Interview date

January 2007


Yann G


Hello Pete, thanks a lot for accepting this interview for the french metal webzine http://www.auxportesdumetal.com/.
Can you please present us your new release "Human Nature" ?

Human Nature to us represents what we consider to me more of the original Harem Scarem sound.
We have followed our muse many times in our career and it didn't always please our fans.
Since the Moodswings record many people had hoped we would make a record in that style again.
When we changed the name back from Rubber and recorded Weight Of The World I think it was a return to the sound we were more known for.
In my opinion "Human Nature" was recorded more in the spirit of Moodswings but with a modern style production.

How would you compare it to your previous album "Overload" ?

Overload was one of those records that really split our fans.
Some loved it and some didn't because it was quite dark and more "Modern Rock" sounding.
Of course we always want to make our fans happy but we need to be creative and follow different paths as well.

It seems to be very positively reviewed by the rock/metal press. Some reviewers even compare it to "Mood Swings". How do you explain such a comparison?

We are very happy that the record has been getting some great reviews. As I said before, I think "Human Nature" was recorded in a totally different spirit then Overload and is much closer to the original Harem Scarem sound. I think that's why people make the comparisons.

Can you please tell us more about the lyrics you develop in the songs of this new CD ?

The lyrical content of Human Nature ranges from relationship oriented songs such as "Caught Up In Your World" to more positive message songs like "Give Love/Get Love" to songs that explore different sides of the human experience such as "Human Nature" an "21"

How do you manage the recording process inside the band : do you start by writing the lyrics then the music ? Who does what ?

For the most part Harry and I write all the songs.
On "Human Nature" (for the first time) Creighton co-wrote a track. (Don't throw it away).
The songs all develop differently sometimes starting with a lyrical idea and sometimes it stems from a guitar riff or melodic idea.
Usually Harry and I will do some preliminary writing on our own then get together and start putting our ideas together.

In France, Harem Scarem is often presented under the "Hard FM" category what relates usually more to bands like Europe or Bon Jovi. I personally consider that you are a real hard-rock n'roll band, maybe we can put you under "melodic hard-rock". How would you define the Harem Scarem's rock n' roll ?

I suppose I would consider Harem Scarem's sound to be modern melodic rock. It definitely touches on classic melodic rock sound at moments but hopefully we present it with a more modern production.

Who are the main influences of each musician inside the band?

That's a hard question...
We've been a band for 17 or 18 years and our influences/musical tastes have been continually changing over that time.
In the beginning our influences were some great melodic rock bands.
Queen, Def Leppard, TNT, Extreme, Van Halen.

The song "Give Love/Get Love" is undoubtfuly very influenced by Queen, even the guitar solo sounds in the Brian May way. What is the place of Queen inside Harem Scarem's music ?

Harry and I are both huge Queen fans and we a have frequently shown it on other records as well.
Harry wrote GL/GL and we both knew that this should be presented in that way.( homage to one of our favorite bands)
It was begging for a Brian May style guitar solo so I did my best Brian.
I've always loved his playing.

You are a canadian band. Can you please present us which bands/artists are today part of the Canadian hard-rock/metal stage ?

The biggest Canadian rock bands on the scene today are probably 3 days Grace, Billy Talent, Sum 41 and obviously Nickelback.

Do you plan to do a worldwide tour to promote "Human Nature" ? If yes, to Europe ? to Japan ?

We are hoping to do some dates in both Europe and Japan in support of the record.
We will probably tour sometime in the early spring.

Your success really grew thanks to your album "Moody Swings" especially in Japan. How do you explain your success in Japan ?

In 1993 when "Moodswings" came out that style of rock was dying in North America but in Japan that record really seemed to connect.
We don't really know whay but coulden't be happier about it.
If it wasn't for the Japanese fans we may not exist as this band today.

What are your future projects ? Do you plan to record a DVD live during your next tour ?

There are no plans for a live DVD at the moment but we are working on something pretty cool for the fans...more on that later!

To finish this interview, would you have some words for the french readers ?

I'd like to thanks everyone in France that has given our music a chance...thanks very much for the support and we hope to play for you one day!

I really want to thank you for this interview. Congratulation & good luck for "Human Nature" promotion !

You're very welcome and thank you as well.

Pete Lesperance