Due to the huge number of bands playing at Bloodstock this year, and the fact that our two roving reporters will actually want to watch some of them, we’re doing a little round of pre-festival interviews this year. We’re focussing on the bands playing the Jagermeister and Hobgoblin New Blood Stages so they get a chance to convince you to go and watch them. Remember, these guys and gals are the future of our musical world!
Guitarist Andy took the reigns for this interview around publicising their newly-released album (you can get it on iTunes, Amazon and Spotify as well as from their own store on CD, by the way!)…
Simple things first – where are you guys from?
We are from the city of Perth in Scotland.
How did you meet?
Myself, David our drummer and Sheep our bassist started Blackened Ritual as a 3 piece. Sheep and I had been jamming in another band which had just finished and David had also been jamming with another band. Neither were serious or close to the style of music we are truly passionate about so we decided to get together and have a jam. Things pretty much gelled instantly and after our first 2 hour jamming session we had written our first song.
After a year of gigging as an instrumental band, we came to the conclusion that getting a second player would help diversify our sound and develop our stage show. I had known Allan for years as we used to jam covers way before the band had started so he was the perfect guy to bring in. Right away again things flowed really well and our sound started to develop.
Being an instrumental band, we found it hard to really break through, although we did reach the final of the Perth Battle of the Bands 2010. We took a short break and concentrated on finding a vocalist. After auditioning various vocalists we met ex-Anthracite vocalist Tom. We were all pretty much gob smacked at how good he was, as well as being an awesome dude, so Blackened Ritual was finally complete.
How long have you been playing together as a band?
We had our first jam on the 6th of December 2008.
Where does the name of the band come from?
Well…….we had tried out a few different ideas. I was really keen on the name being one word like most of the bands we grew up listening too, but we still couldn’t find something good enough. Franny then phoned me whilst in his van at work and asked what I thought of Blackened Ritual. Right away I was like ‘I like it’.
What are your influences – individually or as a band?
Collectively, I think you can probably guess who influenced us just by listening to our music. However, one of the things that I really like about the band is that we all enjoy the old school bands obviously, but individually, we all enjoy different things out width the genre. Thrash is generally the most associated tag we get, however, I like to think that it doesn’t define us.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
I would describe our music as being hard hitting, energetic and fun. We have been compared to lots of bands, which to me, is a sign that there is diversity within our sound. As a guitar player within the band, my ethos is to imagine how a riff would sound live when I’m writing. Y’know…What makes me want to headbang?
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
I would say our live show is full on from start to finish. We’re here to party not to stand still. As we have been a band for the best part of a decade now we have played extensively all over Scotland although we definitely want to take the party south of the border.
Did you enter M2TM thinking you could win it?
Well we were actually in the process of recording our album at the time, and we were unsure as to whether we should enter as schedules could potentially clash. As it is such a great opportunity for unsigned bands, we thought we’d enter anyway and see what happens. Actually going on to win was an amazing feeling. The support we had from start to finish was unbelievable.
What sort of setlist can we expect?
We have basically covered all elements of the band in our set list. All tracks from our debut album, we’ve picked our favourites and what we consider our best ‘live’ songs.
Which main stage band do you most hope you’re not clashing with so you can see them play?
Haha….we’ve been speaking about this a lot recently, and we are all pretty much praying that we don’t clash with Overkill.
What are you working on at the moment?
Having just released our debut album, we are currently working on getting as many gigs as humanly possible. We’re looking forward to meeting lots of cool people at Bloodstock, as well as the other bands, so hopefully we can all help each other out.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done on tour?
I didn’t actually see this myself, but we just played a four day tour around Scotland after our album launch and a couple of our bro’s in the band Dog Tired got pulled over by the police for having a beer can in the street. Instead of getting lifted they managed to get them to play their album in the car whilst they took photos with their hats on. Absolute legends.
What advice would you give to a young band just starting out today?
My advice to any young musician is never give up, always play what’s true to you and take every opportunity you can get.
If you could be part of any 3-band line-up who else would you have on the bill? One band above you and one below – a chance to plug a smaller, unsigned act!
- Blackened Ritual
- Dog Tired
Now there is a riff sandwich!
Blackened Ritual play the Hobgoblin New Blood Stage on the Friday.