Justin Brannan (Indecision / Most Precious Blood)

Interview with Justin Brannan of Indecision / Most Precious Blood conducted by phone between Brooklyn, NY and Boulder, CO by Greg Svitil on February 22, 1997.

Greg: I got Unorthodox, and am pretty much loving it.

Justin: Cool, awesome.

Greg: So if we can talk about that, in the bio it says that you’ve released several seven-inches on various labels. After doing a number of EPs, what were some of the challenges, and what were some of the pleasing aspects of doing the first full-length?

Justin: Pretty much what it is. It’s not really a compilation of all the seven-inches — it’s all new recordings of everything with a bunch of new songs. But it’s a lot of the songs that were also on the seven-inches we put out that were limited edition press runs. They didn’t really get to that many people. So we kind of felt that, instead of — ’cause we had material to write a whole other record, all new stuff, but we decided instead to just re-record all the other songs, and put this out this way, because more people will probably get this than the seven-inches. Do you know what I’m saying? So, there are a lot of new songs on it, but if you have any of the seven-inches, there’s a couple songs that are the same, just because — there’s a song on that, “Worlds Apart,” the last song. We’ve been doing that song for three years, and it may be old to us. But it’s not old to a lot of people who never heard us before. So that’s why we decided to put it on there, along with the other songs that are also old.

Greg: Do you ever look back on your first few records, and feel that you could record a better version?

Justin: Oh, yeah (laughs). Our first seven-inch, which is on this label RPP in Belgium, we put that out when we were together for about a year. So it wouldn’t be a good representation of us now, because it doesn’t really sound much like we do now. And that’s really why we recorded a lot of the songs, because we weren’t happy with the old versions of them. It gets old with time. Looking back at that seven-inch now, it’s horrible. But at the time, it was good, ’cause that’s as good as we were. But as we progressed with writing new songs, I guess it got better.

Greg: Yeah, a lot happens to a band over four years.

Justin: Oh yeah, definitely.

Greg: Some of the lyrics on Unorthodox, it seems like you have some pretty strong feelings about some of the topics in the songs. Do you consider yourselves, individually or as a band, as people with strong convictions?

Justin: Yeah. We’re all individuals in the sense that we do agree on a lot of things and a lot of opinions, but we all do have our own opinions, especially on a topic that is very recurring in the lyrics: religion. I would consider myself an atheist, but the other people in the band, I don’t think would go as far as to say that. But they might feel the same way though about religion. It’s just that the way we were all brought up, in Catholic schools and stuff like that, just being force-fed stuff since day one. It’s just made us feel the way that we do. Collectively as a band, we all feel the same emotion with the lyrics. Because, otherwise — I write most of the lyrics, but I do present it to everyone in the band, so we all agree on it. ‘Cause we all have to feel it in order to do it. You know what I’m saying? It sounds cheesy, but we all have to kind of feel it for it to be a collective emotion, to do it. Tom, who sings the lyrics, doesn’t really consider himself an atheist. Although he was brought up a Catholic and stuff, he wouldn’t go as far as to say that he was an atheist, although he does feel the same convictions in the lyrics.

Greg: Do you ever run into things like that, where he’ll just be like “I just can’t sing these lyrics”?

Justin: Not really. Someone actually asked him that once, and what Tom usually says is that he can take the lyrics in a different way, which is what we want. If I write a song that sounds like it’s an atheist kind of song, to come people, they might take it a different way. So that’s kind of what we want. You know how a lot of bands, like say Chokehold for instance, they give explanations for their songs? I always admired that in bands, but the thing is, what we try to do is have everyone take the songs for what they want to take them as. So if you want to take the song as thinking it’s an atheist type of song or brings up topics like that, then you can. But that may not be what it’s about. Do you know what I mean? Like, “give me an explanation for a song,” and telling you “this is what it’s about”; we just say “figure it out for yourself, and just take what you want out of it,” not being told what it’s about.

Greg: And ti’s not always the first thing that might pop into your head. To me, a song like “No,” isn’t even necessarily about conventional religion. Some people are very religious about a thing like straightedge, or a job.

Justin: Very true. It’s not just religion in the sense of *organized* religion, like Catholicism or Krishna or whatever. It’s like when people make things into a habit. Like you said, like going to work or being straightedge. They have this religious imagery to it. People do it over and over. It’s a habit, or a tradition. But, I don’t know.

