Interview with John Bravo of Act of Destruction
Act of Destruction is a local technical death/thrash band from Chicago Illinois. I had the opportunity to see them play live at the Bottom Lounge with an Israeli metal band known as Orphaned Land, and at the Pearl Ballroom in Moneka Illinois with folk Metal’s Alestorm and Tyr. Lead guitarist John Bravo got it right when he said that no two songs by them sound the same. In this day of age, when there are plenty of bands competing for a record label deal, having the versatility in their songwriting will most certainly make Act of Destruction stand out from the competition. Currently, Act of Destruction is in a time of transition, as they are seeking a new guitarist. Any and all information can be found on their MySpace.
Daniel Becker: What happened with your former guitarist? How has the process of finding a replacement been? What type of guitarist are you looking for in your band?
John Bravo: Well, Ed Ingram has decided to join the Armed Forces, so we knew if he was going to leave to pursue that, we would have to find a replacement. We called up our buddy Keith Pedziewiatr, who Glenn had known for a long time, and he jumped onboard right away. It was great. Recently, though, Keith has expressed to us that being a live touring musician are no longer something he wants to do with his life. Therefore, we are yet again in search of another lead guitarist. We are looking for somebody preferably age 18-21, able to write songs/solos/ideas in our ‘style’, able to play pretty much anything we can come up with, has prior experience and stage performance/presence, has own gear and transport, and a great attitude. The search has not been going as good as we had hoped, so Keith has agreed to stay with us until a replacement is ready to step in.
Becker: I have one of your demos, how many full-length albums have you produced yet? How is the process of getting on a label been coming along? What is the process of finding a label like for someone who is not familiar with the difficulties?
Bravo: I recorded two full-length demos before I got a live band together. Now that we are a full band, we have been working on a new full-length. Recording will begin next weekend. We will be posting updates and videos on our MySpace and facebook accounts for anyone to check out. We are currently negotiating a management contract, after which, along with the completion of the new album, we will begin our label campaign.
Becker: I saw you guys at the Pearl Ballroom in Moneka Illinois with Alestorm. Do you know whatever happened to that place? I heard it got shut down?
Bravo: That place was great. I’m not too sure what has been going on right now though, I know that it is closed. I’ve also heard rumors that they are planning to reopen the venue. I’m not sure if the owners are the same though. I hope it reopens soon. It was my favorite venue outside of Chicago.
Becker: What makes Act of Destruction distinguished from many of the new technical death melodic/thrash bands out there?
Bravo: The main thing that I notice is that we don’t sound like any other band that I’ve ever heard. A lot of bands seem like they’re just trying to sound like somebody else. Another thing is that none of our songs sound alike. With a lot of these bands, there will be songs that have the same feel and style as another song. I don’t like that. It’s like you’re just ripping yourself off.
Becker: Which bands do you want to tour with in the future?
Bravo: I think it would be cool to tour with everybody (laughs), but that would obviously be impossible. As long as there’s good music and everybody is having a good time, I wouldn’t really care with who we tour with.
Becker: What bands are you currently influenced by when recording? What bands do you listen to/admire right now?
Bravo: Right now, The Absence, Judas Priest, Nevermore, Wintersun, King Diamond, Evergrey, Kalmah, Megadeth. Stuff like that.
Becker: Who came up with the band name “Act of Destruction?” Is it still significant today?
Bravo: Well, it was either I or my brother, or a combination of both. The idea was spawned many years ago when we were around like 10 (laughs)- way before we thought it would eventually be the name of the band that we would come to create.
Becker: As a local band of Chicago, what makes Chicago’s metal scene different from a lot of other areas?
Bravo:Well, I’m not really sure how to answer that. Most of what we’ve experienced so far is the same. Not a lot of clubs and bars will dedicate a whole night for Metal. There are places here and there, but no real central location. Metal seems to be coming back, but not enough yet for most clubs to ensure they will profit enough off of it. The scene is definitely growing though. If more clubs and people step up, I think they can give metal the little push that it needs.
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