Interviews

LA hardcore vets STRIFE hit European roads; discuss touring, tease new music in 2020! [EXCLUSIVE]

California hardcore veterans STRIFE are offering us a few more opportunities to celebrate their legacy. The influential band has announced a string of European shows in 7 countries, with a kick off show in Leeds on October 3rd! All gigs will feature German hardcore heavyweights RISK IT!

Hungry for their new music, new updates and their take on this European trek, we sat down with STRIFE‘s Andrew Kline (WAR Records) for a little interrogation. Check out the full itinerary below and scroll down to see the full interview, including an exciting teaser for new music in 2020 and a bunch of older and newer live videos to get you pumped for the tour!

STRIFE tour!

03.10. LEEDS (UK) TEMPLE OF BOOM
04.10. LONDON (UK) NEW CROSS INN
05.10. AALST (BEL) CINEMA
06.10. MAASTRICHT (NL) MUZIEKGIETERIJ
07.10. WIESBADEN (GER) SCHLACHTHOF
08.10. ZÜRICH (CH) WERK21
09.10. NÜRNBERG (GER) Z-BAU
10.10. LODZ (PL) MAGNETOFON
11.10. CHEMNITZ (GER) AJZ
12.10. PRAGUE (CZ) CLUB 007
13.10. BERLIN (GER) BINUU

Hey guys, thanks so much for sitting down with us. How are you? How’s been your Summers so far?

Thank you! Summer has been good so far! We are all very busy in our personal lives with our families and work, so it will be good to hit the road for a few weeks!

Personally, I have been busy with my label (WAR Records) as well as my other 2 bands, Berthold City and World Be Free.

WAR Records put out 3 records so far this year… Berthold City’s newest 7” called “What Time Takes”, Fixation’s “Into The Pain”, and Enforced’s amazing LP “At The Walls.” We just announced our newest signing as well, Reserving Dirtnaps from Memphis Tennessee. They play really heavy hardcore in the vein of Hatebreed, Merauder, and Death Threat.

Berthold City has been playing shows to support this 7”, and we just recorded a few new songs, one of which will be on an upcoming comp on Reaper Records.

World Be Free has been gearing up for our first ever European Tour, which is happening with Judge, right before the Strife tour.

You can definitely say that I have been busy!

JUDGE and WORLD BE FREE European tour dates

Any cool shows you’ve attended, or solid new bands on the radar?

I have seen a bunch of great shows this year… Rick and I just went and saw Spiritual Cramp the other day with Fell to Low and a few others. Spiritual Cramp is one of my favorite new bands, and they sound like a mix of the Talking Heads and The Clash. They were great! Sound and Fury was amazing this year… Getting to see bands like Have Heart, Mindforce, Fiddlehead, Incendiary all on the same bill was great, and the crowd reaction was exactly what I wish every HC show was like. Stagedives, sing alongs, smiles, no violence, and no horse shoe!

There are a bunch of great bands out right now… I’ll shout out some from the West Coast… Check out Drain, Gulch, Dying For It, Clueless, Tuning, Power Alone, Heat, Headcount, Jawstruck, Fell to Low, Dare, and Dead Heat.

Touring and being on the road was probably hard & exhausting 20 years ago, and you’re not pushing it so much, for obvious reasons, but what’s your take on touring after all these years?

We are all very busy with life, but we love to tour and we love that we are still able to do this after all these years. We obviously don’t tour full time, but that’s what makes it special. As a band, we get along better than we ever have, and it’s great to spend time together and play music.

We are very fortunate that people still care, and that people still want to hear our songs.

STRIFE live at @newagerecords fest by @motionscape_music

STRIFE live at @newagerecords fest by @motionscape_music

How does it feel to go back to Europe? How often do you come back here?

For a few years in a row we were coming to Europe at least once a year. I think it has been at least 2 years since we have been back, so we are really looking forward to it. I am excited that we are playing with Risk It! as well, as they are great guys and a great band! I think these upcoming shows will be awesome!

Do you see any changes in European hardcore scene compared to the old days?

The biggest change that I see (and I see this all over the world) is that HC kids look, dance, and act the same almost all over the world. I think this really has a lot to do with the internet and the access people have to live videos and stuff. I remember our first time touring Europe and the kids there all looked different and were totally doing there own unique dances and stuff when the bands would play. Now kids more or less do the same thing all over the world. It’s not a good or bad thing, but it’s definitely the biggest change that I have seen.

What European bands, old and new, you’re into lately?

As I said before, Risk It! is great! Some other European bands that deserve some attention are Reality Slap, Spark, Chain Reaction, Higher Power, Born From Pain, No Turning Back… There are so many great bands from Europe and the UK.

What impressions do younger bands make on you these days? Do you feel the spirit is still alive? How thriving is the punk scene in 2019?

I do a record label, so I am constantly checking out new bands. The spirit is definitely still alive. I think (aside from a handful of bands) that hardcore is much smaller than it was back in the 90’s… Hardcore moves in waves, and the scene will get bigger and then smaller. I think right now, the HC scene is on it’s way back up, and you have bands like Turnstile, Knocked Loose, and Code Orange that are bringing HC to the masses and hopefully inspiring new generations of HC kids.

STRIFE live in Madison, Wisconsin - A New Hope Fest. 📷 by @eeesarchives138

STRIFE live in Madison, Wisconsin – A New Hope Fest, by @eeesarchives138

How do you stay motivated and dedicated to your journey and remain one of the longest running hardcore punk bands on the planet?

I think the key really is just maintaining our friendships within the band. NO ONE would want to take time off from our lives if we did not get along. At the end of the day, we do this because we love it.

Ok, so lastly, it’s been 4 years since your last studio release, ”Incision”. Give us some update on your new music, when and what we can expect and how eagerly you are awaiting to step into the studio and track some new tunes.

We have actually been in the studio working on some music. We have about 14 new songs tracked, and once we are back from tour Rick will start laying down some vocals. Look out for a new album at some point in 2020!

Thanks so much for your time, guys. Is there anything else you would like to say or talk about? Feel free to drop your ending lines and take care. Cheers from Warsaw!

As always, Thanks for the support! We are playing Magnetofon in Lodz on 10/10, so I hope you can come out the show and hang out! Thanks.

STRIFE live at the Alano Club in Long Beach by @davemandel

STRIFE live at the Alano Club in Long Beach by @davemandel

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