March Of The Gods: Botswana Metalheads

March Of The Gods - Botswana Metalheads Cover

March Of The Gods: Botswana Metalheads
Directed: Raffaele Mosca
2014
Review by Chris Galea
6/10

Having grown up on a tiny and relatively isolated island but whose Metal scene endures, I can’t say that I find the propensity of this music genre to propagate far and wide to be a surprising quality. And yet I found “March of the Gods” to be deeply intriguing.

This documentary chronicles the history of Wrust, a Death/Groove Metal band from Botswana, but in doing so it also gives us an insight into the Metal scene of this country…the bands and sub-genres that tend to be popular there and the attitudes of Metal fans. For yes, there is a Metal scene in this African country. But it’s quite a particular one.

Wrust was formed in 2000 in Gaborone, the capital city of Botswana…close to the border with South Africa. Influences cited by the band members range from the old school British scene to Death Metal bands such as Varathron, Cannibal Corpse and Rotting Christ. Into all these influences, Wrust seem to infuse the musical roots of their own country.

The ambitions, accomplishments and longevity of Wrust seem to have made them a point of reference of Botswana’s Metal scene. But to achieve that level of regard, Wrust have had to overcome numerous difficulties along the way – difficulties such as apathy and prohibitive financial costs. We discover that the band has often had to travel hundreds of kilometres to play for a handful of fans and for zero remuneration….but they still put 100% effort into those performances. I’m sure that many European and North American bands can relate to that level of dedication.

March Of The Gods Pic1

Similar feelings of déjà vu are likely to be sensed when we learn about the prejudices that Botswanan Metal fans are forced to refute: you know what I’m talking about…Satanism, metal fans as ‘troublemaker’ stereotypes and so on.

The documentary goes on to illustrate how invaluable the direct assistance of established bands is. For example, although many European and North American bands tend to neglect the area in their touring schedule, when Swedish band Entombed played there and offered genuine encouragement, fans and local bands seemed revitalised and their ambitions galvanized.

“March of the Gods” examines how the Metal scene of Botswana has developed in terms of crowd behaviour. Female Botswanan Metalheads share their own experiences too. The documentary also highlights the changes that the internet has brought about with regards to promoting gigs and promoting the bands themselves. In this respect, Wrust seem to have been on the forefront in embracing technology and social media to catalyse the band’s growth. Through my experience, such an entrepreneurial spirit tends to be what differentiates successful bands from the rest.

I get the impression that the link with South Africa is an important one, not only for Botswana but also for other African countries. The Metal scene of South Africa seems to be more vibrant but other surrounding countries seem eager to partake in that. Wrust even recorded their debut album “Soulless Machine” there before releasing it in 2007.

The documentary also goes into the image and attire of Metal fans in Botswana…something that European fans might find odd. Besides band shirts and denim and leather, Botswanan fans seem to have assimilated a ‘cowboy’ sort of image into all that.

March Of The Gods Pic2

I have to say that some scenes just don’t add anything of value to the documentary. For example, I got the feeling that some interviews could have been more eloquent and some political speeches came across as cringeworthy and have nothing at all to do with Metal. In fact, “March of the Gods” does suffer from some poor editing. Despite all this, though, it’s basically the only source of knowledge about the Metal scene of Botswana and therefore its charm remains immutable.

At the beginning of the interview, a music journalist speaks about his discovering Wrust and confesses that he realised Metal “transcends race and geography”…”it’s like a universal language”. And that’s probably the strongest message that can be derived from “March of the Gods”.

Postscript: What has happened since the documentary’s release?

Wrust haven’t released anything new since sophomore album “Intellectual Metamorphosis” in 2013. The band is still together though.

Amok, another band mentioned in “March of the Gods”, seem to have gone quiet in recent years.

Other bands from Botswana have made tentative steps into the international spotlight. For example, in 2016 Overthrust – a Death Metal band from Ghanzi (a town to the West of Botswana) – toured Europe and played Wacken Open Air festival.

Official Trailer

IMDB Entry

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt3405392/

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with THRONE OF ICARUS

Throne Of Icarus Logo

EMQ’s with THRONE OF ICARUS

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview, with London, England based Groove Metal band, Throne Of Icarus. Huge thanks to them 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?

Rob: Writer/Lyricist.

Gregg: Guitarist

Rob: Icarus Originally started as a studio project but we quickly realised the tracks needed to be delivered in a live scenario to truly reflect the level of distain we feel towards modern society and all it represents.

How did you come up with your band name?

Gregg: It’s really a metaphor for mankind. It was something that we were chewing over for some time and we really wanted to find something that sat firmly with what we write about.

Rob: As Gregg says, it’s a metaphor. It depicts mankind’s arrogance as we position ourselves on the throne of history, actingwithout care or consideration for the planet we inhabit, and much like the legendary story of Icarus,we too will go a step to far and eventually suffer the consequences of our actions.

Gregg: I mean shit, we are seeing it now with the environmental crisis of flooding and forest fires in the news on a daily basis!

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Gregg: We’re spread out between Essex and West London. The London metal scene seems alive and well and there are some really good bands coming out of the capital. To be fair, the UK as a whole has been seeing a real growth in home-grown talent which is awesome to see. We’re off on tour at the end of the year with Red Method, The Five Hundred and This is Turin who are three fine examples of the talent that’s out there!

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

Rob: Our latest release is our second single ‘Teacher’. It’s a dark story about the soul of a historic serial killer who lives within present day individuals. We do most of our own recording at Gregg’s studio but have the honour of working with Dave Chang who does all our mix and mastering. Head over to Spotify and have a listen!

Gregg: Rob’s actually the star of that video! Look out for the angry looking guy with the tattoos!

‘Teacher’ (Official Video)

‘Inhabitants’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Rob: There’s a big mix within the band from Hardcore, punk through to Death Metal, although there are obviously the classics like Slayer, The Haunted, Carcass etc.

Gregg: I’m heavily influenced by classical music while writing. I know it sounds strange but it’s all about the emotion it can generate, in turn that mood pours out onto the fretboard. From a production side of things, I’m always drawn to producers like Dr Dre for their approach and work ethic.

What first got you into music?

Rob: Metal music was my place to go during my teenage years to ‘let off steam’ and relate to a lot of the lyrics in tracks, it was the same sort of time I started to realise that ‘normal’ was bullshit, and I struggled to relate to the vacuous world of social popularity contests.

Gregg: Amen brother. I think Rob speaks for most of us there?

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Gregg: We’ve all been really impressed with a lot of bands coming out of Eastern Europe and Russia. Slaughter to Prevail would be awesome to work with, they really are getting shit right at the moment!

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Rob: I would love to see the guys play Hell Fest, although I’m keen to stress that Throne of Icarus are available to play any festivals so please feel free to get in touch if you like our tracks…shameless plug?

Gregg: Although we don’t have time to give you a full list…so if I had to choose I’d have to say Wacken in Germany. Always been a personal favourite of mine.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Gregg: Not Icarus related, but I was recognised in being in a previous band years ago and got a kebab bought for me on a night out in Southend…not very rock n’ roll. Rob actually had a stalker for a while though didn’t you mate?

Rob: No comment.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Rob: Make no apology for who you are and what you stand for.

Gregg: We know this past year and a half has been shit for shows and stuff, but now things are opening up get back out there and get to local shows. Support your favourite bands and venues and never be intimidated! You’ll be shocked how cool people are in the metal scene. Come and join the family.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Rob: Dimebag Darrell

Gregg: Lane Staley

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

Gregg: I enjoy most of it to be honest. Being creative, hanging out with some of my closest mates, travelling and meeting new people. Hate? Unnecessary politics. I have zero time for it. Also, not a fan of some venues treating artists like shit, maybe this whole pandemic will help that relationship.

Rob: I enjoy the creative process the most. I like unlocking the parts of me that have to be controlled in order to function in society. Yea, same as Gregg, bullshit politics or bitchy jealousy.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Rob: To make it more about talent and work ethic than who you know. Too many great bands are getting pushed to the side or never being noticed because they don’t have the right contacts.

Gregg: I’d like to go back to 1995…CD’s, packed shows and that feeling of discovering a new band from a review in your favourite magazine or track on a cover disc!

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Rob: Machine Head – “Burn My Eyes”

Gregg: Guns n’ Roses – “Appetite For Destruction”

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Rob: I’m guessing downloads, although not being that ‘tech savvy’ I miss the simple days of cassettes and CD’s.

Gregg: CD’s for me. I like having a physical copy of something in my hands as well as getting the chance to open the inlay booklet and really getting a feel for the bands message. CD artwork creation was an awesome process from an artists perspective.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Gregg: Although Throne of Icarus has been around for a few years now, the pandemic hit just as we were about to hit the road, so can’t name one yet! We’re back out as of October and it can’t come soon enough!

Rob: Yea, collectively we have all played some awesome shows in previous bands but this will be next level!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Gregg: Well, we are metal musicians in a pop world which means we all have 2nd jobs! If we’re not pulling metal gurns on a stage you can find us in all sorts of trades…Highway engineering, caring, metal fabricating, corporate health & safety…I’ll let you try and match the trade to the member!

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Rob: Andrei Chikatilo, David Attenborough, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Alan Watts and Christopher Hitchens.

Gregg: I kinda want to go to Rob’s party now just to see how Andrei and David get on!

What’s next for the band?

Rob: Shows, shows and more shows, it’s time to demonstrate the power of Icarus, we’re keen to demolish venues and sell our brand of terror to anyone who wants to hear it. In addition to that, there will be more releases coming.

Gregg: We have an albums’ worth of material written but really the focus is on getting out there live to make up for lost time! We’ve got a kick arse light show to show off too which we are excited about. Next year we’ll be looking to release an EP or split, let’s see what the world offers up!

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Rob: Facebook, Spotify, Instagram, You Tube, Apple Music, Amazon…the usual culprits. Tap out name in and we’ll come up. Head over to www.throneoficarus.com/ where everything you’ll ever need is!

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Rob: Cake, it says it on the packaging.

Gregg: Cake. When they bought out the Jaffa they realised that if they called it a biscuit it would be subject to VAT…So they called it a cake. Christ I’m boring.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Gregg: Nothing other than to say a massive thank you to Rick and the team at Ever Metal for the interview and support! Massively appreciated and keep up the good work guys!

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Mordred – The Dark Parade

The Dark Parade Album Cover Art

Mordred – The Dark Parade
M-Theory Audio
Release Date: 23/07/2021
Running Time: 34:08
Review by Simon Black
7/10

Mordred back in the day were quite the unexpected thing. Ostensibly a Bay Area Thrash band, they innovatively included crossover Funk sentiments and lots of turntablism, which was then currently coming into its own through the Hip-Hop scene (although as a musical innovation and instrument it actually dates all the way back to the experimental modernist musique concrète movement pre-World War 2 if you really want to be pernickety). Either way, when we all heard their Funk-Thrash hit floor-ripper ‘Falling Away’ all those moons ago, we realised this was something quite, quite different. And to be clear, the whole Nu-Metal movement may not have happened without these boys and then Faith No More, amongst others, dragging this quirky concept into the mainstream.

Mordred’s original label Germany’s Noise International back in the late 1980’s to 1990’s have an awful lot to answer for in this regard, both positively and negatively. For a label whose raison d’être was to stand against the tide of mainstream labels and carve a place out for the Metal and Thrash scene, they (or specifically their owner and A&R man Karl-Ulrich Walterbach) did a lot of damage to the bands in their care along the way in almost equal proportion to the good. Let’s be fair, without this label and its immediate predecessor Modern Music Records, it’s unlikely that we would have seen bands like Black Flag or The Misfits get any European distribution and the spin-off Noise label successfully broke the likes of Sabbat, Celtic Frost, Kreator, Running Wild and their biggest hit of all, Helloween.

That came at a massive price at a time when independent labels were carving a niche based on not shitting on your artists and giving them a bigger share of the albeit smaller revenue pot. This was the label of choice in Europe for the scene and most of us fans had no idea what was happening underneath the hood back then. However, for a label founded by a self-proclaimed anarchist (he was a political activist whose activities borderlined enough on terrorism for the German authorities to ensure he spent the early part of the 70’s in jail, and started his first label from a squat in Berlin) Walterbach frequently used the same capitalist dodgy business techniques as their major competitors. He dictated what he wanted bands to produce (change direction at your own peril), screwed the artists with shitty contracts and poor tour support and if they did not like what they heard, would bury the release, or abandon whole sub-genres on a whim. There’s a whole book out there about it which is worth a read (‘Damn the Machine – The Story of Noise Records’ by David E. Gehlke), which uniquely gives both the artists and Walterbach the chance to present their side of the story. The label didn’t survive the 90’s unsurprisingly and in the intervening years, its catalogue has since been sold from pillar to post, although it appears there are moves to revive the brand name at least.

Back to Mordred though, who clearly have their own view on this having experienced the negative side for themselves. Poised to show up in Europe in the 90’s to tour and promote the last of their initial albums “The Next Room” in 1994, they discovered that Noise had inexplicably buried it and given no tour promotion, causing the plug to be pulled on the tour before it even got going. This showed a huge lack of foresight, given how huge Nu-Metal would eventually prove to be and Mordred’s response to that behaviour was to stick two fingers to the label and disband, rather than get dragged into a protracted legal wrangling like that experienced by Helloween. And disband they did for some considerable time, although they resurfaced for live shows occasionally, but this release marks the first new full length studio recording since 1994 (having dipped their toes in the water last year with the ‘Volition’ EP).

A lot has happened since then…Nu-Metal – a genre directly influenced by Crossover acts like Mordred has come and gone, but there is a deep revival of many acts and sounds from that period, as old farts like me get retrospective and our children realise that some pretty good shit with depth and integrity actually came out of this period, rather than just the perms or mullets, garish clothes and hairspray they had been led to believe.

