Well, the process of beginning recording all the way through until holding the record in our hand took about a year. We self tracked the entire thing, so we were able to take our time. After mixing and finding a home for it in Crown And Throne we then had to wait on vinyl manufacturing. Nevertheless, we’re a band who likes to stay active and did so during the entire process - playing live as much as we’re able and have already written new songs we are gearing up to record for a few upcoming split 7”s.
2.In April you had released a new album, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?
The material on Parasitic Twin was definitely more far reaching than our first record. I wouldn’t call it experimental, but we had already established the framework of our sound on our first record, so there was less restraint with PT to stay glued to a particular niche sound. The main goal was to build tension and intensity by all the means we are able - whether that meant playing fast, slow, quiet, heavy, etc - but have it still all fit together as a cohesive album. I have always been the song writer in the band, but the other members made contributions on PT that I feel gives the album a lot more weight and depth.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?
The 2016 election and it’s lead up definitely played into and influenced some of the lyrics. But, I didn’t want to beat that topic over the head, especially since I knew the presidency was about to create lyrical fodder for the next 4 years at least. I broadly touch on themes I have in the past such as isolation, false idols (both literal and hypothetical), and servitude - But I also chose to write about certain things more head on. For instance, songs about circumcision (and it’s subconscious practice in controlling western societal norms), the American military’s use of class warfare as a recruitment tool, and euthanasia and insistence of it’s place in civilized society. We also have a song called “No Irish Need Apply” which is a pro immigration anthem where I do my best to juxtapose the anti Irish mentalities of the mid 19th century, and the intentions of Trump and his bootlickers in regards to their baseless attempts to throttle immigration.
I consider Hive to be a political band - almost every song we have written has a socio-political slant, though it’s not something that is put above the music per se. Being the lyricist/vocalist in a band gives me a rare platform and a captive audience, so I see it as mortal sin to waste it with hollow content to just fit a mold (dark, aggro, mysterious, etc). We make sure our content is accessible via lyrics in our releases, lyric sheets on our table at shows, and making ourselves available face to face for anyone who wants to know more.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Hive'?
Personally, the word Hive brings to mind themes of isolation and protectionism. These are characteristics I would be happy to have someone equate to our band in one way or another.
5.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Our intention for our live shows is to be perceived as calculated and imposing. We try to keep our sets at the 25 minute mark, with little to no stops or hesitation. There is no political rambling, nor scene glad handing. Big amps, big drums, intense volume. We are who we are and try not to disappoint.
6.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
We stay as active as we are able. As members, we’re not a young band and all have responsibilities at home which can’t be ignored (spouses, children, careers). As such, we will never be a full time touring band. That being said, right now we’re focusing on playing regionally as much as possible (beginning with our native Midwestern US). This summer we will be playing Appleton WI for the first time, as well as playing Northern Isolation Fest in Duluth MN.
7.The new album was released on 'Crown & Throne Ltd.', are you happy with the support they have given you so far?
Yes, Garth has been great. He’s very much like us - in his hardcore twilight years and focusing on his involvement simply for the love of the music. We had no “terms and conditions” going in. We just wanted to work with someone who was excited about what we’re doing and was in touch with the DIY esthetic of playing hardcore. He made producing the record easy and has supported us in all ways he is able, which is all we can hope for.
8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of crust punk and d beat?
The response so far has been positive, though we are still largely unknown. People have seemed to understand and appreciate the blending of influences we try to carry, but still read us as a crusty hardcore band. Our reach has largely just been in the US thus far, but I’m hoping we can hit nerves in Europe, UK and Japan specifically - the birthplaces of most of our biggest influences. It’s obviously much easier for bands nowadays, even just having a Bandcamp page, versus when the four of us started playing music and had to tape trade and use calling cards just to get our name in front of people on other continents.
9.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
To be honest, no expectations. I can see us focusing on an album full of fast, 1-minute ragers…I can also see us trying to fill an entire side of one LP with a single song.
10.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
I would say when we first started writing and forming our sound our biggest influences were bands like His Hero Is Gone, Cursed, Wolfbrigade, Gauze - a good combination of US dark hardcore, Swedish d-beat, and Japanese distortion. I think we’ve refined things a bit since then and found our own footprint, but I still consider all of those bands huge influences on my writing today.
Lately I’ve been listening to Civilized - Chopping Block, Full Of Hell - Trumpeting Ecstacy, Interment - Scent Of The Buried, Cripple Bastards - Nero In Metastasi, and Sect - s/t.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
Outside of our day to day lives we all stay pretty busy with music. Paradise plays in a death/thrash band called Antiverse (antiverse.bandcamp.com), and is also performing with Disembodied and Martyr AD at this years This Is Hardcore Fest, Emma plays in a queercore band called Contentious (contentious.bandcamp.com), Duffy is part of the 113 Composers Collective (113collective.com) and also performs with the noise duo Shield Your Eyes (shieldyoureyes.bandcamp.com), and I stay pretty busy writing for Hive as well as my two solo bands Prey For Death (preyingfordeath.bandcamp.com) and Prison Shank (prisonshank.bandcamp.com).
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Thank you for the interview and the interest in us. Keep hardcore underground.