Society´s Ill is a band which I compare to our Swedish fellows Millencollin. Read more about the group and see what they think about this…February 2015
Each band member looked over the questions and contributed, answers are identified by the first initial of the band member: B:=Brent Over, D=Danarky, M=Skid Marc, N=The Naj 1
Please tell me a little bit history of the group?
-B: D: Society’s Ills formed in 2006 but only really got a bit more serious a few years after that in 2010 when Brent Over joined the band and completed the current line-up. That’s when we began touring and releasing studio albums. Since then, we’ve opened for and played with quite a number of awesome bands and we continue to have fun playing shows, writing new music and partying!
Please tell me a little about every member in the group right now, age, family, work, interests and something bad about everyone? Have you been in any other punkbands before?
-B: D: Naj and I played in a band together back in high school but only played a few shows. I played in another band called Humanifesto for a few years. M: Bad things: for Brent ; He drops ridiculously huge fart bombs at inopportune moments. For Dan he nags like an old lady. For Naj there have been way too many ass crack sightings.... N: mid 30s, tech
You have listened a lot to older stuff like Millencollin and usual USHC ? Am I right? Favorites from the past?
-B: Berurier Noir, DK, Pennywise D: When I got into punk rock in high school I quickly focused exclusively on 80’s hardcore, mainly the DC and California bands. Bands like Minor Threat and Dead Kennedys were major influences. I’ve since branched out to a much broader range of genres, but punk rock and hardcore and anything that has interesting songwriting and played with intensity and a faster tempo will catch my attention. M: minor threat , bad brains. N: Bad Religion, NOFX, Pennywise, Dead Kennedys, Rancid,
Society´s Ills, are you satisfied with the name? How did it came up? Is there any deeper meaning with it? Which is the best bandname you know?
-B: CunninLynguists D: We actually had a song by that name before we settled on using it as a band name. I think the reason it worked for me personally is that it was a ‘serious’ band name that imparted that we weren’t playing joke songs. That style is fine but it’s not something I wanted to do. One issue with the name though is that it can be difficult for French speaking people to pronounce! And if certain typefaces are used people read the name as “Society’s 3’s” as Ill can look like the Roman numeral 3. M: Well, we went through hundreds of options to no avail. Then we realized that our song called Society's ills would be a good name, so there you have it. Dayglo Abortions.
What´s the best thing with playing live?
-B: Energy of the crowd. D: It’s a great opportunity to get a bunch of friends out to have some beers and have some fun! It’s great meeting new bands and new fans and making friends along the way. M: The scent of the mosh pit hitting you. N: the energy on stage and in the crowd
And where is best to play?
-Canada republic? B: D: I enjoy playing Toronto – one memorable show there had a moshpit that only had girls in it! We all grew up in the Ottawa area so playing there is always a good time. Hamilton has been good to us… really we’re happy playing in all kinds of different places, though we’ve only had the opportunity to play the Eastern side of the country as it’s quite a long way out to the West coast! M: N: so far, my fav place is Sept Iles
.How would you describe your music in three words?
-B: Loud, fast , drunk D: Frenetic, Energetic and Fast M: expeditious, classy, affordable. N: Fast Melodic Punk,
What does punk mean to you, is it only a word or is it a lifestyle? B: D. ’Punk’ the word means something different to everyone so my feeling is that you interpret it how you see fit and if it betters your life, then all the better. M: N: it’s a way of thinking
How do you see on downloading, mp3 and that stuff?
-B: D: What music online has offered us is the ability for our music to be heard all across the world, and 20 years ago that wouldn’t have been the case for a band our size. That said I really enjoy holding the physical album in my hands and prefer supporting bands so I still buy music the old fashioned way! M: Like sharing mixed tapes back in the day... N: im a totally fine with it, I think that for bands like us it is still in the plus side for us. Anyone can listen to our music if they wanted to.
How is it to live in Canada now? Politically?
-B: Uneventful. D: Our Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper makes great fodder for a punk band! M: Our prime minister is an idiot. (see secret song on first album) N: under the rein of King Harper
Is there any good bands from Canada now? Is the punkscene big? How is it in your hometown?
-B: Local boys BCASA and the East End Radicals. If you haven't heard of them give em a listen. Good local punk scene and the pouzza fest is a big punk rock fest in Montreal. D: There are many awesome punk bands out of Canada. There are the classics such as DOA, SNFU, NoMeansNo and Propagandhi for example. A fantastic band that I listen to all the time is the Rebel Spell. Also worth checking out are our friends from Montreal the East End Radicals and the BCASA! M: We recently played with a good canadian band called Rebel Spell. N: RoadBones, BCASA and the Brains are straight out of MTL
What do you know about Sweden?
-B: D: Sweden obtained independence from the Kalmar Union on the 6th of June 1523. Ok I didn’t know that I had to look it up! M: I may have Stockholm syndrome. N: I love Sweden and would love to visit like...tomorrow
Have you heard any good bands from Sweden?
-B: The Hives D: We know mainly the bigger names… I’m a fan of the Refused and Raised Fist. M: Refused N: Punk rock wise only Millencollin. But I think ABBA and Ace of Base are from there as well
Your lyrics, who does them and what influences you?
-B: D: I am currently the main lyricist. I am influenced by a wide variety of subject matter, with lyrics consisting of storytelling, societal commentary, and introspective stuff but I always keep in mind that it’s going to be Naj singing these lyrics so they tend to be open to interpretation instead of literal and specific. M: N: Mostly Dan, I wrote a few songs. Yes, in a strange kind of way I feel that Dan knows enough about any of us that when he is writing somewhere inside his brain he speaks for all of us
Is there any subject that you never will write anything about?
