I recently got to speak with Dan Stover, drummer of Detroit Punk band “Break Anchor. Check out the interview below.
Break Anchor’s last album was in 2015, how do you feel the reception from that was? Can we expect anything new in 2017? Possibly a new LP, EP, or a possible split?
Dan – ‘In a van down by river’ did do pretty well. We made a lot of top 10 lists for 2015 and still continue to sell vinyls of it – In our opinion, against all the EPs and Splits we did previously, it is our favorite work. Since that came out, we have been working on new songs. For 2017 we currently have a lot planned – at least 2 splits with some great friends of ours, an EP and hopefully a new LP. It’s all a continuous work in progress and we’ve just been buckling down writing.
With the likes of other bands you’ve played with, and other bands singer Jay is / was in how does Break Anchor find their perfect blend of a heavier punk yet melodic sound?
Dan – Well, you kind of answered your own question with that one. Everything Jay, Cris, Kyle and I have done previously in other bands can be seen and reflected in our music, especially our newest stuff. Jay and Cris, in the early 90s, had been in a few bands together that definitely had a heavier gauge to them. That seems to making a MAJOR comeback with our newest stuff. We’ve also just been taking some inspiration from just more melodic stuff in general. In fact, when we don’t have names to give the new songs yet, we refer to them as bands they remind us of. “Texas is the reason – Cris”, “Smashing Pumpkins – Kyle”, “Lawrence Arms – Jay” for example (which are all real examples). But, in general, I believe Jay had said that he’d like to take our sound back to why he originally wanted to put this group together – Fugazi and Jawbreaker were the original inspirations and we’re hoping that is reflected on our upcoming releases.
Where does Break Anchor fall into with importance between all the other bands members are in?
Dan – Between the 4 of us, these are the following bands we are involved in; The Suicide Machines, Snakewing, Hellmouth, Reuther, Jay Navarro &The Traitors and even Kyle was playing in Grayling – and fuck, tomorrow the list could be longer! As far as ‘Importance’ goes between all of these projects, it’s really hard to give an adequate priority to them. We put in what we can and work hard – As should everyone who plays in multiple groups. It’s a commitment you should always take seriously.
Can we expect any full tours for the band in 2017 or just short strings of shows here and there?
Dan – I’d like to say we would be able to do a full tour later in the year – and that’s me being optimistic! Can’t make any promises, mostly because we just don’t really know. We’ve mostly been focusing on getting these new songs done, booking a studio and figuring out which labels are releasing them. I can safely say there will be strings of shows, but a full tour for this year is not guaranteed (But, maybe if you all apply some additional pressure…)
How has living in Detroit influenced the music you guys make?
Dan – Great question and one we get a lot, but understandably so. In the early to mid 90’s, Jay and Cris lived in a section of Midtown Detroit known as ‘Cass Corridor’ (I just call it ‘Midtown’, but that’s my generation). South of Wayne State University, but before you hit downtown (For those familiar with Detroit geography). They write songs about that time in their lives and reflect on the bands they were in at the time playing venues that are still there today (for the most part). So, being there at that time, when it was a pretty rough area created a plethora of great memories and experiences to dig through. Cris and Jay wrote a song about their experiences living there, it was on the LP called “West Alexandrine” and we did a video for it. I lived in that area from 2008 to 2012, when I went to college at Wayne State. I think it’s pretty cool that we each had experiences there, just at different periods. But, honestly every Detroit band writes about their experiences IN Detroit – I don’t it’s done intentionally. It just happens when you live here.
Also how is the music scene in Detroit?
Dan – Currently the scene in Detroit is strong. Venues are doing well, NEW venues are popping up – Every time I go to a local show or see someone post photo from any local shows, they’re always packed, people having a great time, touring bands being well taken care of always. The Detroit scene even has great reach out to the suburbs and even downriver – It’s definitely being passed onto a new generation and it’s in good hands. It always hurts to see bigger bands not stopping through, but hopefully they’ll learn their lesson and make Detroit mandatory from here on out.
Anything else you’d like to throw out to fans lastly?
Dan – Hello Fans, We promise we are working on new material and are going to hit the road with some shows as soon as we can. In the meantime, feel free to say ‘Hey!’ and pop up to Detroit to see us! Thanks, Dan of BA