Tasmania. Not the first place you’d look for metalcore bands. In fact, at the risk of sounding harsh, it is probably the last place you’d look too. But if you were to scratch the surface you’d find an array of bands sharing a common thread with their mainland peers: to be noticed.
Save the Clock Tower are a perfect and prime example of a band residing in this category. Hailing from Launceston, the quartet, despite their locational disadvantage; have shared the stage in support of such acts as Parkway Drive, The Amity Affliction, Dream on, Dreamer, and House vs. Hurricane. Most recently the band embarked on an Australian wide tour in support of French progressive metallers, Betraying the Martyrs.
“That tour was fantastic. [Betraying the Martyrs] played amazing sets, like really top notch shows,” Save the Clock Tower’s vocalist, Luke Vaessen tells us.
“A lot of the guys have been listening to them for years but they’re not really the type of thing I listen to. Yet they really blew me away, it was great.”
Yet it wasn’t just the music that took Vaessen by surprise. The response given to Save the Clock Tower by the crowd was one of comfort and surprise.
“We went into that tour, not expecting much of a response but we were really surprised at the involvement we got. Even if people weren’t singing or moshing, they were standing and watching us and nodding their heads; even just that they watched and acknowledged us was really important. It’s better than standing and talking or being on their phones.”
Even more recently than touring, the band dropped their debut album, ‘Wasteland’ to high praise.
“We worked really hard on [‘Wasteland’] to put out a strong debut that people would really appreciate and like. It was a lot of hard work as the recording process took a long time to do and complete but what came out was something we were all really proud of.”
Although there’s an assumption all albums take a long time and inevitably are hard work; it is point that needs no reinforcing for the Tassie boys.
“Well, we had a lot of editing issues.” And Vaessen means, A LOT.
“We had to redo guitars twice as we had editing problems with that. Vocal we did three times as we had more editing issues and our old guitarist left so I had to do his singing bits on the record. It was a bit of a struggle.”
But despite all these setbacks, the band pushed onwards, crafting a record that any artist would love to have attributed to them. The outcome has been one that was worth the challenges. Looking at the bigger picture though, you begin to see why so much effort has been poured into ‘Wasteland’. It is the simple fact that the group is isolated.
“Tasmania is very shut off from the rest of Australia and there’s a big stretch of water between us which doesn’t help,” Vaessen laughs.
“But it makes us work really hard to prove ourselves. It’s a hard scene to break into with Melbourne and Sydney having so many bands. We wanted to prove ourselves and get ourselves out there for the world to see.”
‘Wasteland’ is out now via Bullet Tooth and Faction /Sony Music. Read the full transcript here.