Metal Anarchy’s New Music Showcase: Exclusive Q&A With Hell & Hollar

Time for the next edition of Metal Anarchy’s “new music showcase,” the feature where I introduce you to bands that readers of this site may find interesting. This time I have an exclusive Q&A with Blake Burns of Hell & Hollar.

METAL ANARCHY: Tell me a little about your band:

BURNS: H&H is essentially a rock band with no walls. We love all things music and really enjoy crossing genres, but we are a rock band, so that part is always there. We are all great friends and it shows in the music and performances.

METAL ANARCHY: Who are your main influences?

BURNS: Masters of Reality, Queens of the Stone Age, Frank Black, and lots of stuff from the 60’s and 70’s.

METAL ANARCHY: What is your latest release and why should readers of this site check it out?

BURNS: Our latest release is our debut video for “Showdown” from our debut EP 442. We had a lot of fun making this video and how it came together was incredible. We literally got a group of friends together to make the cast. Even Cam Brooks of Cam Brooks Creative and I have been friends since we can remember. He did an amazing job on this and we can’t thank him enough. I gave him the creative control and he came up with the idea to kinda do a Cool Hand Luke inspired theme. I loved the idea and we ran with it. How much fun we had making it shows in the final product and that alone is reason enough to check it out.

METAL ANARCHY: What can people expect when they go to your live shows?

BURNS: A high energy good time rock show.

METAL ANARCHY: Where do you see your band heading in 5 years?

BURNS: Hopefully continuing the current growth we have fortunately seen lately. We have a lot of hard work ahead of us, but we truly love what we do and can’t wait to start sharing some of the new music we have been working on for our next record. So make sure you follow us on all our social media to stay up to date with what’s happening here at Hell & Hollar.

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Interview: Awake At Last’s Vincent Torres Talks New Album “The Change”

Awake At Last will release their new album “The Change” on June 21 and I was recently given the opportunity to interview vocalist Vincent Torres about the effort. You can check out that chat below.

METAL ANARCHY: First of all, how would you describe your music for those who may be unfamiliar with you?

TORRES: I like to say that Awake At Last is a theatrical rock band. We use heavy guitars and huge drums with straight forward rhythms, but we also weave in a symphonic dramatic element that gives it some signature. The heavy music represents the obstacles we talk a lot about like mental health, heart break, and the darker elements of the world and the theatrical lyrics and symphonic elements are meant to nurture the listener and inspire them to overcome the obstacles that life loves to throw at us.

METAL ANARCHY: What would you like to tell readers of this site about your new album “The Change”?

TORRES: The Change is a build up of everything we’ve done so far. And for me as the primary lyricist it is a major part of the story I’ve been trying to tell with my music. The story is about a life that is plagued by obstacles of all kinds but still manages to bring about a great artistic revolution in the world. It talks a lot about humanity and the emotional constructs that entails, but also technology and how certain aspects of humanity are lost in this modern world we live in. I hope that the listeners can put themselves into the character and are elevated and inspired by the message The Change brings them.

METAL ANARCHY: Would you say the effort is a natural progression from your “Life/Death/Rebirth” EP?

TORRES: Actually yeah, The Change is actually a direct sequel to LIfe/Death/Rebirth, and follows the character from the previous EP on their journey through the next life as they try and break the reincarnation cycle by imbuing this new vessel with all of the accumulated knowledge and experience of their past lives. They hope that in doing this they can live a perfect life and finally move onto the next step of their souls journey. Listeners will notice that the music is a bit different from our previous works but that’s also because it represents a different character and their current life.

METAL ANARCHY: You have already released three singles from “The Change.” How have fans been responding to the new material?

TORRES: We have been blown away by the love and support our fans have been showing. Sometimes it can be really nerve wrecking to release new material because you never know if it’s what your fans and listeners are looking for from your band. It’s been an absolute blast seeing their response and so far I have very good vibes for what is to come. We have an amazing fan base and we’ve chosen very different singles to roll this album out with, and so far they’ve all gotten great responses so I can’t wait to see whats next.

METAL ANARCHY: What are some of your personal favorite tracks from the album?

TORRES: I love all of the songs for very different reasons, but I will say that “The Change” is one of my all time favorites, and I pretty much had that song fully written in my head going into the studio. There’s also a song called “Unobtainable” that I think is extremely relatable, and one of my all time favorites is “Fallen Stars” which in my opinion really tells the Awake At Last Message. I really can’t wait to see how our fans respond to the new material.

METAL ANARCHY: What was it like working with Spencer Charnas (Ice Nine Kills) on the title track?

TORRES: I was able to meet with Spencer a few times before he recorded his parts for the song, but we didn’t actually sit in the studio together when we did it. Most of it was discussed beforehand and I trusted his ability to perform as awesome as he did. He’s an amazing artist and a great singer so it was awesome to have the opportunity to work with him on one of the tracks on this album.

