GENRE IS DEAD! Interview With Knox Colby And Will Wagstaff Of Enforced

GID: Once the album is out, have you guys thought about how you’ll spend the rest of the year if touring doesn’t return?

KC: Well, we’re all contractors and we all have full-time jobs so in terms of work and stuff 2020 wasn’t anything new. Nothing stopped for us, thankfully, and I guess if there’s nothing going on, there’s nothing going on. We do have a few irons in the fire for potentially touring in the fall if that’s possible, but if not, I plan on continuing to work and playing with my dog.

WW: I would say we’re not enormous fans of livestreams even though that’s the popular alternative to doing shows now. I think our music is most impactful to watch in a live setting. We talked about this a little bit. If we really can’t tour or do live shows then maybe we could do some more videography, like another music video. I think we all like doing music videos, they’ve been fun. It’s given us a different creative outlet. Taking a look at what other video assets we can deliver would be a cool thing. And just pray to the gods of metal that we can get back on the road sometime soon.

GID: Yeah, it’s fun, but not the same. I was reading an interview you guys did with The Thanks List where you talked about different albums and artists you love or grew up with. And you guys mention a lot of artists people wouldn’t expect like Brian Eno, Prince, Phill Collins, and Queen. I’m curious to know, how have these artists influenced you or made an impact on you as a musician?

KC: With Brian Eno, that’s been a lifelong obsession. I can’t remember a time where I haven’t listened to Brian Eno. As I’ve grown up, the amount of introspection his work forces me to do helps get my head right to write lyrics. I’ll usually write lyrics to some of his work. Or even trying to phrase things or trying to find the right words – I mean I listened to Randy Newman last night! He can make you laugh and in the next song, he can make you so utterly sad. And stuff like Swans I find is incredible.

WW: I just love pop music in general. Something those artists share is they know hooks. They know rich parts. In some aspects, it’s very mechanical and thought out. Then you have someone like Phil Collins, who’s obviously such a creative that he can write a pop album, but it’s gonna be a bit all over the place. Musically, I just love to be able to have a hook. I think that’s a very important thing to have. I guess the other thing is I love the production cart of shows. Madonna’s live show is obviously insane. It was just crazy! I don’t think we could ever do something like that.

KC: Yes, you can!

WW: I don’t mean this as a dig at all, but I think a lot of bands in the underground scene don’t focus enough on the live performance and what they can do with that as another means of expressing their art. I think that’s something I take away from those types of artists.

GID: That’s a good point. It’s interesting that you think about the production of shows and one artist that came to mind who always puts a lot of thought into their stage shows is Nine Inch Nails.  

WW: Oh, hell yeah!

KC: I thought you were gonna say KISS.

GID: Yeah! That’s another great one considering how larger than life they are.

KC: Yeah, they put everything into it. If they never put out any albums, they’d probably be just as successful cause the live show is insane. Same with Slayer. The sheer amount of fire and heat you feel coming off the stage is shocking, to say the least.

GID: There’s something exhilarating about those shows with larger-than-life productions. The Nine Inch Nails show I went to nearly blinded me with all the lights, but it was an amazing time I’ll never forget.

KC: It doesn’t even have to be necessarily visual; it can be done sonically. I lived in Taiwan for a year and when I was there Boris from Japan played a random one-off show. Me and three other friends went, and it was so loud people were throwing up. Their physical bodies could not handle how loud it was.

WW: That’s like when My Bloody Valentine first came back in 2008. I went to that show at the National [in Virginia] and people were literally getting down on the floor into the fetal position. It’s crazy.

KC: You won’t forget that!

GID: Kill Grid is one of 2021’s most anticipated albums, but what albums are you guys looking forward to this year?

KC: Well, I’m helping a friend, David Leonard, work on his new album. He’s in this band Copperhead and he’s been working on this for a few years and I hope he finishes it this year. That would be great to see.

WW: We’ve got some buddies that are now on Century too, this band Sanguisugabogg. I know their record is gonna come out soon. I will be the first to admit I haven’t done a whole heck of a lot of research on stuff on the horizon.

GID: It’s also kind of hard to say because we don’t know what 2021 is gonna look like and there are already delays with the vinyl pressing so I feel some artists are holding back on release dates.

KC: Yeah, and then you have surprise releases like Gatecreeper’s An Unexpected Reality, so I might not even know what’s about to happen.

WW: Genocide Pact has a record coming out, but I don’t think they’ve released any information about it. I saw Creeping Death were in the studio.

KC: Dead Heat’s album is close to getting done I think, if not already done.

WW: There are some good releases coming up, but I think you’re right that people are a little bit apprehensive to do anything. We fell a little bit into that category too and then we decided we gotta get on with it.

Kill Grid, the new album from Enforced, comes out March 12th via Century Media Records. Pre-order the album here. To keep up with the latest Enforced news, follow the band on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


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Ashley Perez Hollingsworth

Ashley Perez is a freelance music journalist based in Chicago. Her work has appeared on AXS, Chicago Innerview, New City, The Millions, and Illinois Entertainer. She also runs her own music blog at Radio Not Found. Some of her favorite bands include Nirvana, The Cure, Muse, Creeper, and Green Day.

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