20 October 2011
Shortly before the band hit the stage at the Live Lounge in Durham, we catch up with Ol Drake and Ben Carter to find out how the tours being going and chat about the new album.
MG - Hi, Great to meet you both, how was Wrexham last night?
Ben - Really good, really good, it was one of those venues that we didn't expect that many people at, but turned out to be full and a fantastic gig.
MG - You have been getting rave reviews for the new album, how are the songs from 'Five Serpents Teeth' being received?
Ben - Yeah we're really proud of the new album, there's a lot more of the fun feeling back in the band. The new tracks are brilliant to play live, and when we were tracking in the studio, it was just so much fun, they are a little bit more acceptable.
The fans are getting into them quickly and they are getting into people's heads really quickly.
Ol - They are going down like the first album tracks, everyone went mental, the second album was a bit more experimental.
MG - 'Cult' is already becoming a favourite.
Ben - Yeah we wanted something not so much cheesy, but something that people can get into their heads almost right away. One of my friends was saying to me ... (Ben) I hate you at the moment because I'm going to bed with 'Cult' in the head! Waking up with the same riff going round and round ... that's what we wanted.
MG - The album launch in Birmingham must have been totally awesome.
Ben - The album launch in Birmingham was very good and very cool with some amazing bands and a great reception.
MG - With rave reviews for 'Five Serpents Teeth', what is Evile's feeling with regards to a review I saw saying that 'In Memorium' the tribute to Mike Alexander is Evile's answer to Metallica's 'Nothing Else Matters'?
Ben - People are always going to draw similarities and it's just another parallel to put on the list, we aren't annoyed by it. We didn't write it for Mike, we wrote it as a tribute.
Ol - It started off for Mike, but the more it grew, it became about what happened but it was like saying that song would not exist without what happened to Mike.
Ben - Sooner or later we had to put our feelings about what happened out in a piece of music.
MG - I just think the misconception is there because you used to do Metallica covers and people cling on to that.
Ben - We are not ashamed of our past, we would not be doing what we are doing now without doing that and we are really aware of what our influences are, and why shy away from that. we don't write a piece of music because we want to continue that, if you can hear the musical influences then fine.
MG - What are your stand out tracks from the album?
Ben - Either 'Xaraya' or 'Long Live New Flesh' ... 'Xaraya' because we had not really attempted anything like that before, it's maybe because it's a bit like 'Metamorphis' off the second album, a bit off the wall and progressive. 'Xaraya' I would like to think is like two songs bunged together to make one epic song.
Ol - It makes people have to think rather than just ... "Metal ... whatever" ... it's a song that has so many intricate bits, people go mental for thrash, but 'Xaraya' is a track where people are stood there listening thinking ... WOW!
MG - What are your feelings on mosh-pits?
Ben - We are lucky in respect that when we do have mosh-pits, people seem to look after each other, that's key we think. we did have an incident a few days ago when someone jumped on stage to stage dive and they caught Joel's lead and brought the stack down on him. That could have been expensive and dangerous for Joel, but it's part and parcel of our genre you know, if people are getting up on stage and enjoying themselves that's brilliant, but they have just got to have their wits about them, as they could quite easily injure someone else or themselves.
MG - I really love Evile's artwork, have any of your guys got them as tattoos?
Ben - No we haven't.
Ol - But some people are getting them aren't they?
Ben - Yeah we know some of our fans are getting the 'Five Serpents Teeth' logo as a tattoo. All my tattoos are personal and remind me of my childhood. I'm taking my youth with me.
MG - The crowds ... are they all different age ranges?
Ol - It's completely mixed, there are kids from 15 years old to the originals from when thrash first started out in the eighties.
Ben - There were a couple of guys at a gig last night in business suits, who had just finished work. We were like ... What are you doing here!!
But yeah, it's always varied and good, we would like to think especially with the new album, that there's something there for everyone. Old school thrashers to people who haven't heard of us before.
It's always varied and everyone always seems to enjoy it.
MG - How do you feel about reality shows like the X Factor etc?
Ben - Bollocks! It gives the general public a false idea of what the music industry is about. We know of bands who work their arses off and sometimes they are out there playing to just ten people in a room. It must be soul destroying.
Ol - It is really ... X Factor is just a factory line of the same old crap, the programme seems to think it can make automatic superstars, but if you look nice and can sing a note, you will get far on X Factor. But in reality, the outcome is that 4 - 5 people make millions and millions out of the industry. For this programme to think it can make that and engineer that year after year ...
Ben - In reality it's a massive kick in the balls for the people who are out there playing 300 plus shows a year.
MG - What tours have you got lined up for next year?
Ben - We have got a European tour lined up for January and February, the we're probably back to the UK late next year. We'll try to get back to America. Then Australia, Japan, just try and get to as many places as possible, places we have not played before ... like South America, but with that king of tour, it's just the budgeting side of it.
MG - What do you think has been your biggest accomplishments to date?
Ben - The Megadeth tour we did in Europe for six weeks or so. It was the first tour we had done which was a higher level, so much professionalism instead of just playing a gig and leaving. To be at that kind of level, it just changed the way we see touring.
MG - What was Dave Mustaine like?
Ol - Awesome, lots of people said like be careful, he's an arsehole, but he was great, really intellectual and down to earth. Problem is he has an entourage and he's like in a bubble ... he will talk to you when he wants to. You can't approach him when he is busy because, you would feel his wrath. An an individual he's great really, really straightforward. Like anyone else he has his off days.
Ben - When we met the guys, we got on the bus and Megadeth were like ... we have left you presents on your bunks ... it was all gay porn!!!!! We were like thanks!?! Then it all disappeared!?! Very strange, very dodgy ... (laughs).
MG - Any other accomplishments?
Ben - Playing Download, Sonisphere, touring the States ... we've done so much in a short time ...
MG - Any bands on your wish list?
Ben - The obvious ... the M word, but I don't think Madonna would have us on a tour! (laughs) Obviously Metallica!!!
MG - I see you started your tour down the South West, how was that?
Ben - Yes very good and well received. We've had some great gigs so far on this tour and in towns we have not been to before, and people coming out and getting into our music. For some people its been their first Evile gig.
MG - What bands are you listening to when you are travelling?
Ben - I think everyone has an alternative to metal, you can't listen to it all the time. We are surrounded by it all the time. We love metal of course, but when you have been un a venue all night, it's nice to just chill and listen to something classical or just a radio channel to wind down.
MG - I love the fact you are being dead honest, some bands would be .. ohhhh we just listen to metal and nothing else.
Ben - Well you can get ideas from Stravinsky and Tchaikovsky.
Ben - A gig's a gig. Some of the best gigs we ever had were ones you aren't sure about. we played a gig in Holland, like a street party, with a table top sale in a car park. The stage was in front of this. It was like a bring and buy sale, but it was one of the best gigs we ever played!! we won't turn anything down.
And if our manager and them could sort it out ... Yeah!
MG- What are your views on the current metal scene?
Ben - Really good, lots of British bands. It is very healthy, there are loads of up and coming bands, the thrash scene is viable again. You have to be self-sustainable though as downloading is killing music.
MG - I love the way you look after your fans and the way the band personally delivered the new album to a fan.
Both - We want to have time with the fans. We will always be like that, having time for the fans, no matter how big this gets, we will always have time for them. After all it's them who pay their money to buy the albums and tickets, we could never be like some bands who hide away in a dressing room.
Thanks for your time, it was great meeting you and hope you have a fantastic gig tonight.
Interview By Alison Bear & Seb Di Gatto