If you were a young band trading in heavy music, it’s fair to say the first part of this decade wouldn’t have been an easy ride for you. There are a lot of ripping bands that we lost before they could reach anywhere near their creative peak in those years. But, despite the hard slog, the passion for riffs is unquenchable.
“I was in college a few years ago and I was coming towards the end of my degree,” says Bailer guitarist Chris Harte. “I thought a lot about what I wanted to do with my life, and, although I love computers, it just hit me… I didn’t want to make a career out of that. I love riffs, I love heavy music, I love banging tunes, and all the guys in the band are in the same boat as me. We’re a bit older now and we just want to leave our egos at the door, get our heads down and write heavy music. We’re not interested in doing it part time or playing every other weekend. We want this for real.”
It’s an admirable trait to have, especially as Bailer’s hometown of Cork in Ireland is, as Chris tells us, hardly a mecca for metal music. In fact, we should be grateful Bailer made it out of their homeland at all.
“It’s super-tough, I’m not gonna lie,” he sighs. “In terms of gigging there are about five or six venues in Ireland where you can pull a crowd. And you can’t play those places more than a couple of times a year. It feels like things are moving a bit for us now; we’ve had great reviews for our new EP, especially from yourselves in Metal Hammer, but the problem for us is how do we capitalise on that when the perception is that we’re stuck on this rock over here?”
Obviously, the internet has helped Bailer get their music into the ears of more people, but it’s not enough for Chris. He, and the other guys in the band, want more.
“You can go online and watch a video of a band and it can look great,” he says. “But you don’t get that rumbling bass shaking through your body. We need to be put in front of people, it’s where this music lives or dies. So, we’re spending as much time as we can trying to work out how we can capitalise on this moment and get in front of as many people as we possibly can.”
Having listened to their latest self-titled EP, it’s not just Bailer who are keen for live dates – we are, too. Leaning heavily on the blueprint of Every Time I Die or Cancer Bats’ wonderfully riff-heavy hardcore, the music they’ve captured is utterly throat-throttling on record. We can’t imagine how much it’ll go off live. But we want to see it.
“A lot of people do compare us to Every Time I Die,” Chris smiles. “They’re my favourite band, so I have zero problem with that. But you look at the way that they’ve built up, and that The Bronx are getting big again, and Comeback Kid, too; there’s a real renaissance in this genre, and hopefully we can scratch that itch when people do see or hear us.
With hardcore on its way back up, don’t let Bailer slip between the cracks.
Bailer Ireland and Northern Ireland tour dates
15 May: Voodoo, Belfast (w/ Coilguns)
16 May: Grandsocial, Dublin (w/ Coilguns)
17 May: Freds, Cork (w/ Coilguns)
18 May: Dolans, Limerick (w/ Coilguns)
19 May: Roisin Dubh, Galway (w/ Coilguns)
22 Jun: Cleeres, Kilkenny
29 Jun: Fibbers, Dublin
30 Jun: Foundry, Belfast
20 Jul: Townlands Festival, Macroom