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Issue #560.5

Mini-Issue #560.5
August 20, 2010

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Patrick Brower, Editor

Sean P. Gahgan, Editor

Tim Wadzinski, Owner

Steve Shumake, Co-owner

-Ms. Stephanie Davison sure has been busy lately, piling all kinds of reviews and interviews on my virtual desk the last couple of weeks. Here is more of her handiwork. Enjoy. – Tim

by Stephanie Davison (Zatanna7@comcast.net)

-Interview w/ Patrick Kennison (Heaven Below)
August 6, 2010

Fresh on the scene is Heaven Below, a “hard passionate rock” band as front man Patrick Kennison describes it. I recently had the chance to interview this up and coming band about their self-titled album. This is a band that touches the emotional side of things, but they’re still rockers at the heart of it, too. So join me now, and let’s get intimate with Heaven Below.

DETRITUS: How did you all meet and get together?

PATRICK KENNISON: Our bass player John [Younger] and I grew up together in San Antonio, TX. We moved out here to Los Angeles in 2003 and lived in a Hollywood apartment with our buddy DJ Ashba (Sixx:A.M., Guns N’ Roses). After my band The Union Underground ended, I met Chad [Clark] our drummer at a Hollywood rehearsal complex; we hit it off [and] formed the band and had John join us and searched far and wide for a killer guitar player. Dozens of auditions later Jesse [Billson] showed up and blew us away.

D: How do you classify the band? You say on your MySpace page that you are influenced by bands like Alice In Chains, Rage Against The Machine, and Metallica. What genre or subgenre of rock or metal would you place yourselves in?

PK: I try not categorize or put the band in a specific box. We just play what sounds and feels right. I call it hard passionate rock. If someone wants to call it modern, aggressive, metal or whatever. Those labels are all fine with me.

D: What do you bring to your live shows, both physically and emotionally?

PK: For us it’s simply an emotional release brought on by the struggles of life. Playing music successfully is one of the hardest things to do in the world. Luckily it separates the strong from the weak. We utilize a video production system as well as a few arena rock presentations that we’ve emulated from our heroes.

D: Which do you prefer: writing and recording or touring? And why?

PK: As of late my head has been in writing and recording mode. It’s definitely my favorite creative outlet. But now that the rest of the world is starting to find out about us I’m ready to shift into tour mode again. No download in the world will replace the experience an audience and a live band create together.

D: Are any of the members in the band classically trained? If so, who?

PK: I don’t think so. I did take guitar lessons from an amazing famous guitarist as a teenager. Jesse knows quite a bit of theory, but he actually plays incredibly well unlike most theory players I’ve heard. Chad has a background in many playing styles. John knows about as much music theory as I know that African clicking talking dialect.

D: Who is your biggest musical inspiration? Any bands that you’d like to play with?

PK: Any band that lasts several generations. Priest, Maiden, AC/DC, ‘Tallica, Crue, AIC, etc., all the greats. We’d love to share the stage with Avenged Sevenfold, Disturbed, Sevendust. Any band with that raw passionate energy. Audiences love and feel that power.

D: I see you were recently endorsed by BC Rich Guitars. How is it like being endorsed by them and what do you like best about BC Rich Guitars?

PK: My relationship with them goes back to my Union Underground days. While most bands pick up the expected Les Paul or Strat, I’ve always felt that the BC Riches represented a more evil or dark style of music. I remember seeing a Slayer video as a kid and being intrigued by the music and the guitar Kerry King played. I also remember seeing the GNR video for “You Could Be Mine.” That Mockingbird Slash played was the coolest guitar I’d ever seen. It reminded me of a curvy, devilish woman.

D: You performed at a Cancer Benefit in Florida back in May. Tell me about that experience.

PK: I have many family members in the medical field and my brother had brought a wonderful strong person to our attention that was fighting cancer. And when we find out that someone needs help, be it physically or emotionally, I think it’s every artist’s duty to step up in any way possible. If music can help someone beyond the listening experience we’ll always be there.

D: Explain the writing process of your songs. What do you want listeners to take away from the lyrics?

