You can’t really see what something is in the moment, ever

Warbringer

Interview with John Kevil.

Thank you for taking the time to talk to us, how are things in your world?

Things are great, we have a little show tonight down in the local area, we're about to go do a west coast tour with Havok, and ExMortus, and the same line up in Europe.

So it's busy.

It's about to be, it's about to busy, the plane's just about to take off.

The calm before the storm!

Yeah, definitely. We're leaving today basically. I guess these interviews are a part of that.

Yeah, usually the first sign. A lot has happened in the last few years with Warbringer. How are the new band members working out at the moment?

It's great. We've only had the current line up for just around a year now. It's been great. Finally things are solid and dependable. That was really our problem, was getting any kind of lineup to stay. It set us back so many times, and it's just frustrating for me as hell. So, it's really good that we've had the stability with this group of musicians, and I think it will continue too, because we're extremely proud of the record we made and I think it'll do well. I think we have a chance on this record, to better than we've done before, and we're going to do everything we can. Hopefully, the metal community likes it to and we get the support we need to be more stable than we've been.

You absolutely have my support. I've been playing your new album Woe to the Vanquished, nonstop last week.

Killer.

That album is so fast, if you were to do cardio while listening to this album, it would kill you!

That's the idea man, we want it to be Really aggressive.

It shows. To me, this album is way more aggressive than your previous record in 2013. Was that on purpose?

Yeah, this album was deliberate because of certain things. Honestly, if you listen to all of that record from 2013, and you listen to the last song , there's some really aggressive stuff on there. The guitar tone, is a little less heavy than it should be on that record. Some of the songs, I wouldn't personally choose, to do again. And see, you can tell I didn't write them.  Anyway, this record, what we wanted to do, what our goal was, was to retain some of the melodic and progressive stuff that was cool on the last record, that did make it in there, and it made it different from other thrash records. I think the last record our goal was to say, if you're going to make a record, they'll say this sounds like Slayer, or this sounds like Overkill, or Testament,  if anyone says that, they're just wrong, you know  

You can kick em in the nuts, yeah.

If your Waking Into Nightmares and Worlds Torn Asunder, they have some stuff that the last ones didn't do, that makes it different, and I think there's stuff that us as a band sounds different.  But, we're still getting the review over and over again from a lot of journalists, and so on the 4th record, we were like fuck it, we're going to everything different and you still call us some rip off of old school, you're just not even paying attention. I think we went so hard in that direction, it's divisive  to our fan base. They're so frustrated that making records, improving as a band, and still coming off as if  we were just making our first record over and over. Our first record we made, Born to the Runs, was like the first song I ever wrote in my life, and some of the others, are the 3rd and 4th on there. So, I don't think the first album of ours, was necessarily that original, but I think very quickly after, a lot of distinctive features were added to Warbringer.

That's why Empires was such a left turn. We were trying to really show that, and just saying to everybody hey, we have our original ideas. This record, Woe to the Vanquished, in an attempt to do that, to be that, to not still be compared to the old band. Honestly, we want to make something that's way better than Metallica or Slayer, or Testament, or any of them. that they're making today. Because, if you ask me, I don't think there's no good music that's come out of there. I think, some of it is good. But, I don't think it's at all up to the standard that I'd like it to be.  

You have high standards.

I have high standards, we're in a style of music that has some really great records in it. A lot of them, made around the time I was born, but I don't care when they were made, I care about  if they're good, and I'm going to try to make the best  goddamn riff based aggressive music that I can. Woe to the Vanquished, is trying to get that combination of that aggression and progression, I guess. Where we want really brutal music that just blows your head off, and we're playing faster than any of the old bands at this point. We're more extreme than any of them are doing,  at this point.  

I think that's what Thrash should be, really heavy.

Yeah, me too. My favorite style of thrash, is like the very aggressive, very fast kind, We want to do that, but we also want to so want to bring musicality to it. We want melody in there, we want  all the speed and brutality to it. I put a lot of effort in having the lyrics have some power. So many times, in violent, aggressive music, you just have random descriptions of gore or something. I think it doesn't really have that much emotional impact because it's random. It's why you'll see a lot of work done on these subjects, and you know words, for Woe to the Vanquished, as well.

