Chartreuse, Motionless in White, and new faces: An Interview with Skeletonwitch

Oh hi there.  What’s new.  It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these fancy little interviews and the boys in Skeletonwitch were goodly enough during their Vancouver to take some time to have a chat with me and tolerate my drunken buffoonery (you guys da real MVP).  Anyways, I had a little chat with Evan from Skeletonwitch who may be my kindred spirit.

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Robin Goodfellow:  So tell me who you are and what you do?

Evan:  My name is Evan and I play bass in Skeletonwitch.

RG:  So where does the name Skeletonwitch come from?

E:  Well, I think when the band started, they were kind of on the fence about what name to go for and someone in town, the band is from Athens, Ohio, a small college town, nothing like Vancouver.  They were playing instrumental shows before we even had a vocalist and stuff, I wasn’t even in the band then, and they had a friend who was wasted say, “you know what would be awesome, if you called the band Skeletonwitch”, and that’s how that came about, there’s no magic to it, it just happened.

RG:  That’s awesome, and that’s really often how the best names come up, just someone super hammered.  That’s how our website name came about actually.

E:  Oh yeah?

RG:  Yep yep.  So, tell me, how has the tour been going so far?

E:  It’s really good.  I really like all the bands so personally speaking, I’m having a great time.  Tribulation, the band that plays before us is awesome.

RG:  Yeah totally, they’re super tight.

E:  They’re one of my favourite newer bands.

RG:  The guitar player is super talented.

E:  Yeah absolutely, they’re awesome and High on Fire is super awesome.  And Abbath’s stuff is awesome, I’m a big Immortal fan.  I think the package itself is great and I’ve been having a great time.

RG:  Any remarkable shows or tour stories you want to share?

E:  Uhhh..  People ask that all the time and you know, it kinda turns into a blur with it being a different city every night or whatever, so there’s no remarkable stories like, “oh somebody got ran over, or somebody got too drunk”, shit happens every night and then you forget about it the next day.  I guess not?  There hasn’t been anything remarkable, there’s been some really amazing shows you know?  Austin, Texas is always really good.

RG:  Oh we love Austin, where did you play?

E:  We played at the new Emo’s and it was really good, but it was the new venue, not downtown which sucks because downtown Austin is awesome..  Portland was good, so was Seattle.  San Francisco was amazing.

RG:  Where did you play in Seattle?

E:  El Corazon.  World’s smallest venue.

RG:  Yeah it’s extremely tight there.  Pretty cosy.

E:  Extremely hot.

RG:  So what’s it like to tour with Abbath the black metal legend, is he super serious and grim or what?

E:  ….No.  I dont know if I’m ruining any mystique or anything here but yeah he’s not super serious at all.  He’s awesome, he came into our green room earlier today and shot the shit with us.  He’s and awesome dude, he’s not some grim ass black metal guy.  He listens to KISS, and like classic rock and stuff and he comes and hangs with us.  I’m a huge fan of everything he has done as well.

RG:  What about Matt Pike?

E:  We’ve toured with High on Fire before actually, we did a Canadian tour with them mayb four or five years ago and he’s awesome, they’re all awesome.  Amazing people to be on the road with.  Also the guys in High on Fire are super talented, they have this amazing chemistry on stage that I don’t know if I’ve ever seen in another band ever.  It’s like 98% super tight and 2% rock and roll slop that makes it perfect.  They’re perfect.

RG:  I would agree.  So you’ve recently changed up singers in Skeletonwitch, so how does that change the dynamics in the band?

E:  Well it’s a huge thing to change a singer.  As far as dynamic in the band, it’s made it 100% better, obviously from a fan’s point of view I dunno if thats what you are asking?  Obviously we have had people say “oh you know that’s awesome, you guys are better than ever” and then there’s the other side of the token where people say, “where’s you old singer?”

RG:  Yeah I’ve seen the hashtag online, “#bringbackchance”.

E:  Right, yeah.  So we get some flack for stuff like that.

RG:  But I mean if it’s working out better and everyone is happier, then, that seems to be the better choice.

E:  Right, absolutely, and I said this in an interview a while ago actually, I’m almost 31, I didn’t finish college because I like to play in a band and make very little money and I’m happy…  so..  If people aren’t into it then I don’t really care?

