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Interview: The Grym Sins
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
I got into music in my teens, around 15. I would help my dad out at his business, and he would always be playing a classic rock radio station while we worked. During this time, we were also renovating our house, and we had cleared out our attic. Out of the pile of junk we had throughout the house, I had found a Squire Strat and a practice combo amp, and decided to pick it up. Had I not gotten into music, I would’ve likely have tried to pursue a career in computer science. Computers have always fascinated me and little me always wanted to make programs.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
When we aren’t on the road, I like to travel quite a bit. Every summer I go camping with my family, and being out in the woods inspires a lot of the lyrics and songs I write. That’s how songs like “Turn Me to Stone” and on of our new songs “Thrown to the Wolves” came to be.
How long has your band been around?
We’ve been a group since 2019! We were under a different name called Krymzen and we were a cover band at the start. Since then, we rebranded, started writing a lot of music, and started really putting ourselves out there in the world.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
We’re out of the Mountain Mama West Virginia! Specifically from Morgantown. There’s a lot of great bands in West Virginia that we find ourselves influenced by when we write our own stuff. Bands like Ducain, Truckstop, and a lot of other crazy good bands that are almost solely local to our area.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
When we rebranded, we sat down as a group and just ran ideas with eachother. There ended up being two categories of names, completely new names and names based off of Krymzen. Our final decision ended up being the latter, with The Grym Sins being the final name. To us, our name is very telling of what you’re going to be listening to from the band. We actually joke when we songwrite that we have two types of songs, Grym songs (Golden Headstone, Turn Me to Stone) and Sins songs (Miss Sunshine, Downpour, Like to Know).
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Two shows that immediately come to mind are the first time we played 123 Pleasant Street here in Morgantown and when we played at The Metropolitan Theatre, also in Morgantown. 123 was an insane show, we opened up for an Atlanta band called Fury in Few, and turn out was great. At one point the crowd actually sang back the chorus to “Miss Sunshine”, which was a huge moment for all of us. The Met was a great show too, great production, really fun set, the whole nine yards. It was also our first experience with a medium-to-large scale venue, and having such an energy-fueled show was great for all of us.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
Right now, our favorite venue has to be this place called The Rim in Norton, WV. It’s in the basement of a house, and they throw the most insane concerts we’ve ever played. There’s a packed crowd every show, and the closeup atmosphere is so much fun for us. We’re wanting to hit some venues on the east coast. The Broadberry, Rams Head Live, and Mr. Small’s Theater are some of the places we’d like to hit up on tour.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
Oooh that’s a tough one. Each one of us definitely has our own different answers, but for me I know my answer. I would love to play shows on tour with some of the newer bands in the rock scene like Rival Sons and Dirty Honey, those guys are some of my top influences in my own music. All of us can also agree that we would love to play with Crobot, those guys are insane.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Rehearse! You always want to give 110% at your shows, and it’s hard to do that if not everyone is on the same page. Also, for those starting out, make as many friends as possible! Networking and getting to know people in your area is huge for bands starting out, plus it leaves you in pretty good company.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
Practice more! I’ve always been practicing and improving my voice as much as I can, but if I had the chance to talk to my younger self when I first started singing I would push myself to practice more. There’s still so many things I want to learn and try out in my own music, and I’d want to introduce myself to those things earlier on.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
That would have to be “Golden Headstone”. This was the very first song we wrote as a band, and still holds up as both a crowd and band favorite. It holds a special place in my heart as the start to what we’ve eventually become.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
Personally, my favorite song to play is “Miss Sunshine”. It’s a fun song for a band and it’s the one I get to solo over! Our most requested song, especially with our local crowds, has to be “Golden Headstone”.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
Usually, our guitarist Billy and I will come up with ideas and bring them to eachother. From there, I write the melodies and vocals, and kind of come up with bass and drum ideas for Daniel and John. Then, we introduce the song to them, and from there they pick it apart and totally rewrite it! I actually end up enjoying the final song more than what I had previously written.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
There’s all kinds of messages I like to convey in they stuff I write, some of which I’m still trying to figure out myself. In a lot of our songs, I like to tell stories, especially in a lot of our Grym songs. Songs like “Turn Me to Stone” and “Golden Headstone” tell a story of a person, or thing, and I for those songs I try to work it in ways where even the lyrics read like a story.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
Of course! Every band has their disagreements, whether about business or creative process or anything else. I’m extremely lucky and grateful to have bandmates that I can also call my close friends, so when we disagree on things it’s easier to work through because we all understand each other. Anytime something comes up, we sit and decide on a compromise that can make everyone happy, and it has worked for us consistently over the past few years.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
We’re actually wrapping up the rest of the recording for our debut EP! We have a release date planned later this summer, as well as a tour that kicks off on the day of release. We’re extremely excited to be putting this new material out into the world, and we’re hoping our fans and new listeners dig it!