Though there is a strong and decent wave of melodic punk bands around there are not many which stand out from the crowd consistently. One exception comes in the vibrant and unique shape of Chicago band Athel. Recently the band dropped their debut album Open Your Eyes To Society, its impressive tracks a blaze of vibrant and completely infectious rock/punk sounds. Needing to know about this aural contagion and the band itself we had the great fortune and opportunity to fire off questions to bassist Comron Fouladi to learn more.
Hi Comron and welcome to The Ringmaster Review, many thanks for talking to us,
How did you all meet and when did Athel emerge?
I met Cristian in middle school and Justin just from the local band scene we were in. I introduced the two.
Who are the biggest influences to you as a musician and maybe for the Athel sound?
My favorite band of all time and inspiration is CKY.
In our review of your great debut album Open Your Eyes To Society we said the band and release was one to stand out from what seems plenty of good new punk bands but generally uniformal in sound. What is it you have which you feel sets you apart?
The CD doesn’t stick to one mold. It’s not cookie cutter music. One song will be really punk or metal, then we have something like a classic rock song come then something like modern music mixed with 90s vocal melodies.
Did the band evolve into something more than maybe you expected or reach to where you exactly envisaged?
Definitely, we started working on some of these songs when we were first starting out. I was hoping to build a local following and have some fun with some small tours. I didn’t know we would later be signing a deal and releasing them in stores worldwide. I think my kids will all think I’m a liar with all the tour stories I will tell them.
As we have already mentioned it tell us about the album and your hopes going in to its creation?
I was hoping to put out something different, I don’t think there has been many good bands to come up in the past few years and I’ve just been really pissed about modern hits so we tried to create something different haha.
How long did Open Your Eyes To Society take to make?
We started writing this in 2009. We started recording in November 2010 and finished Feb 2012.
Was it already primarily composed and written before going into the studio or grew within those creative walls?
All the songs were done before the studio with multiple demos other then These are the Times, Kara’s Carousel, and Me, Myself, and I.
How does the songwriting work within the band?
Justin will write a guitar part and vocal melody, then bring it to the table and it evolves into a full song with many ideas front here.
What predominantly inspires your songs and lyrics?
Appreciation of life is something we always talk about in our music. So many people say they want to kill themselves all the time but really the chance of life happening is a trillion to 1. You’ve came this far and are now alive might as well try and make it the best you can.
The album is your first release since signing with Mortal Music. How did the link up with the label come about?
From building a local following of 500+ kids at every hometown show and then spending 300 dates on the road one year helped as well meant a few labels took attention to Athel but I felt Mortal was right and I’m extremely happy to work with those guys.
We called the album…Mildly aggressive, vaguely intrusive, and wholly infectious…fair comment?
Definitely! We wanted this album to be our angsty album.
You previously released a couple of EPs which drew strong acclaim too but how has your sound changed if at all since starting out?
Our sound hasn’t changed much just the writing sounds like it has matured.
The album marks the band as one which is intent on giving full pleasure and riotous fun, one imagines your live shows are exactly the same?
I’ve always been a fan of putting on the best show possible. If you ever come to an Athel show I promise you won’t be let down!
What makes a great show for you?
Seeing the people unite at a concert to have fun and enjoy life. It’s an escape from the modern bullshit we have to deal with.
You have shared stages with the likes of Chris Cornell, Gwar, CKY, and The Audition. Anyone you would sell your grannies to play with?
I would love to tour with Escape the Fate. They have always been so awesome and our fans love each other.
Any chance we might see you guys over this side of the big water in the near future?
I’m hoping in 2013. We need to be there soon!
What is next for Athel?
Rob Zombies guitar player Riggs has a new band called Scum of the Earth, we will be doing an East coast tour with them August 31st through almost all of September.
Once more thank you for sparing time for us.
Any last words to end on you would like to share?
Thank you guys. Please have us back again soon. As for last words, no one ever settle for anything less then what you want in life.
Read the review of Open Your Eyes To Society @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2012/05/18/athel-open-your-eyes-to-society/
The RingMaster Review 10/07/2012
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