Funeral Ash Interview
By: Benjie Stewart
You know that saying, "Everything is BIGGER in Texas"… Metal is big in Texas, and the scene is spread out all over the state. Funeral Ash are a new up and coming band that play real, mean, dirty black thrash metal. They have balls and attitude, which sometimes can become absent from a metal band that is just starting out. I had a chat with main man and drummer, now turned guitarist Gavin Boyle about the metal scene, Satan and what Funeral Ash have in store for the metal world.
Metal Mayhem Underground: "So tell us a little about the formation of Funeral Ash?"
Gavin: "Funeral Ash was formed in November of 2012 with myself (Occultus) originally on drums, Slaughter on bass guitar and Malfeitor on lead guitar and vocals. We played a succession of shows around Texas as a three-piece for over a year (to which you can find videos of on YouTube.) before adding a new drummer, with Voorgrim and myself moving to guitar and backing vocals to the finalized realization of our sound."
MMU: "Who writes the music and lyrics?"
Gavin: "Malfeitor and I have written all the music and lyrics since the inception of the band."
MMU: "Who did your logo?"
Gavin: "Brutal Logos from Barcelona, Spain.
MMU: "Have you been writing for a release? Or is there a release out?"
Gavin: "We have a three song demo that we recorded as a three piece and self-released through our Bandcamp which you can still download for free. We currently are in the process of finishing up writing for our first EP set to be recorded in September of this year and released through Southern Decay Media based out of Austin, Texas."
MMU: "What bands inspire you?"
Gavin: "The list could be nearly endless between all the members of our coven but I will give you the short list: Watain, Venom, HOD, Ritual Decay, Darkthrone, Von, Mercyful Fate, Slayer, Immortal, Motorhead, Absu, Plutonian Shore (RIP), Bathory, Dissection, Craft, Deathspell Omega, Mayhem, and Rigor Mortis just to name a few."
MMU: “Are you a Satanic band? How much does Satanism play a role in Funeral Ash or if any role at all, or does it loom over and under Funeral Ash like it does with some bands?"
Gavin: "Funeral Ash is first and foremost an occult black metal band. Our lyrical subjects not only deal with Satanism but also Pagan and Sumerian mysticism, H.P. Lovecraft, sorcery, magick, and the dealings of life on this miserable planet. Satanism plays a huge role in our visual aspect in the form of ritual as well, and represents the embodiment of freedom of expression and free will, and is a message to which we, as our duty, will spread until we are no longer on this earth. Satanism does not, nor will it ever loom over or under us. It is the representation of everything that we, as musicians and humans in general, embody and construct within ourselves on a daily basis."
MMU: "What does black metal mean to you in 2014? Is there an essence? Is the flame still burning or has it withered to just embers?"
Gavin: "There is a definitive essence to black metal in 2014, and although it is nowhere near what it was in the early 90's with the first and second waves of black metal, there are plenty of bands still carrying the torch to keep the flame burning. Though the scene has become overly saturated with fedora wearing hipster bullshit bands like Liturgy and Deafheaven. These bands are but a fad & only the true ones will be left standing when all is said and done. The flame will never wither. We are the ones who wear our leather and steel, covered by the blood of Satan every time we step on stage, and will always keep the black metal flame alive."
MMU: "I must say that I think with black metal bands like Deafheaven and Liturgy, they are bringing something fresh and different to the table. Of course not everyone is going to digest their style of black metal, but I do think it is a progression and a different kind of blackness and darkness that does have truth and meaning and feeling. I have to disagree with you that those bands are a fad or trying to be hip, I just think they are bringing a different ideal and approach to black metal. I wonder if Bathory and Cetlic Frost ever felt how you feel on these new bands when Emperor and Immortal were starting out in the early 90's. It makes you wonder. Moving on, is the metal scene better today or it worse?"
Gavin: "The metal scene is as strong as it has ever been and it’s only continuing to grow stronger every year that passes us by."
MMU: "How many gigs have you done in the short existence of the band?"
Gavin: "We have committed to playing 20+ live rituals in the short existence of our coven."
MMU: "Are there any other black thrash metal bands you would like to do a tour with?"
Gavin: "Short list: Absu, Watain, HOD. But touring outside of Texas right now is extremely difficult for us, with jobs and normal life bullshit."
MMU: "How do you get around while doing gigs? A van, bus, by car, or foot?"
Gavin: "We have a van that gets us and all our gear to all of our shows."
MMU: "Have you done any covers?"
Gavin: "In the “trio days”, we would cover Candlemass- “Solitude", and Celtic Frost’s "Dethroned Emperor" as well as Immortal’s "Tyrants" live, but lately we have only been focusing on our own material."
MMU: "Thanks for the interview. Any final words?"
Gavin: "Thank you for the interview, you can follow Funeral Ash on Facebook, and Bandcamp. Hail Satan!" ∆