Pre-Bloodstock interview: Skarthia

Skarthia - RetaliteDue 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!

Simple things first – where are you guys from

We’re all from London, apart from Wayne who lives in Colchester and Gigi who travels over from a completely different multi-verse.

How did you meet?

Gigi and Av met through school, they met Sapir at a show they had put on for Charity and eventually Av met Wayne at university.

How long have you been playing together as a band?

In its current state we’ve been together for two and a half years, the band has existed since 2009.

Where does the name of the band come from?

Our original drummer came up with the name, at the time it just sounded cool – it didn’t have a meaning. However, it has now lined up with the theme of our lyrics. “Skar” an injury that never leaves and becomes a part of you, and “ia” the suffix used at the end of the name a place. Hence, “The world of scars” – earth, humanity etc.

But meaning or not, it sounds cool!

What are your influences – individually or as a band?

Everyone has their own influences, that translates into the music with their input.

For example, Wayne being the drummer is influenced by bands like Dream Theatre and Cat Empire, whereas Gigi being the bassist is influenced by Korn and American Head Charge. We’re influenced by more than just music however, day to day events and experiences , people, emotions and reactions translate into the music.

Musically, we all like At The Gates, Gojira, Machine Head, Opeth, Arch Enemy, Mastodon , Lamb of God and Death.

Describe your music. What makes you unique?

We normally describe it as a hybrid of groove metal and melodic death metal because we’re asked for a genre. However, similar to our range of influences, we don’t limit ourselves to one particular genre/sub genre. We like incorporating elements of many styles to create a diverse sound. Bottom line, if it sounds good and makes you want to fist pump and head-bang, it’s welcomed into the family of material.

What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?

We’ve played loads of shows, we’re beyond having lost count now, rather than “another show done” we approach it as “a show”, it’s here, it’s now, it’s what we play for.

Did you enter M2TM thinking you could win it?

Our intention in any endeavour is to give it our all, we knew we were capable, but we knew there were many other bands capable of winning it too! In the end the best outcome was had, two bands went through, we’ll be representing London along with Wretched Toad.

What sort of set list can we expect?

Those who’ve seen us before know that “slow” is not a word we associate with ourselves. Our sound is quite varied so the nature of the feel will progress from start to finish. Expect relentless, neck-breaking, head-banging, punishing metal that by the end will make you beg for more.

Which main stage band do you most hope you’re not clashing with so you can see them play?

We’re very lucky in the sense that we’ll be opening the New Blood Stage on the Sunday, so we won’t be clashing with too many bands at once, but unfortunately we’ll be missing Triaxis on the Sophie stage since their set is the same time as ours. We’re looking forward to pretty much all the bands playing the main and Sophie stages.

What are you working on at the moment?

We’re currently working on our second album, we’re looking to go into studio in 2016. We play some of the new songs live now and again, we’ve aimed to push all the boundaries of what it means to be Skarthia, but the key has been to produce something that makes you want to head-bang, sing along and break stuff.

What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done on tour?

Wildest thing? Gigi. Nothing beats him.

What advice would you give to a young band just starting out today?

If the worst you’ll get is a no, then there was no harm in asking. Be entrepreneurial, seek out all opportunities. Have a goal in mind, work towards it, don’t be afraid to get in touch with bigger names, you’ll be surprised how down to earth some can be. Most importantly, make sure you’re as happy as possible with the music you write, that love will translate over to the audience.

If you could be part of any 3-band line-up (as support or headlining) who else would you have on the bill?

First name that pops up is Lamb of God, watching them from the side of the stage would be a first! Secondly, Death with Chuck Schuldiner alive and back in his place, finally it would have to be Metallica, who wouldn’t want to play with one of the biggest metal bands of all time.

Skarthia open the Hobgoblin New Blood Stage on the Sunday.

Skarthia: facebook | youtube | bigcartel

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August 1, 2015 1:48 PM

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