To date, we have conducted 1040 interviews. If your band is available for an interview, feel free to contact us and we'll see what we can do. Here are our latest:
Los Angeles, California's hardcore metal act I.R.A.T.E. has seen more than its fair share of adversity this year, including a name ownership battle with NYC counterparts who seemed to want to see this band crash and burn under outrageous 'character assassination' attempts and even literal 'death threats', yet still managing to even hold its own against the other enemy that needs to be worried about: a stiff wall of competition coming from countless hordes of other upcoming rock acts making their rounds on the most famous music scene of them all, Hollywood's Sunset Strip. Sure, this band has been touring the lights out across this great nation of ours with The Project Independent Tour and doing a great job at making friends and fans with their music from one city to the next, but I think what is most compelling about I.R.A.T.E. is their abiity to take all the good and bad in stride and never forget what they intended to be in the first place, a powerful and important rock n roll band. I got a chance inbetween the band's recent touring break to conduct a fresh round of Q&A with their always entertaining frontman, Erik Ulrich.
Los Angeles, California's CROWNED BY FIRE is a newly formed heavy metal band that has one of the scene's more talented guitar players leading them into battle versus the over-populated and mostly over-hyped hard rock acts that they will be competing against on their way to the top. I don't think they're going to have any problems gaining label attention quicker than most due to the fact they have that 'Us Versus Them' vibe going on that Guns N Roses gave off when they first hit the Sunset Strip, yet clearly back it up with serious musical prowess as the Gunners always did. What I like most about the early demo work from this band is that it has real soul to it, that is sorely lacking in any rock music that's being put out today, and I think that's what's going to really help them in the long run. I had a chance to get some questions in with their man on the six strings, Justin 'Slush' Manning.
Birmingham, Alabama's VICTIM OF THOUGHT truly is one of those rare underground finds for me this year that I just sit back with a big ole grin on my face. These guys are what heavy metal is all about. Period. They almost seem like they've been locked up in a room somewhere since the end of the 90's when bands like Pantera and Alice In Chains, who they draw so much inspiration from, were taking the genre to new heights. These guys are clearly untouched by the corporate manufactured metal -sound and influence that is seriously tarnishing the great name of metal. It's bands like Victim Of Thought who are going to be at the forefront when all the faux metalers finally call it a day. I am really excited to be working with them and even more thrilled to have a chance to interview one of the underground's most talented singers, Scott White.
Los Angeles, California's PROJECT STEIGER is headed up by Ken Steiger, a celebrated guitar instructor at Musicians Institute who is now busy promoting his sensational new self-released CD entitled "Defiance". He has surrounded himself with the best of the best from the progressive heavy music scene, names that true disciples of the genre will clearly recognize at first glance. I am most taken aback by the man's spirit and zest for the life of metal music, and that is why I wanted to make this interview happen so badly. I believe many of you who are just starting out on learning guitar or maybe are picking it back up again, can learn a whole lot from Ken Steiger. And I don't speak merely about his ability to teach chops. I speak of the man's character, along with his unbridled passion and relentless pursuit to achieve great things at what he loves doing most.
Los Angeles, California's LEVEL-ZERO is one of those unique metal bands in the underground that truly thrives off being in the underground, where political moves at big corporate labels can't mess with them. From my vantage point, they are clearly one of the most respected and talked about acts in the country, even up against bands that have record deals and big money to back them. That is a true testimony to the hard work that the band and its loyal fans put in on a continual basis to keep these guys rocking hard.
I got some Q&A in with their drummer, Jesse Bilson. And it's one that I'm sure you'll enjoy.
One of my favorite underground discoveries this year is Tampa, Florida's SHIMERA. A real savvy death metal unit that doesn't allow it's songwriting to get bogged down with the same antics as before. They are playing shows all throughout their local scene right up to year's end, and have been gaining a lot of attention with metal fans online at their MySpace music profile. It seems I am not the only one who appreciates the musical brutality they have to offer. I got some Q&A in with their man on lead/rhythm guitar & vocals, James Seaton.
Having formed originally in 2003, like any hard working band, LIFE IN SHADOW, has gone through its share of changes. But they have managed to keep all their wheels on the tracks still in their highly competetive local music scene of Illinois, and have come up with a very impressive demo that has started to stir quite the commotion among the truest of metalers. They have a slew of upcoming shows, including appearing on the Hell Fest bill in Sheffield, Illinois on October 28th with many other great underground acts. I am pleased to have gotten in some time with their bass player, Mark Jenkins, who was cool enough to answer some questions I had for him.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania's DAWN OF CORRECTION have been simply tearing it up this year on their local club scene, mainly on the stage of a well known venue like The Trocadero. This group is clearly one of those throwback-type metal bands that pays homage to the bands from the past that inspired the music they now make, namely bands such as, Savatage, Mercyful Fate, Overkill, Venom and Armored Saint. They have recently recruited a second guitar player, Giulio Kitao, who kindly enough took some time out with me to conduct this interview.
