On April 7, 2014, Virginian alternative rock band, ELISIUM graced Yabo’s in Fort Myers, Florida with an incredible acoustic set. This set, and the band’s own personal charm, stood as the perfect first impression to Southwest, Florida. Nate Crompton, front man of Elisium is here to provide some more insight to their music, their lives, and their world. Surely, you, much like all of those who have been them live, will not be disappointed.
1. So, how did you come up with your band name?
Early on, I was a big fan of Nirvana. When I was first thinking about a band name, I wanted something that would be a subtle nod to that, so the idea of "Elysium" sounded intriguing - a place where heroes went after a valiant death. Seemed similar to Nirvana in meaning, so we went with it. Then changed it to ELISIUM and applied for the trademark, which we now own!
2. Who would you love to tour with but have yet to?
We would love to tour with SO many bands. I think a tour with another 3 piece band would be pretty epic. Chevelle comes to mind. But some of our favorite bands are from Australia, Karnivool and Twelve Foot Ninja. We want to tour with a band that challenges us to step up our game every night.
3. Name something on your iPod that nobody would expect?
I actually have quite a few Winston Churchill speeches on there. We use excerpts from one as the intro to our electric show. Something about the way that guy spoke was mesmerizing...
4. What would you say about yourselves to those who have never heard your music?
I usually ask people to give us a chance, and promise to surprise them. I don't think people expect us to sound the way we do... we are different, and yet familiar.
5. You've said that Tool and Chevelle are two big influences on your music, who else inspires you as a musician?
The most inspiring things are the events that happen around you, and the experiences you live through. My parents gave me so many awesome opportunities to experience things growing up, and quite a bit of life has happened to me over the years... It's the stuff that goes round and round in your head, sometimes you find a way to express it that makes total sense. And when you do, you'd better write it down. :)
6. How does it feel knowing that your music can inspire people in their every day lives?
It's the reason we do this. There is truly nothing better than hearing people sing your music back at you. We've been fortunate enough to experience this on a level where a hundred or so voices are shouting our lyrics back at us. I hope it grows to thousands. The most rewarding compliments are the ones that go something like "your music helped me through this really tough time..." or "your music inspired me to take a major step in my life..." It's amazing. And terrifying.
7. Out of all of your songs, which are you favorite and least favorites?
Two of my favorite songs that we still play are "Surface" and "Phoenix". Sometimes as a writer you struggle to capture a feeling, and fall short for one reason or another. With both of those songs, I was able to really get down to it. And the feelings are fresh every time we play them, which is sometimes good and sometimes bad. But it's real, and that's what counts. Least favorites.. hmm.. we played the song "Silence is an Open Road" from our last album about 5000 times hahaha. Closed every show with it for a long time, I am not sure we'll ever play it again. Great song... total burnout. :)
8. Is there anyone you wish to collaborate with one day?
Roger Waters is my songwriting hero. I would give years of my life for a chance to collaborate with Waters. Even if no one but me ever got to hear it. Secondly to that, Eddie Vedder and Dave Grohl top my list. Nothing but respect for those two fine gentlemen.
9. What would you be doing if you were not a musician?
My last job was a video editor for the US Gov't. I liked it, but I knew it wasn't where I was supposed to be. I think if this doesn't work out I'm gonna fly planes.
10. You said on stage at Yabo's that you have had many crazy tour stories, including one involving El Paso? What happened there?
El Paso was intense. It was the ride OUT of El Paso that was the problem... we got stopped by border patrol and they suspected we were up to no good. They pulled us all out, the dog went all through our van, I was grilled extensively about "how many drugs are you carrying??", even though we were not doing anything illegal at all. It was crazy though, we had to sit in this little isolation room while they searched through our stuff. Rough stuff. So, we probably won't be going back that way any time soon...
11. Is that your craziest tour story? (If no, what is? -If you're willing/ able to tell, that is.)
Yeah, El Paso is up there. We've seen some wild stuff though.
12. Is there anything you'd like to add?
Just a thank you, to you and everyone who's given us a chance. Thanks for listening, and for spreading the word. We left our jobs and regular lives behind 10 months ago to chase a dream that we all believe in. With no guarantee of success, and no kind of back up plan. And so far, it seems to be working. Please keep in touch!
Thank you so much, Nate, for doing this interview! It was truly a pleasure, and I look forward to seeing ELISIUM back in town. Please be sure to check ELISIUM out on Facebook, YouTube, and Reverbnation, and their official website. This may be the first time you’ve heard of ELISIUM, but rest assured, it is far from the last time.
These are interview that I myself have done. They have not been found anywhere, they have not been done for me. They are my work.