The Victorian metalcore visionaries vocalist Robbie and guitarist Jayden from Visioner recently had a chat with Jess from Moody Music about their latest track Psyche that got unleashed about 2 weeks ago. Just a warning if you scare easy, these lads talked all things Psyche including what it was like filming their music video in an abandoned insane asylum with a bunch of creepy dolls and some spirit tech inference issues (the spirit’s probably just wanted to listen to triple j’s short.fast.loud over the PA system)
GENRE: Metalcore| FFO: Parkway Drive, Thornnhill, Bloom
The new single is called Psyche, and the musical/ instrumental part of the song, the skeleton of the song, was created before the lyrics. Now, Robbie you’ve just recently joined Visioner in 2021, were the other Visioner boys like “here's a track we prepared earlier... Robbie can you just slap some lyrics onto it?” and did that become Robbie’s audition?
Jayden: Yeah, that's pretty much how it went. We recorded the song and demo-ed it out, and then yeah, we lost our past vocalist and then ended up finding Robbie, and he was down to do it and he slapped some lyrics together for us.
Was that the test to join the band. To write a good song?
Jayden: Yep, pretty much!
Robbie: I had done a couple of shows and stuff to fill in before with them, just because there was some shows that Dan couldn't make it to so I ended up doing some filling in here and there, so that probably could have been considered as a trail as well.
Yeah, they must have liked you, and they wanted to keep you around.
I wanted to take a look into the lyrics behind Psyche, and Robbie you’ve said previously that the lyrics were prompted by your experiences of a drug induced state of insanity and paranoia. Could you please expand on the meaning behind the song?
Robbie: Yeah, so pretty much I was a young, dumb kid, and did a lot of stupid things, and for a long time and that kind of instilled some bad paranoid schizophrenia sort of in a way, to me, and I dpn’t know for a long time I was like struggling with a lot of demons and I thought self hatred. Thoughts that my friends like didn't want me around and all that sort of thing and you know it was my friends and all that they kind of like pulled me out of that too in the end and really showed me that that really was all just in my head and pretty hard to time for me to be honest.
What would be the one message, you would want fans or anyone else who hears the song Psyche, to get out of it?
Robbie: Probably more so the fact of like, no matter what deepshit you put yourself into there is always a way out, there is always your loved ones. You know the people close to you, whether it be friends or family, you know, they're there to help you and they love you and, Yeah, they're just there to be your solid rock and help you pull you out of a shit time no matter what, whether that be, you know you've indulged in drugs or you've got yourself into trouble, or even just like life is then hard and rough and getting you down, loved ones are always there to try and help you out on the other side. Don't let all those bad demons in your head, or the negative thoughts and shit weigh you down, just rely on your friends and help and pull you out of a shitty place.
I wanted to go into the music video... because it is TERRIFYING! It's like a NIGHTMARE! That you can watch over and over again, because it's on YouTube.
Robbie: Yeah, that was kind of the whole thought of, really [laughs] with it being real dark. We kind of decided to make that music video fit the same theme of the song and whatnot. So that's why we've got the creepy dude and stuff in it who is supposed to kind of represent that work, paranoia, voice in your head is supposed to be that entity that is just leering over your shoulder, telling you all the negative thoughts and whatnot. And all that craziness.
It's like when you're sleeping and you've got your feet out of the bed and you just like feel something brush against you, it's like, Oh *slight panic*
Where did the idea for the music video come from to have this creepy figure, and you guys look a bit like distressed and messy as well?
Robbie: I guess it just came from the theme of the song. We kind of realized that like, we need to do something that obviously fits the lyrical content, and really drives home what we're trying to talk about and stuff and I guess that's where all like the thought of it came from, really, just to really draw it out, you know, the real seriousness of this song and how it’s kind of like a bad sort of mental state.
Yeah, I definitely think that comes across really well in the way that the music video has been put together. What was it like filming on the day?
Robbie: It was across one day. It was pretty fun. It was a lot of work and very tiring especially saying, you know, we'd all been stuck inside from COVID and whatnot. I was highly unfit, so I was mainly coughing up a lung, as probably with the rest of this and it was just a creepy setting to do it in, we did it up at the Mayday Hills Mental Asylum filing in Beechworth (the abandoned one). We were lucky enough to get that place to do it and Jesus it was not a fun place to film in that’s for sure.
Was it scary filming at an abandoned mental Asylum?
Robbie: We had some weird things happen, and some very strange things happen.
Did you get to walk around it?
Yeah we actually did get taken on little tour on through come parts, we obviously had to like scout through the asylum to see like what was going to be the best place to film and stuff. And so we kind of got to go on a tour I know Jayden and the boys went up on an actual scouting day that I wasn't able to go through and they probably saw a bit more of the asylum than what I did.
