Crossfade Guitarist: ‘Prove You Wrong’ Pushes the Boundaries [Interview]

2011-09-21

Story by Anne Erickson

Guitarist Les Hall Says Band is about ‘Playing With My Brothers’

Crossfade’s new single, “Prove You Wrong,” is a galvanizing, affirming, “told-you-so” rock anthem that breaks new ground for the Columbia, S.C. hard rock guys. “It pushes the boundaries for Crossfade, as far as adding in electronic stuff,” guitarist Les Hall said from a tour stop in Rochester, N.Y. “It’s a combination of the old and new Crossfade sound. Lyrically, it’s about people not believing in you and you proving them wrong.”

Hall, lead singer Ed Sloan, bass player Mitch James and drummer Mark Castillo have spent the past month on the Rock Allegiance Tour, playing with rock heavyweights Buckcherry, Papa Roach, Puddle of Mudd, P.O.D., RED and Drive A. The tour wraps up Sunday (Sept. 25) in Sacramento, Calif., and after that, Crossfade hit the West Coast for a run. (Find the band on Facebook and Twitter for the latest tour dates.) Hall spoke with Audio Ink Radio about the group’s new album We All Bleed, their experience on Rock Allegiance and why “getting up on stage and playing with my brothers” is the best part of being in Crossfade.

Crossfade are about to finish the Rock Allegiance Tour with Papa Roach, Buckcherry and P.O.D. and a major cast of rock players. Have you enjoyed yourselves?

Yeah, it’s been a lot of fun. We play pretty early, so I had a chance the see all the bands, and they’re all amazing live. I usually sit in the corner and play guitar most of the day, so I didn’t hang out with too many of them, but as far as watching, I think RED is an amazing band with a very cool-looking show, with its red backdrop. Papa Roach are incredible. Live, they sound just like record, and they have a great light show and great personality.

How rewarding was it to finally release the album, We All Bleed, this year?

Well, we spent two-and-a-half years making it and mixing it, and it was ready to go for a year. When it finally came out, everybody was really ready to have people give it a listen. It was a long time to wait, but we all felt good about the release when it came out.

Does it feel great to sign to Eleven Seven Music, which is such a solid rock label?

Absolutely. I think one of the coolest things is they absolutely believe in the record and love the music and stand behind it from an artist’s standpoint, as well as that standard label stuff. It’s a perfect fit for us. We’re grateful to be on Eleven Seven.

Tell me a little about the new single, “Prove You Wrong,” both musically and lyrically.

Musically, it was a completely different song for us. Eddie [Sloan, singer] had the verse and chorus down, and it wasn’t my favorite piece, so when he went out of town, I stole the vocals and put them in a different program and programmed all the electronics around them. I think it’s definitely one of the standout tracks on the record.

Have you gotten a good reaction from the fans on the song, since it seems so relatable?

Yeah, I think it’s one of their favorites. When we put out the record, we asked fans what songs they would like us to do live. We got an amazing response online from people telling their stories about how they proved people wrong and how the song relates to them. I love how it sounds live, because of the big electronics coming through the massive PA.

As lead guitarist for Crossfade, what advice do you have for aspiring guitar players?

Practice hard. Use a metronome. Use your ear. Most people learn everything from tab, and there are so many albums today where you can basically download the tab for any song or watch an instructional video on YouTube to learn it. I don’t think most people train so they can listen to a song and play instantly. You get that from sitting around and listing to stuff and figuring it out on your own.

What’s the most rewarding thing about being in Crossfade?

For me, in general, it’s getting onstage and playing every single night. You can translate that to any band, but with this band, we’re all like brothers. We love each other and get along great, and that’s a prerequisite for any band that’s going to last. It’s all about the music to me and getting up on stage, playing with my brothers and having a good time.

 

Watch Crossfade’s Lyric Video for ‘Prove You Wrong’:




1 Comment

  1. Craig
    26 Sep 2011, 2:06 pm

    Best album of the last few years… awesome stuff.

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