The Disengage 7″ has an exclusive track on it in Japan right?
We just put it on the seven inch just for Japan for Alliance Trax.
Alliance-Trax can you tell us about it and how they’ve been helping you out?
We met Daki who does Alliance-Trax, or we didn’t meet him at first but he sent Jefery from Run For Cover an email talking about licensing The Last Thing You Forget and it was right around the same time he offered us to come over with H20. We knew Daki through some of our mutual friends cause he’s done so many records for American bands. All of our friends bands that came over here and knew Daki. They told us he’s a good guy, you should trust him, he’s cool and he does a cool label. We put out The Last Thing You Forget and then right after that we came over with H20 since then we’ve been in touch with him and we see what they put out and he just did the Disengage record that i’m involved in, Shane and Ben are also involved in. He’s just an awesome guy. Daki’s the man and he brings over so many cool bands. He does so much for the Japan hardcore scene and he just has a good head on his shoulders. He’s a really cool guy.
They got Cold World coming out and Backtrack at the end of the month and Nails too from California.
Yeah thats real cool.
This is your second time out here right?, the first time you guys came with H20 how was that?
Yeah … that was September 2010 … that was awesome that was cool. I don’t know how to explain it. It was our first time coming I didn’t know what to expect. So, it was just crazy. There could have been no one there it would of been insane for us. So, just the fact there was a lot of people there mainly to see H20 but it was so cool for us but this time were doing a lot more sight seeing stuff and im really excited about that it’s a lot of fun.
Sights in Japan where do you plan on going?
We hit up the buddhist temple in Nara and that was awesome. H20 went last time and they came back and told us about it and we had no idea what it was or anything so, we wanted to head over there cause last time we didn’t get to do any stuff in the country or anything. So it was real cool to see that side of Japan that we didn’t get to see before. We went to Osaka Castle and stuff like that. I dont know the rest of the time were spending kind of in and around of Tokyo. So just kind of go anywhere we can. We don’t got a specific kind plan were just trying to see some stuff that we can’t …
Ben was saying it’s hard for a lot of people to travel and get out of town. How is it going across the States going to Japan and Europe?
It’s a trip, you know it’s real crazy. It’s something I never really expected us to do you know. I’ve always wanted to play in a band since I can remember. My older brother is seven years older than me and he’s always been in a band. Its kind of something I grew up with. I always knew I’d play music and I’d be in a band but never once did I think that we would tour the states or even get to Europe or Japan or anything, Australia. It’s Crazy to have this opportunity it’s so awesome for us. We travel with our best friends, we get to see so many cool places, we get to meet so many cool people, hear so many cool bands, it’s hard to put into words how much this means to us and how much fun we can have doing this. This is just such a cool opportunity. You know if you have the opportunity to go out with your friends and play music I recommend to anyone. It’s really cool, it’s so much fun and we’re really thankful.
Wilkes-Barre scene, Kingston, how do you feel thats going right now
I feel like everyone is listening to all the bands that are coming out United Youth, Dead End Path …
Yeah, it’s weird we were just having this conversation with Foundation the other day. People who aren’t from Wilkes-Barre talk about Wilkes-Barre. I think they got this idea in their head it’s a major city like its a New York or Philadelphia. It’s literally this little suburban town. You know like a good show in Wilkes-Barre will be like a hundred kids. You know like a great show will be two hundred kids it’s nothing you know. Its nothing really that crazy. We have a lot of kids that are stoked on hardcore. We have a lot of awesome bands and I think the biggest thing is that people just really care about it. We went from having things like Posi Numbers Fest, Walk All Night Records, and Captain Metropolis and all these great things that were so cool and really kind of paved the way for our generation of kids to literally having nothing. To Venues closing, Posi Numbers Fest got shut down, Walk All Night stopped doing records. We went from having this great scene to literally being fifteen years old and being oh I guess we kind of have to do something now. Having to kind of realize that made us want to do it that much more. Everything that we have we have worked hard to get and i’m really proud we have our own venue now. Back to Back is putting out records for all bands from Wilkes-Barre. It’s a really cool time to be from Wilkes-Barre.
It’s cool for me coming to shows in Japan and seeing people wearing United Youth and Stick Together merch.
Yeah i’ve seen a couple Stick Together sweatshirts the past couple of nights. It’s fucking awesome, I don’t even know where they get this shit you know. The fact that people are just paying attention to it and are excited about it, that’s so fucking cool.
