Just over two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to chat with a very impressive drummer whom has worked with quite a few bands that I like. We chatted about the tour that they were on, his favourite song of the most recent album, his unique drum setup and his advice to new bands.
Thanks to Sarah at Nuclear Blast for organising and Oli for his time.
You’re currently on tour with SepticFlesh and Aborted, how’s the tour been going?
It’s been going really good for us and we’ve had a lot of sold out shows. It’s kind of similar to the tour we did a few years ago with Fleshgod Apocalypse and Krisiun but the crowds have been crazier this time round. I don’t recall people being that crazy, particularly in France and Belgium. There have been points where I’ve had to stop playing because of so many stage divers! The show in Paris was absolutely insane. Our bassist dropped his bass and just did some crowd surfing instead of playing. I wish I could have done the same!
The most recent album, Of Ghost and Gods came out last year. What’s the response like when you play the new songs in the set?
It’s always a challenge to put the new material out, as we are not sure if people will like it but it’s been really well received this time. You know these days it’s not about record sales, it’s about whether people know the tracks and it’s been really cool that people know all the tracks and lyrics. So yeah, it’s been really well received by the audiences.
If I remember as well, you did a video for every song on the album.
Yeah, that was kind of a crazy idea but we managed to pull it off. The guy who did all the editing and filming was crazier than us! I don’t think he knew how much work would be involved until he accepted and we got the whip on him! Sine we are band with a bit of content in the lyrics, we could go different ways in the videos. Like some of the videos are more lyric video based and other have more conceptual things behind them. But obviously, it was a hell of a lot of work as we had to shoot in so many different locations. It was good fun doing it though.
What would you say is your favourite video?
I personally really like “World is a Dying Insect”. That one came out really well and I really like the analogy. Plus it’s my favourite track on the album.
I remember reading somewhere that you use a unique drum setup. Would you mind elaborating on what you use?
Sure! I use Roland triggers and close micing on my Pearl drum kit. It makes sort of like a hybrid drumming system and helps get all the gravity and hyper blasts out sounding really sharp and crisp. At the speeds we play at, it can be very difficult to get the sounds out when just using microphones so it evens out everything and sounds pretty good.
What’s your foot technique on the kick drums?
For the super fast stuff, I use heel-toe as I personally find it really easy to use. I don’t really need to warm up with that technique. I also use swivel technique for some parts so its kind of hybrid like the drum setup.
You’ve done quite a few tours for this new record now, have got any more tours planned or are you going to be taking a break for a bit?
Well, we won’t be doing any long tours like this one but we have another tour planned for this year but I can’t talk about yet as it’s not announced. We play Russia in June and then we play a few festivals in Germany and also Heavy Montreal. After that is done, we’ll be entering writing mode as Maruzio will be having his little baby out for a bit.
Are you going to be focusing more on the newer stuff in tonight’s set or is it going to be a mixture?
We have a lot of albums so it’s impossible to do a song from every album but we play some of the old classics along with the newer stuff. People have been enjoying the set on this tour so that’s always a good sign that we are playing the stuff people want.
Drawing to a close now, my final question for you is what advice would you give to a new upcoming band?
Firstly try to spread the music as much as possible, invest as much as possible in having a good sound because you can’t have a garage album these days and then get on good shows with good bands that are already known. Also, be willing to sacrifice everything to do this. You may need to do small tours in vans as it’s not instant success in this industry. In the pop industry you know, things come and go so quickly but in the metal scene, bands tend to be around for longer and see the fruits of their labor after investing time and money into it.
Thank you very much for your time today!