Lifecycle Interview

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Our pleasure, thank you!  By the way, my name is Scott Pustilnick (Bass, Keyboards, Vocals)

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started and what brought you all together? LIFECYCLE is a hard-hitting Alternative Metal band based out of Jackson, NJ. LIFECYCLE features Asim Rizvi (4Karma), John Soden (Legion), Joe Viggiano (formerly Ataraxia), Kevin Hightower (formerly Noosphere), and  myself, Scott Pustilnick (formerly MCA recording Artist Familiar 48).

Have you been involved in other bands before? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

Everyone in the band has been in other bands to some degree.  Personally, I was in a band signed to MCA records (When that label existed).  All of us used our prior knowledge and hard work ethic to get the band off the ground.  The direction is a million times better with this band than with other bands.  Very focused!

What inspired the band name?

We actually had the song title “LifeCycle” picked out before we named the band, “LifeCycle”…A Black Sabbath – “Black Sabbath” kind of deal. As we wrote more music, we realized a lot of what we were writing focused around aspects of life itself. When we realized the motto of that song was on point with what we generally write about, a light bulb went off.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

I wanted to play with musicians that had the same vision. The vision is to write great songs that can appeal to a massive audience.  In addition, we love to entertain so finding a group of guys that are totally dedicated and are passionate about music was really important.  The band writes 3-4 minute songs that are have heavy guitar riffs but offer melodic vocals.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

The band is very new.  The debut single “Lifecycle” just dropped on all digital media stores.  We all still love each other! Lol.

How would you say your sound is evolving so far?

Due to the band being new, the evolution is tough to call out.  I can tell you that song writing is very easy with this band.  There is NO shortage of material and we constantly have new content ready to release.

Has the growth of the band and its sound from birth been more of an organic movement or more the band deliberately exploring  new things?

Completely organic, thank you tiny baby Jesus!  We have 5 members with 5 voices.  We write what is best for the song and if it isn’t broken, we don’t fix it!  The sound is natural and nothing is forced.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

The band has a real good formula for creating music.  I think the inspiration is really working together.  Everyone is very close and we really enjoy being around each other and having fun.  Due to this inspiration, the band decided to make a YouTube series that documents this fact.  The name of the YouTube series is called “A Day in the LifeCycle” and it can be found on our YouTube Channel.  People seem to love it and we have way too much fun making it.  New Episodes drop every 2 weeks.

Is there a particular process to the band’s  songwriting?

Most of the time, our talented guitarists (Kevin, Joe) bring killer riffs to the table. We then sit in a room and work out the music portion.  We feed off of each other’s ideas so I really believe we inspire each other during this process.  At that point, once we have a legit framework of a song, we listen and listen and listen.  It’s organic and it changes and gets tweaked.  We let the song dictate the path. This is really important for us.  If the song calls for a part, it’s getting done.  If the song doesn’t need a blazing fast shredder solo……it’s not part of the song.   Asim (lead singer) writes most of the words in the band and he is also a part of the creative process with the music.  The method works and we are very happy doing things this way.

Where are, more often than not, lyrical inspirations drawn from?

As for what LifeCycle songs are about……Music in general can mean different things to different people. One person’s interpretation of lyrics/ song can be completely different from another person’s. That is part of the beauty of music. So Asim will not typically like giving a song a definitive meaning because the way he sees it and writes it, may be interpreted another way by someone else. Doesn’t mean anyone is wrong, it’s just their perspective.  However, as a songwriter Asim typically likes to focus on aspects of life itself. Love, lust, greed, vulnerability, purpose, life and death are all common themes in our music, all served with a side of metal.

Give us some background to your latest release, that first single.

The debut single, “Lifecycle” dropped on 1/15/2020!  It’s everywhere.  You look at a digital store and it is there for the taking.  You can also grab it on Sound cloud or YouTube if you don’t subscribe to one of the big four.  The plan is to drop the acoustic version of “Lifecycle” at the end of Feb 2020 and then follow it up with the next single, “Burnout” mid-April 2020.  Constantly new content coming!

