Shadows Fall’s Brian Fair on Being Recognized in Public: ‘My Dreads Give Me Away’
Shadows Fall recently released Fire From the Sky, their seventh studio album and first for the folks at Razor & Tie. The record landed in the top 40 of the Billboard 200 upon its May 15 release and the band has been out on the road ever since, touring with Fear Factory and just this past weekend, dominating the Pepsi Max Stage at the Download Festival in the U.K.
"We have seven albums out now, so it's getting tougher to get a set list going that makes everyone happy," Shadows Fall singer Brian Fair told Noisecreep during a recent chat. "So far, in terms of the new stuff, the song "Divide and Conquer" has been going over really well. It's a shorter, in-your-face kind of tune that is a bit easier to grasp right off the bat. The title track, "Fire From the Sky," is also been killing live. That one's a slower tempo and a lot of people knew it since it was the first thing we released online before the album came out. I think it brings back some of our death metal roots."
Forming in 1995, Shadows Fall are obviously road veterans at this point, playing their infectious brand of thrash across this filthy planet on countless tours. It's not surprising that the stuff some of us might find trivial the band truly relishes: "It's Friday night and we don't have a show tonight, so you would think that we're a metal band and we're going to go out and go crazy. But that's definitely not happening [laughs].
"We're just in complete lazy, chill mode. Our big Friday night will probably be cruising over to Applebee's for dinner. I think a lot of our fans would be let down by that," chuckled Fair. Noisecreep asked the singer if the band has ever been approached by a fan at the famed chain restaurant: "It's definitely happened in the past when we've been out at those kinds of places. My dreads give me away. It's definitely funny when it does happen and really random."
Watch Shadows Fall's "The Unknown" Video
Since we were on the subject of downtime on tour, Noisecreep asked Fair if he and the Shadows Fall dudes ever hit record stores to make sure their albums are in stock: "Oh, totally! We definitely do it during release week and buy the album too. Whenever you're doing an in-store, you look around to see how many copies they have on hand and all of that. We'll also randomly hit stores and see if they have our latest record in there and if they don't, we'll shoot an email off to our label complaining about it [laughs].
"But the true sign of "making it," for me, was when Shadows Fall got its own flap in the CD section. That was a huge moment for me [laughs]. Sadly, those days are coming to an end with all of these stores closing. When you walk into a Best Buy now, it just looks like the CD section keeps shrinking and shrinking. Now that the music business is reorganizing itself, we'll see what happens to the actual physical product. I'm still into holding an actual album in my hands. In the last year or so, my wife got me a record player that rips vinyl into MP3s, so I've been rocking vinyl a lot. I'm really back in the dark ages [laughs]. We'll see what ends up happening with CDs once the music business stuff gets sorted out."