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Scorn Of Creation - INSIDE THE MUZIC: Scorn Of Creation

20 Feb 2018 // An interview by butch181
After opening for Cattle Decapitation, and the incredibly successful release of their debut self-titled album, Seth Jackson and Kris Gillan of Scorn Of Creation stopped by to have a chat:

Check out the video below:

Alex (interviewer): So tell us about the band. How did it all start?

Seth (guitarist): I started with myself and the bassist George, we found a gap in the scene a couple years back, that needed to be filled. A genre that people used to do, traditional Death Metal, riff-driven and live shows, and was popular in the 200s with Demiurge and Backyard Burial. In recent years there has been a gap in the genre, so we decided to get some people together to fill the gap. We got Kris and Shaun and refined our sound for a few years, and through 2017 recorded our album, promoted it, and just performed our debut show recently.

Alex: How did the debut show go?

Kris (vocalist): It was sweet. About 150 people through the door, which is good for two bands that were playing their first show. The crowd reacted really well, and there is a lot of Scorn merch out on the streets

Seth: We sold about 32 shirts at our Wellington show, and we’ve had some pre-orders too.

Kris: We had strong self-promotion leading up to the gig, and with our recent signing [to Deadboy Records]. It was a great response.

Alex: I did Google you guys and most of the hits were definitely very recent.

Seth: We have been promoting hard for the last six months, and a lot has happened in that time. The first riff was written in 2008. Not specifically for this project, but I pulled it from the past.

Alex: I hear you have charted?

Kris: We got word an hour ago, that the Scorn of Creation album is #3 in the NZ Top 20 charts overall, and #18 in the Top 40. I believe we are just above Kendrick Lamar.

Seth: We beat out Lorde and Kendrick Lamar to debut at #3, and that is a record first for an extreme metal band to debut so high. Amazing for a debut, and amazing for a band that has existed for just under a year.

Alex: Why do you think it has been received so well. Is it because of that gap in the genre that you are filling?

Seth: What I have heard from peers and reviewers, it’s a genre that people want to hear. The album’s style is reminiscent of an older style of death metal, with new flair and a new flavour, and it’s nice to listen to; riff-driven and catchy. Performing live the crowd were bugging out. It’s something people have wanted for a while.

Kris: There is a solid amount of death metal bands that have a more international sound. With a lot of production, and it has been lacking in New Zealand metal for a while; a lot of albums have been underproduced. They never have that big sound that people look for when thinking about what’s good in extreme metal. Us and the bands we were playing with last night (Cattle Decapitation and Organectomy), the people seem hungry for it.

Alex: You guys recorded the album yourselves?

Seth: At mine, we recorded guitar, bass, and vocals. We got features from Jolene Tempest [ex-Bulletbelt] and Dan Birrell from Carnal. We did it all at home in my mini studio beside my bed in the bedroom. Once we sent those tracks to Shaun, he recorded the drums at his house at his home studio. We wanted a really raw sound, I even used a semi-low-end guitar to record the rhythm tracks, I wanted that essence of rawness. We went with ourselves, doing it all internally. We got some offers to do mastering, but we opted to save some money and made sure we kept that raw sound by recording, producing, and mastering ourselves.

Alex: One of the things I noticed, is that the vocals don’t cover everything. You can actually hear the guitar playing the solos. Is that one of the aspects that characterize your sound?

Kris: When I write vocals, they will send me the tracks once they have recorded the guitars and drums, and I will go to the pub, put the headphones in, sit there and write. It’s been about 20 years since my first band, and I like to be considerate to what these guys are doing, looking where I do and don’t put my voice, to allow the guitars and drums to speak for themselves. I get more power across when I’m not just covering the whole thing. There is a lot of death metal out there where the vocals blanket everything, and you do lose a lot of emotional and powerful moments in the barrage.

Seth: Sometimes silence is really loud. With the instruments we decided to pull the rhythm sections back and allow the drums to relax a bit so you can hear the phrasing and the story behind it; the intense moment, the vocals, the riffs, and when the solo is there it’s a part of the song, almost a song on its own, but it isn’t just a shred on top. As a guitarist, that has always been my approach. Looking at Brian May [Queen] and David Gilmore [Pink Floyd], I like to apply that element to death metal, and it all ties in with more classical elements, or jazz. These sorts of things mean that the average listener who doesn’t like death metal may still like it. They may not like the genre, but they can still appreciate the technicality of the song.

