Things have changed a lot for progressive metal stalwarts Between The Buried and Me over the last 20 years. From humble beginnings writing riffs in an apartment in North Carolina to being one of the most revered and influential bands in heavy music around the world, the band has spent two decades continually pushing themselves and setting the standard for those around them.
Vocalist Tommy Rogers says that the band is still as hungry as ever to push their boundaries and avoid the pitfall that is becoming a legacy band.
“I think a hungry is the perfect word for it,” he says. “I think a lot of bands turn into legacy bands because they just kind of find a flow that works really well for them and they just kind of do it over and over or they branch away from their sound for a second and the reaction from the fan base is not what they hope. I don't think we've really got caught up in that. I think we all are kind of striving to find something more exciting for us.
“We still really enjoy the writing process and I think a lot of bands begin to not enjoy it. For me, personally that’s still one of my favourite parts and I can’t speak for everyone but I feel like we still haven’t written that record we’re trying to write. I hope that we’ll always have that fire and hopefully we’re always trying to find that album that we want to write that we haven’t yet.”
To celebrate their 20th anniversary, Between The Buried and Me are embarking on a very special ‘An Evening With’ tour which sees the band play over two hours of material featuring older tracks that haven’t seen their live show in years and deep cuts that have never been played live before. Rogers admits that building this career spanning set and bringing it to life was quite the daunting task.
“It's definitely one of those things that you talk about and you get really excited about and then when it comes down to actually doing it, you realise the amount of work that goes into it and just the amount of abuse physically you're about to put on your body every night. When you're used to playing you going an hour, an hour 20 tops, and then pushing that up to two hours plus. I think that was the main thing that took a lot of getting used to.”
20 years is no mean feat for any band and Between The Buried and Me have certainly not taken this milestone lightly in the slightest. Rogers says that staring down the barrel of 20 years as a band has been put a lot of things into perspective and filled the members with excitement and motivation for the future.
“When I think back to Paul and I living together, writing riffs in our apartment when we were 18/19 years old for that first record. It's crazy to revisit it and just kind of think of our mindset and how he approached music then compared to now. We're obviously a lot more grown up now and it’s just kind of cool to see how we’ve grown, both musically and in our personal lives. At the end of the day we're just very lucky that we're still here and that was the thing that I think we needed when we did the European tour.
“It kind of kicked us in the ass a little bit and told us “don't take us for granted”. We're lucky that we get to do this. I think that tour really motivated us for the future and just to be excited that we're still doing this after all these years. I think anybody in a band has moments where they kind of unknowingly start to take things for granted or not treat things as precious as they should be treated. So, I think that was good for us.”
Between The Buried And Me are taking their ‘An Evening With’ shows around Australia this month. Head to Live Nation for tickets today.