Rockers SILVERSYDE released their Rockfest Records debut full length album In The Dark last Friday. I recently had the chance to connect with lead singer Laura Rentz and ask her all about her dramatic testimony, In The Dark and what they’ve learned since they became a band a decade ago.
Laura’s answers are some of the most authentic and in depth answers we’ve seen for years so please take the time to check them out and really get a deep sense of the heart behind In The Dark.
[JW] For those who may not know who Laura is, what’s your testimony and how did you become a Christian?
[LR] My full testimony is lengthy, but the short version is that I was brought up as a Christian but didn’t walk out my faith. I let pride, past hurts and resentment overtake my heart and mind and I started in a downward spiral of spiritual and physical destruction. I started using drugs and alcohol to cope with severe depression and self-loathing and started cutting my arms as an alternative way to release the pain I was experiencing.
My relationship with Jesus wasn’t made real in my life until I was about to take my life and cried out to God in anger and frustration. Through the mess I was in during my last suicide attempt, I sat and watched the blood leave my wrist as I waited for death, and then I felt God’s presence surround me. It was at that moment He opened my eyes to the value and worth that was stripped from me as a child. It was a pretty violent awakening for me as He let me see that I was no longer ugly, no longer worthless, and no longer better off dead; but that I was valued, I was beautiful, and I was worth dying for. It was a pivotal time in my life where I became determined to never be in that spot again. God delivered me from the drugs, depression, suicidal tendencies, alcohol reliance and self harm. My life was forever changed that day and my relationship with Jesus started to grow.
[JW] SILVERSYDE has been a band for 10 years now, what’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned across that decade, both personally and as a band?
[LR] Even though we’ve been a band since 2009, we’ve really picked up steam in the last couple of years and cultivated our sound, brand and everything else it takes to become a strong, relevant band in this new music scene. We’ve worked hard to develop what we collectively feel is our best music to date. This album is a blend of who we are as individuals working together in this band to create a unified sound that showcases an overall maturity lyrically and musically. This new album is symbolic of rebirth and we hope our listeners will feel the same.
[JW] The new record is called In The Dark, what inspired that title? And is it tied into the 2nd track The Façade?
[LR] The title of the album came to us as a spin-off of our last EP ‘Casting Shadows’. We as believers need to let the light of Jesus shine through us “casting shadows” into a dark and lost world. “In The Dark” represents being in the darkness and coming out into the light.
The entire album as a whole is a musical journey of a life transformed through Jesus. Each song on the album is representative of a step in the direction of life change and they are all woven together in a beautiful piece of art that we are incredibly proud of.
[JW] The new album is being released through Joseph Rojas’ Rockfest Records. When did Joseph approach you about joining them, what made you say yes and what’s working with them like?
[LR] We’ve been demoing this album for the last year and a half and we had shown Joseph some of the music we were working on at that time. A couple months later he began talking to us about joining the Rockfest family and we immediately felt honored that he had thought of us. He told us that our music and message line up with the Rockfest vision and heart to reach the lost with the message of salvation through Jesus. It’s been a great experience and support network so far, and the camaraderie we feel as a whole is awesome. We also believe that each artist that Joseph has selected to be on the label has been deliberate and intentional and we are excited to be a part of such a great family of believers and artists.
[JW] The first single from this album is going to be Scars and you’ve just wrapped up filming the music video with ATD Media, what’s the meaning behind Scars and what can people expect from the video?
[LR] Our song “Scars” is a conversation between two people; one seeming to have it all together on the outside but hiding unrepentant sins beneath the surface, and the other openly living in their sin. The conversation is a response from one to the other, but with a twist… You don’t know what you’re going to get when you take off someone’s mask, and what’s behind it may surprise you! The video is playful and serious at the same time, and Joel with ATD Media did an amazing job capturing the vision we gave him and we had the flexibility to let his creative mind roam as well. Overall the video will hopefully satisfy those who’ve been asking for a new video from us, as well as grab your attention of new listeners and hold it to the very end.
[JW] Undone was the first song to leap out to me as a standout on my first listen through. Take us behind the meaning of that super powerful song.