PK: It used to be that I wrote songs after I came up with an initial riff or musical passage that I’d expand on. But since I’ve been the front man I now tend to come up with lyrics and song ideas first. Sometimes just watching a great movie is all I need to write the soundtrack I hear in my head. Sometimes I crank up an obscure metal or rock band from the ’70s and I try and cop the feel or emotion they had on a song. By the time I mix it with my ideas I have a new song. I hope the listeners take away something they can identify with in my lyrics. I always try to write from a sincere but sometimes dark place in my conscience. But if the casual listener doesn’t want to get that deep or close, I hope they can simply appreciate the melody and power we offer.

D: What are your aspirations as a band? Future plans?

PK: We simply want to play the music that we enjoy playing. That means not conforming to a particular trend or fashion. But through that we plan on establishing our own musical identity. We’ve also set out to show friends and fans that we are a band you can always connect with. That whole “untouchable and mysterious” band thing as pretentious and phony. I think music fans can see through that. So anytime your reaching out to us via the ‘net, a concert, a meet and greet, etc., you will always get one thing. Us, flesh and blood, live and loud in your face.

D: Thank you, Patrick for a great interview!

Relevant links:

Broken Halo Records

Heaven Below

by Stephanie Davison (Zatanna7@comcast.net)

-Interview w/ Gregory Nash (Addicted To Pain)
August 12, 2010

Emerging into the metal world, we see the introduction of the band Addicted To Pain. Their debut E.P. is a testament to their rock and metal inspirations. To get better acquainted with this determined new band, I interviewed drummer Gregory Nash to hear about their current album, future plans, and learned some fun facts along the way.

DETRITUS: What was your inspiration for starting this band?

GREGORY NASH: I spent most of my high school years and 20s listening to hard rock, metal, and thrash… I hadn’t played that kind of music for sometime so I answered an ad for a hard rock/metal band and informed them that I don’t play double bass kick or blast beats and they had me come down anyway and we hit it off rather well. We try to incorporate melody into streamline based solid riffing and arranging good powerful songs.

D: Your first album is your self-titled E.P. Do you plan on releasing a full-length album soon?

GN: Yes, we are in the scheduling stages now of recording a full-length this winter with Mr. Alex Perialas, he also did our E.P., he’s responsible for the great Anthrax, Overkill, Testament and Pro-pain albums not to mention the infamous S.O.D. record.

D: You each say you have different favorite songs on the E.P. How do each of you contribute to the song writing process?

GN: It’s very diplomatic, Leo [Curley, vocalist/guitarist] or Bob [Horvath, bass] may come in with a riff, I often come in with parts that I record to my phone whilst practicing. It’s a very collaborative process. Anything is open for suggestion and scrutiny and we all decide what’s best for the particular song we’re writing.

D: I saw that you are planning on touring the U.S. in the fall. Have you ever been touring before? What are you most looking forward to with this upcoming tour?

GN: I’ve toured the U.S. and Canada in other bands and I love it. Leo has been around the world with Biohazard and I know he’s itching to get back out, Bob is also very excited. We are currently in the pre-production process for the tour, scheduling dates, routes, merchandise, etc. We want to really make an impact and the only way to do that is to get out and play for the kids.

D: You guys play metal, and people in the metal scene have that wild, demonic, brutal, badass kind of rep. Tell me one thing about yourselves that you do that completely falls out of the metal stereotype.

GN: Well I’m into all kinds of music… I’m a huge fan of Tori Amos, Jeff Buckley, Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Yes, Stevie Wonder… I could go on, the list is endless… I guess it would surprise people that when I practice on my own, I often play drums along to a classical station on the radio — Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Mussorgski, etc. My favorite band of all time is The Rolling Stones.

D: Looking to the future, where do you hope to be in five years? What will you have wanted to accomplish?

GN: That’s a tough question… I obviously hope to still be drumming, writing and playing music for people in whatever capacity I can… it’s a very sacrificial and thankless business often times… Let’s just say I hope to have my cell phone bill paid off in five years time. (laughs)

Relevant links:

Addicted To Pain

*** OUT ***

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