Exclusive Interview With Bleeding Through

Palmer talks to Bleeding Through about their US tour, upcoming European tour and the future direction of the band.

On September 15th, I was privileged enough to sit down and talk to Ryan Wombacher. For those of you who don’t know who he is, he’s the bassist for a wonderful band known only as Bleeding Through. Ryan and I met up on his tour bus while he was in Springfield, Virginia, and had a chat about a variety of subjects. So go ahead, keep reading, and catch a glimpse into the mind of one of Metalcore’s most prolific bassists.

First, let me say: Congrats on the new album. I reviewed it, and loved it. So – what do you think your next step is? Where do you see Bleeding Through going from here?

Ryan: Every album has been different from the beginning, so… it’s, I mean it’s not drastically different, there’s always been an element of a Black Metal side, a Hardcore/Metalcore side. People always say that our albums are really different, but when you really look at it, they all contain the same kind of elements. We just dip in to different styles more so then others. For instance: the last record we put out, our self-titled, we went a bit more on the Black Metal side. We don’t consider ourselves a Black Metal band in any sense of the word, but it’s ju
st a natural progression, it’s part of growing up. We’ve all been writing music together for so long that it’s easy for us to go any direction we want with it. We never really know where it will end up until we start writing.

Sounds good. How’s the tour been so far this year?

Ryan: This tour kicked off in LA and that was a great show. Since then we’ve been working our way South – it always seems like we hit South, kind of, last. So it’s kind of weird. We feel kind of backwards right now, but it’s been going great!

How’s the East Coast been treating you?

Ryan: We do really well on the East Coast. We like it here a lot.

In October you’re supposed to start touring overseas, starting in the UK. You’ve toured over there a few different times. Would you say you get a different response from your fans overseas then your fans here?

Ryan: Oh yeah. Europe’s a whole different planet, man. There’s some places we do really well and there’s some places that are just – mediocre. I don’t really know how else to say it. We can’t do really well everywhere, but metal and heavy music in general seems to be a lot more accepted in Europe and that’s what it really comes down to. It’s a bit more mainstream over there, and the age demographic is wider.

Where overseas would you say you’ve gotten the best reception and what’s your favorite place to play overseas?

Ryan: Spain is really cool. I’d say that’s probably our best! I love the Netherlands also. Obviously the UK – we do really well there too.

Any plans for South Africa?

Ryan: Not that I know of right now. We’d be down to play there if we garnered enough interest.

So what are your plans once this tour’s over?

Ryan: After this tour, we’ve got two weeks off, then we’re headed to Europe. After the Europe tour is done, we’re probably going to take a break for a while.

How does it feel to finally be away from all the drama with Trustkill Records, and how’s the new label treating you?

Ryan: Leaving Trustkill was probably the best feeling ever. I think we’re still recovering from it, it’s just a blowback of being on that label for so long. It also has to do with not getting what we, you know, earned for ourselves. Switching to Rise Records has been really cool so far and we’re really excited to see what we can do with them from here on out.

What’s been the hardest album you’ve had to work on so far?

Ryan: The hardest? I think… you know, it’s kind of a tie between working with The Truth and Declaration. When we were at home writing The Truth, there were gaps in between the recording process, our producer got sick for a while, and we had to leave on tour. Then going up to Vancouver to do Declaration with Devin Townsend and not getting any of our money from Trustkill to do the record until we came home. Everything was funded by ourselves, friends, and family the entire time. Then finally getting the money when we came home and finally being able to pay everyone back. It was difficult just trying to survive as a band and recording on no money pretty much.

What was it like working with Devin?

Ryan: If we had the chance I know we’d do it again. I’m hoping maybe he might work with us again soon, but he says he’s taking a break for a while. But, working with Zeuss on the last record was awesome! We knew we wanted to work with Devin, he’s a great guy and he’s just… He’s crazy in the right way. He’s kind of like a mad scientist. He stays asleep on the couch in the studio at night because he wakes up or he can’t sleep because he thinks of a really cool part and he’ll go and mix around until seven in the morning. He’s a genius.

Well, for the next album, I know you guys don’t really have any tentative plans for it yet, do you think you’ll continue with the sound you’ve done in Declaration and your most recent self-titled album, or will you be going to go back to the more melodic sounds from The Truth?

Ryan: Personally, I’d like to really try to do something between The Truth and Declaration. Declaration was my favorite record in terms of the sound and the atmosphere, while The Truth was more of a raw record. It was pretty much what we play live – very cut and dry. There’s no bullsh*t on there. Everything that’s on that record we can recreate live. So if we could do something in between those two records, find that perfect balance between the two, that’s what I would really like to do.

Your new guitarist, Dave, seems to be working really well with you guys. How do you feel he’s helped to progress the sound?

Ryan: Oh man, the dude’s an awesome guitar player – that’s all he does! He just plays guitar all day long. He’s definitely brought guitar solos to the table like crazy. When he writes songs they’re a lot more mainstream structured. There’s a definite intro to a verse, chorus, verse, bridge, and finally the ending. Before that some of our songs were kind of, I wouldn’t say chaotic, but they were definitely crazier. I think Dave writes in a little more mainstream direction, but when it’s brought in to the rest of the band it gets skewed a bit and turns into a Bleeding Through song. I think it works to our advantage, keeping each other in check.

Well, Ryan, that’s really about it. Did you have any last input you wanted to get in?

Ryan: Cool. Um, when we do our break after the tour is over we’re not going to be done. We’re not just going to go ‘cold-turkey’. We’ll be writing and getting ready for the future. During that whole break we’ll make sure to keep making new material, and hopefully you guys will have a new record soon.

Thank you for your time, Ryan. We wish you all the best!

- Palmer Sturman

Written by Palmer Sturman

Palmer Sturman currently resides in Richmond, Virginia. He's a fiend for all things distorted, noisy, and covered in tattoos but he's not averse to the softer stuff. He's an uninteresting man doing interesting things and you can follow his antics @sturmsworth.