“Surrounded by yourself and you know that you're in hell
But the light sings for the Raven
Fly around in stealth and in darkness can't you tell
That the crow brings its own haven”
Conspiracies of Ravens & Murders of Crows… Brandon Lee & Edgar Allen Poe… “Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December…”
Ravens & Crows… more often than not associated to evil, underworld, death, bad omens. But… most people underestimate them. The genus Corvus actually has the highest brain-to-body size ratio of all living birds (and most likely a considerable higher density of neurons in their forebrains than primates). They build tools… from memory.
So maybe it’s time you all start listening to all those black birds who sing the songs of their people… As Saint Raven did. And they sprinkled them with the fearless quality of youth, the wisdom of old souls… and a touch of divinity!
Tyler Bromberg (songwriter, singer & guitarist) was 19 years old when he wrote the lyrics for Saint Raven’s debut album Crow (released 2017). He is now 21. Bassist Braden Persch & guitarist Eric Sparx complete the band’s line up.
It always amazes me when I meet people of young age who have actually spent some thoughts on life instead of on the latest gadgets & commodities. It renews my faith in humankind… or at least a small percentage of it...
Crow Xp: Hi, Tyler. I remember you telling me once that you want to make a career out of music… I am curious… Which do you hear more often: You are very mature for your age? Or grow up & get a real job? How easy/hard has it been so far?
Tyler Bromberg: Definitely both! The ones that say to grow up and get a real job are generally people that aren't very happy in their lives. They like to pretend they are, but deep down they know they are never going to be truly happy because they work some shit job that they hate and took the easy road of life that has no room for fulfillment whatsoever. The people that congratulate me are the ones that are working towards fulfillment or have already achieved it in some manner.
There is no such thing as a real job, they are all life styles. Some people would rather be safe and comfortable in an office all day while simultaneously hating their life. I'd rather take the risk of not being able to buy some fancy car I don't need and living a fulfilling life attempting to accomplish one of the most difficult careers a person could ever strive for. Music is my life.
Crow Xp: How did Saint Raven come into being? I know you had another band before this one – Entomb the Wicked. Why the change?
Tyler: Entomb The Wicked was death metal, and to me and the other members in the band it felt like we were in this creative box made out of steel (metal pun intended). You can only do so much playing at 200bpms. I mean, the music that was made was alright, but it wasn't as good as our potential, and there was no room to grow. When we went into the studio to start making the "Crow" EP we started leaning towards rock. By the end of production the last two songs we recorded were "Echo" and "Crow". We knew at that point that we had something entirely different, something much grander. We knew we had to rebrand, so we did. We changed the name, changed the music entirely, and became Saint Raven.
Writing the music we do now enabled us to reach our full potential. I wanted to write about any subject I wanted to, any emotion, any vibe; and that just isn't something you can do with death metal. Our newest EP coming out has an acoustic song on it, and that's only something you can do with rock while still being able to play songs with some grit.
Crow Xp: Crow deals with some heavy topics… Tell us about some of the songs… Maybe the title song would be a good one to start with… ;)
Tyler: The title track was the last song we wrote and recorded for the EP. Lyrically it became a statement. It is a statement of many things, on one side it deals with finding your own person, becoming what you want to become, and the band itself finding our own sound and purpose. On the other side it can be about finding the light in the darkest of places, even if the solution seems dark in the first place (symbolically in the song that would be the crow and raven), the statement is that you must follow your own path and no matter how difficult it may be, as long as you keep pursuing you will find your own light. Fallacy is about drugs, anyone can figure out what that song means for themselves. Phantom is about me being a stubborn ass and doing what I'm going to do regardless of what society says. The other songs people can interpret however they like.
Crow Xp: What about Better Dead? It is quite emotional & heavy.
Tyler: I used to struggle with depression and anxiety. The song was therapeutic for me, it released all of these dark thoughts I was having in my most depressive moments. We ended up recording the song and releasing it in hopes that others who have the same kind of thoughts but don't necessarily have the capabilities to release them and let go of them by themselves could use my words and emotions as a release mechanism. That in my hopes, when they listen to it I can relieve them of those emotions after they've lived through mine in song. Now, I have no issues with depression or anxiety, I have cured myself through soul searching and alternative medicines. I believe that since I am living proof of that it can be better and possibly eradicated, I hope that those struggling with these illnesses can see that and never give up. The EP tells that story, it goes through all of these powerful emotions and ends with the song Crow; and we now know what that song is about.
Crow Xp: Your new album – Serenity – is scheduled for release on 08 Jan 2019. It struck me as being more mature and a consolidation of the essence of Saint Raven.
