Hard In The Paint with Breathe Carolina

Interview By: Andrew Lazar
Word By: Will Rose
Photos By: Will Rose

Two words can be employed to adequately sum up witnessing Breathe Carolina during a live performance: raw energy. Formed in 2006, the not so electro-pop trio, consisting of  David Schmitt, Tommy Cooperman, and Eric Armenta bring a unique energy to the stage that must be witnessed in order to fully appreciate. Blending a mix of electronic rock, electro-pop and post hardcore, Breathe Carolina has formulated a sound all their own.

Schmitt’s dynamic vocals and stage antics play well with Cooperman’s cool, calculated presence, while Armenta provides beat and aesthetic with the addition of a standard drum kit. All work together surprisingly well, forming a seemingly symbiotic relationship between the three. Their ability to entertain and captivate a crowd is supported by the trios penchant for engaging said audience throughout the entirety of the performance.

During their latest appearance, headlining the famed Glowrage tour stop in Orlando, the turn up was very real. Schmitt worked the crowd with tenacity, showing no restraint as he whipped the crowd of neon-bleeding partygoers into a frenzy, dousing attendees – and himself – with gallon upon gallon of black light reactant paint. The duos ability to cultivate and maintain such a high level of energy during their performances has not been slept on or overlooked; with over a million followers on Facebook alone, it is no secret that Breathe Carolina is in business, and business is booming.


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The group has released four albums since the band’s formation, with “Savages” being the most recent. Released in April 2014 on Fearless Records, “Savages” quickly found a home on Billboard’s Top 200, peaking at number 22, number 4 on the Alternative Albums chart, and took the top spot on the Dance/Electronic Albums chart as well. “Savages” was somewhat of a departure from the group’s previous three albums, focusing on a more electronic and dance-oriented vibe in lieu of the band’s electronic rock and post hardcore influence as heard on the preceding albums.

The new sound boded well, as “Savages” was well received by fans and critics alike while they performed at Escape Psycho Circus 2015 in San Bernardino, CA on October 30. They have two additional performances coming up in November where they will share the stage with The Chainsmokers, Herobust, and Protohype. Needless to say, the boys of Breathe Carolina show no signs of slowing their roll any time soon. Keep a sharp eye out for future performances in your area; it’s surely an event you don’t want to miss.

Towards the end of their show we were able to sit down with Breathe Carolina for this interview. Check it out below.

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Can you tell our readers what it’s like being a touring headliner?

Its Stressful. Your in charge of everything. The bus, lighting at the shows, and set times are all your call. There is a lot of responsibility. If something goes wrong it falls on you. The positive side to it is that you walk on stage and you know all those fans are there for you. All that stress that accumulates throughout the day just goes away and it is all worth it at the end of the day.

What has been your biggest influence in your sound and style musically speaking?

A lot of things really. We were listing to 150 BPM techno back in the day. But its a little bit of everything we like bands and pop style music as well. We take from everything and I think that’s why it sounds like we grew up in bands. We love making these cool progressive type songs. Growing up being in bands a lot of the melodies and chord progressions is just so similar.

How do you incorporate your creative philosophy and vision into your shows and music?

I think we have always had such high energy shows. We get on stage and just get weird its a feeling that translates into our performance. We want to go on stage and feel like we are rock stars playing dance music. If you are not hurt by the end of the show you are doing it wrong. We go out there and treat every show like its our last.

What’s your go to thing to prepare for a studio session?

We go to Diablo which is this taco place by my house and then we sit at the house and produce. We have come to realize that every studio session is so different so it is really hard to actually prepare. I look at it like I am going to a dentist appointment. I might walk out with beautiful teeth or a bloody mouth. I don’t know. You never know. It’s always different each time. It doesn’t phase you until you get into the room and get down to business. We work separately and then come together. We work really well apart and at the end we bring it together and finish it. You don’t want somebody hovering over your head.

How do you maintain the classic elements of your style with the ever changing demand of electronic music?

We honestly just do what we want to do. We don’t pay attention to whats going on and try to change with it. When we are writing and thinking about our style we just write what we feel at the end of the day. It’s always very progressive and happy because that’s what we feel.

You have worked with some pretty big names in music. Who are some of your favorites?

We just finished a song with Marshmello and Bassjackers. We have a lot of solo productions coming out as well. they are legitimately the sickest producers in the studio. It is just mind blowing how fast they were. Things we would take an hour to do it took them five minutes.

What advice would you give an up and coming DJ/Producer?

The number one thing is to be persistent. Branding is also a huge deal. You can only get so far in playing your music but if you don’t know how to deliver that visually people wont be able to grasp it. We are meeting 14 year old kids that are shitting on all of us as far as producing goes but if they don’t have branding then they won’t get anywhere.

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