Nails are one of the most aggressive, in-your-face, unapologetic bands currently touring today. They are a group that not only have great music, but a determined work ethic to go with it. Nails’ mastermind Todd Jones talks about the new album, working with Kurt Ballou of Converge, their relationship with the UK and their upcoming tour with Full of Hell.
Jack: Hi, thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. How are you?
Todd Jones (Vocals/Guitar): Thanks for your interest. I’m okay. Up and down, smiles and frowns.
Jack: You just released the first single “You Will Never Be One of Us” from the album of the same name, are you happy with the response to the song?
Todd: Yeah, it’s overwhelming. I didn’t expect the positive reaction that it’s gotten so far. Really stoked.
Jack: How long did the music video take to film?
Todd: About 8 hours to film. Not sure how long editing took. Probably twice as long as that.
Jack: The album is out on the 17th June, when a new release comes out do you get excited or nervous regarding the fan response?
Todd: Both. We like our album so we are excited for our fans to hear it but we also have no idea how our fans are going to receive it.
Jack: Nails bassist John Gianelli has described this as your most intense effort yet adding “it seems to get more intense each time.” How did you make the album more intense?
Todd: Not sure, but it is. Sometimes things turn out a little differently than you expected and you can’t really know how it all comes together until after its put together.
Jack: The album contains the longest song you’ve ever written, ‘They Come Crawling Back,’ which is eight minutes long. Why did you decide to make such a long song?
Todd: We didn’t decide to make a long song, that’s just how it turned out. We wanted to write a slow plodding song. We didn’t have a pre-determined amount of time we wanted the song to last.
Jack: For the album you made webisodes, why did you decide to make these?
Todd: Because we found someone who we thought would do a good job and also, we thought our fans would like the insight to our band and the process of us recording our album with Kurt Ballou.
Jack: The album is being released on Nuclear Blast, what has been working with Nuclear Blast like?
Todd: Very good. They give us the freedom and support we agreed to. They rock. HARD.
Jack: You worked with Kurt Ballou of Converge fame on the album, what was it like working with him?
Todd: It’s great. He has helped shaped our sound a lot. Kurt is really friendly and he’s a great conversationalist. Also a keen sense for fashion. Every day at the studio he wore a t-shirt I really liked. I complimented him each and every day. Very fashionable.
Jack: Kurt said in the first webisode that Nails “bring a no bullshit song writing sensibility to a genre that has a lot of self-indulgence.” Why do you think powerviolence has become self-indulgent?
Todd: I don’t think power violence is self-indulgent. I never said that.
Jack: Jane Doe turned 15 this year, does this album mean anything to you?
Todd: Yeah, it does. When that record came out I was working graveyard shifts by myself and I would listen to that thing all the time and fall asleep at my job to it.
Jack: You played with Converge last year at Temples Festival in Bristol. How did you find Temples Festival?
Todd: It was a lot of fun. I was around a lot of people who I knew and like. We had a great time. Great bands. All around great experience. I hope we get to play there again.
Jack: You’re returning to the UK in November to play Damnation Festival which has a varied line-up of acts. Do you prefer playing with different genres or your own style?
Todd: I don’t care either way about genres just as long as the bands we play with are good. Damnation has a lot of good bands.
Jack: You’re also touring the UK with Full of Hell, what do you like about Full of Hell?
Todd: Everything. I love their music. It’s smart but also has caveman qualities in it. It’s super aggressive but extremely tight. I love Full of Hell.
Jack: What do you like about touring the UK?
Todd: Our fans there are the most maniacal out of anywhere else in the world.
Jack: Finally, because Nails are going 10 years old next year, will you celebrate in any way in 2017?
Todd: I don’t think so. Maybe we’ll have a BBQ at my house.
Jack: Thank you very much for your time and I hope to see you in November.
Todd: Thank you for your interest in Nails. See you in November.