Alex: Your songs are reasonably short in length, ranging from 2 to 4 minutes. Is it difficult to fit all these aspects of your music into the short timeframe? Or is that how the song naturally comes about?

Seth: Basically, we didn’t want to force either side of it. As a new band learning to work together as musicians, the songs came together as they did, and we thought we’d add a bit here and there if needed, but if it feels good and feels right, then why add to it? Forget the norms, we go by the feel. The songs are short and the album is short, but it doesn’t feel short when you play it through, and you want to listen to it again. As we get used to working together our tracks are getting longer, but we love that short punchiness, like that of an opening band.

Kris: I wrote this technically as a concept album; one story throughout the whole eight songs. Rather than try to fit a story into two minutes, I could branch out and use the different emotions of each song to say something about the overall story. Not that anybody has picked up on it yet.

Seth: We will be doing a re-release later on vinyl and will include the lyrics with it. The whole concept album idea worked well and is why we went self-titled as well. The name of the band inspired the concept; this is Scorn of Creation, the concept, the name, the art, the story, it’s all part of the same thing, and ties together nicely.

Alex: Tell us about your guest vocals on the album

Seth: Early in the project, we wanted to get one or two people that we have worked with in the scene involved. I was in Bulletbelt with Jolene Tempest in the past, so we wanted to get people that we’ve worked with before, and people that fitted with the music. Jolene and Dan were on Dante (Traversing the Unknown) and Rebirth (The Promise of Pain to Come) respectively. We had Jolene do a black metal part before the song transitioned to a groovier riff. Dan had a part at the end of one of our songs that was different to the rest of our stuff, a bit crazier.

Alex: Tell us about the vocals. How hard is it to physically do this growl?

Kris: It’s not difficult now. I’ve been doing it for a while, although this is the first project since 2013, and we went straight into recording with very little practice. I effectively walked into the studio and went straight into recording, and that caused a strain as I found my footing, but you get used to it very quickly, and after a couple of gigs, you’re back hitting the super highs and super super lows. I learnt traditionally how to sing, which helped with the breathing and using the diaphragm. I’m not just screeching with my throat and burning out after one song. When you are doing something heavy like this, you are going to do long-term damage if you aren’t doing it properly.

Seth: I do the backing vocals live. And it’s very similar to me with the traditional training and clean singing. It’s not hard, but it is very physical, like going for a run or doing weights. It’s quite intense, especially with the level of power we put behind our voice.

Alex: Have vocals always been your thing?

Kris: Yes. I can’t play any instruments. I wish. When I was 15 or 16 my mates had a party with their band, and after they played, everyone else jumped on and had a jam. I jumped on the microphone and started drunkenly screeching like an idiot, and then got asked to join the band. It’s continued from there, and I’ve refined it and tried to make it more dynamic.

Seth: I started off listening to classics like Thin Lizzy and Fleetwood Mac with the parents, but I don’t really show much interest until I got older when the teachers noticed I’d start tapping tables. They put it in my report “Seth sucks at everything but he taps really well on the tables”. I remember reading that and started drumming. I tried guitar but couldn’t physically do it, so I picked up the drums for a couple of years and got pretty good. I founded a band called Human Butchery, my first death metal band, and a little bit down the track, I wanted to write music, so I picked up the guitar again, and something had changed; I could play it. I kept going on the guitar and started my own band again because I was so new that nobody would want me in their band. I ended up getting hired for this Pantera covers band. I was nowhere near the ability to be able to do it, so I sat in a room, and practised everything until I could almost do it. After playing gigs with them for a year or two, my abilities shot up because I had to do it. My whole musical career up until now has been working towards this. I started on the drums, and then switched to the guitar.

Alex: You’ve released the album, performed your first shows live and opened for Cattle Decapitation. What’s next?

Seth: We have a couple of slots coming up for internationals touring New Zealand, we want to tour the major cities for the release of the vinyl, and then we’ll be looking overseas. We already have a lot of interest from the States. There may be an extra track on the vinyl too, a little bit more incentive to get it.

Kris: We want to keep the momentum going as much as possible.

Alex: Thanks again for chatting with us!


About Scorn Of Creation

Scorn Of Creation are a Death Metal band hailing from Wellington.

New album Annihilation Cult available for NOW from Bandcamp and all other streaming platforms.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Scorn Of Creation


Annihilation Cult
Year: 2021
Type: Album
Scorn of Creation
Year: 2018
Type: Album
Buy Online @ Mightyape

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