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

We enter into the studio one thousand present ready to record.  We don’t develop new parts during the recording process.  Here is why: we have recorded our song prior every time we write a new part.  Organically, we have a dozen or some versions from step 1 to the last step along with way , already recorded on someone’s phone.  By the time we get in the studio , we are ready to work and no longer write.

Tell us about the live side to the band, presumably a big favorite aspect of the band?

We’ll do it live!!! The band is super high energy.  No one just stands there and looks down at their instrument.  We see it with other bands and it doesn’t work for us.  The band is excited to play so when we hit the stage its go time.  Constant movement and having fun.  We do not take ourselves so seriously…..come see us.  We will make sure you have a great time and are not bored to death!

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there for new bands?

Yes there are opportunities everywhere I believe.  The secret is not only working hard but being smart about it.  Don’t waste your time with anything that is not moving the band in the right direction.  Think about it and have a plan.  Without a plan or direction, there is wasted time and that is the most precious resource we all have.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date?

In a world where we all live our lives through the internet, how has it particularly aided the band?

It’s great! It allows people we have never met an opportunity to see the band, hear the band, laugh at the band, and either like or hate the band.  Our episodic YouTube Series, “A Day in the Lifecycle” is doing great and people seem to love it. Without YouTube, no one would be able to enjoy the comedy side of the band along with the behind the scenes footage of live shows.

Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success or is it more that bands struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

If bands struggle with the internet and social media, I would assume that they don’t quite understand one important thing…..This is a marathon, not a sprint.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Thank you!  We love writing and creating and playing our music for everyone.  If you REALLY want to learn more about the band, go to YouTube and pull up our YouTube series called “A Day in the Lifecycle”.  I know I mentioned it prior, but it’s a great way to see why Joe hates white bread, why Asim is sponsored by Hi-Chew, why John doesn’t talk and on and on. Thanks for the opportunity to talk!

-Scott Pustilnick (LifeCycle)

Check Lifecycle out further@ …

https://www.lifecycleband.com   https://twitter.com/lifecycleband   https://www.instagram.com/lifecycleband   https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCN4sHHIMmtMno__3t9wl4eA/featured

Pete RingMaster 27/02/2020

Ender – Descolada EP

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Hailing out of New Jersey, Ender is a new proposition to us but one on the suggestion of their new EP Descolada thatis sure to have an eager following in their homeland. Consisting of four tracks which are as voraciously intensive as they are aggressively magnetic, the release is an attention grabbing encounter which soon has imagination and passions enlisted to its annihilatory provocation. Fusing metal with a healthy spite of hardcore, plenty of other loud whispers of styles engaged too, the release presents sound and songs which are not exactly openly original but do have a vein of ingenuity and imagination which instantly pulls a spotlight upon the band.

Formed in the May of 2009, Ender took little time in recording a debut demo before unleashing their live presence on their DIY three week The Bootyshorts And V-Necks Tour. In no time they were growing a potent fanbase around their home state, which the Bergen County quintet gave an extra spark to after a slight line-up change with their first EP. Released via Florida-based Eulogy Recordings, This Is Revenge made a sizeable mark with its release in 2010, an unleashing further supported by headlining tours either side of its release where the band shared stages with the likes of Float Face Down, Of Salt And Swine, Timelines, and Above All Fallen. The past few years has seen Ender strike further across the US, touring with bands such as Destruction Of A King, Catalepsy, Demolisher, and Legion. The new release sees the return of vocalist Joe Benducci, who left the band for a couple of years, alongside guitarists Sal Latrenta and Casey Conlon, bassist Mark Costa, and drummer Danny Lavarco. It is a formidable and gripping antagonist, a proposition rippling with the potential that could and should see Ender become a noted name well away from their country’s borders.

The self-released EP opens with Stunner and instantly coats ears and thoughts with an intrigue of guitar, its singular strain of almost DescoladaFrontmelancholic coaxing winding respectfully around the senses. Its lure is soon swamped by a weighty intensity steered by hellacious rhythms, savage riffs, and equally ferocious and compelling vocals. It is a staggering confrontation lyrically and aurally, enough for knees to buckle before its savage breath but a tempest which infuses a bewitching sonic enterprise within the storm. The band list Meshuggah and Korn in their likes and a union of the two in many way best describes the impressive opener.