This album really does musically pick up where “The Next Room” left off, but does so with a distinctly updated and modern take. The line-up is pretty much back to their peak in 1991 with the exception of the drum stool – so this is perhaps unsurprising, although Scott Holderby’s vocals have definitely dropped an octave or two in range in the intervening years. It doesn’t make a difference, as he knows how to use his voice to good effect and leads us through the sometimes controversial lyrics with aplomb, with an emphatic use of diction that weaves you into the lyrical story. The first point that strikes though is the fact that the band have benefitted from a far richer production sound than they could afford back in the day, where the tininess of recording quality could often be masked by bucket loads of reverb, that’s a trick that does not work digitally and the band have made no attempt to sound retro, which works massively in their favour – making the album sound new, modern and relevant despite the retro mood evoked by the turntables.

They also remain unafraid to be experimental, for example the title track itself infuses all the Thrash sentiments and mood with a deep Ska groove that should not work, but absolutely does. Why it works after all these years is that they’ve retained their political attitude, the Thrash/Funk rhythmic groove and the ability to make catchy songs with shout along choruses. The deep rhythmic core of this lies with Art Liboon’s bass and the superb interplay between guitarists James Sanguinetti and Danny White. Where the album falls a little short is that the eclectic selection of song-writing styles on here make it hard to pin down, but what it lacks in by the numbers song-writing, it makes up for in innovation and challenges to the audience’s expectations. I hope this is not just a brief flash in the pan, but a true revival, as the world needs to realise how influential these guys were even if they never got to enjoy the rewards of their innovation back in the day.

‘Demonic #7’ (Official Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Demonic #7
02. Malignancy
03. I Am Charlie
04. Dragging For Bodies
05. The Dark Parade
06. All Eyes on the Prize
07. Dented Lives
08. Smash Goes The Bottle

LINE-UP:
Scott Holderby – Vocals
Art Liboon – Bass
James Sanguinetti – Guitar
Danny White – Guitar
Aaron “DJ Pause” Vaughn – Turntables/Keyboards
Jeff Gomes – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with DARKENING SKIES

Darkening Skies Logo

EMQ’s with DARKENING SKIES

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Ashburn, Virginia, based Progressive/Groove Thrash Metal band Darkening Skies. Huge thanks to them 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?

We are Darkening Skies. We play thrash metal with a groove and progressive edge. We met February 2014, after I put out a Craigslist ad, and fate was on our side, because 1) we met our drummer, Germ, and 2) No one we met was a Craigslist psychopath (the weirdest people we met were consistently vocalists. Go figure.) We started out playing covers and just jamming, and because local clubs were only hosting metal bands who played originals, we got settled, got the writing bug, and it kind of took off from there. Writing lasted some time, so we stuck with it till we got it. Our setlist back them consisted of our first album. We started networking with other local bands and promoters and started playing out. We had a few members come and go, a few try-outs that didn’t work out, but that’s par for the course…there isn’t really a blueprint for success as a band, but we learned as we went. I moved to San Diego a couple years back, and we agreed to keep going virtually, via Zoom/One Drive, etc. We were pretty much doing everything online anyways before (writing in Guitar Pro, uploading the tabs for the other band members to Google Drive, outside of our weekly practice, which helped us have really efficient practices when we got together because each member had their timing and rhythm already down) because we loved writing and collaborating so much and still had plans. Actually, we didn’t get signed by Jib Machine Records until I moved across the country! Before I left, we had recorded all the tracks for the EP we had started working on in 2018. I actually had a cold when I recorded the vocals to ‘Swallow Your Soul’, which was the final take. We finished those in a final session we got in at Germ’s house, days before I headed to the airport.

How did you come up with your band name?

It wasn’t clever, or anything. It’s an allusion to the Blood Moon Philosophy from the Book of Revelation, “…and the sun became black as sackcloth, and the moon became as blood”. But in the moment, I was just driving through a thunderstorm on the way to class, and I looked up in the sky and thought, most days just feel like a gathering storm to me. And, if it’s not a storm you’re standing in, then you must be standing in the eye and waiting for it to hit again. It sounded like a good name to go with. Germ and I met up to talk shop, and decided to roll with it. Good decisions happen over beer and peanuts!

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We are from North Virginia, just outside DC. The DC and Baltimore scene are pretty close. Germ didn’t grow up here, he’s from CT outside of NYC where the scene was great (So much music!) I was a Navy brat, born in Jacksonville, FL, and settling down in NOVA for about 27 years of my life. The DC scene is pretty cool, you might have to travel a bit for a show, but they are out there! There are some great bands here we’ve played with, or befriended: One Slack Mind, Omnislash, Rat Infested, Red Sword, Saint Diablo, Traverse, plenty more. Some great historical bands out of DC as well! Bad Brains, Minor Threat, Wrathchild America, Henry Rollins. Dave Grohl was from here, we periodically hear stories about him (His mom was a substitute teacher from Alexandria, VA, and even taught me in English class one day, at Centreville High School; swear to God. We got to ask her questions about Dave growing up [“Oh, he was always banging his drum sticks around when he was young, on the dash board of the car, everywhere. Drove me crazy!”] and she wrote “You guys ROCK!” on the chalk board before she left for the day). There’s another band, A Sound of Thunder (I love A Sound Of Thunder – Rick), a female fronted Power Metal band, and I’m friends with Josh, great guitarist and great guy. He’s always helped me with advice on how to be successful, and I’m really thankful for that, because they are a fairly successful independent band. They have an impressive following! Although calling them Power Metal is a bit constrictive, they really have a unique and powerful style all their own. Nina performed a theremin solo when they played live Rams Head in Baltimore! They’ve been really supportive of us!

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

“Jump Off The Bridge…  And Live!!!” our debut EP is available on all major platforms from Jib Machine Records: Spotify, Amazon Music, YouTube Music, and if you’re broke just stream our EP video from our YouTube channel! (But maybe buy a shirt or shot glass from our MerchBucket, too?!)  Despite the dark album title, there is actually a funny story behind the title. I used to play college basketball, and a teammate and good friend of mine, Kenny, and I were joking with each other about our musical tastes. I was hassling him about listening to Usher and smooth R&B before games (that slow, romantic soulful stuff), to get hyped. He responded with “Well, your music is so dark and angry! It’s like, “I’m going to jump off a bridge…and Live!!””. I always remembered that story and years later wrote a song about it, and it became the album title. I reconnected with Kenny on Facebook, years later, and told him that story. He loved it! One another note, we also just released a song on a Nihlistics tribute, covering ‘No Friends’. The Nihlistics are an old punk band from New York, where Germ is from. They just signed to Jib Machine, as well, and the tribute album is coming out this summer! It’s an honour to be on a label with them. They were really helpful during the recording of the song.; Germ sung that one. He couldn’t figure out the lyrics and didn’t know they were negotiating with the label at the time, so he looked them up on Facebook to ask what the lyrics to ‘No Friends’ were, and they were totally cool and sent him back the lyrics.

