Originating from Modena, Italy, Your Own Decline is a “random, rockin’ metal” outfit ready to work their way from the ground up. Preaching a message of perseverance and self-belief, they are firm advocates of writing for the sake of passion, and as an expression of personal identity. The title track of their 2015 EP, Stay True To Yourself, is perhaps the clearest manifestation of these ideals; the lyrics tell a story of hope – lost and regained – and urge fans to rebel against the binding monotonies of life. After years of individual experience on the Italian alternative music scene, the members have now pooled their expertise into one cohesive act, ready to take the business by storm. In this interview, the band discusses their early work, the stories which lie behind their tracks, and the struggles faced by modern up-and-coming musicians.
Natalie Bolderston: Do you feel that you fit into one particular genre? Or do you take inspiration from lots of genres?
YOD: The answer to the first question is “actually no” :D. In our music career we always tried to find a correct definition for our genre, but we never succeeded because we have so many different influences. Only one genre could not fit them all.
NB: What made you want to start a band?
YOD: The passion we all have for music; that’s definitely the main reason we started a band, and that’s what keeps us going forwards – along with friendship of course.
NB: What bands or artists are your greatest influences?
YOD: Every one of us loves many different bands, but if we had to sum up the ones that we took inspiration from, they should be Avenged Sevenfold, Bring Me The Horizon, Atreyu, Protest The Hero, and Destrage.
NB: If you had the chance, who would you like to collaborate with?
YOD: Destrage for sure! They are one of the most creative and talented bands we’ve come to love, and it would be great to have a collaboration with them.
NB: As an Italy-based band, have you ever written in your mother tongue? Would you like to record in Italian as well as English?
YOD: Actually yes, we have written in Italian before. With our previous project – except for our debut album in 2009 that was in English – we released a 6-track EP in 2010 and a 10-track album in 2012, both in Italian. We really liked it; at that time we felt that writing in Italian was the right way to express our music. Now our genre has “more than slightly” changed, and we feel that the music we play, sung in Italian, would sound quite weird! So, the answer to the second question is “no”, we’ll stick to writing and recording our songs in English, at least for now :).
NB: Your first single, Stay True To Yourself, is all about remaining faithful to your dreams and your own personal identity. Is this written from personal experience?
YOD: Absolutely yes! Our personal experience is always the centre of our songwriting; we take inspiration from it to put our story and our individual stories into the lyrics of the songs.
NB: The music video for Stay True To Yourself seems to follow a protagonist going through some kind of madness or frustration. What is the story behind this video?
YOD: We wanted to tell the story of a man who is overwhelmed by the repetitiveness and the flatness of his life, then he jumps into a journey that leads him to understand that he has to take back the control over his life. Shortly speaking, it’s an interpretation of the lyrics of the song: when something or someone is trying to keep you back from what you really are and what you deserve to be, you have to react and stand up for yourself.
NB: What made you decide on “Your Own Decline” as the band name?
YOD: This is funny, somehow: we had so many brainstorming discussions with tons of band names before we came up with the final decision, and actually “Your Own Decline” wasn’t even on that list! We wanted something that could describe well what we feel we have become as a band, and we decided to take a piece of the lyrics of our title track Stay True To Yourself, where it says: “…you mustn’t be the advocate of your own decline…” and suddenly we all agreed that it should have been the band name!
NB: As a fairly new band, has it been difficult to get noticed? What would you say to other bands in a similar position?
YOD: Well yes; it’s not easy to get noticed because today the music scene (especially metal scene) is over-saturated. Everyone is trying to carve out his little space on the market. Our advice is to stay honest, humble, and true – to keep working hard on music you like to write, not because it’s fashionable, but because it is what you love to do.
Hear more from Your Own Decline: The band’s 2015 EP, Stay True To Yourself, is available from their online store (where you can also find official merchandise), and from iTunes. You can also keep up with Your Own Decline via Twitter (@yourowndecline) and listen to selected tracks via their YouTube channel.
(Featured image credit: Taken from bigcartel).