Anneke Van Giersbergen – The Darkest Skies Are The Brightest

The Darkest Skies Are The Brightest Cover Art

Anneke Van Giersbergen – The Darkest Skies Are The Brightest
Inside Out Music
Release Date: 26/02/2021
Running Time: 41:51
Review by Dark Juan
9/10

Alright, me old muck spreaders? It is I, your Northern overlord, Dark Juan, here once again to regale you with tales of derring-do and heroism on the field of battle. Not about me, you understand. If there were ever a time I was required to serve in the Armed Forces of the United Kingdom I’d head straight for the RAF’s recruitment office. You see, the RAF are sensible. Unlike the Army, the RAF sends the officers out to fight their war while all the lower ranks stay home and drink cocktails and occasionally tinker with something expensive and probably explosive. Let’s be honest, you wouldn’t want old One-Tooth Joe from the Black Bull pub on the corner operating a computer based killing machine worth £100million at supersonic speeds on the frontier of a hostile state. That’s what Wing Commander the Right Honourable Algernon Charles St. John Cholmondeley- Featherstonehaugh is for. One-Tooth Joe can be better employed putting oil in the trucks at the base where the good WingCo will be landing after dropping a thousand pounds of laser-guided explosive death on some miscreants somewhere in the Middle East…

None of which has anything at all to do with what I am supposed to be doing, which is listening to the latest record from the absolutely wonderful Anneke Van Giersbergen. Yes, the estimable and superb vocalist of The Gathering, VUUR, The Devin Townsend Project and many other records has returned with a selection of new music. A warning – if you are expecting the face of Anneke that is the metal queen version, you are going to be gravely disappointed with this album as this is a record that proves the versatility and uniqueness of Anneke Van Giersbergen as an artist in her own right, untrammelled and unconstrained by genre or style. Indeed, the actual music on this record is incredibly sparse, most of the time just some simple percussion, some strings and an acoustic guitar, and the clear and bell like tones of Anneke’s unique voice, sometimes multitracked into some sublime harmonies.

The album is based around the fact that there was a period in Anneke’s life and marriage that involved profound upheaval and heartbreak and this album is her catharsis. To that end, the lyrical content is woundingly personal and honest when discussing feelings and the sense of loss and suffering that she had been experiencing at that time, and the internal discussions she was having with herself. The title itself suggests that in order to get to the sunlit uplands of life you have to go through the black times to appreciate the light. Which, to be fair, during these current times of pestilence and lockdown rules, is a timely reminder that suffering now will bring reward in the future and that you must remain focused on attaining normality again.

Musically, the album reminds me in many places of Kate Bush and Cyndi Lauper – not because of the voice (because Anneke is quite unlike any vocalist ever) but because of the sheer disinterest in fitting in with any standard or genre. ‘Hurricane’ is the most Bush like of the songs on here, with choppy, unpredictable harmonies and vocals and a strange sounding acoustic riff. It is musically intrepid even with the simple instrumentation and multitracked harmonies and cheerfully stomps all over any notion of fitting in. Talking of stomping, ‘Survive’ does just that, percussion building into an almost war dance while Anneke builds from a soft, lilting vocal into a powerful contralto shout and drive for the survival of her relationship. This is the theme of the whole record – Raw emotion and agonising honesty over music which is just a vehicle for what Anneke wants to say to her husband. It is not a record that was ever planned to be released, in my opinion, but it is a public affirmation of love and a desire to make everything right again and to never stop fighting for her marriage. In that regard, it is one of the heaviest records of all time because of the naked heartbreak and pain on display, but it is by no means a heavy metal record. Not even a little bit.

If anything, it is the aural equivalent of Kintsugi – The Japanese art of repairing broken things with precious metals, because the value and the beauty of the repaired thing and the continued love and appreciation of it only increases. This album is musical Kintsugi and that is its sole purpose. Taking that as a basis for my critique, then, Anneke Van Giersbergen has repaired her relationship and shot it through with veins of silver and gold and made something stronger than ever before and musically has welded those precious metals into the open wounds of suffering she was displaying and sealed them closed with profundity and honesty and gold and silver and made herself transcendental. Therefore, this record is a colossal success on that front.

But, because I am a hard headed and black hearted bastard, I have to remember that I write for a heavy metal website and this ranks among the least musically heavy records I have ever heard. However, one of my scoring criteria is that the music has to be interesting, and Anneke van Giersbergen delivers interest in spades. The lyrical content couldn’t be any heavier if it tried (I’m not talking about dragons and fucking demons and succubi here, I’m talking about the themes of loneliness and suffering and love dying and there being desolation all around you – that shit is heavy as FUCK and if you disagree you’re frankly wrong, mate) and although the music is gentle and sweet, it still holds you in some form of rapture. The sheer beauty and versatility of Van Giersbergen’s voice is amply displayed and flits from soft, almost inarticulate (the kind of sounds an upset child might use to comfort themselves) crooning through to full powered, vibrato fuelled rebellion, and her delivery is never less than utterly flawless. This is not a record to listen to. This is a record to feel, and frankly Dark Juan is fucking disgusted with himself for actually having been affected by this album and discovering that he hasn’t actually purged all human emotion from his twisted black soul. Although that could be because I have adored Anneke Van Giersbergen’s voice since The Gathering released ”Mandylion” in 1995.

I’m extremely conflicted. This album is a work of emotional subtlety and exemplary songwriting prowess and musicianship and deserves a huge score because it is a tumultuous rollercoaster of emotion and pain and redemption, but it is not a heavy metal record. Fuck it, I’ve decided…

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Anneke Van Giersbergen 9/10 for a record that doesn’t just tug on the heartstrings, it rips them out and beats you to death with the wet ends. Moving, affecting and utterly captivating, this record is worth the expense simply for the cathartic effect it provides when you want heavy emotion but not heavy sounds. However, I have deducted a mark because it isn’t a heavy metal record and I write for Ever-METAL.com. This should not be taken as a demerit, it’s just that Anneke’s album ain’t a metal one although it is heavy as fuck.

Agape (Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Agape
02. Hurricane
03. My Promise
04. I Saw A Car
05. The Soul Knows
06. The End
07. Keep It Simple
08. Lo And Behold
09. Losing You
10. Survive
11. Love You Like I Love You

LINKS:

Anneke Van Giersbergen Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ 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.

Cultt Of She – The Void

The Void Album Cover Art

Cultt Of She – The Void
Self-Released
Release Date: 31/12/2020
Running Time: 47:50
Review by Beth Jones
7/10

It’s been a busy few weeks here at Ever Metal HQ, and I’ve not really had chance to listen to much music. But we’re still getting a steady flow of new albums in, so I thought it was about time to get cracking on them. I also decided that I’d have a change of direction, as my playlists recently have been distinctly prog metal! And so, to that end, I chose an album at random to tell you about. The winner of my lucky dip pick was New Jersey hard rockers, Cultt Of She.

I have to admit that they’re a completely new name to me. Cue some research! According to their press release, “Cultt Of She is the evolved form of Rock veterans, Roulette. It’s the same lineup with a new name but the real change is with the band’s sound.” Call me behind the times, call me what you will, but I’ve never come across Roulette either, well not this Roulette anyway! Everyone’s got to start somewhere, right?!

So, what do they sound like? Well, they’re billed as hard rock, with some punk, and a serious metal edge. A bit of everything really! Let’s go with Alt rock. I think that’s the closest I can get. Who needs genres anyway! The important thing is, is it any good? And the answer to that is…yes. I like it!

The album starts with ‘Cataclysm’. It’s quite a proggy little number, and it certainly does pack a riffing punch. There’s a lot of cross rhythms and different sections that all slot together in some sort of alt alchemy. The one constant across it all being the vocals of Jess Bariletti. She has a lovely clear tone to her voice, but with a rock edge. Mike Haider also provides backing vocals, which are akin to Evanescence and Linkin Park.

