Matt Heafy On Trivium’s Breakthrough Years: “No Band Liked Us”
It’s been well documented that Trivium faced a considerable backlash following their breakthrough in 2005, with frontman Matt Heafy explaining that UK press in particular overhyped the band to such a degree on their Ascendency cycle that they were then hated by many of their peers (indeed, even Kerrang! touted the Floridians as ‘the hottest metal band of the century’ on a magazine cover at the time).
And in a new chat with Machine Head’s Robb Flynn on the frontman’s No Fuckin’ Regrets podcast, Matt details how Trivium had become a “press band” in the UK for the “only time and place in our band’s history”, with this unique situation leading to “every band in the world” essentially thinking, “Screw these cocky kids.”
“As quickly as we got back to the States after the UK tour, all of a sudden, all of my favourite bands we toured with, they treated us like garbage, just being bullies,” he recalls (via ThePRP).
“I remember Ozzfest, some of the crew people were trying to cut us off with their golf carts and shoot dust in our face – little things like that. Or talking crap about us. One of my favourite singers of another band, I remember in a live review he was talking – and I printed this – ‘Get that Trivium shirt out of my face, get him a real shirt.’”
After enduring the backlash, Matt explains how things arguably got even worse on 2006’s The Crusade, as press turned on the band and started “ripping into” them, leaving Trivium with “no allies”.
“We became that band – no bands liked us,” he says. “I mean, we had a couple of allies, we had you [Robb Flynn], we had Machine Head, we had… I mean, in 2005, we had you guys and that was it, but we were nice dudes (laughs). And I didn’t understand it. I remember even having band guys tell me like, ‘I took a lot of crap for bringing your band out here.’ Just shocking stuff. Getting bullied from my favourite bands, and it’s something we never really talked about, but we remembered it.”
Matt continues: “It sucked. The stuff that we would never want to do, but we had some line-ups of questionable people that have maybe been disrespectful to other band members or crew people, and we had crew people that we later found out were bad too. So then we had a very bad reputation, like, ‘Those guys were dicks. They’re terrible human beings, they suck. They’re cocky, they’re arrogant.’”
He notes that the band’s reputation as being “actually really nice” eventually came around on 2011’s In Waves, noting that now “the bullying BS era” has thankfully pretty much gone completely.
“Now it’s just you see little dumb beefs, but nothing serious,” Matt says. “So I hope no young band has to go through what we went through, but it made us who we are, too. It made us strong, that’s for sure, and it showed us who our real friends are.”
Check out the full chat between two metal legends below:
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