Music News caught up with Sacramento metal-heroes Will Haven half way through their current UK tour. The band kindly spared us twenty minutes before their headline show in at London’s Islington Academy and we pointed some questions to them:
Jeff Jaworski – vocals
Jeff Irwin – guitar
Mike Martin – bass
Mitch Wheeler – drums
Music News: Kev: Hi guys, so how has the tour been going so far?
Mitch Wheeler: Pretty well I think. We are like 5 or 6 shows in now. We played in Cardiff last night and that went well. We had between 150 and 200 kids in there screaming their heads off. I think that has been the coolest night yet. We have a pretty cool support band [The mirimar disaster] on tour with us, they have been playing some good sets.
MN: Last time you guys were in the UK you were playing with Crowbar at bigger venues, are you more at home in these slightly smaller places?
Jeff Irwin: Yeah, we like the intimate venues, you are closer to the crowd and get a lot better vibe from everyone. Last night was a perfect example of that.
MN: So was it hard for you to replace Grady and carry on touring, especially after ten or eleven years together?
Mitch Wheeler: If we wanted anyone to replace Grady it would always have been Jeff. He has been in our ‘family’ now for a long time. The first time we jammed with Jeff we all looked at each other with jaws wide open. We knew he was the one to do the job. Jeff actually sounds a lot like Grady you know. We knew Will Haven were back, almost like a second rise or incarnation of the band.
MN: So Jeff, have you had a lot of input into the new album then?
Jeff Jaworski: Yeah, Grady had done some rough vocals for a few of the tracks but I added my own stamp onto them. I re-wrote some of the words. We also re-worked some of the music.
MN: Shaun Lopez [ex-Far] produced the new album, how was it working with Shaun?
Mitch Wheeler: Shaun is a real workhorse, we were like working late into each night. Shaun gave us a lot of advice, ideas and input though. He was really into the music and what we were doing which really helped a lot. Chino [Deftones] also had a lot of input and co-produced some of the album.
MN: With Chino and Shaun working with you guys is it safe to say that the Sacramento scene is still thriving?
Mitch Wheeler: Not really anymore. We obviously know Shaun and Chino well but band wise it is different. It use to be really good, you could go to any club and see different bands, good bands. Things have changed now though, it is not like it use to be.
MN: So you still obviously have the drive and enthusiasm to carry on with this? A lot of other hardcore bands do not appear to have that staying power.
Mitch Wheeler: We are never going to be rich from this we all have jobs back home to pay the rent. We could probably access some money from some kind of publishing deal or small royalties but that is not huge you know. First and foremost it has always been about being on the stage playing music, that is an awesome feeling. We get flown over to the UK and Europe and get to see some cool places as well.
MN: Thanks for your time guys and have a good gig.
Mitch Wheeler: No worries, I hope you both enjoy the show!
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