By Nicholas Jason Lopez
They may be new to the “scene,” but Ohio-based alt-rock outfit Rose Crest wasted no time with their introduction, as they put out their debut four-track EP ‘BAD DECISIONS’ last month, which features the energetic, standout singles “The Fall” and “Keeping Pace.”
Recommended for fans of The Used, Brand New, Circa Survive, Hawthorne Heights and Taking Back Sunday, ‘Bad Decisions’ revolves around the theme of self-reflection and acceptance of past mistakes.
Armed with the ability to mesh together screams, catchy choruses and aggressive guitars, Rose Crest are sure to make you sing along with their choruses before you even know what the words are.
The Music Bugle had the opportunity to chat with the band – composed of guitarist Ed Kemper, vocalist Brandon Sorrell, drummer Matt Atha, bassist/vocalist Chance Textor and guitarist Danny Council – about ‘Bad Decisions’ and more.
Music Bugle – How did you guys get to decide on the band name?
Ed Kemper – The name Rose Crest was the name of a road a friend of mine lived on growing up. Always thought it was a pretty cool name. It was just something I offered up as a last-minute suggestion and everyone liked it. Brings back memories of skateboarding up and down the street and sneaking beers. Joe Libardi, if you’re out there, I miss you bro and you should come to a show so we can party!
Music Bugle – What was your goal for your EP ‘Bad Decisions’?
Matt Atha – My goal personally was to just get it out there and see what happens. We had been working on those four songs for so long through all the hurdles that I just wanted someone to hear them and give whatever feedback they had good or bad. Then, it finally happened and it was such a relief. Now, the goal changes to do even better and keep the ball rolling. We’re excited for what’s next!
Music Bugle – What challenges you the most about being considered a “new” act?
Chance Textor – I think the most challenging thing about being the “new” band in our scene would be the competition all around us and I mean that in the best way. Every other band in our scene is phenomenal, both in the studio and on the stage and we all want to see each other succeed, but at the same time every show we play, even at its absolute best, we all know we have to keep getting better and better because they are too. We just put out ‘Bad Decisions’ and I think every song on it is a banger, but this next chapter, we’re really stepping it up.
Music Bugle – What excites you the most about your style of music?
Matt Atha – We started out trying to fit into a genre, but I feel like we’ve evolved past that. What excites me the most about our style of music is that at the moment, our style is just whatever we’re feeling. We’re trying to branch out and just do what sounds good and have fun with it. The next big release might have a little something for a lot of different people.
Music Bugle – What made you want to release “The Fall” as your debut single?
Danny Council – “The Fall” for us kind of embodies what the band is about. We felt musically, it gave people a taste of kind of everything that we love about alternative music and what we’re trying to do. All of us enjoy stuff from indie artists, to heavier stuff, to classic alternative and modern pop punk. “The Fall” has room to breathe in the song during the verses, the prechorus/chorus really picks up the energy and then, the outro is kind of a culmination of where the song was headed for us. We always thought it would end on kind of an impactful note and so far, it’s easily a fan favorite.
Music Bugle – Which of your songs were the hardest to write?
Brandon Sorrell – Lyrically, “Keeping Pace” was the most difficult song, by far. The song is incredibly unique and really caught me off-guard when the guys presented it to me. I rewrote melodies multiple times, often finding that the ideas I had were out of my vocal range or simply impossible for one person to do. I’m super happy with the final product though and while I joke about hating the song often, I’m really proud of it and can’t deny that it helped me grow as a songwriter.
Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise?
Danny Council – For me, I’d say my top five at the moment are Better Off, Spiritbox, Counterparts, Real Friends and Citizen. I really love melodic hardcore stuff like Counterparts and Spiritbox, but at the same time, I absolutely love modern alternative, like you see with Real Friends/Citizen/Better Off. I think a lot of people are quick to throw the “pop punk” label around, but a lot of these pop punk bands that last end up changing and evolving their sound and as another musician, it’s really refreshing that you don’t have to write the same thing over and over and can still sound like your band. I think Citizen is a really good example of that.
Music Bugle – Did the music video for “Keeping Pace” come out the way you hoped?
Ed Kemper – I think it came out amazing! Especially, since half of the shoot took place in a 100-degree warehouse full of cicadas. We were all dripping sweat and running away from bugs like little girls. I also just love the video, because it perfectly encapsulates where we are all at in life. We go to our shitty corporate jobs and feel like death every day and our only escape is drinking and playing music with our friends. If anybody ever needs a music video, do yourself a favor and hit up Sandwich Jones. The man can’t be beat!
Music Bugle – Does social media help or hurt musicians?
Brandon Sorrell – I’d be the first one to talk about how social media is ruining society, but when it comes to music, it’s a little different. Social media is an incredibly powerful tool that allows artists to connect with their fans that they never could before. Back in the day, popular musicians were like celebrities – untouchable and rare. Now, we can BS with our favorite artists on Twitter. Anybody can make music and share it online and discovering our favorite artists is easier than ever. Unfortunately, there’s such an abundance of content out there that it can be easy to get lost in the crowd. Artists have to stand out to grow their fanbase and success requires a lot more effort. Overall, I think social media has had a positive impact on music in the sense that it is now a much more intimate and rewarding experience for fans.
Music Bugle – What’s a quote that motivates you to keep doing what you do?
Chance Textor – So, I know this is kind of a cliché saying, but I think my most inspirational quote personally would be “Don’t talk about it, be about it.” I’m sure it was probably said by someone else originally, but my old tattoo artist and good friend Josh Cook said that to me years ago. I used to suffer from severe depression and still do from time to time and never had any motivation, but I always talked about wanting to be in a band or having big plans to make music, but at that point, I had never even picked up a guitar or bass or whatever. I was talking to him one day after going to one of his shows and was super excited and talking to him about wanting to play and he looked at me dead in the eyes and said, “Don’t talk about, be about it” and honestly, at first, I got kinda bummed out because I felt like he was just telling me to shut up, since I wasn’t actually doing anything, but in reality, it was a much-needed kick in the ass. I really feel like if he hadn’t said that, I wouldn’t be in music today.
*Photo Credit – Kyle WK McDowell*