The old men are coming to ride again. Sexy beasts, Redbull, and Rhonda Rousey are coming your way so don’t say we didn’t warn you.

The eternal teenagers of Flint, MI’s metal scene that make up the band known as, Sydetrakt, are Trent Duckworth (drums), Wayne VanNorman (vocals), David Asbridge (guitar), and Ed Wheeler (bass). The guys may be the grandfather’s of Dirt Fest, but they’ll still kick your ass. The fellas sat down for a few to tell us about the band’s plans, sexy beasts, and skinny jeans. Sit down, buckle in, and get ready for one hell of a ride.

NRR: You guys are from the Flint, MI area and have been around since 2010. What’s been going on with the band in the last year?
Sydetrakt: We released our EP, For Better or Worse, last year at Dirt Fest. So we’ve been promoting that and playing select local and national shows around our area working to get our hometown behind us. Other than that we’ve been living life and writing new material for our next album.
NRR: Hopefully you guys have a great time on stage this year. Are you looking forward to anything in particular at Dirt Fest 2015 to keep the ball rollin’?
Sydetrakt: Thanks! It’s always fun to play on stage, especially at DIRT FEST! The crowd is always so awesome and very responsive. Nothing but kind words from everyone we run across after we play. Whether it’s for two people or 2000, it’s always a great time. It’s what we love to do. Playing live is always so surreal, and we look forward to meeting all the other bands and new people. Especially the ones who seem to “get” what we are about and what we are doing. And of course hand with all of our close friends, family and fans that come support us. Much love to our peeps and all “The TRAKT Heads” for letting us know we don’t suck that bad, (laughing)!
NRR: Will we hear new material at Dirt Fest this year from you guys?
Sydetrakt: We are playing one new song for sure. Maybe another one and maybe, just maybe “Every2nd” off our EP. We haven’t really played that one live since we recorded it. You’ll just have to come see what we do. We have a few surprises.
NRR:Well played, gentlemen. With as much time as the band has in combined music experience do you believe you can still keep up with the kids that are making today’s waves with less time under their belts?

Sydetrakt: Wow! That bio does make us sound old, (laughing). Only in experience and age. (Laughing). Our maturity level is still in its teenage years when we are all together. What do you mean “keep up with these kids?” They can’t keep up with us because they can’t run in skinny jeans, (laughing). Just playing. We’ve never felt like we have to keep up or compare to anyone else. These new kids are monsters. And we give kudos to the waves they are making. They are killing it and sound amazing. We love listening to a lot of them.

But to be honest a lot of the newer bands are all starting too sound similar. It’s getting hard to tell them apart with them all using the same sounds and programs with auto tune and writing on their computers to achieve technical perfection with tons of backing tracks that no one will be physically playing at live shows. There just seems to be too much production going on. The magic seems to have been sacrificed to get phenomenal sounding precision production instead. And that’s awesome for them. That’s just not how we learned or like to play music. We could do the same kinda shit and sit at a computer to write perfect musical masterpiece, but we feel that would take the fun out of playing together as a team.

“Sydetrakt is repping the 810 with their energetic blend of metal and emotion.” ~ Matt Dalton, Metro 37 Studios

If anything we need to keep doing things our way. Real, raw, and with the feeling that our bodies spit through our instruments while feeding off of each other’s energy at that specific moment together, whether playing live or writing. No overthinking whether speeding up, or slowing down. Fucking up and correcting it to make it still flow live with no tracks or clicks to restrain us is the best way to feed off the crowd. Some of us have done that kind of shit live and it’s just not that fun to us. We play for ourselves honestly because it is fun for us. If the crowd likes it cool. If not, cool. Most people, either when they see us or hear us, get what we are musically about right away. We feel that’s the best way for us. We are doing our own thing.

