American rockers Hearts & Hand Grenades chat about their new EP Adrenaline.
PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF FOR US WHO ARE NOT FAMILIAR WITH YOU AND YOUR MUSIC AND TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF. We are the hard rock band Hearts & Hand Grenades from Buffalo NY. Stephanie Wlosinski – Vocals/Bass, Mike Bress – Rhythm Guitar/Keys, Kenny Blesy – Lead Guitar, and Tom Lafferty – Drums. We very much enjoy creating music for fans of the rock and metal genre. Influences of rock dating back to the early 80’s up through today can be found in our music and we hope to continue this voyage for a long time to come. TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR NEW ALBUM OR SINGLE? Our latest EP is titled ‘Adrenaline’, and it set to release on May 1st. It is a four-song completion bringing you fast paced, high energy music to send a shock of excitement down your spine. Our first single off the EP is called ‘Turning to Ashes’ and represents the feeling of frustration and uncertainty about waiting on someone else to move forward in life. We think it’s a really relatable track that a lot of people can connect with. WHAT INSPIRED THE ALBUM? The EP was inspired by a lot of different emotions that we have found ourselves dealing with in everyday life. ‘Adrenaline’ is a result of that drive that we have to continue to create and to keep going even when it seems like we are spinning our wheels, but it’s the need to keep working and keep playing out that has us coming back for more and it has an intoxicating effect. ‘Daggers’ was inspired by essentially a toxic relationship and the need to pull oneself back from the brink of it just completely falling apart. ‘For the Weakened’ is our anthem track, and it’s a straight-up song for the underdogs of the world. ‘Turning To Ashes’ is the first single and is a story of the frustration that is felt when you know your life is taking you somewhere but there is just someone or something that keeps you stuck in the same place. It's about the need to recognize that problem, and to take the next steps to get out of it that slump. CAN YOU SUM UP THE ALBUM IN A FEW WORDS? Hard, fast, unapologetic ROCK WHAT RECORD CHANGED YOUR LIFE AND WHY? For me, it’s Jagged Little Pill by Alanis Morrissette. Every song contains a level of emotion and honesty and it definitely shaped the way that I perceive music. After that, lyrics were everything. Songs no longer were just something that sounded cool, but instead a true opportunity for an artist to tell a story or tell a truth that otherwise might be difficult to discuss in conversation. That album got me to start to actually ‘listen’ to music, and that ideology has shaped the content of the way I put my lyrics into our songs. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE MUSIC VIDEO FILMED BY YOUR BAND OR ANOTHER ARTIST? We currently have only put together one video for our band for ‘Nothing Left’ off our second EP. We are looking forward to creating something in the near future for possibly two more of our tracks. But for me, I think one of my favorite music videos is for Knights of Cydonia by MUSE. It’s a great representation of old school crashing with new in an old western meets sci-fi kind of way. It's just really smart and fun.
WHAT WOULD WE FIND YOU DOING WHEN YOU'RE NOT MAKING MUSIC? I’m a huge fan of horror movies, so if I’m not making music, I’m usually watching a good slasher film or two. If anyone got to see my Netflix viewing history, it would be overloaded with horror films. Sorry, not sorry! DO YOU GET NERVOUS PERFORMING LIVE, IF SO HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH THAT? I wouldn’t say that I get nervous so much as I get that anxious excitement. We’ve all played out for years locally in other bands so we are all pretty comfortable performing live, but the excitement of getting up there and playing for a large crowd is just a really fun feeling, and it makes you want to do your best every time. There have absolutely been shows where one of us leans to the other and laughs as they say “don’t f*** up!” HOW DID YOU FORM THE BAND? The band really started with Mike and I wanting to take the step from the cover band scene (which is oddly huge in Buffalo) and making the move into the original music side. We just hit that wall with playing someone else’s material and needed to break away from that to start creating our own work. There is just something so fulfilling in creating and recording a song that came from us, and it definitely drives us to keep going. After Mike and I put together some of the songs, we knew we had to fill out the remaining positions and eventually landed on Kenny Blesy and Tom Lafferty to get us to where we are today, which is releasing our third EP. HOW DO YOU WRITE? - DO YOU HAVE A KEY SONGWRITER, OR DO YOU ALL WORK TOGEHTER? Mike and I have put our songs together by starting with a guitar line then I get to work on the lyrics. Building the song that way has allowed us to work together to bring out separate ideas to the table. We agree on a lot of what we work out but there are always times where we can pull in different directions musically. In the end though, we have been very much a team in our song creation. Once we have the main pieces, we bring it to the other guys to put their flavors on the tracks as well until we fine tune everything to the bands liking. WHAT INSPIRES YOU? I find inspiration in a lot of different places. With my lyrics I tend to draw on emotions or events, or life experiences, but that is not always the case. Sometimes a weird idea pops into my head and I run with it though. That’s how ‘The in Crowd’ off our second EP, ‘Nothing Left’, came about. WHAT IS NEXT? Next for us would be to put together a tour. We are looking to visit fans on the road and are hoping to get something in the works for later this year. We will keep our fans updated on our website and social media pages with updates as soon as they become available. Until then, we look forward to the ‘Adrenaline’ EP release on May 1st, and will continue to release new music in the near future. PLEASE TELL US ANY SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS SO WE CAN SHARE. www.heartsandhandgrenades.com www.facebook.com/heartsandhandgrenades Instagram.com/hahgrenades Twitter.com/heartshand