The Callous Daoboys’ Carson Pace: “Loving The People Around Me, That’s What I Think Life Is About”

“If you’re not both feet in at all times, then your place probably isn’t in this band“. – Carson Pace

The Callous Daoboys’ have just released their new album ‘Celebrity Therapist’ via MNRK Heavy.

A contorting, witty, stratospheric collection of chaotic metalcore epics, it is a record as vast as it is viciously intelligent. As much a look at the personal misery that we put ourselves through again and again as it is an exploration of the human condition when forced through a mesh of breakdowns, it is as essential and extraordinary as heavy music gets. 

To find out a bit more about it, we had a little chat with vocalist Carson Pace…

How do you feel your approach to the band has changed between 2019, when you released your debut album, and now?
“Man, we were so green when ‘Die On Mars’ came out. We had only been a band for three years, and now we’ve been in it for six years. It’s crazy to think about how much we have sacrificed to do this full-time. I quit a full-time job in October to do this full-time. I know what I want to do and what I’m good at. It’s crazy to see how much the band’s commitment increased during that time. It took Every Time I Die and The Dillinger Escape Plan a long time to get to where they were, and they are our benchmarks as other weird bands with a cult following. We have a different line-up to the one we had on ‘Die On Mars’, and a lot of that comes down to asking if you can hack it or not. If you’re not both feet in at all times, then your place probably isn’t in this band.

“There’s something spiritual and liberating about knowing that this is everything you’re putting yourself into. Being able to share in special moments. I will not remember going to school for four years to learn how to tell someone to turn their laptop off and on again. I’m going to remember what this band has allowed me to do and what it continues to allow me to do.”

How has what has been happening around the band affected what you wanted this record to represent?
“A lot of this record was me trying to figure out what any of this meant and what it is was that I was doing. It was during the pandemic that I started thinking about it, which was also at a time when I got back together with an ex. It was an on-and-off relationship for years, and she saw me as a very smart and capable person and wanted me to go and get a proper job. I just didn’t, though. But she also worked a job she hated and would tell me every day why she hated that job, so why are you still doing it? I was watching her be stuck in a loop, and everybody around me was also stuck in a loop. I knew that I was the one who was going to break out of it. And even on top of that, there are behaviour and mental loops that I found myself getting stuck in as well. Speaking about it as a society, is a bit too big. But from a personal level, I can really dive in.

“I think I’m done with patriotism, and now I’m more focused on what is important for me, and just me, right now. That’s loving and caring for the people around me. I think that’s what life is all about, and I would much rather use my time for that. And every time I write lyrics, I feel like I am getting more naked in my art, and I don’t think that would happen if I wrote about broader society.”

And when you’re taking that dive into such personally mind-boggling things, that also extends to how far you want to push the band, both aesthetically but also musically. How does it feel to have achieved that?
“I respect all the bands that can keep within their sound and make the same record every time. I want to test the limits. I want to make something that I’ve never heard before. But coming out of a situation like what we have all lived through, you ask yourself, ‘Well, what am I?’ It’s hard even to remember how you felt in the past, and even listening to this album now, it all feels more relevant to me right now than when we made it. It’s really crazy how that works. I wrote these songs, and they are saving me more right now than they did when I was making them. And now I believe in this music so much that I am now setting out to make other people believe in it too.”

So how does it feel as you start to look towards the future? Having a batch of songs like this firmly under your belt, what does that mean to you when you consider the legacy of The Callous Daoboys?
“We’ve been a band since I was 19, and now I’m 24. For most of my adult life, I have been in The Callous Daoboys, which is a hilarious sentence if you think about it. If anything, I have always known that I have wanted to do music since I was little. I saw a Fall Out Boy video, and that was it. It’s crazy that it is happening. Now my dreams are coming true in real-time. And every time we play with a new or young band, I make sure to tell them that they have to keep on going. It will consume your life and sacrifice a lot, but you have to keep doing it. That’s what I want to be able to show people. That if I can do this, then anybody can.”

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