Interview: Trophy Scars

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Trophy Scars is amazing. Seriously. Put these guys on your “must listen list” right now. Truth be told, I had only heard the name in passing. Due to my involvement with Happy Mondays I dove into the band’s catalog and fell in love with their sound. It’s this wonderfully experimental blend of blues and psychedelia and punk rock. It’s one of the most unique sounds these ears have ever heard and I am glad to have discovered these guys. If you’re looking for damn good music catch the guys tonight at The Wonder Bar. I caught up with Brian Ferrara to talk about all things Trophy Scars.

happy february

It’s this wonderfully experimental blend of blues and psychedelia and punk

Trophy Scars Is: (Band Members, Instrument Played):
Jerry Jones – vocals
John Ferrara – guitar
Andy Farrell – bass
Brian Ferrara – drums

The Story of Our Name: It’s kind of funny actually.  None of the past/present members even came up with the name, actually.  It was just a friend who came up with it who had played in previous bands with some of the members of Trophy Scars before we had ever started. He was originally going to play with us, but he didn’t purse music anymore, and we just decided to stick with it.

We’re based out of: Morristown, NJ

Any new music coming out: There’s no new Trophy Scars stuff coming out as of right now, but we are working on new material. I have been playing drums for a project that’s being mixed right now, called All Human. It’s with Adam Fisher (Fear Before the March of Flames / Orbs), who actually made a guest appearance on ‘Chicago Typewriter’ for Holy Vacants. He lives in California, while I am in NJ, so it was a different writing process with a lot of sending demos back and forth to each other to bounce off ideas. John has recorded all the stuff that was over done here in NJ, as well as mixing the record, and Andy plays bass on it. We aren’t too sure when it’ll be coming out just yet since it’s all been self funded to this point, but we’re aiming for sometime this year.

Photo Credit: Luke Berenton
Photo Credit: Luke Berenton

I read you guys started out as a punk/post-hardcore band, but your sound is so much more than that. It’s this wonderfully experimental blend of blues and psychedelia and punk (at least to me it is). Can you talk about who/what inspired you to expand on your sonic landscape and not just stay a hardcore band?

If you listen, it’s really been developing over time, but I think now we are all just really on the same page more than ever before.  A lot of that is that we are older too. We matured over time like all bands, and we also expanded our tastes in music/what we are capable of doing with our own music. We all got to see Roger Waters from Pink Floyd perform The Wall  together (twice), and it all just clicked.

TrophyScars_HolyVacant

You guys had a really rough period in 2007 when you, due to the cancelation of a European tour, you were forced to go on an indefinite hiatus. Was there ever a time you thought about throwing in the towel on the band, and what cause you not to? What was the most important thing you learned as a musician and as a person from this time period?

Yeah, those were really rough times. I think we were all in shock, and just really couldn’t believe it. Nobody had any idea of what to do, and morale was absolutely at an all time low. The thing that really lit the fire and got us going again was the Bad Luck Foundation, which was basically like a charity by fans. They really wanted to hear what we were working on for so long, and they’ve always been so loyal. Seeing that many people show their support and appreciation made us more inspired than ever. I personally always try to stay positive and thankful because of that situation and everything that happened after all the long years of hard work.

What is one of your favorite and/or most outrageous moments you’ve had performing with Trophy Scars?

There are a lot of favorite moments, honestly. I loved touring with Fear Before the March of Flames and getting to watch them cause they were always phenomenal live. Taking the stage and getting to play a sold out Nokia Theater in NYC was probably one the craziest moments.

For outrageous, it’s actually happened a couple of times – i’ve gotten physically sick while in the middle of playing! However, I have never stopped when it has happened. So, as rock and roll as it might sound or seem to be, it’s still not cool!

If someone read this interview and never heard you before, but decided to check you out, what song would you recommend they listen to in order to understand what Trophy Scars are all about?

Tough question.  I’d have to opt for something on Holy Vacants.  So, I guess I’d say either Qeres or Gutted. I’m a person who likes listening to records in full, so that’s always tough.

Trophy Scars performs with Goodbye Tiger and Long Faces at Happy Mondays at Wonder Bar – admission is 100% free.

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Bill Bodkin is the Owner, Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder of Pop-Break. Most importantly, however, he is the proud father of a beauty daughter, Sophie. He is beyond excited that Pop-Break will be six years old in 2015 as this site has come a long, long way from the day he launched in it in his bachelor pad at the Jersey Shore. He can be read every Monday for the Happy Mondays Interview Series as well as his weekly reviews on Law & Order: SVU, Mad Men and Hannibal. His goal, once again, is to write 500 stories this year (a goal he accomplished in 2014). He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @PopBreakDotCom
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Bill Bodkin is the gray bearded owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, he is lucky husband, and proud father to a beautiful daughter named Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site's podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites