Shroud Eater's Jean Saiz and Janette Valentine Put Metal in Its Place
Janette: Being able to download music and not having to physically purchase music anymore takes away from one of the most important parts of the listening process. Listening to a record you purchased while handling the cover and delving into the lyrics, the artwork and photos is part of what completes the experience as a whole. Something that not only "looks" cool but involves you physically is most gratifying. I am very grateful, as is Felipe, that Jean is a talented artist and has killer ideas when it comes to design. The artwork needs to jive with the music in order to complete the whole story.
Touring. Let's talk touring. This past jaunt on the road aside, what are your dreams and aspirations on the road?
Jean: Touring! Only the road is real! I love touring. I wish we could do more. Even playing shitty shows on the road, it's all about chalking it up to the ups and downs of being in a band. Nothing better than playing a really rad show in a place you've never been, to people who've never heard of you, and they walk away smiling, excited and with arms full of merch. For future touring plans, we definitely want to get out across the U.S. and do a full tour -- we're planning right now for a West-Coast/Southern tour which will be a cool trip. Touring abroad is something we hope to be able to accomplish soon. The goal really is to do as much as we can given the time and money we have (or usually don't have).
Janette: "The road is fucking hard, the road is fucking tough." Let's see, meeting awesome people along the way, as well as knowing that people you don't know have been listening to your music and better yet, people buying your music and shirts is certainly awesome. Touring is equal parts fun, hard work and patience. Some shows are better than others, some people nicer than others. But it's a fucking trip and when it's good, it's good. And we're looking forward to the West Coast tour that's in the works. We'll be broke as shit when we return but it's the sacrifice ya gotta make.
"The Star and the Serpent"
What are your thoughts and/or opinions on this archaic world we live in? Forgive me if I can't get over the horse that you girls make a righteous racket that should unnerve the "boy's club" of metal; and rightly so. The playing field has changed. How much more do you want it to change?
Jean: I want the playing field to change so much that no one will have to ask "So what's it like being a girl and playing heavy music?" I want it to be like "This band is awesome," not "this band is awesome for girls." I hope to see that change in my lifetime.
Jan: The playing field has changed and more women are doing cool shit in music, be it metal, doom, punk, black metal, etc... Too bad for the dudes and chicks that disregard a band simply based on appearance or gender. And to the dude-bro with arms crossed over, inspecting my pedals, gear and technique, "You're pretty good for a girl" is not a compliment, brah. Just sayin'.
On that note, what is next for Shroud Eater? Tell me about Dead Ends.
Jean: Dead Ends seems to be the point where the three of us finally aligned to create a more cohesive collection of songs. Janette and I had a more thoughtful approach to songwriting, and it's really interesting, in the end, how things come together. I think we are equally satisfied with the outcome and this EP kinda serves as a springboard for our upcoming full-length in terms of writing, vocals, lyrics and mood. We've already started working on new songs and have been incorporating them into our live set and they have been going across well.
We're going to be recording in early October for an upcoming split we're doing with Junior Bruce. I'll be doing all the art for both sides of the record as well, so I'm looking forward to that. We're in the nascent stages of planning a West Coast and semi-U.S. tour for February of next year with Orbweaver. In the midst of all that, we are planning stuff out for our next full length, so as usual we're keeping busy!