What I noticed, is that there's a lot of aggression in your poetic descriptions of violence in your lyrics. It's just the whole package.

That's the idea. I've been developing , as a writer, my whole career. Between the last record, I think that, on the last record, I did some really cool lyrics, but this one though, is the one I'm really proud of, because on this record, oddly enough, past member John Laux, who used to be my main avenue in the band, for getting my ideas in the music. Him and I, had a songwriting partnership, and we wrote a lot of the band's most popular songs, and so I was really worried about that, about losing that, but paradoxically, what actually happened, is when he left, it freed me up to do what I wanted.  Because something like the happy punk rock rocker stuff on the last record, that's his doing, and I was never really into that, and I was trying to make other people happy.

But, on this record, I just get to focus on making myself happy, because that's what you get to do, if you're pretty much if the sole remaining member is, you get to do what you want.  So, that's why we have this like epic fee and the military historical bend, and the more the thrash, slash, extreme metal sound, you know all those things were in the direction I wanted to take it in, and I really wanted to do it this time. And I'm  really happy.  The title, the cover, the lyrics and concept, all this is more me, I guess, than any record I've put out before.  

It's also really, really poetic, and it got me thinking, are you a big thinker?  

Yes, I'm not a poet, but I have a very overactive mind, and I have a fascination of history. I'm studying to be a professor, in which I'm like a third of the way through my bachelor's, so I still have a ways to go, but you know, I've put a lot of years into that, and it's what I talk about and study a lot, in my free time as well, instead of reality TV or important things like that, and these themes are such a natural fit to thrash metal because, in the kind of music we make, the sound is like angry and aggressive and brutal. So, you need a theme to fit that, and if you're talking about real world themes that do fit that, like warfare and suffering and strife in the world are the best things. If there's one thing you should be angry about, that's it.

You talk about violence in your lyrics, absolutely.

Yeah, and when it's real too, you can fill it with a kind of emotional power when it's real, because you can go beyond anger, you can get into sadness, bitterness, and loss, sense of betrayal, and all these things that I'm trying to evoke, on the record. that make it more emotionally powerful.

How do you feel about the state of the world we live in?

Oh, bad *laughs* In short, the US government, has not been on the right track, in my entire life, I believe. I think the world is the global imperialism thing that we've been doing since the Cold War, is not going to work in the long run, just like It didn't work for European powers, in the long run, and I'm studying a lot the whole 100 years leading up to the first World War, and I noticed certain parallels, the biggest of which, we just selected a really incompetent leader, basically, and a couple of the most historical incompetent leaders, were guys like Kaiser Wilhelm II and Tsar Nicholas. And look what happens when you put these incompetent people in charge, and there's actually a problem they have to deal with.

Yeah, it all falls apart.

So, I'm not the type of person that will tell you, I can predict what's going to happen now, but if you look at similar situations and see what the results are, you can make a pretty safe bet, I think.  You can make a pretty safe bet that having these leaders with their aggressive rhetoric, who don't seem to understand the issues they're actually dealing with, and their significance, and you can see how, in the past, how bad that is. The whole first World War, was basically avoidable, if we had better diplomats and better leaders than we did. And if there's no first World War, there's no Hitler, there's no Stalin, and In the second World War, there's no holocaust. There's none of that. So,  I think Donald Trump doesn't realize how important, the decisions he's making are, and that's scary.  

Scary times absolutely.

That fear, is expressed on the first song on this record, Silhouettes.

I kind of picked up on that.

With the technology, and the scale of civilization now, of 7 billion people, it's never been this big before. If civilization has a catastrophe, like it did in the World Wars, would be so much worse, just as the World Wars were so much worse as what came before, because of technology and scale of human civilization. If there was another today, those were beyond imagining, today, holy crap, I have no idea what you could even call it. But civilization, there's a real chance civilization can destroy itself, and that's not fantasy either, that's utterly, the sad reality.

We have the tools, yeah.

Therefore, we as humans, can no longer afford, to have the  same warfare,strife, just the endless back and forth of vengeance, and retribution, which has been going on for thousands of years. You just can't have that anymore, because the cost is now too high.