Track 2, ‘Led Astray’, continues in pretty much the same way, until just over 4 minutes in, when it drops into a slower, outro section, which also acts as the lead into next track, ‘One Bad Day Away’. This one has more of a punk edge, but still has some really great cross rhythm sections.

There’s some almighty drumming to start track 5, ‘Everybody Hates Me’. This leads off into a combination of full-on fast punk, interspersed with what I can only describe as ‘Thrash Rock’! Punchy drums, riffage aplenty, and some slightly bizarre samples! In true punk fashion, that tracks over in around 2 and a half minutes!

Track 6, ‘Ghost Town,’ changes things up, with more of a classic hard rock feel, but again those cheeky little rhythm change sections, and some crazy chord progressions, play a part here. Things continue like this until track 9, ‘Falling Into’. This one is a much more technically complex track, and again dabbles on the outskirts of prog with its cross rhythms. Joe Scarpino does a very competent job holding the rhythms together here. About halfway through the song, we get some really dark, whispered backing vocals, and it almost takes a turn into black metal for a brief time! Because, you know, why not! This track is probably my favourite on the album, although it’s hard to choose, because there’s so many different elements going on throughout.

The final track, ‘Moving Mountains’ brings everything together, with some real punch, and is a great way to finish the album off (although it does fade out at the end. GAHHH!). All in all, I think this is a very listenable album from a band who have a lot of skills, and a vast number of influences. And considering it’s a debut album, with this new sound, I think the band should be very pleased with it.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Cataclysm
02. Led Astray
03. One Bad Day Away
04. The Things That Haunt Me
05. Everybody Hates Me
06. Ghost Town
07. Second Sight
08. Why Did Jim Root Leave Stone Sour?
09. Falling Into
10. Moving Mountains

LINE-UP:
Jess Bariletti – Vocals
Joe Scarpino – Drums
Anthony Panduri – Bass
Greg Scarpino – Guitar
Mike Haider – Guitar/ Backing vocals

LINKS:

Cultt Of She Promo Pic by Jeff Crespi Rocks

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 said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with SOULWOUND

EMQ’s with SOULWOUND

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Kouvola, Finland based Metal band, Soulwound. Huge thanks to drummer, lyricist & composer, Janne Huusari, 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?

Name’s Janne Huusari, I’m the drummer and lyricist and one of the composers of the metal band Soulwound. The band is the direct result of me, and my brother Niko (guitar) learning to play and jamming with some friends back in the 90’s. The band solidified in 2005 when we settled on the name and released our first demo in 2006, after which we began playing live shows. We’re currently on our third full-length album, and our younger brother Mikko (guitar) has also been in the band for the past two albums.

How did you come up with your band name?

It’s taken directly from the tracklist of the digipak version of the “Obsolete” album by Fear Factory. We had a really hard time coming up with a good name that wasn’t already taken, and out of all the suggestions we had, Soulwound stuck.

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

Kouvola, a town in southeast Finland. The local scene was really thriving when we began playing live in 2006, with plenty of bands and venues, but since then, almost all of those bands have called it quits and many venues have closed down.

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

We just released our third full-length album, called “The Suffering”, in September 2020. It was originally supposed to come out in May, but then the coronavirus outbreak threw a spanner in the works.

‘The Cult Of I (Official DIY Video)

‘Pleasures’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Probably the classic metal we listened to as kids, everything from Metallica to Slayer. Those formative influences serve as the foundation for our sound, but of course, we have plenty of other, even heavier and more modern influences that we like to throw into the mix.

What first got you into music?

Music itself, namely my mom’s vinyl albums. I’d have her put on some stuff like Black Sabbath, Van Halen or Iron Maiden for me back when I was too young to even use the record player myself. In fact, I don’t remember ever really listening to children’s music. I went straight for the good shit, and “Master Of Reality” by Black Sabbath left an ever-lasting impression on me.

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

I’m gonna go off the beaten path here and say that I wouldn’t mind doing something completely different from the intensely physical metal drumming I do with this band. As a big fan of the Silent Hill game series, I’d love to play drums for Akira Yamaoka in some kind of a project.

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

This answer is far from inventive or surprising, but Wacken Open Air springs to mind immediately and I don’t think it needs any introduction.

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

Hmm, either we haven’t really received anything weird or I’ve just completely forgotten about it.

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

Fuck trends and what other people like. You are not a sheep and society is not a herd. You have a brain with the capacity to form your own views and opinions, and you’re squandering it and doing yourself a major disservice if “fitting in” and following others is a priority for you.

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

Dimebag Darrell. His death shocked me more than any other celebrity’s death, especially considering the fact that he was known for his friendliness and fun-loving nature almost as much as his insane guitar skills. And who knows, maybe Vinnie Paul would still be alive as well if that tragedy hadn’t taken such a toll on him.

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

Both the creative expression and the live experience, which are completely different things but equally satisfying to me. What I hate is that not only is playing music a stupidly expensive hobby, but it’s also really difficult to do it effectively when every band member has a job and different schedules.

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

I’d like artists to be compensated better for their music. Of course, digitalisation has destroyed record sales, but who knows, maybe things would be different if record labels had immediately tried to adapt to it and somehow monetize file sharing instead of trying to fight it and maintain the status quo.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Oh man, that list would be way too long. There’s no way I can even narrow it down to ten, but I can point to three albums that I listened to as a little kid and are pretty much responsible for my love for heavy music: “The Number Of The Beast” by Iron Maiden, “Fair Warning” by Van Halen and “Master Of Reality” by Black Sabbath.

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

I love the convenience of digital music, and I actually listen to music mostly as MP3s while running or streams on my computer. That being said, I also like having physical CDs and looking at the artwork and reading the lyrics. I also like the sound of vinyl, but I don’t have a record player myself. Cassettes, on the other hand, I consider to be a completely shitty format and I’m glad I no longer have to bother with them.

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

I can’t really name any one gig that would be the best, but the most memorable one for me was when we got to play in a decommissioned mill in the Slovenian mountains on our European tour in 2014. That was an absolutely fantastic experience that I could have never anticipated.

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

We don’t play music for a living, and I like the fact that we don’t have to deal with any of the pressures of trying to make it as a professional musician. We all have jobs, and I’m a translator by training and profession.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

You know, I’m such an introverted and antisocial hermit that I’d rather not even have any sort of formal dinner party. I prefer a relaxed setting and people with whom I can relax and be myself.

What’s next for the band?

It doesn’t look like we’ll be playing any more shows this year (2020) and there’s no telling how the coronavirus situation is going to develop, so we’re probably going to start putting together songs for our next album. We already have plenty of rough ideas to work with. If things go well, we’ll do another European tour next September.

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

Our Facebook page is where we post our latest news and information. As regular working dudes, we simply don’t have the time or the energy to create a big social media presence for ourselves by constantly pumping out content.

www.facebook.com/soulwoundband

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Now there’s a question I’ve never though about. In fact, it has never even occurred to me that people could consider them to be anything but biscuits, as that’s what they’re called in Finnish. I’m partial to the raspberry variant, personally.

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

Thank you! To all the readers who made it this far, please check out our album “The Suffering” if you’re into aggressive and intense metal with an uncompromising attitude. This stuff is coming straight from the heart and I believe you’ll be able to hear it. Cheers!

Check out Tammy’s full review of “The Suffering” here:

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 CORROSIVE SWEDEN

EMQ’s with CORROSIVE SWEDEN

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Hudiksvall, Sweden based Metal band Corrosive Sweden. 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?

Corrosive Sweden was formed in 1997 and have since then released a number of recordings and performed on a number of clubs and festivals mainly in Sweden. We have had the opportunity to play with bands such as The Hellacopters, Amaranthe, Engel, Dead By April, Corroded, Freedom Call, The Kristet Utseende, Smash Into Pieces, Art Nation, Eyes Wide Open among others The band was also invited, as special guests, for a gig with the Backyard Babies.

