When do you feel like Set it Off really blew up as a band?
I’m a very harsh self-critic so I don’t think we will have ‘blown up’ as a band until we are selling out arenas haha. But I do think we started to really gain traction and notoriety during the 2013 Vans Warped Tour. Since that tour, our band seems to really be thriving and it’s very exciting.
The song “Why Worry” has an upbeat Christian song feel, was it intended to be like that or did it just happen? What was the hardest song to write on Duality?
It honestly just started to happen, the song started being written with the opening stomps/claps and “whoas” and we immediately got a gospel vibe from that. Then the chord progression came together when Brandon [Paddock], Dan [Clermont], and I were working on it and the “Why”s just busted out and we realized we have ourselves a gospel/rock/Michael Jackson/NSync-Mash up of inspiration. It was an awesome day!
Who are your major influences on your music?
There are so many but I’ll try and keep the list as short as possible. I grew up with a heavy pop/R&B influence so Usher, Destiny’s Child, Boyz II Men, NSync, and Justin Timberlake are on that list. I also grew up with my mom and dad playing oldies songs so Tower of Power, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Earth Wind and Fire, and Stevie Wonder are huge influences as well. I loved pop/rock/punk music so definitely Fall Out Boy, Panic! At The Disco, My Chemical Romance, and New Found Glory. I also love current pop so I love Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Jessie J, Maroon 5, One Republic. There are so many honestly but that’s what I can think of off the top of my head.
Some say the album is poppy but also angry at the same time, what made you decide to do it that way, or was that not intended?
Nothing was ever really intended, if I’m being honest. We’d start writing a song, feel out what the general vibe/mood was and then run with it. We just wanted to write really good songs that we and everyone else would love. I’m a happy person, I’m an angry person. I’m innocent, and I’m corrupted. We show you every side of us on Duality.
On Duality you worked with William Beckett as well as Jason Lancaster (Ex Mayday Parade), how was it working with major artists on this album?
It was an incredible experience. They are such professional, talented and kind people so it was a complete pleasure to have them on the record. Their voices fit their respective featured songs so well that we just had to reach out – and they both gladly accepted the offer and NAILED their parts.
What is the meaning behind the new hand symbol circling around social media?
We have created a symbol we affectionately refer to as the Duality Diamond. It’s essentially our modern take on the yin yang. We want people to show us they are human with us, so we decided to create a hand symbol that replicated the illustrated symbol itself. So we created a diamond with our hands, brought our index fingers down to divide it in half and realized it directly replicated our symbol so we ran with it. It’s so cool to see people throwing it up at shows.
What was the different about writing Duality vs writing Cinematics?
When we were going into the process of Cinematics, we had a specific sound we were aiming to achieve and although it was fun to write minor key, eerie, orchestral based rock, It put our mindset in a box to where we HAD to write that style. Going into this process we just wrote music we enjoyed and knew we would love playing live and that everyone else would love as well.
Already Duality has made some chart topping numbers, how does that make you guys feel?
We feel extremely blessed and excited to know that all of this hard work, the thing we are putting our heart and souls into is finally getting some real recognition, and that people can get behind Set It Off and what we stand for. It’s an incredible feeling to watch a dream come together.
Right now you are on tour with Black Veil Brides and Falling in Reverse, hows that going so far?
SO AMAZING! Everyone on the tour has been so nice and an absolute blast to hang out with. We’ve already made so many friends. Andy Biersack is a hilarious person and Ronnie Radke is my food buddy, he tells me about places nearby that I HAVE to try. It feels like a big family on this tour and not to mention the crowds are massive and extremely active and fun. We’re having the time of our lives. If you’re reading this and a date is near you then don’t miss out on this tour!
Is it hard to lead your personal lives and well as be so active with fans?
Not at all! This band is my life, this band exists because of The Dream Catchers and they are also a part of my life. We all sustain each other and it’s incredible to hug and talk to everyone after we play our set and after the show. I’m excited to continue to watch this family grow.
Why did you name the album Duality? What symbolism lies behind it?
We actually named it before we started the album. In the past, Set It Off was very pop and then turned very dark and we wanted the best of both worlds and were, at first, going to actively pursue an even division of sounds. Sometimes it just happened naturally but we abandoned the idea to force a concept and just focused on good songs and surprisingly enough, we got exactly what we subconsciously planned for, a musical and lyrical embodiment of the ideal of duality.
Is there anything you would like your fans to know?
Yes, you have one life to tackle and seize everything you’ve ever wanted. There are impossible feats you can achieve, if you work hard enough at it. Never think “Oh that can’t be me”, think “Why not me?” I truly believe every person has their destiny and I expect you to find yours and make it a reality. Love you tons and we will see you on tour! <|>
Photos By: Sam Madnick
Feature Photo by; Sedition1216