Extinction level events in the voting booth!

*laughs* Yeah, I guess. Pretty much, yeah. It’s possible. I really hope I’m wrong here, but the current state of the world doesn’t fill me with a lot of hope, and I think in both parts of Europe and in America, there’s a large movement to go back to some of these early 20th century social Darwinist ideas, the ideas that some people are better than others, basically.

The George Orwell-ish things. Animal Farm.

Yeah, all of those as well. Animal Farm? Usually people reference 1984. I’ve always been really fond of Animal Farm.

I love that book!

The thing people don’t know, socialism and communism are very bad words, but the thing that people don’t know is, the way it was supposed to go was with Leon Trotsky at it’s leader. And Leon Trotsky was in many respects a humanitarian in his thoughts. Especially when you compare him to the Tzar or something, you know?

Yeah, exactly. *laughs*

Yeah, but he gets an icepick to the back to the skull, and we get Stalin, who just uses the word Communism, because it’s the system in power, and he wants power.

I just re-read the book recently, and one sentence still sticks to me. All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

Yeah, and dude, if you think about it, that’s the same thing that’s been going on since ancient times. The Feudal era, with the peasantry and the nobility. In one view, this is one way of thinking about it, that I think has a lot of truth to it. Racism, the modern idea of racism is like some evolution of this whole idea of social hierarchy. The modern peasantry are the poor still, but you are further down the social ladder the darker your skin is. That’s been added like a justification for why societies have this hierarchical nature.

For some reason it always comes back to that. I don’t know why.

It does, right? Because the fundamental problem, the fundamental reason that there is large scale suffering in the world, is inequality of resources and opportunities. The whole reason anyone has ever fought a war, is to try to expand their own country, peoples, or even a set of people within their country, to expand their wealth and opportunities and power, in some way or the other.

Yeah, and with whatever means. Let’s get back to some happier stuff.

*laughs* yeah, now about guitars and shit!

*laughs* Exactly. What’s your favorite lyric on the new record?

I have a few. I really like the last lines in “When The Guns Fell Silent”. “Shellfire” has a few of them, I really like the second verse: “We obey our leaders, when they order the attack, with our honor and our glory, we live among the rats” *laughs*. I like that one, because it’s as if you get to keep your honor and glory, right? But every aspect of your life is a living hell, you know? That sort of idea. And the end verse in “Shellfire” too, the “I’m cast aside now that I’ve played my part”. It describes like, a soldier lying in the street and starving, pretty much. “Shellfire” was written about the first World War, and the mental stresses of the artillery and just the horror of it all. But that end part, I certainly had one eye on America, because I see a lot of homeless veterans. Which just shouldn’t exist, in any country that has any sense of morality.

Yeah. I agree. I really love the lyrics for “When The Guns Fell Silent”. It’s not every day that we see a song with lyrics in five acts *laughs*

*laughs* Yeah, I split it up like that. It draws on two different pieces of old literature too. The beginning, which is narrated by me, is by Siegfried Sassoon, a British warrior poet who wrote really depressing stuff, which I love. And the “We are the guns” section in the song is paraphrased from another soldier poet of the trenches, called Gilbert Frankau, who wrote this poem “The Voice Of The Guns”, which is cool because it’s written in all these biblical terms. It’s the guns, the artillery speaking to mankind, as if mankind is it’s servants. It’s awesome.

That sounds really cool.

Yeah. That’s the whole of “We Are The Guns”, like “Husbands or lovers, fathers or sons, we break them”. That whole bit *laughs*

Very awesome. Off topic, the whole album kind of reminded me of an old lyric I once wrote, part of it anyway, the line “Warmachines run on blood”.

Hmm hmm, yeah. Dude, the industrial world and machines has changed quite a bit about people. It’s very strange to think about, and I think about it a lot.

I can tell *laughs* It’s inspiring.

I think it’s important to do that, and I think today, in an increasingly empty world, where basically the main qualification for success is looking good in pictures that a lot of people like, you now? *laughs*

*laughs* With a duckface, of course.

