It’s been a whirlwind year for Suicide Silence‘s Eddie Hermida, who made a highly publicized move from All Shall Perish to Suicide Silence in the aftermath of frontman Mitch Lucker‘s 2012 death. The band is off to a solid start with Hermida at the helm of their ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ album, a disc that pays proper respect to Lucker while also laying the groundwork for the band’s future.
Loudwirespoke with Hermida at the opening day of the 2014 Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival and the frontman spoke about playing this summer’s run, what it’s been like joining the band and recording the ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ album and the highly entertaining ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ video.
Check out our chat with Suicide Silence’s Eddie Hermida below.
First of all, congratulations on the record and the new ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ video that just came out. One of my favorite videos of the year.
Thank you. It was a fun video to do and it’s a very important song for us, you know what I mean? It has Mitch [Lucker]‘s lyrics on it, so to be able to perform to that song — it was a very heart touching time for me. You know what I mean?
And a very nice tribute shot at the very end of the clip…
Yes, of course. Of course, man. This whole thing is paying homage to our boy, so if it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t be here. So that’s always going to be in my memories and we will always love our friend.
I know Mitch had been working on some stuff for the new album as we’ve seen with the ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ song, but how much did you have to cover?
I had to do the whole record man. The only thing that Mitch had done was the lyrics to one song and we used them on the record as well. But he hadn’t even laid down the patterns, nothing. It was just an idea in his head at that point, so we obviously couldn’t keep that. But the song came out how it is and it’s a very awesome song.
Very good and Jason Mewes of ‘Jay and Silent Bob’ fame cameos in the video as well. How’d you guys get Jay?
It was very last minute. I like to call it ‘manager magic.’ He called the right people. He was in town for his show that he’s doing right now. They’re doing the big world tour where he’s talking about Jay and Silent Bob and he does a whole comedy act. He just so happened to be in town, we booked him, had him come out and do his part and he killed it and that part is hilarious man. I’m really happy with it.
I was not expecting that at all.
[Laughs] Right? It just kind of takes away from how crazy everything is.
Also on the new record is the track ‘Don’t Die,’ if you want to talk about that as well.
That song is a message to the fans. It’s a self-prophesying song, if you will. It talks about what we do. It gives the kids kind of the reminder that just because I’m a new guy doesn’t mean that I’m not here for the same reasons that you love Mitch. It gives people an insight into how I look at shows and how I look at my career doing this and why I write this music and why I’m really here, you know? It’s for them.
I’m guessing you were a fan. How cool is it to basically be able to play some of these songs night in, night out?
You know what, I wouldn’t call myself a fan as much as I would call myself a friendly competitor. You know what I mean? I grew up writing the same music and writing in the same realm as these guys. They were a really crushing band live and that’s the one thing they were really on point with and I always learned from them. You can say that I am a fan, to some aspect of it. For the most part it was one of those ‘I’m a fan in that competitive, I need to be that good, I need to go out there.’ To be playing the songs that I spent two months listening to every day, watching Mitch perform and being able to do them my style and my way, it’s a really cool thing and it feels nice. It’s an invigorating thing.
I think you played in Australia for your first show and I got a chance to see you not long after at the Revolver Golden Gods and you guys just crushed. I just love watching you.
That was a really difficult crowd too, man. I feel like we still did a good job. That’s why playing out here where people are stoked for metal and they’re stoked to come out and just shred each other, it’s ever better! The people who don’t know who we are? I’m going to show them who we are and the people who know who we are are going to help me represent and that’s what it’s about.
Let’s talk about Mayhem. What are your thoughts on playing for this festival crowd and the bands that are on the bill this summer?
I love it all dude, I’m so excited. Body Count, Cannibal Corpse, Darkest Hour, us, Upon A Burning Body, Emmure, Veil of Maya, we got Trivium, we got Korn — it’s so exciting to be on this tour with all these huge, awesome, fun bands. Friends with everybody, it’s summer camp man! I’m on a paid summer camp right now. It’s the best thing on Earth and I couldn’t be happier.
You mentioned being at summer camp, but I don’t know – are you guys even thinking about barbecues after the show?
