Witching Metal Webzine

Witching Metal Webzine

Monday, February 28, 2011

Interview with Sean from Avalon Steel

Avalon Steel are an up-and-coming Heavy Metal band from America who play old-school Heavy Metal in the vein of Judas Priest, Van Halen, Diamond Head and early Metallica. I had a nice chat with their guitar player, Sean, who formed the band with his brother a couple of years ago.

Hey Sean, lets kick this interview off, how are you doing today?

I'm alright, it's been a long weekend. Unfortunately, my day is nearing it's end for me. It's just after 9 pm here.

Time to kick back until bed time, eh? Well lets get into it.
Tell me and the readers about Avalon Steel, who’s in the band, what style you play and how you got started.

Well, I, Sean, play guitar; my brother, Nick, plays the drums; the other Nick, plays guitar; and Zac does the vocals. So far I've written alot of the material, although Zac has his own material he's written as well.

I'd say we're a traditional heavy metal band, with some doom and thrash influences. Kinda like Judas Priest meets '82 Metallica or something. Very NWOBHM styled shit.

The band has been something that's developed over the past few years. It started off as just my brother and I, then we found a singer and bassist. That lineup lasted maybe less than a year. Found new singer, bassist, and another guitarist and it's been nearly the same since then ('cept bass). It's all about sticking to your guns and being patient. We're all high school kids, not many of our age like the same type of music so we have to hold on to what we have.

Interesting mix of styles there, mate. What bands would you say have influenced your musical style? What do you listen to on a day-to-day basis?

Personally, my influences are stuff like Van Halen (Eddie is my idol), Diamond Head, Slayer, Megadeth, Priest, Sabbath, Maiden... the usual shit, ya know? I try to have some songs that show off my interests.

I have a very eclectic taste. I'll go from rockabilly stuff like Stray Cats to something like Morbid Angel. I listen to metal a lot though, old USPM, trad, thrash, etc. I really love blues, the Mississippi Delta and the later boogie when they electrified everything. Celtic music is another thing, the old folk music and whatnot. I've attempted to pick up the bagpipes, my brother has gotten farther on me on those things though! I try to be open minded, but I usually maintain the "old schoolness" as I'm not too big on a lot of modern bands. So, in a nut shell... I listen to alot of different shit during the week. Music ADD, man!

Wide variety of interests and taste, that's what I like to hear!
Where are you guys from, what’s the music scene like there? Are there any up and coming local bands my readers and I should know about?

We're based in Charlotte, North Carolina in the "Good ol' " (Ha.) USA. The scene ... well lemme tell ya, it sucks for us. On one side you got these indie hipsters with there ukes and scarves, another with screamo kids and pig squeals, and then a lot of cover bands. The scene really goes up and down all the time. About a few times a year we'll geta good band to come and play, like Overkill and their ilk. The rest of the time? Meh. Punk does pretty decent however, The Milestone was a regular host to bands like Antiseen and Black Flag back in their heyday.

The metal scene is kinda tiny, but it thrives. Old metalheads come outta the woods when a bigger band comes to town.

Although, there's a few bands that I would think the metalhead crowd would enjoy. Final Curse is probably the most prominent thrash band around these parts, Pantera meets Exodus with a good dash of Slayer. Perpetual Nightmare is a pretty good death metal band, these guys play loads and they're about my age! And for the old school, breakneck speed thrashers, Nemesis. They're all about the evil and fast shit. Another band that has yet to grace the stage, Sleepless, they're thrash as well, but more in the '85 vein. Kickass shit.

Overall, a lot of these bands, including mine are all friends. If one of us has a show, most of the members of these bands will be at that show. We've got a small, close-knit scene. Everyone knows everyone.

Sounds like you guys have a pretty cool scene going on there, however small it may be.
Now, from what I understand, Avalon Steel has been working towards putting out their debut demo, what can you tell me about this upcoming release?

We've been on this a long time now. We've got a couple of tracks down, we've just gotta go back in and finish those off and add a few more. It's taking very long for us to finish due to everyone's schedule.The engineer/producer/recording guy is the father of a really good friend of mine, he's a hard guy to get free time with, but he's doing this for free so I'm not complaining. The guy has some good software, Sony Vegas, so it's not gonna sound like your old tape deck mics. It'll be "legit".

I'm hoping to get at least 5 tracks on this baby, some fast, some slow, a good variety. We'll probably end up streaming the thing on the internet, it's the best way to get stuff out there besides shows. I hate that it's taking forever it seems that we've been having an "upcoming demo" for a long time now, but we just have to wait. No need to rush, ya know? I don't want sloppy.