Yeah, we brought it down to literally as dumb as it can get, or as dumb as it’s ever been at least. It’s funny, because that’s the result of all our amazing technology, people get dumber! That’s so backwards. For my small part, I want to do something against that. I’m one in seven billion, so I don’t think I can change it, but I don’t agree with the way society is going, and I want to say something about it. So part of just the approach on the record, and many things we do as a band, how all the instruments are real. Yes, that’s us actually playing, there’s no samples. We went to the studio, and apparently it’s common for bands to have the drummer only record his hands,and just program in all the kicks. We’re hearing this stuff, and we’re like, what?? You know? And just writing actual lyrics, and not taking them out of a can. Anyone can be like “devil’s chants of the beast of the night”, and that’s like 90% of Metal lyrics that you get! I like to think that we’re a smarter and better audience than that. I think Heavy Metal as a genre can tackle some stuff that other genres really can’t. Because you can do something like an eleven minute song about the sadness and emotional desolation at the end of the first World War in Metal. You can’t do that in like fucking Disco or Pop or whatever *laughs*.

Well, you have to condense it into 3 or 4 minutes, have one sentence repeating again, and again, and again *laughs*

Yeah. Just musical complexity. Lyrical complexity. Having real ideas. It goes back, it’s not just me. Writing this kind of stuff back when, was Iron Maiden. Maiden would write everyone of their songs practically as a concept piece about something, and their music would match it. “Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner”. Where are you? You are on a ship at sea. “Aces High”. Where are you? You’re Flying. “The Trooper”? You’re on a horse, you know? And all of these match the stories, which are all real world or literary, and I just thought this was really cool. They can really capture real things, with music! With bitching guitars too. *laughs*

Exactly! And you do it well too.

I love that about Metal. That’s something that always has been a real inspiration, and something we’ve been really able to accomplish on this record.

I agree, absolutely. You were originally known as Onslaught, but another band existed with that name, so you changed it. On your Wikipedia page it said that you landed on the name Warbringer after trying to compare several words with the prefix War. Then my mind just starts racing and I’m wondering, what were the other options? I like Warbunnies myself *laughs*

Oh *laughs*, no doubt. There’s a ton of them, as we found out. No, it was our first band dude! And we still get flagged over the Onslaught thing, even though we met Onslaught themselves and talked about this *laughs*. And they were like Yeah we were named after them, we ripped the name off from a Punk band, that’s what they said *laughs*. So, I thought that was funny. But when we came out, we got so much shit for this, because we didn’t already know who they were. And this is not like when we put out a record either. I am talking about when the band started, before we had written a song, we were called that. I always think that what this kind of exposed to me, is a silly attitude in the Metal community, where everybody is kind of supposed to be this walking encyclopedia about bands. And that’s not really important at all, in my opinion. Obviously we learned about Thrash Metal music as we got into it, because when we started Warbringer we weren’t even a Thrash Metal band. We didn’t really listen to Thrash Metal in the very early days, because all of us at that time were teenagers getting into Heavy Metal. We didn’t already know Heavy Metal, because no one had told us, you know? It wasn’t popular where we were from, or with anyone we knew.

You were learning as you went along, yeah.

Yeah as we went on. And now I know a good amount about Heavy Metal, and if there’s something good that I haven’t heard, that I’m missing out on, great! I’m glad there’s something else left for me to hear, that I haven’t already heard, you know? *laughs*

Yeah. Did you actually start appreciating the original Onslaught as well? *laughs*

Oh yeah, we’ve toured with them twice, actually, and I particularly like The Force. The high vocals rule.

Your rise to power, it’s been a fast one. Especially once you were picked up by Century Media. So how do you look back at the last 13 years?

Well, let’s see. It’s been quite a while now. It’s been 13 years since I started the band in a garage somewhere, since we were Onslaught. Thirteen years, yeah. I don’t know, it’s been a crazy ride and I can’t believe it’s been that long, really. I never saw any of this coming, and I’m really glad that we made it, and that we are putting out this record and the proudest of this one. Between the last record and this, there is a huge gap. I had to remake the band twice and it was an extremely personally difficult time for me. The band had been my whole life and when I didn’t have it for 3 years, that was pretty rough. I was really worried that I wouldn’t be able to put out new music that I liked as much as our old music, but I put out something that I like much better. I like our old records, but this is the first record that I love, that we’ve made. I’m really proud to say that.