‘Organ Doners’ (Official Lyric Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Oh God, we have some huge influences. Germ loves Pantera, the big 4 of thrash and most major thrash bands: Exodus, Overkill, Testament, Nuclear Assault. Huge Influences! There have been many influences along the way, and I was more into Iron Maiden, Nightwish, Dream Theater, really progressive melodic stuff. I got introduced to a lot of thrash, after meeting the guys in the band. Then I discovered Death, and Chuck Schuldiner absolutely amazed me, especially with his later material before he passed; it was so technical and progressive! After Germ joined, I got him into Opeth, Nightwish and Mastodon. He got me into Fear Factory, DRI, Suicidal Tendencies, and Nuclear Assault.

What first got you into music?

A few things. When I was a kid, I remember driving around in the backseat of my parents’ car listening to all sorts of classic rock. Later, it was the local radio stations and MTV, especially Headbangers Ball. It was so cool to see these bands I couldn’t find anywhere else. When Germ went to college, he became a DJ at the radio station and did the metal show. Additionally, a friend of his there started up a magazine, and he and two of his friends did all the metal CD reviews, concert reviews and interviews. It was awesome, great experience in Florida in the 90’s during the height of the death metal scene! I discovered rock in 5th grade; some kid had brought in Bush – Sixteen Stone, and I got inspired to pick up a guitar and replicate that sound. I was also playing alto saxophone at the time, and played baritone sax through my freshman year of high school. After that, I quit to focus on learning guitar, bass, drums, singing, etc. I kind of fell into Nu-Metal in high school, and discovered heavy metal like Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath after that; it was a progression! After high school, I became a music instructor for B&B Music Lessons, which got me gas and textbook money during college, and kept me afloat during the recession in the 2010’s when I graduated and looked around for a job. Teaching for them, tearing around NOVA in rush hour traffic on my motorcycle, going house to house with a travel guitar on my back and teaching kids piano and guitar, was an amazing experience that I’ll never forget.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician, who would it be?

Germ said Gwar! He wants to be a guest musician at a Gwar show and then have them slaughter him afterwards. If I personally could collaborate with anyone, I’d love to work with Opeth, Nightwish, or Ghost Bath; they just write such incredible music! I play rhythm guitar, so I don’t mind backing up anybody that I can keep up with, haha. I’m friends with Dennis from Ghost Bath, and been to a couple of their shows in Richmond, VA. He’s an incredible musician, and such a driven guy, but he’s always made time to talk with me about music and life. I’d be honoured to open for them anywhere, anytime. (I think Germ secretly wishes he was Mike Portnoy.)

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

All of them! Festivals all awesome! Probably Maryland Deathfest, a Monster Energy Music Festival,  Hellfest, or DEFINITELY 70000Tons of Metal! The opportunity to play in front of all those people and with all those great bands, then hang out with them. I’d love to hit the festival circuit. You know, the big European Metal shows, not the county festivals where Hootie and the Blowfish or BTO play.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

From a fan? Nothing. Although Germs running joke is that one year, he got index cards for Christmas. Actually, that’s not a joke, it really happened. Sorry, no fans have ever given us anything other their cheers and applause, and a weird girl walked over to me to grace me with her attention, grabbing and admiring my Meshuggah t-shirt at a Rings of Saturn concert. We love the fans, its great hanging out with people and other bands at shows, and talking to/meeting new people over Instagram or Facebook.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Support underground music, never stop, never give up. Don’t let the scene die!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

I’d be intrigued to see what Jimi Hendrix would be doing if he was still with us. Kurt Cobain too, he was such an amazing song writer, I have to wonder what he would be writing now with the perspective of many years behind him. But hands down Dimebag Darrell Abbott. He was such a personable guy, and I have no shortage of second hand stories from buddies I know who were fortunate enough to meet him in person.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I love the creativity, it’s such a great cathartic self-expression of my darker emotions, fear, anxiety, aggression, depression. The tools, hardware, and software available to write and record these days are so readily available and affordable to musicians, now! You can spend as much time as you want (or can) working on music! The downside…the music business is tough. Streaming, as a fan is really awesome to access all the music you could never afford to buy, as an artist, you really don’t make anything from it. And the recording process, grinding out multiple rhythm guitar tracks, it’s definitely work, and a labour of love. I’m not a great guitar player; I’ll spend 2 hours looping a single 2 measure lick at half speed in Guitar Pro, trying to get it down. It can be very frustrating, and has forced me to work on my patience and anxiety.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Tough call, I can’t say go back to the way it was, because I believe in progress. Music and entertainment will evolve no matter what anyone does and it can’t be stopped. How the Millennials and Generation Alpha gets music today is way different then how we did. Germ has kids, he said they just don’t hang out and listen to music like we did. They get it all through devices and headphones (none of our giant speakers anymore!) or as part of another medium for entertainment, i.e., songs embedded as part of a video, or a game or show or something. So, I’m not saying go back to the old way, but the music industry as a whole, and there are exceptions, hasn’t adapted to modern entertainment very well. The record industry really screwed up, and blew its opportunity to get out ahead of file sharing and MP3s. And in hindsight, Lars was right; file sharing and piracy are still a huge issue, and it costs musicians and record labels millions of dollars a year. Bands today are basically t-shirt salespeople, as a result. They make money mostly on merch, and playing shows, not record sales.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Germ says Pantera, “Far Beyond Driven”; he can still crank that album all the way up!  He’s an avid runner, several of the songs from that album are in his running playlists. I’d have to say Iced Earth – “Horror Show”, and then Death – “The Sound of Perseverance”. Those albums were my gateway to heavier power metal and later Death Metal.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Honestly, I’ve totally adapted to streaming. I listen to music these days 99% of the time on YouTube Music, and my wife has Spotify. It’s definitely pros and cons; if the wireless connection is weak, I lose access, and of course if a server crashes, there goes your digital stream…but that’s where we are now.  “Jump Off the Bridge…And Live!!!” was released as a digital album as a result of this. Germ loves having his whole collection right at his finger-tips, and his collection is extensive…When my hard drive crashed, years ago, it took out a 40Gb collection of mine…I still have a small vinyl collection that I’ll play from time to time, though. I stopped collecting CD’s years ago, and only buy them from local bands at shows to show my love and support. Playlists are the best invention ever. Germ doesn’t miss having his CD’s scratched or melted in the car, and I don’t miss having the CD player not play it in the morning in the middle of a harsh NOVA winter because it’s too cold when the car starts up and the player won’t read the disk, or Germ pulling his tapes out of the tape player after it gets chewed up. Scratched records! He does have a few albums though that sounded better on the original analogue medium, old punk records for example.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

We played with a Baltimore thrash band called Omnislash at a small bar named Addy’s in Manassas, VA. Those guys are awesome and everyone reading this should check them out. They were really supportive of us, they stuck around for our set at 2AM, and they were totally into it! That was actually our 2nd show and they told us we sounded fantastic. They couldn’t believe it was only our second show ever. That was by far the most fun Germ ever had at a show. My personal favourite happened at a restaurant (that closed down afterward) named The Black Cat, in Alexandria. It was on July 13th, the night before my birthday, and many of my friends from the NOVA music scene made it out to support us and wear their Darkening Skies shirts. Most of A Sound of Thunder was there, and I got selfies with Josh and Nina. It was an emotional night for me, I thought I played the best I ever had, live, and it was one of our last shows before I took off for San Diego. With the pandemic, shows are starting up again, and one day I’d like to get on the road with Germ in a beat up van, travelling the West Coast, taking whore’s baths in gas station restroom sinks, etc. haha.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Well, I’m a special education teacher, and it’s just a path I followed by chance. I have a real passion for it; the service I do is incredibly fulfilling. It, of course, pays for my musical career, but takes up a lot of personal time and energy that I have to prioritize over music right now, unfortunately. Germ would  love to be a writer, and get into writing movie scripts.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Well, it would have to be someone who could cook, because I sure can’t. My wife is an incredible chef, she does it professionally, and would take care of the whole table with ease. Germ wants Gordon Ramsey. I would just sit there drinking and eating while I watch them work the kitchen. I’d say I’d want dinner with a bunch of dead people: Jesus, Jimi Hendrix, Dimebag, and then maybe Robert Downey Jr., and definitely Ryan Reynolds. The dude is hilarious.

