EMQ’s with MELTING EYES
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with The Hague, Netherlands based Old School Death Metal band, Melting Eyes. Huge thanks to Ben Ubert & Marco van der Meer, 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?
Ben Ubert: I play the rhythm guitar and the some of the little melancholic parts.
Marco vd Meer: Drums.
We‘ve known each other for more than 25 years. We‘ve lost track for several years and when we met again in Amsterdam at a Gruesome gig, the idea was born to start up an ODSM band. In February 2017 we started practising and meanwhile the bass player joined us. All three of us already played in other bands in the past. Me, in War Master (NL). Marco in Compos Mentis (NL) and Angelo, the bass player has a long history of bands; Winterfell, GAOS and many more. After ¾ years of rehearsing and writing songs Pier Segaar (guitar in The Impaler, ex Constant Paranoia) joined the band on vocals. After a while he brought his guitar with him and started playing guitar as well. We started performing live with bands like Gruesome, Nervochaos, Graceless, Rages Of Sin, Acrid, mainly in the western part of the Netherlands. The debut EP was recorded in the Covid period in November at Studio Moerwijk and was released Aug 1st 2021.
How did you come up with your band name?
Ben: it refers to my illness, I suffer from Cluster Headaches. In bad periods it’s like one of my eyeballs is melting out of my head. Visualising this gives a gory, painful picture, which of course is suitable for an old school death metal band.
What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
We originate from the western part of the Netherlands and there’s a pretty big metal scene, with Musicon (The Hague), Baroeg (Rotterdam), Nobel (Leiden) programming (inter)national bands. Apart from that the Dutch metal scene is very alive with a lot of good bands (Asphyx, Graceless, Pestilence etc. etc.).
What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)
Our debut EP: “My Final Resting Place”.
‘My Final Resting Place’ (Audio)
Who have been your greatest influences?
Ben: Death (US) (Chuck Schuldiner R.I.P.) and Asphyx, later on also Gruesome (Matt Harvey).
Marco: Nicko McBrain, Alex Marquez, Gene Hoglan, Bolt Thrower, Malevolent Creation, Disincarnate, Cannibal Corpse, Obituary etc.
What first got you into music?
Ben: I think it was hearing Deep Purple’s ‘Smoke on the Water’, after that the new wave of British Heavy Metal, but certainly also the beginning years of Death Metal (87-96).
Marco: When I was 9/10 years old I started listening to AC/DC, Motorhead and Black Sabbath. They all got me where I am now.
When it comes to playing, I’m very inspired by Nicko McBrain, still love his drums on the early Maiden albums.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
Ben: We already did, Matt Harvey of Gruesome helped me out writing the first song ‘Rise From Below’ during guitar lessons and also taught me an important lesson in attitude, which gave me more confidence: “I just play what I like to hear, it doesn’t get any deeper than that”. By chance we also did a gig with them here in Holland.
Marco: My good friend Alex Marquez.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Ben: 70,000 Tons of Metal, great atmosphere and weather, Metal on a cruise ship!
Marco: Actually, same as Ben 70,000 Tons of Metal. Maryland Deathfest would be awesome too.
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Ben: Being stopped on the street to take a photo with me and my orange camper which has the name Melting Eyes on the back.
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Ben: We are very pleased and humbled with all your support and all the nice reactions to our debut EP. You’re all part of Melting Eyes.
Marco: Thanks for all the support and stay death metal.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
Ben: Definitely Chuck Schuldiner, he died way too early.
Marco: Brett Hoffmann, cannot be matched by anyone. His voice was truly unique and he’s still missed.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
Ben: I love the friendship in the band and with the fans. I don’t hate anything, but I am sorry I sometimes cannot spend more time working for the band. We still work full time on a normal job.
Marco: We are good friends and that makes playing a lot of fun. I always look forward to Thursday evenings to rehearse again. And certainly, also all the messages from fans and reviews that we get after the release of the EP. Ben does indeed do a lot of work for the band lately with distribution and contacts, hats off if you do that with a full time job. I hate nothing when it comes to the band.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Ben: No opinion yet
Marco: Deleting Dutch-language music.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Ben: “Leprosy” by Death
Marco: I have so many but there is always one that is often in my CD player and that is “IV Crusade” by Bolt Thrower.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
Ben: All of them, Vinyl looks great, cassettes make me feel nostalgic. They make me feel like going back to the tape trade era. CD’s are still handy and Downloads and Digital make you go around the world faster.
Marco: CD’s and downloads (depends on the bitrate), got no cassette or record player anymore.
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
Ben: Musicon, together with Gruesome.
Marco: Yes, totally agree, Gruesome.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
Ben: Driving on my motorcycle.
Marco: Looking for a drum kit and starting to become a musician.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Ben: my family and friends.
Marco: I don’t do dinner parties, when I throw a party there are only drinks and snacks and I prefer to do that with family and friends.
What’s next for the band?
Ben: To start working on a new album and get more gigs/festivals in 2022
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?
Ben: no f….. clue haha.
Marco: Fucking tasty, I know those things heh.
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Ben : To all who are supporting us, thank you very much!
Marco: Thanks for this interview. And for the fans: thanks for the support.
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