I recently had the opportunity to chat with the tech death underdogs about a couple things…..including my two favorite things, pizza and tacos. They also are releasing one of the best albums of 2018 next week as well…..that’s pretty important, as well.
TMR: What motivated you to start The Artisan Era? It’s such a fantastic label, by the way…..quite possibly the best one right now, in my opinion.
Malcolm: Basically, the idea was to have a way to release our own music without dealing with anyone else, that way we could
Mike: Thanks! We started it as a name to release our own music under. Once we learned a thing or two, we decided to make it legit and start taking on some outside bands. It’s still pretty small but we love doing it and helping bands we think are sick! We are constantly on the lookout for new bands to add to the roster. I actually just sent out 5 contracts the other day!
TMR: How did the writing process for Revenant differ from The End Of An Era or The Path Of Apotheosis?
Malcolm: Well, with EOAE we where in a studio and tracked and mixed everything within 11 days. It came out super raw and we didn’t want to repeat that process again, so with Path and Revenant, we decided to record on our own terms and in our own home studios in order to get the results we where looking for. It’s nice to have as much time as you need when working on an album and that luxury provides us with the mental tools to write and compose along the way as opposed to everything being set in stone once we are done with tracking. Also, Mike mixed Path and Revenant, which is another pro to being able to do things on our own.
TMR: Malcolm: Any update on anything new for A Loathing Requiem?
Malcolm: Right now I have some material setting around and there will be a third album. But for time being my main focus is INFERI.
TMR: How has your newest member your drummer Spencer working out for the band? He has some big shoes to fill in regards to Blackburn who was one heck of a drummer I may add.
Mike: He is doing a fantastic job! Malcolm and I started scoping out local drummers to take Jack’s place over 2 years ago. Jack had moved out of state and we wanted to revive Inferi as a live band. It took a while to find the right guy, but we totally found him. By that time, we had most of Revenant written and Jack wanted to play on one last record with us, so we worked it out for Spencer to join immediately after we recorded the album. We’ve known Spencer for a couple years as a local dude in the Nashville music scene and he has become a great friend and touring companion too!
Malcolm: Working with Spencer has been great and he has been a great fit to our sound and our future progression as a band. Plus, he lives in our area, which is what we needed to move forward as a band.
TMR: How did you guys land Trevor as a guest vocalist? He just isn’t another artist, he’s a huge advocate for underground bands and extreme music in general…..you guys must have been chomping at the bit!
Malcolm: All of the Black Dahlia guys are some of the most chill guys you could ask for. I just reached out to him, because I thought it would be cool to have a different vocalist for that particular part on the album. He was happy to do so and the rest is history, same with James Malone. He played a gnarly solo on the album and I can’t wait for people to hear it.
TMR: What is everyone’s favorite song from “Revenant”? Congratulations on an amazing album…..it’s definitely a 2018 favorite for me with plenty of other interesting albums to follow yours as well.
Malcolm: Malevolent Sanction sticks out the most to me. It’s the most diverse and expansive piece on the album in my opinion.
Mike: That is almost impossible to answer, but for right now I might say “Malevolent Sanction” just because it is the most off-the-wall and proggy song Inferi has ever put out.
Joel: Thy Menacing Gaze
Sam: A Beckoning Thrall
Spencer: Through the Depths
TMR: One thing I’ve loved about your band since I knew who you were is your artwork…..what was your thought process behind Revenant’s artwork, theme and lyrics?
Malcolm: The Artwork is based on the exact lyrics for ‘Behold the Bearer of Light.’ The album is based on themes from Dante’s Inferno and this is Lucifer frozen in the Lake of Cocytus. Helge C. Balzer did a fantastic job of capturing the ideas I had for the piece.
TMR: What do you guys think of Aepoch and Unflesh? I just recently discovered who these bands were…..they blow my mind! A tour with those two would blow up the universe! (HINT, HINT 😉 )
Malcolm: Both are rad and I hear a lot of potential in both bands. Brett (Aepoch) is a really stand up dude as well. You never know what the future may hold.
TMR: What new releases any you guys are looking forward to this year? And on the opposite spectrum…..what were your favorite albums from 2017?
Malcolm: I’m not exactly sure what is on the horizon this year, but I’ve got my eyes on Beyond Creation’s new release. For my 2017 pick, I’d have to go with Dark Matter Secret’s Perfect World Creation.
Mike: Amiensus and Equipoise
Joel: Warforged and Equipoise
Sam: Spite, Virulent Depravity, and Necrophagist
Spencer: At the Gates, Oubliette, Gruesome, Amiensus, and Equipoise
TMR: Pizza or Tacos? Everyone has to answer.
Malcolm: I want Pizza! P.I.Z.Z.A.
Mike: Close call, but good tacos are near and dear to my heart
Joel: Tacos, because I’m not a god damn savage
Sam: Pizza folded like a taco
Spencer: I’d say tacos because I ate too much damn pizza on tour
TMR: What was it like jamming with the modern day legend Grindmother? How freaking cool was that shit? I loved her album! Any fun memories from that tour with her band and Alterbeast?
Mike: It was an interesting act to follow, to say the least! It was awesome to see her up there doing something she has come to love and having a blast every night. They were all sweethearts too.
Spencer: It was a blast! Definitely never thought my first tour would be with a 68 year old woman lol, but it was a lot of fun and all the bands killed it every night. One of my favorite memories was from the Sacramento show, the crowd was awesome, everybody played their best set of the whole tour that night, and it was fun getting to hang and drink with all the dudes one last time before starting the trip back to Nashville.
Malcolm: The tour was great and we had a really good time. At this point, it all feels like a blur to me now.
TMR: What are everyone’s favorite set of lyrics from Revenant?
Malcolm: “Thunder it seems, ripples atop the ice as Lucifer speaks”
Joel: “In exchange for all your mercy, I will grant you amnesty, but the lies between his teeth hold a stench of fantasy.”
Sam: “Striving to be human once more, taste of the flesh and assimilate their form.”
Spencer: “Engulfed by a maelstrom of lustful dead, he snatched out the tongue from the judge’s head, putting his limp serpent body to use, he strangled Minos with his tail like a noose.”
TMR: Go ahead and provide links for any other projects you guys have, or any other aspirations that may not involve music. Thanks for putting together such a great album for everyone, Revenant will blow minds guaranteed. Thanks for also taking the time to answer my questions as well!
Mike: Oubliette (melodic black/death metal) facebook.com/oubliettemetal
Spencer: Phobos (instrumental progressive rock)