What’s next for the band?

Great question! I moved to San Diego shortly before we got signed. We had over 50 songs written, and we both didn’t want to throw that away. We decided to do all our work online and share it with the world 100% digitally. We use tools like Guitar Pro to collaborate and write music (that’s why your music teacher tells you to learn to read music kids!). We also have a studio in Germ’s basement for recording. I’m house hunting right now, and plan to contract to build a badass studio in MY basement, next year. So, what’s next?  We’re going to promote the hell out of this album first, and we have a few lyric videos in the works that you’re going to love.  We have some merch ideas that will come out later on our MerchBucket, at www.merchbucket.com/collections/darkening-skies.
We’re mastering a special song for the holidays right now, and that will be out by Hanukah. Our next EP, “Demon Core”, will hopefully be out next winter. We’re going to take our time and get the recording the way we like it, then eventually have it produced and release the next album. I can tell you right now that the production and sound quality will blow our current EP out of the water. We’re more experienced with tracking, signal paths, etc., and Jib Machine Records has an amazing sound engineer, Brandon, who is gonna take care of us next year.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Twitter and Instagram are our most active. Youtube for official videos. We have a Facebook page, but really haven’t seen much activity on that platform lately.
www.facebook.com/DarkeningSkies
www.twitter.com/Darkening_Skies
www.instagram.com/drkngskies/
www.youtube.com/user/DarkeningSkiesBand/videos

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Um, yeah, I have no idea what that is. I’m kind of a bagel or English muffin guy.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

First, thank you so much for interviewing us! There are a billion bands promoting their creative works on social media, and we’re honoured to receive your attention. Thank you for your time as well! We really appreciate you supporting us! I think what you are doing is great! You’re supporting bands who are working hard and love what they do. Please keep doing it! Please support local and independent bands these days as much as you can! Kids, take the time and have the patience to learn a musical instrument; it will change your life.

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with TERRORFORM

Terrorform Logo

EMQ’s with TERRORFORM

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with San Antonio, Texas based Groove/Thrash Metal band, Terrorform. Huge thanks to guitarist/vocalist, Case Rodriguez, 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?

Case Rodriguez. Guitar/vocals. We’ve officially been around for over 3 years with this current line-up, originally, it’d been our singer Leo and I…and then our good friend Zach filled in on drums and then my nephews ended up taking the throne for Guitar and Bass when the time came…and we’ve been golden ever since.

Sick bunch here, man! I love these guys man, they’re such great musicians.

How did you come up with your band name?

At first, we were using a project name “Zero To Death” when it came time to debut live Terrorform became the name. Terrorform had been shot around once or twice and in the end that’s what we became.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We originate from the American Midwest, The Texas Gulf Coast. Our scene is beautiful, you can catch a variety of heavy hitting metal and rock bands where we come from. We have the Gulf-Coast-Thrash and it’s coming together strongly. Last GCT show we played the energy was real, the pit was live, guitars were smashed and everything was alright. Texas metal and rock is great man!

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

We have just released our brand new single ‘Intruder’ through PACgroove Records. Check it out on YouTube, Spotify and iTunes.

‘Intruder’ (Official Visualiser)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Hard to say, we have A LOT of influences going on.

Personally, Death and Megadeth have always peaked in my influence. I also love Jazz!

What first got you into music?

I was born and raised in the metal and rock family. It wasn’t until this one time I was 9 years old, my sister and I switched bedrooms and she’d left a “KISS Greatest Hits” in my new room, I put it in the Batman-Stereo and within 5 seconds my entire life was changed by a simple bass line.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician, who would it be?

I wish we could get Dani Rabin from, fusion-jazz-rock band, Marbin to play a solo on one of our groovier songs. Lol, that’d be something else.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

The “Hell and Heaven” fest in Mexico sounds like a damn good time.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Somebody else’s guitar pick! Im guessing it was more of thank you token, for them to give it to me. I have it in my wallet for when I have to one day battle the Beelzebub in a rock-off!

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Stay tuned is all! We’ve got a lot around the corner…lots of new music! Fast. Heavy. Tricky. Groovy. Shredding!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Well, there’s a lot of people I wish I could bring back, music wise, It’s between Dime and Hendrix. I can’t imagine witnessing something so surreal.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The art of it. It actually takes magic to bring music to life…especially live. Sometimes I wonder if music collaboration and composing is a rare phenomenon in the universe. Whatever it is we eventually figured it out and are here because of it.

Only thing I hate, is not being able to be even more of a musician than I already am.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Streaming, they can at least give us a penny per stream and not 1/3 of a penny. There should be better reception for these types of things. Without music there’s no streaming platforms. I’m sure there is way to make those ends meet just a little more than they BARELY already do.

Buy your favourite bands CD’s, Merch and vinyl!

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Adolescents – Self titled “Blue Album”. KILLER ALBUM front to back!

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Everything has its pros and cons. Vinyl is magic.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

We’ve played A LOT of really memorable shows small or large. I’d have to say it was back in 2018 when we first started and opened for DOYLE (Misfits guitarist). Because of another bands error we ended up being direct support.

At the start of our set, it was like “Who are you guys?” and towards the end of our set the crowd’s reaction was immense and overwhelming.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I wish and still want to pursue being a Voice-Over Artist for animated productions, cartoons and anime.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

My band and best bud/crewman Lol.

What’s next for the band?

New EP coming real soon! All that follows with a new release. Music videos, new artwork merch etc. We want to come to your town! Hook us up with your local fastest and grooviest and we’ll show up to throw down!

We are working ahead planning an even further releases. Might be just a single, another EP or Full length. Time will tell on that one.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

www.facebook.com/TerrorFTX
www.instagram.com/terrorformtx/
www.terrorformtx.bandcamp.com/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/1yV5uyS0DOeGrRYNWJX5Ky
www.youtube.com/channel/UC-cWMOml9GK1UnY-Rhv2v5A

Listen to our music on iTunes and good streaming services.

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Why not both? Hahaha. You could say the same for Terrorform.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

THANK YOU SO MUCH to all our followers and listeners. I can’t say that enough…in due time I hope you’ll dig what we’ve planned to further release. I hope to see the entire world someday.