It sounds like you guys are really putting your hearts into this and taking your time to perfect it for yourselves.
Out of curiosity, have any members of Avalon Steel been involved in other musical endeavors? If so, what are/were they?

Yeah, this band is my life.
My other guitarist, Nick, was in a music program called Streetwise RockShop (formerly known as School of Rock until Pete Green came along). It's basically where people (ranging from kids to teens) can get outta playing in the bedroom and in a band. It's a neat little thing, we've played with them a few times. We've gotten a lot of members from that program, too. Teehee.
The rest of us? Eh, nothing stuck to really mention it haha.
I'd personally like to start a rockabilly band as a side project, or at least just a plain rock n roll band. But, Avalon Steel is my main focus.

It's great to hear you speak with such passion and enthusiasm about your band! I can really see that you have a real love for what you are doing.
Before we wrap this interview up, I was wondering if you have any memorable and/or funny stories and experiences from your musical career so far that you would like to share?

I remember this garage show we played back some time last year, I think we were invited to play some songs for the party... a NASCAR weekend party. The neighborhood was ironically really uppity looking, the nice houses and green lawns, so a squad of young metalheads didn't exactly fit in.

Anyways, we start playing, they're watching and I can see that we're all thinking "Do they like this shit?" We were playing stuff like Slayer and priest and whatnot. We only had about 40 min of material, it was a brand new band with a new lineup there was no time for learning a lot of songs. So it was kinda like "Quick, jam on something!" Nick starts a drum solo to fill in some time, and he's giving me some nods as he's trying to tell me soemthing, he was playing the Hot for Teacher intro. So, I come in and jam in the riffs on the song, noodle around for a solo and just totally BS'd the song. On the flipside, all the rednecks in the crowd were stoked, one of the guys ran up to his house and came back wearing a Joe Dirt mullet and screaming on the top of his lungs.

So it turned out to be a short, but good show. I didn't think we'd have a starting fanbase from NASCAR fans...

And another one… We were out at a gig, hanging around the back. We start walking around the back so we can get to the front. There was this old black guy at the corner of the building, at first I thought he was just standing there watering something.... and then I realize he's no gardener.. and that wasn't water. The fucking dude was taking a piss right in front of us! Didn't even bother to turn to face the wall or even go to a nearby bush. We turn the corner and everyone bursted out laughing. Old black man with his dick in his hand...

Some other stories we have are more like Spinal Tap issues, management getting mad at us and not lettings us play, or the fact that some just won't reach the light of day!

Great story, you guys should market yourselves as NASCAR metal!
What’s next for Avalon Steel other than the aforementioned soon to be released demo? Any shows, tours, or anything else we should know about?

Haha! Every redneck would listen.
We've got one small show next month. Hopefully more shows in the next few months, I'd love to try to tour around this summer, at least around the state or region. Depends on funding, we're musicians.
I'm working on designs on shirts (I do my own artwork), a change up from our older and simpler design. It's gonna be on a baseball 3/4 inch sleeve shirt. Pretty rad shit. And maybe some patches in the near feature... I'm thinking logo and biker style. But that's probably as far as it'll go, no Avalon Steel'd undies or coffee mugs. We're not KISS.
We're currently looking for a bass player as well. But we might just kidnap a scenie kid and force a metal inquistion.
I'm looking forward to get these gears turning.

Damn, I wanted a pair of undies and a beer mug! Haha.
Now to finish off, I want to thank you for doing this interview, I really appreciate it and hope you enjoyed this as much as I did. I am really looking forward to hearing (and reviewing!) Avalon Steels’ demo.
I’m gonna let you have the last word here, is there anything you would like to say to my readers out there in internet land?

Haha, maybe when we're bigger.
Don't be dicks! No, haha.
We're not wanting to be the next Metallica, we're not about reinventing the wheel, leave that to the sweater wearing proggy guys, we're just doing what we love.
If you're in a band, get to it and rock the fuck out! If you not, find one... or if you're just a listener, support those bands! AC/DC wasn't kidding, it's a long way to the top if ya wanna rock n roll. Blood, sweat, and lots o' beers goes into this. But it's worth it when you're out on stage and showing off the hard work you've put into it.

Terminate - Demo

I recently received in the mail a Demo CD from a Death Metal band from Morton Grove, Illinois in the USA. I’ve given it a few spins and come to the conclusion that it rips fucking arse! This is a great slab of OSDM that brings to mind two bands specifically: Bolt Thrower and Dismember. If this doesn’t get you tight or wet in the pantylooms then you are a false, please do not entry.

