Warsaw, Poland’s SETTING THE WOODS ON FIRE are heading on a mini tour tonight! We managed to caught them for a last minute interview and make them talk about their new line-up, touring, and more! Check it out below.
UK’s Engineer Records, who signed them last year, commented on their 2011 EP “Ruins”: “It packs a monstrous dose of energy, noise, and emotion. The skill with which the band produces their relentless wall of guitar noise is second only to their great technique and their rare talent for writing thoughtful and addictive melodies. It displays a fresh yet mature side to a band that doesn’t shy away from experimenting in order to find their own unique sound.”
Hey, guys! Good to have you here. So you’re heading for a short trip, right? Tell us more about it. What’s special about it?
Hey, thanks for having us! That’s right, we’re just about to leave for out four-day-mini-tour. We’re playing in Warsaw at Hydrozagadka on 6th (dec), Wolow at Gramofon (14th Baraque Festival) on 7th, Wroclaw at Falanster on 8th and Gdynia at Desdemona on 9th. We’re really excited as it’s out first tour with the new lineup.
Why such a short run? Are there any plans for a bigger trek alongside some other bands?
Well partially because as I mentioned it’s our first tour with the new line up and partially it’s our take on weekend touring which is quite common in Poland. Our previous tours were usually like 7 days in a row and from our experience it’s quite hard to get people to the show on Tuesday night especially when it’s our first show in a town. We still think that the longer tour is the better but as I said, it’s just a test, call it a warm up tour.
We’d love to tour more in 2013, I mean as much as possible and everywhere. Now we have a stable line up, we all want the same thing, finish the new record and tour a lot. We will play anywhere we can get.
Sure thing. Is there a difference in crowds characteristic for these cities? A lot of people showing up to support you guys in particular places you’ve already toured?
Warsaw is always good for us, it’s our home town and we’ve got a lots of friends here. Everytime we play here we see some new people as well which is awesome. We love our city. Wolow is a very cool small town with a great history of independent music. Home of bands like BLUE RAINCOAT and Baraque festival on which we’re lucky enough to play for a second time. We’re looking forward to play there again, those people knows what’s goin on. Wroclaw is always a mistery. It’s different each time. We don’t have a lot of friends there yet but there are people that I’ve seen on few of our shows. We hope to make some new friends there, the city is gorgeous.
Gdynia has been absolutely amazing last time. Audience reception was great and we can’t wait for more!
How did you hook up with Ryan Dylla? What’s his story?
We were auditioning new drummers and he just moved from Austin to Warsaw. We met, he turned out to be a great fit for us, we were really lucky, you got to see him live.
What caused the whole switch in your line-up?
Our drummer decided to left the band.We’ve been working on a record for the whole summer. We actually had studio booked for september so we had to cancel it. At the same time we found out that the building where we had a practice room in is going to be demolished so suddenly we became a homeless band without a drummer. That really was quite the shit storm to hit us all at once. It’s the main reason why 2012 was slow for us as a band.
Was it difficult trying to get new members?
It always is [laughs]. Well honestly we were very lucky. We found a new drummer really fast. We were sure it will take a lot more time. It’s a huge change for a band, we were not ready for this. That’s when we made this decision about expanding our line up. If we’re forced to make a change let it be a huge change. We were talking about adding a 2nd guitar for a while but were kinda stuck to an idea of being a power trio. There was this guy, Janek, a friend who we knew is a great player and is totally into the same music. We were seeing each other on shows and one time we just asked him if he wants to give it a shot. Now it’s better than ever.
I have this feeling that you’re not putting too much of hours on the road. Is there a chance to change that? Aren’t you tempted to hit European roads and go even farther?
As we mentioned, last year was hard for us but we want to tour as much as possible in 2013. We had few attempts to tour Europe in the past but when few main dates got canceled the whole tour had to be as well, it was like this at least 2 times, I really feel we were unlucky. Anyway we will totally try again in 2013, if anyone would like to see us in their town, just let us know through facebook or [email protected] We’re ready!
You’ve been writing your new record for some time. Can you give us any details on that?
Yeah there was a time this summer that we almost had it all written. But the line up change kinda stopped us. With 2nd guitar and new drummer we’re rewriting some of the new material and it should be ready to record in early 2013. Having new band members really is inspiring so there are some new ideas as well.
Are you looking for a new label to put it out elsewhere?
We’re really happy with our current label which is UK’s Engineer Records. This guys are working hard and are good people. Of course we’re always open for new opportunities to release our music and you never know what will happen.
Is there a set of formats you’re already thinking about when it comes to the new outing?
Our first record was released on 12″ vinyl and digitally, than ep only a cd + digital, I think it’s time for both now [laughs].
You’re kind of within a stone’s throw of the Polish hardcore punk scene, but you seem to be not tight with the core bands at all. There haven’t been many gigs mixing pure hardcore punk bands and post hardcore / emotive packs like yourselves. The question is: do you regret it? Wouldn’t you like it to be more like in Philly, or other places where different genres and styles create their common punk scene?
We totally do regret it. I mean we’re trying to play with different bands but from our experience people seem to like having similar bands together and complain about differential line ups. I wish it was more like other places, I mean come on, THURSDAY touring with CONVERGE, The Get Up Kids and Coalesce split, Im finding it perfect.
How do you feel the Warsaw scene is at the moment, and what bands are you stoked about at the moment?
There are a lot of good bands here but we never see them as a one big scene. There seem to be just bands and their friend’s bands that they play together with all the time and than another mini scene of bands doing exactly the same thing. I’d love to see them crossing their paths from time to time but still there’s a lot of good things going on. I guess our fave band here is CAPITAL. We toured with them a lot and are always excited to see them live. Sometime during the summer we’ve seen this band called I HOPE YOU DIE, really good show. We’re playing with 2 new Warsaw based bands on 6.12 – BROOKS WAS HERE which is noisy and raw trio and THE SKY IS, something for post-rock fans. I recently picked up THE LOWEST 12″ which is a great record.
Great bands, indeed.
Guys, do you have any other side projects going on right now?
No right now, we’re 100% focused and devoted to SETTING THE WOODS ON FIRE.
So.. summing it up, what does the next year look like for SETTING THE WOODS ON FIRE?
Plenty hours of studio time and a lot of touring. That’s the plan!
Any plans for Christmas? [smiles]
I guess we will spend some time with family and some at our rehearsal spot.
[smiles] Thanks so much for your time. Would you like to add anything else? Feel free.. Cheers!
Thanks! Go to out shows and say hi!