Terrorform promo pic

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Thy Dispraise – Lost Era

Lost Era Album Cover Art

Thy Dispraise – Lost Era
Ghost Label Inc
Release Date: 20/02/2021
Running Time: 35:12
Review by Beth Jones
9/10

Music, as we all know, is the only truly universal language. It doesn’t matter where you’re from in the world, everyone can understand a sad song because of its minor key, or an uplifting song because of its pace. So, if you’re at a gig, and you and your neighbour don’t speak the same language, it’s still possible to feel connected to them through the shared understanding of the music you’re hearing. This works across every genre of music and should really be embraced worldwide for the magical thing that it is. However, in a good few countries, our wonderful genres of Rock and Metal, and indeed western culture, are frowned upon at best, and at worst are outlawed for being blasphemous and satanic. Iran is one of those countries. So, it’s not often that you get an Iranian band popping into your album review pile. It’s also one of the countries that we at Ever Metal are yet to get any hits from on our website, along with a few other countries, such as North Korea, for much the same reason.

But today, metal fans, I’m hoping that might change. Thy Dispraise, the subject of my musings here, are a Groove/Metalcore band from Iran, founded by Abtin Zahed, in 2012. Officially, they have released two singles, a self-titled EP, and this full-length album. And not only are they challenging the authoritarian rule of their country by simply existing, but they’re also pushing the boundaries even further, as they have a female vocalist as well. That is extraordinary bravery for their art, and before I even get onto the music, I’ll note that they have my absolute and utmost respect for their passion to fight against oppression.

So, onto the music. With the knowledge of their location, it’s not a surprise that, lyrically, their music is philosophical and socio-political at its core, but they do also include fiction and conceptual ideas. Musically, it’s crunching and full of progressive elements, and the vocal style is angry and brutal!! There’s also some really clever melody patterns and cadences that introduce the sounds of traditional ethnic, folk-based music, but It’s definitely full of groove too, in a very pleasing way.

The album starts with an instrumental soundscape, full of melancholic guitars, that doesn’t really give away many clues about what is to come. Then, as a complete opposite to the first track, ‘The Unknown’ comes along to punch you in the face, with crunching riffs, pacey rhythms, and harsh, growling vocals.

There are some fantastic and unexpected clean vocals dotted about too, ‘Wrong Core’ has a good example of this, which adds an extra depth to the song. I think this is one of my standout tracks of the album actually. It’s fast, groovy, and has some great soloing on the guitar.

But my favourite track on the album has to be the final track, ‘All Is Lost’. This brings everything back to the sounds of the opening track. It’s more of a mournful classic hard rock ballad, with beautiful clean vocals, exquisite vocal harmonies, and soaring guitar solos. However, it still has the punch of groove and more Modern Metal subtly planted in it. Stunning track.

My one criticism is I would like the bass to be more rumbly than it is. I think music with this much grit is really enhanced with some hellishly powerful bass, but it does tend to get lost behind the guitars. However, given the heritage of the band, and the circumstances which I’m guessing this album has been recorded, mixed, and mastered in, really who am I to criticize a single damn thing? This is a great album, from a band with immense courage, pushing boundaries and striving for equality, and any band doing that will always have my full respect and support. Peace.

‘Post-Ending Life’ (Official Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Stardust
02. The Unknown
03. Freefall
04. The Game
05. Outflow
06. Wrong Core (Tribute to Lamb of God)
07. Deceitful
08. Post-Ending Life
09. All Is Lost

LINE-UP:
Abtin Zahed – Guitars
Sheyda Mohamadi – Vocals
Alireza Shafiei – Vocals
Mohammadreza Rezaei – Guitars
Mohammad Mirboland – Guest Drummer

LINKS:

Thy Dispraise Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with TENSIION

Tensiion Logo

EMQ’s with TENSIION

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Brisbane, Australia based Death Groove duo, Tensiion. Huge thanks to guitarist, Phill Corpe, 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?

Phill Corpe, I play guitar, write & produce.

Myself and Travis hooked up in 2014, with nothing more than an idea to knock out a song or two, and just see if it works…turns out it did.

And we really haven’t stopped since then.

How did you come up with your band name?

Throwing ideas around between us…till something sounded not as shitty and cliché as other options. We started out with the name KILL[UR]SELF…which looked pretty cool aesthetically, but the name grated on me after a few years.

So, we changed it to TENSIION…sounds ok, looks ok….hasn’t annoyed me too much yet.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Brisbane, Australia…We have an insane amount of talent, in many genres, not just rock/metal…it’s a great music scene.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

“Subterfuge”. It’s a five track E.P…the single off it is ‘Dead Weight’.

‘Dead Weight’ (Visualiser)

Who have been your greatest influences?

It’s probably more of an era thing, more than specific bands, stuff that was happening mid 80’s to mid-90’s from varied genre’s, was a golden age that was a pretty big influence. Friends, experiences, travelling, collaborating…all plays a part.

What first got you into music?

Parents, then radio, tape trading with school friends.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician, who would it be?

The best collabs are with people you can connect too, learn shit from, and have a good time with…so whoever covers those bases and is up for it, then im down.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

I have no major aspirations of playing huge festivals…happy to roll as a punter…but, hey, I wouldn’t say no to Graspop. Great beer selection, and chilled as fuck.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Well, that question just highlighted the fact we dont get enough gifts.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

I’d happily tell each one personally, it won’t take long.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

We could do with seeing Lemmy again.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I love the creative part, and being able to take it wherever I want…you can get too close to the mix though doing everything yourself, which can make it hard to know if its shit or really good sometimes.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Fuck off Spotify…music has no value with streaming.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

My first record was “Mickey Mouse Disco”, so that’s pretty special.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I buy vinyl, always will…but they should all come with a download card now. I listen to music most in the car, so can’t live without digital.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Studio project only at this stage…but who knows, never say never!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Sheesh, ummm, other stuff I enjoy doing.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Friends…friends are the best.

What’s next for the band?

We usually take a break for a bit, recharge, do other stuff…then see if we’re up for it again after some time off.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

www.facebook.com/tensiionband
www.tensiion.bandcamp.com/
www.youtube.com/channel/UCIaCHtbcbYFLV4pvotf9YGA/videos

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

So glad you asked that question, I think they are!

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Cheers for checking out our stuff.

Tensiion Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with STRUCK/DOWN

Struck/Down logo

EMQ’s with STRUCK/DOWN

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Kent, England based Doom/Groove Metal band, Struck/Down. Huge thanks to vocalist, Linden Twyman, 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?

Linden Twyman, I am the vocalist of Struck/Down. Started in 2013, performing original music as ‘Wookie and the Wizard’ a 2 piece acoustic act (with myself and our guitarist Will). Eventually grew into Struck/Down, and after finding our missing members in the shape of Tommy, Ian and Andy we developed our signature doom/groove metal sound.

How did you come up with your band name?

