Being in a metal band in 2015 is a tough old bastard. Not only are you more likely to make a decent wage working in a branch of Lidl (although that “jest” doesn’t work as I’ve heard their salaries are actually really rather competitive), but everywhere you look there’s a metal band ready to spring their YEEOWWs on you!
Buying some groceries?…take down a box of cereal which creates a hole so you can see into the next aisle? METAL BAND! Quick trip to the hairdresser, look in the mirror over your shoulder? METAL BAND! Brisk walk in the rolling Chilterns, “ooh what’s that over there by that bushel?”… It’s only another fucking METAL BAND!
The thing is, I don’t actually mind the abundance of metal bands, the more the better I say…BUT, the point is, it’s now harder than it has ever been to stand out from the pack…so when I come across a band that DOES poke their head above the parapet, I get very excited…like mozzarella sticks, excited!!
SICK! Moving, crushingly heavy, technically prolific….and metal as BALLS.
So I could go off on a beautifully-worded tirade about why these guys are so different and unique, I could disappear up my own journalist asshole and use words such as “vital” and “crucial” and make everyone think I’m so intelligent, while I secretly cry into a pseudo-intellectual pillow of solitude and self-loathing…BUT WHY BOTHER, when I can just reach into the bands mouth and extract that information that-a-way…?! (Lazy)…
GUYS! First things first, what do you think it is about your sound that makes you different from the pack of metal bands out there at the moment?
To be honest I think that is because all of our members come from different musical backgrounds and enjoy a vast spectrum of music, is how we’ve came out with something that would be described as “Contemporary” and “Unique” by the man himself Alex Baker. If anything, it proves that musical boundaries shouldn’t exist whilst writing heavy music, write the music YOU like, I never understood why people write music or be in bands just because it’s the new “Popular” thing or there’s suddenly a wild new genre everyone is following… Fuck that? Listen and write what the hell you want, regardless if your class mates are giving you grief about what’s coming out of your headphones, or your if music teacher tells you it’s “Inaudible” or your Dad tells you to “Turn that racket down!” Music is an art that gives a sense of freedom to its writer or even a listener that may be able to relate to what a musician or band is trying to express (which is a bloody good feeling!).
One thing that sticks out most for me about Guardian is that the since the concept of the very first track, we will always have complete creative control over our sound production and engineering as everything has been recorded, mixed and mastered completely independently (so far!). So as you can imagine we’ve crafted our own little techniques here and there over the years as Cory has studied in University for three years doing a Music Technology BSc where he learnt a lot about recording/mixing/mastering and Zac decided it would be way more beneficial as a musician to spend some money on a set of recording gear that would come in use whenever we needed rather than spending heaps on recording every time we wanted too. So all of this contributed to creating the sound of this record.
You are riff machines. What is the greatest riff in the history of man (and woman)? It’s totally fine to say one of your own, we won’t judge you…(we might)….
This is the hardest question to answer by far. As I only joined Guardian and met the guys in August/September last year (2014), I’ve had quite a different metal background to them so I’m sure we’re all gonna differ on this answer. I feel like I need to give some credit to the heavy music that got me off when I was younger and got me into metal. Even though I’m not as much of a thrasher any more I can’t not mention exodus at all. Fabulous disaster as a track and album is so fucking energetic that it still makes me want to run in circles in my bedroom, as does their entire discography (minus shovel headed, sorry rob, exhibition a-b are sick), but for the stand alone riff that will never ever get old, for me, has to be slaughter of the soul. It is literally impossible to not suddenly forget the whereabouts of your shit when the main riff kicks in. The whole song is written in a way that you feel as if the same riff is playing throughout even though it changes completely at each given moment if you know what I mean, the whole song is just a riff in itself. Standalone greatest metal track ever if you ask me (just kidding, its innovate, obvs). – Josh
I’ve been literally stewing on this question for weeks; you haven’t half picked an insanely hard question for us here! In turn though, I’ve been retracing my steps and listening to loads of music recently that I’ve discovered over the years in order to try actually pick something from my very roots! I’ve got a rough idea of what the other lads or more than likely going to pick, so I’m going to obviously be the one to pick something from the newer generation that I probably discovered 7 or eight year ago when I was about around the age of 13-14 and I discovered like, really fucking heavy music for the first time. It’s really hard for me not to pick a Parkway Drive song as all of their songs are incredible but it would be just to predictable, but Winston McCall’s voice definitely made me want to scream that’s for absolute fucking certain aha! Anyway, we’re talking about riffs here and a stand-alone song that is breath taking from start to finish is a song from an album called An Ocean Between us by As I Lay Dying. Touchy subject maybe? Tough shit. Good musicians deserve credit where credit is due, and “Forsaken” will forever be one of my favourite songs. The chord intro is just so expressive and the build up on the toms into that destroyer of a fast riff is just fantastic, it instantly gives you an idea of how tight these dudes really had to be, the fills the drummer uses still amaze me every time I hear them. All of the riffs on that album man, ridiculous solos flying out from everywhere, technical as hell grooves, tapping for days, sick harmonies (even vocally). Everything I love in music! – Matthew