METAL ANARCHY: What can fans expect from your upcoming shows in support of the effort?

TORRES: We are really excited to bring these songs to a live audience, and every track is accompanied with small pieces of story that help to take our listeners on a journey throughout the live show. We always bring a lot of energy to the stage but it’s also become a lot more about the listeners and the people in the room so the best way to see what we’re bringing to the table live is to come and check out a live show!

METAL ANARCHY: Lastly, where do you see your band heading in five years?

TORRES: Man… five years is a long time. Truthfully I would love to see the band gain some real success and I’d love to put out a few more records and maybe introduce a more theatrical vibe in the future. We’ve never really had big production budgets so I’ve never really gotten to mess around with stage props, or maybe a really cool visual element we could bring to the table. I know that one thing is for sure. I hope that we can continue to inspire our listeners to pursue fulfilling lives and to not let their circumstances weigh them down and be living proof that with positivity and perseverance and a little bit of organization you can take your dreams and make them a reality. In 5 years I’d love to be in a position where I’d be able to help other developing artists as well.

I would like to thank Torres for the interview. “The Change” will be released on June 21 and my review of the album can be found HERE.

Metal Anarchy’s New Music Showcase: Exclusive Q&A With Lucid Afterlife

Time for the next edition of Metal Anarchy’s “new music showcase,” the feature where I introduce you to bands that readers of this site may find interesting. This time I have an exclusive Q&A with Lucid Afterlife.

METAL ANARCHY: Tell me a little about your band:

LUCID AFTERLIFE: We are a group of dudes experimenting with our instruments either writing in the studio or improvising on the stage. We like to play whatever channels through, usually psych rock but we mix it up style wise as much as we can.

METAL ANARCHY: Who are your main influences?

LUCID AFTERLIFE: Black Sabbath, Dream Theater, David Bowie, Porcupine Tree, anything cool really.

METAL ANARCHY: What is your latest release and why should readers of this site check it out?

LUCID AFTERLIFE: We are set to release a six song album called “Descendant” on May 21st through Forbidden Place Records. We really mashed up some styles on this one and mastered the entire thing in 432 hz to give it a unique frequency. “Descendant” has been made over 2 years and recorded in 4 different countries. It’s a true rock journey.

METAL ANARCHY: What can people expect when they go to your live shows?

LUCID AFTERLIFE: Expect the unexpected, it’s not a concert it’s a ceremony and you will only know what we mean by being there.

METAL ANARCHY: Where do you see your band heading in 5 years?

LUCID AFTERLIFE: Testing the boundaries of rock & metal, and following our intuition into the unknown.

Metal Anarchy’s New Music Showcase: Exclusive Q&A With Vanilla Sugar

Time for the next edition of Metal Anarchy’s “new music showcase,” the feature where I introduce you to artists that readers of this site may find interesting. This time I have an exclusive Q&A with Vanilla Sugar.

METAL ANARCHY: Tell me a little about your music:

VANILLA SUGAR: Vanilla Sugar is made of Alternative / Electronic music, a pop vocal sensibility, with a Metal influence.

METAL ANARCHY: Who are your main influences?

VANILLA SUGAR: I find a lot of inspiration in Sleigh Bells, Grimes, Korn, The Prodigy, and Mindless Self Indulgence.

METAL ANARCHY: What is your latest release and why should readers of this site check it out?

VANILLA SUGAR: My new single will be released in a few months! I am traveling to Houston, TX to shoot the music video in a week. This new song is totally different from anything I’ve released before. I’m very happy with it and excited to share it with everyone.

METAL ANARCHY: What can people expect when they go to your live shows?

VANILLA SUGAR: People can expect an extremely high energy performance, with a light show to match. I am the kind of person who believes in putting on a full show for people; lights, music, stage props, the whole thing.

METAL ANARCHY: Where do you see your project heading in 5 years?

VANILLA SUGAR: Ideally, I see Vanilla Sugar continuing to tour globally, and releasing a few more albums by that time.

Metal Anarchy’s New Music Showcase: Exclusive Q&A With The NorthmeN

Time for the next edition of Metal Anarchy’s “new music showcase,” the feature where I introduce you to bands that readers of this site may find interesting. This time I have an exclusive Q&A with The NorthmeN.

METAL ANARCHY: Tell me a little about your band:

THE NORTHMEN: We are a hard rock/metal band made up of four guys from Watertown NY. Originally formed by Matt and Jeremy back in 2015, Brendan and I (Alix) joined in 2017 and we’ve been working very hard ever since.

METAL ANARCHY: Who are your main influences?

THE NORTHMEN: Collectively as a band I’d say our biggest influences are Metallica, Avenged Sevenfold, and Bullet For My Valentine.