It starts off with the track “Rotten Dead Mess” which opens with a slow-ish heavy intro riff that builds up to a faster riff when the vocals kick in. It’s a straightforward DM song in the old Swedeath style, with a nice bit of Bolt Thrower thrown into the mix (what’d I tell ya before?). The vocals keep a consistent tone throughout the song with the occasional slightly higher pitched line. The drums plod along at the perfect pace and drive the riffage perfectly. There is also a killer melodic solo/riff thing towards the end of the song to change things up a bit. All in all a great Death Metal tune.

The next track “Chainsaw Omega” gets right down to business with the speedy riffs and aggressive sounding vocals. The “chainsaw” guitar tone is really evident in this song and sounds great. The bass is quite audible which adds a cool touch. The drums keep a constant pace throughout the song The lyrics are also bloody great!

Your life never felt more important to you until the moment I cut off your arms.
You try to repent, but it is too late. The chainsaw has done all the work.

I see nothing but red. All-consuming passion for death.
Life racing out from your veins. Shrouding the walls as your life slips away.
This feeling that you wish would end, I do everything to prolong and extend.
Agony, my aphrodisiac. And your terror confirming that I am your god.

Lying there helpless you look up at me as blood gurgles out of your mouth.
Exalted and glorified is how I feel. The Omega I have become.

The third and final track “Answered In Lead” again starts off with a slow intro riff quickly leading into faster riffs that are actually pretty melodic in the Dismember style. The pace changes up quite a bit in this song which keeps the listener on their toes.

All in all this is a great demo that I would highly recommend to any OSDM fan. Especially those of us who jerk off to Bolt Thrower and Dismember.


Get it through the band themselves at:



Interview with Anglachel

As of today I will also be conducting interviews for this site. Here is one of my first interviews.

Today I had the (dis)pleasure of corresponding with M, the unholy spectre behind the black metal project Anglachel via email. Here is the resulting ramblings:

Hails M. For the sake of myself and my readers, let's start this interview off with a brief history of Anglachel and a run-down of what you're all about musically.

Ave Wayde.
Anglachel was formed in the late months of 2009 by myself and our now ex drummer. A small two track demo was sent to a select few people in 2010, some prominent rituals were offered to us but due to line-up issues we were unable to participate.

What influences Anglachel? What bands and styles influence the music? What is Anglachel's ideology all about?

First and foremost my God influences Anglachel and our music. The darkness throughout our existance and brooding wilderness is a main inspiration.
Musically, we are influenced prominently by metal bands such as Dissection, (the true) Mayhem, Archgoat, Dead Congregation, 90's Emperor, Bathory (worship!), Beherit, Celtic Frost, Ulcus, Drudkh, Woodtemple, Summoning, Tribulation,
Poccolus, Graveland etc.

Is Anglachel a solo project, or are there other fiends involved in the creative process?

I, myself am the spectre behind Anglachel and it's ideaologies, musical direction. However, I never wanted to be another bedroom black metal band and am currently recruiting a whole new line-up to help in the recording process and of course the gigging.
It is one of my main goals to be able to put on an interesting and heartfelt live show.

Are you working on recording or writing any material at the moment, do you have any releases planned for the near future?

I have begun writing for an E.P and some small sample recordings have been done. I aim to have the E.P recorded and pressed within the year.
I am very optimistic with the sound and I feel it is 100% true to myself.

Are you involved in any other projects? If so, what are they?

Currently I am only involved in Anglachel and a Doom/Heavy metal band that is currently un-named.

Within the local Wollongong/Illawarra area, are there any other bands that interest you? What's the scene like around there for extreme music in all it's forms? Any stand out's that people should be aware of?

There are a few bands in my area who are of interest and I support whole heartedly.
There are next to no live shows in the Illawarra, especially for extreme metal. It is unfortunate but has always been evident that it simply won't happen in this area.
Bands that are definately worth checking out from this region are;
Drowning The Light, Austere, Woods of Desolation.

Will Anglachel ever perform live rituals? Has there been any already?

Anglachel will definately perform live rituals. I like to be optimistic, but realistically they will take place in 2012 (our doom year!).
There have never been any Anglachel rituals to date.

To wrap this interview up, I would like to thank you for taking the time for this interview, I appreciate it. Is there anything you would like to say to myself or my readers?

