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Interview: Nate Toussaint from The Brave

The Brave

On the verge of dropping their first full length album, ‘Epoch’, Brisbane metalcore outfit The Brave are gearing up for the most intense few months of their career. Following a string of single releases and non-stop touring, we sat down to have a relaxed chat with vocalist Nate Toussaint to gauge how the band was feeling about the year so far, ‘Epoch’, and the prospect of bigger and better things to come.

Let’s talk Dreamless first of all, the brand new single, an absolute gem of a track. Tell us a bit about what went into it man!

So yeah, with the recording of Dreamless, it was always a song that stuck out for me. I really thought the riffs in it and the style of the song was really cool. We started talking, y’know, “we really want to get a guest artist” to feature on a track, that one always stuck out, and then when we heard Marcus (Northlane frontman) was keen we automatically were like “yep this is the track he’ll be perfect”. From there we just figured out where we wanted him to feature and the chorus was always the part I wanted him to feature on ’cause I wanted to take advantage of his voice and his singing ability!

I read that you guys were quite blown away by his vocal ability and his prowess in the studio, was that a massive motivator for you guys personally, to push yourselves that little bit harder?

Yeah, for sure! After I saw [him in the studio] it was a real eye-opener watching a vocalist of his calibre and what he’s able to do. When you see someone who has this amazing ability you kind of want to lift your standards up to theirs, so over the last few days when I was doing vocals I was definitely pushing harder and harder…it was a motivator for sure!

The Brave’s recently been picked up by UNFD, it’s seemed like a whirlwind ever since, non-stop tours and now only days out from releasing your debut album. Have you had time to sit back and reflect like, did that just happen? 

Yeah man, absolutely! Everything’s been pretty busy lately, but even that in itself we’ve never been this busy, so to stand back and look at it like that…it’s like “this is amazing!”. We’ve never really been a lazy band, we’ve always wanted to be doing something, so to see our year being planned out even down to the little things like interviews or photo shoots is really cool, we’ve been loving it!

I think we were in the van on the way to Sydney or Melbourne, on the Dream On Dreamer tour, and we all just started talking about it…about how cool it was, how excited we are and to just push it as hard as we can. So, it’s sunk in, but I think it’ll keep sinking in once new opportunities start arising, so I’m super keen to just see what happens!

And of course ‘Epoch’ is due out next Friday, how stoked are you to finally get this thing out for people to hear?

Oh dude, (laughs) we’ve been sitting on this thing for over a year! We’ve had it in our possession for just over a year now. We had been in talks with UNFD since we had sort of done it and we passed it on to them and they were really keen. The plan was that they they just wanted to hold out on releasing it, but to have an album in your possession, wanting everyone to hear it for over a year, we can’t wait for Friday!

We can’t wait for it to be out, to start that process and to be able to tour the album and to play the songs live and to have people hopefully know them. Y’know, we’ve played our set a few times now and there’s a couple of songs already out that people know the words to but there’s also plenty of songs that people don’t really know, so we can’t wait for everyone to hear it and get to know the songs!

Was it an overwhelming process going from your first EP in ‘Endless’ to all of sudden having to write a full length album, or did everything kind of just fall into place?

It definitely came naturally. After we released the EP and we knew we wanted to release new stuff, an album was always the goal, so that’s what we set out to do. It worked out that we had enough material and happy enough with it to release it in a full length.

I guess when we got in the studio it was a bit more of an overwhelming experience. Y’know, we were used to an EP, so in the studio environment for [the EP] was a lot more relaxed and a bit more playful, like “let’s figure things out, we can try this, we can try that”. But with the album it was definitely more business, and it guess at that time UNFD had showed a lot of interest in us, so there wasn’t pressure as much as we just wanted to make sure the album really stood out and could do well in the scene. So yeah, that wasn’t pressure…we just wanted to push it as hard as we could for ourselves.

For many, ‘Epoch’ is a slightly odd word to come across. I guess for those who  haven’t come across it before, can you give us a bit of insight into what it means and how it fits the concept of the album?

Yeah man! So an Epoch basically is a point in time that holds a significant meaning. So when we were trying to think of a name, that always really stood out to me but I never really dove into what it meant. But as time went on, it just kept coming up and coming up cause we wanted a title that kept in the theme of the album which was time, y’know, so I finally looked into it and the meaning just jumped out at me! The meaning held a lot of value about what we wanted this album to be.

Not to say that we want this album to be something that stays in the history books, I mean that would be pretty nice (laughs), but for us personally it was definitely a moment in our lives that was really changing so that’s why we went with ‘Epoch’. It felt linked in with the album theme, but really linked with our personal experience and attachment with this album.

I’ve noticed a few of the songs battle quite personal issues as well as targeting certain political topics, especially in tracks like Ignited Youth. Has the ability to use your musical platform to speak out and challenge standpoints meant a great deal to the band?

Umm I guess, we don’t really pose ourselves as a political band and/or an “emo” band or something (laughs). I just tend to write about whatever’s going on in my life or what I feel I need to get out, I tend to use writing lyrics as a form of therapy in a way for myself. To get things off my chest or to just have it in front of me and read back on it and address it in that way. And then with political things, it’s more about the things I see that I don’t really agree upon or that I feel is changing in the world and to have people relate to any of it is one of my main goals.

Not only is it a sort of therapy for me to get my issues out on the table, I hope that people can also relate to the same things or to the lyrics that I write and find a bit of solace or comfort in them!

The Brave’s new album ‘Epoch’ will be released on Friday, 5th of August.

Read Why We’re Excited For ‘Epoch’ HERE

The Brave Epoch Artwork

Written by Sam Muggleton