Adelaide metal upstarts Far West Battlefront are joining the local metal discussion. Having released debut album ‘Chapters’ last year and already dropping new single ‘Malice in 2013, the band are pushing forward. Killyourstereo.com recently caught up with bassist Luke Simons to get an update on all things band related.
G’day Luke, thanks for doing the interview. As a starting point, can you talk us through how 2013 has been for the band so far?
Hi Kane, no worries thanks for having us. The year has been hectic so far. We tracked a new song in various parts of the country and played most of our shows interstate with a few rippers at home. It’s easy to become complacent after the Christmas break but we tried to come out full steam ahead in the new year.
Obviously, the single ‘Malice’ is the topic of conversation at the moment. Some good people involved mixing and mastering…and also on guest vocals. Tell us about the direction of the material.
Malice approached very differently from our full length, Chapters. We tracked drums with Roman [Koester] at Complex Studios in Melbourne along with guest vocals from Thy Art Is Murder vocalist CJ McMahon. We have been lucky enough to form a good friendship with both Roman and Chris so it was great to have them involved in the single. Our singer Adam frequently gets thrashed by Chris online in FIFA so the guest spot was probably out of sympathy to make Adam feel better (laughs).
Eyal and Jason over at Audiohammer did the mix for the new track and will be handling the upcoming release, while Alan Douches took care of the mastering.
The guitars were tracked by our guitarist Chad using a few different interfaces at his house as well as vocals being tracked by Chad. The song is due to be given the once over again when we head in to record mid year. The new direction will be in a similar vein to Malice but as our previous material there will always be a sense of harmony and some clean vocal sections. I think overall it will be a lot heavier and a lot faster from Chapters.
As you mentioned there about recording mid year. You had the debut album come out last year. How is writing for a sophomore release come along?
Writing is coming along really well so far. There were teething problems with writing so much content with Chapters as I am sure a lot of bands encounter on their first full length, but this time it seems a lot more relaxing and fun. We have been pouring over the songs we have written so far, going back over and trying to make them as perfect as possible. There has been a lot more jamming this time around so I think the songs will flow a lot more in a live environment and be a lot fun to play for us.
Just got back from Melbourne, how were those shows?
Melbourne was great. We played at home Friday night with Boris The Blade then hopped in the car and drove to Melbourne at 1AM, which was painful, but the shows were awesome. We are trying to pump Victoria a lot more as it is the closest capital outside of Adelaide and plan on heading back late June.
What’s the best part about local metal currently?
Adelaide heavy music is booming at the moment, which I think is fantastic. There was a bit of a lull with no real super heavy bands coming up, but now there is a bit of an influx with some great younger bands like I Exalt, Waking Giants and Tina Grey. All are doing really great things and more importantly very supportive of local music.
And the worst part?
As with most scenes there is always a degree of segregation occurring but nine times out of ten everyone is happy to give each other a hand.
As an insight, what is it like currently juggling work and being in a band?
It is always pretty difficult. I’m probably the luckiest one out of the band as I work shift work so I can swap things around if need to get time off work for interstate runs. My work email was used to book our most recent Malice tour also (laughs). My opinion is if you honestly love the music enough you will always find a way to make it happen.
What albums have you been digging so far this year and which ones are you most looking forward to?
This year has been a bit dry for me to be honest as I’ve just been pouring over American Me in the gym (laughs). The new Northlane album is a cracker, also pretty excited to hear the new Misery Signals album, which was announced a few days ago I think…oh and the new Bring Me The Horizon CD sounds ridiculous.
What’s the main goal for Far West Battlefront in the future e.g. in a couple of years time where would you like the band to be?
Becoming increasingly self sufficient would be awesome, we are currently self booked and self managed and have fought tooth and nail for everything we have ever achieved.
To date, what has been the best touring story?
I’m not sure if it is much of a story but I think the collective would agree our trip to Wet N Wild will go down in the FWB annuals. Just a super fun day, the Aqua Loop still gives me sweaty hands when I think about it (laughs). We always have a ball on tour, we aren’t a party band but always have a laugh together without the assistance of any substance. Our humour is all a bit left of centre so that could be it (laughs).
Favourite album of 2012?
Hate by Thy Art Is Murder or Chelsea Grins Evolve EP
Top three albums to play in the tour van?
Killswitch Engage – Alive or Just Breathing
Misery Signals – Of Malice and The Magnum Heart
Dr Dre – Dre 2001
Worst current trend in metal?
Overly synchronised stage moves. There’s nothing worse than watching what looks like a ballet rendition of the nutcracker suite.
What album is your guiltiest pleasure?
I’ve liked some pretty fruity stuff over the years, don’t mind dabbling in Forever The Sickest Kids (laughs).
What band or bands would like to see tour Australia in 2013?
Misery Signals, ALWAYS Misery Signals. Would also love to see a Chelsea Grin / Whitechapel tour happen. Hacktivist too.
Any final words?
Thanks to Fasta Pasta for your delicious carbonara.
Thanks Luke, appreciate it.