What Would Lemmy Do

The Darkhorse

Tell us a bit about The Darkhorse. Who are you and what do you play?

The Darkhorse are a four piece doom and sludge inspired band from Wellingborough, Northants.

Captain Sludge – if you strip the songs down and slow them down they are very doom heavy, it’s just we kind of get a little bored playing slower songs on stage, so the songs have got progressively faster, giving the fans a high energy show yet still keeping those doom/stoner/sludge riffs we all love. In this quartet I perform the role of Capt. Sludge, bringing 5 strings of bass tremors.

Spalders – I’m Spalders and I’m Rhythm/lead guitarist and back-up vocals 

Baz -. My names Baz I’m the singer and guitarist in The Darkhorse. We have been around now for just over a year. We try to incorporate a lot of different styles in our sound from doom and sludge to black metal.

You’re a relatively young band. Yet you already took the stage at the Bloodstock festival. How did that come to be?

Captain Sludge – We entered Bloodstock’s infamous metal 2 the masses (M2TM) competition in which we reached the final. On the night we weren’t picked as the best band but were still spotted by Simon Hall of Bloodstock who asked us to play the Jägermeister Stage. We feel to this day this was a better located stage, situated right between the main stag and the second stage allowing us to grab the attention of passing traffic. Added to that we were given a prime slot on a Saturday afternoon right before the mighty ‘Crowbar’

Spalders – We took a chance with playing the legendary M2TM and ended up on the Jägermeister stage just before crowbars main stage set, was a absolutely amazing experience and getting to meet Kirk after will stick with me forever! 

Baz– Technically we are a young band but we’ve been in bands for many years.
Bloodstock came about through M2TM. And I think one of the main reason was because we’re such an energetic band.
We don’t like stagnant bands that just stand around and expect the crowd to move. We see things as you earn respect by respecting the audience. And I think crowds see this. Plus we write amazing songs that are riff driven

How does it feel to be on stage in front of a festival audience?

Spalders – The surge of adrenaline is just indescribable, just all the metal heads banging their heads in unison is a moving experience, like a giant family! 

Baz – It feels natural really. We gig a lot and the shows are well rehearsed. We know what we’re doing up there. The main thing I try to remember is looking people in the eyes. It doesn’t matter how far away they are. Just keep eye contact.
Captain Sludge – It feels right at home; you always have this dream of playing to a major festival crowd and did it. On what we feel is one of the best UK festivals out there. We hope to be invited back to play again in 2016.

What do you prefer personally, the “up close and personal” of a club gig or the “sea of people” experience of a festival?

Captain Sludge – I like the challenge of a festival, most of the people at a festival are there for the headliners, I see them as more of a challenge because most people don’t know you or have ever heard any of your stuff before. I have full faith in the music we produce and our live performance that we can win them over and gather a bigger fan base in which to proceed further with the band

Spalders – Personally I love festivals, the mix of different genres and the whole vibe 

Baz – As long as people are losing their minds and having a great time that’s all that matters to me. It doesn’t matter where we play

What are your songs about? Where do you find your inspiration?

Baz – We’ve just finished recording an album actually. 
A lot of the theme of the album comes from horror films but also today’s society. Government control and the way people suffer.
Is there a cure for cancer?  Probably will politicians line their pockets before it gets to the people?  Definitely.
“Control the masses and they will consume” is a great quote to describe the society we live in.
The end is just round the corner. We may as well embrace it.

Captain Sludge – Sabbath! That’s black Sabbath by the way haaahaa. No seriously thou we have so many musical influences ranging from Will Haven and Deftones through to Conan and Windhand, although the music we produce are very much like eyehategod / Superjoint / crowbar. We take on board everything and they all inspire us to want to be as good as they are.

Your EP “A Badge of Dishonour & Discomfort” is available on Spotify and Soundcloud as of this year. What can you tell us about the songs on this release?

Spalders – Pure headbanging riffs! With added beard!! 