But yeah, there's some creepy corridors and they put like weird dolls and stuff in rooms that you don't expect you around come around a doorway and there’s a doll just sitting there staring at you. So they definitely kind of try to overcomplicate the scareness place shit that’s not there. But yeah, there's also a lot of wacky, unusual things that happen inside there too that doesn't seem quite normal.
What were some of the creepy things that happened on the day?
Robbie: I remember when we were setting up inside of this old laundry in the women's Ward, and Jake’s got a boombox in there just playing music while we're setting up and then it just cuts off all of a sudden we're like what the hell?! Then Jake walks one step outside the door with it, and it turns back on when he goes to walk back inside the door, it turns off again, and just like weird stuff like that, and like of audio does lead bugging out on us and stuff when we're trying to like film it and play the music through the PA speaker for the dude's filming.
Jayden: When we're doing the scouting as well, we were walking down these stairs and one of the doors started shaking. We were all just looking at eachother having a laugh like what was that? The tour guide said it was just the wind, but there was no wind down there.
Oh how creepy?!
Jayden: The tour guides said that a lot of cameras cut out and die very quickly around the place and yeah, there's been some photos taken, and something in the background like a shadow figure.
Besides getting sidetracked by ghosts and creepy things. You guys had just played a show with Bloom and Thornhill up in Albury, was that the first gig back together as a full band?
Jayden: Yeah, it was Robbie's first official show in Visioner. I think it was about 14 months roughly since we had played a show. It just felt good to be back up on stage. Seeing everyone screaming the lyrics back at us.
Robbie: Definitely had to get out those first show jitters, but we are keen to move forward and keep getting shows and playing live music again, it feels real good.
How was your show? What did you guys miss the most about not being up on stage (from COVID)?
Robbie: Honestly, just like the crowd involvement, the energy in the room like that feeling of playing a live show. Like heavy music brings us together, there's nothing even closely like it, that’s why we do what we do and we love what we do.
Yeah, I find that heavy metal people they're the nicest people, despite like screaming their guts out and mosh pitting, and all of that [laughs]
Robbie: You wouldn't expect it, but some of the most beautiful people listen to heavy metal.
What other bands and artists inspire Visioner?
Jayden: I guess I started writing music when I first said Parkway Drive back in 2006, and I’ve always loved Parkway Drive, and really love their work ethic as well, they've always been a full on touring band and a big inspiration. Northlane too , they are one of my favourite bands. They're all the best.
Robbie: You could probably even say that we even grab influence from bands probably like, even Thornhill themselves and Wage War from America. They are all the little facets of the world that we kind of get influences from. I know that me vocally, I get a lot of influence from We Came As Romans, Dave Stephens from them, their vocals is a lot of what I kind of try to strive towards as well as like Caleb Shomo back in the Attack Attack! days sort of stuff. There's a lot of little places that we kind of pull a lot of influences from and try to make this sound that is what Visioner is.
Looking forward, what is Visioner’s vision for upcoming plans? Do you guys have any top secret projects you want to spill to me about?
Jayden: We might have another song to release soon I guess…
Robbie: Yeah, we have some stuff in the works and things coming out very soon. Dates and times are to be determined, but we are definitely in the works of things, were definitely doing more demos and recording more music to hopefully release to everyone and share what we're doing.
I know with like everything that happened with COVID, we were kind of stuck on the border between each other where it was really hard for us to kind of work with the border closing and Jayden living on one side and me living on the other. Like we are right now (at time of interview) are sitting in my studio, where we do a lot of our work, and with border closures kind of prohibited us from getting a lot more done than what we wished. But we have been working hard the last couple of months to get some more music for the fans and they’ll be seeing some stuff very soon that is for sure.
I think we're gonna diverse it up a little bit, we definitely are trying to kind of like keep two to diverse fields, we want that heavier creepier side, but we also want to bring in like a lighter poppier more melodic side as well. We really want to stretch out the bounds of what we do and show that we are a really well versatile band and that we can do a lot.
That's amazing, it's good to have diversity, just music for everyone.
Is there anything else that you guys would like to say about Psyche, about the band or any messages you want to get out to fans?
Robbie: I guess all we could say is for everybody to go and check out Psyche and keep listening, the YouTube music video is out, follow our Spotify, and all that stuff like your support means everything. We cannot thank you enough for listening and supporting us doing everything you guys do because really without the fans and support we wouldn't be doing what we're doing.
That was the Victorian metalcore visionaries Robbie and Jayden from Visioner spilling the tea and some spooky stories about their latest track Psyche. Go check out the new single and official music video (I highly recommended watching the video during daylight, unless you’re one of those people who listens to serial killer documentary podcasts on the train to your 9-5 office job).
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