Toothgrinder just finished up a successful tour with Killswitch Engage. Although a relatively new band to most, the group have a small handful of previous EPs. On their latest full-length for Spinefarm records, Nocturnal Masquerade, the band explores myriad genres and show their influences without sounding dated nor derivative. Unlike the metal diaspora which, at times, seems postured and poised for an exclusive audience, this 12-song platter will surely land on some Top 10 year-end lists without much ado. Metal Insider caught up with drummer Wills Weller to get the skinny on their recent tour and, of course, their daily grind (pun intended).
What are your plans for Toothgrinder after this tour with Killswitch Engage ends?
For now it looks like we’re headed home to do a little writing before our next tour in August with Periphery, Sikth, and Chon.
Have you been selling merchandise and gaining new fan from this tour?
Every day on tour I feel like we get multiple people coming up saying it was the first time they have heard of us and they loved it. The Killswitch tour has helped so much and we couldn’t be more thankful to be a part of it.
Nocturnal Masquerade was released in January 2016. Have you already begun work on the next for Spinefarm Records?
Absolutely! I feel like once you start going you really should never stop creating music. That’s especially the case with all the tours we’ve been on with awesome bands. I’ve been so inspired by other musicians and the way they write and perform on stage. It only helps better prepare myself for when I create something.
Can fans expect a 2-year wait for a new record like the space between Schizophrenic Jubilee’
You know I’m not sure we’re just going to take it as it comes. When we’re home were always writing and thinking about the next step for the band. But if some awesome tours come up we will definitely be stretching our legs and going for it.
Let’s talk about the band’s members. What are their best characteristics onstage and off? Worst?
We’re all close friends so we know exactly what we like and what makes us crazy. I really respect all the passion everyone in the band has to drive across the country all the time and play shows everyday regardless of the lack of sleep or food. All that goes out the window the moment we step on stage. I don’t think there’s a bad characteristic for anyone. We all have bad days and everyone gets bummed out, but we’re all in it together and we always help each other out when that stuff happens.
You’re three albums in. Anything you would have done differently to get where you’re at?
I’m really happy at our progress thus far. I don’t think I would change anything. I just want to keep my eyes forward and just keep working to be the best we can possibly be.
Do you ever pinch yourself knowing you’ve toured the U.S. and are signed to Spinefarm?
All day and every single day. It’s a dream come true to have the opportunity to do something like this! I feel so lucky that I get to be on the road and play shows with some amazing bands every day and then when I get home concentrate on writing more music with my friends. Plus music is the only thing that really makes sense to me, so I’m glad I get to do it. Ha!
The video for “Blue” is awesome. Where did concept for visuals come from and who made it?
Yeah, I really enjoy watching the “Blue” video. We just wanted to do something a little different than we’ve done before. The concept just came out of going back-and-forth with the band and our friends at Slate Media Group (Long Island, NY). They had the idea for the spinning camera contraption and I think that really made the video stand out.
Living in New Jersey is expensive. Do you guys just drive through all the toll roads and cover your tour vehicle’s license plate?
Ha! I wish. It is super expensive. We should all just ride bikes and skateboards around!