We appeal to both the older and younger generations which is helping us to stand out at the shows we play. We aren’t pigeon holing ourselves to one type of crowd. We can hold our own with anyone. Fuck what every body else does. We aren’t in competition with anyone. We are just having a fun, cathartic experience, trying to kick out some of our frustrations while getting lost in the moment of being in front of a crowd. It’s a release that people of all ages are enjoying with us. So there is no keeping up with anyone. We are flying our own solo mission in another galaxy. BOOM! (laughing).

NRR: Would you say at this point in your music careers that you’d feel comfortable with playing next to anyone on a bill since you’ve opened for quite a few national bands? Or would there still be a band or two that would make you guys a bit nervous to play with on the same stage?
Sydetrakt: Yeah we’d be fine to play with anyone. We’ve been fortunate to open for a lot of the bands we grew up listening to so the star struck shit don’t really get to us. We’d love to play with Deftones, or Limp Bizkit, or any of the other bad-ass bands out there, old school and new. But we wouldn’t get nervous about who we’d play with. But the size of venue and crowd, like arenas, would probably fuck with our nerves a little. Oh And midgets make Dz nervous, (laughing).
NRR: What can we expect from Sydetrakt camp in the coming days after Dirt Fest is dormant in it’s suspended animation again until 2016?
Waynegsta: Working on the new material for the next album.
Tsyke: Trying to get the new songs ready for the studio and book a few more shows before the winter hits us again. And keep building our online presence to get our music out there.
Dz: Boatz and Hoez and work on a concept country album. Just kidding. About the album, (laughing).
Wheelz: Gonna start a toy dog fighting ring. I just got this Pomeranian and she’s going to be the Rhonda Rousey of puff ball. Again…just kidding.
NRR: Is there a band or bands on this year’s Dirt Fest line-up that you are looking forward to seeing as fans?
Sydetrakt: Yeah we are looking forward to every band at Dirt Fest this year. The bill for both days is kick ass! But to name a few, Coal Chamber, Fear Factory, STARSET, Periphery, and King 810. But shit. We are looking forward to everyone, locals and national acts alike.
NRR: How important is selling merch for you guys at a festival like this? What works best, i.e. sells, for you guys?


Sydetrakt – You’ll Never Know

Sydetrakt: Merch sales are very important. Not so much for the money, granted it helps a ton, but more so to meet new people and be able to get them to rep our logo. And to have people show off our music is the best part. The best way we’ve learned to sell our merch is to always be at our booth or standing in front of it and try to engage everyone that walks by.
NRR: For anyone that might not have heard your music before, what can they expect to get from your sound on stage being self described as a Metal/Nu Metal band?
Sydetrakt: Expect straight forward, raw, pure feeling with a little taste of violence. You know. Some double kick, some electronic drums (really being played live, laughing), krunchy guitars, thick bass, and vocals you can understand and feel. Even when we are screaming at the top of our lungs.
NRR: Metro 37 Studios sings some pretty high praise of you guys. What is it like working with the studio and Matt Dalton?
Sydetrakt: Metro 37 and Matt were both great to us. The studio was very chill and comfortable and Matt understood what we were doing musically right away. We all grew up listening to the same bands. And playing the same local venues back in the day. So it all clicked right away. Matt is an excellent producer. And his engineer, Joey, was just as awesome. They both worked hard and fast. No BS. Working with both of them was like sex and pizza with some Redbull to wash it down. Just fucking perfect. We recommend both Matt, Joey and the rest of 37 Studios to everyone and anyone who is serious about putting out great music. We can’t wait to get back down there with them and do it again for the next disc. Hopefully by next year. Plus Matt Dalton is a SEXY BEAST! And that’s always fun to hang out with.

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About The Author

After getting the photo bug in the far, past days of black and white film, Erich continued to develop his eye for photography which lead to stops in the sporting, art, wedding, and eventually concert music worlds. Now, doing more writing for National Rock Review, he has entered into the journey of getting to know the artists and the industry, not just the faces on the other side of the lens.

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