You guys are going to be playing Warped Tour, correct?
Yeah, we’re doing that all summer.
Any chance of being on Sound and Fury this year?
Uhhh, it doesn’t look like it. Warped Tour is all summer long, it would be kind of a shot in the dark if we were around the same time and all that stuff.
Do you think your going to bring on a new audience by playing Warped Tour?
I don’t know? I mean I guess thats the whole idea of those kind of things. Play to a lot of people who never heard of you and hopefully the come out when we come around town on our own and they’ll come check us out. Hopefully we get some new kids at the shows, that would be cool but if nobody likes us and we go over a fart in church then whatever.
Your guys side projects like Disengage and Bad Seed, will we ever be seeing anything put out in the future, shows, or more stuff?
Yeah, Bad Seed is pretty much done I don’t think that would be coming back. Disengage just put out a record and we’re trying to play some shows.You know thats just more of a when we could do it kind of thing. Hoodracks in the band from Stick Together and he lives forty five minutes away from us with out a car so it’s hard to practice. So we try to do that when we can but that’s just more of my personal fun thing. We always kind of get home get bored and start new bands. There will definitely be new experi-bands that involve any one of us. It’s hard to sit home and not want to go over our practice space and jam with our friends. That’s kind of what happens all the time and then well do a demo or a record and kind of take it from there. It will definitely happen but theres not to many plans right now.
Around this time last year I was in California for the Triple B weekend tour and saw Disengage, Free Spirit, and Minority Unit. How was it playing with those bands?You guys also played the Triple B Showcase?
It’s awesome! Free Spirit is one of my favorite current hardcore band. I love them a lot. I loved the band before I knew the dudes really. We went to Boston to see their first show and I already met Gil and Ken maybe once and I kind of re-met them. They had a bunch of reline up changes, I kind of came close friends with those dudes too. It’s just cool to be able to play shows with your friends especially Disengage cause that’s something to me. I write all the stuff to that and to me thats kind of me being me and it’s cool to go out with my friends who I love to see and play music seeing kids go off and stuff. That’s really cool. It’s also fun to not be so serious with it and be like alright lets play three shows in California and loose a bunch of money and not give a fuck. That’s cool you know to be doing that with our friend’s band is a lot of fun.
Thats what it seemed like. I saw Manny Mare’s pictures and you guys were just chilling in Hollywood having great times.
Especially for the guys in Free Spirit because they rarely go on tour. They have real jobs and are in school and do all this shit. The fact that we got them to go with us is awesome and they were so stoked to go and see California and stuff. It kind of sucks because we tour a lot and get to see the country all the time and you know sometimes were like “awhh we’re in California again”. I don’t want to feel like that, so when we go with people were like “oh theres the Superman guy or whatever in front of the theater” it’s cool to see that and it’s cool to see people excited and that gets me excited.It’s always fun experiences.
You guys have been real busy, you guys did a tour last year with Touche Amore around the states.
Yeah we did like five or six weeks with Touche, The Menzingers, and Dead End Path. Then we went right to Europe a few more times and then we went to Australia and then back to Europe.
Yeah, from May until December we were on tour with maybe the most of the time being at home for two to three weeks. It was a lot of getting out there and playing, you know that’s what you want to do and i’m not complaining. We got to see a lot. We went to Australia for the first time and Europe a lot and that was cool. We went to Spain for the first time and did a lot of cool shit.
You guys played in Europe with Basement?
Yeah, that was cool. We’ve known those guys for a while we actually met Fisher and Alex when they were over in the States on vacation. They were over with their family and they just got away from their family for two days and came with us. They sent us a Myspace message or something like “Hey, we’re fans of yours from England or something. We’re coming to Bromley, North Carolina and just want to say hi.” Ok, they came and asked “Do you know how we can get to the next show in Richmond?” Yeah, sure hop in the van and since then we knew those guys and told us about their band. It was called something different at the time and we went over there. They played for the first time it was with Polar Bear Club. They were on most of the shows in the UK and so we heard them and when we went back we were like yeah we should tour with Basement. That was cool to do that.
Any current bands your listening to? Ourside, New Brigade…
Ourside is fucking sweet. Yeah Ourside’s awesome. I just actually got an e-mail from their singer. When Disengage was playing up in Boston last weekend and we put Ourside on there. Dude just e-mailed me and was talking to him and their playing Warped Tour which is real cool. The New Brigade demo is real cool. I think United Youth is writing new songs, I fucking love them and they’re great. Uriah from Dead End Path is telling me he’s starting a new band. The new Gypsy record is coming out soon and that’s fucking awesome. Preorders for that went up a little big ago.
