There is no shame in my when I say the DEATH BELLS are the BOMB! we feel really honored that Remy has given us a track by track break down of their new album “BETWEEN HERE & EVERYWHERE” that comes out today! DEATH BELLS also start a major tour on July 30th.
DEATH BELLS – BETWEEN HERE & EVERYWHERE – TRACK BY TRACK
Track-by-track by Remy
We recorded “Between Here & Everywhere” in two blocks, and Passerby was one of the first we decided to use for this record. Immediately after we had the sketch of the song done we knew that it was going to be one of the singles, and making it the opening track on the record made sense once the song fully came together with the thoughtful additional instrumentation courtesy of our friends Laena (Myers-Ionita) and Jeff (Fribourg). The verse guitar part has become one of my favourite parts to play live. Sometimes nothing beats just playing one string and alternating between two notes.
One of the most creatively rewarding parts about Death Bells is that Will and I are extremely open to different ideas and ways we write these songs. A lot of the time I’ll be banking sketches and little ideas without fully fleshing out the instrumentals, and this was the case with Hysteria. For my writing process, sometimes simplicity is best. Once Colin (Knight) who produced the record jumped behind the kit, Will on bass and Jeff experimented with some guitar leads, this song was nearly fully fleshed out in under an hour. I wrote the guitar parts on this song more like I would play bass and the bass harmonizes in fourths during the verse to create a subtle brooding atmosphere.
How Lifespring came together is the complete opposite of Hysteria. This track was sketched song out as a demo years ago before recording our second record ‘New Signs of Life’. It didn’t exactly fit the more the 80s, pop-leaning sound of that album, and for a long time we lost the session until Will found USB that was hiding in a jacket pocket. To refine the song new drums and guitar parts were recorded, and we removed a lot of the layers that were on the original demo.
There’s a lot of contrast throughout Intruder, and comparing it to the demo (that was recorded as a 3 piece) it’s almost a totally different song. Although I was extremely skeptical at the time, I love that Will added the slide guitar parts onto this one and that he and Colin insisted it stayed. Jeff also really made this song come together with his mad scientist-esque synth playing that he combines with a whole bunch of guitar pedals. This is another track thats a lot of fun to dig into when performing live, it’ll always be in the setlist moving forward.
- A Better Resolution
A tie for my favourite song on “Between Here & Everywhere”, A Better Resolution is influenced by naive Americana music like F.J. McMahon with our own spin on things. For the majority of Death Bells songs I’ve steered clear of writing parts that are centered on power chords (we usually have synthesizers filling out that space) but this one just felt right as a downer, dusted, ballad, so there’s a combination of open and power chords. This is another tune where the slide guitar plays a really crucial role in setting the atmosphere, and the leads sparsely dance around the chord progressions to give the rest of the song space to breathe.
- Last Days
Last Days is my other favourite track off the record, and a few close friends made some very kind comments saying this is the best song we’ve written after we showed them some rough mixes. The main guitar part in this song was originally played as full chords instead of being picked and had a different rhythm. Will worked extra on this one while I was spending some much needed time back home in Australia and I’m so thankful for his vision on it. I also love Colin’s drumming, so many little flashes of brilliance that don’t over power the rest of the instruments. Its a love song full of harmonies, melancholy, and one of my favourite lines:
“I’ll gift the world to you
The moon, the stars too”
- Space Without A Name
This was a rare song where I had a fully fleshed out demo – but it changed a lot (for the better) from the original thanks to Colin spending a lot of time working on it. It was one of the first tunes we started on after ‘New Signs of Life’ was released and the upbeat feel from Last Days continues into Space Without a Name. I’m grateful we got the effects how I envisioned on the opening guitar line as that was a part I was a little nervous about recreating from the demo (since the demo was originally a heavily effected digital piano).
- Eternity Street
Eternity Street was another one where we sketched it out live one night with Colin at his studio. The structure of the song didn’t change from that night, but the added instrumentation really makes the song what it is. This was the first time I’d experimented with a uni-vibe pedal and it added a nice touch to the verse ring outs. Overall the guitar and bass parts on this one are very subdued until the pre-chorus builds momentum and the song opens up.
- Here & Everywhere
Here & Everywhere, the album’s closer, is the most “ambitious” song we’ve done since Will and I have been making music together. Looking back its a nice trip down memory lane to see how far we’ve come in comparison to our first songwriting efforts. I wrote the original chord progression with a totally different vision (I was listening to a lot of INXS at the time) but we fleshed it out and the end result is a power ballad that twists and turns. There is one guitar part towards the end of the song that has the most overdrive I’ve ever had on any song ever, but there’s also really pretty acoustic guitar and violin parts to add to the contrast. This one truly couldn’t have come together without the help of those involved, and special shout out to Arian (Jalali) for the beautiful piano playing and Laura (Delogu) for her operatic vocals. We spent more time getting this song to the place we wanted it to be than most of the others on the record combined, but I think (hope) it was worth it.
July 30 Oakland, CA @ Starline Social Club
August 1 Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
August 2 Vancouver, BC @ Fox Cabaret
August 3 Seattle, WA @ Timbre Room
August 5 Boise, ID @ Neurolux
August 6 Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court
August 7 Denver, CO @ Hi-Dive
August 9 Chicago, IL @ Subterranean
August 10 Cleveland, OH @ Now That’s Class
August 11 Toronto, ON @ The Baby G
August 12 Montreal, QC @ Bar Le Ritz
August 13 Boston, MA @ O’Brien’s
August 16 Brooklyn, NY @ St. Vitus
August 17 Philadelphia, PA @ Philamoca
August 18 Washington, DC @ DC9
August 19 Richmond, VA @ Richmond Music Hall
August 20 Asheville, NC @ Static Age
August 21 Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
August 23 New Orleans, LA @ Santos
August 24 Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall
August 25 San Antonio, TX @ Paper Tiger
August 26 Austin, TX @ Mohawk
August 27 Dallas, TX @ Cheap Steaks
August 29 Phoenix, AZ @ The Beast
August 30 San Diego, CA @ The Casbah
August 31 Los Angeles, CA @ Zebulon