Halfway To Winter: Cruising To The Big Time

Halfway To Winter is a band based out of the Oakland, MI area who are beginning to gain a good deal of attention, due to their energetic live shows and their recently released EP To The Wolves.  About to embark on a short Canadian tour, the guys are looking forward to doing a lot more road travel in the near future.  Their latest song Tom Cruise Control features Chris Shelley from the SoCal based band At The Skyline on co-vocals – and you can download it for FREE on HTW’s Myspace!  Fans of The Devil Wears Prada and Asking Alexandria should really be into the heavy sounds that Halfway To Winter has to offer.  Here is a recent interview we conducted with two of the Halfway guys to find out more about this up-and-coming band…

Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Halfway To Winter, and how long the band has been together.
Hey my name is Anthony and I play bass; and I’m TJ and I do screaming vocals

What is your local music scene like in Detroit, MI and how does your band fit in there?
Anthony: The local music scene in Michigan is either hit or miss most of the time; a lot of the bands here are bro-ish metalcore bands. I personally think that the bands that have been signed lately in the area (For The Fallen Dreams/We Came As Romans) have really influenced the local bands a lot here. We try to stay as original as possible though!

With most of the band members being under 18, how easy or difficult has it been to book shows because of your ages? Any other pluses or minuses to being such a young band?
Anthony: If anything, our band being younger has just been making booking shows a lot more difficult! We usually have to play at venues that are all ages because we are so young! As far as pluses and minuses go, there really aren’t any pluses that we’ve found so far ahha. Just a whole lot of minuses.

Are your parents supportive of the band and do they come to the shows?
TJ: Our parents are very supportive of the band! They really want us to do well. We honestly appreciate their support so much. And yes they have come to one or two shows before!

What could one expect from a live Halfway To Winter show?
Anthony: Expect a lot of crowd participation and have some fun! We try to make every show a little bit different from the one we played the night before. We even had a giant pillow fight at one of our shows!

Tell me about the song Tom Cruise Control – where did you get the ideas for the lyrics and what made you decide to give it away online?
TJ: Well Tom Cruise Control is our free single we just released a week or two ago for free online. We wrote the lyrics with the guest vocalist we have on the song Chris Shelley.  Chris is from the band from California named At The Skylines! We decided to give the song away for free because we wanted to give our fans something to put on there Ipods or listen to in their cars even if they don’t have the money to buy our EP.

Is there any story or concept behind the EP title To The Wolves?
Anthony: There isn’t really a big story behind the title of the EP; we went through a lot of names when we were deciding what to name it, LOTS of names haha. We finally settled on To The Wolves and it’s stuck. The title is actually lyrics from our song The Demons Don’t Need Peons To Chop Wood.

Where did you get the ideas for some of the lyrics on To The Wolves? Please cite two songs from the EP and what the lyrics are about?
TJ: Well the lyrics first song on our EP The New East Forty Sixth Street is about being yourself no matter what other people are telling you, and stay true to what you believe in. The Right Hook is about looking back at the time we were with someone and the hardships we were going through during that time.

What was it like opening for The Devil Wears Prada and did you get to meet and hang out with them at all?
Anthony: We really enjoyed playing at the Jamboree with TDWP. We got to hangout with our friends in We Came As Romans for the first time in a long time and got to watch lots of really sick bands! There were at least 3500 kids there, making it our biggest show to date. As far as hanging out with Prada, we didn’t really “hangout.”  I watched Whitechapel with them and me and their guitarist helped kick people out from behind stage who got thrown over the barricade haha.

Has the band done any touring so far, and if so, what was the experience like?
TJ: We have gone on one tour so far; it was about a year ago last summer and it was absolutely horrible! We booked it ourselves and it had one good show on it, the rest of the nights were filled with 11 hour drives, canceled shows and being shorted on payment. We still loved it though! We love being on the road and now that we are out of high school, we plan on touring as much as possible!

Any strange or unusual MySpace stories you could share?
Anthony: As far as MySpace stories, there are honestly way too many to count. One of my favorites is when this really weird country singer messaged us and he basically was telling us how horrible he thought we are and how he hated us. We had honestly no clue who this guy was. So we just ignored the message and took the higher road. So about 2 hours later he messaged us again! He continued to tell us how much he hated screaming music and that country music is the only music people will like ever. We decided to just hurt his feelings and tell him he had an extremely large forehead… That country singer was Keith Urban.  (Note from the Highwire Daze Editor: Keith Urban was unavailable for comment 🙂 )

What is the most embarrassing song you have on your IPOD?
Anthony: Well I wouldn’t say I have one defined song that is embarrassing, but I have the ENTIRE Cradle of Filth discography on my Ipod. Over 16 CD’s –  I honestly love that band so much no matter how creepy and weird they are haha. Everyone hates them in my band besides me but I can’t get enough of them.

How close are you guys to recording a full length CD?
TJ: We probably won’t be recording a full length CD unless we get signed to a label but we are writing one just in case! The new songs we are writing are a lot more intricate and well written then the ones we have out already! So be excited!

Any messages for people reading this who might want to check your band out?
Anthony: Come check us out we don’t bite and we would love to hangout with you! We always respond on MySpace and would love to be friends with you!

The Halfway to Winter lineup consists of TJ Carswell on lead vocals, David Elliott on guitar and singing vocals, Brett Ullmann on drums, Austin Knott on guitar, and Anthony Capoccia on bass.

(Interview by Kenneth Morton)

Halfway To Winter on Myspace

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