Greg: Speaking of religion, Indecision seems to have an interesting take on religious issues in general. A song like “No,” in one way, could be interpreted as very blatantly in favor of non-religion. But then, something like “Believe” seems to portray an optimistic attitude towards faith.

Justin: Yeah. They’re kind of, not *contradictory* in a way, but you can take it as that. “Believe” is a very positive song, it’s one of our more positive songs, but it wasn’t really written about religion, but it just came out that way. Just trying to state the importance of believing in yourself, but it came out as the idea of “I believe.” It could be that you believe in something, or it might be contradictory to one of the other songs, where you don’t believe in anything, or it takes an atheistic stance, like they contradict themselves. You know what I mean?

Greg: Yeah, but I like how you do that, ’cause real life isn’t black and white.

Justin: Yeah, not at all.

Greg: Have you experienced much personal struggle between the side of you that wants to believe and the side of you that wants to be skeptical?

Justin: In the way I was brought up, everything was force-fed to me. So one side was old enough to take a step back and look at what I had been taught all those years in school and in high school, and when I got the chance to take a step back. I was smart enough to take a step back and look at it. And all my instincts wanted to do was totally deny everything I had been taught. And I am skeptical about it, because no one knows. The most religious person, no matter what they tell you, whether it’s a Catholic or whatever, and they’re trying to prove to you that a god exists, they really can’t do it, because there’s no way to prove it. It’s just an image. I can say that the *image* of God exists. But there’s no person that is God. You know what I’m saying?

Greg: Yeah, I think that, even at my most religious moments, I could never have said, honestly with myself, that I am 100% assured that God exists.

Justin: You can’t, because there’s no way to know. I think a lot of the people who are religious, they like that. They like the skepticism of not knowing, of ‘fearing the gods,’ so to speak. They still believe in them, but they don’t know that they exist, and they make sacrifices for them, and they pray to them and all this, but it’s really a non-existent entity that lives inside their heads, inside their brains, or inside their faith. They make this so-called “God” out to be whatever they want it to be. You know what I mean?

Greg: Yeah, it could be interpreted as being somewhat dishonest with yourself, but it could also be something really positive, like, “this is just how this person has this metaphor for morality, of being a nice person, or just treating people nice in general.”

Justin: Right, definitely. I guess everyone takes it differently. People take it however they want to take it, and I guess that’s how it’s meant to be. But the way that I had been brought up, and many of us — did you go to a Catholic school or anything?

Greg: I went to an Episcopal school in junior high school.

Justin: I guess it’s how you’re introduced to it. If I was introduced to it in a different way, I might not have totally despised it as much as I did. But the way I was introduced to it, everything was being forced on me. I was being told to do this and to do that, and that I had to do this in order to please this person who I didn’t even know existed. I didn’t know what the hell was going on, this is what I was being *told*. And maybe if I was introduced to it and presented to it in a different way, I might not be so skeptical about it. I might not be talking like this now if I had been introduced to it differently. ‘Cause a lot of people feel the same way — it’s just a lot of things that happened in school in their childhood, which turned them away from it when they got old enough to take a step back, and look at it, and think about what they’ve been taught. They wanted to deny it and defy it.

Greg: Being in an environment like that almost invites reaction. It seems like a lot of punk and hardcore comes out of Catholic school.

Justin: Totally. What it is, is that, from that foundation, creates a monster of denial. If you didn’t have that foundation of all that force-fed imagery, be it religious or from authority or from your parents — without that, there wouldn’t be this rebellious music. What would you be rebelling against if everything was fine?

Greg: A funny example to think about is, perhaps, if something like Earth Crisis hadn’t been brought up in a meat-based, constantly meat-oriented society, they would be all peace and flowers.

Justin: It’s where it comes from. If their parents were all vegetarians, they wouldn’t be doing what they’re doing now. And, in the same sense, I wouldn’t be saying this or doing what we’re doing. A lot of people wouldn’t be thinking the way they are, but because that’s what it was like — I couldn’t see it being any different though. I guess it’s just the people that I know, but I don’t know anyone who was introduced to it quite the same way I was and force-fed it, who embraces it.