The second I read this question I thought for certain that I would answer with a Pantera riff, but the more thought I put into it, the harder it became too just choose one single riff, simply because every single Pantera riff is better than anything anyone else has ever wrote… Ever. Therefore would be physically impossible too choose just one of Dimebags almighty grooves. However, the riff/track I’m going to say is my favourite is wrote on the behalf of the late great Dimebag himself. Well, its wrote in spite of a disgusting article wrote by a selfish, insensitive c**t. The track “Aesthetics of Hate” performed by Machine Head spoke volumes, not just for me but for the entire metal community. Robb put into words the feelings and emotion that I personally felt after reading the article, so its not just the opening riff that grabs me by the balls every time I hear it, the lyrics speak to me in a way that no other song ever has (expect the lyrics in Hope, one of our songs. Don’t judge me too hard) also, it would be impossible to pick a single riff from “Aesthetics of Hate” because have you heard that solo section? If you haven’t, stop reading this and check it out right now and prepare too shit yourself. – Zac
The new album is called Revolution. Why? Have you got revolutionary spirits? Would you take to the streets to overthrow a government if they did something shitty?…well….more shitty…overly shitty…
The new album is called Revolution for a number of reasons, mainly because of the awful state our beautiful planet is in and how the corruption and hypocrisy of the ruling elite is just blindly accepted in modern day society, BUT, it’s also called Revolution as the words definition can also be depicted to describe a sense change. As a band and on personal levels, we’ve definitely faced a lot of that over these last years.
Since we first set out to start a band we wanted it to also be a platform to convey a message we strongly believe in, one which spoke in favour of promoting peace and a unified human race, against the immoral, corrupt, corporate powers that try to control us an turn us against one another. What can we say? We’re open-minded hippies at heart! (Not all of us smell I promise)! Many musicians have used their art to convey such messages and we want to be a band that follows a similar path in shining a light on the many humanitarian issues around the globe currently being ignored by the mass media.
Although, due to many social activists highlighting recent events and showing a repetition of what we’ve already seen throughout history, a greater number of the population are rapidly coming to the realisation that despite their well tailored words, the intentions of our political leaders are mainly self serving and for the most part, completely morally fucked. The BBC and many other ‘new sources’ would of course say differently but they’ve been proven to use their massive social influence to always further bigger agenda.
What’s the track on the album that you just cannot wait for people to hear/the one that means most to you guys (and what’s it about/why?)
Surprisingly, one of the ones I wasn’t so sure I would like as much upon first hearing it, but that was way back after the Europe tour when I was way less open-minded. Nomadic! Oh man, this song speaks volumes to me personally and it’s a song that reflects the lyrics perfectly, Matty’s put a lot of himself into them and it really shows. I’ll let people read them and forge their own opinions but it’s definitely my favourite song to play at the moment. The song speaks of a journey that in my eyes, a journey that hasn’t even properly started for us as a band. BUT It starts when we absolutely smash the album release show at Newcastle o2 Academy and it will continue for us, individually and collectively, until we literally can’t go anymore, which is going be a long ass time. In regards to other people hearing it, fucking hell, it’s sick, if there’s a song in our set that’s gonna make me properly mash my china up, it won’t be one of the clearly labelled ‘heavy’ ones, it’s Nomadic. And that build up with the scream after the rim clicky bit, fuck! Man, that fills gonna be all like, bambambamBAMBAMBAMBAMBAM SHUGGADUGGADUGGADAGGATINGATINGADAGGADUGGABAMBAMBAMBAM. – Josh
Ahhhhhhh damn! Josh picked it first! I was totally going to say Nomadic… but where would be the fun in me choosing the same? Although I really do love the clean drop out in that song, for me musically and lyrically together, it would have to be Ambivalence. Years ago, before even having the slightest clue me Zac and Cory would even be in a band together some time later, I distinctly remember hearing some sections from that song recorded on Cory’s mac and absolutely loving them as they stood out and reminded me of the good ol’metalcore I love so much (August Burns Red/Parkway Drive). Anyway 3 years or so later down the line, it’s time for me to write lyrics over it… I can’t really be arsed to tell a sob story because it doesn’t involve the most positive lyrics haha, but it fit because at the time I had a lot to vent about… in short It was wrote about some family stuff that I had to endure and how I had to leave what WAS my family home. I really poured my heart into this song so I hope people check it out! In my opinion, out of all the tunes on the album, this song has one of the nicest guitar solos and rhythm sections, I don’t mean to be bias but every time I listen to it, it really does raise the hairs on my neck. Good Job Zac and Cory! *Applauds* – Matthew
