New Band Of The Week: 7 Minutes In Heaven
Chart-bothering Chicagoans 7 Minutes In Heaven give us the low-down on their alt-rockin', pop-punk sound
A case could be made that in this instance, our new band of the week aren't exactly new. Formed in 2012, Chicago pop-punk four-piece 7 Minutes In Heaven (7MIH to their friends) have already had one EP, Side Effects, spawn singles that reached the Billboard Charts in their native US. However, after five years hard slog, having both penned a new record deal with Rude Records and added new drummer Brennan Gilbert to their ranks, 2017 is the year they roll up their sleeves and make a play for global success.
Below, we catch up with frontman Timmy Rasmussen to find out all about his band, their new EP Symmetry, and what they have lined up for next.
Can you introduce yourselves – where are you from, who does what and what are your roles in the band?
"Hello, my name is Timmy Rasmussen. I’m from Washington State, relocated to Illinois about six years ago and have multiple roles in 7MIH including: songwriter, singer, guitarist, manager, booking agent and a few other things. The other guys are Alex Rogers - Vocals/Bass, Justin Mondzak - Guitar, Brennan Gilbert - Drums."
What’s the story behind the name?
"Nothing too complex. I was hanging with a friend in his kitchen scrolling through his iTunes library trying to find a name for the project. He would quickly scroll up / down and I’d put my finger on the screen and whatever it landed on was the one. Granted, I cheated – I think 7MIH was my third attempt because I didn’t like the ones I was landing on [laughs]."
What were your key influences/inspirations in getting the band together?
"Growing up on Blink-182 as my favourite band, I always dreamt of that duel-vocal dynamic. I fell into being a vocalist by accident when my first “band” in middle school lost ours, [and] I stepped up. I was awful; I’m still pretty bad, but I was AWFUL. Having Alex to switch off with is great because it allows me to have those moments to jump around like a maniac and really loosen up. Most importantly, we all have a good dynamic together."
How would you describe your sound in three words for people who’ve never heard you?
"Loud. Deep. Uplifting."
What makes you different to other bands out there?
"I dislike these questions, because my answer is always going to portray that I know what every other band is doing, and I don’t. Just being ourselves, not trying to worry about what other bands are doing and just living our own lives, writing our own story and finding our own path. The grind never stops, I don’t have as much time as I’d like to analyse other artists."
What’s the story behind the new EP Symmetry?
"It’s essentially a part two to our previous release, Side Effects. My idea was to hypothetically be flipping from Side A to Side B, picking up where it was left off musically, but experimenting as we naturally would. It has the same needle drop to start out the record, but this time closing with a more cryptic vibe, leaving it with loose ends for an epic follow-up. Artwork wise was my imagination connecting Symmetry to Side Effects, creating an alternate-universe, showing the growth, change, development in our lives / this alt-world almost two years later from the latest release. Showing different angles, perspectives, introducing different objects that may or may not help the narrative through their journey."
What drew you to the themes you cover on the EP?
"Real life experiences. Complacency, emotional hunger and desire to understand myself; a lot of self-reflection, restlessness, a burning passion that never seems to be fulfilled. LIFE, MAN..."
What do you hope people will take away from the EP, and your music in general?
"I hope I’m able to make a connection, whether it’s me to you or you to me. If I’m able to get through to anyone struggling and help them locate themselves, their purpose, their passion, whatever it is that is happiness to you. You’re going to die someday, there’s no reason you should be unhappy with whatever you’re doing, and if there is than fix it. I’m over excuses. I highly encourage you to live your life for YOU and no one else."
What's been the highlight of your time in the band so far?
"The perspective, I’m grateful to have experienced every conversation, obstacle, triumph I’ve ever had because of this project because it helps me learn more about myself – what I like, what I don’t like, what I didn’t even know was a thing, etc. It’s beautiful."
Where do you see the band in another five years’ time?
"No idea, but I’m gonna roll with the punches."
What do you have planned for next?
"I think what we do the rest of this year will heavily influence and determine next year for us. With that being said: tour, festivals, record release, tour, tour, tour, tour times infinity!"
Symmetry will be released on 15th September via Rude Records.