We are currently working on the new album. The first single ‘Devil of Mine’ was released in October. As many other colleagues in the music industry, we had to cancel the tour planned for 2020. “We are really looking forward for Covid to cease. Meanwhile, we are spending time with our families and creating music” The recording of this album, is as the previous album, made in our own studio Dark City Sounds. The vocals are recorded by P-O at POL Studio.

We have been described as a hybrid between old school Trash and Melodic metal. The five band members all have different backgrounds when it comes to personal musical influences. It is a wide range from Classic Hard Rock, Trash Metal, Punk, Power Metal and Modern Metal. This makes the sound of Corrosive Sweden unique, but with recognizable fragments.

How did you come up with your band name?

There were several bands called Corrosive, so we added Sweden.

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

Hudiksvall, Sweden. The Metal and Rock scene is pretty bad actually.

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

It´s called ‘Devil of Mine’. The song was released 2.October 2020

Official Video

Who have been your greatest influences?

A lot of bands. Kiss, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Megadeth, Helloween, Slayer, Meshuggah, Deftones, among others. We have an influence playlist on our Spotify page. Follow that one

www.open.spotify.com/playlist/37i9dQZF1E4F3hUzJjwlZj

What first got you into music?

Johan: My cousin showed me Accept and Twisted Sister. Then I bought my first electric guitar.

Christer: I heard Kiss – “Dynasty” when I was six years old. Then I was sold for life.

Peter: I grew up in a home with a dad who plays guitar and a big brother who plays drums, so the music has always been there. I started my first band with some friends.

Daniel: My brother.

Alex: I originally started out singing just for fun, but eventually took the opportunity to perform on stage during my pre-teen years. In my teenage years me and some of my classmates decided to start a band and that’s when I discovered my love for playing the bass.

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

A big band with the ambition to help us move forward in our careers would be very fun.

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

Rock in Rio – Because it’s a huge festival.

Wacken Open Air – Because Germany is a dream we’ve had for a long time.

Sweden Rock festival – Because it is the world’s nicest festival to be at, as a visitor.

Graspop Metal Meeting – We just love it.

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

Foam plots. It is a Swedish Christmas candy. Taste like rubber!!

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

Help us in these difficult times. Stream and spread our music. Buy our merch. Come to our concerts when the pandemic subsides. It´s a tough time for bands like us these days.

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

Johan: Freddie Mercury

Christer: Hard question. Probably Eric Carr.

Peter: Cliff Burton.

Daniel: The Rev from Avenged Sevenfold.

Alex: Chi Cheng from Deftones.

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

Love writing, recording and playing new music.

Hate is a strong word, but we dislike that many people want our money but do not want to work so much for it. We also dislike many people who don´t think that writing music is a real job.

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

Hard question. But getting paid fairly for what you do would definitely make it easier for us.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Christer: Kiss – “Lick It Up” or Helloween – “Keeper Of The Seven Keys Part 2”

Johan: Megadeth – “Rust In Peace”

Peter: Therapy – “Troublegum”

Daniel: Metallica – “Master Of Puppets”

Alex: I Don´t know!

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

All of them but vinyl is the coolest.

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

A small festival in Sweden called Metalpark. Great response and a fantastic crew.

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

Johan: Lighthouse Keeper.

Christer: Probably a Tennis Pro with 22 Grand Slam Trophies.

Peter: Industrial worker.

Daniel: Soccer Pro with Zlatan Ibrahimović.

Alex: Perhaps a photographer.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Christer: Paul Stanley but he probably would not come because of the corona so then it must be Michael Kiske or John Petrucci.

Johan: Dave Mustaine.

Peter: Kerry King.

Daniel: James Hetfield.

Alex: Ozzy.

What’s next for the band?

We have just recorded two new singles that will be released soon. At this moment, we are recording two more that will be released in the spring of 2021.

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

Spotify, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, our one website, and of cause many other digital platforms, Apple music etc.
www.corrosivesweden.se/
www.facebook.com/CorrosiveSweden/
www.instagram.com/corrosivesweden/
www.twitter.com/CorrosiveSweden

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

A biscuit. Very good with Swedish coffee. But it´s better with a chocolate ball, cinnamon bun or a Swedish Kladdkaka. Try it if you get the chance 😊

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

Thanks for the support and may the force be with you.

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 BROKEN CALLING

EMQ’s with BROKEN CALLING

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Kent, England based Metal band, Broken Calling. 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?

Jack: Drums.

James: Bass & Vox.

Martin: Guitar, the crowd and questionably vocals too (I’m just Connors’ hype guy).

Connor: I’m the guy with no musical talent whatsoever apart from being pretty decent with my mouth.

Callum: Guitar.

How did you come up with your band name?

Jack: It’s a reference to an old band that four of us used to be in, we thought we had found our calling. Turns out that was bollocks.

Martin: It looked like one of them cork boards from a detective movie, so many ideas. Most of them terrible. I mean we nearly went with Bison, but none of us are packing enough to pull off jeans that tight…

Connor: We were almost called Bison but then we came up with the idea that we had a Calling in a previous band, and that was Broken because it all went to shit. So Broken Calling was our way of getting over that, like how batman used his fear of bat’s and stuff.

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

Jack: I’m from Kent where the scene is pretty dead, but I live in London now and it’s pretty sick up here.

James: South Kent; it used to be alright, but it has significantly deteriorated over the years and become a ghastly pop punk and ska cesspit.

Martin: England and no one’s playing right now so the scene is non-existent. Apart from that there are healthy pockets of alternative culture. Most of the time they don’t have the money to go to shows though…

Connor: I’ve pretty much been around the scene in London/Kent for a while and it’s had moments, but right now because of Covid it’s slowly up the creek without a paddle. Here’s hoping we can come back to shows.

Callum: I’m from South Kent and the scene is pretty dead, everything is going up to London where the scene is healthier.

What is your latest release?

Jack: ‘Redemption’. An angry song about current situations.

Martin: It’s a socially conscious song about the struggles of today’s political climate and how we can manage it in a way everyone can agree with. Honestly. Boris’s new walk out tune, he’ll love it.

Connor: Our new single ‘Redemption’ is a giant F-U to the government and how they have ballsed up this entire year, and even had the gaul to blame us for it. But yeah, I reckon Boris cranks it up.

Callum: The new single Redemption, heavy riffs, hard-hitting lyrics and we got Lord Faarquad to commence the mosh.

‘Redemption’ (Lyric Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Jack: My greatest influences have been John Otto, Chris Adler, Eric Moore and Tony Royster Jr.

James: Drewsif Stalin, Beyond Creation, Karnivool – it’s important to have a generous blend of technical groove.

Martin: The OG… Mr Grohl, Jim Root, caffeine, my tripawd dog, and honestly any music that makes me wanna play.

Connor: Linkin Park, most MySpace metal core, my Mum, Dad and Honey Jack Daniels.

Callum: Killswitch Engage, Mick Thomson, Suicide Silence, Gojira and Dethklok, a good heavy riff can’t be beaten.

What first got you into music?

Jack: My dad used to have a guitar lying around that I would pick up when I was about 5 and just make noise on. Then as I got older, I wanted to piss the neighbourhood off, so I got drums.

James: I grew up around it since my Dad was the drummer for The Charles Dexter Ward Experience (once one of the most popular goth bands in Kent). Started on drums because of him, but over time I gravitated towards bass and now I have a fully-fledged Degree in music!

