Interview with Dan Lovett-Horn of Promethium

Promethium is a band that through an excellent and acclaimed EP and album plus a reputation for excellent and impressive live shows that has more than earned their right to be spoken as one of the best emerging metal/rock bands in the UK. With the band preparing and working on their next album we thought it was about time to catch up with guitarist Dan Lovett-Horn to find out more and reveal more about a band that will soon be making a very distinct mark on UK rock.

Welcome guys and thank you for sharing your time with us.

Could you first introduce the band members?

Many thanks dude. On vocals we have Gaz McGahon, Guitars, Dan Lovett-Horn and Rossi, Bass Barry Mills, Drums Allan Gardener.

How long has the band been going and how did you all meet?

The band started around five years ago. I was planning a studio project after my last band was disbanding.  I met up with some musicians friends and all of a sudden we had a new band. Many members later and we are still here.

Promethium is not your first experience in a band then?

It’s quite weird actually. I had always wanted to play in a band with Rossi and after much pestering I finally had the opportunity when he left his last band Desolate. Gary had been an old band mate from our school years and he had just returned from London after his last band had come to an end. Barry is the frontman in the fantastic rock band Massive Wagons and his main reason for joining was he was missing playing the bass.  Allan is the newest member from a now defunct experimental band.

Has metal been the sound you have created as musicians or is there a touch of Ministry in your journey to date if you know what I mean haha?

My previous band was influenced by 80’s rock and the music I was starting to write was going in a far heavier direction. So there was a change of direction because my own style of playing dictated that the music was becoming heavier. I must admit that Rossi is the one who brings the Ministry side to us. I guess it’s his old man influence.

Your debut release was Tribute to the Fallen in 2009, tell us about that initial acclaimed EP.

It was really great as we knew we were onto something cool, and as soon as it was released the reviews were very positive. The radio airplay then started, and we knew we had to crack on getting the album recorded.

It seems things between that and your first album two years later did not accelerate as one anticipated for the band is that fair to say?

That is fair.  What is funny is the album was recorded very quickly, however the delay came from the manufacturing end and also the release date got altered a couple of times. Originally everything was ready for April 2010. There were delays and complications we couldn’t control.

That album was the excellent Welcome to The Institution which came out last year. How has that been received?

Overall it’s been good. We have had a lot of positive feedback and some great reviews. This in turn has also been helped by our debut music video “Visions” which has been banned on most music channels. We did two versions, one to get banned and create publicity and the safe one as a fallback for, and both got banned. It would seem what we consider acceptable the outside world does not.

As with any release there are always going to be people who dislike a recording, however we have found that even with negative reviews, people check us out, and so it works in our favour.  The artwork could have been better but in all honesty you don’t judge a book by its cover so why would you with an album.

The album is a powerful and varied release, what was the inspiration behind it?

The concept behind the album was to make a recording of a new kind of metal, one that fuses a varied style of influences and isn’t bothered about current bandwagons.

As mentioned Welcome To The Institution is diverse in sound suggesting varied influences within the band, is that so and what are your most inspiring ones?

Big influences overall are Metallica, Megadeth, Annihilator, Testament and 2pac 

Months on from its release what are the things about Welcome to The Institution you feel could have been better and alternately give you the deepest pride?

Overall we love the album. My biggest pride is the fact that it’s an album created with friends.

What have you learned from making it that will stand you in good stead for future recordings?

We’ve definitely learnt the meaning of Pre Production, and that’s something we are doing heavily for the next album. Also learnt what I need to do in regards to recording tips for more varied sounds.

How does songwriting work within the band?

We have now got it down to a fine art. I right the bulk of the music. Rossi then re-writes it, and then together as a band we arrange it. The final piece of the puzzle comes when Gaz sits down to process his thoughts and write the lyrics.

Is Promethium a democratic or is there a final voice on certain aspects of the band?

That’s a bit of a weird one. Yes we are a full band however we allow certain people to have a final voice depending on the matter.

You are currently working on your new album, what surprises and treats are we going to discover within in?

It’s going to be awesome. I have friend who turned up at the studio the other day and literally said the songs were jumping out of the speakers at him. We have really gone back to basics on this album, looked at every riff, every solo, every drum beat and fill, and every vocal melody.  It is going be an album that people will take note of and I am certain it will open the gates for us.  We have really gone back to our musical roots and this is where that album comes from.

Are there any definite songs you can reveal for it and an album title for the project?

We have decided not to release the title yet, but current song titles are Believer, Gunslinger, Wont Break me, and Plagued by Evil.

Apart from the album what plans do you have for 2012, plenty of gigs?

2012 is a busy year with the first half packed with gigs all over the country including the fantastic Future Perfect festival in May in Manchester. The second half of the year will be studio based so that we can look a spring 2013 release for album two.

