Enertia – Blue Collar Beating Part IWednesday, 12th August 2015
Two traits that fuel the best metal bands of any era are perseverance and integrity. Do not fool your fans into thinking that shifting with musical tides or commercial aspirations doesn’t come at a hefty price. Fortunately those who dig deep into the cracks of the genre that we all love can find that diamond in the rough – and for many people across the world, upstate New York’s Enertia would be that band to champion.
Starting in 1995 and only losing one member in their career (guitarist Dave Stafford in the early 2000’s), the band played hundreds of shows in their career throughout the United States, recording a series of fine albums and giving the fans a killer mixture of power, thrash, melody, and hooks. They would make appearances on tribute records for Pantera, Dio, Metallica, and AC/DC to further enhance their profile – and following the Force record in 2004 and subsequent struggles to get proper compensation from Mausoleum Records, almost signaled the nail in Enertia’s coffin.
Thankfully due to those two above mentioned qualities, the newest album Piece of the Factory may indeed be Enertia’s best yet. Having witnessed the band live at an early Powermad Festival appearance in Baltimore, MD during the late 90’s, I felt now was a great time to catch up with bassist Joe Paciolla and discuss the ups, downs, ins and outs of the 20 year old band – where they’ve been, how they’ve handled things, and what the future may hold.
Dead Rhetoric: Your latest full-length Piece of the Factory hits the streets 11 years after your last set of original material Force. Tell the readers about the trials and tribulations that took place to get this new product out?
Joe Paciolla: (laughs). This is a pretty in-depth question. Our old label that we were signed to in Europe didn’t end up paying us a dime of what they promised us. That was a big factor. And then… pretty much I guess a lack of motivation amongst us. A couple members didn’t want to do the record by reaching into their pockets as we had all spent so much on our previous release (and I can’t say I blame them), so that was another factor. What we had agreed upon doing was recording the songs that we had written from 2004-2007 as a home demo just for us to have for our own records. It was never meant to be released- we wrote these songs that we all really liked and wanted to demo them.
Scott is pretty handy with doing home recording, building his system at the time. We recorded the drums in October of 2007, and after the drums were done, Jeff took his drums out from my house and that was the end of playing live as Enertia since then. I was planning on recording bass tracks (and) that took a lot longer than anticipated because life sort of got in the way. The band wasn’t a priority anymore. Two years down the road I had finally finished the last tracks, now we are talking the beginning of 2010. We still have to do guitars and vocals. We were trying to figure out a way to get the guitars recorded so they would sound half way decent- we were going to go to Scott’s house. We were up in the air, Roman had found a couple of tentative places but we sort of knew none of them were going to sound decent at all.
We ended up waiting and luckily in 2011, a friend of mine name Jeff Gray asked me to play bass on a couple of original songs that he wrote. We looked for a studio, we found a studio, and he asked if Roman would want to play leads on these songs, and he needed a drummer so maybe I could get Jeff. Since I got those two, maybe Scott could sing backup vocals, and he ended up singing lead vocals on both of the tracks. It ended up being Enertia backing my friend on these two songs. We ended up having such a good time with that one day session at that studio, we hit it off with the owner. Fast forward a few months from June to September, Roman’s tentative recording area where he was going to record ended up falling through. I ended up asking him if he wanted to do the guitars at the Recording Company, and that’s what we ended up doing. Roman was done in two months, Scott took his time and was singing one song a night, once a month. We ended up going up there 12-13 times for him to track the 10 songs that appeared on the record. From 2011 to the end of 2014 to finish those parts, and then we mixed the record and here we are. Trust me there were a lot of trials and tribulations in there!
We all had a lot of faith in the songs and it turned out better than we could have anticipated. Once we crossed the line from it being a home demo we did more editing on the bass and drums to sound better, the professional recording made a big difference.
Dead Rhetoric: I’d say this album encompasses a wider dynamic palate for the followers of Enertia – featuring some more commercial shades at times while also being angrier and heavier in others. What can you tell me regarding the specific songs “The Hardest Sorrow”, “Beside You, Beside Me”, and “The Prisoner”?
Paciolla: Let’s see. “The Hardest Sorrow” I’m really not aware of what it’s about, it’s a love song of sorts. Something that Scott wrote and Roman was definitely listening to a lot of different influences in this time period. We definitely weren’t as angry as we were in our earlier Enertia days, our late 20’s/ early 30’s when we were writing songs like “And So You Fall”. That played a big part in the diversity of these songs. “Beside You, Beside Me” is about a friend of Scott’s that happened to pass away from cancer, so that was a really emotional track for him. It was really important for him to write this song for his friend- he did a great job and Roman… that was one of the later songs he wrote, he came in with melodic ideas we never used before. “The Prisoner”, that was one of the earlier songs we wrote in these sessions, probably 2004. I think we were feeling a lot of animosity at that point in time because we didn’t get paid by the label. We are 10 years into our career so to speak and we didn’t catch the break that we were always hoping to catch. We were just hoping that something would happen with Force and it never did, that was a song that just ended up being a little angrier.
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