Solvent of Society is your answer to all your grungy punk needs. With Jaden Johnson (lead guitar, backing vocals) adding his classic alternative roots to the mix and Jake Sunstrum (rhythm guitar, lead vocals) bringing his poppy yet melodic lyrics, they make the perfect duo of edge and even more edge. But don’t let them take the show away, Bryce Gillis (drums, backing vocals) brings the fast-paced drumming to the mix and has even participated in vocals from time to time with their take on “Bulls on Parade” by Rage Against Machine. The groove of the band? It takes form in Shaun V., (bass) Solvent’s latest from a long line of kickass bass players. I had the pleasure of sitting down with Bryce when he came to see D.O.A. at The Cambie (Nanaimo) to ask what they have been up to.
C: I’ve heard that you have been in the studio recording an album, what can you tell us about it?
B: It is taking longer than the band has wanted it to, but we hope it turns out well. We have had some bumps in the road finding a committed bass player, but Jake has been tracking the rest of the bass lines.
C: It’s obvious that every musician has an idol, someone that inspired them to start playing. Who would you say is yours?
B: Personally, as a drummer, Travis Barker (Blink 182) and Erik “Smelly” Sandin (NOFX) are the two really big ones that stick out for me. Travis Barker has a lot of style and finesse that stands out, while Erik Sandin has a nice pedal technique. When you boil it down, he has quick feet and I like to think that I have quick feet.
C: Is there a main songwriter for the group or is it a collaborated effort?
B: Jake is the main songwriter of the group. He writes the lyrics, but he’ll usually have a riff that we can branch off from. But other than that, we each write our own parts, Shaun our new bass player. He did really well at learning the bass lines for our show up in Ucluelet, so big thanks to him.
C: S.O.S has recently been participating in UVIC’s Battle of the Bands at Felicitas Campus Pub, what can you tell us about the experience?
B: We made it through the first and second round to the third, but we did not make it to the semifinals. We were disappointed, but we tried our best. The bands that played that night were Echo Radio and Iron Skies, both were excellent bands. Felicitas is great, we love playing there and do hope to play there again.
C: On the topic of S.O.S gigs, any in the future we should look forward to?
B: The next one that we have planned is at Lucky Bar (Victoria) on May 18th, but not a lot of people actually know about it. Other than that, I think we are supposed to have a show at the Duncan Showroom with Vying for Glory and Wise Youngblood. It might get pushed back, but I’m excited to see and play with both of them.
C: What kind of drum equipment do you use?
B: I use a Pearl Forum Series kit. It’s pretty nice, but I need to put new Evans skins on it. I saved up for Joey Jordison Slipknot cymbals, they have a really nice tone that I like.
C: Any last words?
B: I enjoy punk rock music, I am extremely tired since I just saw D.O.A. I really want to go to sleep soon. Thank you a lot Crank it 2 11.
*It should be noted that Bryce was indeed very tired, it was past midnight when I interviewed him. I’d like to thank Bryce for the interview, follow Solvent of Society and check out their music!