The following Neuralyzer gives no respite, immediately seizing the now tenderised senses and treating them to a concentrated tsunami of barbarous rhythms and predacious riffery. Like its predecessor the track is an uncompromising and unrelenting corrosion but also like the first it pierces the intensive examination with fiery grooves, abrasing vocal variation, and sonic twists which never leaves a second as merely a savagely single minded persuasion. Though less immediate then the first track, it weaves and flirts with an addictive invention which only ignites the imagination further, its atmospheric and evocative textures colouring the thought provoking insurgency of word and sound.

Buhguul permeates ears and synapses next, its sonic irritancy a beguiling lead into the caustic passion of the song and its matching destructively honed sound. The guitars stir up air and anthemic bait with their twisted grooves and virulent riffs, both designs stalked with primal intent by the dark tones of bass and horde like rhythms. The vocals as ever come with their own malicious defiance and accusation, Benducci an imposing instigator of threat and intimidation able to command proceedings whether the song is in unbridled rage or as to the climax of the third song laying an uncluttered web of emotive manipulation. Lyrically song and release also show no restraint in their anger, each track violently honing in on personal or the widest targets with no mercy or olive branch offered, truth and reality the overriding intent.

The closing Pieces Of Silver is monstrous, the most brutal predator of the release, every flex of muscle, each twist of sonic ideation, and all warped vindictive grooves nasty and virulently riveting. The track brawls and bruises relentlessly, suffering its instinctive drive but again the band surprise and engross with swipes of striking unpredictability and fascinating imagination within the torturous incitement, though it is much more subtler than in the previous trio of songs.

Descolada is a thrilling and powerful encounter from a band ready to break out into the widest world of metal. Certainly their sound is poised and though there are many bands sculpting similar furies, Ender has a prowess and invention which promises to truly set them apart in a crowded world if given the chance.

The self-released Descolada is available @ http://endermetalnj.bandcamp.com/album/descolada now!

https://www.facebook.com/endermetalnj

8.5/10

RingMaster 30/04/2014

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Interview with Adar and Omut from Shturm

Though still really an undiscovered area outside of its borders the metal scene in Russia has a wealth of diverse and exiting bands that are slowly coming to light. One of the best comes in the powerful and impressive shape of blackened death metallers Shturm. They have just released their new album Karmaruna, an album that rages and rampages with a defined craft and refined thought. Having strongly enjoyed the album and intrigued to find out more about the band we had the pleasure of having twin guitarists/vocalists Adar and Omut from the band tell us more about Shturm and their album.

Hello and welcome to The Ringmaster Review, many thanks for talking to us.

Would you first introduce the band and its members?

Adar & Omut: Hi! Thank you for your questions! Now “Shturm” is 3 persons: Adar (vocals, guitar), Omut (guitar, clean vocal) and Petreno (drums)

When and how did the band first start?

Adar: The group “Shturm” has appeared early in 2003. I and Sinner (bass, vocal) had organized it. At that time we were playing “war black metal” which can be heard on demo “Shape Of Chaos”. A year later the debut album “Fresh Christian Meat” had been recorded. It wasn’t only a black metal album, there was much more death metal. In 2009 label FONO Ltd. released our second album “Kalahia”. It was a blackened death work. Our image was reflecting the influence of black metal.

What were the influences that led you to getting into making music and those that inspire you now?

Adar: First we were influenced by such groups as Marduk, Immortal, Hipocrisy. Later we couldn’t avoid the influence of such monsters as Nile and Behemoth. Now the influence of these bands is very low. Listening to our album “Karmaruna” everyone can notice there the influence of different groups. So it’s difficult to say exactly who has influenced us during its creation.

Your music has evolved deeply between your demo Shape of Chaos and debut album Fresh Christian Meat in 2004 and your excellent new album Karmaruna. How would you describe the change and maturity that has emerged?