Like Tom, the singer, he doesn’t really despise it as much, but he’s very skeptical about it, and he was presented to it in the same way. It’s just some people take it differently. Some people are kind of brainwashed by it, and they don’t really take the time to question it, either because they don’t care, or because they just feel it’s the right way because of tradition. But the thing was, what I had been taught, it was like “okay, that’s all well and great,” but with finding out what I believed myself and what I thought about things, I realized that the two didn’t coincide, and they couldn’t go along together. How I felt about things and went about things wasn’t exactly how it was told to go about things, so I had to deny the Catholic upbringing. If it had, I wouldn’t be totally questioning it like I do.

Greg: As much as I look back at my junior high school and think that it was all bad, and it’s had a horrible effect on me, at the same time, if that hadn’t been so in my face constantly, maybe I would have never thought about it, and I would have never found what I believe. I wouldn’t have confronted myself like that.

Justin: Exactly.

Greg: It’s interesting. Some of the lyrics in general seem strangely ambiguous, “strangely” in the sense that they’re pretty straight-forward, but could still be interpreted in a number of different ways. Do you ever hear being misinterpreted in terms of message?

Justin: Do you mean, the fear, if someone takes a song the wrong way?

Greg: Yeah. Or maybe that they won’t even think about it at all, and won’t interpret anything in the first place.

Justin: That’s the thing. I don’t know if you could just read the lyrics and not think about them.

(brief interruption as mild chaos brews at Exit Records HQ. Justin is torn away from the phone, and after word is received that Steven is still trying to find a parking spot, we return to our conversation).

Justin: Hello? I’m sorry. It’s nice weather out now, people are all over the place — it’s disgusting. People never come down around here, and when it gets nice out, people decide to come on down. It’s horrible. Anyway, I’m sorry. I don’t know. Do you mean, if someone could read the lyrics and not even bother to think about it?

Greg: Yeah.

Justin: They definitely could. I wish people wouldn’t, but I’m sure people do, and it wouldn’t have any effect on me if you just read the lyrics and they don’t really mean anything to you, or if you can’t identify to them. You know what I mean? I guess, in some way, even if you can’t *totally* identify with it, you might be able to find *something* that you could identify with. But the fear of misinterpretation of message — we don’t like really telling people what the songs are about, and what to think they’re about. So we don’t give explanations for them. But I guess, if you misinterpret the message, you’re only misinterpreting the message because of what’s inside you and how you think. If you think that some song is racist or something stupid like that, you’re only thinking like that because of what’s inside your head. There’s nothing in the song that’s going to make you think that. You know what I’m saying?

Greg: The “Guilty of Being White” syndrome.

Justin: Yeah, exactly. If you think it’s a racist song — we used to say that, if a song offends you, then it’s about you. If a song offends you in that way that it makes you mad — you *question* it — but if it *offends* you, then it must be about you, because none of our songs are meant to offend anyone. But if it does, then it must be about you.

Greg: Just total defense mechanism.

Justin: Yeah, I don’t know, “defense mechanism” —- it’s just, I don’t know, I don’t even know what to say.

Greg: Yeah. I catch myself doing that too sometimes. I’ll look for reasons why a certain lyric in a certain song is a wrong thing to say. Then, after about an hour of trying to figure out why, I’ll realize that the only thing that I’m worried about is that it could very well apply to me.

Justin: Right. And that’s why you don’t understand it, and that’s why you’re wondering if it’s offensive to you. It’s a weird thing.

Greg: One of the most interesting lines that stuck out for me was ‘you’re always pointing fingers, when they should be pointing inward.’ (‘Lies’)

Justin: It’s people who are always blaming other people about things. People you run into every day, just from dealing with people. It’s like they’re so quick to blame someone else, they’ll never ever say it’s their fault. And it just creates — it’s just stupid, to put it bluntly, that people will do everything they can before they blame themselves, even if it’s blatantly their fault, you know what I mean? Blame anything they can, whether it be a person or a reason why something happened, just everything that they can before they actually swallow their pride and say ‘it was my fault.’ You know what I mean?

Greg: Yeah. At the same time, swallowing your pride is putting a lot of faith in people to not jump all over that and take advantage of it. So it’s kind of a tricky, two-sided street.

Justin: Right.Yeah, definitely. I don’t know, in a way, also, it’s minimalistic, but the fact that I do something wrong — I’ll blame myself. And it may be easier said than done, but if people could do that in a larger scale it would solve a lot of problems. Not just in hardcore, but everything in general. People who do that, who are always pointing fingers, and never want to take the blame for something that’s obviously their fault, they’re the cause for a lot of problems.

