ARTISTdirect editor Rick Florino recently conducted an interview with 10 YEARS drummer Brian Vodinh. An excerpt from the chat follow.
ARTISTdirect: "Division" feels like a step up from "The Autumn Effect" [the band's 2005 breakthrough debut], but it still maintains the signature elements of your sound.
Brian: That was the main thing we wanted to do with this record. "The Autumn Effect" was a nice representation of where we were at three years ago. We've grown up a lot since then. I feel like we've matured in every single creative and musical way possible. We finished touring behind "The Autumn Effect", and we were like, "Let's write some songs and do a record really quickly." We didn't think, "This is our second album. We had a little bit of success with 'The Autumn Effect', and now we really have to kick some ass." However, we quickly realized that it wasn't going to be a fast, in-and-out process. That's why it took us a good year of writing, demoing and recording to realize this vision. It was honestly the most difficult process that this band's ever gone through. It almost broke us up.
ARTISTdirect: It seems like there was a lot of pressure, because you guys came off big tours with bands like DEFTONES and KORN, and your first record did really well. All eyes were on you.
Brian: Yeah, and every day we had management calling, and we had the record company calling. All we would hear is, "We need hits, guys. Listen to the radio, look at the charts, we need hits!" We were just sitting there pulling our hair out. First off, you don't sit down and say, "Oh, I feel like writing a hit today." That's not going to happen, unless you're the dude from NICKELBACK. I don't know how he does it [Laughs]. A lot of the writing process was really difficult. Not only were we dealing with the pressures from the record company, management and different people, but we were also dealing with each other. We were challenging each other so much. That's the reason we named the album "Division". It's a title that sums up this album. We literally became more divided as friends and band mates than we've ever been. The biggest problem was that we stopped listening to each other's opinions. I didn't even want to hear anybody else's opinion, and I know all the other guys felt the exact same way. Everybody in the band is so drastically different from each other. When it came time to really buckle down and write this record, we all had a different vision. It really took us a while to finally get on the same page. When we did, we were actually able to get stuff done. It literally took the entire process.
ARTISTdirect: Given that split, how did the writing actually work?
Brian: We tried working at home in Knoxville. We were writing as a band a lot, and it was a really tough environment. Jesse's girlfriend had just had a baby, and it was their first child. So he had a lot of distractions at home. We tried working together, and a lot of times, it would just result in arguments. So eventually, Jesse and I just made three or four trips out to Los Angeles. We just crashed with one of our managers, and a lot of the foundations for the songs came about from Jesse and I finding refuge in a different environment with less distractions. We probably came up with 30 or 40 skeletons for songs there. We would bring those ideas home, and basically just go over them with everybody.
Read the entire interview at www.artistdirect.com.