Interview with Robbie Pina of Molotov Solution

Finding a band that has something different to say can sometimes seem like a dead end. But with deathcore outfit Molotov Solution, all the guys ever do is talk about whatever new and often controversial ideas they have. Much like on their 2009 album ‘The Harbinger,’ the Las Vegas-based band questions God, the media, constituted government, and more on their new record, ‘Insurrection.’ If you’re an avid fan of the group, it’s full of what you’d expect and hope for: full-on metal riffs and breakdowns, with high-powered and savage vocals. You may or may not believe in everything the band says, but all they ask is that you keep an open mind.

Not too long ago, guitarist Robbie Pina had a quick phone chat with Rock Edition. Keep reading to find out what he had to say about ‘Insurrection’ and the band’s upcoming North American tour.

In November, you guys will be hitting the road with Unearth, Chimaira, and Skeletonwitch. That sounds like a fun tour. Are you pumped?

Yeah, absolutely. Obviously, all of us kind of came up listening to them, especially Unearth. I was huge into Unearth. For me to tour with them now is exciting. It’ll be fun to be able to watch musicians and bands that I admire every night. I’m not a huge fan of Chimaira, but only because I don’t know their body of work. A couple of people in my band really like that band, so I imagine that they’re going to be great. And I’ll probably be watching Skeletonwitch every single night.

How do you think your band fits in with those guys? Will the crowds welcome Molotov Solution with open arms?

[chuckles] With our previous release, ‘The Harbinger,’ I would say probably not. With ‘Insurrection,’ it’s a lot more metal. We’re going to be playing a lot more of that kind of stuff. The new material is faster and groovier, as well as heavy. I don’t feel like that strays far from Unearth in any way. They still have breakdowns and melodic parts, too.

On ‘The Harbinger,’ you guys had a lot to say about the president, corrupt institutions, and religion. What are the main messages behind the new album?

It’s not the same this time around. It’s more of a personal album. We had other ideas for this album, but it just ended up being about us being pissed off and jaded at the whole fight to educate kids and raise awareness.

What specific issue was on your mind that needed to be voiced on ‘Insurrection’?

I don’t know about for Nick [Arthur, vocalist], but for me, I get irritated by people who keep themselves in a bubble and don’t want to think outside of it or educate themselves. People will commonly take what they hear on the news or what they are told, and they’ll run with it. I think that’s the wrong approach to anything. In school, they teach you to research, and I don’t think kids these days apply that whole mentality or logic to anything that they hear. Everything has multiple explanations. Do your research.

Back in the day, we used to be very preachy. We steered away from that later on. Talking about politics can be frustrating. I don’t even discuss politics most of the time with anybody.

Indeed. You don’t want to constantly set yourself up for a fight.

Yeah, I don’t want to go on tour and have a debate every day. That’s not my intention at all. A lot of people get their feelings hurt over politics. It’s a very touchy subject, just like religion. We just create the music that we want to create, and we sing about what’s important to us and what keeps us going. Some fans are disappointed by the lyrics lately because they feel like they’re not as factual or we don’t drop things like the Trilateral Commission or the Bilderberg Group. I feel like we’ve already done all that stuff, so why do it again? I would rather talk about other stuff or put it in a different way.

As you know, a lot goes into making a new album. What do you think the hardest part about making ‘Insurrection’ was?

The material. The actual writing of the music was difficult this time around. I normally write everything, but Jake [Durrett, drummer] and Richie [Gomez, guitarist] and I went to California this time to vibe off of each other, and it took a little bit more time because all three of us have different styles of how we like to write and what we like to write. That whole process was a really long process. It didn’t stop until we were actually done recording. We were constantly changing riffs, ideas, and how to start and end songs.

On your last full-length, you decided not to bring in a producer, but you did for the new record. Why is that?

Well, I guess because of how our experience went last time. I didn’t feel like I was really happy with the way things went last time. I mean, working at Lambesis Studios isn’t bad by any means. I just feel like it wasn’t for me. This time around, I wanted somebody with an outside perspective of the band, and that was Will [Putney]. He added all his touches to the album, and overall, I feel like Nick became a really strong, dominant force for the band now vocal-wise. Will brought out the best in him. I didn’t have to do anything. I just sat there and watched TV.

I’ll be sure to quote that: “Robbie didn’t do anything. He just sat there and watched TV.”

[laughs] I mean, it’s different when you have a producer. You don’t have to do anything, really. I mean, you do. You work hard with him, but when he was working on the drums, I didn’t have to sit there. They did their own parts and it all came out great.

I know you were using some eight-string guitars. What other new gear did you use on ‘Insurrection’?

Yeah, we used eight-strings guitars on about three of the tracks. We wanted to do more, but we decided not to. For guitars, we used Axe-Fx a lot. That kind of made everything a little bigger and helped blend the sound.

A few years ago, Molotov Solution signed with Metal Blade Records, but now you’re signed to BlkHeart Group. How are things going with them?

I like BlkHeart Group a lot more. We made the change to BlkHeart kind of before we even left Metal Blade officially. I had already known them, and I was already close, and I knew what they were doing with their bands, so I felt more comfortable to make the move. Us and Metal Blade didn’t really see eye to eye. BlkHeart has a great understanding and respect for our band, and they listen and help and don’t try to get in the way.

Did you run into a wall with Metal Blade? Did you not have enough creative freedom?

I don’t want to say too much about the Metal Blade experience. All I can say is that I feel like maybe we were just too young of a band.

Any other plans to announce before we wrap things up?

Oh, we’re going to Europe in February/March.

Sweet. Best of luck on the road!

Pick up Molotov Solution’s new album, Insurrection.

For the band’s upcoming tour dates, check out their official website.