EMQ’s with VANILLA SUGAR

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EMQ’s with VANILLA SUGAR

Hi Everyone. Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with LA based Alternative artist Vanilla Sugar! Huge thanks to her for taking part!

What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am Vanilla Sugar. I play a combination of Electronic Metal influenced Horror Pop. Instrument wise, I play guitar, synths, and sing. I started the band a few years ago on a midi keyboard and an iMac.

How did you come up with your name?

There are two versions! The PG-13 version is that the name “Vanilla Sugar” sounds sweet and innocent, when the music is actually raw and in your face. The X rated version (the 100% honest version) is this! I wanted to create an alias that was me but not obviously my name. My nickname has always been “JPVanilla”, hence the first part of “Vanilla Sugar”. The second is a play on words for the term “Kitty Sugar”…feel free to google that when you’re not at work. Adding the two together created Vanilla Sugar!

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

I am from the United States of America. The metal scene is thriving. There’s always a lot of support for local metal bands, and diehard fans are always going to touring shows and festivals.

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

I am about to release my debut album, “She” in early 2020. I’ve shot two music videos to go along with the first couple of singles, ‘ThisDarkPlace’ and ‘KeepASecret’.

Who have been your greatest influences?

I love The Prodigy, Grimes, Sleigh Bells, and Mindless Self Indulgence. They have all played a part in developing my sound. I like heavier music too, bands like Korn, Lamb of God, and Mudvayne. I get a lot of vocal influence from those singers.

What first got you into music?

My dad is a musician. He enrolled me in piano lessons when I was four years old – that pretty much started everything.

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

I would absolutely love to collaborate with Billie Eilish. I think we could do some cool things together!

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

I would love to play at Download Festival. I have always loved the line-ups ever since I was a kid, and dreamed to be on one!

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

I don’t think I’ve received any weird gifts from fans, but one of my favourite gifts was a hand sculpted ice cream cone made from iron. It was given to me in Alaska, it was sooo heavy! I love it, and have it on display in my living room.

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

Thank you!!!! From the bottom of my heart! I would not be where I am without fans.

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

I would bring back Keith Flint from The Prodigy. I never got to see them live, and had tickets to their show in May of 2019. Unfortunately Keith passed away before that date. I would have loved to meet him and pick his brain about his music.

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

I love being able to express myself through music. If I am going through something emotionally – be it happy, sad, angry – I can release it through the sound. Playing shows are my favourite thing – I love hearing the music so loud and just getting lost in it. It is freeing. I don’t really hate anything about being a musician. I love it!

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

At this time, I don’t think I really would change anything – everything is a process, and I’m learning from it all.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“The End Of All Things To Come” by Mudvayne. I love listening to that album from start to finish.

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

I honestly prefer downloads! I can listen to the song across multiple products and don’t have to go looking for the CD!

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

My favourite show was Warped Tour in Anchorage Alaska. There were thousands of people there, all of them were so into the music! My merch line was 2 hours long after the set – the longest it’s ever been. It was a pleasure to meet the fans that were there… in all, it was such a great experience!

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

I would probably be focusing solely on photography.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

If it were celebrities! Billie Eilish, Jonathan Davis, Grimes, Chad Gray, Ari Aster.

What is next for you?

I am releasing my debut album early 2020, and will be continuing to tour the US until the release! I do plan to tour internationally in 2020 as well.

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

https://www.facebook.com/vanillasugarmusic/
https://twitter.com/VanillaSugarHTX
https://www.instagram.com/vanillasugarmusic/
https://www.youtube.com/user/VanillaSugarMusic

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

I would say the chocolate makes it a cake!

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

I host a Facebook and Instagram Live AMA every Thursday night at 8pm PST. I love to get to know my fans! Please join me!

 

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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 both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Duel – Valley Of Shadows

Valley Of Shadows Cover

Duel – Valley Of Shadows
Heavy Psych Sounds
Release Date: 17/05/2019
Running Time: 38:00
Review by Alun Jones
8/10

Duel have been on my radar for quite a while. Despite hearing a few tracks via the band’s social media, I’d never sat down, ear-goggles locked in place, to listen to a full album. So, I was pretty stoked to have the opportunity to review their latest album: “Valley Of Shadows”, released recently by Heavy Psych Sounds.

Hailing from Austin, Texas, these four fiends are responsible for an almighty stoner doom racket; full on heavy rifferama with psychedelic and classic metal references. In case that description alone doesn’t grab you like a graveyard ghoul on the way to an unholy shindig, their whole aesthetic is tripped out in the sort of late-night, B-movie gore that’s lurid enough to make your eyes pop.

It’s like Dracula Has Risen from the Grave sound-tracked by a bunch of longhair ne’er-do-wells, and that’s just how I like it.

‘Black Magic Summer’ opens up the proceedings with some appropriate rain-soaked sound effects, before launching into the heavy-as-a-crypt-door attack. There’s a brilliantly melodic middle section too, adding some light to the gloom.

Second track ‘Red Moon Forming’ has a direct, driving pace that’s infectious and purposely concocted to inspire the raising of horns. ‘Drifting Alone’ has a real classic desert rock vibe, with a cool head shaker riff.

‘Strike And Disappear’ comes on like the vampire Western that Tarantino needs to make. A slower, bluesy pace with a dusty feel, it’s the first taste we get of a very different – and effective – approach. It melts into a ferocious, face pummelling section that screams blood and violence.

Songs like ‘Tyrant On The Throne’ have a classic metal, almost (gasp!) Iron Maiden feel to them. Otherwise, the sound explores more of the head-banging, smoke induced groove of bands like Trouble and The Obsessed.

But just like the best stoner metal movers and shakers, there’s always room for some ZZ Top-style boogie, which particularly comes to the fore in the final track, ‘The Bleeding Heart’.

As always, my sound comparisons are only meant as genuine compliments. Duel manage to create an album full of their own spirit and character, and it’s one hell of a fun ride. At turns hypnotic, fist pummelling, and sombre; “Valley of the Shadows” pulls the stake out of the stoner doom corpse and brings it back to bloody life again.

The last time I actually was involved in a duel, it was a case of duelling banjos. I was on a canoeing trip with some buddies out in the Appalachian back country. We ran into some unsavoury redneck types, one of whom challenged me to a banjo showdown. Of course, I threw in some licks that my old mentor Jimi Hendrix had shown me, and the creepy little weirdo had no chance: I was victorious.

Unfortunately, the locals weren’t too happy and we had a bit of a run-in of sorts with ‘em later. It was all fun and games really, and we were on our way home soon enough. But I tell you: just whatever you do, don’t mention piggies to my buddy Bobby!

TRACKLISTING:
01. Black Magic Summer
02. Red Moon Forming
03. Drifting Alone
04. Strike And Disappear
05. Broken Mirror
06. Tyrant On The Throne
07. I Feel No Pain
08. The Bleeding Heart

BAND LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/DUELTEXAS/
https://www.instagram.com/dueltexas/
https://duel3.bandcamp.com/

RECORD LABEL LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/HEAVYPSYCHSOUNDS/
https://www.heavypsychsounds.com/
https://heavypsychsoundsrecords.bandcamp.com/

 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Alun 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.