I made a band name out of two different labels at random local practice rooms. I thought it sounded cool! The rest as they say is history.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We are from Kent in the UK. The scene has potential to grow into something more. There are many fantastic bands and loads of talent that come out of Kent. We have a few excellent venues (e.g., ‘The Booking Hall’ in Dover and the ‘The Forum’ in Tunbridge Wells). With more venues like this, there is real scope for a thriving scene.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

‘Charisman’, the third single of the upcoming EP release titled “From Demons”.

‘Charisman’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Black Sabbath, Black Label Society, Pantera, Black Stone Cherry, Mastodon, Deep Purple, Metallica.

What first got you into music?

I wanted to perform; looking up to my cousins playing in bands in the local scene I knew that was something I wanted a part of.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Miley Cyrus.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Ozzfest.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Applause.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Thank you for your support during these challenging and unusual times.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Dimebag.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

Hate most: gate keepers in the music industry (i.e., influential people in the music scene who decide what is and isn’t relevant to the scene) Love most: the effect music can have on someone on an emotional level and connecting with people through our music.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Distributing wealth amongst the musicians and not the shareholders.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“Dirt” by Alice In Chains.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

CD’s.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

The Alma Inn in Bolton, February 2020. Our last big gig before the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Full-time tattoo artist. Find him at @lindentwyman on Instagram.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Ozzy Osbourne, Napoleon Bonaparte, Barry Scott, Jodie Marsh, Russell Howard

What’s next for the band?

Continue pushing the singles we have already released, working towards the eventual drop of the EP “From Demons”, getting back into the practice room and hopefully (fingers crossed) gigging again soon.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

www.facebook.com/StruckDownUK
www.instagram.com/struckdown_official/
www.twitter.com/StruckDownUK
www.struckdown.bandcamp.com/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/4k0hYswFpdMPtuSMiiKlPr
www.youtube.com/struckdownbanduk

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Its. A. Cake.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Check out Father Bernard’s story through our single releases, starting with ‘Wandering Child’, to ‘Death Row’ and recently ‘Charisman’. Expect more singles in the coming months to continue our story. In the meantime, please follow our socials and check out our self-produced music videos on Youtube and our music on Spotify and all major streaming services. Support your local scene and your local bands, and we look forward to seeing you at gigs very soon.

EMQ’s with TILL DIE

Till Die Logo

EMQ’s with TILL DIE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Emilia-Romagna, Italy based Thrash-Groove Metal band Till Die. Huge thanks to drummer, Filippo Raggi, 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?

My name is Filippo Raggi, I’m sitting behind the drum kit. We started to play as a band in 1998 with the name of “Day of Darkness”  and turning it into “Till Die” about two years later, after the first line-up was fixed.

How did you come up with your band name?

Most of all it came up as the will to communicate the strength, determination and attitude that we put in our music proposal as in the everyday challenges that life presents us. So, never give up and always fight for what you believe in until you die.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We’re from Emilia-Romagna, a Region in the north of Italy. About the Italian rock and metal scene, I think that there is a lot of shit, like everywhere else, as well as many very good bands that, however, struggle to emerge. Italy doesn’t come up often when talking about heavy metal, to be honest I have to say that we are quite often looked upon unfavourably compared to our neighbours in Europe. Those willing to take the time to explore this much-maligned scene however will discover that there’s a lot to discover.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

Our first full-length album called “Ruthless”.

‘Lord Of The Worms’ (Audio)

‘The Grey Man’ (Audio)

Who have been your greatest influences?

There are many bands from which we have taken something, both current and from the past, but I want to tell you only one, the most important, they are called “Pantera”.

What first got you into music?

I think that everything happened when my brother Antonio, two years older than me, started going to High School in the early nineties. He first brought music at home, at first listening to bands like Queen, Guns N’ Roses, Europe and so on. It was during that period that I started to get my passion towards the music world.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

It would be great rockin’ and hanging out with Zakk Wylde!

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Having to choose I would say “Wacken Open Air”, because it is one of the biggest metal festivals in the world, drawing metalheads from everywhere. All the bands touring in Europe during that period will definitely play there.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

I’m sorry to disappoint you but I have never received any gifts from fans, if not a few drinks 😉

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

No bullshit! Trust something, be true and ruthless too…but with horns up!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Lemmy Kilmister, I don’t think he can be called “rockstar”, but for sure he has been the greatest rocker ever and I miss him so much.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

First of all, I thank you for calling me a musician! 😊

What I always enjoyed a lot is playing our own music in front of people who are partying and having fun just because they really like what you’re doing, it’s a great feeling.

Even if it’s never been our problem because we always played music mostly for ourselves, I think that the most annoying things are the pressures that comes from labels or promotion agencies when you reach certain levels of notoriety and the stress that comes when trying to conciliate musical commitments with everyday life. It’s the reason why many bands start having problems after they have achieved success.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Everyone should start again to rate bands based on the quality of their music proposal rather than the abilities to sell themselves on social networks.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“Vulgar Display Of Power” – Pantera

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I grew up in the nineties and still today I am very fond of CD’s.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

It was in 2013, when we played at “Sidro Club” here in Italy, opening for a really powerful Italian band called “Zolle”.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I can’t consider myself a musician at all. Let’s say that I could have become a real musician if I hadn’t decided to enrol in University of Architecture, becoming an architect today.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Thinking about music, a dinner to remember could be the one in the company of Phil Anselmo, Zakk Wylde and Dave Lombardo, then Joe Bastianich as the Chef to prepare the food and suggest us what wines to drink while eating. The fifth person could be a good Barman (passionate about rock and metal music) for the after dinner!

What’s next for the band?

Waiting to come back on stage as soon as possible we’re now working on new material and planning to record our first video clip for a song taken from our latest album “Ruthless”, so I recommend to stay tuned!

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

To stay updated on our activities you can come to visit us on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Here below are the links:
www.facebook.com/tilldieofficial
www.instagram.com/tilldie_official/
www.youtube.com/channel/UC5PawalEn113hSAz59QixmA

All our music is available on the main streaming platform:
www.open.spotify.com/album/7AfDBOBlNeYR52mn67rDGM
www.music.apple.com/us/album/ruthless/1517082052
www.tilldie.bandcamp.com/album/ruthless
www.amazon.com/dp/B089R1HLVF
www.deezer.com/it/album/152910842

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

I don’t know them…I’m sorry! I will check out on the web!

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you so much for your interest and to all those who will take a few minutes to read this interview I’d like to say make sure to check out our album “Ruthless” and feel free to let us know what you think about it! CHEERS FROM ITALY!

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with FORSAKING FATE

EMQ’s with FORSAKING FATE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with East London, South Africa based Melodic Death / Groove / Thrash band Forsaking Fate. Huge thanks to Grant, Rory and Alec for taking part. We are also incredibly proud to be premiering their brand-new lyric visualiser ‘Souls Of Demolition’ on Ever Metal today, 3rd December

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Grant: My Name is Grant Hensburg, I handle the guitars and the vocal duties. The band was formed by myself and our drummer (Rory Townes). We have been jamming together and have had various projects over the years that never came to light for numerous reasons. Forsaking Fate originally started as a four piece, but evolved to move forward as a three piece (I moved to handle the vocal duties). We met up with our current bassist (Alec Larsen) while on tour playing at one of his events. We needed a bassist for a future show and asked him to fill in, which he gladly did. It’s been history ever since!