Oh yeah! We barbecued yesterday. There’s parties, there’s what they call the “band mixers” so that bands get to choose a date they want to throw a party at and they throw it and it’s awesome. The Suicide Silence mixer in 2011 was only… I’d like to say that ours was better at the time because, it’s me and it’s our idea. We came up with a total California gangster party and it was cool because everybody dressed up. Everybody likes to get into these parties and it’s kind of like a summer camp. You get involved, you do everything, you have a good time and if you don’t, you shouldn’t be here. [Laughs]
You’re getting a chance to pull from the Suicide Silence catalogue plus whatever you want to throw in off the new album. What are your favorite songs to play live at this point?
Favorite song to play live off the old stuff is ‘Unanswered.’ I really love the way that song comes in. That and ‘Bludgeoned to Death,’ which is also a really fun song to play. The old-school songs that I would hear Mitch do and to be able to play them and do my little twist on them is always a fun time. Out of the new stuff, I really like the way ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ is coming out to be. I haven’t played all of it live yet but ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ is shaping up to be a really crushing song.
I can’t help but notice that on the record there’s a George ‘Corpsegrinder’ Fisher cameo and Cannibal Corpse are on the Mayhem tour this summer. Any chance of a collaboration?
Unfortunately not, we didn’t have much time to practice that song. We were in Europe and we didn’t get a chance to practice and George didn’t get a chance to practice with us so, it’s one of those things where we don’t want to take up his time. They play right after us on the same stage and we don’t want to take his time to have him warm up earlier. We just want to have fun this summer. If we were to do a headliner with them, I would love to at least coax the idea, but for the most part we’re not trying to impede on anybody.
For most artists, they grew up going to see shows even before deciding to make their own music and playing in a band. What is your first festival or concert memory?
Obviously, I went to local little punk rock shows, but, for the most part the first big professional festival/show that I went to was the Family Values Tour. I remember going to see Staind and they were the opening band and I was like, really fired up on that band. I thought they were heavy and melodic and I really like the combination of both. I remember going to see that and Method Man/Redman, Les Claypool and Primus came on stage. I remember seeing Limp Bizkit and I remember seeing a couple of other bands but I remember those being the highlights and I remember thinking that I just wanted to be on stage. At that point I had already started a band and, you know, as a young kid I just wanted to jam music just like all those dudes.
So at this point are you ever in awe of finally meeting some of those bands that you first saw?
Of course man, I always go up to people and I know it’s kind of blasé to do it but I don’t really care. I go up to most of the guys who I’ve met and I’d be like, ‘Man, you were such a big influence on me, you have no idea,’ and usually, I would brush it off too so I don’t expect them to be like (in a sarcastic tone) ‘Oh, yeah that’s super cool.’ I just kind of, ‘Yeah guy, thanks, awesome.’ You hear that time and time again and you see a lot of people who don’t really mean it and you kind of get jaded in that sense. So, I don’t expect anybody to flip out when I say that I’m stoked on them. But it’s a respect thing for me and I want to show people that I’ve come up learning about, mimicking and wanting to be in their place as a singer. I always go up and pay homage.
You’re kind of in that weird middle ground now where you might actually be at the point where you get some of those musicians coming up and doing that to you.
Yeah, right? It’s already been that with my previous band All Shall Perish — a lot of these fans. It’s funny, I say that but there are fans of All Shall Perish and they were also fans of Suicide Silence and friends of Suicide Silence and then they’d come up to me and were like, ‘Dude, we couldn’t be happier, they couldn’t have picked a better frontman. I was already a big fan, I would go see you.’
I remember the first time I heard that from one of the guys who’s in a huge popular band and he’s like, ‘Oh man, feels nice.’ Especially the Asking dudes, they all love what we’re doing and they’re really supportive and it’s been so heartwarming because I thought I was going to have to deal with egos and stuff like that but they’re not, they’re the coolest dudes ever and they couldn’t be more respectful.
Obviously, ‘You Can’t Stop Me’ is going well right now. Any thoughts that maybe what you would like to see come next down the road?
I would love to just write another record already. I’m ready to continue writing content with these guys.