Philadelphia, PA’s Jesus Piece is a vicious quintet that has been turning heads clean off over the last few years. A crushing monstrosity of beatdown and death metal, Jesus Piece recently signed with Southern Lord, in addition to a heavy touring circuit and a split with fellow heavies, Malice at the Palace. With a busy year behind and before them, including their first full-length on the horizon, CVLT Nation had the opportunity to discuss that and more.
This has been a busy year for Jesus Piece, between the split, fests and signing with Southern Lord. How do you guys feel about this momentum?
JP: We’re really grateful for all of it. We started this band just to have fun and play some shows so to be able to do what we’ve been doing is awesome.
You all just got back from a quick run with Code Orange, Eternal Sleep and Trail of Lies and just played Back to School to Jam. How have all these shows been going?
JP: The shows have been sick. The Code Orange weekend were some of the coolest shows we’ve played and it was our first time going to Canada so we’re glad it was doing it with them, Eternal Sleep and Trail of Lies.
Earlier this year you released a split with Malice at the Palace on Bridge Nine, in addition to touring with the former in the Spring. How did the split take shape?
JP: The singer of Malice, Bob, asked one of us if we wanted to do a split together and we were down because we love that band. Everything was super natural and there wasn’t really much to it. Just wrote and recorded some songs and Bridge Nine were nice enough to put it out for us.
Southern Lord, a cornerstone label of heavy music, signed you this year and is an interesting pairing. What prompted this choice?
JP: Well, we got the attention from Southern Lord as we were recording the split and after the initial introduction we just started talking and it fit. We love what they’ve put out and thought it would be sick to be a part of it, especially because of the unique position of being a newer hardcore band joining a roster of insane metal bands. Really excited for sure.
What other artists have influenced you in the past and in the writing of your debut album?
JP: Massive question, only because each person in this band has different tastes, but I think that’s what makes it cool. Anything from brutal and old school death metal to straight up punk and hc influences this band. We started this band to be straight up death metal but it evolved into what the EP was.
How does it sound in comparison to your previous releases?
JP: For lack of a better term, “mature.” We came together pretty quickly so after a few years we’re finally becoming totally comfortable with what we want to do. I know we’re really not trying to pull any direct influences so it’s made the writing process harder but it’s worth it. We just want to make unique metallic hardcore that we want to hear.
Your band has never shied away from political subject matter, especially given America’s current, unsightly political landscape. What fuels the unparalleled wrath and vitriol behind your music of late?
JP: We’ve let it be known since the beginning how we feel about the state of America, and how poor things are. We’ll never stop talking about it. As of late, we’ve written about the echo chamber of meaningless opinions and the denial of the issues in the world around us but moving forward we’re really exploring more introspective themes. That’ll be for you to hear on the next record.
What would you like to see change about American politics?
JP: If you have an idea about our politics, you already know what we’d want changed. Obviously most levels of our government are corrupt, ignorant, useless or lethargic to the real issues. From local or federal levels there needs to be a change. That’s not something one band can change but hopefully more people can be called to action.
For kids seeking out political outlets to make a difference, are there any venues and publications you’d recommend?
JP: To be honest, utilize the internet and social media. It’s not just there to post selfies and make jokes. The best source of information is from other people on the ground experiencing things first hand. Just be smart and research EVERYthing. “Fake news” is real and it’s much more of a threat coming from bullshit artists for some clicks.
Your set at this year’s This Is Hardcore received strong circulation, in part due to who hate5six dubbed Kodi the Supergirl. It was a really cool part of the set. How did that guest appearance come about?
JP: The spot with Kodi was talked about once or twice earlier in the year. Her father is a friend of ours and we were talking about how cool it would be because she enjoys JP’s music. We actually had no clue she could do vocals like that! We weren’t expecting that kind of voice to come out of such a young girl but she destroyed it and the reaction from the crowd only intensified the moment even more.
JP: It’s actually from a video game but we don’t have any idea which one. The dude who put it together does a lot of our designs and I guess this one everyone really liked. Shout out to Jordan / @piss_war.
In addition to the release of your album, what plans does Jesus Piece have for the future beyond that?
JP: We got a lot going on in the background, you’ll all just have to wait and see.
Is there anything you’d like to add for our readers?
JP: Pennsylvania forever. Stay active, start bands, stay aware. Support your friends and never stop doing what you want to do.