Interview: Linda Battilani of Halflives talks Resilience, Being on The Road & Kellin Quinn

With their upcoming EP due for release next month, we’re anticipating a very big year for Halflives. They’ve already played shows in several countries, toured with the likes of The Faim and Courage My Love and will be popping back to the UK for 2000trees Festival this summer AND a possible headline tour! We caught up with lead singer Linda Battilani to get the lowdown on the new EP, plus what the rest of 2020 looks like…

For those who don’t know you, how did you come to be Halflives?
Halflives is the result of a new vision and a new identity that I came up with late 2016. We’ve been playing music together for years, way long before we called ourselves Halflives. The desire to play in a band was originally mine, and it started the day I found out about Paramore (back in 2007) and since then I worked on turning this dream into a reality.

You’re about to head off on a European tour with Icon For Hire and we know you’ve played A LOT of shows. What’s it like playing in so many different countries and what reaction have you had from crowds?
It’s awesome! You get to experience a lot in a very short amount of time. It’s also tiring as sometimes the drives are quite long, so it means you don’t get to sleep that much if you have to make it on time to the next city. But every sacrifice is worth it when you’re on stage and you have a reactive crowd in front of you who likes to get involved and sings along to your lyrics. It’s just priceless.

It’s not long before your EP, Resilience is out (March 13) you previously said that ““Resilience” is a record about getting lost and finding yourself again and the journey in-between. Each song explores a different step of the process in the following order: denial, anger, bargaining/self-questioning, depression and acceptance.” When writing the EP did you set out to cover these themes in your song-writing?
‘Hard to Break’ and ‘Snake’ were the first two songs I wrote for the record and right after I wrote ‘Snake’ I saw the whole picture. The whole journey just made sense and I saw rightaway how the story needed to be told. I wrote the rest of the songs accordingly and there you have ‘Resilience’.

Can you give us a one-line description of each song?

  • Rockstar Everyday: You want to lose touch with your reality and you wish you were someone else.
  • Snake: You’re boiling with anger and you’re craving for revenge. You feel like life hasn’t been that fair to you and you believe karma will set things straight.
  • Time Bomb: You self-question, stand between what is and what could have been and ultimately realise you’ve been wasting a lot of time.
  • One Bad Day: You’re at your lowest, you’re feeling so blue you’re laying on your bathroom floor desperately calling out for help.
  • Hard To Break: You realise you’re actually strong, your will is unyielding. You stand up tall now, finally strong enough to bear any incoming hit.

Where does your inspiration for songs come from? How does the song writing process work for you?
Well I always write about personal stuff and struggles. I have a hard time writing about something impersonal, it’s almost impossible to me.
Generally I know what I want to talk about even before starting to write the song. Some other times I might hear a new song on the radio and be like “damn I wish I was the one who wrote that” and it’s immediately a challenge to me: it gives me the energy that I need to just sit at the desk and lay down something new.

‘Time Bomb’, features Sleeping With Sirens’ Kellin Quinn, how did the collaboration come along?
We heard Kellin was looking for artists to work with so we immediately got in touch with him, actually with 0 expectations. I thought it was just another bottle to the sea. Five minutes later he had already replied saying the song was great and asking where we wanted him to sing on the track. I was so happy! 

If you had to pick just one song as your favourite from ‘Resilience’, what would it be and why?
I’d say ‘Rockstar Everyday’ cause it’s the one I started to listen to on loop, feeling so accomplished once I came out of the studio after having written it. And I very rarely do that with my own songs. 

Can you tell us what it takes to be a ‘Rockstar Everyday’?
I still have to figure it out myself, but most likely patience.

We know you’re fans of My Chemical Romance and that you’ve even covered The Black parade, who else inspired you musically? 
As I mentioned earlier, definitely Paramore. They’re the ones who inspired me to become who I am today. I’m so happy I can finally say this in interviews without fearing the comparison with them! So glad that the crazy “every female-fronted band is a Paramore wannabe” era is over haha! 

You’ve supported the likes The Faim, Courage My Love and soon Icon For Hire, if you could share the stage with any artist or band who would it be?
Well, since they’re back… My Chemical Romance! Who wouldn’t want that?!

You’re set to play 2000 Trees in summer, can we expect to see any other UK dates this year?
Obviously! We can’t wait to be back! 

What does the rest of 2020 look like for Halflives?
Except for a new record, a tour with Icon For Hire and hopefully a UK tour Well, we’d like to go back to the studio later this year to lay down a single or two and we’re already starting to look into options for new tours in the fall. It’s going to be a super busy year, provided global warming does not kill us all by then.

‘Resilience’ will be out on 13th March and is available for pre-order now.

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