NY Metal / Guitar Rock Band NIGHTBREAK is a call back to the Garage Days origins of Heavy Metal, and I’m not talking The Glam metal, I mean the serious blood curdling howl metal of our youth. In the manner of Bands like early Annihilator, Anthrax, Beltway and Hawk, all out of the Great State of N.Y (my home town) these boys bring it forward, and lay it down.
Although unsigned, they are making a name for themselves and with the gritty “unfinished” appeal of Raw Instrument / Power Amp style, I am sure that they are not only a local favorite, but will make it to the big leagues soon. Making N.Y. the pioneering state of Metal it was known for “A.k.a, Sundance in Bayshore, Right Track Inn, Hammerheads and the legendary WBAB Radio.
Nightbreak is ignited by the spirit of true rock at its most perilous state. This New York outfit has come full circle in perfecting their unique sound of pure rock energy morphed with melodic and harmonious overtones to produce a style that has been long overdue. The band was founded in 2006 by lead vocalist/guitarist Todd Verni.
I had the opportunity to ask Todd and the band some questions via email, due to their busy schedule and the cross country distance, and we got some great answers that will give you some behind the scenes insight to the making of a great band with a positive future to rock the world.
What would you say is the unique quality of your sound?
NB: I think what’s unique is that even though we fit into the classic rock/metal genre; we don’t sound like anyone in particular. It’s vintage in a fresh all our own kind or way. We aren’t trying or want to event a new style. What’s most important to me is to just write songs that will stick in the listeners head and be memorable.
When you first started compared to now, would you say you have stayed true to you original band concept?
NB: Yes, and i pride in that. I’ve been writing songs in the same style and attitude since im a kid and would only want subtle differences in sound from record to record. Anyone that likes us likes us for a certain reason, and to stray from that too much i think would be counterproductive unless we wanted to aim for a totally different type of audience.
How has your sound changed or is it the same? Please describe your transformation-
NB: When i listen now to our first record from 2008 and compare it to our more recent stuff I would say it’s the same in sort of a nice continuation kind of way. Im my opinion i think the vocal harmonies are more refined and mature now.
What’s it like at one of your shows?
NB: That’s tough to answer because, so far they’ve all been so different and you never know what to expect. It really all depends on the crowd’s mood n vibe that night. Some nights we feel we can do no wrong because everyone is having such a good time and we feed off of it. Other nights the crowd might be in more of a laid back mood and just wanna see what we got. That’s fine but when im onstage im firing on all cylinders so I’ll try to get everyone there just as fired up!
How do your fans react to your performances, and stage presence?
NB: So far, I’ve noticed the ones that come out and will know certain songs; they will love it and let us know. Our last show I’ve noticed a lot of smiles from people who were seeing us for the first time. So that of course is the goal, to kick ass for the ones that come to see us and get a reaction from the first time “Nightbreakers”!
Have you ever had a situation where a fan got, well “kooky”?
NB: Um, too many to name over the years while I’ve played in various bands. Some in a good way like, girls jumping onstage and dancing for a while, to the more bizarre ones where a person was trying to have a conversation with Scotty (Nightbreak’s guitarist) in the middle of a set. All in all people have been cool so far with the exception of some strange email messages.
Have you toured recently, if so, where?
NB: No long tours yet, as we all work full time as well, but we are in the middle of some mini trips around and trying to work out some spots down south.
Being a NY /east coast band, do you feel the west coast metal scene would appreciate you sound?
NB: Yes , Double yes, The east coast these days doesn’t have much of an original rock scene anymore like it had say 20-25 years ago. It’s more of either a cover band/tribute band thing or extreme metal scene now. It’s also very evident in the online presence on our social media band pages. Most of the people into us as far as the U.S. are either from the south or west coast and im pretty happy to see that.
Has you band recently had any radio airplay?
NB: We are currently in rotation on some of the best underground unsigned artists stations as well as some syndicated mainstream stations broadcasted from all different countries. We are actually the only unsigned band on about 3 stations that play us regularly. Our single “Dangerous” has been in the top 10 most requested song charts twice this month on 2 different stations.
Who have you performed with / opened for recently?
NB: Many bands from the tri – state area, too many to name but more recently we opened for Tracii Guns in Queens and we’ll be opening for Trixter in the fall.
When you look back from where you are to where you’ve been, what drives you, and where do you see yourself in the future?
NB: Just the fact that I’m still doing this pretty much nonstop since i picked up my first guitar at 8 years old in 1984 to my first gig in 1994 makes me laugh at how fast time goes by. Some friends who’ve known me for many years have told me it’s cool to seen I’ve gotten recent recognition. What drives me is getting the positive responses and just the fact that i enjoy writing a song and watching it slowly come to life in the studio. All i can say about the future is that i hope to record the current songs i have written for the 3rd Nightbreak a.s.a.p. because i know it’s some of the best stuff yet, and im not just saying that!
What would you like you legacy to reflect, what do you want to be remembered for?
NB: Musically I’d like to be remembered most for being someone that stayed true to my roots, gave 100% effort in studio as well as stage and had a good ear for melody.
What was your favorite song or best gig and why?
NB: My favorite at the moment is “Wicked Angel” because it has all the elements of what i like about hard rock, heavy groove riff with big catchy chorus. It’s also really fun to play live.
What was you least favorite or worst gig and why?
NB: I’ve played some shitty gigs in my time but one of the worst was with an 80s metal cover band i was singing in a few years,, i don’t know what it was about the aura of the one show but the crowd was so quiet you can hear a pin drop. It was one of those nights that there was no winning them over no matter what. And that’s the most challenging thing about playing live because your performance is a reflection of the energy of the audience. Thankfully that doesn’t happen very often because for the most part people come out to see bands to enjoy themselves. I know i do.
What’s the message behind you music?
NB: I don’t like to have too deep of a message in our songs because life can be depressing enough at times , so i like to keep the meaning as fun and lighthearted as possible as a means of escape from the daily grind of emotion. Highly doubt you’ll ever hear a song with political content on our records. The overall message I’d say is to enjoy life to the best of your potential, take chances, take risks, be confident, and learn to say “fuck it” once in a while.
If you couldn’t do what you’re doing now, what would you be doing, and would it still be in music?
NB: If i couldn’t play or write music, i wouldn’t do anything musically besides enjoy listening to my favorite bands. Hey it might be a bit less stressful if i just do that actually HA!
Do you feel you are doing what you were meant to do, would you say this is your life’s work?
NB: Although there isn’t a great deal of livelihood for most musicians these days, fulfillment of the soul is most important to anyone’s well-being as long as we are alive. I enjoy many other things like working out, baseball, boxing , but as long as i remember , being able to play , write , and perform has come very naturally to me, so I’d say it’s what im supposed to be doing no matter if it made me Thousands or just one penny.
I would like to say thank you to Nightbreak for taking time to get to this interview, please visit their online sites and see what Rocking N.Y. City!