Salt Lake City’s HEARTLESS BREAKERS are one of these pop punk, sweet melodic rock bands that still move me, without regard to how old I am. Featuring ex-DAYTRADER guitarist Matt Mascarenas, the band pairs punk rock energy with very solid arrangements and great, sentimental and emotional melodies that will draw a smile of instant recognition after just one listen.
The band released their debut EP “Prescriptions” on July 23rd, 2013 and re-released its acoustic rendition called “Lighter Doses” on January 14th, 2014. Read the interview below to learn more about the inception of these records, their exciting live setting and a lot more.
Hey guys! What’s up? How are you doin’ this crazy winter? How’s Salt Lake? :)
It’s been a busy winter so far. We spent most of it in the studio and on tour. Now we are back home to horrible inversion. The air in Salt Lake City is pretty bad right now making everyone feel like we’re constantly on the verge of getting sick.
Wow, sounds sick and cold, haha. What else is unique about living in Salt Lake?
There’s an unreal amount of talented artists here. We’re fortunate to be surrounded and inspired by so many of our friends.
So Matt, HEARTLESS BREAKERS is known as ex-DAYTRADER (Rise Records), so we can’t miss out on asking about what’s up with the other guys from the old pack?
It’s interesting to see that a lot because HEARTLESS BREAKERS is a completely different band. haha. Everyone else from the DAYTRADER front are still staying busy with music. Derrick is playing in CENTURIES, Robert is in the band TEST OF TIME, Gary is in CRIME IN STEREO, and Tym is in SOME STRANGER.
… all of which are really amazing bands. How has the industry and your local scene changed since you first started out?
Everything moves a lot faster. Many artists have been trying to keep up by constantly releasing new music and staying on tour as much as possible. It’s caused a lot of bands to progress faster at crafting their skill and others to fall through the cracks by releasing material that’s not on par.
So… HEARTLESS BREAKERS features members from a bunch of many different bands. How did this new melodic rock idea form? What influenced you to get together?
We’ve been friends and in bands with each other since high school. We’ve all been playing in several bands at a time for years now and have had the opportunity to play music and learn from a lot of different people. Us starting HEARTLESS BREAKERS was a very easy transition as soon as we had a clear vision of what we wanted to do because we are all so used to writing music and spending all our time together.
There’s a couple more guys supporting you in your live act. There’s even Sam Richards of Deathwish’s CULT LEADER in the company. Sounds heavier, haha ;) How do you approach your live shows? Why do you need so many people involved?
We’ve been playing extended versions of our songs live and it’s been great so far. I’ve always been fascinated by bands that made their set unique to the show they are playing and excited to be implementing that with this band.
Sam and I have been playing in bands together for several years and was hanging out during a lot of the writing process for Prescriptions.
Yup, so I guess that’s why you decided an acoustic rendition of the record, right? Tell me more about the initial idea behind “Lighter Doses”.
We’ve been planning on releasing an acoustic rendition of Prescriptions since we went into the studio. We wrote Prescriptions in an apartment on acoustics so it felt necessary to document them the way we were originally playing them. Our friend Scott Wasilewski from HULDRA wrote and tracked the cello and I love his contribution. Lighter Doses also concludes the era we were in when writing the songs. We started tracking Lighter Doses in November of 2013 and by then I feel like we had become happier, well, at least more optimistic compared to where we were when we tracked Prescriptions.
So, how have listeners been reacting to the record in your eyes?
We’ve been able to make so many new friends since announcing this band back in May of last year. That alone is so cool to us. I’d say things are going well so far. I’m really excited about this band.
The new record is up for “Name Your Own Price” on bandcamp. Do you think free downloads are good for the music industry? Isn’t it spoiling artists and make them forget about the visual aspects of their releases?
It’s going to be different for every band as a lot more comes into play. We’ve chosen to offer our songs based on donation because we want people to have our music. One aspect of it that’s been extremely cool is that we get a lot more people interacting with us who donate sending us emails telling us what they think and why they chose to pay for the songs. The reason we chose to make Lighter Doses a digital release was due to not wanting to wait to come up with the money for a proper physical release, especially because these are renditions of songs that have already been released. Instead, we decided to release it digitally and only have to pay for recording and be able to release it whenever we wanted rather than wait to come up with the pressing money and then be forced to really stress on making money back from the release.
Alright, but you mentioned that you spent most of the winter in the studio. Are we talkin’ a new record here?
We’ve been writing since releasing Lighter Doses and I’m excited on the process so far. We don’t have details set for the next release yet though.
Guys, you’re still unsigned, right? Are there plans to shop around for a label deal?
That’s right. We all enjoy being a part of every process in the band and have kept busy continuing to do things ourselves. We may send them out, but we also into the idea releasing it under our imprint Mountain Music, like we did with Lighter Doses & Prescriptions.
Why would a band like HB want to work with a record label?
We’d like to add anybody to the team that shares the same vision and the desire to be a part of it. We’ve been able to work and collaborate with the talent and passion of our closest friends up til now and want to continue the same way. It’s working and it feels right.
Ok guys, so after your last January run, what plans do you have for the coming year?
We are going finish writing the next record, get in the studio, and back out on the road. We want to play overseas as soon as possible. I
Any plans to travel a bit further with HEARTLESS BREAKERS?
We’ve got a lot we’re working on. We’ve got a long way to go still.
Ok, I guess that’s about it. Would you like to add anything else?
Thank you for being a part of this. Listen loud.
Thanks a lot for your time!