Interview with Phil Leblanc of A Memory Down, discussing their new album Man Apart, the new songs, touring and all things AMD for 2013!
A Memory Down recently released their national debut album entitled Man Apart on Turkey Vulture Records/Bungalo Records/Universal Music Group. The result is a serious top-notch offering full of hard headbanging numbers with substance and style; a true reason to get your rock groove on! The songs on the album are by and large inspired by real life experience and challenges, done in a way that inspires listeners to rise up, live strong and proud while waving the American flag in one hand with a rock fist firmly thrust in the air in the other. Simply put this is well written music that is sure to stand the test of time like the great rock records of old!
Vocalist and band leader Phil Leblanc along with fellow band mates David Leon (lead guitar), Ryan Wagner (guitar/keys), Ben Kelln (bass) and Dalton Akerfelds (drums) have taken the Denver area rock scene by storm by working hard and consistently kicking out great music while building a huge regional fanbase. Now the quintet has their sights set on doing the same on the national scene and with a strong album to promote and extensive non-stop touring in the works for 2013, we are betting the band that has taken the Rocky Mountains by storm is about to do the same across the rest of America and beyond!
Interview with Phil Leblanc of A Memory Down:
Rick/RR: A Memory Down is in the house and here to represent. Phil, it is great to speak with you today!
Phil/AMD: Thanks Rick, it’s good to be here.
Rick/RR: We are catching you at a perfect time, as your national debut album entitled Man Apart just becoming available to fans. A proud time for the band I’m sure with distribution efforts coming via Turkey Vulture Records/Bungalo Records/Universal Music Group for the project.
Phil/AMD: Yeah, big things have been happening for the A Memory Down team. It’s been a lot of work for everyone involved.
Rick/RR: Up to this point, A Memory Down has been bangin’ around and making some big noise in the local/regional Denver, Colorado metro club scene. You’ve worked hard, built your fan base and honed your skills in true old school rock fashion!
Phil/AMD: Yeah, the Denver scene has been really great to us. The promoters and venues are all class acts here and our fans are amazing.
Rick/RR: Musically you could be described as a bluesy based, modern hard rock sounding band, but that is really only part of the story. What makes you standout is that the band combines great storylines and a memorable delivery to that driving rock sound.
Phil/AMD: Yeah Rick, we really wanted to bring back true story telling in our music and everything comes from real life experience. My band has been amazing capturing my emotion with their instrumentation. We are truly a team – a brotherhood if you will. We strive to make each and every member’s contribution to the songs equally important and equally meaningful.
Rick/RR: A perfect example of that description would be your leadoff single “Long Black Train.” This song is a great selection to make your radio debut and introduce the band to the national audience.
Phil/AMD: Thanks Rick, we are really proud of that single.
Listen to “Long Black Train”:
Rick/RR: Beyond the catchy and rock radio made sound, it is a powerful song in its lyrics and song structure. What stands out here is your ability to creatively talk about real-life experiences that a lot of people will relate to.
Phil/AMD: That is A Memory Down’s ultimate goal. We want our fans to physically feel and experience the power of lyric and sound and come away with a different aspect on life.
Rick/RR: Another song in particular that I am 100% confident a LOT of people will relate and gravitate towards is “Soldier.” This one is the type of song that puts chills down your back. If you haven’t considered dropping this on rock radio I would strongly encourage you to consider it as your next single.
Listen to “Soldier”:
Phil/AMD: The idea of this song was to express what a soldier must feel like proudly defending people from tyranny and helping them gain their own democracy. We think a lot of people really take for granted what our forefathers went through to give us our freedom. We hope through this song we can get more Americans to stand up proud and get behind our men and women who are trying to give other countries the same freedoms and democracy that we enjoy.
Rick/RR: This is also a song I hope resonates with fans as the message is one that reminds us of the true sacrifices being made by our fellow brothers and sisters as you stated which allows guys like you and I to enjoy something as simple as enjoying rock-n-roll music!
Phil/AMD: Amen to that brother.
Phil/AMD: Well, in performing this song live, lately it has become more of our chant/audience participation song and it feels really good coming off stage after every show to shake hands with a soldier who just came home on leave to tell us that he/she appreciates our reflection of their life’s purpose.
Rick/RR: Since your signing to Turkey Vulture Records, you started to get out touring more of the U.S. to support the new material. What’s going on tour-wise for 2013?
Phil/AMD: We are heading out mid-January through the end of February on our own throughout the Midwest and then joining up with a great band Screaming for Silence in March. We also plan to play several festivals throughout the summer of 2013.
Rick/RR: With your first taste of getting out on the road, what has been your experience so far? Any particular memories that standout as a highlight?
Phil/AMD: We are surprised to see so many people responding to our music. It is such a great feeling to know that we are a part of something that never goes away. Once a song has been released, it is always there for people to enjoy and I thank Turkey Vulture Records/Bungalow Records/Universal Music Distribution and DMI Entertainment for giving us that chance. The highlight of this so far is and always will be the fans. It is always so humbling to see the impact our music bestows upon them.
Rick/RR: As a vocalist, what was your first inspiration to pick up the microphone and start to sing?
Phil/AMD: Well Rick, I’ve always been more into the emotion of the words of a song and never really planned to be a singer. It just ended up that way. But, if there were vocalists out there that I would look up to personally I’d have to say Chris Cornell (Soundgarden), Janis Joplin and CCR (Creedance Clearwater Revival) will always be my favorite band. I know they’re before my time, but those guys really knew how to make good music.
Rick/RR: Where do you see this band 3-5 years from now?
Phil/AMD: I guess that depends on the fans but hopefully as far as it can go.
Rick/RR: What is it going to take to get there?
Phil/AMD: A band is a business and as long as we treat it as such, we will get there, but we can never lose touch with how great songs are created. Sometimes you have to separate business from creativity and know when to use each. A Memory Down has a lock on this formula I believe.
Rick/RR: Where is the best place for fans to get Man Apart as well as get in contact with you?
Rick/RR: Phil, thank you for taking the time to talk with us today and for the killer music you’ve given us to rock out to! Keep it cranked up to 10+!
Phil/AMD: Thanks Rick. I’ve enjoyed talking with you guys. Rock Revolt magazine has been a class “A” experience for us \m/.
~ Rick Lindner, Journalist – RockRevolt™Magazine