Tampa, Florida death metal act SHIMERA throw down a lean, mean and technically supreme form of heavy music. Unlike most current bands of this genre, Shimera isn't at all plagued with the over-used blast beat and ridiculously distorted guitar syndrome. They know how to find the groove. And to me, that's what Rock n Roll is about in the first damn place. The band, currently auditioning bass players for their lineup, is made up of James Seaton on lead/rhythm guitar & vocals, Brian Mourer on lead and rhythm guitar and Susanne Gentry on drums.
Los Angeles based melodic hardcore specialists, LEVEL-ZERO, only just formed back in 2000 but have made tremendous strides in the underground metal scene with their heavy handed yet perfectly toned, hook-laden song attack that is Deftones meets Pantera. This is a band that is beloved in city after city that its party bus has crashed through and is clearly one of those unsigned act's 'to watch'. I tracked down the man behind the guitar, Keith Covert.
Omaha, Nebraska's NARCOTIC SELF is a heavy metal band with serious intentions. They are here to plant the 'true metal' flag right back into the soil that it's been robbed from thanks mainly in part to all the corporate tactics being used to push EMO pop rock acts as the real deal. The band has been touring heavy on their local scene and recently self-released the full-length effort 'Blood and Poison, which hits you square in the chest just like Pantera did back in the day. I am real proud to have gotten some Q&A in with their singer, Jesse Dean.
New York, City, New York's very own rough and tumble heavy metal band DRY KILL LOGIC have left a serious impression with the toughest critics in the underground since their debut in 2000. They have toured the world and back, sharing stages with great names like FEAR FACTORY and DEVILDRIVER and will soon venture out on their very first American headlining stint coming up after some European dates. With their third studio album "Of Vengeance And Violence" (Repossession Records) just making its official release today, I am very excited and beyond honored to have conducted this interview with the band's talented lead vocalist, Cliff Rigano.
I am so thrilled and honored to be interviewing my next subject, Rob Trevino, lead guitarist of Houston, Texas' ETERNITY BLACK. A lot of you know him from his days with the legendary HELSTAR, but I have to get on the bullhorn here and tell you metalers that this dude is not playing around, even this late in the game of his highly respected musical career. When most others his age, Dave Mustaine notably, clearly are slowing down and not flashing much of the past great virtuoso chops in newer material any longer, it's a great thing to see Rob truly sticking to his guns, no matter what anyone thinks. And I'm here to say that this is a heavy metal band that could go head to head right now with just about anyone. They are that impressive musically, dropping sonic atomic bombs to wipe thousands around them off the map... and into ETERNITY BLACK.
Formed in 2005, Birmingham, Alabama's VICTIM OF THOUGHT is as solid of a metal act coming out of the underground scene as you can get. They combine elements of razor-sharp Pantera riff domination with an Anselmo-esque howl cry vocal delivery breaking off at a level just about any extreme music fan is going to appreciate. Citing main influences such as Judas Priest, Stone Temple Pilots, Life of Agony, Corrosion of Conformity, Victim Of Thought have really started to make people take notice of them on their local club scene and judging from their increasing popularity on MySpace, I predict this is going to be a band that goes very far in the immediate years to come. I wanted to learn more about them, so I recently got some Q&A done with Eddie on lead guitar.
The great white metal hope out of the safe and friendly mid-west confines of Evansville, Indiana, better known to their diehard underground fan base as DELIVER US FROM EVIL, have not relented one nano-second in their all-out pursuit for heavy metal glory. They have been simply destroying each stage, even going as far to make sure that each new show they perform is a bit more destructive than the last. The impressive metal unit seems to run on mutant-type powers, in the mind's eye of this music critic. I have yet to see one other unsigned metal act, throughout the entire world this year, that can bring such a radical technical explosion and completely original approach to their songwriting. I recently was able to get some questions in with their bassist, Jeff Thomas.
Detroit, Michigan may be well known for churning out new automobiles off the assembly line but there is one mean steel machine running around called SOLDIERS OF SCRAPE that is making more noise out of the underground music scene than a Ford Pinto that should've been junked twenty years ago. Soldiers Of Scrape just took top honors for 2006's Monster Picks contest, a true testimony to just how popular this band is. They are to be featured in the upcoming Decibel magazine. This is a metal band that is for the people and of the people, like one of its main inspirations, Pantera. They are going to be turning the touring knob up to eleven here in September and October, so watchout for them throughout Michigan and Illinois. I took some time to get my Q&A on with their always bleary eyed bassist, Wayne.
On August 7th 2006, I saw the New Jersey progressive death metal band Divinity Destroyed at The Continental, a bar in New York City. Recently losing their keyboardist, Divinity Destroyed are still going out and playing shows. Nonetheless, I went with my friend Steven to see Divinity Destroyed put on a short and sweet set of about 20 minutes. There was a crowd of about 30 people, most of which have never heard them before, but were certainly enjoying the music. Regardless of small technical difficulties they had with their guitars early on, they put on a killer show with a lot of energy and headbanging and all out insanity. After their performance, I conducted the interview outside a bookstore around the corner of the venue.