How about Clear?
Yeah! I just saw Clear in DC they were cool. Pat told me they were gonna finish up their demo soon. There’s a lot of good bands right now. It’s cool, i’m bad at thinking on the spot but there’s a lot of cool bands hardcore or not right now.
Do you have a favorite Southern California band do you like to tour and hang out with?
I like the Soul Search guys a lot, they’re cool. We always chill with those guys when were in California. Even if its for a day or something you know. Those guys are cool and I don’t know. Rotting Out guys are real nice. Alpha and Omega have been our friends for a real long time and we haven’t played with them in a while but we always chill with them. I’m sure i’m forgetting so many people right now, people are going to be mad at me.
Any last things you’d like to talk about? shout outs? anything about Japan?
Japan is fucking awesome! I love it!
Had any good foods or anything?
Monsua, Beef Bowl.
Have you had CoCos yet?
Nah, CoCos Curry? yeah I saw that. I haven’t eaten that yet. Japan’s awesome. I love it. The kids are so excited about music and they go off and they’re real cool. Anyone who has the opportunity to travel with their friends go play music, be in a band or anything just fucking take it. This is awesome, we’re happy to do it and it’s for everybody. You don’t need to be a somebody to do this. You can be a fucking idiot who doesn’t know how to tune your guitar and you can make it to Japan. Just start bands and go on tour.
I appreciate you guys coming to Japan because not a lot of bands come and when they do they get a good response.
Yeah, that’s what seems so crazy it sucks feeling so spoiled. I feel any tour thats going on in the states I can see pretty easily. Two hours from New York, two hours from Philly. When we travel, when we go to Australia and Japan these kids don’t get to see the bands that we get to see all the time and I feel bad for them cause I get to see these bands maybe once every three months or something and they get to see them maybe once a year. Sometimes a lot of the bands they’ll never get to see and I feel like when American bands make it to Japan or where ever kids get so stoked and I think thats awesome. That’s more happy that we get to make other people that we’re coming to their town.
Your guys tour, you guys are going all over Japan just looking at the dates. They’re all so fucking far from each other.
Yeah, it’s awesome it’s so far in Japan but like this is nothing compared to touring the States. I think our longest drive was five hours we did that today and thats probably the shortest drive that we have back in the states. So, this is leisure, I like this a lot. We’re not busting our ass having to drive over the night and worry about that. It’s cool and get to the city and see what it’s like and hang out, look around and stop along the way. It’s really fucking cool and a great way to tour
Did you happen to check out the Revelation Showcase lineup at the Glasshouse?
Yeah, it’s cool. There was so many rumors floating around going around before that. I don’t want to say was a let down but I was expecting something different. I think that would definitely be cool. I don’t think we will be able to make it out for that, I would like to but we may be tied up at that time doing some new record shit. To see Gorilla Biscuits two or three nights, I would love to see Youth of Today. I fucking love Youth of Today. Hopefully they do something like that on the east coast, I could make it to that a lot easier. That’s really fucking cool Rev’s my favorite label. They’ve done so much in the past thats made me who I am as a person, with the bands they’ve put out and their style. That really resinated me a lot when I was getting into hardcore and it’s still important to me and I really like it and its fucking cool. I love Rev anything they do i’ll be down with.
Based on all these social media websites what do you think is the most misunderstood perception that one would think of yourself?
Hah, the internet is a funny place. Haters run ballistic, especially in the goofy realm of Tumblr. I honestly cannot speak on any certain misconception, because most of my ‘hatred’ just passes right by. I always found it weird when I found out people were like, ‘oh my god blah blah I saw you today’. I never understood that concept. I would consider myself rather approachable, so if you see me skateboarding or at a show… go ahead and say hello!
What is photography to you? A hobby, a job, possibly a career, something you do for fun …… ?
Honestly, all of the above. Started as a hobby, now definitely a viable career opportunity. Had I ever planned things would go this way? Absolutely not. Am I grateful and incredibly overwhelmed with my peak in interest/progression/exposure? You would not even believe.
