Feb 7, 2012
Thunder Noise From Miami - Interview With Shroud Eater ...
Hi Jean! How are you? I hope that you have time to answer few questions about Shroud Eater, do you?
What kind of questions about the band do you dislike more than others? Something about fragile lasses playing harsh and sludgy stuff, isn’t it?
-Haha, questions about the band being ⅔ female comes up fairly often, I guess it is still a novelty for some people to hear something and assume it’s a bunch of bearded dudes, and then see something totally different. It’s cool to twist people’s minds up.
You’re live in Miami and it seems (to me from winter Russia) that the place is quite warm and peaceful, we know that environment somehow must inflict onto artist, how does the city inspire you? Why such savage tunes were born there?
-If you’ve ever driven a vehicle in Miami, you would understand the ferocity of our music. Driving is the only time I feel very close to committing vehicular homicide. Seriously!
What kind of vehicle do you have? Is it decorated with horns and skulls? Oh, and what do you usually listen driving your car?
-Janette and I share vehicles - she has a small SUV, and my car is our big touring van. Both vehicles are plain to not garner too much attention. Usually during the week I drive her vehicle because my van is too tall to park in the garage where I work! Recently I've been playing a lot of Saviour's new album "Death's Procession" in my car rides.
Shroud Eater sounds bloody wild and anarchic but I see that you very carefully come to production of your Ep and first full-length CD “Thunder Noise”, was this release a kind of emotional burst which you simply needed to do or was it absolutely conscious process of artistic creation?
-It was a little bit of both. I would say the music on ThunderNoise didn’t have a conscious process of creation - it was way more instinctual. The material we’re working on now has more of a conscious effort put in, at least from my own standpoint.
-We have four songs completed, and we've just recently slotted time at the end of March to record those songs with Jonathan Nuñez (Torche, Shitstorm). We are just beginning working on a 5th song, so hopefully it would be great to record that as well if it makes the cut, we'll see!
Jean, you are a graphic designer, but we know your works only due to Shroud Eaters releases, did you ever decorate releases of other bands? Where else can we see your works?
-I don’t have a proper website to show projects I’ve done, but I’m working on it, I swear! I did a Medusa design for my friends in Germany, PLANKS. The design was on back patches and tote bags but I believe it’s been sold out. I recently completed the art for our Florida brothers JUNIOR BRUCE - their record “The Headless King” is being released by A389 Records at the end of the month. I’m completing the art layout for my other good Florida friends in FIRE IN THE CAVE, their “Civilized Swamp” EP is being released via NK Tapes soonish, I believe. I’m also working on the album art for a compilation album of some of Florida’s heaviest, I can’t release more details on that other than the comp will be chock full of the sickest Floridian stoner, doom, sludge, thrash & black metal bands. Other than that, I usually design flyers for gigs we have coming up. No biggie.
It would be good to share a link or two onto your works! By the way do you have some common source of inspiration for you as a painter and as musician?
-Yeah there's definitely a common source, the things I read about or have interests in, (poetry, the occult, etc) with music and words it's one aspect of the interpretation and then artistically it's more of a visual interpretation. I'm really quite interested in doing "music videos" for our band, something that finally mixes all the media together as one unit - visual, musical, lyrical. That would be quite cool.
Firstly “Thunder Noise” was pressed only in 100 copies, and then was second edition (50 copies) with different layout. I know that you always try to play as much as possible and I know that CDs are better sell during gigs, does this rule works with Shroud Eater? And haven’t you still got any good offer from some labels?
-Merch always goes fast at live gigs - we are currently sold out of our album, and the ep, although they are both available at our bandcamp page for digital downloads. I’m not planning on doing more pressings of either of the albums, as I would personally rather invest in new recordings and releases. It is funny, so many interviews I get asked if the band has been contacted by labels interested in our tunes! Unfortunately we have not been contacted by any labels, but that is not a deterrent for us making and releasing music. Maybe one day we will have a label that backs us up, but I won’t be holding my breath waiting on that day.