(Indecision’s bassist Steven Bago joins the conversation at this point)

Greg: A lot of the hardcore scene seems to have this attitude as if it should serve as a role model for the outside world, as if it’s got everything figured out. But at the same time, if you look at all the pettiness and the backstabbing within in, it seems like we should figure out a lot of our personal issues first, at the same time as going outward.

Justin: Our friend Scott, who’s in this band Tripface (an awesome band – ed.), once said at a show we played in Ohio, where we were really victims of the stereotype because we were from Brooklyn — we were this ‘heavy moshcore band.’ A lot of people were talking about us and giving us looks and stuff, and what he said, it was really true, a thing that I think we all feel but it’s hard to put into words, was that you try to escape the normal everyday lifestyle by getting into hardcore, but then you get into hardcore and it’s just like the outside world, where it’s full of stereotypes and full of racism and full of people judging other people. You try to escape the society, so to speak, and then you go right back into this microculture that has the same problems as the outside society.

Greg: There will be people who will seriously think that if a band is from Brooklyn, they have some sort of tough-guy complex.

Justin: It goes back to what I was saying — if the song offends you, then it’s about you. The people who believe that and think that about us — I wouldn’t want them to bother with us, you know what I’m saying? I don’t want the people who would believe those stereotypes to come to see us, or buy the CD, or read the lyrics. Because people like that don’t belong — I’m not saying that I should be the one to judge, but really that’s not what it’s about. What do you think, Bago?

Greg (completely, albeit accidentally, interrupting Steven; sorry about that!): And rightfully so. People spend so much time trying to hurt each other’s feelings, and they’re sort of walking all over each other to get to their secure place in hardcore, and it’s unfortunate. And I get the feeling that a lot of people are going to miss out on Indecision because of that.

Justin: I totally realize that. If you’re from some weird place, like Kentucky, or someplace like that, where its’ like ‘oh, these guys are great,’ like there couldn’t be a great band from Kentucky. But because we’re from Brooklyn, it’s like oh, we must be a bunch of tough guys, even though, one: they don’t know us, or two: they’ve never heard us, they don’t know what we’re really about. That’s what you have to deal with. And the people that are not gonna bother with us because of that, then let them do that. The people who think like that wouldn’t really get into us anyway then, you know?

Greg: Exactly. And it’s kind of cool how a place like Louisville did that, and just totally for the respect of every other hardcore scene in the country, and the world, through just being damn good bands and writing good music.

Justin: Right.

Greg: As a change of pace,what do you do aside from being in a band?

Justin: Bago, what do you do?

Steven: I go to college. I’m studying to be a psychologist, and that’s about it.

Justin: We’re all pretty much students. Just go to school, and some of us work on and off, and that’s pretty much it.

Greg: I like the little homage to touring at the end of the CD, all that stuff. What’s an average day like for you on tour? You obviously have some really interesting things happen.

Justin: Average day? The van would break down.

Steven: Argue about who gets a bed.

Justin: Drive eight hours the wrong way, and then, once we get there, the show would be canceled. Or, we get there, and the show would be okay. I don’t know, a lot of the show on tour have been like, not a lot of people there, but we meet a lot of really nice people. So that kind of makes it worth it. You never expect it to be these great shows on tour, but it’s really just for the experience. So stuff like that that happens to us, it kind of makes it fun. Even if something goes wrong, it’s something to talk about when you get back.

Greg: It makes it all worthwhile, to drive 1500 miles to play for ten people.

Steven: Most of the places we’ve been, we’ve made pretty good friends though.

Justin: Definitely. That’s really what it comes down to being all about. Because when you go to the shows and there aren’t very many people there, you always make the most of it. But then, the people that are there are the ones who are into it. The ten people that show up to this kid’s house in Georgia are the ones who want to be there. Everyone else who isn’t there — it’s like, whatever.

Greg: Yeah. If it’s not in this huge venue that gives the chance to be a big scenester, a lot of people aren’t interested. Some of the best show you’ll ever see are in some kid’s basement, where you have to walk through a blizzard ten miles to get to the place.

Justin: We went out in the winter for two weeks or so with Tripface, and more or less we played a lot of shows like that. People’s houses, and basements, and squat-type places, and it was a lot of fun. The people who go to those shows — they’re not more ‘real,’ but they’re more sincere. If you go to some kid’s house to see two bands from out of state, in Atlanta, you must really love their music, or if you’ve never heard of us, the music, ’cause it’s in some kid’s house and there’s twelve people there.