Martin: I blame Raphael. Not the turtle, My childhood best friend. He played, so being an insecure 11-year-old, I wanted to play too. Then it became an obsession and there went my education. I might have been a biochemist if it wasn’t for that mustachioed git…

Connor: My Dad introduced me to Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden and Bruce Springsteen of all things. Then he let me buy “Hybrid Theory” by Linkin Park. I was already singing in school, so I just started singing to rock songs and preferred the melodies to pop. Joined my first band in ’09 and the rest is drunk history.

Callum: I’ve known James for years, he dragged me along with getting into playing music, we were always trying to make each other better at playing and so he’s now stuck with me.

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

Jack: Probably Mark Morton. His riffs are sick.

James: Drewsif Stalin; Dj0nts for dayzzzzz.

Martin: I’d love to do something with the guys from Nothing More.

Connor: After their latest release, definitely Bring Me The Horizon, because I don’t know what would happen, but it would probably sound dope.

Callum: Misha Mansoor would be amazing to collab with, the djent is insane.

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

Jack: Coachella, so we could melt some commercial faces.

James: Whichever festival means I don’t have to suffer surviving in a tent.

Martin: Rock in Rio. Possibly the biggest crowds in the world and come on man Brazil!! who wouldn’t?

Connor: Download, my fave festival, and I’m with Jack on playing Coachella, that would be an experience.

Callum: Knotfest, so many big names, it would be so much fun.

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

Jack: The Flu.

James: “Is ThAt An EiGhT StRiNg BaSs?!” ngl, I love it.

Martin: Not sure if it counts as a gift but someone bought a ridiculously sweaty thong off me straight after I had played a show wearing it. I hope you are a happy smiling bearded man, wherever you may be.

Connor: One of my friends gave me a Milkybar Chocolate bar halfway through a set, to be honest the mid gig snack was a nice thought.

Callum: Getting decked in a moshpit almost straight away.

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

Jack: Spread our music as much you can and don’t let anyone tell you’re replaceable.

James: If you’re thinking of playing an instrument, go with Bass – it has so much untapped potential.

Martin: Hiiiiiiiiiii!!! Hopefully, I can come jump on you all again soon.

Connor: If you can’t love yo’ self, HOW IN THE HEEELLL YOU GONNA LOVE SOMEBODY ELSE! Can I get an amen up in here! Also don’t let the bastards get you down, you’ll be fine.

Callum: you guys make the shows amazing, can’t wait to see you at the next one.

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

Jack: Vinnie Paul.

James: None; everyone is too busy focussing on the people of the past and ignoring the greats who are in the making today.

Martin: Chester. There is only one, all other Chester’s are inferior.

Connor: Definitely Chester Bennington.

Callum: Mitch Lucker, I’ve always wondered what more he could’ve brought to the deathcore scene.

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

Jack: Being a drummer and being a drummer.

James: (Pro) Your band becomes a friend group, and ultimately family. (Con) I get ill after EVERY SHOW…thanks pathetic immune system.

Martin: Love it all except. No money, no sleep, no time, no clothes, broken things, James dying, Connor snoring, my feet and McDonald’s. For real though the only thing I dislike is being disabled after a run of shows because I was a bit over zealous in causing myself grievous harm in my youth and I still haven’t learnt to hold back.

Connor: Love the shows, the people and making music. I hate the fact that sometimes people can be very selfish and bitey. There’s enough room for everyone if you let people in, gatekeepers can do one.

Callum: Love playing shows, hate the pre-show anxieties.

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

Jack: definitely the price per stream that artists make. It’s a joke.

James: the extreme reliance on border-line porno like music videos in modern pop music…people need to actually listen to the music, not just gaze at the titties.

Martin: The over reliance on acts that are past it. No offence Bruce but you can’t headline Download for the hundredth time, go have a nap. Or you’ll end up like our James.

Connor: Definitely would change the amount of money musicians make per stream and just for music in general. It’s literally pennies.

Callum: Everything shifting to being online, yeah, it’s useful to listen to music and watch shows but you lose the experience of being there.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Jack: Lamb of God – “Ashes Of The Wake”

James: Fields Of The Nephilim – “Mourning Sun”

Martin: Frequently changes but right now Night Verses – “Lift Your Existence.”

Connor: Linkin Park – “Hybrid Theory”

Callum: Bury Tomorrow – “The Union Of Crowns”

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

Jack: Vinyl for sound, Downloads for convenience. CD’s are dead.

James: Vinyl for me, but only because I grew up surrounded by it – the sound quality is superior but boy, the price is often ridiculous.

Martin: CD’s for collection because only hipsters have vinyl players (and the sound difference is negligible apart from added scratches and pops.) Download for actually listening to music. Headphones are a must because I’m nice to other people like that.

Connor: I’ll listen to anything if it sounds good, I’m pretty simple.

Callum: Downloads for the convenience, CD’s for the collection.

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

Jack: our second show was at Facedown on Halloween and we tore that venue a new one. We dressed as Mario characters!

Martin: As just a sheer victory the last show before lockdown. I had finished a twelve-hour shift and had an hour to get to London. I made it in time for change over, we ripped the roof off, I climbed into the roof. We did a photoshoot and none of us caught Covid. All round victory. (*note from James* – I still got ill, just nothing interesting)

Connor: Definitely our EP show with our mates in Sidelines! Just a massive night of great music and great hangs.

Callum: Gonna have to agree with Jack and say Facedown, it showed just how hard we could go and bring in the crowd.

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

Jack: I used to be pretty sick at rugby and was going to play at county level, but I was spending too much time on music, so I gave it up!

James: I’d have most likely ended up going into working for a model railway company helping to manufacture model trains and related items (I’m a real-life train nerd, no joke, I love trains). I’ve been part of so many exhibitions and even helped out in some overseas places.

Martin: I’d probably be a lot more financially stable let’s be honest. Music’s been such a big part of my life for so long I’m really not sure, the only equal driving passions have been science, history parkour and family. So, some weird blend of the above?

Connor: Probably in a skip, but I’d have more money than I do now.

Callum: Probably something using chemistry, maybe pharmaceuticals.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Jack: Ewan McGregor, Eminem, Mickey Flanagan, Chandler Bing, Donald Trump.

James: Dave Filoni, Josh Zerkaa (or literally any Sidemen member), Bill Bailey, Courtney LaPlante, LifeOfBoris!

Martin: Binging with Babish, David Eric Grohl, Derren Brown, Russell Howard and Maynard-James Keenan (You know he would bring the best wine).

Connor: Gordon Ramsay, Corey Taylor, Mark Hamill, Mike Shinoda and Frankie Boyle.

Callum: Jeff Goldblum, Joe Duplantier, Jared Dines, Oli Sykes and Harrison Ford.

What’s next for the band?

Jack: We have some new bangers in the pipeline which I think we may drip feed as singles to keep us relevant and in people’s ears. We’re gonna do a proper vid for ‘Redemption’ as soon as lockdown is over too.

Martin: Hopefully surviving the pandemic. My live music rehabilitation unit keeps telling me one day at a time but honestly. These twitches are getting out of control.

Connor: The same thing we try to do every night pinky, try to take over the world.

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

ALL OF THEM!!!! (Even tinder)
www.facebook.com/BrokenCallingUK/

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Jack: they suck whatever they are

James: By definition and also by Law they are a cake; This is because they go hard when they are stale rather than soft. Plus, there’s different Tax regulations for cakes than there are for biscuits (btw Jack, hating Jaffa cakes is the highest form of Heresy)

Martin: I concur with Jack. The best snack to go with a hot beverage is foxes golden crunch creams and I will fight anyone who disputes that fact in true renaissance duelling style (frilly shirts compulsory) (*note from James* – Donuts are better, I therefore challenge you).

(*note from Martin* – I accept your challenge. I choose squirtle and attack you with surf. Suck it donut boy!! Oh wait, your donut has dissolved, mwahahaha).

Note to both of you: Custard Creams rule all.

Connor: Whatever it is you can have it, not a fan.

