5 de fevereiro de 2012

Quick Chat with Bryan Fontez, Last Bullet’s lead singer

Last Bullet (Photo by Joe Voci - http://www.josephvoci.com/)

Today I want to talk about a new band called Last Bullet. In the last years, only a few bands caught my eye the way Last Bullet did. Usually, I’d rather listen to old material and old bands or new material of old bands, but this band is helping me to change my mind.

Formed in Toronto, Canada, in 2009, by Brenden Anthony (lead guitar), Michael Silva (rhythm guitar), Leo D (Drums), Will Shannon (Bass) and Bryan Føntez (Vocals), Last Bullet has been influenced by several "big bands", such as Gun'n'Roses, AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, Motley Crue, Soundgarden, Metallica, Bon Jovi, etc. However, they define themselves as "the complete extreme of every single attribute that makes Rock N' Roll what it is".

And you will agree with it if you listen to their first studio album, called Last Bullet EP, available for download and buy at http://www.lastbulletmusic.com/. You will see that Rock'n'Roll is alive and kicking, but now with the addition of the breath of fresh air Last Bullet has to offer.

Let’s find out a little more about the band with lead singer Bryan Fontes.

PDRR: How and when the band started? Please tell me a little bit of your history. How did you meet the other band members?

Bryan: In Fall of 2009 the band had already been formed instrumentally for about a year, Brendan, Mike and Leo had been jamming and writing a few songs. They put an ad on the internet for a bassist, Will Shannon auditioned and he got the job on the first shot. Then came the long and painful search for a lead singer. The guys had been auditioning singers for nine months or so with no luck. I had been playing drums for a Black Sabbath Tribute Group at the time. But I was getting sick of playing the same music over and over, and I had a passion inside to pursue music as a career and always wanted to be the lead singer of a band. I looked around while I was rehearsing with the Sabbath band and saw a flyer titled "Last Bullet looking for singer" and decided to take a number. I made the call, setup an audition, showed up and sang my own lyrics and melody for the song "Can’t Move On" and the rest is history.

PDRR: Who wrote the songs/lyrics of the Last Bullet first EP?

Bryan: We all write the music collectively for the most part. But most of the songs on the first EP were written before I joined the band. I wrote the lyrics for "Can't Move On", but the rest of the lyrics were written by Michael Silva, I just had to put my own style on them and make the melody my own in order to finish everything.

When I joined the band it just took some time to tweak, edit and polish everything in order for me to fit my vocals comfortably into each song and make them ready to play live and record in the studio.

PDRR: Do you have more songs ready to record?

Bryan: We have about 26 songs that we've written since we've been together. Many of them are finished and some are waiting to be finished when we get the time.

But as far as recording goes, we've recently been writing some of our best music ever and we definitely have 5-6 new songs that are done and ready to be recorded. Two of which we've been playing live at our shows and have been received EXTREMELY well. The other 3-4 you won't hear until we release the album. But trust me when I say that it will be worth the wait.

PDRR: Where do you find your inspiration to create?

Bryan: We find inspiration from anything... Relationships, vacations, friends, nature, partying, friends, good times, bad times, stress, happiness. A big inspiration for me is watching other bands. When I hear a really good song or see a really good performance, I get inspired to go home immediately and write my own music that is just as good or better than what I just experienced. When we first started writing, we usually began with a Guitar part/riff and expanded from there, but we no longer follow any set of particular rules, because when it comes to writing music there really are no rules.

Now we sometimes start with Vocals, drums or even bass, until we start to hear the vibe of the song, and then we expand on the idea with the left over instruments until we have a full song with 4-5 parts.

PDRR: In Last Bullet’s bio it is said that we may find a lot of influences, but you are unique at the same time. I was listening to your EP and I have to agree. I would say it’s kind of a new spice to good old Rock'n'roll. Can you tell me more about your style?

Bryan: Definitely, we have many influences in our music and they are very obvious... Gun's N' Roses, Motley Crue, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin, etc. But because everything has been done before, we try our very best to make it fresh, new and more modern. Our goal is to always write and perform REAL Rock N' Roll, but keep it, edgy, crazy, fresh, catchy and modern enough to interest anyone willing to listen. We love that old classic Rock N' Roll sound, but we don't want to redo everything that's been done. So we put our own spin or flavor on it. And then we just sit back and hope that it's something everyone will appreciate and enjoy.

PDRR: In what sense do you think music scenery is different for a new band nowadays? I mean in terms of getting a record deal, promoting your music through Internet etc. How do you see it?

Bryan: Many people have told me that it's much harder to be successful now than it was 20 or even 10 years ago. But I can't really compare because I can only judge from my own experiences. And right now, it's interesting, because there are a lot more tools to use and it's a lot easier to get your music and name out to the entire world because of the internet. However that's also a bad thing because there are so many good bands out there doing the exact same thing that you are. There's a lot of competition, all over the internet.

With that said, the longer we push this band and pursue music as a career, the more we realize that talent and skill is not going to make you successful on its own. The most successful bands in today's industry, are the ones who work the hardest. Go out, make contacts/friends, network, research, promote, advertise... You can't just be a "band" any more. The time when you could just play music and be successful is over. Right now you have to run your band like a business. You have to be strategic, intelligent, professional, efficient and profitable in order to impress anyone and in order to really succeed. No one is going to hand you anything these days, you have to go out and MAKE things happen.

PDRR: What are your plans for this year? New record? Gigs?

Bryan: Well we're currently in the middle of a small tour we're calling the "Toronto Takeover". We're playing shows all over Toronto for the next few months, with the goal of making sure that everyone in Toronto knows who we are by the end of March. We just opened for legendary guitar god and former lead guitarist of "The Scorpions" Uli Jon Roth. We're also opening for "Faster Pussycat" on March 12th here in Toronto, which should be crazy!

Then we're planning to record our next EP in April and release it sometime in the summer. We're also in the early stages of planning a 1-2 month tour here in Canada later on in the year so we can spread our music outside of Toronto and get our new EP out to as many people as possible.

PDRR: And what are your plans/expectations to the near future?

Bryan: Our expectations are to get bigger and better every single year. Every year we've accomplished more than the last, we played bigger shows, gotten better opportunities, made more contacts, met more important people. And the best part is... We're speeding up and not slowing down. We all have a really good feeling that success could be just around the corner if we just keep pushing and working as hard as we are now or harder.

I see no reason why we wouldn't be touring the world with a huge band sometime next year. Our time is coming. And if you refuse to fail... Success is inevitable.

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