Genre: Melodic Groove Metal
Formed in the blue-collar city of Flint, Michigan, the music scene veterans of Torn Away have come together to play melodic groove metal with engaging lyrics, hypnotic vocals, incendiary leads, and dynamic rhythms. A sledgehammer with ball peen precision, some might say.
Torn Away carefully construct songs designed to bang your head while resonating emotionally and gutturally, each member taking influence from trailblazing bands like Black Sabbath, Megadeth, Pink Floyd, and Iron Maiden to more modern sonic titans like Alice in Chains, Seether, Acid Bath, and Down. Featuring equal parts melody and aggression, Torn Away's music will burrow deep into the grey matter and reverberate in your skull long after the audible energy has dissipated.
“Torn Away is one of the heaviest hitting bands out there. They bring down the house at every show!”
Jay Coffey, Verbal Abuse Entertainment
Corona Virus Quarantined E-Mail Interview w/ UnHinged
What first got you into music?
I have very fond memories of growing up and listening to the music that my parents enjoyed. My dad especially was a huge classic rock fan. For as long as I can remember, I was listening to stuff like Van Halen, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, Boston, Aerosmith. I remember when I was about my dad bought "No More Tears" by Ozzy Osbourne on cassette and I thought that was just about the heaviest thing in the world. At that point I was familiar with stuff like Def Leppard, which I still love to this day, but Ozzy was just so heavy when you compare it to "Pour Some Sugar on Me." As I grew, I was able to bridge the gaps between both of those loves of Def Leppard and Ozzy. I am always preaching the importance of finding the right balance between melody and aggression.
What is your creative process like?
It can be anything, really. Typically in Torn Away, somebody will just start jamming on a riff or an idea, then the rest of us will join in and see what we can do to shape it and develop it. We have a song called "Viscera Enigma" that was built around a really unique drum groove that our drummer Kevin Bindschatel started playing. We've got songs built on bass riffs. We have guitar driven songs. We've never really been a band where one person will write a song and say "You have to play this, this way at this time." That might work for Metallica, but I don't think that would be right for Torn Away. We really enjoy the collaborative process.
Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Man, that's a wild question! I think Corey Taylor could be a lot of fun since he is so dynamic in everything that he does. Joey Z., the guitar player from Life of Agony would be a blast, I just love everything that he does, I love his style. David Gilmour would be absolutely insane... I think I could just play the most basic, rudimentary riff and be in awe of the things he could do over that. As far as drummers go, I think Tommy Lee would be so much fun! Motley Crue was my very first concert ever. I think Tommy Lee doesn't get enough credit for his drum playing, he's more well known for his shenanigans, which is a shame. Dude is an absolute powerhouse.
If you could open a show for any artist, who would it be?
Probably the smart answer would be Metallica, as that would get a ton of new eyes and ears on Torn Away... plus Metallica is an all time favorite for me. I would have to say either Metallica or Alice in Chains.
How did ya'll meet?
Our drummer Kevin and our guitar player Mike Landers had been playing together for a little bit, and when I moved to the Flint area, I actually answered a Craigslist ad looking for a bass player to join a heavy band. I know a lot of people have horror stories and bad experiences going through Craigslist, but it has honestly worked out really well for us. Kevin and Mike are a couple of my best friends. We are always sending each other stupid memes and music videos and whatnot, even when we are not on band time. Our singer Cameron joined up with us late last year, found him through a local musician Facebook group and he fit in absolutely perfectly with us as well. We have been very fortunate that we have not only the right people for the band, but the right personalities that mesh well together. There is very little band drama or personality conflicts which makes it such a joy to play music together.. We are able to focus on the music, rather than petty BS.
Explain how you came up with your band name.
Torn Away is actually the name of one of the first songs we did as a band. It really checked a lot of boxes for us, in that it really has a great balance of melody and heavy parts. The name Torn Away also represented where we were at in life as individuals. Being from Flint, we know hardships better than most. Every guy in this band has had some really awful things happen to us in life. I won't speak for the other guys, but I came home from work one day and my wife and baby daughter were gone... She up and left when my daughter was four months old and I didn't see her again for five months after that. Torn Away to me represents being at a better place in your life and being thrust into a new reality. Bad things happen to everyone, that's human nature... That's part of life... It's how you react to the adversity is what defines you as a person. We try to take these awful things that happen to us, and use it as a catalyst to make something really positive for us.
What was the best concert you've seen and why?
Probably when I saw Megadeth for the first time. It was just a terrific performance all the way around... Dave was 100 percent in his zone. It was on the Cryptic Writings tour which wasn't their best album, but at that point, they were playing all my favorite songs live anyways. Sevendust opened the show on their first tour, before anyone knew who they were. I think their debut album had JUST dropped, I hadn't heard them on the radio yet. They came out and started with that rhythmic syncopated riff to "Black" in time with an orange strobe light and I just saw like a tidal wave of people moshing towards me in the light flashes. That was crazy intense. The best shows I've seen in the last couple of years were probably Life of Agony.... and I saw Steel Panther a few years ago and that was just so much fun as well.
What is the most useless talent you have?
My ability to create dumb dad jokes with my daughter, and my willingness to look like a dork to make her laugh. It's a great thing for me and her, but to a third party watching from somewhere else, it's probably the dumbest thing in the world... I have no shame in making stupid faces or acting like a goofball with her.
Do you sing in the shower? What songs?
I only sing in the shower about half of the time... Half of the time, I listen to stand up comedy on Pandora while I'm in the shower and laugh my ass off.. .The other half of the time, I'll throw in my favorite CDs from back in the day.... I do a lot of nostalgic stuff like Full Devil Jacket... Mutha's Day Out... Damn Yankees is a HUGE guilty pleasure for me... Those songs are deeply ingrained into my DNA at this point.
Which famous musicians do you admire?
Chad Gray from Hellyeah and Mudvayne... When I was about 22, me and some buddies drove four hours from our hometown of Sioux Falls, South Dakota to Omaha, Nebraska to see Disturbed and Mudvayne at a little tiny rock club. My friend's car got towed during the show, and this was before the time that everyone had cell phones... You still had to find a payphone and call collect. We didn't have the money with us to get the car back, and we couldn't get a hold of any of our parents since it was well after midnight at that point. We were hanging out at a 7-11 after the show, trying to figure out our next move and Chad Gray came in to buy some stuff. He started chatting us up and we told him the situation. He was like,"dude, that sucks... I'm really sorry." and then he left. A minute later, he walked back into the store, walked right up to me and handed me a fifty dollar bill. I know that at that point, they weren't raking in the big bucks, they were still a regional opening band. For him to give us that money like that with no questions asked, has really stuck with me. He will forever get high marks with me for doing that for a couple of down on their luck kids. I am a huge fan of paying it forward, and have tried to use the example that he has set to help out when and where I can.
What is the most trouble you've ever gotten into?
I got arrested the day I graduated high school for getting into a fight with my brother. I had to sit four days in county before I could see a judge. They ended up dropping the case because it was dumb in the first place... But I had been 18 for about 3 weeks at that point. I spent most of my time reading books, but it made a big enough impact to realize that I don't want to go back.