Brand of Sacrifice Guitarist Explains Band’s Relationship with Fans, Why They Won’t Do a Livestream Concert
Brand of Sacrifice guitarist Michael Leo Valeri was our guest on a recent episode of The MetalSucks Podcast to discuss the band’s new album, Lifeblood, the various guest spots on the album (members of I Prevail, Emmure, Shadow of Intent, Traitors and Viscera), the chemistry of writing the record with so much distance between band members, their plans to tour endlessly when live shows return, and more.
Michael spoke at length about the band’s accessibility to fans, arguing that presenting themselves as relatable people has been more beneficial than the mysterious air some bands keep about themselves. He explained:
“That whole idea of mystery and mysticism [in bands and their members] has been a thing for a long time. I don’t know if my band members would agree with me but I personally think that isn’t always the right approach for a growing band. People want to know who you are and people want to know that you care more than they ever have before. There’s been a big shift in the industry that way.
“I think for Brand, we sort of had this boots-on-the-ground approach that’s worked for us because we’ve been able to say like, ‘Hey, you know, we’re super glad you like our music but you don’t necessarily have to put your favorite bands up on a pedestal. We’re just like you, we like to talk, we like to form relationships,’ things like that. So I think, you know, especially for a growing band like us and other bands in our position, it’s been super important not to be mysterious in that sense.
“Maybe [we can] be a little more mysterious when it comes to putting out releases and putting out music videos. We put out this really compelling trailer, almost like a movie trailer where you didn’t really know what was going to happen when the song was released. And then when it came out it was met with great reception, and I think that sort of mysticism played a roll in that.
“But we always try to keep it personal and make that connection with our fans on a different level rather than sort of pull away and be mysterious and whatnot.”
Michael also explained why the band won’t be doing any livestream concerts, instead waiting it out until real touring returns:
“We actually were planning something like that last year, but once we started hearing stuff about the vaccines and all that we kinda thought maybe we just wait it out. It seems like it’s kind of getting a little oversaturated, everybody’s doing it now. And I think we want our next live show, whenever it’s going to be, we want that to be really special ’cause it’s kind of going to be a comeback show with these brand new songs, new image, new sound. I don’t think we want it to get lost in the noise. Not saying that bands shouldn’t do it or it’s not special, because I think it’s awesome that bands are doing it. But I don’t know… also it makes it hard because we would probably film it here in the States and it’s impossible to coordinate that right now.”