Photography will always be my passion. Let’s see what the future has in store for me…
“This is your last warning … I want to send some thanks to…all our friends who have supported us thus far, Julian Berman” – Ourside, Boston Mass. It seems you’ve been real close with a lot of bands, independent clothing companies, and people who run awesome labels. Those of Soul Search, Title Fight, Back to Back Records, Expire, Disengage, Dead End Path, Twitching Tongues, Triple B Records just to name a few. How is it meeting people locally in Los Angeles at shows and even from around the country based on common interests of music and sharing alike lifestyles?
I absolutely love meeting new people. I will certainly have to thank the internet for part of that, though. It is crazy to think that I can travel across the country, and have a solid place to stay, or a tour guide. Even going to a show in a completely different state and seeing dozens of kids that I know and recognize constantly blows my mind. In essence, it is incredibly refreshing to have an expansive, yet tight knit niche all across the country. Both hardcore and street wear are great communities, and I am so shocked with places they have taken me.
Back to Our Side, how was the trip up to Boston and New York City?
Both Boston and New York were incredible. The Triple B showcase in Haverhill, MA was one of the coolest show I have ever been to. Such AMAZING sets from Free Spirit, Stick Together, Our Side, Soul Search, Beware, United Youth.. everybody killed it. It was also so cool to see a ton of friends that live thousands of miles away, and of course meet a lot of new people. New York was a great experience as well. It had been years since I last encompassed the city, so it was a treat to be back. Just walking, exploring, and shooting was such a blast. Nearing the end of my trip I was definitely getting a bit homesick, but that tends to always happen.
With works being featured and upcoming for Stussy, Uncropped Magazine, XXL Magazine, Soul Search Bury the Blame 7″ cover, books, making Prints and more. Did you always think that your photos were going to be viewed and gain as much attention that they have?
Honestly, I would have never expected to ever be published. I suppose I just met the right people and remained persistent. Like really, shooting album and magazine covers? That sounded completely unreal, say two or three years ago… but it has since become a sudden reality, and I cannot be more grateful and proud of my accomplishments. I am excited to see what future projects happen to pave way.
How is it working with other photographers such as Bryant Eslava and Alvin Carillo?
Meeting Terry Richardson must have been rad. Are there any other photographers you’d like to meet or do collaborations with?
Bryant and Alvin are two great friends of mine. It is always refreshing to shoot and hang with somebody that not only shares common interest, but is also extremely talented and extremely motivated. Both Alvin and Bryant are killing it right now, be on the look out. There are so many talented individuals that I know just through the Tumblr/Internet Photography grapevine that I would love to link up and shoot with, but that means I must get back to globetrotting. I would love to go overseas, Australia seems to be my calling as of late.
Project wise, there are so many that are in the works. Another shirt with Phil (Dertbag), collaborative project with Alysha Nett, feature work in a little art journal Elizabeth Weinberg has in the works, and hopefully…. ONE DAY…. JUST ONE DAY…. have my own Camerbag.tv feature.
If you could choose to have a photo sesh with any group,artist, model or whoever. Who would it be and why?
Zooey Deschanel, come to daddy. It has always been a dream of mine to shoot MF Doom as well, that dude was my life prior to getting into hardcore. Really though, just being able to shoot some of my favorite bands would be amazing.
Do you plan on going to Coachella ?
I am going to begin working on my ticket situation, now that it is sold out… but I would LOVE to go. To be able to shoot Refused, Pulp, Madness, At The Drive In, and Frank live would be out of this world. (That is, if I actually get a photo pass this year… shouts to LA Weekly for screwing me over last year — kiss my ass)
How about any other shows or bands that you’re looking forward to seeing ?
So many amazing shows are getting posted lately. I am convinced that 2012 is the year of reunions. Breakdown in Texas, Gorilla Biscuits/Youth of Today/Underdog in California, United Blood in Richmond. Chaos In Tejas is really calling my name though, and I definitely have never been to Texas before.. so that shall be a treat. Oh yeah, and any New Brigade gig is pretty much perfection – coolest band.
What does Julian Berman have up his sleeves for everyone following him this year?
I honestly do not know what to expect anymore. I just would like to keep exploring, shooting various subjects, various mediums, and learn about various processes and techniques. I just went back to school for Photography and am having a blast with that. I would love to travel a lot more this year as well. Let’s see what the future has in store for me.
Shouts to the Our Side Tribe, New Brigade Explorers Club, all of my family on Fairfax, and Marc at Mel Pierce Camera for performing immediate surgery on my Mamiya 7, reviving my baby from the dead. – peace