BRING ME THE HORIZON's OLI SYKES: 'We Can't Be The Band That We Used To Be'
August 7, 2023
In a new interview with the Tucson, Arizona radio station KFMA, vocalist Oli Sykes of British rockers BRING ME THE HORIZON spoke about how he feels about those fans who think the band's more recent musical output has veered too far away from BRING ME THE HORIZON's early metalcore sound. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I think I've managed over recent years to soften my approach to what those… It's very easy for them people to piss you off and you're just, like, 'Fuck off.' But at the end of the day they just love your band and something you did meant so much to them that they just want you to do it again. And you've just gotta realize that even though it might annoy you, it comes from a place of love. And rather than fighting back, you've just gotta appreciate that and appreciate the fact that… and sometimes maybe it even makes you question yourself as well.
"To a certain degree, we can't be the band that we used to be," he continued. "We wouldn't know how to do it, and we wouldn't know how to do it with any authenticity or integrity. Because we grow and we age and we mature and our tastes change, the same like the way your taste buds change; it just does, and there's nothing you can do about that. But sometimes those people can remind you, like, 'Wait. Are we losing what makes us special?' And that's what I've asked myself over the years. It's, like, some people that are sad because we're not as heavy anymore or whatever, do they have a point?
"There's not many bands like BRING ME THE HORIZON anymore that are in the kind of mainstream stuff," Sykes added. "And sometimes you almost wanna con… not conform, but sometimes, like our band, 10 years ago [I never would have thought] that anyone would've ever said our band are gonna headline festivals one day or that could be the biggest rock band in the world. And then, all of a sudden, those kind of ideas started formulating and people saying them. And that can go to your head, and then you can start going, 'Oh, maybe we can.' And sometimes you get so preoccupied whether you could that you don't stop to think whether you should. And I definitely feel like I've listened to some of the fans over the years and, like, you know what? They're right. We shouldn't water our shit down. Because we're like one of the last bands that still do heavy music right. So all that stuff just keeps you in line, and you've just gotta realize it all comes from a place of love and don't let it piss you off. And at the same time stay true to yourself. We can't write music for the fans; it's impossible. But we can let what they say resonate with us and not just automatically, like, knee-jerk reaction of like, 'Fuck you. We'll do what we want.'"
BRING ME THE HORIZON will release its seventh full-length studio album, "Post Human: NeX GEn", on September 15 via Columbia Records. The LP will continue the band's "Post Human" series, which began with the 2020 EP "Post Human: Survival Horror".
Two months ago, Sykes told NME about "Post Human: NeX GEn": "LINKIN PARK were the first band that I got into, but when I found GLASSJAW is when I became obsessed with music and knew I wanted to be a singer, so the album pays homage to that."
He continued: "I wouldn't say it's a hyper-pop album, but I've definitely been inspired by that world. I admire how obnoxious, trashy and in your face that music feels, which is what I was drawn to when I got into emo, hardcore and screamo.
"It's not that we've lost that in our music, but as you become a bigger band, things do get more polished. I want to go the opposite way. Let's be unhinged, let's stop trying to make all the edges smooth."
The frontman went on to explain how "the hope is that this record is pure fun" with "no limits on how or what we want to express."
"There's no, 'That song could be played on the radio if we don't scream,'" he revealed. "It's almost like we’re connecting to that time before BRING ME THE HORIZON had any prospects of being a big band. Back then, there was never anything but, 'What do you want to make?' — so we're trying to tap back into that."
BRING ME THE HORIZON is Sykes, guitarist Lee Malia, bassist Matt Kean, drummer Mat Nicholls, and keyboardist Jordan Fish.
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