EMQ’s with Shi – 死
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview, with Louisville, Kentucky based Depressive Suicidal Stoner Doom band, Shi – 死. Huge thanks to guitarist/vocalist, Bael, 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?
Howdy! I’m Bael and I play guitar and do vocals for Shi. We are a Depressive Suicidal Stoner Doom band from Louisville, KY. We’ve been playing together for I think just over 5 years now, with our current sound really coalescing about 2-3 years ago.
How did you come up with your band name?
I took 3 years of Japanese in High School, and was trying to figure a way to incorporate the language into musical projects before the band formed. Shi translates to “death”, and it felt fitting for a metal/doom band. I’d be lying if I said the name hasn’t provided some challenges, but we’ve all grown to dig it.
What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
Louisville, KY is a little bit of an odd spot. It’s too north to be southern, but a bit too southern to be northern. We’ve got a little bit of that midwestern air about us as well…it’s a weird city for sure. However, we’ve got a great music scene with tons of talented bands (Blind Scryer, Prayer Line, Volcandra, Bad Wires, the list goes on and on)
What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)
We have a new album coming out on October 15th, “Basement Wizard”, and we just put out the first single, ‘Rehash’, on Spotify for streaming right now!
Who have been your greatest influences?
So, each of us pull a bit of varied influence as players and have pretty wide tastes, but for this particular band it’s other rad doom bands. Weedeater, Church of Misery, Bongzilla, and of course Black Sabbath are all big ones for us. We all also really like classic rock stuff, so some of that comes out in our songwriting when we get together.
What first got you into music?
For me, as far as actually playing music, it was just what another friend wanted to do. We were in middle school and he was going to pick up the drums. I wanted to basically do anything he did, and he already knew a guitarist, so I said I’d learn bass so I could be in a band with them. Eventually started playing guitar myself as well.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
Really any of the aforementioned influences would be incredible! We also would love to branch out and get a little more out there, so being able to work with instrumentalists or performers from other genres would be neat. We just like to play, have fun, and see what comes of it.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Psycho Las Vegas and Muddy Roots both jump to mind as far as larger fests, but any of the Doomed and Stoned fests around would be super cool. Getting to play over in Japan or Europe would be awesome as well!
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
I don’t know if we’ve ever received a gift from a fan….especially not one that would be considered weird!
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Keep on keeping on.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
Freddie Mercury, for sure.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
It’s kinda liberating putting yourself out there creatively, but at the same time it’s terrifying. Not knowing how folks might react to your work is really the double edged sword of it all, isn’t it!
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
I really don’t know…my gut reaction would be to go back closer to where there were talent scouts and labels were proactively out looking for talent to sign and support, but that also leads to a lot of predatory practices. It seems like moving away from that has given artists and creatives more autonomy, and the advent of technology and digital distribution allows smaller independents to put their material out there more easily and widely than ever before.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon”. I’ve listened to it countless times, and it never really gets old. A true masterpiece! Although, my Last.FM account says that the Jesus Christ Superstar ’96 London Studio Cast is my most listened to album since I’ve been scrobbling through there.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
Each serves their own purpose. I wouldn’t say any single one is best! I mostly listen to streams/digital these days but that’s just for ease of access at work.
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
That’s probably a toss-up between our first album release show in January of 2020, and the Louisville is Dead fest from 2019. Both were wild times with lots of friends.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
Probably all the things I currently do outside of music; Twitch streaming, watching movies, being a boring old person!
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
I’m way too introverted to want to host a dinner party…I’d just leave that up to the others!
What’s next for the band?
Putting out this album on October 15th, and then playing the album release show the next night on October 16th at our home base Mag Bar here in town!
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
You can basically find us everywhere by searching ShiLouisville!
Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?
I’ve never had them, but now I know what I’m gonna search for next time I’m at an international market!
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
We super appreciate you allowing us to fill this out, and hope you enjoy the new tunes! Be well, y’all.
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