Suicide Silence has recently become active again after taking an extended break after the tragic death of vocalist Mitch Lucker on Halloween night 2012. The band initially formed in 2002, and have now released a total of four very well-received albums, and are considered one of the deathcore genre’s finest. After deciding to carry on, the band selected Hernan “Eddie” Hermida of All Shall Perish, under the condition that he didn’t have to quit that band. Their new album, “You Can’t Stop Me,” has been receiving generally positive reception, and the band is currently on tour with the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival. Hermida and guitarist Mark Heylmun were interviewed at the Indianapolis Mayhem stop on July 19, 2014.
What’s the reception been to the new album so far?
Mark: Everything is good, basically.
Eddie: Yeah, to quote “The Lego Movie,” everything is awesome.
M: I haven’t seen one single negative thing. Literally, yesterday was the first hint of negativity I got because I was taking over Revolver magazine’s Instagram and people were just like, “Stop posting about Suicide Silence!” But when everyone was posting about the record, everybody was like, “Oh, I got this, it’s f—ing sick!” Because I was posting as Revolver magazine, people didn’t know it was me, people were like, “Suicide Silence sucks! Stop posting about them… but the album’s good.”
That’s really kind of a Midwestern attitude.
E: [laughs] Hey man, you suck but I like the things you do!
M: You suck, but man, that first record? I bought that s—t when I was 10!…
E: [looking at interview questions] Alright, why don’t you hand me the notes and I’ll ask Mark the questions.
E: The title track… lyrics by Lucker… what are they about and how were they found?
M: There was the iPad. I just remember, Mitch got an iPad and he had everything on it. These couple of songs were from the last week of October 2012. We knew there were some lyrics on this iPad, but we weren’t really in a rush to find them and not until… I could be wrong but I think it was September when we were all in the jam room together and we were like… We want[ed] those lyrics from Mitch’s iPad. You know, we were about to write a record and everyone wanted to know what Mitch was writing about. And they came up as “You can’t stop me. You can’t f—ing stop me.” They were all over the place. It was about living an honest life and being true and not living your life full of lies… and it was just good for us to read that. We were ready to move forward as a band and we needed to feel unstoppable…
The title, is it a statement about how you’re continuing on without Lucker?
E: It’s kind of a statement. It’s an all-encompassing statement. You know, it’s meant to show fans that you can’t stop us as Suicide Silence, you can’t stop me from being the singer of this band, you can’t stop Mitch, even in death, because he even titled this record, you know what I mean? And it’s meant to make the fans feel like they can’t be stopped. It’s like, ‘Hey man, life is tough and s—t gets you down, but if you give up that’s when you’ve been stopped. That’s when it’s done, you know what I mean? The best thing you can do is keep moving forward.
It’s kind of eerie how Lucker wrote those lyrics, and I’m sure there were a lot of people who thought you should have broken up.
E: Change the name. That’s the only thing we hear. “I don’t care what you’re doing. Just change the name. Why can’t you change the name?”… [The reason is] Because it’s the name that these guys have busted their a– for, that even in passing I busted my a– for it. Going on tour with these guys we’re supporting, we’re bringing all of our fans so that everyone can be together. We’ve all worked intrinsically on the name Suicide Silence, and why would four members of a hard-working band give up on it?
It’s the sound, too. Suicide Silence has a distinct sound to it.
M: It’s really us as a band, it’s us coming together. But that sound, it’s really all of our influences put together. We write all this music together. That’s what makes Suicide Silence and that’s what made us change and keep moving on. We wrote the music, and then Mitch, what he was doing with the lyrics was a reaction to the music we were writing. Us four, if we’re going to write music together we’re not going to change the name. That’s just the bottom line, because I don’t give a f—… But really, there was no discussion, really, it was like, Nuclear Blast, the management, everybody was like, “You guys can do whatever the f— you want. We’re not going to tell you anything because you can do whatever you want.” We’ve all been hanging out for ten years, and then to come back and change the name? Whatever. So it’s like.. There was a lot of legal s—t that had to go down. Yeah, so them telling us we could do what we wanted really made us feel like we could do whatever we wanted. And so we eventually said, “Why don’t we change the name?” and Garza our guitar player, our other guitar player, he named the band, he said if we changed the name he’d quit. He was short, sweet, and very honest. He said, “F— it, I quit. And that’s that” To me, it was enough to be like, here’s some passionate people… and it still took a couple of months for us to figure out what was going on.
What does the name Suicide Silence mean?
I’m pretty sure it’s Garza’s [idea]… As a 9th grader in high school, he wanted to start the heaviest band ever, and he said he was in class and he goes “What is the name of the heaviest band ever, what would it be called?” And as he was doing schoolwork he started drawing the original Suicide Silence logo. It’s not the one we use now… But he just drew it, the original logo, and he put the band together.
[To Eddie] You should really ask the next one.
E: How did you go about picking a new vocalist?
M: We got together once a month after Mitch passed. Everything that Suicide Silence ever did, we’d go to the Buffalo Wild Wings in Verona. And it’s just where we meet. Everybody knows us there, everyone likes us. So when we’d have a band meeting, that’s just where we’d do business. But we had met up there once a month after Mitch passed… We all don’t live around each other, so we met once a month, and I think it was somewhere around April, and we all wanted to jam. We all wanted to get together and play music. But it was very hard to actually formally get together without knowing what we would do. We’ve always been a working band. So it was hard for us to just be getting together and just playing. It was a sad thing to think about. So we were just like, “How do we get this back going? How do we go about writing music?” And somebody just said, “Well why dont’ we ask Eddie from All Shall Perish, why don’t we just write a record and see if Eddie wants to [be on it]?” And that was just said in passing, that was the first time any name came up….
E: They came to my table and it was… kind of like overwhelming, the idea, the fact that they chose me… I figured the logical thing was going to be to pick somebody who held the Mitch image, and get somebody who kind of copy catted Mitch’s style, you know? And …
M: That’s what everybody thought.
E: That’s what everybody was expecting. And when I talked to them about it I was like, “Hey, are you sure?” I can do it, that’s not a problem. I’m down with you dudes, I love you dudes, whatever you guys need, whatever you guys want. Don’t ask me to quit my band, and we’re on the same page. And straight up, they were like, “Look, we want somebody who’s going to kind of cut the mold in half, somebody whos’ going to vibe with the band and make good music. And that’s what we did, we went in there and wrote the best record that we possibly could… An amazing record.