METAL ANARCHY: What is your latest release and why should readers of this site check it out?

THE NORTHMEN: We just recently released our music video for ‘Forevermore’ which is one of our fan favorites during our live show. The video actually shows clips from one of our shows and the interaction between us and our fans.

METAL ANARCHY: What can people expect when they go to your live shows?

THE NORTHMEN: From the moment our intro song starts, the energy hits us. Once we step onto that stage we give 100% and start our set off with a high energy song. Throughout the show we make sure to keep the crowd participating and keep their focus to give them the best experience we can.

METAL ANARCHY: Where do you see your band heading in 5 years?

THE NORTHMEN: We are all on the same page with where we want to be in the future. In 5 years we would like to have a couple albums finished and be full time touring musicians.

Metal Anarchy’s New Music Showcase: Exclusive Q&A With Sue

Time for the next edition of Metal Anarchy’s “new music showcase,” the feature where I introduce you to bands that readers of this site may find interesting. This time I have an exclusive Q&A with Sue.

METAL ANARCHY: Tell me a little about your band:

SUE: I (Elliot) first started SUE in September 2016, making demos in my dad’s music room. After a couple months of experimentation I decided to get a band together, and after a year and a half of lineup changes Ashley (Guitar), Harry (Bass), and Euan (Drums) became the permanent members in 2018. Since then we’ve been doing as many shows as we can, as well releasing an EP in 2018 and our debut album on May 1, 2019.

METAL ANARCHY: Who are your main influences?

SUE: Fugazi was a big influence, they really embraced the punk philosophy and the DIY attitude. Metz were also very important; they introduced me to Noise rock and were the gatekeeper to all the bands that followed. I also can’t forget the Man in Black: Johnny Cash was the fist artist to get me interested in songwriting.

METAL ANARCHY: What is your latest release and why should readers of this site check it out?

SUE: ‘It Will Never End’ is SUE’s debut album; a 12 track concept album split into three acts (Senseless, Reckless, Endless). It explores these themes with a chaotic and manic nature. Any fans of hardcore or heavy music will find something they enjoy in the album.

METAL ANARCHY: What can people expect when they go to your live shows?

SUE: A lot of jumping, screaming, distorted tones and heart-pumping tempos.

METAL ANARCHY: Where do you see your band heading in 5 years?

SUE: Well I hope we’re signed to a label by then and got some more releases in the bag; doing some tours would also be fantastic.

Metal Anarchy’s New Music Showcase: Exclusive Q&A With Brand Of Julez

Time for the next edition of Metal Anarchy’s “new music showcase,” the feature where I introduce you to bands that readers of this site may find interesting. This time I have an exclusive Q&A with Julez Zamora of Brand Of Julez.

METAL ANARCHY: Tell me a little about your band:

ZAMORA: Brand of Julez is a hard rock band from NYC with heavy riffs, passionate vocals and a groove that makes you wanna headbang all day and night. My brother and I formed the band back in 2012 at 13 and 16. Since then we’ve been grinding away starting out in the small pubs in the boroughs of NYC to playing some of the biggest clubs in the city. From there, we felt it was time to finally hit the road and take our brand of rock outside the Tri-state area. We are currently finishing up our next album and gearing up for a West Coast tour with the band Messer at the end of May 2019.

METAL ANARCHY: Who are your main influences?

ZAMORA: As the singer/guitarist of the band, it all started with Kurt Cobain for me. From there I fell in love with all the rock bands in the 90’s, STP, Soundgarden, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Rage Against The Machine, Alice In Chains, Bush, all those bands. Today I’m mainly influenced by a mixture of new bands like Pop Evil, Papa Roach, Asking Alexandria, Jared James Nichols, Like A Storm, Rival Sons, Tyler Bryant And The Shakedown, Black Stone Cherry, and a bunch more! A good mixture of old school and new school.

METAL ANARCHY: What is your latest release and why should readers of this site check it out?

ZAMORA: Our latest release is our current single “Take It All Away”. The opening of the song captures you instantly with Martin Luther King Jr’s voice: “Somewhere I read that the greatness of America is the right to protest- for right.” From there the riff smacks you in the face and immediately makes you want to start headbanging. The song is about the political status of our country but not rooting for the left or right. We the people ultimately have the control and can take it all away at any point. There so much division in our country, this tune is about a Latino from the South Bronx telling his side.

METAL ANARCHY: What can people expect when they go to your live shows?

ZAMORA: Lots of HAIR. SWEAT. ENERGY. Hahaha. Everyone in our band has long curly hair (totally by accident!). We want to bring a show to the people so if we see you sitting down or not having the best night of your life, our goal is to change that.

METAL ANARCHY: Where do you see your band heading in 5 years?

ZAMORA: More albums and more touring. Maybe some Europe tour dates by then? We have no intention of stopping this train.