When Three Days Grace released their self-titled debut album back in 2003, band members never imagined that one day they would surpass a legendary rock act on the Billboard charts.
That’s exactly what happened with the band’s latest single, “Infra-Red,” which recently hit No. 1 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Songs chart, giving them them fourteen No. 1 hits in the history of that chart and, in turn, surpassing Van Halen for most ever.
“Growing up, Van Halen was my first cassette tape that I got around ‘85,” Three Days Grace bassist Brad Walst told Heavy Consequence. “We’re all huge fans, so it’s pretty unbelievable.”
Walst spoke more with Heavy Consequence about the chart record, the meaning behind “Infra-Red,” their latest album, Outsider, what the guys did in lieu of their canceled summer tour with Avenged Sevenfold, and why he thinks Three Days Grace’s music connects with rock fans.
Check out Three Days Grace’s record-breaking song “Infra-Red” and read our Q&A with Brad Walst below:
On surpassing Van Halen for the most No. 1 hits in the history of the Billboard Mainstream Rock Songs chart
It was one of those things that when “Mountain” went to No. 1 and we heard that we were tied with Van Halen, we didn’t think about it much. We just went with the flow. So, when we got word that we passed them by going to No. 1 again, it was unbelievable. It’s surreal, and we’re humbled by it all.
On why Three Days Grace’s music has struck such a chord with rock fans
For us, music is therapy. When we’re writing, we really take a lot of time and talk about what’s going on in our lives, and that comes out in our music. We put our feelings and emotions down on paper, and it comes out in the songs. Luckily, we have great fans that can relate to that. We’ve heard a lot of great stories how our music has given hope to our fans, and for us, that’s the ultimate payoff as an artist.
On the band’s latest single, “Infra-Red,” which went No. 1 to break the Van Halen record
It’s a funny story, because while we were writing that song, it was one of those songs that was cool but a little outside of what you would expect from Three Days Grace. It was at the back of the list until we went to the studio and laid it down, and then we started to think, “We’ve got something here.” We do a lot of our demos in the garage, and when you get the music into the studio, it takes on a new life.
The song is about walking into a room where you feel that energy from someone, and you know you have a connection. A lot of times these days, our connections come from computer screens, so it’s that feeling of the crazy energy you get when you meet someone in person and really click with them.
On what the band did in lieu of their summer tour with Avenged Sevenfold, which was canceled due to M. Shadows’ vocal issues
We were already on the road for a few shows leading up to that tour, and we had a few shows in Canada after that, and then we just came home. It was a beautiful month to be home — hot, sunny and relaxing. We took the time, because in the fall, we have European and Canadian tours and will go on and on, so we took advantage of the break. I haven’t heard anything yet [on making up those dates with Avenged Sevenfold and Prophets of Rage]. I’d love to, and I think it would be a great tour. Maybe in the future.
On Three Days Grace’s latest album, Outsider, and if the guys were surprised by the album’s success
Going into a record, you never really know what’s going to happen, and we try not to think about that. I think our big key to success is that we don’t let anybody come in and influence us. We just put blinders on and move forward and do what we love. So, we didn’t know what to expect, and the response the album got was great.
On what it’s been like having his brother, Matt, as the lead vocalist of Three Days Grace for nearly six years now
It’s been amazing. Matt is really coming into his own in this record, and you can hear it. He has that confidence. I think with Outsider, it all came together. He has so many great ideas as a writer, vocalist and fontman. To go to the places we’ve gone and do the things we’ve done in the last six years with new singer is pretty remarkable, and I think and that will hit us when we stop touring for good one day.