Californian melodic hardcore band Being As An Ocean will soon back on Australian shores for a run of headline dates. We caught up with vocalist Joel Quartuccio to get an insight into some of our favourite Being As An Ocean tracks and he shares his excitement in returning down under.

SCENEzine
Firstly how’s 2016 been for you guys so far?

Joel Quartuccio
Its’ been incredible we’ve been on some insane tours and seen a lot of friends. We got to see Underoath that was awesome. Now we are home after a long tour enjoying time here so it’s been great.

SCENEzine
You released your stunning new song “Dissolve” earlier this year which we are loving. Was the writing process for that easy?

Joel Quartuccio
Thank you, the writing process for that one was actually one of our longer ones. Moving forward with our music writing we are kind of taking our pace now. We are on a new label Equal Vision records and so with them we really wanted to slow it down from what it’s been over the past couple of years and really love each song. “Dissolve” took a chunk of time.

SCENEzine
We are currently in May and May is mental heath awareness month are you able to share your involvement?

Joel Quartuccio
Sure well all the guys in Being As An Ocean are really good friends with Johnny who runs suicide prevention non profit. They do things like counselling, informing and education.
They really just to get the word out that life is life and it’s ok to not be ok sometimes. You need to open up when feel when you feel like things are just getting too much if not to a loved one then to someone else. So we’ve really partnered up with them this month to spread that good message of being open and for people who may not consider themselves depressive or experience a mental illness to be open to conversation. To not shrink back when someone they love opens up to them.

SCENEzine
When you were younger did you use music to help yourself through hard times?

Joel Quartuccio
Absolutely I think it’s the only reason I gravitated to it and attached to heavy music. When I was 11 years old my parents separated and that was really hard on me. I had a really tight-nit family well what we thought was tight-nit. So that was quite a big part of my growing up. Finding the people that I did who are still my best friends today through going to shows at a church run venue because that’s the only place my parents would allow me to go. Seeing heavy metal bands, hardcore, punk and indie and meeting Tyler and Ralph and we’ve been playing music together since we were 13 years old. So music was a huge part that saved me when I was that age it seemed pretty insurmountable at the time having that kind of turmoil.

SCENEzine
Is it surreal now to have so many youth across the world look up to you and hang on every word you say to help them?

Joel Quartuccio
It’s a huge honour and it is the most surreal thing I think I’ll ever experience. It’s kind of cliché but when I think back to when I was 11 or 12 standing at one of those shows if I could speak to myself and say one day you are going to do this in Australia or Germany. I wouldn’t of believed it. So that will always be just the most surreal thing of all.

SCENEzine
One of the really cool aspects of Being As An Ocean is the spoken word style lyrics. How do you tackle that process?

Joel Quartuccio
When it comes inspiration is a huge help (laughs). But a lot of the times it just comes from me having to really think about what I’m feeling to try and get out the thoughts in my head.
This time with these new songs it has taken weeks just milling over a line because we want to place an emphasis on really honest and real lyrics. Which I think is the beauty of a lot of spoken word. It usually stems pretty freely from artists own personality in life.

SCENEzine
A huge crowd favourite is “The Hardest Part”. Can you take us back to emotionally where you were at when you wrote that?

Joel Quartuccio
Sure I’ll give you the setting. I wrote that song drunk off a bottle of wine in Ralph our Bass players back yard. Just having had an amicable enough conversation over text with an ex girlfriend. It was just me being very nostalgic and having to deal with moving on (laughs). So that’s what came out.

SCENEzine
The exciting news for Australians is soon you’ll be back. Are you excited that these are your own headline dates?

Joel Quartuccio
Yeah we are stoked. Everything we have done in Australia has just been a blast. I think it’ll be interesting to see what a Being As An Ocean headliner feels like in Australia. On our past 2 visits with In Hearts Wake and Architects it kind of just felt like we were being led hand in hand with those bands through Australia and just basking in that energy. But I think it’ll be really interesting to see what a Being As An Ocean show in Australia feels like now after having played those shows. I’m really excited to see who comes out because we just got off a headliner here in USA maybe it was just who else was with us but being a headliner is always a special feeling.

