July 2013 interview by Todd Jolicoeur, photos by mintypics.com, 10 Years group photo by Rebecca Clark
Lead singers and guitarists are cool, but no band would survive without a solid rhythm section. We were fortunate enough to throw some questions by Brian Vodihn, current drummer and ex-guitarist of 10 Years.
ToddStar: Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule for us. We appreciate it. If it is okay, I would love to jump right into discussing your latest release, Minus The Machine. What can you briefly tell us about that disc, that most people may not know on the surface?
Brian: Minus the Machine is the first release on the band's own Palehorse Records. Also, I recorded this album at my own studio. It was a very grassroots style project.
ToddStar: Several songs are very strong. Are there any favorites of yours that you find yourself going back to? Are there any songs you wish in retrospect were different?
Brian: We are totally happy with all the songs and my favorites seem to change all the time. I go through phases with different songs. I think that currently my favorite songs on the album are “Soma” and “And All The Other Colors.”
ToddStar: Having been at this for about 14 years, do you still feel and hear the growth in this band?
Brian: I absolutely do. In fact, we have been throwing in a lot of improv jams during our live shows lately and we have definitely been feeling a certain sense of growth just simply due to experimentation and a lot of shows.
ToddStar: If you had to describe the sound of 10 Years to someone who has never heard of you, how would you do that?
Brian: I would just say it's rock music that is melodic and has a bit of a darker edge.
ToddStar: When performing live, do you find that you mix the material evenly from all of your albums, or do you tend to play more of the newer material? Are there any songs from your earlier releases that you feel will always be a part of your live show?
Brian: We try to not put too much emphasis on which albums the songs come from. Our singer Jesse is always concerned about that, but as a whole, we try to just construct a set list that we think works for the vibe that we are going for. Certain cities have a more energetic approach to enjoying our music and some more cerebral. We may cater our song choices to our location.
ToddStar: Speaking of live shows, you have a date with your fans in Flint, MI at The Machine Shop (http://www.themachineshop.info/). What is it about The Shop that keeps you guys coming back time and time again?
Brian: The Machine Shop is always a good time. Kevin and the staff are all amazing, and the fans in Flint never disappoint.
ToddStar: Do you have any specific memories of playing at The Shop or any specific shows that really stick out in your memory?
Brian: I remember playing there back in the day when we were still touring in a van. I remember accumulating about 10 or so Machine Shop shirts over my first couple years of touring. I kinda felt like we were the house band for the place! We played there so many times.
ToddStar: If you had to pick possible pairings for an ideal tour, what other bands would you like to see 10 Years out on the road with, either as support or headliners?
Brian: 10 Years – Deftones – Incubus - Nine Inch Nails – Tool
ToddStar: What is next for the band? Any plans to record any time soon as a follow up to the release that dropped in 2012?
Brian: We will be releasing an acoustic EP this fall. Our fans seem to enjoy the acoustic side of the band and it's always fun for us to shed a different light on some familiar songs.
ToddStar: Do you find any of the other arts affect your music or the way you approach writing, recording, or playing live with 10 Years?
Brian: Actually, I often find that Movies can affect my writing. A good film can stir emotions in me and I can use those emotions to create music.
ToddStar: Are there any bands that are currently releasing music or touring that influence you personally or professionally? What is the last CD/mp3 album you listened to?
Brian: I would say that the bands I listed for my "dream tour" would be some of the greatest influences on us. The last album I listened to was actually the Inception film score from Hans Zimmer.
ToddStar: Who made you want to sit down behind a drum kit and beat things? Are there any players today that you admire or are impressed by?
Brian: I started playing drums on accident. I started 10 Years to be the guitar player but we couldn't find a drummer so I agreed to play drums for one show – haha - that obviously didn't happen. One show turned into years. I would say that my favorite drummers are Carter Beauford, Dennis Chambers, and Danny Carey.
ToddStar: If there were one piece of music in the history of time that you wish you had written, what would it be and why?
Brian: Moonlight Sonata from Beethoven. It's simple and beautiful.
ToddStar: What is the meaning of life?
Brian: Not sure, but I hear you can find it at Big John Steak and Onion
ToddStar: Other than making sure everyone checks out your website and Facebook page, are there any other current projects or sites you would like to promote?
ToddStar: Thanks again for taking the time and we look forward to more 10 Years in 2013 and beyond!!!