Interview with The Great Commission’s Justin Singh

Justin Singh is the lead vocalist for The Great Commission a faith based metal-core band hailing from Redlands, California. The band released its second album in July of this year titled “Heavy Worship”. The album was produced by Andrew P. Glover and is being released via Century Media/ANGR Records. Media Mikes had a chance to talk with Justin prior to the bands performance in Syracuse, NY about the new album and the bands upcoming plans.

Adam Lawton: Can you tell us about the band’s latest release “Heavy Worship”?
Justin Singh:  “Heavy Worship” was released in July on Century Media/ANGR records. It took us 2 years to write this album. We had received a lot of labels offers after our contract had run out with Strike First/ Face Down records but, we were really waiting on god to pick the right label for us. During that time we were just writing music and lyrics that we felt would represent the band. We took time and sat down with every song to figure out what it was saying. We wanted to make sure that the music on the album was just as heavy as the message. That’s the reason we titled it “Heavy Worship”

AL: How do you think this album compares to the bands previous release?
JS: I feel like this album is more of us. The first album was written with the idea of what would we want to mosh to in heaven. It was of just a fun album that had lyrics that glorified god and was just heavy. With “Worship Music” we took the same concept as with the first album but we upped everything. The lyrics on this album are not just lyrics. We wanted the album to be catchy but we also wanted the songs to have meaning and to show that we live the lyrics that we are writing.

AL: What led you guys to sample lines from “The Boondock Saints” and “Dawn of the Dead”?
JS: It will probably sound weird but I feel god speaks to me through movies no matter what the films beliefs. I get so into movies that I start to put myself into the situations. I loved the line in “The Boondock Saints” where Norman Reedus’s character explains why they do what they do. Instead of taking it in the literal sense I took it as there are a lot of evils in our life that need to be killed in order to better ourselves. The other clip was from George Romero’s film “Dawn of the Dead” and I feel that sometimes as people we become dead inside. The first line of that song is “wake up” and it’s about waking up this generation from its mundane life. It’s almost like going from being dead to alive.

AL: Do you have a favorite track off the album?
JS: That’s a hard one. It’s a tossup between “Don’t Go To Church, Be The Church” and “Draw The Line”. Both of those songs mean a lot to me for different reasons. “Don’t Go To Church, Be The Church” is awesome because I feel like from a Christian point of view in this culture were involved in it’s easy to say “We are waiting for revival”. We as people are revivals so the song is about breaking down the walls and the mentality that a church is a building. We can have church really anywhere from a venue parking lot to riding in a car. We can really talk about things anywhere. We don’t have to go to a particular building or place. “Draw The Line” is awesome because even if you are not a Christian you can still relate to the songs message. We all have our own person struggles and sometimes we have to realize that we are the cause of our own problems. Unless we change ourselves our current status isn’t going to change. It could be anything from addiction to being in a bad relationship. It’s on us to bring the better out.

AL: This band has a unique stand on Christianity as compared to other bands in the genre. Can you tell us about that?
JS: I personally only speak from experience. As we have started to branch out and not only do Christian tours but secular tours fans have come up to me and telling me about how they have been told they are going to hell for having tattoos and piercings or listening to heavy music. I was drawn to this music because of its aggressiveness. Growing up I was just captivated by the music. I always wondered why we couldn’t do this for god? When we partnered the two together we saw what happened. There are a lot of people out there especially in the south and across the states that say if you have or do any of these things you are going to hell. It’s not true! Even though we love Jesus we are a very anti-religion band.

AL: Can you tell the fans one thing they might not know about The Great Commission?
JS: (Laughs) I am going to go through them one by one. Angela is the biggest “Star Wars” nerd! She and her brother actually go to “Star Wars” conventions. Victor is a huge Nickelback fan as well as Backstreet Boys and Nsync. Me personally I am the biggest comic book geek. I am really into Marvel comics. Our drummer Alonzo is from Costa Rica and he is really into samba music. He incorporates a lot of that stuff into our albums. Solomon our bass player isn’t touring with us right now because he is at home preparing to get married. As soon as we get back from this tour a few of us are going to be in his wedding.

AL: What are the bands plans for the rest of 2011 and into 2012?
JS: We have been on the road so much lately that our friends back home in California have been kind of neglected. We are going to take December off from touring but we will be doing a few festivals in California and possibly Arizona. In January we are going start pre-production of the new album and start recording in February. From there we will hopefully be back out touring.

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