How hard is it to keep outside life from distracting and coming before the life of Promethium for you guys?

Music for all of us all is a passion. We love it whether it is gigging or in the studio or in rehearsal. We all work full time and if we didn’t love doing this it would be difficult to manage both things. We just don’t see it as a difficulty its part of our life and we love doing it.

Many thanks again for chatting with us.

Can we end with a couple of in depth questions…firstly which band member would you be most reluctant to share a broken down elevator with?

Rossi – he would geek you death before the oxygen ran out – although that might be a good thing suffocating in a lift sounds like a horrible way to die.

And lastly which of the band has the darkest embarrassment to hide and what is it?

If you buy a copy of our album when it comes out the sleeve notes will tell all!!

Read the review of   Welcome to The Institutionhttp://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2011/08/30/promethium-%E2%80%93-welcome-to-the-institution/

RingMaster Review 04/04/2012

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Job for a Cowboy: Demonocracy

Job for a Cowboy return with a new line-up, new ideas, a continued evolution in musical maturity, and in Demonocracy their new album, one of the most formidable releases so far this year. The sheer power and quality to the songwriting and its realisation means that even if you are not a fan or the songs within the album do not grab you the musicianship and technical excellence is still unmissable and undeniable. Demonocracy is not a put on and listen once or twice and it clicks type of release, though for many it will do just that, this album demands your focus, attention, and at times your patience before divulging the ingenuity and excellent varied construct within the brutal onslaught it consumes with.

Released April 10th via Metal Blade Records the album follows up the widely acclaimed Ruination of 2009 by moving all aspects of the sound and songwriting of the Arizona quintet forward. From listening to Demonocracy it is evident there was no temptation to rest on their laurels even a little after such a strong and deep affection thrown over the previous album. For sure the change of personal has brought a natural change, the fact that songs now contain solos and at times the guitars take the lead suggests that, but there is an apparent organic shift too, a determined intent to find a further progression to themselves as musicians and the band as a whole.

The time between the two albums has seen the departure of guitarist Bobby Thompson and bassist Brent Riggs. Their replacements have not just come in to fill the slots but from the evidence on Demonocracy have instantly added a new dimension to compliment what their predecessors and the band had already impressively created. Cephalic Carnage bassist Nick Schendzielos and session guitarist for Despised Icon Tony Sannicandro initially were brought in as touring musicians but the chemistry that was immediate from playing and the songwriting ideas they brought into the band on the 2011 Gloom EP saw the arrangement become a permanent one. Alongside vocalist Jonny Davy, guitarist Al Glassman, and drummer Jon “Charn” Rice the pair has added a different dynamic which has also created another within the band as a whole to make their new release something that grabs the attention on every level.

From the opening onslaught of Children Of Deceit, Job for a Cowboy unleash their recognisable death metal/metal power but with a fuller and one can almost say more elaborate sound and texture. The track scrapes flesh from the ear as it thrusts its muscular riffs and full intensity through seeking to consume the senses but it is veined by guitars, melodies, and technical manipulations that are as scorched and venomous as you will find anywhere.  As mentioned now solos appear on tracks and though something almost unexpected and new for the band it is an easy and impressive fit.

As always listening to Job for a Cowboy is a testing and challenging experience, they are a band that requires a deliberate focus rather than a passing listen to appreciate all their attributes and this album is no different but the new progression to their sound and the additives brought from the new members and the determined ideas of the band as a whole are openly audible and enjoyable and again understood and complimented by returning producer Jason Suecof (The Black Dahlia Murder, Whitechapel). Tracks like the excellent Nourishment Through Blood, Imperium Wolves with its excellent cello/keys ending though the song as a whole blisters and abuses perfectly, and the tumultuously intense Black Discharge, leave one numb, bruised and fully satisfied from being obliterated by a band that has found something very flavoursome to add to their already mighty sound.

Tongueless And Bound and The Manipulation Stream are the two songs that really ignited the most on the album, both slicing though the senses with technical precision whilst tearing the wounds wider with a pummelling that aches rather than numbs. Every track on the album is immense but this pair offer extra sparks from the guitar work of Glassman and Sannicandro through to the dehabilitating rhythms of Rice and Schendzielos. Davy too has upped his game on the album offering more variety to his delivery whilst still spewing and spitting the politically and socially themed lyrics as vehemently as ever.

Demonocracy will not be the album of the year for everyone as the band demand much more than most are willing or able to give with their hungry and intense sounds but it is hard to think of a death metal album as fulfilling and inspired as this for a long time. Job for a Cowboy might not be a flavour for everyone but with the new album they offer much more for many more making it at least a definite investigation.

RingMaster 04/04/2012

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