Last Updated on March 5, 2023
Originally published in Beat Motel issue 8
I bloody loved the last album Crime In Stereo put out, it came about at a time when I was getting totally numb to the hundreds of ‘hardcore’ albums I had been sent to review, I was never particularly fond of the genre anyway. Their last album ‘The Troubled Stateside’ turned me onto a new breed of intelligent fast bands, so imagine how chuffed I was when ‘Crime In Stereo is Dead’ plopped through my door. I was a little concerned about the album title (look what happened to The Refused!) so I hooked up to clear a few things up…
First up, the lame question, please introduce yourself and your band. Also, let us know if any bandmates have superhuman powers.
Kristian Hallbert I have one testicle, and i sing for Crime In Stereo. And Scottie can lift a car.
It sounds like you’ve had a rough ride in the run-up to this album, can you tell us briefly about what’s been happening?
We have put this band before anything else in our lives for the past 6 years. In those six years we have had some great times and of course really bad times. Like any other touring band, you constantly question whether this is what you should be doing, at 25 years old. The answer even though extremely frustrating always seems to be yes.
What was the driving force to carrying on?
The experience. To be able to see things that my parents never get to see. So many times when we are on tour I sit back and think, about how lucky we are to do what we do.
We’re always hearing positive things from Nitro bands, what prompted the move to Bridge 9?
Sean, our A&R dude, is a great guy he worked really hard but unfortunately Nitro wasn’t the right fit for us. They didn’t really understand us as a band and what we were about and I feel towards the end it really started to show. Our views on who should be doing what were very different. And Dexter Holland was too busy brewing hot sauce and flying jets.
How are you finding Bridge 9 so far?
Being on Bridge 9 we get to work with friends. People we have known for years and completely trust. They genuinely want to see this band succeed and it’s a good feeling to have people like that behind you. They are working their asses off making sure that everyone knows that IS DEAD exists and we as artists appreciate that so much.
The sound in the new album is blown wide open in terms of genre and styles, was there anything you were itching to include on the last album that had to wait till this album?
No, Alex used some riffs from that writting period but in completely different contexts than when they were written for Stateside. We have always been a band of guys that are in a band because they love music. This record really makes me feel like a musician and there is a big difference.
Do you think your progression from hardcore to punch-pop will continue much like it did with The Replacements and in five years you’ll release a multi-million-selling album, and all buy drug habits?
Um no personally I don’t think that will happen. And if it did, we certainly won’t be buying drug habits. Well, maybe coke and hookers but that’s it. It ends there and personalized M&M’s in our dressing room.
What would you see as the logical musical progression from the current album?
Who knows, we always surprise ourselves with what we wind up with at the end. So we are just as curious as you.
How are you finding the balance between normal life (your teaching jobs and whatnot) and the punk rock life?
Having to wake up before noon and not sleeping in a smelly van. We have always balanced our touring music life with our jobs back home (although it is extremely hard to find a job that allows you to never be there).
For a while, our focus was solely on this band. Sometimes you need to take a step back from that and look at your life as a whole and figure out what the hell you’re going to do with your life.
We will tour in support of this record. As for the future who knows? Crime In Stereo IS DEAD but will always be reborn.
Me going to sleep because it’s 2 AM and I have work in 5 hours…….SHITTTTTTTTT
Anything to add?
Listen to Blacklisted, Life Long Tragedy, The Draft, The Agent, Shipwreck AD, Ambitions and the Black Keys