Jacob Hennessy (JH): I’m the lead vocalist (cleans and screams), and I also play synth on occasion. I became the lead vocalist after various member changes, after doing strictly keyboard and back-up vocals for about a year.
Louie Hennessy (LH): I play the drums because I like to beat stuff up to take out my anger.
RMM: And you’re band name, please? Why that name? Have you used other names before?
JH/LH: Our band name is Yours to Take. This name came about in 2008 in the MySpace days. It doesn’t really have a meaning, we just thought it sounded cool at the time and we’ve never had another name.
RMM: The city you’re in?
JH/LH: London, Ontario!
RMM: Sometimes, there are fate-filled histories of bands meeting . . . so, what in the great big cosmos brought you guys together? What keeps you together?
LH: It’s Louie Hennessy speaking, just to clarify before this long-ass story. Jacob and I are cousins, and have been for 18 years (for real). Jacob played piano and I played drums so I thought it would be cool to just start jamming some ideas. At the time, I was a big hardcore fan, Jacob was more of a punk fan (Green Day, the Offspring, etc.) so we kind of wanted to go for a pop-punk/hardcore sound. I knew Tom from my math class in grade 10, so we got him on guitar. Jacob knew our first vocalist (strictly cleans), Jake, from his grade 9 geography class. Long story short, we got together and jammed a 3Oh!3 cover (embarrassing) and liked how it sounded. So we started writing some originals and played our first show on April 23, 2010, at the Music Hall Lounge. After this show we realized we would sound a lot better if we added a bassist. Tom (guitar) was neighbours with a guy from our high school named Brycen, who had just started playing bass. We added him and played a few shows and then decided again that we wanted to add another member, a guitarist, to create a more technical sound. Tom, Brycen, and I knew Luke from our school as well so he came out to a few practices and we liked what he was doing so this has been the lineup ever since!
RMM: What’s a random fact the public should know about the band before they have a listen?
LH: Well, I always think it’s funny when people go through my iPhone and see that the majority of my music is rap. It’s just something that most people wouldn’t expect from the drummer of a hardcore band.
JH: I guess, if anything, I’d want people to know that we’re not as serious or pissed off as our music might portray us as. It’s a rare occasion (maybe if someone died) when we’re not fucking around with each other or other people.
RMM: Who are some influences that made you guys pick up your respected instruments and why?
JH: I was basically forced into piano at a young age (classical lessons), but I quit after graduating Grade 7 (of piano lessons). I took what I learned from that and applied it to the earlier days of this band with keyboards. When it was time for me to step up and become the lead vocalist, my biggest influence at the time was definitely Mike, from The Devil Wears Prada.
LH: When I was around six years old, I would gather a bunch of boxes and shit and beat them up with pencils, trying to be a drummer because I had seen my uncle play drums. I would go with my uncle to his band’s practices. When I was seven my uncle was sick, and was in and out of the hospital constantly. When he died, I was seven years old and he left me with one of his drum sets. Since then, I’ve played the drums (emotional rant over).
RMM: What were the first record(s) you bought?
JH: Green Day’s album, Dookie.
LH: The first album I received as a gift was a Backstreet Boys album when I was like, four years old. But I bought myself my first CD in grade six; it was Alexisonfire’s self-titled album.
RMM: You guys are just breaking into the scene in London, Ont. What are some live tips you’ve earned since you’ve been playing? Any horror stories?
LH: Live tips; I’d have to say go as crazy as possible because the crowd feeds off your energy. If you’re lame and not moving around, the crowd will be the same. But if you put on a good show, the crowd will react to that and get more into it. As for horror stories, I’d have to say having my snare drum fall off its stand mid-breakdown at a house show we played with Depths and Bloodred back in November 2010. Either that or just the fact that when we played a show with We Came as Romans, Upon a Burning Body, and In Fear and Faith, and we started our set off with our 3Oh!3 cover . . . big mistake.