Steven: It’s not a big fashion show there.

Justin: It’s not like some big show where it’s like a party and you go and hang out with everybody. It’s like, you go to some kid’s living room and you see a band. The kids who are there are the ones who want to be sure, and whoever isn’t there, then who cares about them.

Steven: Getting drunk.

Greg: Are you pro- or anti-alcohol, or -drug?

Justin: I don’t think we’re ‘pro-‘ or ‘anti-,’ because two of us are straightedge and two of us aren’t. So it’s kind of like a weird thing. Bago isn’t straightedge, but I wouldn’t say he’d be ‘pro-drugs’ though, really.

Steven: I’m not ‘pro-drinking,’ it’s just I don’t choose to…

Justin: It’s just a choice.

Steven: If I see people going out and getting drunk and getting into fights, I still think that’s stupid.

Justin: It’s pretty hard to be ‘pro-drugs,’ with all the problems that it causes with, not our friends, but people in general. Even if you’re not straightedge. I couldn’t envision.

Steven: It’s common sense.

Justin: Yeah.

Greg: Now I’m gonna ask you about your five favorite bands or albums of all time.

Justin: Okay. Bago, you go first.

Steven: No, I can’t.

Justin: Umm — could come up with some crazy choices. You want me to do mine?

Steven: You go.

Justin: Five favorite albums. Let’s see.

Greg: Feel free to expand it to ten, or whatever.

Justin: Wow — 30. Black Flag ‘Damaged.’ Minutemen ‘Double Nickles on the Dime.’ Bob Dylan ‘Highway 61 Revisited.’ The Cure ‘Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me.’ There’s millions more. Let’s see — David Bowie, I guess his first album, but there’s so many more. That’s really hard, Greg.

Greg: You can do more, because you have a list that’s obviously a bit more interesting than the average hardcore band.

Steven: ‘Superfly’ soundtrack. ‘Master of Puppets,’ Metallica. You can just put down a lot of ’80s stuff, because I get what I can off of people, and listen to all this old bad ’80s music. I’m so burnt out on hardcore.

Justin: What were your five? I didn’t hear.

Steven: I don’t know, I only came up with two.

Justin: I actually did an interview today on the computer, and the big question — I can’t say I’m complaining about it, because I’m just so excited that people actually want to know what the hell we think — usually, people are like ‘oh, what influences you?’ and what they always mean by that is ‘what bands do you like?” but because I like David Bowie — it doesn’t influence me in the music we play, you know what I mean? People are like, ‘oh yeah, what influences you?’ Well, not music, really. Black Flag doesn’t really influence me to write the music that I do. So it’s kind of a stupid question, because it really should be ‘what bands do you like?’ not ‘what influences you?’ Because the bands I named, I doubt they’d really influence me to write.

Greg: I like the ‘favorite bands’ question better than the ‘influences’ question.

Justin: It’s like, what do you mean, what ‘influences’ me? There’s millions of things that influence me.

Greg: It’s just so hard to say. I mean, some of my favorite records in the world, I can’t even begin to say seriously that I take influence in the music that I’ll do from Bitches Brew by Miles Davis, and it’s still one of my favorite all-time records.

Justin: One time I said something like ‘the way it smells before and after it rains,’ and the kid thought I was being a dick. He didn’t understand. I don’t know what influences me. They wanted to know what bands I like.

Greg: The one exception to that, I think, I read an interview with Into Another, where the guy asked about influences, and that’s a really interesting thing, because you can’t even tell what Into Another —

Justin: And what did they say?

Greg: It was just with Richie, and he was talking about David Bowie and The Smiths, and Stevie Wonder. He didn’t really mention any punk bands.

Justin: If all I listened to was hardcore, I’d probably have killed myself by now. You can’t. I’d listen to it a lot, but I listen to Siouxsie and the Banshees and stuff like that now more than I listen to hardcore, not because I’m starting to ‘not like it,’ because I still love it as much as I did. But I like so many other things, so many other styles of music. Really, we all do. You’d find us listening to a Smiths tape before you’d find us listening to the Cro-Mags. As much as we love the Cro-Mags and stuff — you know what I mean?

