We recently had the opportunity to sit down with Kyle Bihrle & Doug Court of Sirens & Sailors while they made their stop in Philadelphia, PA at The Barbary while on tour with Beartooth & Vanna, Sylar & Alive Like Me, which they are on until the end of October. Heres our interview with the guys below.
Shana: How did the band start?
Kyle: We were all in different bands in our local area. We all had played together in different bands knowing each other from our older bands. Eventually our guitarist Todd and I and another one of our friends started jamming at our other bands practice just messing around and we had eventually wrote music of our own with never the intention of going out and playing shows but we got invited to play some shows and we went and played our first show and it just clicked to us that we wanted to pursue this band.
Shana: How did you come up with the name Sirens and Sailors?
Kyle: The name is based off of Greek Mythology. It’s the ultimate story of deception there’s these creatures that sing and these sailors that seemed like beautiful woman and beautiful voices and they sing them into the shores and ultimately they were just ugly disgusting creatures that led these sailors to their death through the deception of their beautiful voices. It`s a little bit more than what people think it is.
Doug: People usually think oh sirens this sailors that. This has been a name for a lot longer than people believe. When people were making band names like death this, blood that, Kyle took a different approach to do it with a little bit of a backstory that once you find out what its about you`ll appreciate it even more.
Kyle: It takes some thought.
Doug: Yeah using your thinker not your talker
Kyle: A lot of people approach us and say “we expected something completely different” and we get that all of the time, and that could be a good and a bad thing but to us it should be about the music not what about your band name is so people that actually appreciate music and take the time to listen to us then they might find something new that they like.
Shana: Where are you guys from?
Doug: The beautiful Rochester, New York
Shana: I could totally hear a bit of an accent but I couldn’t tell where it was from.
Doug: It`s all the way upstate near Canada
Kyle: It’s like an hour and twenty minutes away from Canada.
Doug: We`ve gotten Canadian a little bit of New York City sometimes.
Shana: How long have you guys been a band?
Kyle: We`ve been playing shows on and off since we started in 2005, that’s when it wasn’t our intention to be a full time band but then we started touring full time around 2008-2009.
Shana: What’s your favorite tour that you`ve been on so far?
Doug: This one.
Kyle: This one!
Doug: This one as far as like crowds and we have a lot of friends on this tour and we`ve also made some great new friends already and were only four or five days in. This tour is great.
Kyle: Crowds are insane.
Doug: We`ve had a lot of tours with friends where we have known them previously and then got the chance to play shows with them every night so those tours are also very good.
Shana: So how has this tour been so far?
Doug: Unreal almost.
Kyle: This tour has been insane. Every night has been sold out so far.
Shana: So your most recent release “Skeletons” came out in back in October of 2013, so its been a year any new music in the works?
Kyle: We started writing, we`ve been touring so much this year. The intention is when we get home from this tour to start writing
Doug: Get in there and write all day every day
Kyle: We`re planning on recording the album around February, and then have it time for the summer.
Doug: The way that we write is a lot different than most bands, which I’m not saying is better or worse but we all like to actually sit in a room with our instruments and really hash out our ideas rather than through a computer or having one person write a part and then sending it to another person. We like to keep it old fashioned. We really want to get a feel out the song before we got into the studio and a lot of the studios always say “oh wow you came so prepared” but its really we`ve been playing these songs nonstop for three months and now were going into the studio to record them. We all know our parts before even going to the studio and its more fun that way for me anyway.
Shana: What`s your favorite song to play live?
Doug: “Go for the throw” for me.
Kyle: “Go for the throw”
Doug: “High intensity” the drum part that I play I have a lot of fun playing it
Kyle: It`s the second song of the set so we have kind of out introduction song
Doug: By that time people are a little bit more warmed up and they can get into it.
Kyle: By the second song they either like us or they don’t and we can get a reaction out of them
Shana: How has the reaction been so far?
Kyle: Tonight we didn’t expect it to be that crazy and it was. We`ve never played Philadelphia before we`ve always played around it. It was insane the reaction was amazing.
Shana: Yeah the Philly kids are nuts
Doug: Yeah it definitely has that New York City vibe and people are probably going to hate me because I said that.
Kyle: It’s just that they express themselves more
Doug: Yeah it’s definitely a good thing. They want to have fun and that’s all that matters.
Shana: What is your most meaningful song and what’s the meaning behind it?
