XS ROCK: Tell me about the latest band news? Any new projects coming out, live shows or announcements?
We are very excited to release our first studio EP, “Temperance” on Monday, June 1st. It’s a very moody project, with some of our best work to date. This release has been a long time coming, and all of us have been eagerly waiting to get this out there.
XS ROCK: So how long has the band been together?
We’ve been a band since 2016. We met at Keene State College our freshman year, and have been stuck with each other ever since.
XS ROCK: What was your main motivation for originally starting or being in a band?
Initially, Afterimage was a one-off band that was competing in an on-campus battle of the bands, just for fun. I’m not sure any of us had much intention of keeping it going. After the competition, (which we lost), another band encouraged us to continue playing, so we did. We’ve grown a lot since then, and went through some line-up changes early on, but we quickly found a solid crew and started playing very regularly.
XS ROCK: What is your music background?
My music background started off pretty lame, haha. My first instrument was trumpet, which I started playing in the fifth grade. Back then, I didn’t really listen to much music, either. The only thing I listened to was music from the Muppets. It wasn’t until high school that I started listening to rock and metal bands like Rush and Megadeth, thanks to the influence of my dad’s massive CD collection. It was a little change from “The Rainbow Connection”. I taught myself guitar in high school, and formed a heavy metal-ska band with some friends in the marching band. Weird stuff, I know, but people actually liked it! I taught myself the bass my freshman year of college, as we formed Afterimage.
XS ROCK: What image do you think your music conveys?
I’d like to imagine a squirrel wearing tiny-little squirrel headphones pulsating to the vibes of our music on top of a birdfeeder.
XS ROCK: What are your current music career goals?
I’m hoping to become so famous that I can start my own personal line of milk products. Why does Hood get to have all the fun? I’d experiment with all sorts of new flavors like peanut butter and cookies and cream. Honestly, the whole band thing is kind of just a springboard for my milk career. Rock may be dead, but milk will never be.
XS ROCK: Which do you prefer? Writing new songs and recording or playing for a live audience?
That’s tough, because they are very different processes for me. I really like writing new music, but only because I really want to play those songs live for people. So, yeah, I guess I like playing live more. You can express yourself more energetically in a live setting, and see the audience’s reaction right in front of your face in real time.
XS ROCK: What are your songs’ lyrics about? (What specific themes do they cover?)
I think we evoke a lot of despair towards the world and towards ourselves in our lyrics. Griffin, our singer and lyricist, does a great job with that, haha. It’s not that we’re all doom and gloom, I think it’s that we are just very reflective, and want to find weaknesses within ourselves and society and try to find a way to evolve and improve upon them.
XS ROCK: What is the single most important thing to you as a musician?
Expressing emotion in a way that can connect to other people. It’s a really cool thing to have someone come up to you and tell you how your music affected them in some way. It helps you understand that you’re not the only one out there facing the same problems. Wait, actually, no, I take that all back. The single most important thing is the crazy amount of girls and money I get from being a local musician.
XS ROCK: Do you have any outrageous tour stories from the road? If so, please fill us in.
One time a zombie Telletubbie came to one of our shows. I think it was LaLa. She was a nice girl and all, but I couldn’t get past the television in her stomach.
XS ROCK: What’s the strangest request that you’ve ever received from one of your fans?
One time a guy asked me to quit Afterimage and join his band that didn’t exist yet and didn’t have any following and was in a completely different genre than ours. I politely declined.
XS ROCK: Are your friends and family supportive of your choice to play in a rock band?
Yeah, extremely supportive. I don’t get it. They should be telling me to get my head out of the clouds and get a real job, but instead they make bootleg merch and share everything we do on social media. Like, come on, reality check, people!
XS ROCK: What advice do you have for new bands trying to get started?
Be yourself, connect with your audience, and play together as much as you can! Don’t be afraid that another band member might have different influences than you. Embrace that! That’s how new music is made! You like death metal but your guitarist likes the Grateful Dead? Guess what, you’ve just created the death jam subgenre.
XS ROCK: What are your favorite tracks to play live?
I really like playing our songs “Kingdom Come” and “Thy Will Be Done”, which are two songs that transition into one another. It starts off really slow, melodic, and jammy, like a Pink Floyd song, but builds to this heavy metal song with screaming and nice crunchy riffs. It takes a complete flip, but somehow works so well. I like to be like Jekyll and Hyde and completely go nuts by the time we reach the end of the song.
XS ROCK: Which band or artist inspired you to perform? Why?
Rush inspired me to be a better musician. Kiss inspired me to be a performer. I think it was something to do with how they started as a working-class band, but quickly became one of the most iconic bands in rock history. They put the work in early on, and it paid off.
XS ROCK: If you could design a dream tour for your band, who would be on the bill?
Oh, jeez, let me think. If we are talking current bands, I’d love to open up for Tool or System of a Down. If we are talking bands that don’t exist anymore, it would be Rush or Black Sabbath. And if we are the headliners, I’d love to tour with some local favorites like Parts Per Million or Time Wolf. Two bands that have a colossal sound, far too big to still be only locals.
XS ROCK: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment so far?
We opened up for Morbid Angel at the Worcester Palladium, which has a capacity of over 2,000. We didn’t fit the bill at all, but it was super cool to play such a monumental venue. I’m also really proud of all the friends we have made along the way. Some of my greatest friends have come out of this band.
XS ROCK: If you weren’t performing in a band what kind of career do you think you would have?
Well, I went to college to be a filmmaker, so I guess something in the film industry. I’d love to have my own cartoon series that appealed to both kids and adults alike. Kind of like how the Muppets used to be an all-ages affair, as opposed to the family-friendly version that exists now.
XS ROCK: What type of equipment do you use for live shows?
I totally stole my rig from Geddy Lee. I use an Orange Terror Bass head, Orange 4×10 cab, and a Geddy Lee Jazz Bass. I also use assorted pedals to get me distorted tones.
XS ROCK: What do you think of the current music scene?
I think that there are a lot of really talented bands out there, and I don’t think they are being placed on bills that would benefit them. If you look at the scene back in the 90s, there were small bills with bands that fit each other. Now there are 9+ bands on a bill, and half of them don’t match at all. So then the audience has very mixed feelings on the bands. It’s tough, because venues want to sell tickets, but I think it’s the over-saturation of bands and shows that is slowly killing the scene. All I know is that there are some fantastic bands creating fantastic music, but not getting the right exposure.
XS ROCK: For anyone that doesn’t know you, what would they be surprised to know about you?
I can fit over 50 cheese balls into my mouth. Ask Griff about that one.
XS ROCK: Is there anything that you’d like to promote or say to your fans out there?
Be safe and smart, please. We’ve only got one chance at life, and we don’t want to mess that up. You matter, and if you are going through tough times, please know that someone out there loves you. I love you. I mean it. Drink your milk. You need to build those bones up. If you can’t drink milk, I will soon be unveiling a new line of dairy-free milk in multiple flavors. I’m open to suggestions. Oh, yeah, and if you want to listen to our new EP “Temperance”, that would be pretty cool. No pressure though.
XS ROCK: Thanks again for taking the time to talk with us at XS ROCK!
Hey, thanks for having me. This was fun.
Afterimage band line up consists of:
Griffin Romprey – vocals
Brandon Curcio – guitar
Casey Daron – bass, vocals
Andy LeCuyer – drums
Jason Coburn – keyboards