By: Stephanie Stevens
SAUL is coming out of the midwest with guns blazing and claws out with the bands debut album RISE AS EQUALS. the band formed in 2017 and combines the talent of brothers Blake Bedsaul-voice, Zach Bedsaul-guitar, b.vocals, William Mcllravy- bass/b. Vocals and Myles Clayborne-drums.
The debut album lashes out with raw emotion, stories of lose, love and positivity. Writing songs like it could be the last word n music they write compelled them to deliver a very powerful, emotional hard hitting loaded track listing of songs for a debut album. The emotional tale of BROTHER, to the melody driven sounds of KING OF MISERY to the beautiful layering of the song LEVEE this band captures all angles of a timeless rock n roll band.
I had the pleasure to chat with Zach Bedsaul about the release of RISE AS EQUALS , having the heavy hitters of the music industry in their corner, the bands fans =EQUALS=, and how they are adapting to the changes of 2020.
Q: Some say you guys are an overnight success but everyone starts somewhere do you remember the first original song you wrote and what about it made you figure out you could make this a career?
A: Oddly enough it does seem overnight because when it hit, it rushed in really fast. Blake and myself have been writing music since high school, and always had that itch to keep writing. We put our first EP out my senior year of high school in 2007, the surprising response and reaction is what fueled us to keep pushing forward.
Q: I always say from pain comes the most beautiful art and you guys did that with the song BROTHER. How can you explain the feelings you got expressing the emotion and how do you feel it has helped your fans and others in general?
A: We always try to make every song, every lyric something personal to help us and others. Brother was interesting because it helped us cope with our loss, and now we hear it helping =Equals= the same way. That’s the best feeling in the world, music is therapeutic and heals all eventually.
Q: I love knowing you have a good bond with the band Seasons After. Can you tell people who may not know how these guys helped SAUL and what have you learnt from the guys themselves in moving forward in the world of rock n roll?
A: Chris Dawson has been one of my best friends and our manager since January of 2019. He has taught us amazing business related assets as well as music knowledge. I think we’ve built a phenomenal team with Dawson managing/producing/engineering and Jimmy Beattie is such a knowledgeable and skilled musician/songwriter. We feel blessed to have these guys on the team.
Q: Spinefarm is releasing your amazing debut album RISE AS EQUALS, not only is it your creativity and talent but can you tell people reading this how having a loyal family driven team around the band help in the positive motivation for any band?
A: It’s the only way we can/would have it. We’re a family business and always have been so that’s really important to us. I think the upside we can be very open and communicate as needed. We love having input from the team on ideas and strategies, it makes it feel real.
Q: Your new single KING OF MISERY was co-written by David Draiman of Disturbed, how did that relationship happen and what was most important to you guys in his helping create this song knowing the back story about what the song is about?
A: Darren our A&R rep was managing Trivium on one of their earlier albums before he got with SF. He reached out to David’s management and he seemed very eager to work on the material. You know, we wrote this song in the midst of the pandemic so it’s really easy to have a negative outlook on the world at the time, but relatable to so many people. David was fantastic to work with, and was such a great asset to have for melodies and certain vocal rhythms. He’s a very humble guy, and was an absolute honor to be in that position.
Q: You guys are very successfully rising to stardom levels but for you how does it feel knowing the guys who have made great successes in this industry are backing and supporting you guys being still a young band on the rise?
A: It’s the reason we picked up instruments in the first place. I want to be like Dan of Disturbed, or I want to play like Adam Jones. It’s hard to explain but feels appropriate seeing and hearing the veterans of the industry gives us the “nod of approval.”
Q: I love seeing you call your fans “equals” and your album title and one of the songs on the album is called RISE AS EQUALS (probably also my fav. Track on the CD. Through 2020 we have seen some splits of supporting each other. For people who are struggling to understand others that aren’t “like them”, what could you try to make them understand?
A: No one is above or below. We are eye to eye. We all rise together. I think it’s our responsibility as creators and entertainers to acknowledge our fan bases and let them know their importance. At the end of the day we all need to realize we’re humans, no one is better than anyone else, and we’re stronger in numbers. Respect, understanding and communication go a long ways.
Q: LEVEE is another track that moved me vocally, being that Blake didn’t start right off the bat as a singer what was the process in learning your vocal range and challenges that you faced when doing this album if there was any?
A: This song is full of raw emotions and leaves Blake’s vocals in a pretty delicate state. Blake has always been a natural vocalist with a fantastic singing voice and a perfect rasp when needed. He’s currently been taking vocal lessons from legendary Melissa Cross to help maintain endurance with control.
Q: What are you most excited for the world to hear when they finally get the chance to listen to the album front to back? What is the most important thing you want people to walk away with after a listen?
A: I just want people to take anything positive they can from it, and hopefully implement that into their lives. It’s been exciting to see and hear =Equals= reactions, and it’s nice to see all the time and hard work getting some attention.
Q: How have you adapted to the changes in the music industry since 2020 impacted it and where do you see the future of the industry?
A: We’ve been doing some live stream events and trying to stay more active on our socials. When things open up I still can see live streams and events being popular. It’s been interesting but fun in a sense to learn new things.
Q: Music is one thing in life I think everyone needs, growing up what was that one song that changed your life drastically and does it still impact you to this day and why?
A: I was twelve years old and my older brother Caleb introduced me to Judith – A Perfect Circle. It was haunting and overwhelmed my senses while flooding my brain with endorphins packed full of fear and excitement. It just seemed so dark and desperate, I think that’s why I loved it. I’ve battled my whole life with anxiety and depression so it seemed like I found myself right then and there.
Q: What do you have in the works once the album is released on Oct 23rd, will you try to do some sort of shows (depending on where you live etc) or live stream or videos etc to connect with fans?
A: We have some stuff in the works right now. Keep your eyes and ears open!
Q: Empower another artists by telling us who inspires you and why?
A: Adam Jones of Tool. He’s such a great artist, guitarist, father and husband. I try to achieve these goals everyday.
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