After 11 years, the Hardcore/Death Metal powerhouse, Despised Icon, rolled through Las Vegas last night and brought with them an astoundingly monstrous package which collectively destroyed the stage at Backstage Bar and Billiards. Among this legion were the very handsome and very British Slam Kings, Ingested, whom, as always, delivered an absolutely crushing set.
After their kick-ass onslaught of slams and hyperblasts, I got to sit down with vocalist Jay Evans and drummer Lyn Jeffs to talk for a few moments about their ever-evolving sound, seemingly endless work ethic, and what the future holds for them in their quest for nonstop brutality.
Q: So you guys have been going through an immense amount of evolution in the development of your sound. Do you feel you’re reaching your peak or is there even more ahead?
A: Jay: I don’t think we’ve hit our peak yet. I think we’re just hitting our stride and definitely not our peak. We’ve got plenty, plenty more so we’re just gonna keep climbing and climbing this mountain.
Lyn: I feel with the amount of touring that we’re doing at the moment its helping our sound evolve as well because we know what we like to play live and its kind of.. We’re becoming more of a live band where before we were just doing the odd tour here and there like one tour a year with a few fests here and there so.. I feel like our sound is evolving with how we play live .
Q: And what kind of influences have you guys been taking in recently?
A: Jay: A little bit of everything really. Like, as individuals we have a vast taste in music. Like I’d say that’s definitely it y’know what I mean?
Lyn: I find it really hard to say who influences it anymore to be honest.
Jay: Yeah I was gonna say, it sounds arrogant as fuck but.. Yeah we’re kind of influenced by what we write. Like stuff that we’ve written before, how we can expand on that, what works well, what doesn’t. And for us every album is like a learning curve as well y’know because we like to make sure that whatever we’ve just released , whatever we’re about to release is going to top it. That’s the goal every single time is to put out a better album, every time. Like every tour we do we want to do better live, we want to put on a better show, a better performance so.. I think we’re doing alright.
Q: A question that I’m sure a lot of musicians would love to know: How do you guys keep a consistent tour schedule while maintaining life at home?
A: Lyn: Well we made a decision last year to put this at the forefront of our lives basically. It was a.. I was gonna say a difficult decision but it wasn’t really because we were fucking fed up with it to be honest. We were fed up working shit jobs that we didn’t want to.. Well to be fair we didn’t have shit jobs. Some of us had decent jobs but we gave all that up to live in a fucking van six months out of the year. (laughs) But no I mean.. There’s more to life than just earning money and just living to exist.
Jay: And the thing is as well like.. I’m speaking for myself here but I imagine its the same for everybody else in Ingested but being in a metal band is all I’ve ever wanted to do ever since I started listening to Slipknot and Fear Factory when I was about 12. Like that’s all I’ve ever wanted to do and we got to a point last year where we were like “fuck it lets just.. Two feet in lets do this!”
Lyn: We all turned 30 and we thought: “if we don’t do it now there might be opportunities missed so.. Fuck it lets just dive in and see where it takes us and.. We’re doing alright so far. (chuckles)
Q: Kind of a more humorous question: Obviously the term “slam police” and “fake slam” has been tossed around social media from time to time. What’d you guys think when you started hearing that?
A: Jay: Ah, well the slam kings don’t give a shit about the slam police or any of these people who think they know what slam is so I don’t give a shit. (laughs) I couldn’t care fucking less for any of that shit, I’m above that shit. (laughs) No but like its funny and shit y’know what I mean, like it is funny but I couldn’t give a fuck what people label us as whether we are slam or we’re not slam I don’t care. Like.. We slam hard, we might not be a “slam band.” I wouldn’t want to be a “slam band” to be honest because I think it’s fucking boring. It’s the same riff over and over again with toilet bowl vocals for three minutes; I’m not bothered. I like interesting music so.. We do slam, we have slam parts and when they come, fuck mate, they come like a fucking sledgehammer.
Lyn: I guarantee we’re more knowledgeable about slam death metal and its origins than anybody.
Jay: (laughs) We grew up with that shit.
Lyn: When we were fourteen and fifteen we listened to all the bands, we were there mate, we fucking remember it.
Jay: That’s our bread and butter mate.
Q: Last question: What was your guys’ least favorite experience in the last couple years on tour?
A: Lyn: Oh fucking hell. (Laughs)
Jay: Probably my least favorite experience, I remember when we played in Toronto on.. Was it Summer Slaughter? I remember I had eaten some fucking seafood platter in the day.
Lyn: That was devastation.
Jay: Right that was devastation. Anyways. Just before we played in Toronto I had this seafood platter at the dodgiest fucking place. It was a stupid idea and I had severe food poisoning and I missed the show. I couldn’t see. I was blind. I kept passing out on the toilet downstairs. I was shitting everywhere. I was throwing up everywhere. I remember I regained consciousness in this toilet cubicle and I could hear you lot (referring to the band) playing. Our guitarist had to do vocals because I was literally so ill. And I heard that and then I passed out again. And then Shaun tried to come and get me out of the toilet and I threw up all over him as well and then eventually I managed to crawl up the stairs and find someone’s dressing room. I don’t know who the fuck it was, right? And then just curled up on a couch and then passed out and then the next thing I know, someone had called the fucking ambulance and they come up and give me the once-over and check me out and shit. That was the worst man. (laughs)
When asked if the band had anything else to say, their response was one of a familiar yet heartwarming nature: true appreciation for the constant support and continuation of support for them and all the metal bands grinding for success in the metal scene today. Whether it be coming to shows, buying merch, or even simply giving them a like or share on social media.
Ingested, to me, are some of the most humble, down-to-earth guys in the scene. Based on their exceptionally positive and humble attitude and the motivation to never stop grinding. I have confidence that it will be many years before we see these gentlemen come to a halt in their never-ending journey to be the best Death Metal band in the genre.