That is something to be really proud of, absolutely.

Like our other records, whenever we made them, I would listen to them for maybe like a couple of weeks, and then practically never again. Just to go back now and then, but this one I’ve actually listened to, since we made it, just to enjoy it. I really love it, and sometimes I’m able to disconnect from myself and just hear it, which I like! *laughs* It’s very tough for me to do usually, because I’m so critical of our own work. I think it’s necessary for us to put out music of the kind of quality we are trying to.

I absolutely agree with you. I’ve got it on my phone and I’ll be listening to it multiple times in the upcoming week at least.

Fuck yeah!

As I said, it’s great for doing cardio *laughs*

Oh yeah, we don’t slow down too much.

Yup, just keep paddling.

Well, you’ll notice the first half of the album, songs one through five, it’s just non stop aggression. We really wanted it to open that way. We wanted the record to hit you and scorch the hair off your head pretty much, you know? But we don’t want it to be all one thing. We want to show that we are an ambitious band with the right. So that’s where the second half of the album comes in and basically that’s the theme for how the record is supposed to feel as a whole. It opens up with this crazy intense aggression, and then settles down in kind of this like more contemplative desolation I guess. That’s epitomized in the last song, which I think is something really new for us.

It’s different, but it’s great. Absolutely.

It’s my favorite one!

Same here!

Yeah, I think you can’t do a song like that on every record, or all the time, but I had this idea. It was from a couple of years of personal study on this subject, which I find so fascinating. I probably want to teach this subject at some point because I here in America it’s vastly under known and needs to be known, because it’s really important. I really wanted to put that into a song and just go all out and make a huge long concept piece. Our musical inspirations for this were stuff like Iron Maiden’s epic songs, Metallica’s epic songs, particularly in the “...And Justice For All” era, and then like Bathory. The “Viking” era and the big songs on “Blood Fire Death”. All of those went into the musical feeling here, and i think you can kind of hear where we are coming from. But it’s a different approach for us for a song, and yeah. It’s cool. It’s kind of like more Heavy Metal at that point than Thrash, because that song includes some elements from Heavy-, Black and Thrash Metal I’d say.

Yeah. Professor Kevill tells a story!

*laughs* Yes, seriously though. I’m thirty now, I’ve been doing for ten years and I want my work to show it.

And it does! On your Facebook page we see that you are promoting a new band called Cultural Warfare. I think it’s really cool that you do this. Do you promote lesser known bands more often?

Well basically, our manager Marco runs a company, where he promotes a lot of like underground Thrash Metal bands, and just Heavy Metal. And so, a lot of times, since he has been our manager from the start, bands like these end up on shows with us, and thus we promote. Because, you know, I don’t think Heavy Metal is the exclusive property of huge names that came around 30 years ago. I think there really needs to be a greater support of new and upcoming bands, because otherwise, what we are looking at in ten more years, is a dead genre. Heavy Metal is too good for that, it doesn’t deserve to be a dead genre. It still is awesome, and deserves to be made. I’ll never change my believe in that.

I absolutely agree with you. That’s why I pointed it out, I think it’s really great that you’re doing this.

We are not the only ones. I hope that before they retire, that the older guard of Metal sees what’s going on here, with resurgence of riff-based aggressive music, and starts supporting these kinds of acts. Avenged Sevenfold and Volbeat, they don’t need anyone’s support, they are doing fine, because radio Rock never had a problem selling. But Heavy Metal does. Heavy Metal needs a little support. Even for the original generation of Thrash Metal bands to break, and have the success that they had, they got support from the generation before them. Such as Metallica’s 1986 tour with Ozzy Osbourne, which was a pretty big deal, you know? I feel like if we can get one big thing like that, it would help us so much, but I feel like the upper echelons of the old Thrash Metal genre don’t seem to be aware that anyone’s playing this music today.

Yes, it’s very difficult to get through to those circles, we also notice that as a magazine. To get through to the bigger labels even, it is hard.

