IAMWE Soldiers on With a Newly Completed Album and Upcoming Tour With Anberlin

Categories: Interview

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Derek A. Welte
It's easy to write. Learning to edit, however, takes time.

It's a lesson IAMWE is intimately familiar with. When we last talked to the local indie rockers in depth, they fully anticipated pushing out a record in December of 2011. Today, nearly a year later, they release Run Wild, or the record formally known as She's a Soldier - edited, aged and genuinely heartfelt.

Initially named for Bella, a 100-year-old woman that touched the band that drummer Josh Carlson befriended while working at a local hospice, She's a Solider was about Bella; Run Wild is instead inspired by her spirit.

The recent death of Bella hit the band hard, but they're taking her warrior spirit with them when they embark on an upcoming East Coast tour with Anberlin.

Up On the Sun: The band's good friend Bella recently passed away. How did that affect the band as a whole? How did it affect the tone of your album, considering you named it in honor of her?
Tim Maiden: Well first off we changed the title to Run Wild. Like anything sometimes things change and the emotion and design take on a different personality but that's the beauty of any art process. You have to be willing to let the journey become what it may and enjoy the ride. The tone of the record has morphed/transformed from its original design but still at its core continues to be truly inspired by our dear friend Bella. I think I was trying to honor her life too intently but if Bella had the choice, I think she'd want us to honor the impact she had on us more than anything. The songs became more mood-friendly and our title track "Run Wild" is a great example of that. We wanted to finish the record with a mood so free that nothing could stand its way.

Shane Tschida: It was very sad to see her pass but her funeral was so inspiring to me because people only had good things to say, her positive impactful personality made a difference in my life as well as so many others. People love Bella!

You're going on a national tour with Anberlin. How did you snag a spot on the tour?
Carlson: As with everything in life it seems, it's all about who you know, and we had a mutual connection through an Albuquerque radio station and he got us in contact with their management and then we spent a few months trying to work our way on to the tour! Thankfully, the guys in Anberlin were willing to give a no-name band out of Arizona this great shot.

You're releasing the album on November 6. You released your first single around a year ago. How has the album's sound evolved and changed since then?
Maiden: I think many of the songs went from contrived to free emotion. Our first single, "So They Say," is definitely more literal in context and it works great but we wanted to explore other avenues in the creation process. I was losing touch of the emotional makeup of the songs and wanted to find moments of inspiration that no pen and paper could produce. Oh, and we tried to stay away from any more drum songs. But overall we were looking for gems -- and I don't mean singles. In fact, we spent more time writing [and] choosing the non-singles than anything.

What exactly can we expect from Run Wild?
Maiden: We fought for every minute on this record. We wrote a lot of material in order to find these songs and it was a very difficult process at times. I just about drove my band crazy but thankfully they stuck with the process and I feel we found something special. Expect songs that won't let you go, that haunt you -- in a good way, of course. We sought out raw emotion in these songs that would captivate your ears.

Last time I talked to you, you said the album was due December 2011. That's quite a bit of a delay. What held it back?
Maiden: [Laughs] Well, it's hard to blame one thing or another but let's just say when you create any form of art, the moment you let go is the moment it's no longer yours. So, I guess more than anything we wanted to make sure we had peace with it no matter how long it took. On this note I'd like to give a shout out to four of the best friend/bandmates out there for their patience and perseverance in this project. Thank you to everyone who has been so patient with us and this record. We now give you what has been our baby for the last couple years and we do [it] with joy.


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