Silverstein have literally just landed in Australia and are about to kick off their tour playing alongside Pierce The Veil, Beartooth and Storm The Sky. We caught up with Silverstein front man and one of our favourite Canadians Shane Told to talk about the tour, River Oaks and his podcast Lead Singer Syndrome.

SCENEzine
I Am Alive In Everything I Touch was one of our favourite albums of last year. A lot went into that album from the background noises of cities, to displaying the bands ability to transition from heavy songs to softer acoustic style. A year on do you look back and rate it highly proving your hard work payed off?

Shane Told
Yeah absolutely. We still feel really confident in not just the concept and ideas and little things but the songs as well. And that’s what it always comes down to, if you take the time and write the best songs you can, the album will hold up down the road.

SCENEzine
One of our favourite tracks from the album is “Toronto”. It holds a special place for us because it transports us back to memories from when we spent some time there last year. Can you elaborate on your feelings displayed in the last line of the song “this city is a stranger to me”?

Shane Told
Yeah, it’s definitely the most important song on the record to me, and the most personal. The idea of that line is really echoed throughout the entire song and that is that even though I live in Toronto and have lived there my whole life, because I’ve been constantly coming and going for the last 13 years on tour, I don’t feel like I know the city that well. I feel like I leave and come back and so many things have changed. People have changed as well. And that feeling starts to take over after awhile to where you feel like you don’t really belong anywhere. Even in the place you lived your whole life. Which is why I say this place is “called” home. It doesn’t always feel like home.

SCENEzine
Your about to be back in Australia touring with Pierce The Veil and Beartooth. Is it more fun getting to tour around the world with friends bands to share the experience?

Shane Told
Absolutely. We’ve known Pierce since 2006 and done a bunch of tours with them, and Beartooth have become our absolutely best friends over the past year and a half. I mean we’re so close we formed a supergroup called Silvertooth. So yeah, we’re all buddies and this tour is going to be even more fun because of that.

SCENEzine
We recently interviewed Mike Fuentes from Pierce The Veil. He was telling us years ago they would tour with Silverstein and were given a tour book with crazy rules. Like only limited shower time per day. Do you have any funny tour book stories?

Shane Told
Haha really? I don’t remember that at all, I wonder if he’s mixing it up with someone else. We do sometimes fuck with the opening bands on some tours, but all in good fun and joking. It’s possible one of our old tour managers did that without telling us, but I have no idea. Haha I’m totally going to ask Mike about that now.

SCENEzine
We also interviewed Paul Marc Rousseau your Silverstein guitarist recently and he told us during the filming of “The Continual Condition” video the director thought he had a flair for acting. Are you worried he will leave the band and movie to Hollywood?

Shane Told
Paul Marc is one of those people that’s just good at everything. In fact, the only thing I can beat him at with any regularity is foosball (table football maybe you guys call it). We go to the driving range and he’s hitting bombs, we play hockey and he slaps the puck perfectly in the top corner, and when it comes to music he’s just incredible, pretty much at anything. So yes, I guess I am worried! But until Spielberg calls, I won’t lose too much sleep over it.

SCENEzine

Late last year you launched your own interview style podcast called Lead Singer Syndrome. Was this a new idea or something you’ve thought about doing for a long time?

Shane Told

I had the idea for a long time, mostly I just thought it was a great (and hilarious) name, but also thought I could do a much better job interviewing singers because as a singer myself I could relate to them more.  Originally I was going to do it as a YouTube channel, but once I thought about actually doing it, a podcast made more sense.   It can be done over the phone and there’s way less production to worry about.  Also, the long length of a podcast makes it a lot more compelling to get into those details you don’t always hear.  What’s been cool is how many amazing stories and ideas have been shared with me, as singers actually relate to me a lot more than in a classic interview scenario.  I’ve really enjoyed it!  Anyone reading this check out leadsingersyndrome.com and subscribe to that shit!

 

SCENEzine
Have you started compiling a bucket list of singers you’d love to interview?

Shane Told
Yeah, and I actually just got one of them. Top 3 biggest influences for me, so that was really rad. It’s cool because you know I’m a huge fan of music too so I get to nerd out on some of my favourite bands. The kid inside of me is really really stoked.

SCENEzine
Besides fronting Silvertein and doing the podcast you also now have your solo project River Oaks. How long ago did you come up with the idea and start writing for River Oaks?

Shane Told
That’s been kicking around for a really long time too. I just missed playing guitar in a band. I write a lot of stuff for Silverstein and play guitar in the studio, but still I wanted to do something that was 100% all me. I played all the instruments and really it was just something I could do that was just for me and was the most pure music for myself. So I wrote 3 songs, and recorded them just to see how it would go. I was really happy with them and Rise was stoked to put them out for my debut 7″. So now I’m trying to write some more and put out a full length. Everyone check that out too! Riveroaksmusic.com

SCENEzine
Where was the video shot for “Let you down”? And how different was it doing a video for your solo project vs Silverstein?

Shane Told
Well, again I was in complete control. When Silverstein makes a video, all 5 of us make a decision together and we work with the director and we all sort of agree on things. For this it was just me. Sometimes it’s hard because you don’t have anyone to bounce ideas off. I’m the only person in the band, so good or bad, it’s on me. We shot most of it in Toronto and then the rural areas up north, but the “city” shots of me playing are actually filmed in San Francisco, not Toronto. Which is kind of random.

SCENEzine
We are huge fans of the EP will there be full album someday?

Shane Told
Yup I’m just writing some songs right now. I’m not sure of the time frame but Silverstein will always take priority so it will happen eventually just not sure when.

SCENEzine
Earlier this year we got hang out with A Wilhelm Scream. Their bass player Brian told us about his skate punk band with you Jerk Circus from many years ago. Do you have a favourite memory from Jerk Circus?

Shane Told
He’s literally my best and oldest friend. We’ve known each other since we were 6 years old. We grew up on the same street and played baseball, sports, video games together… Then we heard Metallica. I got a guitar, he got one a few months later, and it changed everything. All we did was play music together. We started Jerk Circus when we were 12, that’s when we discovered punk rock and that we had an awesome punk scene in our own hometown. My favorite moments are some of the local shows we played. We started off as little kids playing these school functions and then ended up actually being pretty popular in our home town. We stopped playing when we were around 20, other bands took over and life got busier, but without Jerk Circus both Bri and I wouldn’t be where we are.

SCENEzine
Lastly can you leave us a message for your Australian fans who are excited for the tour and give us an insight into the Silverstein setlist?

Shane Told
We LOVE Australia, I know everyone says that but that’s because it’s awesome. And these shows are going to rule! As for set list It’s gonna be a mix. Expect old, new and in between!

(interview by Christian Ross)

 

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