Room Thirteen: So, introduce yourself and tell me what your band is all about?
Mike Hasty (Guitarist, Walls of Jericho): Umm. I'm Mike, I play guitar in Walls of Jericho... and I don't know what we're about!
R13: You just enjoy yourself and have fun?
MH: Yeah. I play in a band so I have a good time, we try and have a positive message. We don't have a mission that we're after. We probably used to, but people just don't care. After a while you forget the reasons. Personally, I do this because I enjoy it, it's why I put in all the effort.

R13: Are you running a little late today? You looked rushed as you got here earlier!
MH: Yeah, running a tiny bit late, we had to pick up some drums that were meant to be ready four days ago, and they weren't. It meant that today we needed to get them. We went to Stonehenge as well. We played in Newport last night, so it wasn't too bad- sort of on the way. Our bass player wasn't with us the last time we were here so it was his first time seeing it. We were a little late, but it happens. Doors aren't till 7:30pm, so it's okay. We've not played in Southampton before. I think the closest we've played to here would be... Exeter?

R13: What's your tour plan for the next few weeks?
MH: We're playing Kingston tomorrow, then Glasgow, Aberdeen. We've not played there before. Then back down for Leeds, Nottingham, Birmingham and Swindon. We have eight more days here. Then, we're supporting Sick of it All, mainly in France, Spain and Italy. They're great guys. It will be a great tour, lots of fun.
R13: How about in the long term?
MH: Nah, there is a lot we would like to do, but nothing set in stone yet. Our record is only two and a half months old so there's a lot of life left in it. It came out when we were playing on the Family Values tour. The people we were playing in front of didn't know us anyway, so it was hard to judge the reaction. We've not played in the states since then, so it's hard to tell. We played in Canada, a couple of shows in Brazil and now we're here. We always judge album reactions from playing in the states, so I don't really know at the moment.

R13: What size venues do you play in America then?
MH: Our tours are so different- when we played Family Values and when we played at the Ozzfest there are 20-30 thousand venues. When we headline, it's normally between 200-800 capacity venues. It depends on what area you're playing in. In the winter we like to play in the South- California... to get away from the snow. In the summer the further north the better. Sometimes it has to do with crowds. We do well in certain places and look forward to going there. We always like playing in New York and Boston and California.

R13: Are there any particular bands that you like to take on tour with you?
MH: We've been out with Bury The Dead a lot and we've taken Undying a couple of times. We know so many bands and people, it's always cool. We don't even really don't even take them out really. Been out on tour with Unearth a few times as well and recently we toured with a band called August Burns Red, which I thought were great. They're really heavy, which I like. I was very excited by how they sounded.

R13: Any other bands that you think the UK should be listening to?
MH: You know what's about. If there's a band who you should be listening to you probably are! I don't really listen to that much music. Candice has been listening to Stone Sour a lot.

R13: Do you have a typical recording process or does it change every time you record material?
MH: No, we don't really have a set way, it changes all the time. The last time we went there and recorded for 6 weeks. Every time the recording process has been different for us but most of the time we will have everything done and ready to go by the time we get to the studio. The lyrics or the patterns might be a little loose but we do try to be prepared. This record we were the least prepared. We wanted to leave things open for us so that we could work on our new ideas. The songs were structured, but we wanted to go in and record and see what they sounded like and shift things around. In the end it was nice to do, but not that much actually got changed. You get used to playing something and that's the way you're used to hearing it. When you change it, the song sounds weird so you often go back to the way it was before.
R13: What bits on the new record did you change?
MH: There is a song called 'And Hope To Die' where we had the parts but we hadn't written any of the song at all. The parts were written and we worked on it, changing it round. What we had written and what the song sounds like are two very different things. There's a slow song on the record too, 'No Saving Me'. We were not sure if the song would actually get recorded, or even make it onto the record but musically we didn't have any vocals for it when we started. It was one of the first things we got down in music, so we had a lot of time to think about what we wanted to do. When you're recording music you don't always have a goal of what you want to do- you'll have ideas you want to work on.

R13: Do your songs change over the years when you play them live? Do you notice it?
MH: When you play it the songs can feel different over time, but when you're listening to it they don't sound different at all. Usually though, when you get to the point where your record is about to be released, you're sick of it already! You probably wrote the song six or seven months before then and you'll have played it a billion times at practice when you're going over it together. Then you have to record it and again, play it hundreds of times! You hear it so often that by the time it's out you're sick of hearing it.

I have a tendency to forget how to play some songs if I've not played them for months, so I always go through and make sure I know all my parts. It's weird- sometimes it's like learning a new song! It always comes back to you though. Too many things happen between writing the song and playing it months down the line so you also forget after a while who wrote what part of the songs after a while- then it becomes just a song. When we're thinking of set lists we'll put a play list on our iPods and listen to the songs and decide on an order.

When someone says they want to hear a certain song, I don't mind playing it because you're playing it for them, not yourself. If they're excited about the song, then that's what I want to play. The fun comes from playing to people who are excited about the songs and that's why playing live is so great.