Alleageon are currently on tour with Obscura heading through the UK and Europe whilst also gearing up to release their new album Apoptosis. Prior to their show at Rebellion in Manchester, I had the opportunity to have a quick chat with vocalist Riley and guitarist Michael about both the new album and some of the things they can’t live without on tour.
How’s the tour been so far?
RM: It’s been pretty awesome. I was actually just telling Greg that when I was first getting into tech-death in college, I picked up three records and one of them was Cosmogenesis by Obscura so it’s super cool to be on the road with them.
You recently released a new single off your upcoming new record, Apoptosis. How do you feel it’s been received?
MS: Super well received.
RM: People really seem to like it. We had a bit of trepidation in releasing stuff for this new record as all the songs are bit different from the earlier stuff. We think it’s all forward progress though. The songs are a bit darker as you can tell from “Stellar (Tidal Disruption)”. The new singles are all in that vein as well but seeing super positive reception is really cool.
Did you work with Dave Otero again?
MS: Yes, we did. I live like 2 blocks away from him so I threaten to burn his house down a lot!
RM: Send me these stems! But yeah, we’ve worked with him for quite a few records now.
What’s the relationship with Shawn Drover?
RM: Ah, he’s uncle Shawn! Him, Greg and Brandon have got a tight relationship with him. We did a tour with his band Act of Defiance a few years ago and he’s a bit of ball buster! He gets as good he gives when he tours with us though.
I noticed you have a new headless guitar Michael. How did you end up getting that?
MS: I got a headless from Kiesel about 6 months ago and I signed with them in March 2018. I’ve been wanting a headless guitar for about 10 years now but they used to be really expensive so I couldn’t afford one. I always thought they were really cool as I saw Paul Masvidal from Cynic use one but they not that popular and thus really expensive. When Kiesel offered one I was like “Oh, hell, yeah!”. It has an 8 string trem system on it as well which is really cool.
RM: Lay down some more spec for us. Guitar nerd out!
MS: It’s made of wood and metal and has wires in it! (Laughs) It’s an alder body, flame maple top and then a 5 piece maple neck with a maple fretboard. What’s funny is I have a swamp ash Kiesel with a headstock that’s bigger and lighter! Use the big one: light! Use the small one: heavy.
What are three things you can’t live without on tour?
RM: Clean socks number one. What you say is number two?
MS: I’d say Febreeze.
RM: Yeah, so clean socks, Febreeze…
MS: And headphones.
RM: Headphones. I use headphones and have a white noise app on my phone to help me sleep. I’m a very light sleeper and a giant piece of shit when I get woken up. My wife is scared of waking me up because I’m like an angry bear! Sometimes it works too well and I don’t wake up until 3 in the afternoon!
MS: It’s really easy to do that in bunks with the black curtains. There’s no windows at the top of the bus either so sleeping in does occur.
What is a local band form your area that you think people should check out?
MS: For Denver I’d say Tethys. They’ve got some really people in that band and they’re friends of ours.
RM: The vocalist is in another band local there and they are both getting some attention now which is good.
What is one thing you wish someone told you before you started?
RM: Save money!
MS: Yeah, don’t do it! No, I think be prepared to persevere.
RM: Yeah, I think persevere. It’s going to take a long time to get somewhere in this day and age and about 10 years to get to the stage where you get bigger tours and become self-sustaining.
And finally, Tea or Coffee?
Both: Coffee. For sure.