Citing the Dillinger Escape Plan and Refused as influences, the Bled have been wowing fans with a cathartic combination of odd time signatures, dissonant chords and aggressive vocals for more than nine years. But the Tucson, Ariz.-based quartet don't look quite the same. In the past year and a half, they've lost a bassist, gained a guitarist and drummer, and migrated to the Rise Records roster.
I talked with guitarist and founding member Jeremy Ray Talley about the band's new faces and its new album, Heat Fetish.
Isthmus: What was on your minds when you were putting together Heat Fetish?
Talley: We wanted [the album] to be energetic and heavy but fun, too, something that would represent the energy we try to bring to the live shows and something we'd want to play night after night for the next couple of years. We're really proud of what we came up with.
You've had quite a few lineup changes in the last year or so. How's the transition going?
Things are going really well. We're getting along and, musically, the chemistry is spot-on.
Do you think of yourselves as a different band now?
I think we're the same band. It still feels pretty much the same to play the old material. There are differences, of course, but the new music doesn't feel like it belongs in a different catalog than the other stuff the band's put out before. And with this lineup, we've kept the energy of performing live that fans have come to expect.
Why are you looking forward to playing Madison?
We don't get to pick where we go on every tour, so when we saw Madison come up on the list, we were pretty excited. It's one of those spots we hardly ever get to go. We've gotten lots of emails and MySpace messages from Madison people, and we love playing Chicago, so it's great to play other cities near there.