Eye Empire

When talent runs in the family...  Corey Lowery formerly from Dark New Day and brother of Sevendust's Clint Lowery has joined forces with Donald Carpentier from Submersed, also a band who's seen some fair amount of success in the earliy 2000's.  Eye Empire's debut album "Impact" is now available.  I was personally very excited about this album when I first heard of it because the affiliation with these bands rhymes with cool in my books.  Eye Empire lives up to my expectations.  Get their album to discover their music or see them in concert live currently with Nonpoint and supporting Seether this coming October.  For more info about this band, visit: www.EyeEmpire.com
Interview by: Valerie Bastien
Valerie: Introduce yourself; what 3 words would best describe our music?
DC: I'm Donald Carpenter, lead vocalist of Eye Empire. I would say dynamic, honest & energy!
Valerie: Considering the band members' past with greatly successful Dark New Day and Submersed, what were the challenges of creating a new band that wouldn't get lost in its old identities?
DC: Honestly, I don't think there were any challenges, but  advantages when it comes to that.  We had the fortune during those times to develop some key relationships that help us to this day.  It's all relative and we are one with the process for sure.
Valerie: All of your other bands had great but fairly short lived success; what aspects of your personalities have pulled you together and why does it feel right this time?
DC:  Well a major factor to our "DIY" mentality is that we were all the driving forces in our previous bands and that is key to our identity as Eye Empire.  For me personally it felt right because I was "ready" for it this time around.  I needed to evolve and life worked its magic.  We gave each other our dreams back and are very humbled and grateful.
Valerie: Your debut album “Impact” just recently came out. It's a double album that contains self-released material on the first CD. What has been the defining moment of impact in your career that has allowed you to take your music to the next step?
DC: That's an interesting one as I feel it is still so early with so many big moments to come.  I can say that up to this point a major jump for us was finding our partners, starting with Steve Karas at SKH Management and then our incredible label partners at Bulldog. They believe in us and gave us the platform to start growing this band.  It's a long term plan that takes a unique belief and commitment and we're blessed to have them.
Valerie: The track Ignite is also associated with the title “Moment of Impact”; what is this song about?
DC: It's my play on an "end of days" landscape through imagery. I was working with an instrumental track that was unique to my ears.  I wanted to go to a different place melodically and note selection wise as well.  It created a haunting tone to me and pushed me into a direction of impending doom.
Valerie: Having spent some time in a small town in China last summer, I was really amused to read the title of the track Bull in a China Shop as I took it literally and imagined the bull surrounded by thousands of lovely bok choy jade statues, lol! When is the last time and what situation has made you feel like a bull wanting to destroy everything around you?
DC: Haha, well I guess we can all probably pull from something on a daily basis out here on the road.  What does irritate me though is a lack of common consideration out there nowadays. We should always consider those who ALSO live in space and time. I can get "Bullish" about this!
Valerie: Tell me about a song that is very personal and that you are very proud of.
DC: They're all personal in many ways but some cut deeper than others like Hopeless.  I am bi-polar and live in that fluctuating state.  I embrace it now but as I was discovering its ugly face throughout the years it made life difficult and painful.  I was in tears tracking it and I know the listener can feel the despair…. Mission accomplished.
Valerie: What song is the heaviest and what song is the most unique?
DC: Hmmm… heavy is subjective but I think Bull comes off the heaviest on the record and on the stage.  In many ways you could say it's one of our more unique tracks as well.  BC goes off the grid during his solo break and the chorus is a basic punch in the face!
Valerie: What song do you enjoy playing live the most.
DC: Honestly, I love them all! The connection, the release, the energy. That's our time with the fans and every second is magic. It's overwhelming.
Valerie: There are a few collaborations on the album with Sevendust members; why was it important to you to bring Lajon, Clint and Morgan aboard?
DC: Well, Morgan would sit in early on with Corey and Brad as they were jamming on ideas.  He knew half the record before we tracked it, so when we needed someone to lay down the early songs, it was a natural choice. it was an honor to have him be a part of it.  Clint was also involved early on and throughout.  He helped with some melody and lyric ideas on a few of the early jams.  LJ came in on a track called Victim and sprinkled some dust as well.  It was an opportunity for us to have fun with the brotherhood.  No red tape, just makin' music!
Valerie: You are currently on tour with Nonpoint and will soon be supporting Seether. That's awesome! What are you looking forward to the most on this new adventure?
DC: A change of pace a bit will be interesting, the Seether crowd is a little different than the Nonpoint crowd for sure.  We will work on a different type of set which will be fun.  We have a lot of friends on that tour…  I was label mates with Seether from the start and Corey/Sean go way back touring together.  Our buddies Kyng are on the bill, our favorite gents in the game. Sick Puppies, looking forward to some stage time with them.  What's not to look forward to!! :)

Valerie Bastien is a vocal coach, teacher, musician and freelance journalist.
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