Kyle: All the songs are meaningful especially for me because when I’m writing the lyrics it’s obviously for a reason so each of them has there own meaning behind it and means something to me. Right now I feel like the most meaningful to me is probably a song called “The Chosen One” It’s the first song of the set and the first song on our new album. It’s an uplifting song encouraging people to do what they really want to do and don’t let anyone else tell you differently. Sure there’s band that write that stuff all the time but its means something to me because I have been told I cant do something and I have been shut down and I have been doubted. You can overcome anything you can do anything you set your mind to, and I love to express that to people. They’ve connected with it and said to me how much that songs means to them. When it means something to them it means something to me as well.
Shana: Who are your influences?
Doug: As a band they differ. My favorite band in the world is Blink-182 but obviously when you listen to Sirens and Sailors you’re not going to get that Blink-182 vibe. As a drummer I love Travis Barker, Shannon Lucas, every drummer these days are amazing in the metal scene. My influences are all over the place. I grew up playing Jazz and pop punk and then I joined this band and that’s when I started playing metal. I’m sure Kyles are all over the place too.
Kyle: Mine range from AC/DC to Queen to all that old stuff that my parents made me listen to growing up. The agony scene, or As I lay dying who are a huge influence of mine, Everytime I Die. We grew up an hour away from Buffalo so I grew up driving to every single Everytime I Die hometown show I could possibly go to
Doug: And he still does it
Kyle: and I will never stop until they stop so I hope they never stop.
Shana: Ideal tour with bands that are currently touring?
Kyle: In hearts wake
Doug: In hearts wake, we love that band. As far as size goes I would love to tour with Bring Me the Horizon, that new record they put out is phenomenal. A Day To Remember
Kyle: Every Time I Die, Stray From The Path
Doug: Beartooth again
Shana: How do you feel about the hardcore and pop punk scene coming together like Memphis May Fire and Yellowcard?
Doug: Oh it’s great
Kyle: The more variety it brings people together I don’t think music should be about genres it should be about music
Doug: I like it because the people who are there to see Yellowcard might have never heard of Memphis May Fire before and now they’ve listened to it and they go wow, and it might just be wow I never gave this style, this heavier music a chance and then that can broaden their whole music spectrum to ten fold
Kyle: It’s like when Linkin Park and OMAM went on tour. We love The Story So Far. We love pop punk music. I grew up listening to saves the day, get up kids, dashboard confessional, all that stuff
Doug: But don’t get us wrong I love metal music we play metal music in the van all day all the time one of my favorite bands of all time is volumes and they just put out a new record and I’ve been listening to that non stop
Kyle: That’s another band we would love to tour with, Volumes, don’t forget to add it to the list!
Doug: I`ll seriously go right from listening to Volumes to Lana Del Ray, right to the 1975, bad rabbits. We love everything.
Kyle: We`re musicians! We like music, we like talented musicians.
Doug: I would tour with the 1975 for sure. That would be amazing I would play and then go cool now let me watch them.
Shana: What’s your craziest moment on tour?
Kyle: Well we just got robbed in Europe
Doug: Robbed blind!
Shana: That`s been happening so often its awful.
Kyle: Plus we were overseas, they took every single dollar we had, all of our personal belongings
Shana: How did you guys get back?
Doug: We already had our plane tickets booked.
Kyle: and we still had our passports with us, and we had to play our shows on the way to catch the plane because that was the only way we were going to get there to get the gas money and we still had to front more of our own money, but it was an experience
Doug: Lesson learned
Kyle: and a memory we will never forget. The worst experience always turn out to be the best memories, as funny as that sounds
Doug: Another example we were in Chicago for NATO which is the North American Treaty Organization so all the world leaders were there, Obama, the prime minister of whoever, wherever and they thought we were some sort of terrorists so we literally got bothered four different times by groups of police officers. But the nail on the coffin was when we were driving to leave Chicago we passed this bridge and we get swarmed 50-60 cops pulls us out grab us search us and were just like look we are literally just a band trying to get out of here please stop. Now I look back on it and just think wow that’s really funny.
Shana: One last thing is there anything you want to say to your fans or someone who hasn’t heard of you yet?
Kyle: Well to our fans which are our friends, you are all are friends
Doug: You know the typically I love you guys, you’re of course going to hear that I love them to death
Kyle: We are the most grateful people, I`m not saying were anymore grateful than anybody else but we just always make sure to take the time that people know
Doug: Anyone that buys merch gets a great handshake they get a thank you, even if someone is holding the door open for us who’s like great set ill drop my gear for a second, chat with them for a second
Kyle: We`re not the type of band that sits in our van and waits to play then play and come back and sit in our van we like to hang out with everybody and interact that’s just the type of people we are. These people are coming to support us why can’t we show them that we are appreciative
Doug: So we love you all
Shana: Well thank you guys for the interview and I look forward to seeing you again.