Acid Witch released one of the albums of the year in 2008 full of classic tales of Horror and Doom. The music is a mixture of Doom, N.W.O.B.H.M and Horror soundtrack music, the perfect thing for Halloween time which is when the CD was first released. The album is hugely popular in the underground, everyone I have spoken to loves the album. It is unfortunate that is so widely available for free download, otherwise the album would have got some real healthy sales. To sum up, this is essential listening to anyone who loves old school doom and N.W.O.B.H.M or anyone wants to hear something unique in the world of Doom Rock. This interview with Slasher Dave we touch on the making of the album and also the band Horrific who have released a album that is another classic in the making. This dude is on a roll, enjoy these tales of Witchtanic Doom.
I will get started by saying thanks for doing this interview. How have things been going,sounds like you have been pretty busy?
Things have been going great man! Yeah, been busy with my new band HORRIFIC, "Your Worst Nightmare" just came out, I'm pretty excited about that. And Im always writing shit for Acid Witch, that keeps me pretty busy.
When did the idea for Acid Witch first come up?
I'm not quite sure when I had the idea, Ive always loved Halloween and the fall season ever since I was a kid. I guess I just wanted to do a trippy band that captures the essence of the season, and also shows my love for the 1970s Halloween sounds lps and 80s scary sounds cassettes. Acid Witch was just an instrumental project of mine, I sampled a bunch of laughing witches from an old 80s cassette tape I love, and wrote some trippy doom/70s rock rock to it. I guess that's how it got started, so the idea for it didn't really happen until after a song or two was written...
How long did the album take to put together from the time of writing the first track to the completion of the album?
It took about 3-4 months I think. We were on a pretty tight dead-line to get it out by Halloween.
The sound the band has riff wise is closer to bands like Pagan Altar, Witchfinder General etc. How much of a influence are those bands?
A LOT. haha! Thats exactly what we are going for! I wouldn't consider us the super slow kinda doom a lot of people would expect us to be, we go for a more hard rock/NWOBHM sound. The only thing that really puts us in the death/doom genre is the vocals, and maybe a couple riffs. I really don't think there is a genre that really describes us. We take a lot more influence from those bands than any death metal bands.
One of the stand out things on the album are the lead breaks.They really leap out of the speakers. Was there a lot of time spent on getting them right?
Fuck no! haha. I just played them LOUD and kept the volume insanely loud to. Usually when bands record solos, they are recorded very loud, then turned way down in the mixing process, FUCK THAT! The solos should be loud as fuck, just like they were in the early days of metal.
The artwork is spectacular not only on the album but also on the t-shirts. Who comes up with all the designs?
Well, Shagrat totally came up with the album cover himself. We had a great idea that he was originally gonna paint, but that got fucked up somehow. He sent me a sketch of the cover that was used, and it totally blew me away! He painted it up and I think it came out A LOT better than our original idea would of. As far as shirts go, Ive come up with one of them, Putrids design. Nevs design was actually a little face in the concept sketches for our logo, I didn't want it in the logo but I liked it so much he inked it for me to make a shirt. Jeff Zornow actually dropped acid to draw the orange Halloween shirt, his weird fucked up head came up with that whole thing, haha! And the "Skull Crusher" was just fan art by RAFAL KRUSZYK I liked so much I asked if we could do a shirt of it.
Razorback Records is a great label to be on. How did that deal come about?
Billy heard a track with Lasse doin vocals and said "LETS DO A CD MAN!". hahahaha! That's how it came about basically!
The album is very popular amongst people i know,has the band had many reviews and how have they been in general?
I hate 90% of the reviews for "Witchtanic". These metal magazines/webzines/websites just DO NOT get the band AT ALL. Its no surprise, they praise bands like SLIPKNOT (WHICH IS POP, NOT METAL) and call us cheesy, which I am VERY proud of, they just use the word "cheesy" like its some horrible thing to be. Yet they listen to Slayer and Venom (which are great bands), but are SUPER cheesy! If singing about a made up FICTIONAL character created to scare people into behaving a certain way such as SATAN inst cheesy than I dont know what is! Oh wait, I DO! Singing about witches that drug people is WAYYYYYY cheesier. Ive also seen us compared to Hooded Menace and them compared to us. Yes we do share the same vocalist but WTF?! That just shows you the mentality of these writers, they've got the brain of a 10 year old! AND they DON'T know ANYTHING about metal! Is it that hard to hear the insane amount of difference between us? Hooded is a crushing DEATH/DOOM band, Acid Witch is more of a psychedelic 70s/early 80s rock band with death metal vocals. Whats not to get? You got it! The fans know whats up, they are ALL that really matters and we make the music for them. So... Even tho we DO get "scored" very well in our reviews, they still suck in my opinion. Sorry for the rant, haha.
Already people are wondering about the next Acid Witch release. Any news on when that will happen?
No news on the full length yet, there WILL however be an unheard song and "worship the worm" on the 7" on DOOMENTIA! Which will be done VERY soon.
You are busy with other projects as well, tell us a bit about those?
Well, Horrific combines A LOT of different shit ranging from Motorhead/Venom and Demon to Grim Reaper and Dio, haha. Its just a crazy mix of punk, thrash, doom, and all sorts of metal and rock. I think A LOT of Acid Witch fans will really dig this band, this stuff is VERY hard to label to. And of corse my Horror soundtrack shit. Which is moving pretty slow nowadays.
You sound like you love Horror movies, what is your favorite genre of horror. Slasher flicks, cheesy horror films?
Slasher movies are FOR SURE my favorite! But the whole Heavy Metal Horror genre is a CLOSE second! I fucking LOVE movies like Black Roses, Rock n roll nightmare, and Trick or treat! I'm not to big of fan of "Classic Horror". A lot of those super old movies don't have any gore, they were REALLY censored, once the 70s and 80s came along film makers could go nuts and do whatever they wanted, that's what i am into.
If you weren't doing this kind of music, can you imagine yourself writing any other style of music?
Nope. I would want to start just a hard rock band someday tho. With singing instead of growls, that would be awesome. I write music im into, my bands combine everything I like music wise/movie/comic/ and art wise.
Here is your chance to say whatever is on your mind right at the moment, go for it.........
Thanks for the interview! Everybody check out HORRIFIC- www.myspace.com/horrificrocks
And be on the look out for some new Acid Witch shit. Take care.
Editors Note - You will see a lot of upper case letters on this but anyone who knows Slasher Dave will tell you he does a lot of shouting about things he loves!
Interviewed by Ed