The band is an eccentric bunch of individuals that I enjoy hanging out with after their performances. I constructed questions for this interview that would bring out this part of their natural personality that isn’t heard in their music, but can be seen on their website and Myspace page. The questions I asked also spurred a lot of spontaneous conversations, which made the interview fun. Unfortunately some of the silly irrelevant side conversation was hard to hear from the audio recording and some of the funny statements made were hard to hear because there were multiple people talking at once. Despite the complication with transcribing, the interview was very amusing.
Chicago, Illinois is the home to one of the hottest underground radio shows on the net called WYLDE RADIO on the Cygnus Internet station. The host is outspoken and truer to the heavy metal scene than most. His name is Tom Wylde and I wanted to give all of you a chance to learn more about the work that he does, so I tracked him down and got this interview done.
Los Angeles, California's FALL TO GRACE has just received word that they are moving into the semi final stage of the National Bodog Battle Of The Bands competition and are to perform the next round of the contest on September 12th at The Roxy club. They are currently at work on their debut LP and still remain unsigned, but it looks very promising for the hard rockin bunch. They have great stage performance and blend the key elements of metal with a literal 'throwback' Rock-style so well that I just don't see them not making it to the top here very soon. I took some time to get more info on the group with their bass player, Christophe.
Former HELSTAR guitarists, Robert Trevino and Larry Barragan, have formed a new metal beast entitled ETERNITY BLACK out of the very proud and legendary underground metal scene of Houston, Texas. These two clearly made an impact with their former band and are now sitting on top of a literal powder keg with the new one. I even venture out to say that they are at the helm of one of the baddest, meanest-sounding unsigned acts in the world. They will not bow down to the corpororate metal way-of-thinking as they move forward, ushering in the truest form of heavy music one can handle. I am really impressed by not only the guitars and percussion going on, but they have got one incredible vocalist in Ryan McKnight, who I shared some Q&A with recently. Getcha pull!
Bolingbrook, Illinois has a serious death metal act on its hands with LIFE IN SHADOW. This is a band that refuses to just go all out with the blast beat and takes extra careful consideration on their songwriting. They have been making some solid noise on their local club scene and seem to be gaining a pretty strong momentum right now. They have hands down one of the most talented young metal drummers out of the underground in young Josh Abbott, and so I am real happy to have a chance to interview this hard-hitter.
There really aren't any underground metal bands on the scene today made up mostly of twenty-one year olds that are making any kind of serious impression today. Cape Coral, Florida's EKOTREN is an exception. Scratch that, a major exception. With a recent successful performance on Van's Warped Tour 2006 and an increasing following picking up steam in the local clubs of Florida, Ekotren seems to really be holding their own against the crowds of band competition. They have also recently self-released their debut EP 'The Tables Have Turned', which this rock journalist gave an overwhelming 'thumbs up' in review. It's really turned into quite a year for this bunch. With as crazy as things have been going for them, I am pleased to have gotten some questions in with their talented man on the keys, Steve Chin.
Sounds of the Underground Tour came through Vancouver on August 10th and on the bill was Vancouver's very own 3 Inches of Blood. I took the opportunity to chat with Cam Pipes, the man behind the Rob Halford-esque vocals. Here's how it went down:
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania's DAWN OF CORRECTION have been throwing down the metal law all throughout their hometown area of Philadelphia and don't seem to be showing any signs of slowing up. A total throwback metal sound is what they are all about, fusing the best elements of Black Sabbath, Pantera, Slayer, Superjoint Ritual, Old-school Metallica, Savatage and Mercyful Fate. They have the 2006 Metal Fest coming up next put on by Praying Mantis Entertainment that features other great underground acts such as SWIFTKILL and DEAD UNTIL DARK which is set to go off on August 26th. I am happy to finally get the chance to interview D.O.C.'s drummer, Rich Tornetta.
Los Angeles, California's progressive metal outfit 33DEGREE has truly withstood the harshest tests that can be thrown at a band, including the stroke of their skin basher. They are a rock act that seems to have blurred the line between heavy music and spirituality, in my mind, which is what attracted me to them in the first place. The band is comprised of Liz on vocals, Jesus on bass, Blair on guitar and Mack on the sticks. They combine elements of TOOL and LACUNA COIL effectively to arrive at their edgy modern rock sound, yet still somehow they manage to maintain a musical distinction that is very much their own. And that says a lot when you look at all the other bands stuck in blast beast syndrome. They have just finished some recent touring with POWERMAN 5000 and are back in Los Angeles now to do a couple dates on the Sunset Strip soon. It only took me about four months or so to finally get Mack on drums to sit down for this much anticipated Q&A. I thank him and the rest of the group for being one of underground's truly important rock bands.