L – Part One of the L.O.V.E saga was released in February. We’re working on “O” which will be released in the beginning of summer. But you might not have known that the L.O.V.E saga has an evil twin called H.A.T.E …
H.A.T.E will consist of 4 EPs, just like L.O.V.E. They will even contain the same songs. So what’s the difference? Well H.A.T.E is the rock version of L.O.V.E. Four rock bands will make one EP each. First out is British band Ball of Mayhem. I managed to get a little interview with Dave Chrisp from the band, and here’s what he’s got to say about their upcoming EP “H”.
Hi David! You’re part of the rock band Ball of Mayhem that is about to release the first EP “H” in the H.A.T.E quadrology. We’re so excited for the release! Tell us a little bit about your band!
Hi.Well Ball Of Mayhem started about ten years ago then under the name Slugfist by my brother Terry (Lead vocals, rhythem guitar) and Stephen (Bass). Since then it has had a few line up changes. I joined about three years ago and our Drummer Jack and Lead guitarist Zac joined just last year. We are all from and are based in the North East of England. Our name kind of represents the sheer variety in our sound, while all of our songs are what you would call heavy there is a big mix of catchy power metal songs with soaring vocal harmonies to out and out stomping metal with monster riffs! We like to keep our sets so you just dont know what is coming next.
How did you get involved in the project?
Well I’d like to say it was something rock and roll like we got talking backstage at Glastonbury or something but it was actually through Facebook. I saw Sofia’s post asking for Metal bands to be involved in a project so I replied to that and here we are!
Sofia’s music is quite different from Ball of Mayhem’s. Have you listened to Sofia’s music before and what was it like to interpret the songs?
Yeah I was familiar with Sofia’s music for a long time before this project. I’m a fan of Bernard Butler and first heard of Sofia after they did “It’s just love” together and have always kept up with what Sofia has been doing.
It was a lot of fun working on the songs, we got to work as soon as we received her EP. Me and Tez (Terry) just sat in his conservatory listening to it over a few beers and straightaway had a good idea as to what form each song would take. Once we started arranging them it was pretty obvious that they were going to work really well as metal/rock songs.
Usually it’s the other way around, singer/songwriters that turn rock songs into sweet mellow versions. Do you think it’s harder turning an acoustic song into a rock song or why do you think that is?
I dont think it is, in a way I think it gave us more scope for arrangements as metal/rock is so broad and there are so many different styles of it that can be applied. We were able to add to the basic structure of the songs while not making them unrecognizable from the originals. It would of course be easy just to speed everything up, put loads of guiars on and scream all the way through but we wanted to keep them as “Proper songs” so we went for that big metal anthem sound on all of them. I think if you are going to do a cover you really need to put your own stamp on it otherwise what is the point?
How is this EP different from what you usually play?
While we do have catchy songs in our set I would say that these are generally more melodic than what would would normally do. We would perhaps keep a catchy melody/hook for a chorus or a break but these songs have that throughout. The subject matter is not something we would normally sing about either! I dont think any of us would dare turn up to a practice and say “Hey I’ve wrote this really heartfelt song about a love lost that I want us to try…..”
Which is your favorite of the 4 songs and why?
Tough question as personally I have favourite bits of them all. Sofia’s versions I’d say Nothing quite so gentle, it just sounds like a single and is a great vocal, great melody, this was probably the easiest to cover.
Our versions I’d have to say Bittersweet bliss, the chorus is a really nice lift after the almost spoken verses, this one really rips along. But the intro to Everyones favourite concubine is a real band favourite, when it kicks in it is just huge with Jacks thumping doubles on the drums with the pounding guitars yet still has that nice little riff that is being picked on the original. We actually had an idea for a song that we never used that started like this and it just fitted perfect when we tried it out. We’re planning on playing this live in a couple of weeks as a set closer and we’ve already had people pop in at practice saying how awesome it sounds.
Listen to a preview here: Bittersweet Bliss version by Ball of Mayhem
What’s next for Ball of Mayhem?
We’ve just came first in a Battle Of The Bands competition which was great for us, we are starting to get more widespread gigs now which we hope continues as we are starting to get a nice little fanbase now. We’re hitting the studio to record our next EP next month which we plan to release later this year. We have some really big songs that we cant wait to get recorded.
After that who knows, maybe take over Sweden?!, I’ve heard it’s nice there.
You can listen to Ball of Mayhem here: www.myspace.com/ballofmayhem