Zac – I think the track I want people to hear the most is “Politics” purely because it is lyrically one of the most truthful things I have wrote. It really doesn’t take an idiot too realize, no matter who we vote into power, we are still going to be fucked by the government just as hard as the last puppet in charge did too us unless there is a vast change. I mean the problems within the country that my grandparents went through and educated me about are still happening today. I don’t want too go into too much detail about my opinion on the matter, as there isn’t enough tin foil for us all to make hats however I will say, if you are an open minded citizen and sick of living in fear of a modern day western dictatorship, you will love the entire album’s concept. Even if you despise metal, give the lyrics a read and I’m sure you will agree on at least a couple of the touchy subjects we brush up on. – Zac
It has to be Deliverance for me. Much like a story I think Deliverance moves forward and builds upon each section before hand and progresses towards an ending highpoint. It basically alludes to the story that’s been told before of trying to grit your teeth through hardship before realizing the pain can be taken away by accepting what’s to come. I think the song has some obvious influences from which we’ve talked about prior with bands like As I Lay Dying and Parkway Drive, all bands that we grew up listening to. Much like Ambivalence as Matty mentioned, Deliverance features sections of previously demo’d riffs, I love using these because it shows that the ideas you have which at one point you think are throw-aways can really bring light to a section, or riff. I think out of all the songs on the album this song had the most spontaneous work, whereby Zac and I would be jamming it, hear something in our heads and immediately be on the same wavelength to add new textures to parts and interesting phrases in guitar and vocals, and for that the song turned out absolutely killer! – Cory
You seem like simply lovely chaps…where does the inspiration come from to make music that’s so crushingly badass?
If you haven’t realised already, we’re pretty down to earth chilled guys… Until something shitty happens regarding the band/ a member or even something shitty that is happening in the world that affects more than just ourselves. In which case we become rather outspoken and intolerant to take shit from anybody. Not to be a negative Nancy, as much as we absolutely adore Guardian, sometimes being in a band isn’t all fun and games; you can probably vouch for that yourself Alex! But this album is a big foundation in our careers as it is bursting with topics, emotions, passion and determination. Everything we’ve had to face, succumb and grow from is intertwined and funnelled into the entirety of Revolution, which is consequently where our inspiration has come from.
Best film of all time? (And why)
I don’t watch films a great deal anymore but one that had a huge impact on me was “The Blues Brothers”. I used to watch it almost every weekend when I was younger. The soundtrack to that film was my real introduction to some amazing funk, blues, and soul music and gave my listening some variety at a time where everything else I listened to was either thrash, death, or something Viking themed. Its also fucking hilarious, when all the cop cars fly over the edge of the motorway and john candy’s car gets stuck in the side of that truck, fuck sake. – Josh
Growing up as a kid, movies and new releases were always a big thing; I’m not so big on them anymore. I rarely watch TV if I’m honest! I could literally go on for paragraphs and paragraphs about my all time favourites. But one that really stuck out for me and will always be my favourite is “Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels”! It’s such a diverse plotline that you can really indulge in, especially if you’ve never seen it before as for a first time viewer, the punch line is what would be described as a “Wtf moment”. Three reasons why you should watch it if you haven’t, with out any spoilers! 1. The two Scouse burglars are fucking hilarious and worth watching it for! 2. It’s an incredibly pieced together film. And 3. It’s fucking hysterical!! – Matthew
THE FORCE AWAKENS. Kylo Ren is such a badass and I love how he just loses his shit so many times unlike the cool and calm Darth Vader… I also love the fact Kylo has basically broken every Star Wars fans heart, although you appreciate that what happened, had to happen. I mean, who doesn’t secretly love the dark side of the force? Jedi’s are way too P.C (watch south park season 19) and far too obeying for my liking. I think the reason I held off answering this question for so long is because I knew that it would instantly become my all time favourite movie even though I’ve only had the luxury of seeing it at the movies once so far… However, before The Force Awakens blew my mind, I was going to choose Snatch, absolute British classic and if you haven’t seen it then “put the fucking kettle on” watch it maybe 5 times? Then go see the new Star Wars. – Zac
Scarface. Movie making at it’s finest. It has one of the best lead actor roles of all time, played by the most badass ever to grace the big screen. It revolutionized method acting, the role belonged to Pacino, he took all the emotion (Good and bad) that surrounded the character and played it to perfection. It’s one of the original ruthless business movies, if you need something? Take it. It won’t get done for you, sitting on your ass won’t get you it! I respect that sentiment. Aside from all the corruption and alienation of his family and friends, Montana knew how to get the job done. – Cory
So there we have it, what a lovely bunch of dudes. Don’t let their clever words fool you though, these guys are heavier than finding out your sister is actually your mum on a particularly brutal episode of Jeremy Kyle…
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