Yeah, it’s funny. I would think that if I were in Metallica, or Slayer, or whatever, that records like “Woe To The Vanquished” or “Nightmare Logic” or “Conformocide” or “Terminal Redux” would make me say oh shit, here’s a new band, we should promote this, this is new vital Metal coming out! I don’t know, perhaps there, that’s what you see what people really value. Dollars or music, you know?

Yeah, perhaps. And perhaps they just live in a shielded community and don’t see over the fence. Who knows?

Yeah. It’s really frustrating too. These same guys that don’t know that bands like us exist, come out and say oh, there’s nothing good coming out in Metal today. Well, shit. There’s records better than what you’re putting out! You should probably bother to know about them before you say that.

There is a lot of good stuff, I agree.

There really is, because there is so much Metal coming out today. It’s so much easier to record a band. The Barrier to record a professional sounding record is so much lower, and because of that, there is so much more music coming out. Not all of it sucks, it’s very good.

It’s bigger than ever, and it’s everywhere!

Yeah, and I think that since we all love Heavy Metal, everyone reading this probably does, that’s what we should do for our own genre to survive. We can’t keep worshipping… I had another interviewer that said like “So here’s a hot topic in Thrash Metal bands at the moments, what do you think of Slayer”. And I’m like, this is a hot topic?? We are talking about a band who put out their definitive releases before I could speak! And now I’m 30! *laughs*

So, what do you think of Slayer *laughs*

Well, currently? Okay, I guess I’m glad it exists still. I think they have on their recent record some songs I consider up to standard, but I’m a cheeky bastard and I don’t think that the Slayer, Megadeth or whatever around today is as good as the one that once existed, that made the records that drew me into this genre. Honestly, goddammit, that’s the truth. No one says it, because we have this reverence for the past in Heavy Metal. In some ways that’s good, because there is a lot of tradition and great music in this Genre, that deserves to not be forgotten, because it’s great.

Absolutely.

I really believe that. But on the other hand, you can’t just worship the same thing forever, or what you get is a dead genre.

I agree with you there.

You can keep loving the exact same records, but you can’t write off every new record that comes in, because it’s not “Reign in Blood” or “Master Of Puppets”.

We have to find a good balance there, absolutely.

Yeah, and a realistic, merit based appraisal of new bands. Not, can it create the same historical impact that “Rust In Peace” did or whatever, you know? Because we cannot even see that today. There may be… And fuck, if we supported some of these new bands, perhaps some of them would move into that classic status in the future, and we need that to happen to, if not us, to somebody. Somebody good has got to wave the flag, and they need to be given that flag by the Heavy Metal community. But right now the Heavy Metal community figuratively speaking keeps flying the flag of thirty years ago.

It’s a classic now, but was it already a classic when it came out?

Well, right! I just happen to think, when we were talking about the broader sphere, because Thrash Metal didn’t exist before they did right, when you look at the broader sphere of music I guess… If you see someone like starting to play a piano today, you won’t tell them “You are never going to write Beethoven’s ninth symphony, you should fucking give up poser, ripoff!”, but we get that kind of shit all the time! We’ve lived under it our entire career. Other genres of music don’t do this to their new artists, you know?

It’s a strange thing, yeah. We have a high set bar, absolutely.

And what I think is funny too, is how the Metal community at the exact same time period, basically wrote off and shunned the new Thrash band as being this derivative thing, but meanwhile embraced anything seventies retro.

*laughs* Yeah.

I’m just scratching my head at this point. *laughs* So if you play and sound kind of like Slayer or something, you are a derivative rip-off , but if you sound like Black Sabbath with more modern vocals or like hip, modern tattoo guy, beard guy vocals, then you’re new and original? Like, come on! I think our songs are more original than a lot of this seventies retro stuff coming out. We’ve got “When The Guns Fell Silent”, we’ve got all this kind of stuff that pretty much stands on it’s own, and I hope that this record is the one where that perception of us can change.

Let’s talk about this record again in five to ten years and see how it did! *laughs*

*laughs* I hope so, you know? Ten years later is when you can actually tell what something was. You can’t really see what something is in the moment, ever.

You’re too close to it. Yeah. You guys have been playing all over the globe already, so I was wondering, what are your favorite tour memories?

