Chrysalis played Di piazzas on July 6th, and By the Barricade was there to interview the band before their first ever national tour. These five musicians put a unique twist on alternative metal. You can find the entire interview below.
Yessi Burton – Vocals
Chris Norris – Guitar
Gabe Gallego – Guitar
Jared Sturgis – Bass
Billy Norris – Drums
By the Barricade: Chrysalis is hard for some to categorize. Can you explain your music in five words or less?
Yessi Burton: Sexual, creative, experimental, funk jam.
By the Barricade: What band inspired you to start creating music in this particular style?
Yessi Burton: My heroes growing up were Korn and Slipknot because they were so heavy. I used to think that that was the heaviest music ever until Meshuggah came along. That whole wave of 90’s Nu Metal has inspired us the same way those musicians had their fathers. The 90’s are a very underappreciated era. Everyone looks back at those bands as a guilty pleasure, but that was when some of the best music was made.
Yessi Burton: Usually I start with Gabe or Jered just writing a riff, and we’ll show it to Billy and his brother. They expand off of it before we bring it into the studio, and from there it takes on a life of its own.
By the Barricade: Why did Chrysalis record in different locations out of your hometown of Barstow, California?
Billy Norris: We recorded the drums for Focus on the Center elsewhere, and tracked everything else at home.
Yessi Burton: In our next production we’ll record with a vocal producer to get an outsider’s perspective on our vocals because we feel that’s one of the things in our music that needs the most work.
By the Barricade: Why does that need the most work?
Yessi Burton: The vocals for Chrysalis covers my full range. I sing high or low notes like an opera singer, in character like a Broadway singer, or heavy like a metal singer. It’s about coming up with a style that allows me to access all these nuances in my voice within one style.
By the Barricade: Was there any training to hone some of those styles?
Yessi Burton: I had a lot of coaching growing up. Patrick Teasley was one of my guitar teachers. I also had a vocal instructor from Victorville. Patrick Teasley is one of the best guitar players in California so it was an honor to carry on his legacy.
Yessi Burton: When Chrysalis first came about Myspace was one of the biggest outlets for new bands. Now that it isn’t a beacon for the music community it’s a lot more difficult for bands who have a similar fan base to get connected. Based off popularity alone we were able to get great shows really easily. Now that’s much more difficult.
Billy Norris: Music in general has changed a lot since 2003. Emo and scream bands were really popular, but it’s all over the place at the moment in terms of popularity.
By the Barricade: Is spreading the word online still a valid way of getting your name out there?
Yessi Burton: It is, but it’s easy to fall into the pattern of becoming a spam band. A lot of people are adopting the method, and it just gets saturated. If you look hard enough you’re always going to find great stuff.
Billy Norris: Also since 2003 it’s gotten way easier to produce music. Back then if you were able to put out an album it was amazing. Almost anyone can put out a great sounding album for $300 so bands are popping up everywhere. When we were in high school if you had a CD you were bad ass.
By the Barricade: What is a milestone bands strive to hit now that making a CD is so much easier?
Yessi Burton: It’s now the level of your touring. The amount of people you are playing in front of is a lot more important now.
Billy Norris: I know a lot of bands who put out an album who don’t do anything with it.
By the Barricade: Is there anything else you would like to say to the readers of By the Barricade?
Billy Norris: Thank you for reading. Come hang out with us at one of our shows.Haster (Let It Go) Album Review