Callum: Jaffa Cakes get boring after the first 2, there are much better cakes out there, put the Jaffa Cake down and get some cheesecake, treat yourself.

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

Jack: People = Shit. Fuck racism.

Martin: Behave through the lockdown so we don’t have to socially distance any more…Please…I miss hugs…and sweat.

Connor: Go check out the new single ‘Redemption’ and like our socials! Otherwise we kill the puppy.

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.

Various Artists – Fangs: Volume 2

Various Artists – Fangs: Volume 2
Mongrel Records
Release Date: 25/09/2020
Running Time 71:41
Review by Chris Galea
6/10

Unfailingly ubiquitous and adaptable, Metal always finds a way to reach every part of the planet, but some areas’ contributions tend to get overlooked. “Fangs: Volume 2” is an attempt to address that transgression by shining some light on a few Metal bands from Africa. Most of the bands in this sampler are from South Africa (which is where its label, Mongrel Records, is based) but there are also tracks from the opposite extremity of the continent.

Here’s a quick rundown of the album’s contents…

Facing The Gallows is a Hardcore band from South Africa and ‘Small Hands’ sounds furious if a tad unimaginative.

Papang are from Réunion, a small volcanic island in the Indian Ocean. I didn’t quite like the singing style and guitar solos in ‘My Engine Burns’ but the track contains some great Stoner Metal riffs.

Dividing The Element are a Nu Metal band from Zimbabwe. The band’s track has Limp Bizkit written all over it. Some hand percussion sounds give the song a nice touch. Despite straining my ears, I couldn’t understand the lyrics – then I discovered that Dividing The Element sing in a native Shona language.

Next are Ill System, from South Africa, who keep the Nu Metal vibes flowing but in a creative and original way.

We remain in South Africa with the next track, ‘Shadow Beast’ from Monstroid. I’m hearing some catchy Fuzz in the footsteps of Kyuss and Fireball Ministry. Decent stuff.

State Dependency, from South Africa, ply a sort of generic Groove Metal with occasional atmospheric spells.

Albinobeach are an instrumental band from South Africa…the band provides the music and as a listener you let your mind provide the lyrics. Groovy, sometimes psychedelic, ‘Jugga’ hovers back and forth between Progressive and Alternative Rock.

Vielikan seem to have their own brand of Black Metal. The vocals sound intense and the band says they’re inspired by Russian and Slavic folklore, which is odd coming from a band based in Tunisia.

Next door to Tunisia at the Northernmost regions of Africa is Algeria, which is where Lelahell are from. Lelahell was the only band in this compilation whose existence I was already aware of. The band plays classic and brutal Death Metal. A technical, well-recorded and incisive track.

It’s back to South Africa with Demogoroth Satanum, whose Black Metal sounds raw and chaotic with weak riffs often overshadowing the vocals and other instruments.

We remain in South Africa next with Ethyl Ether and there‘s a significant difference in style. Is this Psychedelic Blues, Stoner Rock or Alternative Rock? I’m undecided where to pigeon-hole this music but the band calls their style Agro-Pop so Agro-Pop it is. To be honest it’s not something I’d usually be caught listening to, but all instruments are well-played and the songwriting is pretty decent too.

Vulvodynia, from South Africa, play a Death Metal that is brutal, filthy and visceral. Apparently ‘vulvodynia’ is a chronic, severe vaginal pain with no identifiable cause. Charming.

Kishi are from Angola…a Portuguese-speaking country on the South West coast of Africa. The band describe themselves as Stoner Rock but what I’m actually hearing is a soul-crushing atmospheric Doom Death. I sense that Kishi really seem to grasp the essence of Doom.

Rounding off this sampler are Scarab and with a moniker like that the band can only come from Egypt. It’s hard to compartmentalise the band’s music but Dimmu Borgir comparisons probably wouldn’t be too far off the mark. Dramatic, intense and epic Death Metal with great guitar melodies and a very professional sound.

I know that Metal in the African continent is much richer and more diverse than this compilation might suggest. Nevertheless, “Fangs…” provides a useful insight for Metal communities beyond Africa. So, Kudos to Mongrel Records for putting it out.

My overall impressions are that some bands seem intent on doing what standards require but need to inject more freshness into the music. Others have interesting ideas but haven’t yet developed them well. A couple of bands are already on their way to greatness. Of course, it’s hard to be objective by listening to just 1 track. So, head over to the bands’ sites, check out anything that has piqued your fancy and make up your own minds. Links are provided.

“Fangs Volume 2” official sampler promo:

TRACKLISTING:
01. Facing The Gallows – Small Hands
02. Papang – My Engine Burns
03. Dividing The Element – Pakaipa
04. Ill System – Ego Check
05. Monstroid – Shadow Beast
06. State Dependency – Bridges
07. Albinobeach – Jugga
08. Vielikan – God(s), Love And Life
09. Lelahell – Adam The First
10. Demogoroth Satanum – The Apostate
11. Ethyl Ether – Ode
12. Vulvodynia – Anthropophagus
13. Kishi – Kianda
14. Scarab – Coffin Texts

LINKS:
FACING THE GALLOWS:
www.facingthegallows.com/

PAPANG:
www.facebook.com/papangmusic/

DIVIDING THE ELEMENT:
www.facebook.com/DividingTheElement/

ILL SYSTEM:
www.facebook.com/illsystem/

MONSTROID:
www.facebook.com/monstroidfuzz/

STATE DEPENDENCY:
www.facebook.com/StateDependency/

ALBINOBEACH:
www.facebook.com/albinobeach/

VIELIKAN:
www.facebook.com/Vielikan/

LELAHELL:
www.facebook.com/Lelahell/

DEMOGOROTH SATANUM:
www.facebook.com/Demogoroth.legion/

ETHYL ETHER:
www.facebook.com/ethyletherSA/

VULVODYNIA:
www.facebook.com/vulvodyniaslam

KISHI:
www.facebook.com/Kishistoner/

SCARAB:
www.facebook.com/Scarabegypt

MONGREL RECORDS:
www.facebook.com/mongrelrecords/

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 THE FEDERATION

EMQ’s with THE FEDERATION

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Fosen, Norway based Rock/Metal band The Federation. Huge thanks to rhythm guitarist Pål Vegar Leth-Olsen 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 a rock/metal band (not very sure what we are really) called The Federation. We come from the middle of Norway where the most exiting spice available is salt.

The band started out in late 2018. Started out as a cover band with the intention of maybe writing some original songs. Now we have released our debut album, released our first music video and are currently writing for the next album.

The band consists of 5 guys with receding hairlines and a great fondness of gravy.

Magnus Helmersen – Vocals
Ørjan Vingen – Bass
Pål Vegar Leth-Olsen – Rhythm Guitar
Thomas Strand – Lead Guitar
John Roger (KingJr) Leseth – Drums

How did you come up with your band name?

We were throwing different names on the table and we were working with a designer at the time testing out ideas. Then he came up with the logo we are currently using. We thought it was cool, so we needed to figure out something with the letter T and F. We almost went for Troubled Few, but since we are Norwegian it was a little difficult to say, so we chose The Federation.

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

We are from the middle of Norway in a region called Trøndelag. The area has several big bands, but the biggest international band is probably TNT (10 000 Lovers). I think also Bokassa had their start in this area. Other than that, we have several big national acts. The local rock/metal scene is very healthy. There are plenty of bands in the area and we all get along great. However, as in most other places in the world there are a lack of live scenes to play. So it’s always difficult to get gigs.

Fortunately, we are hitting a certain level, popularity wise, so we usually get the gigs we want.

Other bands worth checking out in the area are Prospect, Soaris, Divided Multitude, Axe Toss and Blodsmak.

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

Our latest release is ‘Flesh Gazer’, a single recorded and filmed in the rehearsal room. Mixed, mastered and released by us. We are a DIY band and at the moment, as many others, doing everything ourselves.

