Interview With ‘Jake Luhrs’ [August Burns Red] + Video Testimony


Jake Dennings from Absolutepunk recently interviewed Jake Luhrs of the band August Burns Red. A part of the interview you can read below. And check out the video with Jake‘s testimony: Jake shares of how God first encountered him and began changing his life.

Jumping into things, you guys played the mainstage at last summer’s Warped Tour, played A Day To Remember’s U.K. headliner with The Ghost Inside and Living With Lions near the end of the year. You’re currently on a U.S. headliner on your own; what are your thoughts on your summer on the Warped Tour and ADTR’s tour?

Warped Tour was alot of fun, it definitely was stoked to be a part of that. Warped Tour is always a vacation in a sense for bands, but it’s always alot of hard work; we met a lot of fans, and made a lot of new fans as well. 

We just got back a few months ago from the tour with A Day to Remember, we were main support for them, and that was a really good tour. Europe can be up and down, sometimes for me personally; I like the kids there, but i’m not completely into the environment so much, sometimes the culture. But the tour was great, the kids came out; I love A Day To Remember, I love touring with those guys.

Headlining now is pretty exciting; sometimes lots more kids coming out to our shows than I had previously anticipated. The bands on this tour — Silverstein, Texas In July, and I, The Breather; they’re all good friends of ours, so it’s sortof like a family reunion of sorts.

Speaking of A Day To Remember, you’ve toured with that band quite a bit over the years — Warped, a couple of their headliners, etc. Some people might call their authenticity into play, as they continue getting larger; being someone who has lots and lots of exposure to the band, what would you say to someone who might accuse that band of being unauthentic?

You know, I definitely think they’re original, I think they’re catchy; their songwriting is definitely more I guess formulaic than alot of the other bands in the genre. And I think because of that, alot of other bands or critics go “Oh, you ripped those guys off” or “You sound like this”, but I don’t necessarily see that; because when I listen to A Day To Remember, I’ll be singing along, or there’s a catchy chorus stuck in my head, it’s A Day To Remember to me — i’m not singing something that A Day To Remember is singing and thinking “oh, that sounds alot like this”. I guess at the end of the day it’s personal opinions, but I don’t think they’re unauthentic. If they were unauthentic, I don’t think they’d be where they are today.

And I don’t think it’s absolutely terrible to be formulaic, but you don’t want to reinvent the wheel completely all the time and alienate fans…

Well yeah, I don’t think they’re the type of band to go completely off the wall with something that’s not them. They are who they are, and they mixed two genres together in my opinion, and birthed this sub-genre of music; and my belief, they’re the only ones who are in it. And they’ve made it for themselves, and they’re killer.

Rewinding back to 2006 and looking back to Project 86’s headlining tour, in which August Burns Red was in a supporting spot, how surreal is it that it’s now 2012 and August Burns Red is on their 4th, maybe 5th full U.S. headliner? 

Well this headliner is definitely the best one that we’ve ever done, and definitely the most work as far as headliners. We’re doing 15 songs a night on this tour, which pans out to be about an hour and 15 minutes a night, which vocally is a little stressful and challenging — it’s been great though.

Coming from March of 2006 when I first started touring and opening for Project 86 to now, where we’re headlining all across the States and into Canada for 7 and a half weeks, it’s a pretty big difference. You know, it took us 6 years; we just didn’t wake up and all of a sudden become at the caliber of band that we’re at now. It’s not so much surreal to me, because I worked for it; because I had to spend 6 years of my life going slowly but surely uphill, working diligently towards this goal where we are now present day. But it is a blessing, I am thankful, there’s nothing else in this world that I would rather be doing, but be where I am right now; I feel this is where God wants me, I feel like that our music is making a positive impact on the world — so I don’t know what else I could ask for.

Read the entire interview here

ABR‘s latest album Leveler was released on June 21, 2011 via Solid State Records. The effort was made available in both regular and deluxe editions — a first for the band.

For LevelerAugust Burns Red  re-teamed with producer Jason Suecof, the man behind the board on the band’s previous CD, 2009’s Constellations, which landed at No. 24 on The Billboard 200 and sold more than 90,000 copies. The result is an album that pushes the band’s sonic boundaries in every direction, yet emerges as an unquestionably heavier album than its predecessor.

“Putting out a fourth record is a little scary because we obviously have our sound figured out at this point, but we don’t want to put out a record that just sounds like a redux of our previous albums,” explains JB Brubaker. “Our tastes are always evolving as musicians and we’ve been motivated to progress as a band and push ABR in different directions, while maintaining the characteristics that made us the band we are in the first place.”

While August Burns Red has never succumbed to the artistic trends in metal album covers, Leveler represents an even larger departure than fans have seen on the band’s previous albums. The artwork, created by artist Jordan Crane, brings a striking comic book flair that the band wanted the artwork to encompass.

Related articles:
August Burns Red – Leveler (Deluxe Edition) [CD review]
‘Eastpak Antidote Tour 2011′ with ‘August Buns Red’ and others [Sept. 2011]
‘Brick By Brick’ – ‘Connecting Cultures, Creating Community’ [Aug. 2011]
‘August Burns Red’ – ‘God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen’ [Available For Streaming/Download] [Nov. 2011]

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