Baz – A Badge of Dishonour and Discomfort was literally put together as a release to get our name out there. I think it represents the band that was very wide eyed and excited about playing live at the time. And look at what we achieved on such a small ep. 
We knew we had something special between us from that recording.

Captain Sludge – They were a stepping stone for us, the guys in the band were still growing and finding out what we can and can’t do. We feel we have some proper bangers on that EP dead crows and March of the Infected are two of those. We’ve also shown our slower side in songs like Delusions of Grandeur and Sweet Illusion.

I found that your songs are very liveshow-friendly, they have a real live energy. Do you write your songs purposely in a live mindset

Baz – Yes we definitely write with the mindset of a live scenario. We’re a live band. It’s one of our strengths. We don’t know any bands that can go into the studio, bang out 8 songs in 2 day.
I hate music that sounds computerised. Where’s the human element?  Pop music is polished to sound perfect. So why are bands now trying to make it so shiny and perfect? I always think of it like this

Captain Sludge – We simply write songs we like, we’ve always loved songs where you can bang your head to, have a little mosh if you like, but it is very refreshing to know that what we write other people love and enjoy

Spalders – Yes I suppose it could be said we do, our EP and upcoming album were both recorded and tracked live in the studio, no overdubs no added sparkle. Raw, passionate and live!!So what you hear on the cd is what you get live.

You are currently working on new material. How will your next album look, and will it differ from your EP?

Captain Sludge – It’s a progression forward, the songs are a little more complex but still keeping our doom and sludge heritage that we all know and love. We have gotten a little faster and we personally feel that we have grown as a band and learnt each other’s strengths and weaknesses, we’ve adapted this and written better more intense songs that we hope people will love. We’ve gotten some of our close friends on there for some guest vocals but I’ll leave that as that, you’ll just have to buy it to find out more

Baz – . Musically the album will be a lot different.
There are four strong personalities in this band and we all like different types of musical tastes. We’ve matured a lot since the last EP. I think fans of the Darkhorse will like the new songs. In true Darkhorse style we’ve re-recorded a couple of old songs too

What will 2016 look like for The Darkhorse?

Spalders – As many gigs in as many new places as possible and our new as yet untitled album!!

Baz – If 2016 is anything like the last two years it’ll be packed. We gig all year and now with the new album as well its gonna be mental.
We’re going on tour soon as well. 
So look out for announcements soon.

Captain Sludge – Bigger shows better locations and maybe more whisky and cider consumed.

We at Metal On Loud love to discover new music. Do you have any tips for our readers, bands they should definitely check out?

Spalders – Krysthla, Fuelled Hate, Stormbringer Siderian – some awesome local bands from the our neck of the woods! 

Baz – Bands I’m into at the moment sunn 0)), earth and tenhornedbeast. I love portal too. I’m big into my drone metal.
Local bands I’m really digging are Krysthla they’ve really seem to be making an impact.

Captain Sludge – We’ve always supported our local scene so here are some of our bands we feel you should check out, in no particular order: Krysthla / Stormbringer / From Eden to Exile / Devine Solace / Black Ink Sun / Siderian / The Atrocity Exhibit / SirBlackNewt / Madisme

Any final words for our readers?

Spalders – Listen loud, bang your head and enjoy live music!! Bring a beard!!

Baz – Drink whiskey, take LSD, listen to Burzum

Captain Sludge – Buy bands merch at shows, it’s you that keep them on the road! Also

Ever looked back through your favourite bands CDs and thought, I which I saw them back then… we, check out your local band now. Black Sabbath was once a ‘Local Band’ and so were Led Zep and Metallica

Mat – Hi I’m Mat, I play the drums for The Darkhorse….oh, has the interview finished?

Thank you for taking the time to talk to us! (You too Mat!)


Randy Gerritse

Randy is the founder of Metal On Loud Magazine and its community. He is a lyricist for several bands (Dissector, GOOT), an author currently working on his second book, and does web development for a living.

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