The Drowning Interview
Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
(Mike): The Drowning falls into the category of the death metal scene, but as genres go, there are always sub genres; the common factor in this case is Doom. We’re not your stereotypical sludge or drone doom. Death metal is the key element to our music although it’s the very down beat and melancholic side to this genre that we have tended to meld the band into.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
(Mike) We started out roughly 13years ago; we started with the usual demo, which was the doom thing. After recording the demo we wasted no more time and went in full hit to the debut album “When the light was taken from us” in 2006. It wasn’t until we recruited more solid, permanent members that we soon started writing the follow us to the debut “ This bleak decent” in 2008.
(Steve) Over the years we’ve had a few members changes but I think this helped open a few more doors creatively. With each album I feel we’ve pushed harder and harder, and feel the music has progressed along side us.
(Mike) After the second full album released in 2008 we went on to record a split album with another UK based band titled “Black lights and silent roads” (2010), |Our next full length album was released in 2011 titled “Fall Jerusalem Fall” Then we had the big member change…. vocals. This opened up a new world of options for us, and I think you can hear that in “Senescent Signs” (2016)
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
Mike: So musically I’d say extreme metal has always been in the forefront for me, whether that’s black, death, doom. All these elements you’ll find in our back catalogue. Taking inspiration from the UK scene back in the day where you had the likes of “My Dying Bride”, “Paradise lost”, “Anathema” and even small inspirations from the Scandinavian black metal scene. Although these elements might be minute within the tracks but this influence has always been there, and still is today. Non-musical influence, general life experiences such as love, loss, past, present are all key factors that help create the feeling of our brand of metal, booth musically and lyrically.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
(Mike) Dreams would certainly be take the band around the world. Open up to a bigger audience. We’re not the kind of band that wants to remain trapped within a scene. We like to try and take a new approach to what we do every time, with every new album. Goals would be progression. Pushing ourselves to produce bigger, better material every time and hopefully reach a wider audience.
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
(Steve) When it comes to the writing process, it’s very much a group effort. Normally Mike will bring us a selection of riffs or ideas and we play though them together to see if they lead anywhere. Jason will often just be playing away in practice and almost out of nowhere we can all lock into something that will later be structured into a track.
(Mike) We leave Matt to the lyrics. He chooses his themes and topics based on what he hears or feel from the music its self.
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
(Mike) Our management handles most of our promotions, whether that’s for shows or album releases. We try to do our bit through the regular social media outlets, but so do everyone these days. Everything about the band is available though our Facebook and bandcamp sites.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
(Mike) It’s the age we’re living in. Love it or hate it, there is nothing we can do about it. It does gets the band out there, more listeners, more ‘likes’ but 90% of the time, bands will never see any return from those. Thankfully due to the vinyl revival, sales of LP’s are growing like wild fire so it’s great for artists these days to recoup money lost on downloads.
PD: What’s your outlook on the record industry today?
(Mike) You get nothing for nothing! No ones going to come knocking your door with a whopping big cheque and a multi-album record deal. The reality of the industry today is that a lot of bands are self-funded.
(Steve) There are great producers and technicians out there than can help create a professional sounding album or video on a budget that can stand up against the big label stuff, but it’s the reach the big labels have that can shadow smaller bands I don’t like.
(Mike) Amongst all this you still need good industry backing to give a band substantial recognition
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
(Mike) Um, right then, wild card here but it would be “Buggles” – ‘Video killed the radio star’
It’s a clever song, with a clever theme, and the hook…..well. Even after all this time it’s such a fun song to play. I’ve always loved it and I will never grow tired of it. This song is begging for a metal rendition.
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
(Mike) Well, where to start! The things that really grind my gears are:
Reality TV, politics, supermarkets, wine drinkers, today’s youth, city life, the list is endless, do I really need to go on? HA HA
PD: What is next for the band? Anything in the works?
(Steve) We didn’t want a long break like there was before ‘Senescent’ again, so we really wasted no time getting back into the studio. We’ve got what I believe to be some strong songs recorded, we’re currently getting the vocals down so hopefully we’ll be in a good place for release in 2018
(Mike) The break between “fall” and the release of “Senescent Signs” was nothing to do with lack of productive writing; it was due to a line up change and extensive shows that kept us from the studio.
(Steve) Even with our current recording in process, we are already making plans for a follow up to that.
(Mike) I think Alfred Hitchcock used to always have his next movie planned whilst filming his current. I guess we’ve adapted the same methods as we’re all in it for the long haul.
PD: Tell us about your next shows and why we should be there.
(Mike) Due to recording we’ve not been very focused on touring at the moment. That being said we are booked to share the stage with American Death metal band “Master” on the 25th of October on our home turf. After that it will be heads down again in order to finish the album.
(Steve) Once the new album is nearing completion we’ll be looking into touring to promote the new release throughout Europe, and anywhere that will have us. If you’d like to book us all our contact details can be found at our Facebook ( www.facebook.com/DrowningWales ) or Bandcamp ( www.drowningwales.bandcamp.com ) Alternatively directly through our management (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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