Greg: And a lot of people don’t realize that there are huge parallels between, like, Converge and the Smiths. And it definitely doesn’t seem like it on the surface.

Justin: It’s deeper than that.

Greg: Morrissey is just great. Do you have any personal favorite books or authors?

Steven: George Orwell is one of my favorites. ‘1984.’ I was re-reading that, so it’s in my mind.

Justin: I like T.S. Elliot, Henry Miller. I read a lot of true crime books, too, so that’s really like a novel. I like reading poetry. It’s kind of boring to read, but if it’s good, it’s good.

Greg: “The Waste Land” was punk rock, in a strange way.

Justin: There’s so much parallel to stuff like that, that people would never think about. Stuff that was rebellious then, even in that it’s parallel to the punk rock now, that’s parallel because then it was rebellious. Poetry or music then, say, Elvis Presley, for instance, back then he was like friggin’ the Sex Pistols. Rebellious guy. And what the hell was he doing? He was playing the acoustic guitar. And that’s parallel, too. But people never think it, because Elvis Presley doesn’t sound like Snapcase. But there’s a direct parallel. You know what I’m saying?

Greg: Yeah, I mean, people don’t realize that in the 1700s or whatever, Bach was just pure intensity, and he was just playing these intense piano pieces at Mach 11. It’s like speed-metal.

Justin: Well there’s definitely a parallel. People think it’s the music, but it’s a lot more than that. It’s in the content of the songs, or what they were considered for the time.

Greg: If you look at the way the media would see someone like Jerry Lee Lewis, they thought he was a dangerous antichrist.

Justin: But it was just him and a piano, and that’s what he was doing, then. It’s just the way that society changes, where it may accept different things. There’s people doing stuff now that then — I don’t know what it would be considered — but I guess he was a rebellious figure then to parallel to someone now, I don’t know who, but you know what I mean? People are just afraid of anything new.

Steven: Yeah, they back off. The young people accept it easier. In a few years, this will probably be mainstream.

Greg: Maybe.

Justin: Hope not. If this ever got mainstream to the point where it was on MTV and everything, probably all of us would just quit. I’d hold on to my records, but I’d definitely quit playing in a band.

Greg: People talk about how horrible it is that punk and hardcore have become mainstream, but if you think about it, no, what I consider to be a ‘true’ punk or hardcore record has never been on the Billboard Hot 50.

Justin: Thank God. There’s stuff like Korn, where these people think that Korn is a hardcore band.

(We digress to a discussion about Brooklyn’s hardcore scene. When Indecision first started, there wasn’t much. Justin comments that ‘there was really nothing to inspire us,’ to which Steven adds ‘we had nobody to watch and say ‘oh, I wanna be like that.” It seems that, despite the obvious negative effects that having such a large number of bands has had on scenes in general (competition), the silver lining of the cloud could perhaps be that having that motivation to improve has produced some very groundbreaking music. Then again, it seems that now there’s a thousand bands who all rehash current trends as much as possible.)

Justin: There’s so many bands that are trying to do what Snapcase are doing, not cause-wise, or message-wise, but just bands starting out sound-wise. They sound like Snapcase.

Greg: It’s kind of like, ‘as the first steps to try to find ourselves, we’re gonna put in a few metally riffs, make some interesting high-pitched guitar noises, and have some guy who sings like he’s on Victory.’

Justin: It’s the thing, it’s such the form now. It’s like, ‘if we sound like this, and it we sound okay, and we’re kind of metal, and sound like the Victory catalog, and we’ll do good, we’ll get some shows.’ And it’s sad, but it’s kind of like that. A lot of bands that haven’t been around that long just took from that, molded themselves to sound a certain way, say, the Victory bands for instance, and they get the shows that bands that have been around for five or six years are getting.

Greg: People so desperately want another Snapcase, because they love it so much, and they’ll immediately identify that sound, like ‘oh! I’m gonna swallow up the demo and the t-shirt and the seven-inch when it comes out eventually,’ but a lot of these bands, three years from now, they’re gonna be left out in the cold.

Justin: ‘Cause it’s gonna change, and then there’ll be the bands that sound like the bands that are big then.

Greg: But it’s kind of cool, because the bands that are around now, like Snapcase, I’m sure will still be around, because there’s so much sincerity and honesty in what they’re doing. But the bands that are trying to emulate Snapcase probably won’t be. Or, they’ll turn into something different, and be popular with a new generation of people. Indecision doesn’t really sound like anyone. It seems to be on a somewhat different wavelength than a lot of the stereotypical New York bands.

