Polyphia‘s famous guitarist Tim Henson talks about modern metal bands. He expresses just the right amount of teenage attitude to be entertaining. He speaks in an unwaveringly flat tone and has his camera off. He also doesn’t care if he offends anyone.
The real key to Polyphia‘s success is they don’t care about anything besides the musical style. They left Texas as teenagers with tattoos and hairstyles. However, it wasn’t their breakdowns that made them famous; rather, it was their decision to skip metal in favor of writing some of the most musical-style licks of the twenty-first century. They have amassed millions of YouTube views and Instagram popularity thanks to their instrumental jams that mix funk, math rock, and hip-hop.
Tim Henson also appears to know that his group is not just a rarity in the genre. But also in music. However, in a time when it seems like guitar-driven music is being pushed out of the mainstream, for rock music.
In a new interview with Guitar Magazine, Polyphia’s Tim Henson talked about modern metal bands and how inspired their musical style:
“It’s not really cool to be in a metal band because they don’t make any money. Literally every guitar-centred thing is just solos on solos on solos. We’ve certainly done records that were solos on solos on solos but between them we actually had hooks.
We take inspiration from anything. If you were to take away the guitars on the past few records and just listen to the drums and bass, they’re just playing beats, whether they’re trap beats or future bass beats. If you were to take the guitars off and then add vocals to what’s playing, it would just sound like whatever genre of music it is we’re doing. The guitar is the only guitar-y thing about Polyphia: the rest is just humans playing programmed parts.
In 2020, Steve asked us to open for him at his NAMM show. Afterwards we went to the DiMarzio party and got drunk and asked him, ‘Okay, would you be down to feature on one of our songs?’ And he was like, ‘Of course!’ A couple of years later, we had the song and sent him an email. And here it is. Usually when I do something for somebody, they just take it the way it is. These guys are very creative, and they like to manipulate things. When I first heard it, though, it was so different. Thought, ‘Maybe they didn’t like what I did!’
“I fucking hated the violin growing up. I had fairly abusive teachers. If I fucked up, I got my hand slapped with the fucking bow. And I can’t say that my mum was super-chill about forcing me to practise either. You can imagine, as a child, you’d just fucking hate it. But it taught me discipline and I’m very grateful for the experience, because it made me fall in love with guitar.”
He also added about his idols like Black Sabbath:
“Black Sabbath is so easy to learn by ear. Everything is pentatonic E minor.”
Tim Henson’s thoughts about new metal bands:
“We were definitely little pieces of shit about it. Just kids being kids. You can be a kid and be a piece of shit without cool things happening to you. I remember, in high school, my dream was to tour for a living. A few short years later, we were doing that. Then I was like, ‘If we could get even bigger, that would be cool!’ It takes a minute to grow up, especially when your frontal lobe is developing.”
Polyphia‘s fresh and new album “Remember That You Will Die” will release on October 28th, 2022. Listen to the ‘Playing God‘ song below!
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