LOMM: Can you give a little biographical and historical info; who is involved in the band, and how did you guys meet up?
Tim Graham (Vocals): Basically this whole thing started at the end of another band DJ (Sundine Guitar) and I were in. We both just started writing music and began working with producer Tyler Ruehl building the foundation of our sound and figuring out what we wanted to do as far as being a band. We sought out Brian Robertson on drums and Henry Navarre on bass who we’ve known within our scene in Denver and made Rozu what it is today.
LOMM: Pandemic has taken an emotional toll on everyone yet the arts have been hit especially hard. The musicians are vulnerable to financial upheaval. How have you guys have been holding up?
Tim Graham: To be very honest this year really sucked and had everything we love just to be taken away for a literal year now, it just sucks. Seeing all of our peers and friends struggling is hard and we cannot wait for this all to be over and go back to normalcy. Personally we just took the extra time away from stages and tried to write as many songs as we possibly could.
LOMM: On the other hand you seem to have had a productive time. Is that right?
Tim Graham: We’ve been as productive as our mental state has allowed us. It’s been weird in the quarantine times, one week we would be so productive and keep the drive and motivation going then the next month would just be shot (laughs). It has given us an open door to finalize our debut album which we got to go back dissect and create what we think are the best representations of what Rozu is.
LOMM: Tell us about your genre, what does it means to you, why did you choose this genre?
Tim Graham: The metalcore and post hardcore genres are just near and dear to our hearts. We all got into the scene when it had the big mainstream boom 10 years ago with the beginning of bands such as Underoath, The Used, Everytime I Die, and Silverstein. Personally for me I just love the absolute passion and energy you receive from not just the music but the live performance settings as well.
LOMM: How did the initial musical and thematic elements evolve?
Tim Graham: Bringing in Tyler as our producer was a big portion of the evolution of the band, like any great producer he helped us get out of our own way with his outside unbiased opinions and helped us hone in our sound. I think once the workflow is established and we just keep working obviously the sound will evolve.
LOMM: Are you happy with your product? What aspects of it do you think you guys nailed, and what parts do you think you could improve upon?
Tim Graham: Absolutely happy with what we are doing! This is the most fulfilling band we have been in and we can’t wait to continue growing. I think we nail it in a way to where every song has a slightly different feel or style but still has a sound that is undeniable to being us. On the other end as a creative we can always improve upon ourselves and our craft.
LOMM: How has the overall reception been?
Tim Graham: So far our reception has been amazing from both fans and musical peers which is extremely exciting, makes us feel like we are on to something and we are truly grateful for everything.
LOMM: Have you ever been on a tour? Given live performances? Is it tough for you not to be able to do so now?
Tim Graham: We did a few small runs of tours in 2019 and were so excited to get the wheels really turning in 2020. We had pretty much had the whole summer and fall booked then the world ended and that truly was devastating. Hopefully we can continue with the momentum we were building upon when tours begin happening again.
LOMM: What is the next step for you? How is the future looking?
Tim Graham: Finishing this album along with a few more singles to keep us releasing content until we can be back on the road again. The future is looking good due to the amount of content we have just ready to go.
LOMM: Could you tell us about the lyrics / themes /concepts you focus on or plan to focus on? How did the ideas come about, and how do they influence the writing process? Who is writing the lyrics?
Tim Graham: Theme and concepts are just being mad about being sad (laughs). Like we write these super aggressive songs sonically and the lyrical topics are just really depressive in a way. I have always just written lines or complete songs lyrically in journals or on my phone notes and kind of get the vibe from the instrumental and see if past lyrics work or mostly the song just puts me in a mood and write the lyrics during the sessions. I try my hardest to talk about these feelings I have while including a little hope that things will get better and there is an actual light at the end of the tunnel, pretty much my writing is therapy to myself and convincing myself that things will get better.
LOMM: What bands do you draw your inspiration from?
Tim Graham: I’d say the big 4 we draw a lot of influence from is Underoath, Fit For a King, The Plot in You, and Wage Wat.
LOMM: Which is more exciting? Being on the road or studio?
Tim Graham: For me personally I love the road so much more than the studio. In the studio I am always an absolute wreck of a human emotionally and always feel like I shave 2 years off of my life with the amount of stress I put on myself. Touring is the grueling reward we get for those emotionally draining recording sessions.
