Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.
Scott: The band started in 2009 with our lead singer and guitar player Matt Matson as the original founding member. But Amos and I have been in the band for about six years. We started as a more traditional metal band, ala Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, but through various line-up changes, we got heavier, darker, and faster. Our sound has evolved from record to record, and it's very noticeable.
Matt: I joined after taking a break from my death metal band, Cemetery Filth, and moving back to Atlanta. Amos, our drummer, and Atlanta promoter extraordinaire, recruited me and brought me into the mix in late 2014. They got me introduced to the songs and I started playing with them officially around March 2015.
How would you describe your style? Which bands influenced your music?
Scott: Motorhead, Judas Priest, Bad Brains, Voivod, Slayer, Overkill, DRI
Matt: In a guitar sense, lots of Megadeth, Priest, and maybe even some Thin Lizzy. Our style reminds me of the early 80's thrash albums - Anthrax's "Fistful of Metal", Slayer's "Show No Mercy", etc. Back before thrash was full-on thrash, and it was ridden with the catchy hooks and melodies of N.W.O.B.H.M.
Why should a metalhead buy your demos/albums?
Scott: We worship at the altars of our forefathers, and our end result is a little different than our contemporaries. You really can't nail down what band we sound like - we pull from every corner. We're not trying to reinvent the wheel, we're trying to burn it down.
Matt: Yeah, this band has always been about doing what we want and not trying to follow trends or appeal to a certain crowd. The band has slowly been evolving into its purest form. Matson and Amos have been in the punk and rock scene for around two decades, but have always had a huge love for traditional and thrash metal - so with all of us putting our different influences in, we've solidified Death of Kings' style - whatever that may be.
What have you released so far and how were your releases received by the public/media?
Scott: We had a demo in 2009 with the original line-up. Once Amos and I joined we released the Crushed Beneath the Steel EP, and the Knifehammer 7". With the addition of Matt Kilpatrick on guitar, we released the Regicidal 2015 Demo, and now we are set to conquer the earth.
Matt: These guys have been working on it for years - when I joined they already had the Regicidal demo songs written, and those track's evil, ripping, and dynamic characteristics are what convinced me to join. We recorded that at our practice space with album producer, Josh Lamar.
Scott: The initial demo drew interest, but it wasn't until after Crushed Beneath the Steel when we started hitting the road and becoming more than a local band that the crowds started to develop as naturally as our progression on the records.
Matt: These guys were always a hometown favorite but as they've solidified their songwriting, even before I joined, they got bigger and bigger.
Do you play live as well? How's your live activity so far?
Scott: Playing live is what it's all about - because you get in the face of the listener. You can actually see the effect your music has on the people instead of waiting for the review. Playing live is so much damn fun. We've managed to hit the road quite a few times and left a lot of circle pits and crowd surfing in our wake.
Matt: These guys get people going like nobody's business. Matt Matson is the ultimate frontman - he's pissed, angry, and puts on a show like nobody else. I hope to have added to that live energy since joining. It's extremely fun and ripping music to play - and I think people feed off of that energy at shows.
What should labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?
Matt: They should know we're playing metal because we love it - not to appeal to any body or any one style. Death of Kings is about ripping music with a message of anger towards the world and all of the horrible people that hide behind their masks of lies.
Scott: While this might be our first full-length album, we've spent years laying the ground work. We've been building a fan base and honing our chops - we're ready to release the flood of riffs.
What plans do you have for the near future as a band?
Scott: Hit the ground running with the single Hell Comes to Life at the beginning of March, and will be following up with the full-length in early summer. Really just looking forward to finally getting some of these songs out there - we've been sitting on some for quite a while.
Matt: Once the album, tentatively titled Kneel Before None is released in June, we'll be hitting the road and doing a solid US East coast tour - soon after, we hope to go out west, and we hope to some day venture across the pond to Europe. Our frontman, Matson, never stops talking about his time touring Europe with his old hardcore band, The Despised. He's aching to get back over there, and so are we.
Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?
Our bandcamp is the best spot to check out all of our catalog - new and old. Follow us and our record label, Boris Records on Facebook for updates and teasers from the upcoming album!
Major thanks for the interview - we hope to see you in the near future while on tour!