[LR] “Undone” is a song of self realization and regret. Personally, I’d done things in my past that were so deeply steeped in blatant sin, and when I would wake up the next morning I wished I could just wash the memories away (hence the line) “I wash the last night off my fingers, and say that everything ok. But inside I can’t hide, the memories won’t fade away. I’ve tried to run, it’s all undone, I’m falling apart.” The memories of what I’d done were enough to keep me a slave to drugs and alcohol to numb the pain, later depression sunk in and that’s when I entered into self harm.
Regret can be toxic if left unattended and this song is a story parallel to my own life when I finally woke up and admitted that I couldn’t make it out of my repetitive cycle of sin alone. “I have run and tried to find all the truth buried in lies, it’s made me fall and lose my sight and left me lying here tonight.” But, just like my personal story of redemption, this song takes a hopeful turn “You took me in, I’m not alone, you’ve shown my love I would’ve never known!” God’s love is always waiting for us, pursuing us, and ready to wash away our sins when we come to Him and repent. “The arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear!” Isaiah 59:1. This bible verse is the anthem of my life and a steady reminder that I never want to be back where I came from, and God’s love is unending and able to cleanse us.
[JW] When you’re writing about desperation and the emptiness we all feel inside at such times it’s bound to stir up personal memories and make the writing process harder. How do you push through those moments? And were there any bible verses which helped?
[LR] One of the songs that ministers to me the most is “Sleepwalking”. I wrote it after meeting a young girl at a festival when we were signing autographs. She asked if I could talk for a minute and we found a little corner that was removed from the crowd. She went on to tell me how she was brought up in church, and knew all the right words to say to help her friends and get them to youth group to hear about Jesus. She went further to say how empty she felt, like she was just going through the motions of Christianity, but inside she was dead. Something she said to me has always stood out, “At home I have a stack of a hundred suicide letters I’ve written, but I can’t quite finish yet.” My heart broke with her that day; we cried, we prayed, and she left with her head held high! I told her when she returned home I wanted her to send me a picture of the pile of suicide letters- on fire!
A few days later she sent it to me and we talked again! The freedom she experienced was tangible, she was living it and she was ready to move forward in life- hopeful!
I write about my story all the time and I am refreshed looking back and seeing where I’ve been and where God has brought me now. When I think about depression now I reflect on this young girl and so many others across the world who need hope, and that makes me want to fight even harder for each and every one of them! A verse I’ve continually clung to is John 1:5- “The light shines in the dark, and the darkness can never extinguish it.” It’s a reminder to me that Jesus has paid the price for our lives with His death on Calvary and He has conquered sin and death with His resurrection three days later and is victorious over the grave! So even though the darkness tries to make us think there’s no hope, we know differently!
[JW] Which track on the album resonates with you the most? And have any of them gone on to minister to you after you wrote them?
[LR] Each track on this album resonates with me in a different way, mostly because they’ve been birthed from personal experience. The album as a whole still gives me chills hearing it even though we’ve been working on it for the last year and a half, but the one track that stands out to me the most is our song ‘March Of The Saints’. The anthemic chorus sings “time and time again You’ve never abandoned me, it’s love I see in Your eyes”, this brings me back to every step of faith we’ve taken in our lives, every triumph and low point, never once have we been abandoned or felt forsaken. The Holy Spirit has brought us peace in the midst of chaos and that has always been a firm reminder that God has us and His love is unending.
[JW] Which song(s) off In The Dark are you most enjoying playing live? And what can people expect from a SILVERSYDE live show?
[LR] The songs from the new album we’ve chosen to play live have been pretty deliberate of how we wanted to showcase the ups and downs of the album as a musical journey. Currently we’ve been playing “Scars” which is soon to be released as our first single and new music video, “The Facade”, “In The Dark”, “Wait For You”, and “March Of The Saints”. Just as our album is a musical journey from start to finish, our live shows are high-energy, passionate renditions of our songs that hopefully resonate with our audiences leaving them hopeful, inspired and wanting more.
[JW] Lastly, how can the JesusWired readers be praying for you over the coming months? Both as a band and personally…
[LR] We always covet prayers over our families, tours, tour vehicles, music we produce and for the lives of our listeners; that Jesus would touch their hearts and minds and they would have a supernatural experience with His Spirit that would change their lives forever.