Five and Five: Eye Empire

Eye Empire is on a path of destruction. As the appropriately titled “Bull in a China Shop”, the Empire is hellbent on tearing up stages across the country. Their debut album Moment of Impact channels years of experience in the music industry and frustration into a 42 minute opus.

Eye Empire is:

Donald Carpenter – Lead Vocals

B.C. Kochmit – Guitarist

Corey Lowery – Bassist

Ryan Bennett – Drummer

Before Eye Empire made their way to the East Coast for a swing of shows, I had an interview with frontman Donald Carpenter.

Part I:

CFW: 1. How did you come up with the band name?

DC: It’s a dreaded process.   We liked the word “Empire” and toyed with some different ways to play off it.   I think we came out alright.

CFW: 2. What artists/bands/songs influenced you?

DC: First and foremost, I would have to say Soundgarden followed closely by Pantera.   The raw emotion and energy of both bands was something that I gravitated to for sure. Chris (Cornell) will always be the bar by which I measure myself…keeps me humble and working hard to get better.

CFW: 3. What are you listening to right now?

DC: Honestly….Eye Empire, haha!   We are so focused and consumed right now that it’s hard to keep up with a lot of stuff. Our boys in Kyng have to be my favorite new band for sure, listen to them often. Imogen Heap & Cornell’s Songbook have been spun recently.

CFW: 4. What has your favorite show/performance been as a band?

DC: Still a little early to call that one I think, but I can say that every show has its moments.   We are out here building this thing face to face and it has been liberating for sure.   I feel there is a real connection growing out here and that means a lot.

CFW: 5. If I want people to remember one song from our band it would be…

DC: I plead the 5th on that one.   I never got into this to be remembered for one song.   Great bands make great songs and build a catalog of work over a hard fought and self-sustaining career. That’s what I want to be remembered for.

Part II:

CFW: 1. You guys have re-released Moment of Impact once for the artwork and once for national release featuring three new tracks and your fans have bought all of the versions in some cases. How does it feel to have such a dedicated fanbase after all of these years?

DC:   It’s humbling and keeps it in perspective.   It’s been a little confusing, but we are trying to find a new way and we needed to be creative in coming up with a way to give the fans something to help build this with.   We also needed to feed the hunger and give us the time to figure this out and the funds to keep it moving. I can tell you that that process is not over; we are still putting this thing together. It’s going to be very gratifying to share it with all of those who have supported us so much!

CFW: 2. I know that your band has been recently tracking songs in a mobile studio. How soon can we expect new Eye Empire music and how cool is it that you’re recording ideas directly from the road?

DC:   Our physically distributed/radio backed release is slotted for sometime in May.   We will be adding 5 new tracks to that release and incorporating them into our live shows immediately.   It’s awesome to have the ability to run and gun. It’s going to be key in keeping new material out there for the fans.

CFW: 3. I know “I Pray” has been well received across the country, but do you plan on releasing any other singles from Moment of Impact?

DC:   We have at least 3 in our sights and if we get that far down the line, then who knows.   The key is getting motivated radio representation involved and active.   We have that in place now and will initiate that towards the end of March/early April.   Very excited!

CFW: 4. What have you learned both from being on a label and being on your own about the business and after being on both sides of the fence, what do you prefer?

DC:   What happens is that you get back to the basics, the fans!   Our experience does help but in the end it’s uncharted territory and the business is changing no matter what side of the fence you’re on.   In the end, we want the fans of our music to decide our fate.   We prefer the fans!
CFW: 5. What does “The Vocal Ninja” have to say to the EMURGers that continue to support you and what do you have to say to your Empire?

DC:   #LoveRespectSupport! Can’t thank everyone enough for supporting us here in the early stages and look forward to sharing every little success along the way with everyone.   Know that it is appreciated and will be reciprocated tenfold!

I’d like to personally thank Donald Carpenter for interviewing with EMURG. He’s as dedicated to the fans of the Empire as the fans are dedicated to promoting the band. It’s that kind of dedication that make the artists on EMURG as great as they are and Carpenter’s humility and grace are refreshing in a world of cantankerous rockstar personalities. You can find out more on Eye Empire’s Facebook, Twitter, and Reverbnation.