Justin: We really didn’t want to sound like anyone, but because we all have so many different influences, it’s kind of hard to sound like one band — dare I say ‘influences,’ but I don’t mean that from what we all write, the lyrics and the music…

Steven: We’ll all come together and make something that sounds like we’re whole.

Justin: We don’t want to sound like anyone. We really didn’t work at *not* sounding like anyone, it’s just what came out from what we write. I don’t want to sound like anyone, but it wasn’t like ‘we can’t do this or that, because it may sound like some other band.’ But whatever came out was what we used because it was what we wrote. If it sounds like something else, whatever, but it was what we wrote.

Greg: To me, influence implies more of trying to find something within yourself that will carry a similar kind of energy and equal something that came before in terms of energy, not so much in terms of sound.

Justin: ‘Influence,’ the word itself, is more than the bands you listen to and what you want to go and sound like. It’s a lot of stuff. It’s hard to put a finger on it, though.

Greg: There’s so much music out there and so many things are constantly bombarding your senses, so it’s hard to select a few things.

Justin: It’s hard to not let everything influence you, in whatever way.

Okay, we start talking about Rosemary’s Baby. I brought it up, since it’s one of my favorite all-time movies, and because Indecision samples from it. But, as most anyone will tell you, once the conversation resorts to horror films, it’s time to put the transcription on pause.

Greg: When I ask this next question, I don’t so much mean literal accomplishments like more records and extensive touring, but what do you hope to accomplish as a band?

Justin: I can just sum it up and say that we’d like to be remembered. We never really had any goals. We wanted to do the best that we could, but — I can say this for myself — I’m not a very competitive person. So I really don’t care what happens. I’m very glad when things do happen and things go well, but I don’t really have goals. I wanted to do well, and we’ll do it until we’re not having fun anymore, but really the only goal we have is just to be remembered when we’re gone. Someday it’ll be over, and then that’ll be it.

Steven: I’d have to say that what I have gotten out of it, and what I’d like to get out of it, is that I get to have experiences that there was no way I’d get to have any other way with anything else. Like when we go to Europe — I wouldn’t be able to go. I wouldn’t be able to afford that. But I get to go with the band, and play guitar. It’s unreal.

Justin: It’s unreal, and it’s like silly. If we’re gonna go to Europe, and play Serbia and Croatia and stuff, it’s ridiculous. I probably would have never gone to Europe if I wasn’t in a band. Back three or four years ago, when we started the band, I wasn’t like ‘yeah man, we’re gonna do this, and someday, we’re gonna go to Europe.’ We kind of did what we did, and whatever came along, came along. We let whatever happens, happen. I don’t know if we got lucky or whatever, but it’s where we are now, so to speak. Not that we’re not happy with it or excited with it, because it might sound like that.

Steven: But I see a lot of other kinds of bands, they say ‘oh, we’re gonna create a demo to send to record companies, and we’re gonna get signed, and we’re gonna go on tour.’ And we never thought about that. We just played shows. And it’s strange. It kind of snuck up on me.

Justin: When I heard us on the radio.

Steven: It hadn’t even hit me. I had CDs in my hands, and I was like ‘wait a minute, we’re on the radio.’

Justin: It’s weird. It’s like a dream fulfilled, but we didn’t have this goal to be where we are now. I’m not saying I don’t wanna be where we are now, *if* we’re anywhere. I don’t know. See what I’m saying, Greg? I can’t explain it. We didn’t set out to do anything. We wanted to get as far as we could, but if we broke up in the first year that we were together, then that’s what’d happen. But it didn’t. And we never really kissed anyone’s ass to get anywhere.

Greg: That’s probably the best way to go about doing things, especially in hardcore. That’s one of the things that makes things un-competitive, and more fun.

Steven: I have so many more friends because of playing shows.

Justin: The people you meet through the music is unbelievable.

Steven: And it’s kind of cool. I hate to say it, but you meet people who are like you. You meet people that don’t want to go out to dance clubs, and it’s just a bunch of people that you can actually relate to better.

Greg: Are there any thoughts that you would like to leave us with?

Justin: Question religion, and find out things for yourself before you go believing them.

Steven: Ditto.