“We Are Beasts” – the song which still represents Shroud Eater clearer than other songs, I bet that none could withstand it’s charm; do you have another killer-track which will be more popular than this one? Well, which of your songs has more of a warm welcome at your gigs?
-Funny that you should mention that track. We have not played “We Are Beasts” in probably about a year. A lot of people do ask us after shows why it’s not part of the live set, but I feel as if we, as a band, have outgrown the track.
It seems to me while playing, when I look out into the audience, that people quite enjoy “Baying of Jackals” and “Pale Rider”. We have a new track titled “Tempest” that recently we have gotten many people telling us after gigs that they were really into it.
Hey, Jean, how did you find that you could sing with such harsh voice? Is it another effect of hard traffic in Miami?
-Probably, yes! I certainly yell a lot of terrible obscenities at drivers. The car is one of the best places to practice screaming for me because I do so much of it already.
Okay, which song represents your own nature sharper than others? Do you unleash your “beasts” only when you’re on stage or is it your natural way of living?
-I would say my inner beast comes out only on stage (or when quite inebriated). To me, the track “Baying of Jackals” represents a lot of what I deal with on a daily basis, and how i react and interpret the world around me.
I just wonder how your live shows go… Does anything except for bar are left unbroken after your barbaric attacks? Can you tell about most terrible and most successful gigs you ever played?
-In all honesty people usually just stand with their arms crossed and watch us. Someone told me once we have a “hypnotic” vibe, but on the few occasions that people have been rowdier at our shows it’s just a hell of a lot more fun, for me anyway. Looking out into the audience and seeing people having a great time, moving around, laughing, screaming or singing along makes me think “OK, we are all on the same vibe, let’s fucking party!” and leads to a very personally rewarding performance for me. When i look out and see non-moving faces I often just think “These people hate what we’re doing and can’t wait for it to be over.” I’d say our most terrible gig to date was when we were severely misplaced on a bill of hardcore/moshcore bands. When we played, we blew the power out at the venue. FIVE TIMES. It was embarrassing for us and the sound guy (who was very apologetic about the whole thing), and we ended up cutting our set short and the audience was not having our music OR the technical difficulties. I’d say one of our more successful shows was just a few weeks ago when we had the honor of opening for KYLESA. People were actually head banging, so I felt like we accomplished something.
Oh, shit! I know such gigs where good bands play as pathetic and solemn dudes just stay in a crowd with their hands crossed! Do not understand such shit at all… And what do you do visiting gigs of other bands? Do you do headbanging exercises, havoc and drive?
-When it's a friend's band or a band I enjoy, there's definitely head-banging and have a good time. I'm definitely past the age of stage diving or getting in mosh/circle pits - I like to be able to have a drink, bang my head, sing along, high-five my friends or bands, just have a good time without being too raucous. But that's just my perspective as a spectator. As a performer, of course I want to see people really releasing something out in the audience, go nuts!!
I don’t remember if I ever did an interview with band from Florida, so please can you tell us about local scene? You see, it’s for doommantia so “doom scene” would be more accurate term.
-There is definitely not a unified “doom scene” in Miami, and I would say Florida in general. There are bands scattered throughout the state that have similar musical ideals, but I would be hesitant to call it a “scene.” In our hometown shows, it is usually a mixed bag of people who at least like “heavy music,” in its most broad term. The bands here that have similar musical ground in the sludge/stoner/doom vein generally play shows together, but more often than not we are put on mixed bill shows instead of say a show of ONLY doom bands or ONLY sludge bands. There’s a great collective of bands that are working together to make people aware that there’s cool shit, music-wise, that’s happening down here. I’m hoping it can continue to pick up steam over the next year or so.
How does Shroud Eater help you in daily life besides outlet of boiling and mostly dark energy?
-It gives me an excuse and a reason to spend way too much money on guitars, amps, pedals and other music gear.
Okay, you already told us about Shroud Eater plans in our New Year interview so, Jean, just let me thank you for your time and company! I wish you and other Shroud Eaters all the best in 2012, so if you add few more words for our readers it would be suitable final of this interview. Good luck!
-Thank you and cheers to you all!!
Interview By Aleks Evdokimov
Tags: Shroud Eater