Guitarists Matthew Weed & Eric Jernigan Detail Their Dream ROSETTA Tour & Setlist
We recently interviewed Rosetta guitarists Matthew Weed & Eric Jernigan about their new album, Utopioid, and the post-metal subgenre, which you can check out by clicking here. Before wrapping up the conversation, we asked the two about their dream tour and setlist alike the previous articles we've done with Marty Friedman, Cattle Decapitation, Opeth, Periphery, Clutch, Between the Buried and Me, and Devin Townsend. Check it our below.
What’s a band you have yet to tour with that is on the bucket list?
Matt: I really like that new Cloakroom record and I think those dudes are super cool and I’d love to tour with them. What’s important to me when touring is good relationships and keeping things low key. And not just appreciation for your connection with people through music, but also just a sense of we are a bunch of weirdos traveling together, let’s find real, interesting things to do and experience them together to build family bonds. If you don’t know people already, it’s hard to predict how that element of touring will go, besides from what you can tell through people’s music.
Eric: I’ve expressed a hope to do shows with Inter Arma down the road. But if we’re shooting for the stars here, I got to know a couple of the guys from Gojira because they were coming into a cafe I managed for a long time when they were recording their record right down the street. It was cool to shoot the shit with these dudes that I regarded as rockstars for a long time and learned that they're just dudes that shred guitar, hang out, and eat vegan sandwiches. And then they got me guest listed for their show at Terminal 5 in Manhattan. I had seen them once before at a festival, but seeing them at a headliner show was actually amazing. So I'll say Gojira, Rosetta, Inter Arma 2018.
What’s a group you’ve previously toured with that you’d like to again?
Matt: It's funny because Rosetta hasn't actually toured with that many bands. And the bands that we have made deep connections with on the road aren't around anymore. Like Fight Amp for example is a band we toured with that aren't active anymore. So it does feel like something's missing that you don't have the ability to go back and do that with those people again. That's a bit of a bummer.
Eric: There has been a long history of Rosetta touring as a solo headliner through DIY circuits over the years. But it is true that many of the bands that Rosetta toured with before I joined are long gone now. We got along so well with North and we respect their musicianship and attitude so much that we really wanted to do something in the US. Not only were they down to do it, but they are accommodating our needs. We flew to their hometown and are using their backline. There's a sense of camaraderie and recognition of insanity in the pursuit. When you can share that with someone else, it is very special. It's completely illogical to give up your life at home to go do this. Maybe you'll play to 75 people or if you're lucky it will be 200 people. There will be a show on this tour where there will be 20 people there and we all know that, but when you have eight of your best friends rolling in the van with you, there's almost nothing better than that.
If you had to pick only one song from each album to play in your setlist, which song would you choose?
Matt: The Galilean Satellites – Probably the song “Europa” because I think that encapsulates a lot of what was special about our vision compared to other bands of a similar style. I have a soft spot for that song because of the stuff that actually ended up on albums, that’s the earliest artifact that we have. I think BJ’s drumming in that song is completely ridiculous and I think that’s maybe the main thing that I love about it. When we did that song, we had a sense of deep freedom and experimentation.
Matt: Wake/Lift – “Lift,” which is a three part suite. I think I have some nostalgia about that because we haven’t played that live since maybe 2009. Most of the rest of the album is still in live rotation, so I miss playing that one.
Matt: A Determinism of Morality – Probably the title track, the last one on that album. Again, that might be a nostalgia thing because we haven’t played that track since becoming a five-piece, although we intend to put it back in rotation at some point. It’s actually probably the least technical track on that record, but it’s also really fun to play because it’s a banger and everybody always seems to get excited and stage dive during it.
Matt: The Anaesthete – I think the first track “Ryu / Tradition” on that one because it may be my personal favorite song that we’ve ever written. That is still in the live rotation and something I’m really proud of.
Eric: Quintessential Ephemera – We played that whole album all the way through a lot the year it came out. I love playing “(Untitled II)” because it’s high energy and last summer in Europe we opened a lot of sets with that song and it’s cool because people are expecting this 105 BPM experience and we open with a dare I say punk feeling song. And the ending is really sick to play with this heavy back and forth between two chords.
Eric: Utopioid – Tonight is the third time we’re playing any of these songs live, but so far “King Ivory Tower” is really fun to play. We’re getting really good response from the crowd so far. It was meant to be played live.
What countries would you like to hit on your dream tour?
Matt: This is what we talk about all the time.
Eric: What has been on our list the longest, which we haven't achieved, is being able to do South America as a big tour. Columbia, Chile, Argentina, and Brazil are right at the top. It's hard to think of any other tour that would have me jumping up with excitement. That's been on my personal list for many years and I hope it materializes soon.
Matt: South Africa would be the other dream destination. I try to keep it reasonable in regards to places that heavy bands have played and done somewhat successful shows over the years. I don't think there's any prayer of even recouping plane ticket costs for five people coming from New York or Philadelphia to Cape Town. A lot of our touring has the main goal of connecting with people through music, but the next hope is getting some sightseeing and new experiences. We don't make a lot of money through this band, so we're trying to get some life points when we can on tour.