Interview: Terror – Scott Vogel and new album “Live By The Code”

Scott Vogel from Terror has made his mark and kept the faith year after year since the band’s inception (and even longer if you count his earlier groups, which you should).

When Terror came out they reminded everyone of the basic things about hardcore that are great, a real “cut to the chase” band. While they have grown and never looked back, inspiring countless kids along the way, they have always lived by the code.

Newly signed to Victory Records, the group are fired up and ready to rip your head off yet again. DS talked to Scott about the new album, touring the world and also career highlights. Click here to read more!

Scott, how are you today? It is fantastic to talk to you. I wanted to say congrats on the new album and still making an impact. How are you feeling about the new record and your tour with H20?

I’m feeling great today, thanks for the kind words. We’re driving from Miami to Tampa right now, doing some interviews on the way to the next show. The tour’s been really good so far and the record is done and it’s pretty fucking good man. 2013. Exciting shit man.

What are some places you have traveled to that you never thought you’d see and how did they change you as a human being?

South East Asia. Australia and New Zealand. Russia and every inch of Europe. You know most people never get to see the world like I have. Truly blessed. And all the while playing music? It’s incredible. I’ve seen how people live and think all over the world. The poorest of the poor and richest of the rich. The things I’ve seen and the people I’ve met have made me the steadfast person I am today. I’m just a really lucky guy.

How does it feel moving to Victory Records? Some people dislike the modern version of the label but I for one think they have done a fantastic job over at Victory Metal with hard touring and legit bands like God Forbid and Blackguard who are really part of the scene and also are signing some real hardcore bands again like…well, you guys. I also really like that band Fall City Fall. How did this come about?

We are excited. Straight up. I can sort of see how some followers of Terror were surprised by the move, but people that really follow us know that I’ve been in Victory bands before. In regards to what is best for us and the contract we were under with Century Media, I feel we came out in a very cool spot. Tony heard Live by the Code and loved it. Terror, Tony and Century Media talked and made a plan for everyone to be happy, and everybody is.
Can you tell us about the title Live By The Code? I mean, it kind of says it all and isn’t that different of a title from Keepers Of The Faith, in a sense. Not that that is a bad thing. You stand for what you stand for. But, at this point in the lifespan of the band, how is the new album the “statement” you want to make NOW in 2013?

I could sit here and tell you what it means to me, but you’re going have to wait til the record comes out. The layout and style of the album will sum up what Terror has always been about. You’ll find the answer there.

I love the design for your ‘Generations Crewneck’ from Keepers Of The Faith. It shows an older hardcore dude walking and holding a toddler’s hand, the next generation. It’s really a simple but complete statement. As you get older and think about the evolution of hardcore culture, what do you hope to impress upon young people? That is a far reaching question but I want to give you lots of room to respond without it being too specific.

That’s my friend Ian and his son Nolan. I know when I was young and lost and confused trying to figure out life and my place here on earth, music and lyrics came along and helped me in many ways. I think about bands like Agnostic Front and Warzone paving the wave for Terror, so as a band I always try to take younger bands on tour that we feel have drive and talent. For us, it’s all about keeping genuine hardcore alive.

Scott, you have been doing this a long time and I admire your drive. I remember seeing live footage of Buried Alive years ago and when I heard you broke up I was really bummed because I loved your roar and energy. I thought, there goes a great hardcore vocalist. But thank the stars you came back stronger and I never would’ve thought upon hearing Buried Alive that your DEFINITIVE band was yet to come…but Terror really is THAT band for you. Can you talk about the journey from here to there a bit? You saw great bands…Reach The Sky comes to mind, a decade or so back that go overlooked by new scene kids. Other bands as well. And you still hang with current bands and interact. I am very thankful we still have the greats like Sick Of It All and Bad Brains still making great music and then middle-era hardcore like you or Matt Fox from Shai Hulud from the 90’s-00’s and then newer bands as well. It is like one big language.

When Buried Alive broke up I didn’t wanna be in a band. It was too much for too little. After all the potential of BA everybody was so crushed when it didn’t work out, and I didn’t want to go through that shit again. But as time when on I got that itch, Terror came, and I’ve never looked back. This is the best and realest band I’ve ever been a part of. Yes, a lot of bands are overlooked and forgotten just as some bands are worshiped that don’t deserve it. Hardcore kids and music fans in general are a strange bunch, that’s for sure. I’m just trying to carry the torch that bands like Sick Of It All lit.

I am a big fan of your Always The Hard Way album and particularly the song “So Close To Defeat”. Can you talk a bit about memories of collaborating with Eddie from Leeway on that track? Any guests on the new album?

No guests on the new one. Eddie was fun and easy going. A bit weird, but aren’t we all? We did that record in Mass with Zeus. It came out great and I love the art. Aaron Knuckles was hanging out a lot and he sang on it too. Carl from First Blood played all the guitars and Frank quit to join Hatebreed the week after we finished the record. Terror’s been on a wild ride. Hardcore is about sticking to it.

How do you feel about hardcore band reunions? A lot of them are happening these days. I am excited to go see Quicksand tomorrow but I have to say when I heard about 2 Black Flag reunions with different line-ups, I felt like that ship has sailed…though I would go see the Keith Morris Flag band over the Greg Ginn Black Flag that is recording a new album. I feel like some older bands can make new material and it works but others should maybe let the sleeping dogs lie. I dunno…

I’m not a big fan of reunions for the most part. It’s rare that a band does it right. Nothing worse than seeing a band you loved all washed up and beat, trying to relive a feeling that just isn’t there. Or dudes singing words they don’t even believe in anymore. Or someone using hardcore for money. But bands can do what they want and people can buy into what they do. I would just rather get a new demo than do a “reunion”.

This isn’t so much a question but more of a thank you. Thanks for working so hard on your band and serving as a role model to people who want to create bold and powerful music with depth and social meaning. You guys are angry but it means something. It isn’t pointless mosh with no cause. The band name during the “War On Terror” speaks for itself as far as how gutsy it must have had to have been at times to tour with that band name, same goes for Anthrax. But you have always stuck to your guns through the ups and downs and I really gotta give you guys huge props. It is bands like yours that make me unable to give up myself (as a writer, performer or activist), which is a good thing.

Thanks for the nice words, man. The spirit lives in me, you and everybody that believes in the true underground. Live by the Code 2013. Take it personal.

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