Monday, February 1, 2016
Rex Shachath Interview
1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?
Just last November we released a brand new EP 'Revocation Of The Blood Elect' so we've been busy promoting that release. We've released a number of videos, behind the scenes documentaries, music videos and a couple of weeks ago we released a new lyric video. We've been writing bits and pieces so I think the next thing we'll do is start focusing on that.
2.So far you have released 2 ep's, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on both of the recordings and also how do they differ from each other?
'Sepulchral Torment' was written and recorded very quickly, within a couple of months of forming the band actually. That EP is very old school, in terms of writing and sound. It's more loose, a little wreckless sounding, in a good way, for lack of a better phrase. Since then the band has spent a lot of time together, on tour, etc. so I think when it came to writing 'Revocation Of The Blood Elect', we had more of an idea and a plan of where we wanted to go with the record. I think overall that gives the Revocation EP a much more direct and ruthless feel. Production value has definitely stepped up, and that gives the new EP a more modern sound, but the old school death metal ideals are still in there.
3.This was the first release in 3 years, can you tell us a little bit more about what was going on during that time span?
Touring mostly. We had planned to release the first EP and very quickly, within one year release a second. We ran slightly over time with the touring commitments we had so didn't get to into the studio until November 2013. The biggest delay was actually on 'the business side'. We needed a label to release it and once a contract was secured the label needed to do their thing, schedule the release, etc.
4.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?
Like all our stuff, the underlying message in each song is a social commentary. This particular EP looked at those that abuse their positions of power and profit at something or someone else's expense. Be it world leaders, big business, or whatever. We look at the plight of earth, and humanity, it's destruction for financial gain, but also the mental side of it, the psychological effects of those abusing their positions and/or destroying our planet.
5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Rex Shacath'?
It's a mixture of two languages, Latin and Hebrew. Rex translates as 'King' and Shachath as 'Destroyer', 'Corrupter'. We didn't have a name for a while, it was only after writing most, if not all of 'Sepulchral Torment' that we settled on a name. We needed something that was strong, and something that suited our style of music. We were reluctant to have a name before having some music first.
6.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Our stage show is quite energetic, as you would expect from a good death metal show. Plenty of movement and a big sound. The best show we've played... that's a hard one, we've had a few. I think one of our most memorable trips was Germany 2014. We did two shows, Wolfsburg and Berlin. That was a slot of fun. We've also had a lot of fun in Scotland over the years.
7.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
Nothing. No plans. We've looked at a few things but we haven't confirmed anything. It's hard these days, there's so many bands and you really have to weigh everything up. We've all been doing this with this band and other bands for years, and although it's a lot of fun to tour, it has to make sense now. Fortunately we've had a lot of good shows so far. But we've also had some shockers. It is about having fun, but we're all busy guys, we have other bands, businesses to run, work, family, life in general... You don't want to be slogging your ass off to play in front of 5 people a night, and believe me we've all been there before. You're better off spending your time promoting the band in other ways. You have to start somewhere of course, and not to sound like we deserve any better because who are we? Nobodies on the grand scheme of things... but honestly, fuck that. Travelling for hours to play in a shit hole to 5 people... It's more fun when you're young, dumb and full of cum. We have to be selective now, even more than we ever were before, we have to use our time better, we'll play live of course, but it needs to be for the right reasons.
8.The last ep was released on Great Dane Records, how would you compare working with them to your older label 'Hostile Media'?
We could have released through Hostile Media again, after all it's a label I set up as a launch pad for this band. What I really wanted with this release was to bring some new people into the picture, people who had different connections and had a different audience. That was the sole purpose of switching labels, more publicity. With Hostile Media and the release of our first EP, I handled all the promotion, I run a music PR business so that's no problem for me. With Great Dane I was able to do the same but it was great having someone else also helping with the promotion side of things.
9.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of death metal?
Very good. We're not in this to get a pat on the back and a 'well done you'. Our music is for us but it's a nice bonus when others appreciate what we're doing. One thing the media love to talk about though is 'musical innovation' and 'pushing boundaries'. The most negative things that people have said about our music is that it isn't anything new, and new is definitely something we've never proclaimed to be. We shout about it in fact. We write death metal, that's it, you could call it a homage to all our favourite bands. We're not interested in pushing boundaries or trying to change how people look at music. Our focus is writing a well arranged banging death metal tune. There's always room for a good song, right? Having said that, I have read a few things online where people have called us innovative... I don't think we are... If you like death metal, no frills, no bullshit, then Rex Shachath is a band worth checking out.
10.Are any of the band members also involved with any other bands or musical projects these days?
I'm the only one involved with something else active at the moment. A band called Overoth. We've just finished a new album. It's been a few years in a making, something very different to previous releases. So keep and eye out for that...
11.When can we expect a full length and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
Musically, who knows, time will tell... and when to expect a full length, who knows... I'd like to have something done this year, but it all depends on how the writing goes... maybe we will never release anything again... It has to be better than 'Revocation Of The Blood Elect', that's for sure.
12.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
Big influences on 'Revocation', were bands such as Dying Fetus, Asphyx and Misery Index. Nowadays, personally I'm listening to a lot more melodic stuff. Bands like Insomnium, Enshine, Fractal Gates, Shylmagoghnar... I've also recently really got into a few other bands such as Green Carnation... I'm loving the new Myrkur record also...
13.What are some of your non musical interests?
A lot of my interests relate to music in one way or another... as I mentioned before I work in PR, it's a job but it's also something I really enjoy doing. I love taking a band, exposing them, and seeing them benefit from my work. It's a job that takes a lot of time, long hours. I've also recently launched a videography business called Full Scope Films, focusing on music videos. I also do some work in film & TV. Then I've the two bands, though Rex Shachath is fairly quiet, we're doing a lot of things with Overoth at the moment preparing for the new album. We've a lot of plans with this band over the next couple of years. I enjoy photography. I own a Siberian Husky which takes up a lot of time, he needs lots of exercise. I enjoy gardening, I grow my own fruit and veg. I recently got into brewing as well , I've just finished and bottled my first 40 pints of beer. I'm making some mead wine at the moment as well which takes quite a while to make. I'm always busy doing something haha.
14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?