Friday, August 1, 2014

The King Is Blind Interview

1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?
Lee James Appleton (Guitars): We are The King Is Blind, 4 musicians from East Anglia. We are on a mission to bring back some of the lost ingredients of Extreme Heavy Metal; groove, hooks, melody, power, atmosphere and most importantly, emotion.

2.So far you have released a demo and an ep, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on both of the recordings and also how do they differ from each other?
The demo was recorded before we had a full line up in place. 'The Deficiencies Of Man' EP is a group effort with everyone getting involved in composing the songs. The EP is faster and more aggressive, probably because we were unleashing a lot of pent up emotion as we were writing. ‘A Thousand Burning Temples’ was written in our first rehearsal, purely because we were so excited to be in the room together.

3.I have seen the band labeled as 'monolithic metal' can you tell us a little bit more about this tag?
“Monolithic Metal” is basically us mucking around with the concept of 'tags'. No band worth their salt spends more than 5 minutes thinking about that stuff anyway, life's too short. I remember being in Salisbury Cathedral thinking 'I want our music to sound like this cathedral looks!" That's as much as I personally thought about it.

4.The band members are veterans that have also been a part of a few legendary bands, what is it that motivates you to create heavy music after all of these years?
We're only in our 30s, we're not that old! It's a more focused level of aggression these days. I've got more to lose now than I did in my teens, hence I’m willing to go a lot further if we come up against obstacles. Our vitriol is pointed at only very specific targets these days, rather than scatter bombing everything that moves!

5.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
Steve Tovey (Vocals / Bass): Just like the music and journey of a song is a narrative, or a movement, for me, lyrically, it’s important to have that same dynamic bent, to have that expansion and natural progression of a theme. Some, like ‘Thorns That Pierce The Skull’, are linear stories around events, or perceived events, others, like ‘A Thousand Burning Temples’ are more conceptual. In each case it’s about a balance of metaphor and narrative and telling a story that takes the listener from origin to devastation. 

6.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'The King Is Blind'?
Lee: It's actually an old song-title from when I was playing clubs in Cambridge a few years ago. I always liked it; I thought it had a cool Brendan Perry vibe. When we started thinking of band names we didnt have too many options. Plague Pit was our early name I came up with; Steve humoured me for a few weeks before stamping that one out… fair enough really. The band name also works as a rather straightforward political, religious or societal statement, none of which require elaboration.

7.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Mostly quite good venues so far. We're playing the Arts Centre in Colchester on Thursday which is the best venue in our area, by a long way.

8.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
As I say, we're playing at the Colchester Arts Centre on 7th Aug, Bloodstock festival on 9th August. Bloodstock represents a landmark moment for this band and for us as musicians. We're looking forward to that one. We're also booked to play Hammer fest next year in March and Candlemass have just confirmed so I'm excited about that.

9.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?
We currently have a deal with Mordgrimm to release our material. We have a relationship with Frater Nihil that goes back 20+ years from when Paul was in Cradle of Filth, so it's the perfect home for us at this point in time, as Nihil knows exactly what he's doing with a new band like us.

10.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of death and doom metal?
We've had great feedback from all around the world, but you never really know how you're doing until you get out there, play in these places and see the whites of the crowd's eyes.

11.What is going on with some of the other bands or musical projects that some of the band members are a part off?
Everybody is involved in projects outside of TKIB, it doesn't infringe on the band at all. We've known each other for long enough not to feel threatened by stuff like that.

12.When can we expect a full length album and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
We're writing it now. It’s a huge artistic leap from what we've done thus far and quite a risk, but we have a huge amount of ideas that we are not going to hold back on. I think it’s going to be an important album, very much inspired by ‘Into The Pandemonium’. We should be doing some pre-production in the later part of the year in time ready to record in early next year. We have some very exciting options available to us in terms of studio and producer too.

13.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
We're all music addicts, we can never get enough, so there are hundreds of seminal bands who inspire us to exist and to play. I won’t speak for the other guys but personally older stuff like Candlemass, Celtic Frost and VoiVod as well as some of the UK bands in the early 90s UK scene like Cathedral, Godflesh, Bolt Thrower, PL and My Dying Bride. Outside of metal, Killing Joke, Dead Can Dance, Godspeed and Pink Floyd are what Im into. I like the latest Ulver record too. To be honest, incorporating non-Metal influences is where the magic happens and is what gives you a unique identity if done properly. That's exactly what we intend to do.

14.What are some of your non musical interests?
My family and my work take up my time when I'm not doing music.

15.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
No. Thank you for the chance to talk to you about our music.

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