By: Lindsy Carrasquillo
Machinist! is a four-piece metal band from Valdosta, Georgia that formed in 2011. This Thursday, the band will be kicking off their tour for their new record, Closer To Death, at The Atlantic with Orbiter, Pyre and Oof. We were able to talk to their vocalist Jeff Hill about the new record, touring and more.
You’ll be playing your tour kick off show at The Atlantic this Thursday. What should people expect from your set?
We’re playing the new record front to back. So it’s 100 percent new music. Some of the tunes have been played live but this will be the first time we’ve played the record in liner note order. It’s gonna be cool to present it that way as a complete piece. Also expect a lot of wheezing and probably some confetti cannons.
Your new record, Closer To Death, will be released April 13. Can you discuss the writing process and any lyrical themes that the record follows?
For sure. The record thematically centers around the idea that our existence is finite and often fleeting. I’ve done a lot of thinking in the past few years about the human body and the idea that we have a specific number of times our heart will beat even under the best circumstances. Sounds like a bummer huh?
As the album will be released through Inner Strength Records. Can you talk a little bit about what working with them has been like?
Over all it’s been positive. They’ve done some pr and ads for us in magazines and stuff. It’s a long distance relationship as the labels in Philly but we’re actually gonna meet those folks on this tour when we play Philadelphia.
As the band has been together since 2011 and there has been a high increase in streaming services. Can you talk about how that has impacted you?
Honestly there are pros and cons. It’s positive because it allows us more platforms to connect with fans and to stay current with the preferred form of consumption but it also can sometimes clutter things up. For a diy band sometimes it can be tough to make sure your records are everywhere people are consuming music. Personally, I really dig bandcamp because we can sell physical merch along with the digital sales and steaming.
Are there challenges you face as a band?
The biggest for us is probably distance. We all live in different cities across Florida and Georgia. Our band writes best the old fashioned way. Locking ourselves in a room together and grinding on it. So it takes a while for us to produce new music. All of us have other bands or ventures going on so when we get to come back to Machinist! it’s really special.
With touring, what have you learned the most about being on the road?
Honestly it’s to try to plan for all the dumb little stresses of being on the road. Little shit adds up and will make you want to strangle your band mates. We try to be prepared for those things so we don’t even have to deal with them. Like making sure everyone can charge their phone or that everyone’s eating. It is also important to take advantage of traveling. Go see some stuff!
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
We are leaving on tour starting April 5th at the Atlantic in Gainesville. We play a few solo headliners and then link up with Accident Prone from Virginia for the remainder of the tour. Our new record is out everywhere on the 13th but will be available early at the table at all tour dates. You can still preorder it at Innerstrength Records’ bandcamp and grab the sweet exclusive shirt they’ve got up. Thanks for having us! Cheers!