Our debut album, “Hungry Sleep”, we also did ourselves. We rented an old school and recorded almost everything there. Then we went to my home studio and recorded overdubs etc.

‘Flesh Gazer’ (Live from TF HQ)

Who have been your greatest influences?

There´s so much different stuff that each and everybody likes in the band so hard to really say something specific. We got; Pål, who is the main songwriter, is a metal head, Thomas likes Guns N’ Roses and that sort of thing, KingJr has a love for Stained, Ørjan loves funk, Magnus has a love for a more power metal sort of thing. The combination gets really weird.😊

What first got you into music?

I’ve always been into music, didn´t play any instrument before I was 18 when I first picked up the guitar. Metallica – ‘Black Album’ was a turning point for me personally, the distorted sound of the guitar was a life changer. After that I was all rock/metal.

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

Oh, that’s a difficult one. But I think we would choose the guys in Kvelertak. The way they produce and the setting of the mood in their songs is brilliant. I’m a riff guy, basing everything on “the money riff”, but Kvelertak is doing so much more.

Other than that, it must be Tom Rikard Ostad in Blodsmak. His songwriting skill is off the charts.

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

Wacken in Germany, Lollapalooza in the States and 70,000 Tons of Metal at sea.

Wacken and Lollapalooza for the sheer number of people attending, 70,000 Tons for the experience and meeting up with likeminded.😊

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

We haven´t received any gifts as of yet. The vocalist has had several offers in the physical kind of way, but that kind of doesn’t count.😊

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

Thank you for sticking with us and all the crazy stuff we are doing, Thank you for the support, looking forward to seeing everybody again.😊

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

Dimebag Darrel, without a doubt. He wasn´t done yet, he had so many more face ripping riffs left in him and went WAY to soon.

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

The thing I like the most is the freedom to create whatever I want. To just sit there for hours struggling to come up with a riff or a melody, and the intense sense of proudness when you find something that just nails it. It’s a rare feeling, but oh so worth the struggle. When you find something that hits the spot with an audience who have never heard the song as well is absolutely awesome. The highs are so high, the lows can´t compare.

The thing I hate the most is after the show, when we have to rig our gear down. We usually take 30 minutes after the show to talk to the fans and just live a little in the awesome feeling you have after a show. But after about 30 minutes we start wrapping cables and carrying amps. That’s the most boring thing we do.

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

Another difficult one, cause there are so many problems. On our level we aren’t really deep inside the industry yet, but we are getting a taste of it, and it’s a little sour. One thing is the industry itself, the constant struggle of payment, ownership, distribution etc etc. This has been explained so much by people who are more into the business than us, so we leave it at that.

One thing that we are seeing on our level is bands who “cheat” themselves to popularity. Buying likes, views and what not. You can´t blame the industry for being crooked when you don’t play honestly yourselves. Because this is a struggle. Struggle to get gigs, struggle to figure out social media to get your music out there, struggle to understand the financials etc etc. It’s a part of it. It’s like getting a six pack, if you want it, you need to hit the gym hard.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Dream Theater – “Scenes From A Memory”. That album was an absolute EAR opener!

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

Vinyl, any day!

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

I have two for different reasons.

First was with my old band where we got to play with the biggest symphony orchestra in Norway, KORK. And it was broadcasted on the biggest TV channel in Norway, NRK. The production of that gig was immense, and the feeling when you have a symphony orchestra backing up the riffs is a “holy shit” feeling!

The other is a festival in Norway called Totsåsrock. We were one of the first bands to play so we didn´t think there would be as many people, and there weren’t. But after playing the first song the place was packed and everybody was digging the music and having a good time.

It’s so much fun when you are the outsider, and just kill it on stage 😊

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

I’m a sound technician as well as musician so I would probably just do that more. Now I don´t get to do it that often.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Lemmy Kilmister –-Cause he got stories to tell.!
Big Mick – Cause of the stories from a technician point of view!
Stephen Hawking – Cause it´s Stephan Hawking!
Christopher Hitchens – Interesting bloke!
Joe Balaguer – He´s guitars are gorgeous!

What’s next for the band?

Next up are several festival gigs in 2021, then we focus on the new album. It´s going to be heavier and more technical. And then, hopefully, we get to tour abroad a bit. God damn Corona destroyed any hope of travelling in 2020.

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

We try the best we can to use Facebook, Youtube and Instagram. But we are old bastards (31-40 years old), so we are struggling to keep up with the technology. 😊

www.facebook.com/TheFederationMusic/
www.instagram.com/thefederationband/
www.youtube.com/channel/UCdqkSjbuUJb-geyY8Tsh5yg

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Biscuits god dammit!

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

Thank you again for having me, and please check us out if you wish!

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 WAR DRUM SYNDICATE

EMQ’s with WAR DRUM SYNDICATE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with US based Rock/Metal band War Drum Syndicate. 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 (lead vocalist Chieftain Hawks & guitarist Mike Laws) originated War Drum Syndicate in 2016 as a duo songwriting team with intentions to complete a full line-up adding a bassist and drummer, in which we succeeded. We have completed our debut EP “Premise of the Enlightened” – due to drop this Fall and have broken ice with a few awesome shows. We are a fresh new band and ready to keep growing.

How did you come up with your band name?

Mike and I wanted to use something pertaining to rhythm, war and tribe. Mike threw out War Drum and I said good, but it needs another word, and I threw out Syndicate, we agreed and the rest is becoming history.

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

We are from United States of America, the metal scene is awesome here.

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

‘Seasons Fall’ single. It’s a laid-back rocker with a huge catchy chorus. It’s about when people make up lies to burn you down, but you always rise above the ashes like the Phoenix.

‘Seasons Fall’ (Visualiser)

Who have been your greatest influences?

That’s a tough one, so many. Sevendust, Killswitch Engage, Pantera, Alice In Chains, Slipknot, Tool, Jimi Hendrix, Soundgarden, Faith No More, Incubus, Shinedown, Deftones, Stone Sour, Staind, Linkin Park, Lamb of God, Bullet for my Valentine and so many many more!

What first got you into music?

We all have been into music since we were in the womb.

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

So many greats to choose from here. Sevendust, Staind, Stone Sour, Mike Patton, Ronnie James Dio, Slash, Aaron Lewis and so many more…

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

Rock in Rio comes to mind. The reason is because it’s one of the largest and in such a cool, beautiful, amazing location. We are not picky, any huge festivals with people ready to rock would be great!

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

Vegemite. A fan from Australia sent it.

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

Never give up, appreciate what you have and work hard to achieve your goals/dreams.

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

That’s a tough one too. Jimi Hendrix, Randy Rhoads, Lane Staley, Chris Cornell, Vinnie Paul, Chester Bennington, Dimebag, Prince and the list goes on!

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

It’s enjoyable to create something to connect with masses amounts of people around the world and possibly help them and their lives and make them feel better, even if it’s just for a few minutes at a time.

Never hate it but it’s difficult to get the right people together, to achieve musical goals.

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

We would make it more possible for bands to have more control over making more  money etc!

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“The Real Thing” – Faith No More. It’s such a diverse album but could pick many more…

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

They are all the best because any way to listen to music is great!! It’s great to have the choices, every listener has their own feel.

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

The best gig so far has been with bands ‘A Light Divided’ & ‘Call It Home’ from the North Carolina area. It was at one of our favourite venues here at home in Huntsville, Alabama called Shagnasty’s.

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

It would be cool to be a doctor.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Joe Rogan, Eddie Hall, Tommy Chong, Jennifer Aniston and Mike Tyson.

What’s next for the band?

We are currently releasing our debut album and have already begun writing the follow up. We are also gearing up for performing some festivals in 2021 and also some music video production starting soon.

