Cove Reber of
After Saosin achieved a large following in Southern California, lead singer Anthony Green suddenly departed the band. They eventually found Cove Reber, a young and inexperienced kid from the same part of southern California as the band, and with a similar vocal range to that of Anthony. I joined Cove Reber aboard the bands tour bus during the Projekt Revolution Tour stop at Jones Beach in New York.
You were on the Taste of Chaos tour before this tour. How do the two compare?
This one is a thousand times better. It is a world of difference. The big thing about touring for us is food, and the catering on this tour is some of the best catering that I’ve ever had. It is a gourmet meal every night — it’s awesome.
As far as playing for the fans, how is that different?
The crowds here are 10 times bigger than Taste of Chaos. More kids are coming out, which is an amazing thing.
Where does the name Saosin come from?
It is a Chinese word and it means love with caution, or small heart.
You didn’t choose the name, but do you know how the band came up with it?
Band names are one of the hardest things to come up with nowadays because there are thousands of bands. The only way to come up with a name now is to open a dictionary and point to three words and there you go. Anthony came up with the name, and it’s genius because it wasn’t taken and it’s a small name. On a concert poster Saosin really stands out compared to Story of the Year or My Chemical Romance because it’s so few letters so they make it bigger, and it stands out more.
You shot the video for you latest single “You’re Not Alone” in Sweden. How was that?
It was awesome. There were three directors who came to us with an awesome concept. The shooting went really well — they knew exactly what we wanted and what they wanted and they were super fast and efficient. They took two takes of every shot, and then it was over — it was really easy.
Why did you choose Sweden?
It was for the directors — we could have done the video with a green screen in LA, but anytime you shoot in LA the record label is always there and they try to tweak everything. When it comes to our music they let us do our own thing, but when it comes to video they are always controlling. We shot it in Sweden so no one could be around, and it made everything smoother and more comfortable.
What is the meaning behind the song “You’re Not Alone”?
It was therapy at the time. At the time I wrote the song it was the way I was feeling, and the wave I was going through. I had the first verse for six months, and I wrote the chorus at 4 am in my closet. We had a big walk-in closet, and I was sitting in there trying to finish songs because we were way more prepared musically than vocally and lyrically, which is good in a way because it made everything more ambiguous. That night I wrote the chorus, and I thought of another lyric that I had written before when I was feeling the same way, so I started going through all of my papers and I found it.
That was the first verse?
Yeah, I pulled out the first verse, and sang it all in a line and recorded it. I had the core of the song — the verse structure and the chorus. When we entered pre-production in the studio we had nine songs that were done, and our producer wanted us to write three more, and those were the ones that made the record as opposed to most of the initial nine songs.
Are you writing songs at the moment?
Not really. If something inspires someone to write a riff, then it’s expected for them to write it down, but at the same time we aren’t trying to write because we want to put all of our focus on the tour and making us sound the best. There is a lot that goes on after writing a record, and we would rather focus on that and do the record some kind of justice. We felt that we wrote the best record that we could have possible written at the time.
Who do you look up to in the music world?
I look up to a lot of the bands that these guys got me into. They got me into Björk, and I finally caved into Incubus —
I saw them last week here.
I’m so jealous. I love them.
They are great. They get up on stage and just improvise — it is like they are rewriting the songs as they perform.
Yeah, so definitely Brandon from Incubus is an inspiration, and Christian from Blindside.
You mentioned Björk — do you ever listen to Sigur Rós?
I tend to listen to them when I’m in a writing mood, because their vocal performances are insane. When I’m not writing, Spencer from Underoath is one of my good buddies, and I love their new record so I’m always jamming that. There are so many bands nowadays that inspire me, which is weird because half the bands that inspired me before I got into this band are bands that I’m playing with now.
How long have you been singing?
I’ve been taking my vocal training seriously for five years. Before that I knew I could sing, but I didn’t do much with it. I would sing when my mom played the piano, or in a choir, or if someone wanted help writing a song, but that was it.
After the first singer left the band, what was the process of finding you?
Basically, he quit on a flight home — which was the worst time that he could have possibly quit to be honest. They had a new tour, and were exploding especially in southern California where we are from. They were on the tip of everyone’s tongue, and were selling out places left and right. Every place that they played in southern California was madness. He just got tired being from the east coast, and the rest of the band being from the west coast. It was hard on him having to fly back and forth.
What went in to finding you?
I was just a fan, still in high school and I didn’t realize that he had just quit. When I read it I thought he was just sick and couldn’t tour. Four months later my friend told me that Anthony had quit, and I went straight home and sent the guys an email, sent in the demo and the rest is history.
How crazy is it to go from a fan to the lead singer?
It was crazy, especially in my hometown where we played my first show. There were 1,400 kids there and I had just barely held a mic before. I didn’t even know what to do with the mic, and the guys said ‘go out there, be crazy and just sing’. I got mixed reviews — it was everything from ‘give the guy time; he has never been a lead singer before’ to ‘this kid sucks’. They expected me to be Anthony Green right off the bat, and nobody can do what he does. There are so many bands that try to do what Anthony does by singing high and doing his moves on stage — you can learn from that but you can’t copy him exactly. We have similar vocal ranges, so at first people were saying I was trying to copy him. The thing was I had to record one of his songs, so I had to do it justice and I feel that I did. It’s weird because people tend to compare Anthony and me, more than other bands that try so hard to copy him, and I’m not even trying to copy him. I can name 10 bands right now that try to do exactly what Anthony does.
Who are a couple of them?
I can’t — I would get into so much trouble.
Do you have any rituals before you go on stage?
No — we are weird like that. We put on our clothes, go by the stage and just wait for the go sign, and then we go out.
What does the future look like for Saosin?
We are doing a tour with Norma Jean right after this, which is going to be sick.
Are you coming back to New York?
Yeah, we are playing three New York shows — a show in Long Island, then Irving Plaza in New York City and then right across the river in New Jersey. We know that in this area, for whatever reason, kids like us, so we like coming back. It’s a big US tour, and it’s going to be awesome.
Do you have another single coming out from the last record?
We are at a weird period with our label right now. We are promoting “You’re Not Alone” right now, and Fuse is playing the crap out of it on their station which we can’t be happier about. At the same time our label wants to time everything, which is weird because they pushed the video, but don’t want to push the song on the radio just yet. Every time you hear it on the radio it’s our own fans calling in and requesting it, which is great because it is organic. We hope there is a next single, and we are pretty sure there will be one, but who knows when the next song will be released.
Do you choose the next single?
Yes, it is all up to us. The label does their research, and tells us what songs they think will hit, but in the end it is a group decision — we give the thumbs up or the thumbs down.