RG:  Well happiness, I think is the most important thing.

E:  Right, exactly.  Yeah if people aren’t into then yeah, don’t come to the shows, I don’t really care, we are having a good time.  This is the reason we are doing this, is because we are passionate about our art, and if people can reciprocate that to us by saying, “oh I love your new singer, I love your new songs”, then I’m happy.

RG:  Hey, your singer is tight, he’s got some amazing prescence on stage.

E:  He’s also the youngest member of the band.  I used to be the youngest one, and now we have this young buck and its nice to have some fresh blood.

RG:  How old is your new singer?

E:  He’s 28, so he’s the only one under thirty.  But it’s nice to have some fresh blood in the band, someone who is hungry for it, and who doesn’t mind the hardships of tour, to be able to go up there and do it.

RG:  So, do you think this will change the musical direction of Skeletonwitch?

E:  I don’t know.  Skeletonwitch is essentially, well not 100%, but Nate who plays guitar, it’s essentially his brainchild.  He writes all of the songs, and when he writes songs he will write a full song with drums.  A lot of people think that maybe this will change the band, but the thing is that Nate is the band, in that guy’s head is the band that we are today.  I think that things will change a little bit though in that Adam as opposed to chance is a little bit more high brow and thats something we might move towards a little bit, doing things that we like versus what people expect us to do.  But at the same time, we are still the same guys that write the same music.  We are the same band doing the same thing.  Even when we had Chance as a singer, we changed things album to album in a kind of natural progression.

RG:  Okay, so our website is called Drunk in a Graveyard, and we center on heavy metal and horror movies, so what we be the horror movie you would pick to watch and what would be the intoxicant of choice to go along with it?

E:  Okay, well I will preface this by saying I am not a horror movie fan in particular.

RG:  Oh nooooooo..

E:  Yeah I just don’t like all the gore.  And for intoxicant, you mean I’m supposed to pick an alcohol?

RG:  Alcohol or drug, yeah. We’ve had some weird ones.

E:  Okay, okay.  I would watch The Shining with some Chartreuse on the rocks.

RG:  That’s a good choice.  Okay so to finish up, we sort of do a fun lightning round.  Ready?

E:  Sure.

RG:  Coffee or tea?

E:  Oh coffee 100%.

RG:  Whiskey or beer?

E:  Whiskey.  I don’t drink beer.

RG:  Tits or ass?

E:  Oh, ass 100%

RG:  Puppies or kitties?

E:  Kitties, but I think I’m turning into a dog person in my 30s.

RG:  Pizza or tacos?

E:  Tacos.

RG:  Black metal or death metal?

E:  Black metal 100%.

RG:  Biggie or Tupac?

E:  Probably Biggie.

RG:  Nu-metal or metalcore?

E:  Oh shit..  *breaks off into laughter*

RG:  Yeah it’s a real Sophie’s choice.

E:  Oh man.  This is one of those gun to my head scenarios?

RG:  Absolutely.

E:  Nu-metal then.  Because at least you can laugh, metalcore is just a stain on the genre.  Nu-metal happened, you just have to admit that it happened.  Metalcore is still happening.  If you listen to nu-metal, there’s some irony there.

RG:  I’d rather listen to KoRn than say…..

E:…..  Asking Alexandria?

RG:  Yeah, or what’s the one, that Motionless in White band?

E:  Oh yeah, I work in a record store and when kids come in and ask to see something in the metal section and I take them over and they’re flipping through records and going through the M section and I hope they’re gonna grab a Mercyful Fate album and it’s always Motionless in White, a bunch of bullshit.

RG:  Yeah I had no idea what this was until recently, and I just wanna fight that guy.

E:  Oh it’s all terrible.

RG:  Britney Spears or Nicki Minaj?

E:  Nicki Minaj.

RG:  To go with the ass from earlier?

E:  Yeah, but that’s too much ass, I’m talking more musical talent.

RG:  That’s it!  Thank you very much.

E:  Thank you!

 

Thank you to the boys in Skeletonwitch, thank you to Evan for dealing with me, and thank you to Kelly for setting the whole thing up.

 

 

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