Interview w/Brian Robinson of A Wilhelm Scream
You're no stranger to Montreal and this isn't your first Pouzza Fest; so what's your favourite thing about the city, and what are you looking forward doing with your downtime this weekend in Montreal?
In all honesty, we’ve actually had some of our best shows, and best times at Foufoune’s in the past. Aside from that, touring Canada for (who knows how many) years – It’s great to come to Montreal and see how “different” and “old” a city Montreal is. Personally, being Canadian – and going to Europe on tour for the first time, I had the backwards experience of seeing old cities overseas and saying “Oh! This looks just like Montreal”. The band loves coming up here – and I’ve managed to relocate myself to MTL twice now. I’ll spend downtime at home in the West Island – the guys will probably be at the closest Belle-Pro – unless I coax them into dropping some serious cash at Lafleur’s.
Some of you guys are from Massachusetts or grew up close to the Quebec border – Did you guys cross into the province as minors to party? If so, any stories?
Well, I grew up in Southern Ontario – but, having spent so much time in Mass – I found out that heading to Montreal to drink was just a “thing to do” to go and party. I’m sure you can imagine a fresh-faced Trevor Reilly (our guitarist) Tom-Cruisin’ his way across the border to pound back Molson Goldens and get into some “le trouble” – Hopefully someone reading this will laugh at that, other than myself.
Favourite Quebec band?
Definitely not Mute. (Take THAT Etienne, hahaha). Seriously though - Dig It Up puts on one of the best shows. We played at Fouf’s and Rokos stage-dove, split his head open, went to the hospital, and came back to have beers with us. I remember the first time our singer, Nuno, saw Andrea play drums – his immediate reaction was “I feel so bad for her cymbals”. (Mute is actually pretty good).
It's been about 5 years since the release of Partycrasher, and word is you guys have been working on a new record. Anything you can tell me about what might be in the works?
We have a dropbox full of “skeletons” of songs that Trevor and I are throwing in there. There’s almost too much, actually. New stuff, re-worked songs that never quite “got there” – we even have a folder of riffs written by our old guitarist Chris Levesque… Overall, it’s going to be loud, fast, and “thrashy”
What's your outlook on the future of the record business (labels, record sales and touring)?
I think everything (at least in the realm of punk rock or any genre of music that may not get played on the radio) is that exposure will rely heavily on outlets that are provided for artists now. Social media is now the springboard to get anyone to listen to your music. I put out an EP with my other band (The Fullblast – shameless plug)… Our singer runs a label but explained to me that we could surpass all the ins/outs of dealing with a label, throw music up on sites like Spotify and just plug the shit out of it… We ended up funding our tour to South America on playing local shows and Spotify returns. In terms of selling records? It’s digital-downloads for the kids, and pressing vinyl for the fans who HAVE kids.
3 artists that get heavy play in the A Wilhelm Scream van?
Prince / Dinosaur Jr. / Rocket From The Crypt (I force the guys to listen to a ton of Sloan when we’re in Canada).
What's in store for the remainder of 2018?
We have a month over in Europe coming up in June – We’re headlining most of it, playing with an insanely good band “Darko” from the UK. After we cross the channel we play with the (awful-smelling) Austrians, Astpai. We hook up with Pennywise/Sick Of It All/Iron Reagan for a few shows – then a week of supporting Descendents to close off the tour. It’s gonna be an adventure! That’s for sure.
Merci! À bientôt!