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Thu. Nov 14th, 2019

Madness To Creation

Where Insanity and Creativity Collide!

Mike Valante, guitarist for BRICK BY BRICK, Converses with Madness To Creation on Witnessing Murder, Hardcore Life, and “Hive Mentality”

5 min read

Editor’s Note:  Troy, New York’s own BRICK BY BRICK recently released their CD entitled “Hive Mentality”, which includes the hardcore party anthem “Bar Is Open” and “In My Ruins”, which features Vincent Bennett of The Acacia Strain on vocals.  This band takes no prisoners, they have plenty of middle fingers for all authority, and they believe in living life on their own terms.  Fans can find Brick By Brick at the following locations:

www.facebook.com/brickbybrickny

www.reverbnation.com/brickbybrick

Madness To Creation:  Looks like a crazy good time for the music video to “Bar Is Open”, take us into the video and how did you get linked up with Tony of Municipal Waste?

Mike:  Our goal was to have our own anthem. “Bar Is Open” was the hashtag that we started using when we did a West Coast American tour.  It was fun and lots of partying. Thrash can have that element of “party vibe”, so when the lyrics were written, Ray made sure to be reminiscent of our escapades throughout California. Tony was the perfect choice, since Mike was listening to a lot of Iron Reagan and Municipal Waste at the time he wrote the riffs for this song. Tony embodies what we were going for regarding this song.  We made the call and that was it!  He was happy to do it for us and help us since we have a history with him and his bands.

Madness To Creation: I live in Iowa, land of farmers and cows, take us into Troy, New York and the banger hardcore scene!

Mike:  Troy is like any other city except for the fact that the population isn’t as large. It has it’s nice areas and it’s bad areas. The bad areas are FAR more dangerous than many areas that I have come across. when i was a kid growing up, I witnessed a murder in an alley way. Watched a woman get her head caved in with a cinder block.  They also have areas that are gentrified.  So the mainstays of Troy are still proud to be from there (like a Brooklyn kind of thing), but nowadays, it’s overrun by hipsters in some areas. The troy scene started in the mid eighties and was in line with old school NYHC.  Troy-core was born with a crossover vibe ala Sheer Terror, Biohazard, Carnivore, Cro-Mags, etc. It always had metal intermingled. There isn’t any more venues in troy due to bad things happening…but the 518 scene is being held together on the outskirts.

Madness To Creation:  What does being hardcore mean to you?  I know day late dollar short question!

Mike:  Hardcore is the attitude behind the music. Blue collar, working class, angry youth against authority. The music can be metal, country, or whatever. it’s the attitude. Johnny Cash was hardcore. David Allan Coe is hardcore. NWA is hardcore.

Madness To Creation:  How did the show with Dying Fetus go?  Favorite memory playing with them?

Mike:  Our show with Dying Fetus topped out at around 800 people. We have played with them before and our package brings out all the metal kids from the 518.  All bands were different genres of hardcore/metal and it was a great mix.  My favorite memory was not remembering the last hour of the evening!  ha!

Madness To Creation:  Take us into the studio with Vincent of The Acacia Strain, what was the most fun and rewarding thing about collaborating with Vincent in “In My Ruins”?

Mike:  Vincent is a great guy.  Down to Earth and a little awkward socially. He’d give you the shirt off of his back. This song was a redo from 2012. We redid it because we wanted Ray on it and Vincent did not hesitate to jump on board to redo his tracks. BxB & TAS have played numerous times together and we do a yearly toy drive and raise a shit ton of toys for kids!

Madness To Creation:  Describe “Hive Mentality” utilizing either a famous historical event or a movie title!

Mike:  Hive is a middle finger to authority and their ways of tricking you into submission through social media and having to rely on what is given to you through their programs. it is a warning. People need to wake up and pay attention.  Don’t be sheep.  Think of the movie “They Live”.

Madness To Creation:  Brick By Brick is heading out to Europe this year!  Favorite place to throw down in Europe!

Mike:  This is our second time in Europe and we are hitting different places.  Last year, Sound Of Revolution was my favorite spot!  played in front of a LOT of people!

Madness To Creation:  Most godawful moment ever on stage!

Mike:  Ha…….Riverside California……..Riverside Ray!……was so drunk (because we showed up at 11am and we didn’t go on until 9pm and there was free booze)……Ray was speaking in tongues and dumped a guy out of his wheelchair. **we do not hate the disabled….hahah he actually had a great time.

Madness To Creation:  Anything you would like to add in regards to Brick By Brick or “Hive Mentality”.

Mike:  Upstate Records has done a great job for us promoting this release. Look them up and check out all their bands.  GREAT friggin bands on that label.

Madness To Creation:  Thank you for taking the time to interview with me for Madness To Creation!

Mike:  Thank you for taking the time to check us out!!!

And there you have it!  Brick By Brick has some gigs coming up in Europe and East Coast of the United States.  Check out tour dates below!

Thu. 3/7- Conne Island Skatepark in Leipzig, Germany

Fri. 3/8- Melkweg in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Sat. 3/9- Muziekodroom in Hasselt, Belgium

Sun. 3/10- Musigburg in Aarburg, Switzerland

Mon. 3/11- Backstage Concerts in Munchen, Germany

Tue. 3/12- Z-Bau in Nord, Germany

Wed. 3/13- turock in E, Germany

Thu. 3/14- SO 36 in Berlin, Germany

Fri. 3/15- Kronensaal in Eggenstein-leopaldshafen, Germany

Sat. 3/16- Fabrik in Hamburg, Germany

Fri. 4/5- Cherry Street in Wallingford, Connecticut

Sun. 5/19- Brooklyn Bazaar in Brooklyn, New York

Thu. 5/30- The Rec Room in Buffalo, New York

For tickets and further information on any of the gigs listed above, click here.

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