LOMM: What first got you into music?
Tim Graham: My dad was a big rock guy and gave me my love for the art. Being an artist came from starting as a tour manager for bands and evolved my talents and networks to start actually being a front man in bands.
LOMM: What do you like the best about being a musician? And what is it that you do not like much?
Tim Graham: I like the fact that it helps me get shit off of my chest. For me personally I don’t need this band to be the biggest band in the world and I do this because I want to and express feelings that sometimes are really hard to talk about. I dislike this new culture of a world we live in where people are so quick to completely rip artists down as people just because they didn’t connect with the song or have their extremely negative opinions while never creating a single piece of art in their own lives.
LOMM: If you weren’t musicians, what would you be doing?
Tim Graham: I’d like to think I would still be involved in this industry somehow on the business side or in some sort of sales role.
LOMM: If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Tim Graham: I think we all learned from this past year and pandemic that the royalty structure and overall financial security for artists needs a makeover. Look at all the ‘”Big” bands in our scene and how everyone is struggling financially with shows and tours not happening. Music is the most consumed form of art and yet the majority of artists struggle to pay their bills from art alone and that truly needs to change.
LOMM: What’s more important to you? Catering to the audience or music for its own sake?
Tim Graham: In a band you have to be cognitive of both realms. Artists should be true to themselves and write music that is genuine to them but on the business side of things you have to know your audience and what content has a better shot of “success” within that demographic.
LOMM: What is the most memorable gig that you have played to date?
Tim Graham: I think selling out our first show with this band was a super memorable night. I’ve been very fortunate to play with some big names and be on some really cool tours but having so much love for something so brand new was a truly amazing feeling.
LOMM: When you look back your music career, what do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Tim Graham: I wouldn’t necessarily say accomplishment but I think I’ll enjoy the connections made the most. Every new fan experience to the friendships made with people you think you’d never meet is such a cool thing to me. Most people will never meet their heroes and it is a really cool feeling to have met a few of mine and becoming actual friends with those people really puts a lot in to perspective.
LOMM: Who would you like to collaborate with?
Tim Graham: Spencer Chamberlin and Aaron Gillespie of Underaoth would be the absolute GOAT of a collaboration.
LOMM: Who would you like to go on a tour with?
Tim Graham: I think an Oceans Ate Alaska Oh, Sleeper and Thousand Below tour would be the best time ever since we have friends in those bands. It would be a BroTour for sure.
LOMM: If you could play any festival in the world, which one would you choose? Tell us why.
Tim Graham: The Impericon Festival is supposed to be one of the wildest festivals for our genre and that would be an amazing opportunity. Really now that the Warped Tour is gone any Euro festival is the goal.
LOMM: What does your collection look like? Mostly Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs, Digital? A bit of everything? A total mess?
Tim Graham: I have a little bit of everything to be honest. My first physical copy of any music I owned was a cassette and kept buying into the evolution of music platforms.
LOMM: What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
Tim Graham: We are from Denver Colorado in the USA. The metal scene is always on and off, like a couple years it will be booming and having so much talent and excitement, then it will die down for a year or two and repeat.
LOMM: You can invite 5 people to a dinner party, from the future, the past, rock stars, a movie characters, you name it. Who are you having dinner with?
Tim Graham: Oh man, I’d invite Spencer Chamberlin, Justin Bieber, Keanu Reeves, Dave Grohl, and Jared Leto, just all my favorites in one place (laughs).
LOMM: What is your weirdest memory in your music career?
Tim Graham: It wasn’t truly weird but there was this like 4-month span where we just kept running into Upon this Dawning in different random cities with an old band I was in. We all became bros, saw each other a lot across the US then never saw them again.
LOMM: What is the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Tim Graham: Anytime a random kid has a dildo at a show is always weird to me. I don’t know why there is this huge passion of dildos within this scene but it is fascinating in a certain way.
LOMM: If you had one message to your fans, what would it be?
Tim Graham: Thank you all so much for sticking with us and we cannot wait to see all your faces on the road again when the world safety permits it.
LOMM: Anything else you think your fans should know?
Tim Graham: If y’all missed it we just dropped a new single titled ‘Rue’ so check that out because personally for me it is my favorite song!
LOMM: Thank you for taking the time!