Chance Garnette- Vocals
Nate "N8 Feet Under" Garnette- Guitar
Scott "Scunty D" Hedrick- Guitar
Evan "Loosh" Linger- Bass
Dustin Boltjes- Drums
Country of Origin: United States
At One With The Shadows (2004)
1. Tonight is is a real honor to be speaking with one of the most dynamic bands on the Metal scene today. Of course we are talking about the mighty Skeletonwitch. Around Nocturnal Euphony it is no secret that Skeletonwitch are one of my favorite bands out today. It all stems back a few years when I saw you guys on the Blackest of the Black tour. The show was in Atlanta, and you were the opening act. Needless to say your live show immediately made me a fan. Speaking of which you guys are currently on tour supporting the brand new album "Forever Abomination". Tell us about the recording of the new material.
We recorded the “Forever Abomination” in Los Angeles with producer Matt Hyde and engineer Chris Rakestraw. The experience was great. As usual, we had all the tunes written and ready to go. So it was just a matter of dialing in the sounds and laying it down. Fortunately Matt and Chris had a great understanding of where we were coming from and what we were looking for. They’re fucking wizards in the studio! It also helps when there is an army of Les Pauls and Marhsalls at your disposal. (laughs)
With this record we wanted to retain our natural sound (i.e. not over computerized or compressed) but, make the record sound bigger overall and, dare I say it, slightly more modern. Of course, when you’re tuning in standard and ripping our style of riffs through tube amps, it can only get so modern. (laughs)
2. The new album hits stores in the U.S. on October 11. This is the third full length album from Skeletonwitch, what if anything was different this time around as far as creating the album?
The biggest factor was having more time to write for this record. Our record label wanted us in the studio much sooner than we wanted, so we had to put our foot down and essentially tell them to fuck off! (laughs). But that’s actually the sign of a good record label: they respected us and backed off and let us do our thing. And I think we’re all better for that fact.
As usual with the material, we don’t rule anything out based on style. We incorporate a lot of different genres and influences, and this record is no exception. If the riffs, songs, vocal patterns, leads, etc… give us chill and make us want to headbang, then we’ve done our job. As fans of metal we write what we want to hear. Perhaps it’s selfish to write for yourself, but the minute you start writing to please someone else, the music starts to suffer.
3. Being an old school Metal guy myself I love the fact that Skeletonwitch still uses great album cover art. Is the same artist used on all 3 albums. Who is the artist?
This is actually our 4th full-length, though we re-recorded some tunes from our self-released 1st album throughout the years.
“At One With The Shadows” (art by Kari Christensen)
“Beyond the Permafrost” (art by John Baizley)
“Breathing the Fire” (art by Andrei Bouzikov)
“Forever Abomination” (art by Andrei Bouzikov)
4. The state of Metal music in 2011 is vastly different than what most of us grew up listening to. Not to say bad but certainly different. There are a lot of frills and filler that can be utilized in the studio. One thing that I find most appealing about Skeletonwitch is the no bullshit approach to the music, it's just real Metal, in your face, with no apologies. Was this the idea behind the music originally?
It’s all we know how to do!! (laughs) We didn’t sit down with a grand plan and decide what the band would sound like. It’s just naturally what comes out because of our influences. We tend to gravitate towards pure, no-frills metal, be it black metal, death, thrash, and even rock’n’roll.
5. There are two very distinct sides to bands. The recording side, and the live show side. Unfortunately some bands are unable to pull off both of these. Skeletonwitch always releases very tight, well produced albums that you can really sink your teeth into. The live show is off the charts. You guys really bring it to the crowd. How are the Skeletonwitch live shows from the bands stand point?
When I was 14 or 15 years old, my brother took me to see Slayer. They took the stage, bathed in red light and fog behind a giant Slayer backdrop and started playing “South of Heaven” at an insane fucking volume. I had never seen anything like it. It gave me the chills. It was fucking evil and so fun at the same time. If we can create that feeling in others, then I think we’re doing our job.
We also just love to tour and play live. We get off on it. So when we’re up there we’re playing our favorite metal music, with our best buddies, and just fucking going for it. You can fake that or force. It’s fucking sad, and a bit pathetic, to see a band that obviously doesn’t want to be on the stage.
6. It is said that this may be the darkest, most EVIL, Skeletonwitch album yet. What is your opinion on this?
I agree. There are spots where the album really opens up and some serious black metal comes through. Just playing fast as fuck doesn’t make a record “evil” sounding and “Forever Abomination” is the best balance of all our attributes. It’s definitely the most cohesive album Skeletonwitch has released to date.
7. Now that "Forever Abomination is set for release, and the tour is underway. What is next for Skeletonwitch?
More touring!!! (laughs) But seriously…lots more touring. We’d love to get to Japan and Australia sometime in 2012, you know, before the world fucking blows up, whatever is supposed to happen in 2012. We need to get back over to Europe again. Maybe play the early round of Summer Festivals (Download, Hellfest, etc..). We also are planning on doing a full U.S. (and hopefully Canadian) headliner. It’s been too fucking long since we went out on our own and played a longer set.
8. In closing please leave our readers with any final thoughts or comments, and thanks for your time. Looking forward to the new album!
Thanks to everyone who has supported Skeletonwitch in anyway and enables us to do what we love….playing heavy fucking metal!! It’s truly appreciated.