Did the untimely departure of JJ (to Plumb) and Tess (to Tess Wiley and
Her Orchestra) really affect the recording of the album and the band itself?
Tess left two years ago. I miss her because we were very close, but you grow out of relationships. Everyone, including Tess,was happier after we parted ways. The deal with JJ was a little more painful. He left after he had recorded all of his bass parts for this new record. We didn't know he had planned to leave until it happened. It was sad, but at that time we were not free from any of the label problems. Things weren't looking up and we all had to decide whether we could handle more of what we'd already been going through for a year and a half. We needed to "weed out" members. Again, everyone is happier in the long run.
What's up with that cool Spanish song you guys have been playing in concert?
Have you seen Il Postino? It is about a poet named Pablo Nuruda. Well, It's a great movie. Matt got a book of his poetry and put a melody to one of the poems.
The night I saw you guys in concert (at Mama Liana), Mark was playing guitar ... how's married life, Leigh?
I've been married for over a year and a half now. It's been incredible. We've honestly not had one day that has not been a complete blast. I know that it's not us though. We have given our marriage to God. He created us for each other, so as long as we honor Him and each other, I have faith that we're going to keep having these wonderful days. Mark played with us for some shows in the spring to help fill out the sound until we got someone permanent. Mark is playing drums for Zilch this month and is producing albums.
Leigh: Are you going to collaborate with Jason Martin (Starflyer 59) again like you did for the @rtcore CD?
No, that was a one time deal.
How does it feel to be free from an unethical record contract, and did the ordeal affect the bands growth significantly?
It feels great of course. We grew more out of getting here though. The last several years have been rough in one way but there were many blessings in there as well. Mark and I had so much time at home together, Dale met and married a wonderful girl named Carol, Matt just got engaged to my best friend Kristin. I think we've all seen God working with us a lot, personally and as a band.
How did you get hooked up with Steve Taylor?
We have always admired Steve Taylor. He was starting this new label and wanted us to be the first band on the label. We've been a great match artistically and spiritually. He was wonderful in the studio being very respectful of everyone's opinion. We are so very thankful for Steve and all the people that have believed in us through thick and thin. I'm not sure we would have made it through all of this as a band had it not been for Steve.