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Narrow Hearts – The Highwire Daze Legacy Interview

Narrow Hearts – The Highwire Daze Legacy Interview

Narrow Hearts – The Highwire Daze Legacy Interview

Originally published: 01/11/13

“Narrow Hearts” is a band that released an album titled “Make This Yours” in 2012.  The music video for their song “Unconscious Hearts/Unconscious Minds” pays tribute to victims of mass shootings in the United States, including those affected by tragedies in Aurora, CO; Oak Creek, WI; New York City, NY; and Newtown, CT. The lyrics reflect on heartbreak, violence, and the impact of such events on society.  Here is an email interview we did with Narrow Hearts from 2013!

Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Narrow Hearts and how long the band has been together.
My name is Jared Block, I play guitar in Narrow Hearts. The band under the name Narrow Hearts has been around for just over one year.

Where is Narrow Hearts based out of and what is the music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?
We are from Milwaukee, WI. The music scene has seen its better days in the area, with metal shows vanishing and venues shutting down. A few of the bands around the area that we are lucky to call friends are City of Ghosts, Deadweight, and Abide By Me. However, the hardcore scene in the city is alive and more vibrant than ever, with bands like Expire and FocusedxMinds in the same hometown I am proud to be from Milwaukee.

How did you wind up signing to We Are Triumphant?
A little before our EP “Strive to Change” came out we were sending links and presskits to various labels. WAT was a part of that group and they were very interested right off the bat. The rest is history.

Is there any story or concept behind the title Make This Yours?
The story/concept/view that the title means exactly what it says. Make this yours. Take what we are offering with the music, the lyrics, the message, and make it your own. This band is for who ever listens to it, you are the reason we make music and we offer everything to you.

Please select two songs from Make This Yours and what inspired the lyrical content.
I spent a lot of time on the lyrical content of a few songs off of MTY. I am very proud of the consecutive songs Unconscious Hearts/Unconscious Minds. They are separate tracks but work as the same song. Unconscious Hearts is an instrumental that acts as a buffer in preparation of Minds. There is a quote of Alfred from The Dark Knight in the song that reads: “Some men aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.” Now some would think that that quote might mean that we support violence or are just putting it in there for fun like some other bands would, but it actually describes the enemy of the song in Unconscious Minds.
Unconscious Minds was the last song written on MTY, we wrote it and recorded it in the same day (it also happened to be one of the last days in the studio). During our time at the studio, I would always watch the news every morning in preparation of the day. I had been noticing the amount of public shootings and terrible things that were happening and it was hard for me to not think about it during the recording process. On the day of recording this song, I was having trouble writing the lyrics, I had no motivation or ideas about anything. I was practically burnt out. I happened to be watching the news at the time and the story of an Empire State building shooting came on from New York City. Right then and there I decided that the song would be used as a tribute to the innocent lives that were taken in that shooting and in the previous shootings that had happened while we were in the studio (the Dark Knight shooting in Aurora, CO and the Sikh Temple shooting in Oak Creek, WI). I used something in our music that I never had thought of using before, and that motivation was anger. It is a song that makes my blood boil when I think about what it means, and I am very glad we are able to share such an emotion with people.

Who produced Make This Yours and what was it like working with them?
Josh Schroeder of Random Awesome! Studios produced this album, and I have no doubt in my mind that we will be working with him for the rest of our musical careers in NH. He knows us, he knows exactly what we want and what we are thinking. Josh has become the sixth member of our band and a great friend that I will cherish for years to come.

If you could open for any band either current or who has ever existed, which band would that be and why?
My two favorite bands are Stick To Your Guns and Green Day. I started listening to Green Day in 6th grade and International Superhits is the reason I started playing guitar. Stick To Your Guns has been my favorite band for the past 5-6 years now, and if I ever got the chance to play with them I have no doubt it would be one of the greatest days of my life.

What could one expect from a live Narrow Hearts show?
A nonstop, energy filled show with a band doing something for a reason.

Any strange or scary stories from the road or from a show that you could share?
We have been very lucky to have never had any vehicle accidents or any personal accidents while on the road (knock on wood). But whenever we play in the northern Wisconsin area, we ALWAYS end up never making it to the show. Whether it be a flat tire, a van problem, or something out of the blue, we are never able to play in northern WI like any normal show. Haha, it is actually hilarious in a stupid way.

Has Narrow Hearts ever played in the Los Angeles / OC area or plan to do so in future days?
We plan on coming to the west coast in Summer of 2013.

Has Narrow Hearts ever played Warped Tour and if so, what was the experience like?
We have played Warped Tour Milwaukee in 2010 under the name of our first band Cain & Abel. It was an unbelievable experience that I will always remember the rest of my life. We shared the stage that day with Eyes Set to Kill and Emarosa, and I remember feeling on top of the world all day long.

If your music was a donut, what kind would it be and why?
Definitely a jelly filled donut. There is always something hidden in the decisions that you make in life that you can’t see right away. Sometimes the hidden filling is good and sometimes it is awful.

What is it you would like a listener to remember the most after hearing your music for the first time?
I would hope that a new listener looks at the heart and soul of our meaning in why we do what we do. If there was no reason for us to spread our message, there would be no point to play in this band.

Any final words of wisdom?
Break free from what you know. Release your mind from the conformity that surrounds you. Make this life yours.

(Interview by Ken Morton)

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