With 15 years as a wild rock and roll band under their belt, Hinder has since continued to evolve as a band with an unwavering talent. Their second single from the album Extreme Behavior, Lips of an Angel, shot to the top of the charts, lasting 41 weeks on the charts in 2005. They have since released three other successful albums, Take It to the Limit, All American Nightmare, and Welcome to the Freakshow. Now, Hinder is set to release its fifth studio album When the Smoke Clears via The End Records on May 12. The album will debut Marshal Dutton as their lead vocalist, following the departure of former vocalist, Austin Winkler.
While changing the lead vocalist can be a difficult transition for any band to make, drummer/founding member Cody Hanson says that Dutton has been involved with Hinder since 2009, which has helped ease the process. Before stepping in to become lead singer, Dutton spent many years working with Hinder as co-writer, back-up vocalist, and producer. “The transition has been going awesome! I’ll say that. He’s a great performer. I’ve always enjoyed watching him play, you know, in other bands. We used to go watch him play around town just because he’s awesome to watch. So, being in a band with him finally is awesome! It’s a super great feeling. We tried out a bunch of people and… I don’t know. None of it really ever felt right. I think it’s tough for people to come into a band that’s been around for 15 years now and just fit right in. But Marshall was already part of the family. He’s helped to shape and mold the Hinder sound into what it is now. He was already part of the band, so the transition has been pretty seamless,” said Hanson. “On the last two records, actually, if you listen really closely you can hear Marshall’s voice in there and he was already doing backup vocals. And whenever we would record songs, we would always get him singing first anyways. He would always do the tracks that we would kind of build the production around. We’d always do the main vocals later. So now we kind of get to skip a step and it works great!”
Hinder’s current lineup consists of Marshall Dutton (lead vocalist,) Cody Hanson (drums,) Joe “Blower” Garvey (guitar,) Mark King (guitar,) and Mike Rodden (bass.)
The band has always been known for their ability to produce sing-along anthems while still maintaining their hard rock appeal. When asked what changes fans could expect to hear in When the Smoke Clears (besides the obvious lead singer,) Hanson responded, “Any time you change the vocals, there’s always something new there. Besides that, though, I guess I wouldn’t say we’ve changed too much. We’ve been kind of experimenting with different sounds for quite a while, so our sound was kind of all over the place anyways. [laughs] But I think when people hear the new album, they’ll definitely recognize it as a Hinder album. We’re still the same writers and producers that we’ve always been, so I definitely think it fits right in.”
Hanson went on to share a story which demonstrated just how discernible the Hinder sound has become to the general public and music-lovers alike. “I actually just heard a funny story the other day, too, from my friend that works at a radio station. We had a couple songs that we were considering as our next single and he played it for some people at the office. He didn’t tell them who it was. He said ‘Hey, this is just a band. Which one of these songs would you prefer?’ And somebody said, ‘Well, they can’t release that first one… they might get sued because it sounds just like Hinder!” So even with the new voice, we have a recognizable sound,” laughed Hanson.
Throughout the years, both Dutton and Hanson have worn many hats when it came to their involvement with Hinder. The talented duo co-produced the bands’ 2012 album, Welcome to the Freakshow, through their production company, Back-Lounge Productions. What’s it like to act as the producer for your own band? Hanson explained, “Back-Lounge Productions is actually something that Marshal Dutton and myself started back in 2009, I want to say… back when we were working on the All American Nightmare album. We started producing for other bands and writing for other bands and we’ve really been doing it ever since. We built a studio here at my house in Oklahoma City. It gives us the freedom to take our time and really make the sound we want it to be. It’s definitely been a blessing. We don’t have to worry about time in the studio and, you know, paying somebody else for that time. It’s also right here at home, which is a great thing. Normally, like with our first two records, we were in Vancouver… and the whole time we just wanted to get it done so we could get back home before we had to hit the road. And now, there’s none of that. We can be focused and take our time and do it the right way,” said Hanson.
Throughout the period of change, it was actually the Hinder faithful that inspired the band to continue on. Appropriately, it was also their fans that helped to inspire their upcoming album title. “We actually ran a contest online through social media to have the fans name the album. Whenever we saw When the Smoke Clears, it just felt really appropriate with everything we’ve been through over the last few years. It kind of feels like we’re coming out of everything now and finally moving forward. So it really just fit us perfectly,” explained Hanson.
Hinder recently unveiled the official music video for their latest single Hit the Ground, heralding a new beginning for the band with Dutton as the new lead singer. In regards to the new track, Hanson said, “It’s kind of a special song to us just because of the lyrical content. Every member of this band has lived every single line in the song. We knew it wasn’t the heaviest song on the record so maybe not an obvious choice for a first single, but the hook was so strong and the lyrics were so real and so meaningful to us that it just made sense to kind of tell our story… to tell people what we’ve been going through for the last few years. We decided to go with that track.”
The band has toured with many notable acts over their decade-plus career– bands such as Mötley Crüe, Nickelback, Aerosmith, and Papa Roach. Hanson noted a few of the things that stood out to him the most over the length of their successful career. “Things that stood out to me was headlining our own arena tour. Getting to go travel the world and sell out arenas! You know, like, how many bands actually get to do that? That’s something that a lot of people only dream of and I can’t even imagine what the percentage must be that never get to experience that! So that’s something that feels pretty cool,” gushed Hanson.
Hinder is scheduled to tour across the country beginning in June 2015—wreaking that special brand of havoc that no one else can. “We’ll be starting up, as it looks now anyways, on June 6th. We have shows happening in May too, but June is when the tour will really take off. We’ll be out pretty much through the entire summer. We have dates booked all the way through November at this point and we’re still adding dates every day. So, yeah! We’ll be out doing it and working hard! We’re looking forward to it, for sure,” said Hanson. “We’ll also be dropping a new single within the next couple of weeks, so that’s exciting too!” he hinted.
Current 2015 tour dates for Hinder can be found on their official web page. The band will likely be adding more shows to the list soon, so fans should check back frequently.
While major lineup changes can often draw away a portion of any bands’ fan base, Hanson says that many fans have stayed true to the Hinder name, despite the changes. Hanson went on to thank the fans that served as inspiration throughout Hinder’s trials. “Thanks to the ones that have stuck around and supported us through all of this. A huge thank you!” said Hanson. “Without our fans, there’d be no reason to continue on but we found a lot of people that have stuck around and supported us and have just been great to us. And it means the world to us.”
Firing on all cylinders with a new frontman, Hinder likely has quite a few hits in the making. And considering all of the positive changes the band has made, along with some of the band’s past hits such as Lips of an Angel, Save Me, and Get Stoned… there is plenty of reason to be excited about that!