EMQ’s with SENTINEL COMPLEX
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Bournemouth, UK based Cyberpunk Metal act Sentinel Complex. Huge thanks to Jamie Everett and Josh Grayson for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?
Hello! We are Sentinel Complex, a two-piece cyberpunk metal act with music that ranges from fast heavy riffs and drumbeats to industrial electronic sound design and synths. We started making music together for a few indie game/ film projects in 2014, and after some time and realising we had a connection we started writing music for ourselves under our original name – Nova Prospect. In 2016 we rebranded under the name Sentinel Complex and have been honing our sound and style ever since.
How did you come up with your band name?
Well once we realised our old name would probably get us in some legal trouble with a certain game developer, we began a process of brainstorming everything involved in our music’s lore trying to find something suitable to sum it all up under two words. We ended up with Sentinel Complex, which makes more sense if you add a “The” to beginning of it. If you know the story of our music, you’ll know what it means!
What country are you from and what is the metal scene like there?
We are based in the coastal town of Bournemouth at the very bottom of the UK, and the music scene around here is… er… lacking at best! Don’t get me wrong we know a few great local acts around here but honestly other than a couple of venues there isn’t really a whole lot ever going on down here. A lot of bands and artists – especially the younger ones – tend to claim Southampton or other south coast locations as their hometown because generally speaking they have a higher concentration of creative people.
What is your latest release (Album, EP, Single, Video)
Our most recent release currently is the single Demise of the Faithful, and we had started writing this track towards the second half of 2019 when we had the idea to take our next record in a much darker direction. It’s a strong metal track with a sprinkling of film score on the top. We started out with this idea to write a track about blind faith and to hearken back to end time scriptures – you can’t get darker than riffing off of old apocalypse texts!
Demise of the Faithful (Lyric Video)
Who have been your greatest influences?
Jamie: Honestly, I think my biggest inspiration musically has to be Hans Zimmer. The guy oozes with inspiration and after seeing him live twice I can say never has music moved me like his! When it comes to metal, bands like Trivium and Periphery really do it for me so I think I have just picked up certain writing styles from bands like those. Electronically though I love the dark stuff, and it’s the mid-tempo artists like Swarm and Rezz that really make me go “man I wish I could make those sounds”.
Josh: Trent Reznor (NIN) and Clown from Slipknot are people I respect the visionary ability of, as well as the music. There’s plenty more but I’ll go on all day.
What first got you into music?
Jamie: I grew up in a family of musical people and have just always been around it, so I was sure to get into music at some point! It was when I watched a friend of mine play his guitar when I was about 8 that really got me wanting to do music myself though, and since then it has just been a big part of my life. When I started actually studying music though, I found myself deep in the rabbit hole of recording, mixing and learning to play other instruments.
Josh: My earliest memory of music in my life would have to be sitting in my nan’s living room in Oxford with my uncle. He had MTV2 on when Marilyn Manson’s video for Dope Show came on and I was transfixed by the sounds and imagery. I have always seen myself as an artistic type, always playing around with media. I looked up to people like Clown (from Slipknot) and Manson, and due to following artists like them for years, music became to me like painting time with sound.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
There are a few artists we would both love to collaborate with, but we have actually been able to collaborate with one of our favourite artists, Swarm, which is a bucket list occasion for us! Some other artists would be Fear Factory, 1788-L, Ice Nine Kills and Rezz. Mick Gordon would also be an absolute dream to work with too for us!
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Bloodstock in the UK! Josh’s favourite and the only one that we would actually really love to play at haha.
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
I can’t say we have ever received anything particularly strange from a fan, but I’m sure that day will come!
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Do what you want, make what you want, regardless of what other people think. If it makes you happy, do it.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
That’s a toss-up between Paul Gray and Chester Bennington, both of which were utterly devastating.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
Just the fact that we have been able to accomplish a dream of ours which is to release music worldwide is the best thing ever. Knowing that our attempts at music have actually had an impact on people is just next level too because it is still crazy to us!
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Probably the fact that labels have such a bad rep for screwing over musicians nowadays!
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Jamie: The two albums I cannot choose between are “Shogun” by Trivium and “Juggernaut” by Periphery. “Shogun” is in my opinion some of the best metal that has ever been written and “Juggernaut” is just a masterpiece. The story from start to finish too makes that album such a journey and to me, and almost unbeatable.
Josh: “Year Zero Remixed” by NIN. Found that album in my local library and the cover art interested me. Blew my mind when I heard it and in my opinion it’s stronger than the original record.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
I think we can comfortably say that vinyls are our personal favourite since we both have our own collections! There’s just something special about vinyl, even the modern ones. Cassettes are the definite runner up though.
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
Jamie: As a band we haven’t actually played live yet, but it is something we want to do once we have enough material we deem worthy and once we get the rigs together! I played a good amount of shows growing up as I was always going from band to band, but I think my most memorable performance was when I was asked by one of my old schools if me and my band at the time could come in and play for some of the kids there (some of the less heavy songs we had written haha). I was sceptical at how it was going to go, when I say every single little soul there was jumping about the place and loving it, I mean it! It was so heart-warming to see, and I really hope at least one of those kids was inspired to learn an instrument because of it.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
Jamie: Without music though I would have no idea what I would be doing. Before I started doing music more seriously, I wanted to be an engineer, so it’s probably something along those lines!
Josh: I’d probably be in a mental asylum for having no healthy way to express emotions in all honesty.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Tom Atkins, Vincent Price and Christopher Lee for all the horror movie stories, Sean Young because she would be a blast to have a drink with and Corey Taylor because he’s a huge horror nut, not to mention the frontman of one of our favourite bands. Throw in Tom Savini and Spencer from Ice Nine Kills too as honourable mentions!
What’s next for the band?
Well for the rest of the year we are planning to release our new album single by single, so there’ll be a steady flow of new material from us! We have a couple of releases coming out soon which we are really excited to show everyone.
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
We are on all big the social media platforms, and we also have a website at www.sentinelcomplex.co.uk, our socials are as follows:
Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?
If you think Jaffa Cakes are a biscuit, you are wrong in every respect!
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
If you made it this far, thank you for reading! Stay safe all.
If you made it this far, thank you for reading! Stay safe all.
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