Rory: Hey there! I’m Rory Townes and I play drums. I’m also one of the original founding members.

Alec: My name is Alec Larsen. In Forsaking Fate, I play bass and do some of the backing vocals live. Our future releases will have some of my vox. I joined Forsaking Fate as a session bassist when they parted ways with their previous bassist. I played a few shows for them before they asked me to become a permanent member. Rory and Grant have always played metal together and have been in a few bands, the final product of their years of experimentation is Forsaking Fate.

How did you come up with your band name?

Grant: I’ve always enjoyed the notion of being in control of one’s destiny or Fate so to speak and not letting anyone dictate to anyone what they should be doing with their life. Forsaking Fate was a fitting name that holds true to those values.

Rory: Well it sounds really cool and it’s a mantra for us – to take the chance before it’s too late – Forsaking Fate, the right to choose one’s own destiny.

Alec: Forsaking the Fate that you’ve been dealt and rising above your circumstances.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Grant: The band originated from the small town of East London of the Eastern Cape of South Africa. As mentioned, we met our bassist whilst on tour. The show was in the larger city of Johannesburg where Alec resides. As East London is very small, there is not much of a metal scene, so all of our shows require travel. However, the metal scene in Johannesburg is great. Prior to lockdown, there were major shows almost every weekend.

Rory: We’re from South Africa and our region is the Eastern Cape. When we play shows, the turnout is generally decent. I must say though the Eastern Cape crowds are wild, and the greater scene is in the bigger cities being Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban (aka KwaZulu-Natal). Those scenes are very awesome (albeit I can only speak for Johannesburg, as we are yet to jam Cape Town and Durban).

Alec: We are from South Africa. Grant and Rory live in East London and the metal scene there is quite small. I live in Johannesburg (opposite end of the country), which is a bigger city and has a much bigger metal scene.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

Grant: We recently released a playthrough video of our song ‘Retribution’ off of our debut self-titled EP and stoked to now be releasing the Lyric Visualiser for our track ‘Souls Of Demolition’ with Ever Metal!

Rory: Well, our first video was the lyric video for the ‘End of Existence’. To date we’ve released our debut EP and several supporting playthrough videos. We are currently working on some new material.

Alec: Our self-titled EP. We’ve released playthrough videos promoting the album.

‘Souls Of Demolition’ was exclusively premiered on Ever Metal 3rd December. Check it out at the following link!

Who have been your greatest influences?

Grant: Growing up, I would have to say James Hetfield and Dimebag Darrel.

Rory: For me, I’ve got to say Slipknot was huge, as well as Slayer and Metallica. In terms of drummers, Gene Hoglan, Nicholas Barker and Lars Ulrich.

Alec: Trivium, Mors Principium Est, Carach Angren, Dimmu Borgir and Septicflesh.

What first got you into music?

Grant: I started playing the piano in school and quickly got drawn to the sounds of guitars. When I discovered distortion and overdrive, there was no turning back!

Rory: I just really enjoyed the band vibe, clanning up with your buddies and going off the charts and jamming for hours, especially here there’s not much else to do.

Alec: I wasn’t interested in music until I heard System Of A Down for the first time. And since then, metal has been my music of choice.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Grant: Lamb of God!

Rory: Well, I’d love to jam with Jeff Loomis, James Hetfield and Ghostmane.

Alec: I’d love to collab with Andy Gillion from Mors Principium Est.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Grant: Wacken Open Air. It’s probably the most diverse and well attended show in the world when it comes to metal.

Rory: Probably Knotfest in Germany, as I feel our particular style of music is more prominent in Europe…or Rockfest in Barcelona!

Alec: 70 000 Tons Of Metal. Metal on a cruise ship…need I say more!

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Rory: Hmmm…I can’t say that on an interview, haha, let’s just say its personal…

Alec: Haven’t received any gifts from a fan yet.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Grant: Never give up!

Rory: Go forth and live my friend, go take the chance, and if you see me come on over and have a drink and a chat.

Alec: Thanks so much for the support. You are awesome!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Grant: Dimebag Darrel for sure!

Rory: It would be a duo I’d bring back, being Dime and Vinnie. Why, because you can’t have one without the other!

Alec: Chuck from Death!

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

Grant: The live performance is what I enjoy the most. Not performing is what I hate.

Rory: What I like is being able to express myself through other means than just talking. Playing live shows! What I enjoy least is people being mean in the scene.

Alec: The creative outlet is awesome. I hate the dreaded “E” word (Exposure). There’s often a misconception that because it is fun, that it should be done for free.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Grant: Everything!

Rory: That there would be more metal radio stations around the world, and that all bands that tour, get to tour in those huge busses (with everything catered haha)!

Alec: Make metal music more popular than the awful modern pop music.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Grant: “The Number of the Beast” by Iron Maiden

Rory: Black Dahlia’s “Miasma” – I really dig that album. And it was my first taste of that style of metal!

Alec: “Death Came Through a Phantom Ship” by Carach Angren.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Grant: It depends what perspective you’re looking from. I think they all have their place, but I think Vinyl tops it in my books.

Rory: Oh, I’m all for downloads hey, as it’s super cool to be able to scratch that music itch wherever you are.

Alec: CD’s.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Grant: The Wacken Metal Battle South Africa Finals (2019)

Rory: Geez, we’ve played so many. I rate the last show we played was really good. We jammed at Pool City in Port Elizabeth. The turnout was awesome!!

Alec: EP launch show in Port Elizabeth. The crowd was crazy!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Grant: Enjoying the finer things in life.

Rory: I’m involved in the electrical contractor trade. I’m definitely not an office guy!

Alec: Being a musician doesn’t pay the bills, so I’m a software developer.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Grant: Our top five fans, because they deserve it.

Rory: This is an interesting one…I’d invite Cory Taylor, Marilyn Manson, Shawn “Clown” Cranhan, Rob Zombie and Johnathan Davis.

Alec: I’d want all my deceased family to come back to life and to have a dinner party with them.

What’s next for the band?

Grant: New music and more shows, coming soon!

Rory: We’re currently getting over this Covid19 crisis, but we’re busy with some stuff and can’t say too much now.

Alec: A new EP in on the way…

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

FORSAKING FATE LINKS

www.forsakingfate.com
www.facebook.com/forsakingfate
www.instagram.com/forsaking_fate_official
www.tinyurl.com/forsaking-fate-youtube
www.tinyurl.com/forsaking-fate-spotify

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Grant: A little bit of the best of both worlds.

Rory: First of all, what is a “Jaffa Cake”…sounds like a trick question, so I’m going with cake!

Alec: Haven’t tried them, so I’ll guess…biscuit?

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Rory: Yes, let me swing a thank you right back at you for the opportunity to have an interview with you guys and premiere our new Lyric Visualiser with you! It’s really good work that you guys are doing – horns up to Ever Metal for sure!

Alec: Thanks so much for the interview – we appreciate the support.

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.