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

YouTube, Facebook, Instagram!
www.facebook.com/wardrumsyndicate/
www.instagram.com/wardrumsyndicate/
www.youtube.com/channel/UCIfigSSM8SCJEgBYLQhPH4Q

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Not familiar with them but they sound tasty…

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

Thank you for your time!! We appreciate all the help we can get and wish our fans the best.

Please visit our Facebook, YouTube and Instagram to stay tuned for releases, concert/festival dates etc.

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 MELTED BODIES

EMQ’s with MELTED BODIES

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Los Angeles, California based, impossible to pigeonhole, zany, incredibly clever and superb Melted Bodies. Huge thanks to Scott, Houda and Ben 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?

Scott: Scott – drums. Andy and I went to go see the film “Why Don’t You Play in Hell?” and during our discussion afterwards, he’d mentioned he’d started recording some demos. Andy asked if I could play thrash-metal drums –– which actually made me nervous because I hadn’t played in years –– but I said fuck it, when can we start rehearsing?

Houda: Houda – Bass and backing screams. I’d known Andy for years, he posted that he needed a bass player to play a show in a month. After one trial run with him and Scott, it felt like we’d been a playing together for years

Ben: Ben – Keyboards, Synths, and Programming. I actually booked Melted Bodies to play the first ever show when it was basically just Andy, Scott, and Houda. I was doing a weird art show and I knew that Andy and Scott had just started a band, so I wanted them to play. Shortly thereafter, I joined as the keyboard player.

How did you come up with your band name?

Scott: I did my part to pressure Andy into keeping it. I forgot why we’d ever considered changing it.

Houda: It was a group effort to make sure Andy didn’t change it

Ben: I can’t believe Andy ever wanted to change it, but he tried, and failed, because I love the name Melted Bodies.

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

Scott: Los Angeles, CA. The scene here is psych/garage/indie rock as far as the eye can see. It took a second for us to find our footing in the local scene. That said, there are some really hard, exciting, genre-bending acts. The DIY scene was a blast before COVID hit.

Houda: LA born and raised! I’d been part of the punk scene since I was a teenager, and always stumbled across metal shows. It’s all DIY and warehouse shows and based on word of mouth.

Ben: We’re from LA, but personally I’m from the South-eastern border of Ohio and West Virginia on the Ohio River. I grew up in a small town, but oddly enough, we absolutely punched above our weight in terms of a local “scene”, though it was mostly fringe Christian hardcore bands. Zao is actually from my hometown, and I briefly used to party with those dudes when I was younger.

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

Scott: Our LP; “Enjoy Yourself”.

Ben: Like Scott said.

‘Ad People’ (Official Video)

‘Eat Cops’ (Audio)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Scott: Being a drummer, I’m oftentimes a slave to the beat. I grew up liking things all over the map. My first love was film scores, actually. From there, the earliest acts I remember liking were Nine Inch Nails, Beastie Boys, Talking Heads. I loved TOOL growing up. Aphex Twin. I wasn’t as much of a metalhead like some of the others in the band. My older brothers got me into hip-hop, techno, trance, drum n bass, stuff like that. I feel everything I’ve listed informs anything new I’ll like to a degree.

Ben: I actually spend a lot of my time listening to experimental electronic music, so I think some of what I really love that’s adjacent to the music we make is stuff like the Aphex Twin, Simian Mobile Disco, and of course it’s hard to not play synths in a “hard” band without giving some credit to NIN and people like Josh Eustice and Alessandro Cortini. Nowadays, I just listen to a lot of Hawaiian music though to be honest.

What first got you into music?

Scott: At first, I liked music as a compliment to films. Moving pictures were my first passion, and I’d spent a lot of my life wanting to direct films. What got me into music was the choice of Home Economics, Shop Class, or Concert Band. I chose band. I had shit for breath control, so I chose percussion. My parents loved the idea of not having to buy me an expensive-ass Saxophone… little did they realize.

Houda: I grew up with music always bumping in the house, being it Persian Pop music or 1960’s/70’s jams that my mom used to listen to growing up. There happened to be a guitar in the house and one day my dad asked if anyone wanted to learn to play it, I raised my hand. I was fortunate enough to experience the cream of 90’s R&B first hand then pivoted to punk then hardcore as I got older.  Growing up bands always needed bass players, so I started translating my guitar skills and have been having a great time.

Ben: My mom was a music teacher, so I started playing piano when I was probably 4-5, and was in choirs etc., basically until I left college. So, I suppose in that regard I was classically trained, though I haven’t retained as much as I’d like. However, in my early teens I started getting music magazines and just started downloading or buying anyone’s record I thought was interesting, which evolved into my current taste and experience with music. As someone in their early 30’s now, Napster and Illegal downloading was honestly a huge part of the way I found so much of the music I love, which is why we’re so psyched that our record is all over the illegal downloading sites now. Hopefully, kids find it and get into us in the same way I did with bands like Megadeth, Norma Jean, Armin Van Buuren, and all the other strange artists I downloaded on accident.

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

Scott: Maybe Bjork or Arca??

Houda: Carly Rae Jepson

Ben: Probably ICP or Steely Dan. ICP would just be wild since they’re such world builders, and I just happen to be listening to Steely Dan right now.

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

Scott: Primavera Sound, probably.

Houda: Honestly all the trendy big-name ones just to confuse the hell out of everyone

Ben: Hellfest, and honestly Coachella. It’s a bit of a thing since we’re in LA of course, but also, it would be fun to introduce a bunch kids trying to see Dua Lipa to our band.

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

Scott: We have fans?

Houda: Them showing up at our shows

Ben: We had a kid come up to us after a show in a tiny bar in Long Beach once and ask for our autographs. We were barely a band at that point, and the show had like 8 people there, but evidently, he’d seen us already like 6-7 times. It was really touching.

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

Scott: We exist!

Houda: Tell all your friends

Ben: Tell your parents to get you Melted Bodies merch for whatever holiday you’re trying to celebrate.

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

Scott: Probably someone more recently deceased. Bodies are a mess when they decompose.

Houda: Bowie

Ben: Obviously, GG Alin.

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

Scott: Love: when you fall into that unspoken flow with your fellow bandmates while jamming. It’s like when everyone takes the same psychedelics and you inexplicably start seeing the same visuals. Well, not really, but drugs are cool anyway. Hate: loading gear.

Houda: The joy of being loud. Being one of the few and far women out here, I get to take all the frustration placed on me by societal and gender norms and completely trash them. Growing up I’ve been told to stay quiet or make myself small, being a musician gives me confidence to call out every-day bullshitery and to have self-worth. Hate: bands that don’t quickly get off the stage after playing. You can talk to your friends afterwards; we have a ton of gear to set up so kindly move.

Ben: I love trying to figure out how to make things emotionally compelling using a limited set of tools, and that distinct feeling of finding the groove or the system that clicks with every other piece of the musical puzzle. Getting in the pocket if you will. I hate playing shows to empty rooms and trying to fake that I like it.

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

Scott: I’d guess I’d change more about humans and how they value art. Because our interests indicate we do, but our actions don’t always reflect that passion or interest. I don’t expect to be a millionaire, but a liveable wage as an artist feels reasonable.

Houda: It sounds cliche but that’s because it’s STILL FUCKING HAPPENING: misogyny. I’m tired of sound guys questioning my knowledge, door guys assume I’m a girlfriend, “you’re actually pretty good!”, “they have a chick in the band cuz that’s trendy”, and so on and so forth. Boys need to grow up. (I am fortunate that my bandmates are men)

Ben: I suppose I’d change the way the algorithm works. The way that the Spotify’s of the world dictate the music ecosystem, but also play gatekeeper in a seemingly very impersonal way that doesn’t make you feel like you’re a part of a music community when you’re discovering or endorsing a band.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Scott: Nine Inch Nails – “Broken”. Or “Ex-Military” by Death Grips.

