I speak to Paolo Gregoletto of metal monoliths Trivium, playing Ipswich Corn Exchange

Florida metal band Trivium, playing Ipswich Corn Exchange on March 21

Florida metal band Trivium, playing Ipswich Corn Exchange on March 21 - Credit: Archant

Trivium bassist Paolo Gregoletto is back home in the band’s native Florida, enjoying a break from touring when I call.

The band's latest album, Silence in the Snow, was released last October

The band's latest album, Silence in the Snow, was released last October - Credit: Archant

They’ve spent a couple of days rehearsing and are now getting ready to head to the UK, with gigs at Ipswich Corn Exchange on March 21 and The LCR in Norwich on March 20.“The tour’s great. We did six weeks in America and it was unbelievable. On the last day we got the first top 10 single (Until The World Goes Cold) in the history of our band... It’s been a good time,” says Gregoletto, who joined the metal monoliths in 2004.Latest album Silence in the Snow, released last October, charted in the national top 10; reaching top spot on the rock chart. The band took a big chance with the record, one that’s thankfully paid off.

“Every tour we’ve gone out, the new songs have become better received live. When you write a record you can never tell how it’s going to actually translate, if people are going to get it. Sometimes people, especially with our genre of music, have problems accepting things can change or you can try something new. The fact our fans have given us the chance to always experiment and grow has always been a blessing. We went in there with a big, bold idea and it seems to be working out so far so we’re very thankful.”

In the past, rock and metal bands who change things up are seen as sell outs courting commercial success. Gregoletto says since Trivium started touring professionally 10 years or so ago the landscape has changed.

“When I was young I totally understood a fan’s perspective of seeing a band change; feeling that betrayal as things aren’t exactly the same from record to record. As I’ve grown up in this band I now realise you’re not in a vacuum where things don’t change.

“We’ve always wanted to push ourselves with each record... You’ve got to find a reason for going into record; we don’t ever be the band that justs record a record to tour. I want to have a reason to go in there, to have an idea and make it happen - that’s the ultimate accomplishment. We’re very passionate about what we do and the fans are just as passionate back; that keeps this genre relevant and alive.”

Trivium are always talking about and writing new material. They wanted Silence in the Snow to stand out and to find new ways to get in front of new audiences.

“We want to bring the power, the riffs, our message, all the stuff that we’ve been doing for the last 10 years and make a record that doesn’t let those things go but takes the melodic side of our band and goes further than we’ve ever gone (with it). Not just for a song, let’s make the record around that idea.”

Silence in the Snow is reworked version of an eight-year-old demo. It became the centrepiece of the album, with the rest of the songs built around it.

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“We knew the most obvious pushback was going to be there wasn’t any screaming on the record. We were in the studio, at the point of the last week of vocals and we were talking about this; about should we maybe just put stuff on some of the songs just to have it. At that point we were like ‘we’ve come this far with the idea’.

“We told each other we were going to do whatever it takes to push this record to where it needed to and if we put it on now that’s the definition of selling out, that would be taking a step back from where our true feelings are. We’d (be) putting it on there just to appease a group of fans. Obviously we don’t want to do something that pushes people from our band but we have to stay true to what the vision and idea was.

“I’m very happy because we rose to the challenge of the occasion and we didn’t back down from fear of criticism. You can’t let that dictate from what you’re going to do as a band. It was like ‘yeah, can we do this?’ That’s why we feel like this record is just a big milestone for us, we’re able to go the distance.”

Focusing on melody, on songwriting, isn’t a bad thing for rock and metal bands.

“It’s one of those things that’s become so stigmatised... One thing I’d love to hammer home to kids playing now is don’t shy away from trying to write songs, there’s nothing wrong with writing something other people like and many might respond to you. There’s that balance... We love the heavy stuff, riffs, playing fast at times but you don’t have to lose the melodic sensibilities that make them go beyond just being a track on an album.

“It’s the melodies and hooks that have lasted and when we play those songs, people still react like they’re hearing them for the first time. That’s something special you want to capture over and over. You have to find a new way to create that sort of excitement and it’s not always the same formula, the same thing; you have to come from a different angle. I guess that’s the main theme of the album musically... There’s a lot more personal stuff, we definitely focused more on the lyrics and vocals than we’ve ever done.”

Trivium pride themselves on their live shows. Gregoletto says they’ve never been tighter, not that they’re taking anything for granted.

“We want to grow as a live act. In our genre, the bar is set so incredibly high by all the great bands who have come before us then all the great new bands out there; you have to constantly constantly up your game.”

Frontman Matt Heafy has said the UK was the first place to ever truly embrace Trivium and make them feel at home. He, like Gregoletto, feels the band is a better live band than we they ever been. For them to pay true homage to the place who took them in first, they can now give fans the Trivium they have always deserved.

The latest tour, boasting the obvious hits and some surprises, sees them playing much more intimate venues than before.

“Some of the first couple of tours we did in the UK were were a lot of the smaller towns that don’t get the big tours. Obviously I love playing big shows, I love the festivals but it’s important to get out to fans who maybe can’t make it to shows in bigger cities every time; to not lose connection with those fans,” adds Gregoletto.

“I think that’s why our band has always had a great career in the UK, (because) we made an effort... As long as there’s a PA there, we’ll show up and sing.”