Adar: Really, I don’t know how to answer this question. As the years roll by everything turns out of itself. The childish maximalism concerning the views about life, music and fashion disappears. The music horizons broaden and you want to compose more interesting, distinctive music. Hereby “Karmaruna” appeared. The symbiosis of styles and views about life. We couldn’t allow us to make such a bold album before but now the time has come to break musical ranks and to experiment.

You started out as a brutal black metal based band really originally as you said earlier, what was the thought behind the band at the time?

Adar: That’s right. At that time we were 17 and we were only interested in protest against society, religion (especially Christianity), foundations, all these fops listening sugary pop music. We were like a bundle of nerves, drinking a lot, haggling. All this was reflected in our music – fast, raw, aggressive. It was a true black metal concerning all: views about life, texts, behaviour, attitude to people. We hated those who differed from us and we thought we were the strongest. We even had a song “Overpeople” which speaks for itself.

It seems that when you Omut, joined the band and struck up a strong understanding and combination with Adar that things really began for the band and the new defined shape and direction to your sound. Is that how it was?

Omut: After my appearance in the band much has changed as compared with previous course of things. But changes weren’t revolutionary. I and Adar, we were developing in the direction which was interesting for us, we were creating “Shturm” and we continue to do it. I think changes were gradual and logical.

So the change as much simply a natural evolution of the music as it was down to this reassessing of things then?

Omut: We always try to generate some unexpected, unpredictable decisions within the scope of our musical and lyrical ideas. That’s why the development of the band and of all that connected with it can be considered as planned (because all is often carefully planned) and spontaneous (because musical ideas for a new material are a great surprise even for us).

As mentioned Shturm started out as a black metal band and has evolved through death metal to an even more brutal form though without losing your skilled intricacies and creativity. Have you found you have lost a few fans from the evolution though obviously gained a great many more?

Adar: Oh, yes! Having broken through the ranks of death-black metal we have been subjected to criticism by our old fans. We were reproached for being pop and fashion oriented. But we don’t anger as it’s not true and we prove at our concerts that we are metal group as before but now we are not interested in playing only within the frames of several styles.

What was the metal scene like in Russia over the first few years and did it help or hinder your progress?

Omut: Metal scene of extreme genres in Russia has always been not impressive especially during the times of the formation of our group. It can be explained by the legacy of ban on this music made in The Soviet Union. While all the world was developing in the sphere of heavy music we had a sever ban on it in our motherland. At the early 2000 extreme metal scene represented an embryo under the influence of impressive bands from foreign countries. All this had a great influence on the lack of colouring and originality of Russian heavy metal. All the same we still loved such groups as Drama and Ragor. Russian heavy metal always makes us glad – Aria, Black Coffee, Master, Legion. We love this music and surely it has influenced on us.

It seems now that music from your homeland and surrounding countries is finding a wider market and attention, is that the case?

Omut: Of course, today there are more interesting Russian bands of different styles within the ranks of metal. Some of them are famous and needed abroad and it makes us glad.

You have had a few line-up changes over the years, how does that affect a band when it happens?

Adar: Line-up changes are always disagreeable. It turned out so that people have never left “Shturm” voluntary. We must dismiss them because of their futile approach to the work or we couldn’t simply find the common language. New people bring changes which are almost always good. I hope “Shturm” will have a stable, solid membership ready to compose for life and to do all for the band development.

You have just released your excellent new album Karmaruna as we mentioned, and your most creative release to date. What are you most proud of about it?

Omut: Maybe it’s a subjective judgment but we are proud of many traits and features of “Karmaruna”. The material was composed in unrepresentative atmosphere – we were discussing the finished riffs, ideas and drafts together and we were making the arrangements. That has had an influence on that the album turned out varied concerning style ranks. We are satisfied with both music and texts which gained our own specificity.

Tell us about the album title.

Omut: This is a symbiosis of two words that we wanted to call our next two albums after “Kalagia” – “Karma” and “Runa”. With the lapse of time we decided not to be in a hurry to release the double album and we created the material for “Karmaruna”. Karma is the law of cause and effect in which Buddhists trust. Runa in our interpretation is a sign, display. So, “Karmaruna” is this is how the fate or the karma of a being shows up in the world. In the form of rune signs can be recognized in trees, rain, love, war. According to the law of Karma the seeds of our past actions germinate in our current life and form it. So, as we understand it “Karmaruna” is the life, all around.