JH: As far as live tips go, Louie said it best. Just get into your songs and really try to have fun (corny, I know.). It does show through and the crowd loves having something to watch. When it comes to horror stories, I have been pretty lucky so far! However, I would call our early-days of shows horror stories in themselves. A couple of awkward live performances, but hey, it’s all part of growing as musicians. I am really happy with the improvements and changes we have been making in the past years, and I look forward to the future with YTT.
RMM: Any local musical heroes?
JH/LH: Searching for Satellites is definitely one of our inspirations. Their music is just so fuckin’ catchy. We try to write choruses that can stick in our listeners’ heads like theirs do. Another local band that we really dig is Lifestory: Monologue. Their music is so unique and whenever we listen to it, we want to write really weird, creative music.
RMM: What should the masses expect at a live show? How would you describe your set?
JH: Expect something different, to put it simply. We really try to create our own sound, and get a decent message across to kids through our lyrics. Our set is quite interesting, if you ask me. It can go from heavy-ass aggressive songs, to something more on the catchy side. We hope to be offering something distinct and recognizable, so that when someone comes across our music and likes what they hear, they really like it.
RMM: Who would be on your dream tour? What would you name it: THE _____________________ TOUR . . . .
LH: I’ve thought about this a lot actually. So here it goes: Rage Against the Machine, Stray From the Path, Fall City Fall, and Yours to Take. It would be called the Rage Against the Path tour.
JH: Hands down, this would be the line-up of my dream tour: August Burns Red, Stray From the Path, Senses Fail, Enter Shikari, and Yours to Take. I think all of these bands have something different to offer. Totally different sounds and styles, plus I am a huge fan of every one. Playing with any or all of these bands would be an honor; therefore I would be set on calling it the Honor Tour.
RMM: What’s the smallest/biggest show you’ve played?
JH/LH: The smallest show would have to be back when we were playing Supernova shows. We got put on for a set time of 12:20 a.m., there were about ten people in the crowd. It was still fun, but it was a ridiculously small audience. The biggest show we’ve played was when we opened for We Came as Romans at Call the Office, which is an extremely small venue here in London, and there had to be at least 200 people there. It was insanely packed, but it was so fun to play.
RMM: What’s the scene like in London?
LH: There’s so much I could say, so I’m just gonna focus on the positives of the London scene. In London, there aren’t a lot of people that are willing to pay and go out to see a show, for whatever reason. However, the kids that do go to shows, love going to shows, and we see familiar faces at nearly every show we play. The ones that pay to come out time and time again are really what make this scene fun to be a part of, because after so many times of seeing us open for various shows, they start to understand our music and get into it more and more each time.
JH: The turnout is never really impressive around here for local shows, which makes me appreciate the people who do pay to see us that much more. It’s disappointing to see the scene really going to shit in London, but I don’t think that all hope is lost. Perhaps, with more time and more bands introducing themselves, we will see some more support!
RMM: What music should die and go away?
LH: I think every genre requires some sort of talent, even dubstep. . . . I could never put together the layers and layers of synth to create one of those songs; although I don’t really listen to it, I can respect the talent. However, this fucking ’Gagnam Style’ song really needs to fuck off – I can’t stand that shit. Also, since when are boy bands cool again? What’s up with this One Direction shit? Sure they can sing well, but come on, boy bands are so ’90s.
RMM: What’s the future hold for the band in two years, five years from now?
JH: More shows, more touring, and a lot more music from us! I can honestly see us getting somewhere with this band, and, of course, I hope for that, so I’m just sticking with the good ol’ saying: “Patients is a virtue.“
RMM: And lastly, here’s a theoretical question: You guys break in a huge way – radio play, gold records, selling out shows in Rio, Thailand, Europe. With that much insane success what would your backstage consist of? What’s in the tour rider?
LH: Hmm . . . for backstage: spaghetti, sushi, onion rings, and many assorted beverages. A lot of comfortable couches and a TV with every game console from N64 and up.
JH: A hot tub, a pinball machine, endless amounts of chips and dip, tons of video games, a pair of Sokem-Boppers for everyone in the band, and Champaign!