Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.
Evgeniy had the concept of Red Cain for some time, looking for a melodic European metal project that could serve as a platform for telling dark and complex Faustian stories. After, it was a matter of finding musicians that were able to build on the concept of the band as a storytelling vehicle and shared the same morbid mysticism. Initially the project was very close-knit among founders Evgeniy Zayarny, Nik Ryzhenkov, and Samuel Royce and reflected their own personal mythologies and worldview, especially the Slavic/Eastern European leaning. Growing from that platform, Red Cain expanded to include new narratives and influences which were lit up by the addition of new members Rogan McAndrews and his prog rock background and groovy, complex bass lines, and William Lancaster, creating epic and twisted orchestral landscapes. The recent addition of guitarists Brendan Doll and Allan Chuley has brought some fantastic flair and intricate, lethal guitarwork to Red Cain. The current incarnation of the band is all of these influences mixed with a lot of vodka, shaken and stirred.
How would you describe your style? Which bands influenced your music?
Musically, we sit somewhere between power metal and heavy metal, with the lead guitar flair of the latter, along with the punchy rhythms and catchy choruses of the former, but heavier and with more groove. However, we started as an industrial/gothic metal band, so there are ambient elements and interesting chord progressions in our music, as well as darker subject matter. With the additions of the new guitarists, we have really stepped up the riffage and lead guitarwork, so Red Cain as a band is guitar-driven. We are heavily inspired by bands such as Blind Guardian, Kamelot, Aria, that create compelling storylines that weave in and out of the tracks. We want the listener to look at one of our tracks as something that can be explored further with every listen, so there definitely is abstraction and a focus on snapshots, imagery in our work, but underneath all of that, there is both musically and lyrically a story that takes place. We want the listener to discover and respond to that story. And of course, we want to present that story with some swagger, with some cohones. You won’t get sappy vanilla ballads from us – every song will have a darker component, because all the best stories are frightening in some capacity.
Why should a metalhead buy your demos/albums?
We have an interesting hybrid mix of metal that should appeal to a variety of fans. Our material is heavy, has groove and strong technical elements, flair in solos, but also an obvious dynamic juxtaposition between these sections and orchestral and acoustic interludes and breakdowns. The same is true for vocals – aggressive raspy and thrashy vocal lines share the space with introspective, more lyrical melodies that draw the listener into the lyrical content. Lyrically, the tracks are layered, and new meaning can be found with each listen; there are various references to literature and mythology that could be interesting to many metal fans who look for meaning in the music.
What have you released so far and how were your releases received by the public/media?
We have released our 4-track EP for review to media outlets, as well as our first single “Hiraeth” and the accompanying lyric video. It has been received extremely well. The reviews are placing us within the 8-9/10 range, which is huge for a first release by a new band. There has been some very humbling praise and comparisons to quite a few of our inspirations, such as Kamelot, Type O Negative, Steven Wilson, and others. It’s fantastic to see that so many listeners are able to relate to our music and find something new and interesting in it. The lyric video has been a big hit as well, with great feedback and worldwide exposure. Our track “Dead Aeon Requiem” – a free stream with the album preorder – recently got over 13,000 likes on Instagram, which was also fantastic to see. In all, we’re extremely flattered and fired up by the attention we have received, and will push even harder to realize our vision.
Do you play live as well? How's your live activity so far?
We’ve done 8 shows over the last 7 months so far, with three more coming up in November, December, and January. Again, the response has been great, with plenty of people showing up to experience us live. We’re about to refresh our setlist with some new material to keep things interesting for the core group of fans who make it to every show. Merch has been selling well too – we’ve just ordered another batch of Red Cain shirts, so things are looking up! Our next goal live is to implement a bigger, cooler, more theatrical show using a variety of elements (fog, lights, costumes) to make it a more thematic and immersive experience.
What should labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?
We’re all about the clash between the ancient and modern, the traditional and the innovative, the past and the future. Thematically, this is a huge part of where we are at as a band and the subject matter of our material, but it also drives our music. What we want to achieve is a rawness, unpredictability but combined with sonically pleasing, catchy even, elements, to keep the listener on the edge of their seat, “use hooks but push boundaries”, as per one review. We have skilled musicians and bring strong technical metal elements to the music, but make sure to temper that with a variety of stylistic elements and influences in order to make all our tracks sound different from one another. To quote the review, “What works best for Red Cain are those spots in between the sheer intensity of what’s on display – a proper dynamic understanding of quieter introspection, something that makes Opeth and Steven Wilson so brilliant.”
Another key point about Red Cain is storytelling. We want to tell compelling stories, on various themes, with a variety of influences. We want to use music as a force of discovery, war through concepts. Existence is made of stories. The story of Cain is above all, a great and tragic saga and an allegory for humanity. We want to be the serpent whispering in your ear.
What plans do you have for the near future as a band?
We are focusing on promoting our EP and establishing our band in the public eye this year. We have a new concept and some excellent material in the works for next year for our first full-length album, which promises to be killer! We are pushing onward with our live shows as well, doing on average one a month. We are currently working on planning a music video for one of our tracks and will have remixes coming out by various artists, as well as a visual art contest.
Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?
Facebook.com/redcainofficial . We are also on redcain.bandcamp.com, where you can buy our single and pre-order our CD. Our single is also on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, and various other platforms, and our album will be there as well when it comes out in November. We also have a variety of videos on Youtube.