The progressive metalcore sounds of Erra has returned and the results will astound the senses! Their latest collection of sonic artistry is entitled Augment, now available from Tragic Hero Records. Displaying a tremendous amount of imagination and intrigue within their compositions, Augment by Erra is destined to gain the Birmingham, Alabama based collective a good deal of attention. We recently caught up with lead vocalist Garrison Lee to find out more about the grand augmentation of Erra and their stunning adventures in sound. Read on…
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Erra, and how long the band has been together.
My name is Garrison and I am the vocalist for Erra.
Where are you based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?
We are from Birmingham, Al. Since we do not play our home state a lot it is hard to tell how the scene is doing, honestly. I will say that we recently played our CD release show for Augment at home and it was a great success. As far as local recommendations go I’d say you should check out Stand Alone Complex and Deleo.
Is there any story or concept behind the CD title Augment?
The idea behind our album title is the process of growth and expansion that we have experienced as a band and individuals since our debut album, Impulse. We wanted an album name that encompassed this ideal as simply possible.
Select two songs from Augment and what inspired the lyrics.
As a lyricist, I always try and write in such a way that provokes emotion from the reader or listener. I want people to feel what I feel when expressing myself in this format. That being said, Spirits Away is one of my favorite songs lyrically. That song is packed with emotion. The song is inspired by the idea of being so in love with something or someone that you almost can’t bear it, yet at the same time you’d give your life to maintain it. Hybrid Earth is a bit less personal to me, but still remains fraught with emotion. This song weighs in heavily on the ideals of interaction between societies and individuals. Using ancient stories to reference the trickling down of knowledge and instincts from generations, this song pushes the idea that what we have all accepted as truth may actually be falsified information we have been told to mold us into the norm of society today.
How does Augment compare to your previous effort Impulse?
I’d like to think that Augment is a more aggressive and mature version of Impulse. We did our best to represent the band that everyone loved from Impulse with as much improvement as possible.
Who did the cover art for Augment and how much input did you have on it?
Aaron Marsh did our album art. We told him that we wanted something with a bit of geometry and that we also wanted it to reference our previous record. This is why there is a reappearance of a female figure on the cover. Other than that, he had full artistic freedom and we were very satisfied with the end result.
What could one expect from a live Erra show?
We bring as much energy as we can to our live performance while maintaining the ability to cleanly play our songs. We also like to joke around with our fans sometimes…if you ever see us when we have a technical difficulty during our set you will hear either Jesse or me saying ridiculous things to our fans to kill time.
How did your recent tour with Reflections go and what were some of the highlights?
It was a smaller tour, but definitely had its moments. I’d say the best times were each of our home shows. Both were incredibly fun times.
Any strange or scary stories from the road you could share?
Well, one that I actually did not get to experience myself was when the guys were on the road without me and saw an alligator eat a full-grown dog right behind the venue, haha. How absurd is that?
What was the experience like playing at the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival and did you get to meet any of the bigger bands?
That was a mile-marker in our careers, I feel. I personally did not meet any of the bigger bands but I did get to hang out with so many of my good friends in other bands. It is something that I cannot wait to do again.
If you could open up for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Easy. One of my all-time favorite bands, Deftones. Nothing would make me happier to play with those dudes.
What’s up next for Erra in the New Year?
You’ll be able to find us on some great tours.
Any final words of wisdom?
Well, if you buy our album, Augment you will be supremely pleased and it will make you a better person. That’s it!
Garrison Lee- Vocals
Jesse Cash- Guitar/Vocals
Alan Rigdon- Guitar
Alex Ballew- Drums
Sean Price – Bass
(Interview by Ken Morton)
Erra on Facebook