SCENEzine
We caught you guys at The Roundhouse Sydney last visit when you were with the Architects. You definitely won over that crowd. Were Architects fun to tour with?

Joel Quartuccio
Oh man what a show. Watching Architects from the balcony was incredible. They are great we’ve had the privilege twice now of touring with them we just love those guys. They are very, very kind. Very welcoming and warm to us. I know sometimes when your band tours as much as they do in the rat race a lot of bands can have their off days. Where they might be upset or mean or short but I’ve always seen everyone from Architects be amazing and gracious to one another and everyone around them. It’s an honour and a privilege anytime we can tour with them.

SCENEzine
Do you have a favourite Australian tour memory?

Joel Quartuccio
I really loved the first time we saw Bondi beach from the cliffs. That was one of my favourite memories. That was on our second tour over there with In Hearts Wake and Dream On Dreamer. We stopped at Bondi checked out the cliffs and dangled our feet and did the whole spiel. I was just blown away by the natural beauty of it all. That’s one of the reasons why we always come to Australia or want to because despite the shows being incredible it’s like a vacation (laughs). Sure we have to travel sometimes and don’t always get to see everything but just being in Australia everything is so beautiful and we always just love coming back.

SCENEzine
Your live shows are really energetic. Do you ever get hurt at times?

Joel Quartuccio
Oh yeah (laughs). It is always because I’m just the biggest clumsy person in the world. It’s kind of a bull in a china shop sometimes. My best friends can attest to it. Every time I come home I’ll spill something or break something and they’ll just say oh Joel’s back. The last time I was hurt in a major way was in the middle of the Silverstein tour we have just done in the States and Canada. It’s the lamest thing in the word because I flip off balconies and climb stuff but I was standing on top of the barricade and stepped down and rolled my ankle pretty much straining it fearing a pop not being able to support weight on it at all. So I was on a cane for probably a week and wrapping my ankle every single day. It healed up pretty quick I ditched the cane as soon as I could and just kept going.

SCENEzine
Since you’ve got a Harley Quinn tattoo does that mean your excited for the Suicide Squad movie?

Joel Quartuccio
Oh my gosh I think my friends and I talk about it almost every single day. I’m a pretty big nerd when it comes to comics and all that good stuff. Huge Star Wars buff also.

SCENEzine
How are you feeling about Jared Leto playing Joker?

Joel Quartuccio
I’m interested. I’m kind of trying to hold back reservations because I don’t like his tattoos. I’m not ready in my head yet completely for a kind of gangster Joker. But everything is starting to look really cool. As they release the trailers I’m getting more and more sold. It’ll be an interesting take. I know it wont be my favourite because there is no more Heath Ledger but I think Jared Leto is a great actor I think he will handle it the way it should be handled.

SCENEzine
One of our favourite songs of yours is “L’exquisite Douleur” can you tell us a bit about the songs meaning?

Joel Quartuccio
L’exquisite Douleur is a French term meaning the exquisite pain. It’s a phrase used to describe the love and ache you feel for someone who you care about more than anything but can’t have. So again the topic of it is a past relationship of mine. Where I had really been holding onto this person for a long time. Really romanticising it doing all these different things when I was with them or not. Again kind of just a clean breaking from myself emotionally from that person. So that’s where that song spun out of.

SCENEzine
I guest it must be hard to maintain relationships when your constantly on the road?

Joel Quartuccio
Yeah man it’s rough (laughs). I’m not going to sugar coat it. It’s hard and if everyone who chooses to do something with their life that involves extensive tour and travel I’d rather break it to you now (laughs). It’s hard but anything worth doing is hard. I’ve kind of viewed it as a blessing in disguise. Trying to see the silver lining behind all of that is the people that really care to stick around will stay. The people that have woven themselves into the fabric of your life that want to remain a part will stay tight-nit and not fall away. So I am thankful in a sense that this whole life does have a bit of a whittling effect at my normal social life and love life. But I know that the people who I’m meant to be around will continue to be around me.

SCENEzine
Can you leave us a last message for your Australian fans?

Joel Quartuccio
I’m really looking forward to seeing all you guys and enjoying some more incredible shows and making memories.

(interview by Christian Ross)

being as an ocean tour

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