State Faults is a band that hardly needs any introduction on this site. Coming off of a 6-year hiatus, they’ve received universal acclaim for their newest album, Clairvoyant. Lead singer and guitarist Johnny Calvert-Andrew was kind enough to correspond with me about their comeback. Enjoy, y’all.
Slex: First, I wanted to address the hiatus. What brought you guys back together? Is it safe to say you guys are here to stay?
Jonny Calvert-Andrew: Well we had tried a couple times getting together and playing the songs but the spark wasn’t really there. Last year Noisey published an article listing R/D as like a top ten hardcore record of the decade or something, and that got us looking around and realizing people were still listening and waiting. We each got the itch, went into the practice space again around September or October of last year and this time the spark caught flame, it felt like we were a brand new band.
S: Seeing as how you guys are a 3 piece now, how has that changed the dynamic? Did it make songwriting more difficult, or less?
JCA: It certainly changed our writing dynamic. I think it forced us to be more rhythmically interesting you know? Our older songs more or less relied on dual guitar parts for dynamics. Switching to one guitar, I had to make the riffs interesting haha. It was way more fun honestly instead of having to come up with rhythm and lead parts. This time around we’re all kind of playing lead in our own instruments.
S: How long have you guys been working on the songs for Clairvoyant? Were some around before or around the hiatus, or are they all relatively new?
JCA: I would say six of the songs were pretty solidly written in 2015, and the rest were just riff ideas and demos. When we started jamming again we refined all of the songs, and I rewrote all the lyrics.
S: Clairvoyant is such a perfect title track in that it really encapsulates everything the album is about musically and emotionally-was it a kind of North Star that informed the rest of the album, or a product of other songs that came first?
JCA: Thank you so much! Clairvoyant was actually the last full song written for the album, the first song we wrote back from hiatus, and that I think pulled us to making it the title track. It’s so different from the rest of the songs too. Michael and I were briefly in a doom metal band during the hiatus, so it was cool to bring that kind of energy to this band.
S: What would you say is the song that you guys are most proud of, and why?
JCA: Oh boy. Haha it’s so hard to pick, I love every single song on this record. I definitely remember being so stoked on Olive Tree when I wrote it on a solo writing sesh though.
S: Are there any bands that really influence you or heavily influenced Clairvoyant?
JCA: At the time in 2015 I was deeply into Mars Volta, so that may have some influence. Comadre, Loma Prieta, Pallbearer, Krallice, The Cure, At the Drive-In, This will Destroy You are all bands we dig a lot.
S: If there was one artist you would want people to check out in 2019, who would it be?
JCA: Im gonna take this opportunity to shout out Quiet Fear, a latinx screamo band we got to play with for five days, who absolutely rip. They are full of passion and energy! And they make me dance every time I see them.
Gouge Away is another band that is absolutely crushing it, Burnt Sugar is a masterpiece, can’t wait to play with them.
S: Lastly, seeing as how the decade is drawing to a close, what are some of your favorite releases of the decade?
JCA: Crash of Rhinos- Distal
Loma Prieta- Life/Less (IV rules too)
This Will Destroy You- Another Language
Adam Thomas is the homie! He just came to the show and was kind enough to take pics. Our bands played together back in the day. He seems to be crushing it, he’s married and taking photos for a living!
Thank you for taking the time to interview us, we really appreciate it!