Houda: Robyn – “Honey”

Ben: Indian – “Guiltless”, 2 8 1 4 – “Birth of a New Day”

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

Scott: Depends. Vinyl for my living room. Cassette for my truck. Downloads for everywhere else and in between.

Houda: Music being available for everyone to access is a win, no matter how you connect with it.

Ben: That’s a tough one. Probably downloads I guess because I can listen to a bunch of totally new music having no idea where it came from or when I got it.

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

Scott: Probably at The Factory alongside Retox and our friends Assquatch. It was hot as hell. The walls were sweating. And inevitably we blew a circuit with all of our gear on stage.

Houda: Scott and Ben called out my favourite shows 😊 The more DIY shows hold a special place in my heart.

Ben: Damn, good question. I think the last show we played before the quarantine was one of our best, with our friends CUNTS, Skullcrack, and Wacko. The cops showed up after our set and they brought helicopters and everything.

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

Scott: Will someone pay me to go camping?

Houda: Comic artist

Ben: I’d probably be an engineer or a social scientist. Or maybe a taxidermist.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Scott: Depends what we’re eating. If you can’t dig-in with reckless abandon by my side, I don’t want you there.

Houda: Desus & Mero, Trixie & Katya, and AOC

Ben: The three guys from Last Podcast on the Left, Sarah Squirm, and Sasha Grey

What’s next for the band?

Scott: More music. More albums. More videos. More weird stunts.

Houda: Locking ourselves in a cabin in the woods and writing new material

Ben: We’re starting to work on the next record, and hopefully plenty of touring and playing shows in places we haven’t played yet.

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

Scott: All of them to some degree?

Ben:

www.instagram.com/meltedbodies/
www.meltedbodies.bandcamp.com/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/3l1Z9XFIBCJXaxfpussnIZ
www.thehyv.shop/collections/melted-bodies

Just for starters.

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Scott: There are no absolutes in this world.

Houda: Trick question: it’s pudding (did I get it right?).

Ben: It sounds like they’re a cake. Can’t argue with their own logic.

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

Scott: Buy. Consume. Give us your money.

Houda: Fuck me. Fuck you.

Ben: Tell em that Melted Bodies sent you.

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 CHAOS DOCTRINE

EMQ’s with CHAOS DOCTRINE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Johannesburg, South Africa based Metal band, Chaos Doctrine. Huge thanks to vocalist ‘Dr D’ 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?

Chaos Doctrine blends industrial and symphonic elements with more old school thrash/death metal to create a familiar but novel style of metal. I originally formed the band in 2011 with bass guitarist and backing vocalist Phil Carstens, who was in a band called DedX with me before that. We had multiple member changes through the years. Alec Surridge joined on guitar in 2013, and Rory Townes on drums in 2020.

How did you come up with your band name?

We were originally called Subhuman Race, but the name did not stick (our first studio later was named Subhuman Studios as a homage to this name!). We needed a name that both sounds like our music and means something to us – Chaos Doctrine does both of those! The name is inherently a contradiction, as there can be no doctrine with chaos, or chaos amid doctrine. The name brings an image, a visual, and a sound identity for the band.

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

We are from Johannesburg in South Africa. The metal/rock scene here has gone through peaks and troughs through the years – currently it is slowly trying to recover from the COVID-19 impact and the associated lockdown we had down here. We hope to see a surge again, as was the case in the middle to late 90’s.

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

We are currently finalising our sophomore album, the name of which is still to be announced. We have released the first single from this album, Father Grigori, on all media platforms already, including a lyric video on YouTube. There are two more surprises coming on this track before we go onto the next one!

Our self-titled debut album was released in 2018 and an alternative mixes EP called “The Chaos Chronicles Volume I” was released in 2019.

‘Father Grigori’ (Official Lyric Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Our influences vary quite widely – with different band members listening to different things. I am very old school, Phil is into death metal, Alec likes more technical stuff, Rory is huge on thrash. But some bands that come to mind immediately are SLAYER, Testament, White Zombie, Pantera, Ministry, Sepultura, and Meshuggah. And of course, Black Sabbath.

What first got you into music?

I heard the opening chords to Mötley Crüe’s Kickstart my Heart in 1992 and saw Nikki Sixx covered in tattoos shortly after that. I was sold. Got my first bass guitar in 1993 and been doing this ever since!

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

That is a difficult question to answer – and every band member will say something different! For me, thinking about Chaos Doctrine, probably Rob Zombie – but he must have his White Zombie hat on! Absolute heroes also include Geezer Butler and Kerry King – can you imagine?

Side note – Chaos Doctrine has done two international collaborations recently. One will be revealed at the end of October. The second is with an international metal icon – and will be hitting the airwaves early in 2021!

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

Alec was lucky enough to play Wacken before – and given that it is the Mecca of metal festivals, I would have to say that one! Many other huge ones though!

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

Haha! I am unlucky enough to have never received a weird gift. Can someone send me something please?

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

Thank you for the continued support and stay tuned for a whole new level coming on our second album and beyond!

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

Oh man, another super hard one. My first prize as a vocalist and former bass player would be the absolute legend Lemmy. Second place – one of the greatest voices in metal ever, Ronnie James Dio. And I have to mention Randy Rhoads and Dimebag Darrell!

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

What I enjoy most are firstly the interactions with fans, and secondly the creative vibes we have as a band when we create something brand new. When that new riff lands and the drums and bass fill in, and my vocals just work with it, that is what keeps me going in between shows!

The least is probably the slog of carrying gear and the politics of negotiating slots and pay!

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

The music industry at a macro level is one that has changed dramatically. We have gone from musicians getting utterly exploited by the industry in the days of gold and platinum records to one where bands have to earn their money performing and giving their music away for free. Perhaps the best thing one could wish for is for bands to get fairly compensated for their talent and music?

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Just one? How would I choose just one? Let’s go with SLAYER’s “Seasons in the Abyss”!

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

Vinyl if you have time to sit down and listen. Downloads if you are on the move!

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

My best gig was not with Chaos Doctrine, but with my first band Bedlam. It was back in the late 90’s, we had more than a 1000 people in front of the stage, and everything went superbly! With Chaos Doctrine my favourite show was probably one we played in Bloemfontein in 2018.

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

My day job? Hahahahaha.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Assuming you mean people that are alive. So, Tom Araya, Zakk Wylde, and Geezer Butler. And my band mates so they can meet these guys too (one of them will have to sneak in hahahahaha)!

What’s next for the band?

Our first priority is finishing our second album and releasing it early next year. The tracks on there were written by the previous configuration of Chaos Doctrine and we are really proud of the songs. Alec is busy finishing the production and it is sounding amazing! Following that, we will probably release a “Chaos Chronicles Volume II” EP late in 2021, with alternative mixes of some of the tracks on the new album. And in between that – playing shows, getting our music out there, creating new music, and doing some more collaborations!

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

We are all over the web, but you can find our music on YouTube, Spotify, or Apple Music.
www.facebook.com/ChaosDoctrine
www.instagram.com/chaosdoctrine/
www.twitter.com/chaosdoctrine
www.youtube.com/channel/UCY8QGZKgiZhljhTf6pcxkAQ
www.chaosdoctrine.bandcamp.com/
www.soundcloud.com/chaos-doctrine

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Haha! I only know Jaffa cakes because my girlfriend is British. I would say they are cakes!

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

Thank you for talking to us! Yes – keep your eyes on our social media pages with the first surprise release coming at the end of October, and the second shortly after. As I mentioned earlier, the next single from our album will also feature a huge name in international metal and is going to kick your head right in. The Chaos Doctrine steam train is rolling!

Represented by David Devo Oosthuizen
Devographic Music Media, PR, Events & Artist Management Agency – South Africa
devo@devographic.com

Photo David Devo Oosthuizen, Devographic

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.