It's Pop sat down with Richard Urban, Sénia Urban, and Taryn McLouglin, otherwise known as Angels of Hellfire, in Central Park before their show at Stonewall Riots in their hometown of New York City.
This is the first time the band has been together all month, Taryn took some time off for some personal issues, and Sénia’s been busy with side projects. As we sit, everyone is looking very casual, the girls expecially. Taryn’s in sweat pants and Sénia’s wearing glasses. We didn’t even know she had vision problems. It’s evident that AoH is like one big family. Again, this being the first time they’ve all been together, it’s clear that their children have been feeling the separation. As soon as Taryn and her son arrived on the scene, Sénia and Richard’s older daughter squealed with delight and ran off to play with her friend. The two of them chased each other around like little birds while the adults talked, Richard and Sénia’s younger daughter remained in Richard’s lap.
IP: We’re glad you could be here with us, Taryn, we understand you’ve had some personal loss to deal with.
Taryn: Thank you. And yes, I just lost my little sister. It was tough, but my family will get through it, and I’m going to channel my emotions into our music. (Sénia reaches out to hold her hand.)
IP: So, How did you come up with the name Angels of Hellfire?
Taryn: I don’t even remember. I think Katy may have been the one who came up with it.
Seni I sort of remember coming up with the Hellfire part… then I think Katy suggested the Angels. Kind of like Hell’s Angels, but not.
IP: Katy was the member who died?
Sénia: Yeah. Katy was an original member, who we lost to cancer a little over eight years ago.
Taryn: And let this be a lesson to smokers out there. STOP.
IP: So how long have the rest you all known each other? How did you meet?
Sénia: Well, Taryn and I have known each other pretty much our whole lives, and I met Richard about 7 or 8 years ago. I think I met him at NYU?
Taryn: Yeah, we’ve definitely known each other way too long.
Richard: And yes, that’s where we met.
IP: If you could play a show anywhere in the world where would it be?
Taryn: In general, or in a "I really loved playing there, so I wish I could go back" kind of way?
IP: Either one.
Taryn: Well in that case, I can’t wait to hit Copenhagen again
Sénia: I love love love playing in Manila, but I’d really like to play in Dublin, or Greece.
IP: If you weren't a musician what would you be?
Taryn: A hooker
Sénia: Shut up!
Taryn: What? A good one makes just as much money as we do now, if not more, and probably doesn’t have to work half as hard.
Sénia: I hate you right now.
Taryn: (shrugs) Fine. I would probably be a teacher or something.
Sénia: I already produce for other bands, so I’d probably just do that and PR.
Richard: Professional hockey player
IP: Did your family support your being a musician?
Taryn: I think my family was just happy I didn’t become a hooker.
Sénia: (shaking her head) I know my dad was just happy I actually did something with the guitar I bought when I stole his credit card. My mom… well, she’s another story. She would definitely rather see me at a desk somewhere.
Richard: My mother was an actress and she wanted me to become an actor but that didn’t work out. She doesn't mind my being a musician however.
IP: What are your rehearsals generally like? Do you have a set time each week in which you practice or are rehearsals more spontaneous?
Sénia: Get ‘em where we can fit ‘em, that’s what it boils down to. We used to have a set time, and when we have a lot of off time, like we do this year, we’ll make time to practice, make sure everything stays sounding tight.
IP: What has been your biggest challenge as a band and if you've been able to overcome it, how?
Sénia: I think we’ve had quite a few challenges we’ve had to face. When we were first getting started, finally moving up out of the whole local bar scene, we were signed, and we were getting real gigs that’s when Katy started to get sick, and told us what she’d been dealing with. It was a tough decision, but we finally chose to go on without her, she needed the rest. Then we found a replacement, but she bailed pretty quickly, and it was a really scary time.
Taryn: We weren’t sure if anything would ever come of what we’d worked so hard for, you know? We spent all this time playing at parties, and at skeevy bars where no one was actually listening, and we’d only played in maybe Toronto, Nashville, and Montreal at that point, when all hell seemed to break loose. It was almost symbolic, when Katy died; it felt like the band was dying too.
Sénia: But then I met Richard, who was having similar problems–
Richard: My band mates both mysteriously died within a very brief time period while I was out of town, leaving me with no idea of how to proceed.
Sénia: And like some kind of guru, he came up with the ultimate idea of joining us.
Taryn: Which sucked, ‘cause I had to re-learn how to play guitar.
Sénia: But we have so much more fun than we did when you were behind the drums.
Taryn: Good point. But that’s leads me into another challenge: Married band members.
Sénia and Richard: Hey!
Sénia: What have we ever done to you?
Taryn: Nothing, you’re too busy doing it to each other! That’s the problem. It must be nice to know you’re always gonna get laid on the road.
Sénia: You get laid plenty!
Taryn: Shut up. You guys have no idea how nauseating you are.
Richard: I think the biggest challenge we face is the childish bickering between the female members.
IP: How does the band get from one show to the next?
Taryn: We have a kick ass new tour bus and if it's a long drive we’ll take off right after the show, sleep on the bus and wake up in a new city. If the next show is like 3 hours away we'll just sleep in that town and leave the next day.
IP: How many shows do you do in a year?
Richard and Sénia: Too many (laughs).
Richard: For the past couple years, we’ve been playing about four shows a week with almost no time off. I have no idea how many that is though.
Taryn: All our of kids were born in other countries. At least mine was on our home continent, in Mexico. But Sénia’s girls were born in Sweden and Bulgaria.
Sénia: Yeah, I definitely don’t miss that one. The next one will be born in the US. We’ve been touring non-stop, I’m looking forward to this break. We’ll just be relaxing for the last half of the year. Then it picks right back up again.
IP: When the band's on the road what do you do to kill time?
Richard: Moon others, bone my wife, check out local attractions, bone my wife.
Sénia: Oh my God (she drops her head into her hands)
Taryn: Do you see what I have to deal with? (shakes head) Anyway, I like to catch up on my sleep.
Sénia: When I get some spare time (shoots a meaningful look at Richard), I like to hang out in the local parks, just chill out, get away from these two for a bit, spend time with our girls.
IP: Is there anything you would like to say to your fans before we go?
Sénia: Buy the new album!
Taryn: And there’s the PR. Your mom would be so proud.
Richard: You forgot to mention the tour.
Sénia: Oh yeah! I can’t think past the six-month break, sorry. The Hatebreeder Siren Tour! Four bands, Forty-two cities! Santogold, Blink 81, and Lambert will all be opening for us. We’re coming all over the world, so buy your tickets now!
By Juanito Cinco. Written for the city of Melbourne. Article ID 36863