Interview: Shane Blay – Wovenwar

Wovenwar live @ The Ritz, Manchester
Wovenwar live @ The Ritz, Manchester

Thoroughly into their first European tour, American metalcore group Wovenwar are set to make an immediate impression on the UK crowd in Manchester. I sat down with frontman Shane Blay to discuss touring, musical influences and the bonds you make with people on tour.

I’m James with One Media Group and I’m here with Shane from Wovenwar, how are you doing?

Shane: I’m good man. Tired from the ferry though!

You’re well into the tour now, how’s it been?

Shane: It’s been frickin’ amazing. The In Flames crew have been the most accommodating people and just friendly dudes, like we go out for beers all the time on tour. Obviously the shows have been huge so that aspect of it has been awesome!

And you’re touring with While She Sleeps as well, a rising British band. What are they like on the road?

Shane: They’re like our brothers now. We’re sharing a bus with them so yeah erm we’re very intimate with them haha. But yeah, they are like some of our best friends now.

Has there been any stand out dates? Any performances that have been a favourite of yours?

Shane: Ermm Cenon, France was amazing. That was probably my favourite of the tour as I got to speak only in French to the crowd and that was fun, it was something I always wanted to do. Paris was great for me as well, like seeing the city. But best show so far would have to be Cenon, France I think, it was insane!

Because this is really the first European tour for Wovenwar, as you did tour with Black Label Society in the US. Is it easy touring? Or is it new experiences for the band?

Shane: Well everyone in the band are super veterans of touring. I mean As I Lay Dying toured for ten years, Oh Sleeper toured for eight years and me and Nick’s band before all that toured forever too haha, so shows aren’t really a scary thing anymore. Well accumulating to being a full time singer has been a huge thing for me personally, I have to pay attention to what I eat and how much I drink.

Haha bit unforunate there!

Shane: Well I drink like a fish anyway, but I have to not go to the bars and scream and whatever.

The first record, your début, it’s been out for a few months now. How’s the reception been?

Shane: Everything I’ve seen people are stoked on it. There’s a lot of “oh it’s not heavy enough” and I get a lot of flack for not growling and doing goblins and ghouls sounds, but I don’t really care haha. They got me because that’s what I do, I sing.

When it came to the writing, did you guys take influence from your old bands or did you want to strive for a unique sound for Wovenwar?

Shane: When it began they didn’t really know who was going to be the singer. So they just wrote like a wide spectrum of stuff and I was on Warped tour last year and then they asked me to do it. So they sent me like a buttload of songs and I picked the ones that I thought I sounded good on, so that’s sort of how the sound got moulded. And then after Warped I flew out and got to start writing guitar stuff. But I don’t think we catered or got influenced by our past stuff, we definitely wanted to have those fans that carried over to the new band. So we kept some of our elements alive!

Your first UK dates was Reading & Leeds Festivals in the summer. How was that? As they aren’t really like an indie festival isn’t it? I mean, they aren’t a metal festival.

Shane: Exactly and I think we went down well. Our booking agent came out and loved the show and I talked to a bunch of fans that night, so it seemed to be awesome! The funny thing is that we played in Barfly, Camden a couple of days later and it was just insane. It was one of my favourite shows of my life. It was tiny obviously, but it was so much fun!

And after Reading & Leeds, do you have any other UK festival plans for next year?

Shane: Not yet, it’s too early to tell.

And really my final question is what’s next for you guys after this tour?

Shane: We’ve got two months off and then early next year we have stuff that I can’t talk about who it’s with and everything, we’ve got some US stuff planned. My plan is after these two months off to start writing new stuff and get ready for record two. Now that we’ve established it, I want to get the ball rolling and get a discography going.

Brilliant! Thanks a lot mate

Shane: No problem!

Wovenwar’s self titled studio record is available now via Metal Blade Records.