Getting Personal with Syracuse, New York's Trench
>> Trench makes a stop in Rochester NY’s Vineyard Community Space on Friday, Feb. 23rd along with Greet Death and California Cousins for an unforgettable night. But before the thrashing, soothing, three-time circuit breaker tripping festivities began, I got to meet up with the Trench boys at Dogtown for a quick verbal jaunt about life and music.
Do you feel like you fit into a specific sound/genre of music?
Chris: Not really. I’d say we’re a rock band. Ron: Whatever music we write, is the music we write. As long as it’s moody and cool, I’m down.
Dan: I feel like we’ve got a little something for everybody.
Chris: It’s interesting to hear about what people connect with in terms of the album, too.
Ron: That’s true. I haven’t heard anyone point out a specific song and say it’s the head of the pack like “this is the fuckin’ song.” There’s been a lot of different answers. So they’re either all okay, or just meh.
What do you most enjoy about being on stage, and what’s the thought process behind orchestrating such visually elaborate sets?
Chris: As far as being on stage: I just like playing. That’s where I feel the most comfortable, honestly.
Chris: Yeah like immediately before, I feel an ecstatic level of nervousness, but as soon as we start playing, that’s when I feel the best.
Dan: Yeah, we just let go of it, and get lost in the moment.
Ron: Completely agree. That’s when I give the least amount of shits about anything.
Dan: Plus it’s really cool when we flow as a band, too. This band’s been the best when it comes to like flowing, and working together on stage. Ron: And the lights are fuckin’ moody and cool. I like it.
What bands do you dream of performing with?
Chris: Heartside. I don’t think they’re active anymore, but they’re awesome. They’re from Maryland - really good alt/emo.
Who have been some of your favorite bands to perform/tour with?
Ron: Greet Death. They’re one of my favorite bands to perform with. We’re on tour with them right now. They’re one of my favorite bands anyway. They’re so fuckin’ sick.
Chris: Word. Yeah, Greet Death and Crash the Calm.
Could you share some stories about the motivation and inspiration behind creating your album 'Ritual Love'? What do you hope listeners take from it?
Chris: I don’t think anything motivated it, per se, it was kind of like a collection of thoughts that I’ve had for a long time that I’ve never written down. It’s kind of a hard thing to formalize (lyrically). It was cool to spread it out over those 8 or 9 songs and see it from a different perspective. You know you can visualize something in your head for a lifetime and it goes nowhere. So it was kind of cathartic to put it down.
Dan: When I joined up with this band, I kind of felt the music where as with other projects, it was mostly all for fun. I felt like I have a good connection with it in the sense of emotional drive. Went through a lot of stuff in the last two years. So just listening to it all myself, it really helped me out. So, I think this music is something people can relate to through hard times, through good times.
Chris: Some people would come up and talk to me after a set, and have had the same experiences I’ve had. [They’d talk about things] like family, drug addiction, stuff like that. And it’s cool because people don’t really talk about stuff like that, especially when so many people are affected by it.
Who are some of your musical influences?/Who are you guys listening to at the moment?
Chris: (jokingly) I don’t listen to music, so..
Ron: My taste changes. I’m, like, all over the place all the time. I’m only listening to hip hop at the moment. Vince Staples, Danny Brown - shit like that. I don’t know if it’s influencing my writing, or this music per se, but it’s what I’m listening to right now. Dan: Uh, Failure, and um….just Failure.
When you’re not working on music or performing, what does the average day in the life look like for you all?
Ron: I work at a restaurant. So I’m cooking a lot of food - all day erryday. It’s actually a bike shop, and a cafe/restaurant. Chris: Honestly lately, if we’re not touring, it still mostly revolves around music. When we’re not touring, we’re still writing or planning. Ron: Yeah, that’s true. To build on that: literally every decision I make - my job, how I spend my money, etc.- is motivated by how it affects what our band is doing.
Dan: A lot of video games, too.
Ron: True that.
What are some of the weirdest mishaps/hiccups you’ve run into while touring/performing?
Ron: Bob walked in on Logan (guitarist of Greet Death) shitting one time, in like the sketchiest bathroom at an already sketchy venue. I might even have a video on my phone. Haha, the lights were flickering, there was a TV/VCR combo that was facing the toilet and was playing a really old James Bond movie; it looked like a scene out of Saw 6. The door never closed; there was just a constant flickering. Logan doesn’t remember it though, so no harm, no foul.
Chris: Other than that, just casually falling on stage. Haven’t done that in a while.
What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you on stage?
Dan: Equipment malfunction, mostly.
Ron: Any time I make any mistake that I think other people can notice, I’m embarrassed. Chris: Nothing super catastrophic. I might stutter but I think I’m getting better.
Are there any songs that are technically or emotionally difficult for you to perform?
Chris: Yeah, we just don’t play them.
Ron: I mean none of the shit we write is like technically proficient - we don’t shred a lot. But anytime I’m playing a solo with a delay pedal, I’m always nervous that it’s gonna do something funny, or I’m gonna be off time.
Chris: I think with what we’ve done so far, most of the music has been intentional, and the intention hasn’t been to be flashy. Ron: Yeah, it all goes back to making vibey, moody music.
What’s your favorite thing about being a part of the local music scene?
Ron: Seeing the support grow. In the past year, we’ve played a lot of shows that no one has been at or cared about which is understandable because we were still just coming up, grinding. So playing around here and seeing familiar faces come back and enjoy it and talk to us about it or shout us out, it’s humbling.
Dan: Yeah just building on that, just seeing the scene grow was cool, even during times where [the music scene] seemed stagnant or ‘hit or miss’. There was always support, and not just for us. Its been nice to see bands like Carpool, Druse, Cali Cousins, Lily Grave.
Ron: True. Yeah, a lot of good bands come out of this region.
Chris: I think specifically in Syracuse, I feel like the community is stronger than its been in a long time. Especially in alternative music. I feel like there wasn’t a foundation for a while for bands like Lily Grave, Outside Voices, etc. that are consistent in being active, and genuinely contributing. It doesn’t feel like a competition. Everyone’s moreso contributing in building a community.
What’s currently in the works for the band (if you can say)?
Ron: When does this article come out?
Nala: 48 hours.
Chris: BIG THINGS.
Ron: We can obviously say we’re writing. And we plan on being very active in the near future.
What advice would you give to new bands hoping to get their start in, and be successful in the music industry?
Ron: Just stop playing music (I’m kidding).
Dan: Just keep playing and keep practicing.
Ron: Do what the fuck you want to do. Don’t make music that caters to whoever. Just fit in where you fit in. Do what you want. Don’t do it for any other reason.
Dan: If you’re doing music for any other reason than yourself, you’re going to be very disappointed.
Ron: It’s already fairly thankless, so you might as well do it for yourself.
Be sure to check out their latest album 'Ritual Love,' and give them a follow on Instagram (@trench_ny) and Facebook for more updates on their remaining show dates on the Greet Death tour, and more. <<
Listen to Trench HERE!
Connect with Trench on: