and confidence there that restores the music magic for me.
What’s the hard rock scene like in Minnesota (pre or post Covid of course), and what can we look forward to from a live show from the band?
Minnesota is a great state for music, there’s tons of awesome musicians here across many genres! Every style of music has equal footing here, so I wouldn’t say that hard rock is anyone’s primary focus. But there’s so much respect for original acts that we feel we are getting included in on the fun.
Live music came back a bit earlier this summer, but I’m seeing the lesser established groups starting to get back into clubs recently which is great to see. We just had a show a couple weeks ago in Hopkins and it was amazing!
I think our music translates well when played live. As a three piece it takes some planning to cover all the parts on the record, but I think our fans appreciate the slightly different take on these songs. The music tends to be a bit more dynamic and dramatic when we play it in front of an audience, so it’s a different experience and allows us to convey these songs on a different level.
What’s the best piece of advice you were ever given as a musician?
There’s no rules to this stuff, there’s no exam you have to pass, your style is your own, your music is going to mean something to someone.
Is there anything else we should know?
We have many plans to keep building on this momentum, so follow us on social media or our website to see what we’re doing next!
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