What does it offer that those still unaware of your music will find hard to resist?

Omut: I think people with different musical tastes in metal will be able to find something interesting for them in our album. So, the fans of heavy metal can enjoy melodics, the connoisseurs of black and death will like energy and speed. The sappiness of solos and the richness of drum parts make our music resemble to progressive metal. So, “Karmaruna” can be a very interesting for metalheads with different preferences. I’m too modest, aren’t I? 😉

How long has Karmaruna been in the making?

Adar: It took about half a year to compose the material for “Karmaruna”. It took much time to try different arrangements, riffs and words but it’s worth the effort.

 Did the album come out exactly how you imagined it before going into the studio or did it change during the recording process to surprise you?

Adar: Coming at the studio we had a strict plan of actions, almost all the arrangements were recorded on demo that’s why we needed only to record it with better sound quality. So, there were few changes during the recording and all passed as we had planned it. But experimented recording the vocal and it turned out quite different from our plans.

How does the songwriting happen within the band?

Omut: The songs for “Kalagin” were composed discretely by Adar and me. After that they were united in album playlist with few changes. It was a different thing with “Karmaruna” the material was composed by Adar and me but it weren’t finished songs. Raw material was sifted through and saturated with unexpected arrangements by me, Petreno and Adar. Drums and arrangements (and some riffs) of Petreno who took a very active part in composition enriched a lot the sounding of the album.

Your songs and lyrics are often related to and refer too, quoting from your bio, “…the atmosphere of ethnic music, the heritage of Maya and the nations of Oceania, bearing the wisdom and grandeur of the old ones…” Can you elaborate on this?

Omut: This characteristic can be applied partially only to the material of “Kalagia”. The texts for this album represents our interpretations of legends, traditions and mystic cults of “Buddhist” Tibet. On the text side “Karmaruna” became more wide – most of songs speak not about something far and mystic (as before) but about something vital and close to each person. The base is our modest reasoning on the basis of the Buddhist philosophy. Besides the album reveals the themes of patriotism, our private feelings about everyday life.

 What is it about the subject and themes that connect with you the most?

Omut: All about what we sing excite us to a considerable degree. The past of our nation, our private feelings, reasoning about happiness and suffering based on the covenant of Buddhist teachers. All this is important and impressive for us.

You have a reputation for powerful and memorable live shows I am told, this is always a special event you like to bring to your fans?

Omut: We try to push ourselves to the limit giving concerts. This is our way to express live our feelings and ideas born during our albums work. We try to make our show energetic and emotional. We had a different image before. Now we are disposed to the individuality and hope to surprise more those who give us much attention at out concerts.

Have you gigs lined-up to promote the album?

Adar: Yes, we plan concerts to promote “Karmaruna”. For the present it will be the concerts in Russia and CIS, but we hope to travel farther.

What is next for Shturm?

Adar: I think the future will be more interesting for us and for those who appreciate our previous work. Until we live “Shturm” lives. There will be new songs, concerts, clips. I hope we’ll visit England with concerts. Of course it’s not easy but it’s worth doing! We plan the release of a new clip for one of the songs of “Karmaruna”, the recording of EP which will contain one new song and some interesting compositions known by metalheads and connoisseurs of early “Shturm”. And of course the new album which creation has already begun.

Thank you for taking time to talk with us, very much appreciated.

Would you like to end with some words for your ever growing army of fans?

Adar & Omut: Thank you for your questions and your interest in “Shturm”! We wish every success and prosperity to your portal! We express our gratitude to those who like our music – thank you for being with us! Those who only begin to familiarize themselves with our music – welcome to our world, symbiosis of black, death, thrash, heavy and something else…I’ll be damned if I know!:)))

Follow “Shturm”, everything is just beginning. The most interesting is ahead!

Stay heavy!

Read the review of Karmaruna @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2012/04/17/shturm-karmaruna/

The RingMaster Review 02/05/2012

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