YA Interview with Matt Adis:
Does religion play a particular role in Salvation? Despite the band name and some of your imagery, I get the sense you aren’t always referring to Christian doctrine in a literal sense.
Religion does play a large role in Salvation, but is most definitely not the single driving force. Not necessarily Christianity, but any belief system. It’s the manmade quality of any core belief that I find ingenious and at the same time, terrifying. Whether it be a safety net to ensure an afterlife, reincarnation; an “atheist” or “agnostic” point of view – all is nothing. Salvation is self-realization.
Where does the title “Of Unforgiving Wind” originate? in contrast to the 7″, the LP feels darker, more nihilistic in both sound and presentation yet contains a certain mindfulness, or dare I say, a sensitivity to your approach that is perhaps not as present in the earlier material. What thoughts and feelings were occurring to you while writing and recording the full length?
The title of the album came about one day while writing. I felt it defined the overall sound and concept of the record, thematically. The 7″ was one of my first actual recording experiences, and I was not very knowledgeable. A learning experience. I put a great amount of time into the LP, and focused heavily on my vision of the final product. Working with Will Killingsworth is a pleasure. He never really throws an opinion at you, you just have to work it out yourself. I admire that. The booklets and packaging turned out amazing. I’m quite pleased with it. Are there things I would change? Probably. That comes with time. There was a lot going on in my head while writing the album. An unreal amount of disdain, although that never seems to cease.
You have a reputation as a violent performer. On a recent occasion in New York City, your set was cut short after you were rushed to the hospital covered in blood. Do you ever attempt to rationalize this aggression or does it come from some place deeper?
Violence is only natural. I am not fond of live performances, and crowds are always a pain. There’s no need to rationalize.
PHOTOS: RYAN FOSTER
You’ve made a considerable variety of ‘zines in recent months showcasing your drawings and collages. What, if any, beyond the fact these ideas radiate from you–is the connection between the visual works you create with regards to Salvation’s music?
People need to make their own observations. I’ve always felt explaining visual images is an utter waste of time. I draw how I perceive.
How do you summarize your outlook on life? Do you believe there is a means of understanding one’s self beyond the well-regulated social constructs of day to day living?
One’s surroundings totally come into play. Truth is – nothing matters, and that’s what needs to be taken into consideration. Who lives in complete solace? The only thing we’re guaranteed from birth is death. A glimpse of reality.
There is a fresh, undeniable power to Salvation, yet the music contains a certain timeless element. What makes a great band memorable? Where do you see yourself fitting into the framework of music history? Are you in any sense concerned about addressing any element of nostalgia in your music?
A band’s recordings and live performances determine magnitude. Raw power and personality are key attributes to a great band. Every detail is vital. I look for something that I find powerful in all departments – musically, lyrically, structurally (especially when pertaining to records), visually. Many people start god awful bands and release trite records just so they have an excuse to go on tour. Humans flock with whatever’s hot, which leads to numerous clone bands and future dollar bin records. I can’t give an answer to how Salvation will fit into history because the band is still moving. My guess is no one will care. The nostalgia aspect of it all is more of a personal thing.
There are several rehearsal tracks floating around of demos for your next release. What is the trajectory for the band? Beyond that, what use should the concept of “development” be for a bands career? Certainly there are many bands that pride themselves on never breaking their formula and release the same record over and over. If indeed you subscribe to the idea of linear development, is it in any sense an attempt to thwart the listener from assuming they have you “pinned down”?
We tend to work at a slow pace due to conflicting schedules, but when we do get together things happen rather quickly. My mind changes rapidly, as everyone in the band knows. Our current plans are to write another album, or a longer EP. The music is moving in a much darker direction. It’s slowing down a bit, but not in the ever so popular dirge/grunge sense. Rewriting the same record never works out well. There are only a couple groups that come to mind that have managed to do so successfully, without driving that singularity into the ground. There’s always an element that sticks out in each recording, like production. Development with Salvation has all come habitually. If you want to keep your group moving, growth is necessary.
Even within Hardcore’s microcosmic scene there is a certain tendency for people to cater to status quo. Overnight an entire crop of bands will emerge all playing in the same style. Where is Hardcore at in 2009?
Hardcore in 2009, the most dull of knives. A total joke. Bands being lumped in with one another due to any kind of association. Ex-member/Members-of status. Piss poor products to uphold one’s interest for a day. Photoshop show fliers, record covers, and band logos. Everyone’s so concerned about being friends with one another and networking. Not interested.
You live in the Philadelphia suburbs, work a regular job, and support yourself. At what point does one choose between what “works” in order to maintain a stable living and the inevitable risks into unforeseen territories required to find one’s chosen path in life?
I will do what I think is best for me, no matter what the circumstances are. Stability in life is an unsolvable variable.
How do you deal with conflict? How have you changed personally since the bands inception and what were the motivating circumstances? In a general sense, are you making progress in life?
I don’t have a specific method of resolving conflict, since it depends on the situation.
I view myself as a calm individual. We don’t really have issues as a band, besides the fact that we never practice. The prime motivation of the band was to air out frustration and create records that I’d want to hear. In other words, it’s a personal device. If other people are into it, great. There are no means of reaching out. We’re not going out of our way to please anyone. I think there has definitely been progress, but our demeanor will most likely get the best of us. Disaster in life is inevitable and I’ve learned to cope.
Salvation Discography/Pressing Information
Smoke and Mirrors 7” EP Test Press (Youth Attack) Alternate cover /10
Smoke and Mirrors 7” EP (Youth Attack) White Vinyl /300
Smoke and Mirrors 7” EP Repress (Youth Attack) Blue Vinyl /88 w/ two added inserts
Live Performance 12/1/07 Cassette (Smoke and Mirrors) /75
V/A Locker Room Hard-on Cassette Compilation /? (live set)
Of Unforgiving Wind 12” LP Test Press /?
Of Unforgiving Wind 12″ LP (Youth Attack) Alternate cover, White Vinyl /100
Of Unforgiving Wind 12″ LP (Youth Attack) Purple Marble Vinyl /500