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Shannon Livewell

An Interview with Set It Off

Photo Obtained Via Facebook
Photo Obtained Via Facebook

Set It Off is a pop-punk rock band out of Tampa, FL. They gained a following through vocalist Cody Carson’s YouTube channel rockmaniac89. They were signed to Equal Vision Records after having substantial plays. I was lucky enough to snag an interview with Dan Clermont (@Danny_Sio on Twitter) who does guitar and vocals for the band.

“Set It Off formed after Cody, who had always been involved with the local music scene here in Florida, got an opportunity to perform on stage with one of his favorite bands at the time while he was away in college,” said Clermont. “That just gave him the push to form a band. He contacted all of us back home and we were all on board. The rest is history in the making.”

Set It Off has such a different sound and they really bring so much passion and depth to their music. You get the sense when listening that every band member comes up with a different idea for a track and they all push and pull until the song becomes a melting pot of sorts.

“Generally, Cody or myself will get together with some ideas and put together the core of a song and present it to the rest of the guys and that’s where it gets refined,” said Clermont when I inquired how the songwriting process worked for them as a band. “As far as too many ideas being an issue, that can definitely happen but we are very open with each other so everyone gets a fair shot to voice their ideas and opinions to make these songs the best they can be.”

It seems like if more bands were to have followed this motto, there would be more amazing bands today. Set It Off seems to have great chemistry on and off stage, which really makes for a healthy recipe to withstand a long career as a band in the music industry.

“This Christmas” is the first song I ever heard by the band and it definitely threw me for a loop. It is so uncharacteristic of a holiday song that I needed to know the process behind how it was created.

“Anyone who knows us knows that we aren’t exactly the most conventional group of guys so when we got the offer to be a part of the Punk Goes Christmas compilation and were told we could write an original song we thought, ‘Why don’t we write something that brings Christmas into a little more of a darker, chaotic light that isn’t always thought about when talking about such a cheery holiday season?’”

A darker, more chaotic light is exactly what they got but it couldn’t have been easy to successfully reach that place, being careful not to cross any imaginary lines while still keeping it original.

The band was recently asked to record with John Feldmann, so naturally I had to get the boys point of view on this crazy honor.

“I feel like this is definitely a huge milestone for all of us on a personal level and career level. We did some writing with him out in California this past April and the chemistry between us was unbelievable. We haven’t officially started working in the studio with him yet but we are regularly in contact, sending song ideas and critiques back and forth,” said Clermont.

A band like Set It Off is so simply unique, bringing the essence of so many that came before them with a flare all their own.

“Especially with how the writing process is going for this record,” said Clermont, “We have referenced anything from My Chemical Romance to Lady Gaga to Whitney Houston in order to pull inspiration. I feel like keeping our influences that eclectic will help refine our sound as Set It Off.”

I couldn’t agree more with Clermont’s statement of the bands refined sound and style. They are clearly eclectic, unique, and chaotic in the best way and could make anyone a fan of the pop-punk genre. If you haven’t yet heard of these guys I’d listen as soon as you can with an open mind and turned-up speakers. As always, I’d love your feedback on this band and feel free to contact me if you are a local band looking for a musical review or promotion!