Interview With Hard Echo's Mark Arrington
San Diego, California is home to many intriguing metal acts today, but I dare say that Hard Echo is one of its most well rounded and technically sound, featuring Mark Arrington on vocals, Tony Jenkins and Tim Bailleul on guitars, with Norm Campbell on Bass. Though they are currently looking for a competent double bass drummer, this is a metal act that is ready for a bright future ahead and the thousands of screaming fans that await their old school progressive metal attack. I was able to recently get some questions in with their extremely gifted lead singer.
Rocket: When did you first get into singing? And did you ever take vocal lessons?
Mark: I first started singing when I was about 12 yrs. old. I never took formal lessons. I taught myself to sing through thousands of hours studying - and singing along with Maiden, Priest, Sabbath, Zeppelin, etc.
Rocket: Right on. What three metal vocalists of past or present have played the biggest influence on your approach?
Mark: Dickinson, Halford and Ozzy.
Rocket: So how did Hard Echo originally hook up as a band?
Mark: I found my band through San Diego's Reader magazine.
Rocket: I know Hard Echo's debut CD Traded Secrets was released independently in 2004. You guys are currently working on your new follow-up CD, "Mouth of the Sun". What can we expect from that one?
Mark: A heavier, more pissed off approach, haha.
Rocket: Well, that'd be the answer were all certainly hoping for. So where is it being recorded and exactly how many tracks will there be?
Mark: 10 tracks. We're recording it with Jeff Forrest at Doubletime studios in El Cajon CA. Jeff has worked with tons of great bands from Metal acts like Cattle Decapitation, to alternative bands like Incubus and Blink 182. We highly recommend him!
Rocket: Dude, this a metal page. Did you have to go and mention Blink 182? There just went my audience. Ha! So has Hard Echo been approached by any record labels?
Mark: Yeah, we've been approached by a couple of Indie labels, but we haven't signed with anyone yet.
Rocket:. Who are some of the indie labels out there that you respect?
Mark: Anyone who does what they say they'll do.
Rocket: Don't gold your breath. Hahaha. What metal band today would be your biggest dream to open for? And why?
Mark: Iron Maiden. In the liner notes of our "Traded Secrets" album we thank Maiden for laying the blueprint for integrity. With Maiden what you see is what you get, incredible musicians, awesome songwriting, and a live show that's always guaranteed to kick your fuckin' ass. Up the Bloody Irons!!!
Rocket: Oh yeah. I was there at Number of The Beasts tour 1982 at the Santa Monica Civic auditorium here in California. I'd like to read in the comments below how many of these other kids were. Guess what? Not gonna happen! Do you answer all of your fan mail on Myspace or is really not something you're into?
Mark: We try our best to answer and correspond with our fans in every way.
Rocket: What was your favorite metal album of 2005?
Mark: I like anything that's good.
Rocket: I'm just praying that doesn't include Blink 182, for crying out loud. Just a little joke! Moving right along, what's the funniest thing that's ever happened to you on stage?
Mark: We're very focused during our shows, nothing really funny comes to mind.
Rocket: Yeah, but this is heavy metal. Have you ever seen Spinal Tap? Oh well, forgive me. So I recently watched Hard Echo's first produced video for the song Mouth Of The Sun. I thought it was really well done for the obvious low budget that was used. Are you guys going to do another one anytime soon?
Mark:. Thanks, we did the whole thing for around six hundred bucks, it's posted on our site @ hardecho.com and myspace.com/hardecho Click on Videos. Yeah, we'll do another one once the album is done.
Rocket: What are some of the upcoming Hard Echo Shows we need to be watching out for?
Mark: We're doing a two day Metal Festival with Helstar and a bunch of other bands in Southern California this summer.
Rocket: Very cool. I have to say I certainly want to see this band live. Thanks for taking some time to cover ground with us, Mark. Go ahead and give a shout out to your biggest supporters?
Mark: To all of our fans around the world. We're going to make you all proud, and hopefully see you on tour soon!!!
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