Robby BloodshedWhy you need to know Robby Bloodshed
By Naughty Mickie

New Jersey’s Robby Bloodshed is young and talented. In 2010 at age 13 he knew music was his calling and started a punk project. Over time it expanded its sound to include touches of almost every genre and the influence of artists, such as Queen, Danzig and KISS became obvious in his work. As for Bloodshed’s prowess, he has graced the stage with acts, like I See Stars, Agent Orange, The Casualties, Mister Monster and Joey Belladonna.

Bloodshed’s project is a solo effort with drummer Marc Poulin and bassist Jesse Nameless as his touring band. The three are also bandmates in Vagora. It is Poulin who we must thank for making DaBelly aware of Bloodshed and helping facilitate our interview. Bloodshed will release his sixth full-length effort, “21 and On,” on April 9, which is also his 21st birthday.

We begin by discussing Bloodshed’s writing process.

“I keep my phone in my pocket at all times and if I find I get any little spark of inspiration I’ll say it into it, keep it there and then I’ll either revisit it or if I feel like it’s really, really something that’s drawing me in, I’ll keep expanding upon it,” Bloodshed explains.”Really it’s just a matter of what gets my attention right at that moment and I come up with something. I’m not one of these people who sits down every day and writes, it’s just when I’m inspired that I’ll write.”

I wonder if the touring band helps hone the material or if Bloodshed maintains control.

“Especially with this new album, I wrote all the songs, but I brought them to Marc and I said I want you to do this or this with the drums, but make it your own and do your own thing. I would give him a basic template and he would elaborate and do what he does best,” says Bloodshed

And what about the lyrics of his songs?

“Lately I’ve been focusing a lot on personal things that have happened to me, whether it be a fight or a conversation with friends, love, all of that stuff. When I was a young kid I would write about horror stuff, but nowadays I write about what I observe and what I see because it hits home most for me and usually when it hits home for some reason the songs always turn out better,” responds Bloodshed

I’m curious how different Bloodshed feels “21 and On” is from his previous EPs and albums.

“It’s very clear I’ve evolved a lot on this album, but there’s some songs where I revisit my older sounds, like basic rock and roll punk. With this specifically I move forward a lot while staying true to my roots.”

So has displaying his evolution on the new effort been simply a natural progression of things or is it a conscious decision, I ask.

“It’s conscious, but it’s also natural,” Bloodshed says. “I wanted to show off some abilities that I feel like I’m honing, but I also feel like it’s time. How many times can I do the same stuff? It gets repetitive after a while.”

Bloodshed is wise beyond his years, but I prod him to share if he thinks his youth is an asset or a liability for his music career.

“I do believe that I’ve done a lot for my age. I look at people around me and what they’ve done, other musicians, and they were all probably starting around my age. This is my sixth full-length and I have the advantage of knowing what I can do, what I want to do and what are rookie mistakes. I think that helps me out in the long term of things,” Bloodshed tells me.

“Social media is a double edged sword because it’s great you can reach out to so many people and to find great bands, but it also means that there’s going to be a lot of garbage that you’re going to have to sift through. Everybody has a voice now,” Bloodshed continues. “I look back at the ‘70s and ‘80s, bands really had to have talent to be in the studio or for it to catch on, nowadays anybody with a laptop can just record and it’s crazy because so much stuff gets out. It’s not that everything was good from the ‘70s and ‘80s, but you had to have talent to be recognized as opposed to now.”

Starting April 14 Robby Bloodshed will hit the road with Vagora through the central and southern United States.

“We’ve done the co-headline tour with both bands, but this one especially is going to be focused in support of Rob’s new album,” Poulin shares. “We’re going to be hitting up some places we’ve been, but also some new places too. It will be interesting, it will be fun. We haven’t toured in April in a while, the last couple big ones were in the summer, so temperature-wise it should be a little better and all over experience-wise, just because it’s condensed, everything is going to count to push the album out.”

I ask Poulin if it’s tough to tour and play night after night in two bands.

“It’s something I’ve always done,” responds Poulin. “Just throughout my career I’ve been in multiple bands at the same time and I’ve done multiple tours playing double sets. It is a challenge, but at the same time I actually welcome it because for us to travel the amount of time that we do, usually hours and hours of driving, and you only get to set up and play for anywhere from an hour to a half-hour per night, so to set my stuff up and play two sets is very rewarding.

Robby Bloodshed“Specifically with Robby and Vagora, I think from an outside glance it’s very easy to think that it’s literally the same band with just a different lineup and that’s really not the case, each band stands out on it’s own.” Poulin goes on, “Yes, we do share members to an extent, but that’s more of how things came together than for the music’s sake. Each band can really stand on its own if you were to just listen to the songs than have a visual of who was on the stage.”

What’s next for Robby Bloodshed?

“After this tour I’m going to be working on another, not a new full-length, but more of a pastiche of stuff that I’ve done over the years because I’ve put out so many albums now where I play little bits and pieces from each album,” Bloodshed says. “I want something where fans can get just one CD. Right now we’re working on a little bit of new material, but a lot of remixing for someone to grab the album and say, ‘Oh, this is everything that I’ve heard live. These are the best songs.’ We’re also going to be shifting focus and doing a lot of Vagora stuff because we’re working on a new album as well. It never stops.”

Poulin adds his thoughts about Vagora,  “Since Rob comes up from New Jersey (Vagora is based in Providence, Rhode Island) we really make the practices with him important and we make sure we are writing. We are sending ideas over the internet so we’re all on the same page before we get in the same room. When Rob comes up, he’s been on a schedule of twice a month as best he can, he stays with me and we use the additional days we’re not rehearsing to record material. Aside from playing I’m getting more into the studio side of things. It’s something I’ve been doing for a long time, but just really focusing on it moreso in the last few years.”

Vagora hopes to have its new album out by fall or the end of the year.

Poulin returns to Robby Bloodshed,  “I’ve seen Rob play guitar for a long time and this album is a combination of where he’s at from where he’s been. When we come back from the tour he’s going to have more music videos to put out, so the album is not going to be a release date and that’s it, it’s going to be a continuing, evolving process.”

“I’m going to keep promoting this new album, ‘21 and On,’ until I feel I can’t any more. I’m going to be putting out more videos and more promotion,” Bloodshed says.

Watch for Robby Bloodshed’s music videos and find out when he’s coming to your town live by following him at

https://www.facebook.com/RobbyBloodshed/

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