-B: D: We don’t write love songs. I guess it’s just a matter of playing what we like to listen to. And as much as I’ve enjoyed some particularly offensive bands’ lyrics such as Dayglo (also from Canada) it’s just not my writing style. M: N: I try not to get too political with my writing, I dont see us as that type of band. I enjoy many political bands but its just not us.
Politic and music, does it goes hand in hand?
-B: Not necessarily, we don't really have overtly political songs except for small c. D: Most of my favourite punk rock bands have had at least some degree of political lyrical content. It’s tricky though in my opinion because the sheer complexity of politics in general can’t easily be boiled down into the neat sound byte format of a song chorus. But when it is done well the results can be inspiring. M: Well you do have to sing about something ...so as long as you’re not being preachy about it it's cool with me. N: Politics and anything goes hand in hand. Shitty to admit but seems like there’s politics in everything.
Best political band/artist?
-B: Immortal Technique D: I’d say it’s an even tie between Propagandhi and the Dead Kennedys simply because they have both been able to have charged political content that avoids clichés and platitudes, makes you reflect and is poetic all at the same time. Not an easy task! M: Bad religion, Propagandhi. Rage Against the Machine. N: Dead Kennedys
Do you think that music(lyrics and so on) can change anyones life, I mean people who listens to music?
-B: D: Absolutely. M: N: 110%
It´s fun when other tough punkbands stands with a beercan on their covers you have nice beerglasses? Howcome you did take this photo with the glasses?
-B: D: Yeah those were fancy beer glasses for sure! We mainly drink beer out of cans (but not Pabst, fuck Pabst! Unless they want to sponsor us?) but that photo was taken at a bar Brent used to DJ at and those are the glasses they provide with pitchers. The bar has since burnt down so any new photos will show cans or regular pint glasses haha. If anyone got the impression that we were fancy they’d quickly see otherwise after hanging out with us for a bit! M: It was the cheapest beer available. N: We happen to be at a bar where they serve beer in glasses. It wasn’t really planned to try to look tough, we really don’t have anything to prove to anyone
Is it important to get out physical records of your stuff? Why or why not?
-B: D: I personally feel a greater sense of accomplishment from releasing a physical record. In the end it's the music that matters but I think a band is taken more seriously when they put in the added effort that comes with putting out physical records. M: Yes, because I don't want to be stuck with hundreds of copies of the same album! N: Absolutely, many people still love to "have" the music.
Please tell me a funny thing which have happened during your career and under some gig?
-B: D: at the very first show that Society's Ills played I ended up dancing with an elderly woman in her eighties with only one or two teeth and she kept trying to make out with me. We tend to drink quite a bit so something funny ends up happening at most shows! :
How does your audience look like? Which people do you miss on your concerts?
-B: Like people who just realized they walked into the wrong show. D: There tend to be a number of different scenes in the punk rock community here in Montreal and elsewhere, and seeing as we draw from influences as broad ranging as hardcore to skate punk to street punk to psychobilly to thrash to punk n roll etc we engage people from these different scenes. You’ll see young and old, you'll see mohawks and shaved heads and long hair all at the same show. M: They look like ugly bags of mostly water.
Please rank your five favoriterecords, five favoriteconcerts and five most important things in life?
-B: D: That's difficult! I'll give you one instance that stands out to me in each of those categories: The record that meant and means the most to me is the Minor Threat complete discography. It was the third punk album I ever got my hands on in high school and I listened to that dubbed tape more than any other album since. It is just so well written with such intensity and passion. The concert that stands out the most to me was the Trigger Effect final show commemorating their singer Nick. The show itself was amazing and the event itself had such a special feeling that I don't think I'll ever see matched. Nick was an important part of the Montreal music scene and friend to so many. That ties into the last category of most important thing in life: it's the relationships we share with friends, family, acquaintances and strangers. We're all here to enjoy life and how we interact with one another has the greatest impact on our own quality of life. That is a recurring lyrical theme in my writing. M: N: Punk In Drublic, Suffer, Appetite for Destruction, Rancid at Porter Hall, NOFX at Foufs, first Nekromantix show with Andy before he died, Deathboat,
Is it boring with interviews? Is it much interviews??
-B: D: We don't do too many so we have fun with it still. I like the questions you have asked! Feel free to let us know of other European publications who might be interested in hearing from us! M: N:
If you could choose five bands from the past and the history and nowadays and both dead and living bands to have a concert together with your band. Which five have you been chosen?
-B: Mr bungle, DK, Queens of the Stone Age, Rage Against the Machine, Led Zeppelin. D: There are just way too many historically important and legendary bands punk rock and otherwise that I couldn't settle on five, so I'll pick five relatively smaller active bands: Night Birds, White Lung, Cigarette Crossfire (from your side of the Atlantic), and the Rebel Spell (again!). M: Fredie Mercury. AC DC, CCR, Rage Against the Machine, Danzig. N: Bad Religion, Original Guns N Roses eventho it’s not exactly punk rock its Guns N Freggin Roses! Minor Threat, Dead Kennedys with Jello,
You sound a little bit angry sometimes, are you that? Is punk a good way to get out frustration?
-B: D: Punk rock is definitely a great outlet. M: N: I would say more affirmative then angry but ya i guess. There are things to be angry about, it’s normal and healthy.
Futureplans for the band?
-B: D: We're working on new material. I'm very excited about the sound of these new songs and I can't wait for the world to hear them! Also we have some plans in the works to allow us to do some more touring. I'd love to have our music exposed to a wider audience. M: N: More albums, more tours, more surprises.
-B: D: I want to keep challenging myself in all aspects of life, upping my game in songwriting and live performances. M: N: Keep having some fun
-B: D: We're here for a good time not a long time! I stole that but I don't know from whom. M: A person who falls asleep with an itchy bum, awakes with a stinky finger.
Something to add?
-B: D: Sweden rocks!