Q&A: 21 Gun Salute’s Jelle De Lange

After doing the Q&A with some big American bands, it’s time to give some hardworking local bands the attention they deserve. Starting with 21 Gun Salute, one of Hollands finest hardcore bands. Jelle De Lange, guitar, took some time to answer our questions. Enjoy!

Can you introduce 21GS to anyone that hasn’t heard of you guys yet?

21 Gun Salute is a hardhitting pissed-off 5-piece hardcore band in vein of No Warning, Terror and Dutch hardcore heroes No Turning Back. Based in the subs of Amsterdam, started out early 2008 and have been trashing stages ever since. We shared the stage with a wide variety of bands like Terror, Floorpunch, Skarhead, All Shall Perish, Death Before Dishonor, Slapshot, 50 Lions, Every Time I Die, Backtrack, Sworn Enemy, Good Clean Fun and many many more.

21GS has gone through a major line-up change. Can you tell me something about that?

That’s true. At the end of 2010 our vocalist (Kunst) and bassplayer (Tarek) let us know they didn’t have the time and the space to continue with 21 Gun Salute anymore. It’s a pretty big deal when 2 of the 4 band members decide to quit and we knew it would be hard to find new members who have the same ideas as us. Throughout December we’ve been searching to find great musicians to fill up the space left by Kunst and Tarek and we’ve also decided to add a second guitar player to the lineup too. We’ve found a new bass player and second guitar player in the form of Jacko and Patrick (both ex-Oceans With Tragedy) and Pablo (ex-Lady In Red and Setting For Disaster) will take care of the vocals from now on.

What are your plans for the coming months with the new line-up? I read you guys are planning a new record?

From the first moment the new lineup was complete, we’ve been working on new songs and making plans for the upcoming months. And it’s going to be a busy period! From the end of February until the first weekend of April we’ll be doing a sort of weekend-clubtour through the Netherlands and Belgium together with the dudes of Meet The Storm. We’re still busy filling up the last holes in the schedule, but we’re really looking forward to it. In April we’ll finally enter the studio again after more than 1,5 year and we will be recording our album. Like I said we’re writing new songs as we speak, so expect more brand new songs in vein of no Warning, Terror, Guns up and No Turning Back soon! And finally we’re going to hit Europe in May to play Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Austria, Belgium, UK and Italy. More details on this tour will be revealed soon!

Holland’s a small country, any ambitions to conquer the world?

Like I just said, we’ll be going to Belgium in March and the rest of Europe in May. We’re pretty excited to play more shows outside of Holland. The last time we’ve crossed the border for shows was in the summer of 2009 when we went to France, which was great.

What makes 21GS stand out?

One thing we keep reading in reviews is that 21GS fires off an amazing burst of energy on stage. I think that’s really a great thing because people get bored when a band just plays their songs and stand completely still as if their own songs don’t have any effect on themselves. We try to give 150% for each show and try to pass our energy on to the audience. Because let’s be honest, it’s freaking awesome to see people acting like crazy on songs you wrote.

Bands are trying to be more experimental nowadays, making up funny names for their new ‘genre’, trying to be original, etc. How do you guys feel about the current scene?

One of our mottos has always been ‘almost everything has been done already, so don’t try to be original but try to be great at what you do’. There are so many bands trying to create something ‘new’ and mixing different styles. But it seems like the only thing most of those bands do is to add breakdowns to metalriffs or even stack breakdown on breakdown on breakdown and call it a mix of hardcore with whatever. That’s not right…

Is there a message that you’re trying to get across?

Uhh… Not really. Just enjoy music, friends and shows.

Any other upcoming bands you can recommend?

Certainly! People have to learn that you don’t need to cross the borders or even the ocean to get great bands. First check out the bands in your own country, because we have a lot of great stuff here. So check out bands like Striking Justice, My City Burning, Noyalty, Swim Or Drown, Meet The Storm, Bloodtrial, All Heads Rise and So Called Celeste. I probably forgot a few, but you will find them yourself if you keep your eyes and ears open. 😉

Thanks a lot for answering our questions Jelle! We can’t wait to hear more songs and see you guys play with the new line-up.

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