Oh, there’s a ton. I really enjoyed, in 2013 we went to Athens and I just had a great day. The show was amazing, I had never been to Greece before. You know, I love a lot of history and mythology and stuff, so I was going to the top of the Acropolis and I thinking oh yeah. Socrates and Pericles were walking around where I’m standing right now. So I stood at the side of the Acropolis and looked up over the sea, and I shouted as loud as I could “I’m in the land of the ancient Gods!”. That’s one of my best memories *laughs*.

That is an awesome thing! *laughs* I can actually see you standing there now.

Well, now I’m just on my porch, I don’t know if there’s too many ancient Gods here in Los Angeles.

Well, ancient Rock Gods! Yeah, didn’t Lemmy have a favorite bar there?

Dude, my favorite bar is the grocery store. I buy a large pack of beer and go to my house *laughs*. That’s my favorite. I am kind of a hermit. All the social party stuff, I get more of that than I can handle, being in music. So, when I’m at home I’m surprisingly anti-social.

We all need to retreat a bit and find our own every now and then, so that’s good.

Yeah. I like people, I just, you know, I can only handle so much of them *laughs*.

I can relate to that *laughs*. Where will we be able to see you on tour this year?

Yeah, where exactly are you calling me from? Because I can tell you if we’re there or not.

I live in the Netherlands myself, but our readers are all over the place. We have them in the US, all over Europe, Canada even, so…

Okay, well we are touring all those places in the year. We have a lot of European dates announced for April already, with Havok and Ex Mortis, in about a week we are playing the West Coast in the US and Vancouver, Canada. There will be a US tour announced for May and June that is coming up, and we are also playing festivals in Europe this summer. So if you want to see Warbringer, you can! We will be there.

Do you happen to play Graspop by any chance?

No, I don’t think so.

That’s a shame.

I think that before we get on as many festivals as we like.. We’re kind of coming back out of the darkness here. What I hope is that when the record comes out, suddenly a lot of people will take notice, and we can put together a really strong summer run. But right now, it’s a little spotty. I don’t know if they’ll be able to fill it in.

I hope so as well. I’d love to see this stuff live man!

Oh yeah, absolutely. And by the summer we might be playing the whole record actually. That’s something we’ve been talking about, but doing the last song live will be a bit of a challenge, but I can’t not do that one live. I’ve got to do that one. I think at some point, by the end of the year, we will have a set where we just play the whole new record and a selection of other stuff. Right now, I think the set’s more evenly spread and we’re pretty much just playing through the whole side A of the new record.

Well if you do decide to go for the whole record show, try to fit in a Dutch show, for I’d love to see that man *laughs*

Oh yeah. I think we might be doing that around the end of our tour, around the end of this year. Especially if the record as well received as I hope it is, then definitely. Our last record was four years ago now, and we really want to showcase the strength of our new music, and our current line up and our current musicians and everything. A lot of people with us, for whatever reason, our first album still got the most exposure, and most people seem to know it. I think that’s kind of funny, because I think we got better on the subsequent ones quite a bit *laughs*. I really hope that this one comes out and we can show people. The first record was really a youthful energy kind of thing, and there’s something to that, it’s a lot of fun I think, but on this one it’s a whole different thing. There’s a degree of professionalism and musicianship and songwriting that we just couldn’t bring before, and I hope people recognize it.

Yeah. You really come bursting out of the dark with a bang! People will notice.

Well, I’m glad you like it. It’s pretty much the reaction I’m hoping for. I’m really anxious, we’ve had it recorded since October, so I’ve been sitting on this since forever *laughs*. It’s really exciting to finally get some feedback from people that heard it as well.

Exactly, I get that. That leads us to our last question and that’s, do you have any last words for our readers?

Well, thanks for listening, thanks for hanging out and continue to support and listen to the music we believe in. Loud and proud, regardless of which way society or culture goes, it doesn’t mean that’s a good way. Go your own way and do what you believe in and what is right.  Keep it Metal and play it loud.

Wise words, absolutely. Thank you very much for your time, I had a great time talking to you!

Thanks, you too man, I really appreciate it and I hope I’ll see you on tour!

Randy Gerritse