Tyler: Just wait until you hear the full thing! This EP is by far our best work and I believe we have completely consolidated our "sound". It is the most pure embodiment of our essence thus far. It starts with the title track - Serenity. Serenity conveys this unbalance, the loss of peace and tranquility. Hierarchy explains what made the loss of serenity possible, it explains the state of the world in a very poetic manner. The Unknown goes into this dark place, the parts of life that drag someone down. Although there are hidden messages of light in the song, it is relatively dark. Petrified is a statement, a statement about me personally as an artist. It is this wanting to be seen by the world, this wanting to share my thoughts and emotions with the masses. It's about not doing enough in life yet still being upset that the outcome you desire isn't being reached. It's about realization, that you have more control than you think, that you can truly direct your own destiny. It speaks of finding love, and to me that love that I am referencing is my love for music and my beautiful soon to be wife.
Finality is about her and me. It is deeply personal and talks about my old issues and my current issues with insomnia, but that none of that matters so long as I have her. The chorus goes like this "Why is it so hard to keep moving on, in a strange world that you, sing for me in dancing sunshine, at least I'll know that you're mine, you're mine". The song is the light at the end of the tunnel, the reestablishment of "Serenity".
Crow Xp: You write all the lyrics. They are beautifully deep and introspective… How easy does writing come to you? What triggers the process?
Tyler: It's the easiest part of the process for me, writing instrumentals and melodies is the hardest part. Writing has always come easy to me. What triggers it? It comes out of nowhere. It's usually inspired by jamming, I'll be playing my guitar, always improvising, and I'll come across something that just sounds dope, and whatever emotion it triggers or thought or ideas, I write about that.
Crow Xp: Do you write and just share or do you write in order to share?
Tyler: I definitely write then share. There's a million songs I never take to the studio, only the best ones are shared. But when we write in the studio, it is in order to share, so technically both.
Crow Xp: Back to Serenity… Petrified (the first single) was released last January… What kind of feedback have you been getting so far?
Tyler: Amazing feedback. We've gotten almost two million views on Facebook, one hundred and forty thousand on YouTube, and thousands upon thousands of streams. Nearly every comment is positive, we've been getting so many amazing fans, it's mind blowing honestly. We get people from all over the world: North America, South America, Europe, even Africa.
Crow Xp: What about live gigs?
Tyler: We play locally in our area, Salt Lake City, Utah. We need a tour bus and some more fans and hopefully we will be able to start touring in the future.
Crow Xp: About the other members of the band… Braden & Eric… Ravens or Saints? :)
Tyler: We're all a little bit of both. Although Braden can be a pain when he drinks a couple shots over his limit hahaha! They're wonderful members. Braden has been there since the beginning of Entomb the Wicked. Eric was one of the last members to join that band. The three of us started Saint Raven. I couldn't ask for better people to pursue my life goals with, we are all best friends and we fucking love each other. It makes the business process a hundred times easier when you're doing it with people that all get along really well, that's for sure.
Crow Xp: What’s your take on your generation? Any message you’d like to get out there to our readers?
Tyler: My generation is misunderstood. In the words of Holly Henry from her song Roswell: "Can you remember school? I can't recall anything but rules, the same white walls, they always made us watch some movie, and still ask us why we're always glued to our phone screens". This just about sums it up. The older generations think we are all idiots that make technology do everything for us and that we're lazy, when in reality we are in a horrible social structure where it costs too much to rent an apartment and be able to eat anything but top ramen when you're making minimum wage.
The generations before us completely fucked the environment and the economy for anyone who isn't a millionaire and now it's our job to fix it, yet by the time my generation gets into office it'll be too late because all they cared about was money in dying industries such as fossil fuel. Every generation thinks the one after them just won't understand, but we all don't really get it. Anyone trying to say that they understand how the world works, how the universe works, the nature of reality; they are bullshitting you because no one truly knows. It's very disheartening when all of these generations before us act like we're idiots yet we grew up with all the knowledge of mankind in our pockets. All of its accomplishments and mistakes available with a touch of a few buttons on a screen.
Granted, there are plenty of stupid people in my generation, but at least they aren't running the world yet. There's plenty of idiots in the governments across the world and I can almost guarantee none of them are 21. Just as there are morons, there are highly intellectual people in every generation. I'm sure Isaac Newton's generation was filled with unintelligent people but it produced him, didn't it?
Crow Xp: If I asked you to sum up your attitude towards life in one sentence… what would it be?
Tyler: To live it.
Crow Xp: Thank you, Tyler. Looking forward to the remaining songs from Serenity. By the way, thanks for that exclusive declamation of the lyrics for Hierarchy…
Tyler: Of course! Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me and let me puke words out on your website!