Thank you for the interview Wayde. It is appreciated on this end too. Stay true to the scene and be forever defiant! 666.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Denouncement Pyre - World Cremation

Alright so, what are us Aussies good at?
If you answered that question with “Creating absolute ripper Black/Death metal!” then you get a gold star.

Denouncement Pyre is a band from Melbourne that has featured members of Nocturnal Graves, Stargazer and Destroyer 666, to name a few. If this doesn’t get you tight in the pants then stop reading right now.

What we have here is their recently released first full length “World Cremation”, a great Black Metal album that incorporates different elements from various styles of Black and Death Metal. Throughout the album you will find catchy headbanging riffs, drawn-out melodic passages, chaotic blasting “bestial” sections all drenched in an aggressive and sometimes epic atmosphere. I’m not sure if I could pinpoint too many specific influences here, but that’s the beauty of it, I’d say. It’s certainly not super original but they don’t sound like any particular other bands. They have their own flavour.

I don’t really think there is a particular stand-out track on this release, but that’s not a bad thing as every track is excellent. My favourites are probably “Engulfed Temples” and “A Banner Drenched In Blood”.

In conclusion, everything about this album is good, from the killer guitar sound to the menacing vocals to the cool drumming to the audible bass. I have nothing bad to say about it and urge anyone into Aussie Black/Death to check it out. In fact, I liked it so much that I am now trying to track down their EP’s to purchase. I managed to hunt down “Hells Infantry” on eBay last week and it kills just as much as the album.

Worship this band!


Buy it from the best online label out there like I did:


Thursday, February 17, 2011

Stormbane - Abyssus Abyssum Invocat

Stormbane are a band from Melbourne, Australia, that play a kickarse blend of Dissection and Destroyer 666 worshipping black, death and thrash metal. Abyssus Abyssum Invocat is their second EP.

This release starts off fast and furious with the song “Three Fates” which is a great track full of catchy and melodic riffs and killer vocals that really shows how the bands sound has “matured” since their first demo.

The second track, “Seraph” is my favourite. It brings to mind bands such as Tribulation, Angelcorpse, Repugnant and Morbid Angel. It’s a straightforward thrashing death metal stomper and it rips!

The title track is a nice instrumental that reminds me of Swedish style “melodic” black metal a la bands such as Dissection, Dawn and Watain. Cool atmosphere and melodies throughout.

The fourth and final song, Ruins From A Fallen world begins with a really cool slow and melodic intro that builds into a catchy as fuck riff-fest of a song, not to mention it has an awesome chorus! All in all another stellar track.

This release does not disappoint at all. 5/5

Buy it directly from the band through their myspace or facebook, if you’re nice they’ll do you a good deal!



Hellcannon - Infected With Violence

Well fuck, it’s been a while since I’ve written for my good ol’ site here hasn’t it? What better way to make a return could there be then by reviewing the first full length release of the first band I reviewed on here?

Anyone who’s followed this blog should know who these boys from Buffolo, New York are by now. But just for shits and giggles here’s a quick rundown of their history thus far:
Formed in 2009 they self-released their demo/EP Raiders of the Waste that year and you can find my review for that here: http://witchingmetal.blogspot.com/2009/11/hellcannon-raiders-of-wastes-demoep.html Since then these guys have been working hard playing gigs and writing songs for their full length, Infected With Violence which was recorded in December 2009 but not actually released until a year later. I eagerly awaited this the whole time, and boy was it worth the wait!

It kicks off with the ripper opening track “Leviathan” which is a definite example of what you’re in for if there ever was any. Bludgeoning riffs, inhuman vocals, tight drumming, audible bass and straightforward intense headbanging songs that are just good violent fun, which is everything I expect from a thrash record of this style.

There’s a few tracks from the first release on here (“Speed Killer”, “Sacrifice by Fire” and “Raiders of the Waste”) and I’d say they sound reasonably better then they did on the EP. The production bothered me a bit at first as it’s not as raw as the EP, which suited the sound really well, but after a few more listens it’s grown on me and does the job just fine. I have no complaints about the production.

The stand outs on here would have to be the vocals and the guitar sound. They just reek of the kind of attitude that rips ya nuts out and feeds them to your grandma while not giving a fuck. My personal favourite songs on this album would have to be “Chainsaw Ripping Death”, “Raiders of the Waste” and “Sacrifice by Fire”, although every song on here is good.

All in all this album is good, solid beef and sounds like an old-school sounding metal band having a good time and, I mean, what more could you ask for?


Just buy this right fucking now, you will not regret it: