INDIE ARTIST SPOTLIGHT
A new feature from the AIR staff to introduce you to
some of the amazing artists we carry in our store!
Kris Wiechmann is a guitarist/singer from the Syracuse, NY area and has played with some legendary metal bands from the area including Earth Crisis, Godbelow
and Brand New Sin.
in 2019 , he put out an amazing solo release entitled "The Heaviest Tenderness", which Animated Insanity Records is very happy to be carrying copies of it in our store! Below is a short interview that Joe Paciolla sent to Kris back in September of 2020 and we're happy to FINALLY be posting it on the site...
AIR: Hi Kris - Thanks for taking the time to do this interview for the AIR Indie
Artist Spotlight! Let's start with hearing about your musical influences and some of the bands, former and current that you've played in.
Kris: Thanks so much for the opportunity.
My influences are definitely a wide range. When I was very young I was first switched on by the early Van Halen records. I also got into Bad Company, The Eagles, Pink Floyd, and ZZ Top when I was very young. My parents had a real appreciation for music.
As I got older, I identified heavily with Metallica who eventually turned me onto Black Sabbath and The Misfits. I explore a lot of different styles and approaches to music still.
I started playing in bands pretty young.
I recorded a few albums with Earth Crisis. I Co-founded Godbelow. Those were probably my heaviest bands. Brand New Sin of course! My favorite band I ever did was a band called Hobo Graffiti. A bar band that played a lot of originals. Kinda like an acoustic punk band - Totally miss it. The Pallbearers is the name I give to the band that delivers the songs from here on out. It’s made up of my inner circle of musician partners.
AIR: Did you have the idea of doing a solo release for a long time? I'd like to hear some of the details about the making of it and who else playing on the recording with you and anything else you'd like to share about this project.
Kris: I did always want to do a solo thing for some time now I guess.
It really started to come together after the BNS CD United State came out. My divorce pretty much ended the band’s prospects of touring anymore and at the time The Hobos were more profitable anyway. I would write songs for The Hobos but always had hard rocker type ideas coming to me too. I started jamming with Justin Oatman from Hell On The Rise and we basically just started producing these songs that would comprise the album. He was a huge influence and breath of fresh air at the time.
I financed the entire album myself and it was excruciating. Justin went on to form Hell On The Rise and I ended up reconnecting with my old friend Joe Murphy (Godbelow, Freya, Unholy). I pretty much roped all my friends into playing on it. It was worth it!
AIR: Congrats on the disc winning a SAMMY award! Please explain to our readers what that is exactly and some of the details about the evening you won!
Kris: Winning the SAMMY was a real honor. It’s an awards ceremony that recognizes local bands and musicians for their various works and releases.
I usually don’t go for that kinda stuff but given the list of players and friends I convinced to play on the album I really wanted to win. It was great and an honor and I’m very proud of us for taking it home that night!
AIR: What are your future plans as far as being a solo artist goes?
Kris: I really just want to maintain a band that I can release music with. I’m always writing something. There’s nothing like having fantastic players on your side. My endeavors are simple. Write, record, release.
AIR: It was also exciting news to hear that Brand New Sin got together in 2019 to play a sold out hometown reunion show! Was that a one-time deal
or is there plans in the future once the pandemic subsides a bit? (hopefully the case in 2021!!)
Any talk about recording new material?
What were some of the highlights you and the guys experienced when BNS was on the road? I know you guys played a ton of shows and toured with a lot of amazing bands.
Kris: Ya know it’s really kinda sad where BNS is concerned. I really had a terrific time reconnecting with them all. I love them so much. I just don’t have it in me to motivate them. I’ve written plenty with BNS in mind but will most likely record it all with The Pallbearers at some point. I will say this, the stuff we were writing was fixin to be great. Unfortunately I just don’t see the band collectively putting in the effort it takes. I’ve told em, “Say when.” I do still love them all very much. They’re just shitheads is all.
Highlights with BNS would be the entire ride. It was everything it was supposed to be. Just like the movies. I would love to do another album with them.
Thanks for the interview, Joe!