Band Interview: Encoder

Hailing from Allentown, Pennsylvania, Encoder are a band that have been putting in copious amounts of work since the start of their musical journey in 2014. As they’ve grown since their beginning not only in style and sound, but as people, the changes that they’ve undergone have reflected back into their music and it culminated with their latest release this past December in Vega. Now that the calendar has turned to another year, there’s much more in store for the group and we got the chance to talk with the band about themselves and their growth, Vega itself and what the future has in store.

For more on Encoder and to stay up to date on the latest news, you can follow them on their socials: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Website | YouTube

Over the past few years that you guys have been together as Encoder, explain what changes you have made within the band and your music, and why you felt these changes were necessary.

Over the years, with each release and major milestone we continued to push ourselves further in terms of writing, performance, and branding. With our most recent EP, we’ve cut out a sound for ourselves, incorporating a variety of different genres and styles from our diverse musical backgrounds. With our first release, ‘The Order in Chaos’, we ended up releasing a pretty standard metalcore EP, following this we attempted to break out of our comfort zone and attempted to write a heavier, catchier, and more diverse six song EP, each showcasing different themes and lyrical content.

Vega has a very raw and personal feel to it. Explain what this EP means to the four of you and the inspiration behind it.

The inspiration both behind the writing and the meaning of Vega is accepting change. We found that when writing our second EP, much has changed in the time between releases, attitudes have shifted, tastes have evolved, and we had a completely new outlook. Vega is the name of a north polar star, with the current one being Polaris. In 14,000 years, the Earth’s rotation will shift, resulting in the north polar star becoming Vega. Humans have used the north star to navigate and guide their lives for thousands of years, but with time comes change, and the ideals and attitudes we once held will slowly change and we find ourselves following a path we once never expected.

What procedures did you take when you began to write this EP? Were there any rough patches or difficulties during the writing process?

One of the difficulties in writing this EP were member changes, with members falling in and out of interest as well as some personal disagreements, Vega ended up being written and recorded by three members, Nick Neubauer, Corey Mohr, and Dallas Crawford. We worked closely with our producers, Shaun and Dylan Werle to compensate for the member problems we were having to make sure we didn’t miss a step along the recording process.

What is the main message that you try to express to your fans? Do you feel that your message stays true over time or that it adapts as the band grows and moves forward?

When writing the lyrics to the latest EP, one thing we tried to convey is a positive message even through adversity. Some of the topics covered in Vega, drug addiction, religious differences, accepting loss, and depression are all very heavy topics. But when writing we don’t attempt to convey a bleak tone. Life puts us through these difficult situations, but our strongest tool against this is our own willpower and the positivity that allows us to shine through the darkest of times.

One thing that I admire is how you guys are constantly expressing your love and gratitude towards your fans and supporters. What kind of impact would you say your supporters have made on you and what are a few ways you try to give back?

As often as you hear a response like this, our fans are really the one thing that makes it all worthwhile. Every show we play, we find new fans singing along, picking up merchandise and getting to know us. We strive to get to know our fans the best we can and interact with them at any given opportunity. This music isn’t just for us, it is for everybody and if we could make any sort of impact on somebody by listening to our music than all this hard work has been worth it.

Vega, by Encoder

Vega by Encoder, released 23 December 2016 1. Thrall 2. Mantra 3. Weirwood 4. Vega 5. Aion 6. Hemlock

What are some of your most memorable moments as a band?

Nick (Vocals): Back in late 2014, we played a Halloween show with I See Stars and The Plot In You, and I ended up dressing in a Spiderman morph suit and performed in it. It ended up being extremely uncomfortable over the course of the night, but it was definitely a fun experience. I even met some other people dressed up as Spiderman that night.

Corey (Guitar): I’d say a favorite moment is almost like a reoccurring moment. It’s when people pull us aside after a set and tell us that we’ve come so far as a band, how much we’ve evolved and how much we’re progressing and how we’re taking steps in the right direction. Moments like that are really encouraging to me and inspire me to push myself more and more as we continue.

Dallas Crawford (Bass / Vocals): While the show with I See Stars and The Plot In You was a great time (I dressed up in extremely short shorts and aviators, which is a sick combo), our studio time for Vega will always hold a place in my heart. Spending a week with the band and the Werle brothers was a truly great and unforgettable experience that I will never forget.

Foli Creppy (Drums): One memorable moment with the guys is definitely my first show as a member of Encoder. We went out there, crushed it, and received tons of positive feedback. It was like a cool little “welcome to the band”. 

Please enlighten us how you guys became a band and how you’ve evolved individually.

Encoder is the product of another local band that was disbanded in early 2014 called ‘From Dead to Worse’. Three of the four current members were left together in band, but none of us were original members. Instead of continuing something that somebody else had built up, we decided to start fresh and carve out a name for ourselves with a new direction and band altogether.

How would you describe your music/shows to those just discovering you? 

Our most recent release, Vega, I would consider being both accessible and intricate. During our shows, we strive to maintain a high energy throughout our set, relentless in our motion, putting everything we’ve got during our time on stage. With a blend of music that is both catchy enough to sing along, and heavy enough to throw down to, our show experience can really be a roller coaster as we transition between the two extremes of our genre.

It seems you guys have performed a lot throughout PA. Are there any future plans for touring or any shows outside of PA?

We are currently working with local promoters, venues, and booking agencies to start touring the eastern US. Expect some weekend dates in the near future. All our shows are currently found on our website at as well!

Can you share with us something Encoder fans might not know about the band?

The band name Encoder, was first brought up and accepted by the founding members without any real explanation or reason behind it. Later some interpretations of the name Encoder have been that music represents the encoding process, encrypting data into something abstract and hard to read, but deep down still full of meaning. This isn’t something we often disclose or openly talk about except for some quick conversations when the band was first beginning to form.

What can we expect from Encoder in 2017?

Studio time for a single has already been booked and we are writing our third EP, this time a concept EP which we are very excited to announce and complete. Also expect some small tours this summer while we finish up at the studio.

What Are Your Thoughts!

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