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Senses Fail

It has been well documented to the point of overkill that times are tough in the music industry. Gone are the days where the big artists sell tens of millions of units in relatively short time periods, and gone are the times when mid-range acts can carve out a decent living selling records and touring on the back of them. These times have been replaced by a long period of struggle and uncertainty in this tenuous industry, a period with no real end in sight.

Despite this, New Jersey-based metalcore/post hardcore outfit Senses Fail have been together for over a decade now. During that time have released five albums and an early EP, as well as toured relentlessly. Rather taciturn lead vocalist Buddy Neilsen, speaking as few words as possible from Los Angeles, is quite proud of his band’s achievements for the past ten-plus years, especially given these trying circumstances under which they have been operating during that time, and believes that they also have plenty more juice left in the tank (in fact this was the only subject I could get more than a few words out of the guy).


“I’d say it’s been successful,” he states, “it’s been a good run, it’s hard for bands to stay around this long on top of that, and hopefully we can stay around another ten years.

 

“Oh yeah,” he says with conviction, when asked if he feels he’s seen the industry get tougher over the last ten years, “people just don’t buy music anymore, so it affects everything. It sort of shortens the life of a band, so that’s why I feel pretty cool about making it as long as we have.”

 

So much so that the band are heading all the way back out to Australia for their third time here soon. The tour takes in all of the mainland capitals this time, including Adelaide (which often gets bypassed), and pulls into Melbourne on August 11 when they play The Corner Hotel. Local supports for the night are soon to be announced. Buddy, in his rather understated manner, is very happy to be returning to tour Australia again. “I’m excited, I always love playing there,” he says.

 

The band will apparently cover some major ground on this tour as far as their recorded history is concerned, and they promise a very interactive show between band and audience.

 

“We’ll play a little bit of everything,” he says. “New stuff, old stuff, in between stuff. We usually have a good time together on stage, we don’t have barriers or barricades, so people can come up onstage and cut up.”

 

The last time the band were here was in 2010, and Buddy has a few memories of that tour. “Yeah, couple of things,” he says. “We stayed in Sydney for a week or so, it was fun.”

 

Senses Fail’s latest album, Renacer, came out in late March, and the band have been touring heavily on it since. It was the first album of the band’s to be written and recorded without founding member and guitar player Garrett Jablocki, and this is reflected in the title. 'Renacer' is a Spanish word meaning ‘to be reborn’. It has also been seen as a new creative direction for the band, and Buddy has been very happy with the manner in which the album has been received so far, from fans, critics and in a live sense.

 

“It’s been good. We weren’t sure what to expect, but it’s done well and I think people enjoyed it,” he says.

 

As for the rest of the year, the band just have one more engagement after the Australian jaunt. “We just have another US tour, and that’s probably going to be it for the year.”

 

BY ROD WHITFIELD

SENSES FAIL play The Corner Hotel on Sunday August 11. Renacer is out now through 3Wise Records.