Interview: Chris Evans from Lord Dying

Before hitting the stage supporting Cancer Bats, Siôn sat down for a Chat with Chris Evans, axe man of Lord Dying.


First of all man, how are you doing?

 “Yeah dude, really good thanks.”


Is this your first time in Exeter? What do you think of it so far?

 “Yeah man, our first time. Driving through earlier today, it seems really nice. We haven’t really been able to get out much yet.”


You are currently on tour with Cancer Bats. How have the shows been so far?

 “Very good. A lot of people which were not really used to.”


You toured with them over in Canada. What is this difference between the shows here and back over in Canada?

 “Not really. I’d say the shows are pretty even. Possibly bigger over here, but nothing majorly different.”


Have you noticed any differences between the fans over here, compared to those in Canada?

 “Not a huge difference. Everyone’s pretty enthusiastic about it.”


You released ‘Poisoned Altars’ back in 2015. How have your fans taken the new material?

 “Oh really good. Compared to the last record, this was a real step up for us.”


How did you approach the new album? Did you approach it any differently to previous releases?

 “In some ways, yeah. In our last albums, we pretty much just recorded all the songs we’d recorded up until that point. And I think we pretty much took the same approach with this album. Just with new songs.”


Were you able to bring in any new influences with this album?

 “Yeah, I think this album has definitely ventured more towards death metal and old metal.”


Production wise, the album is definitely a step up. Have fans noticed the change in sound?

 “Yeah, thats kind of the reason why we got Joel Grind from Toxic Holocaust to record it for us. Definitely gets their sound.”


How do you approach writing new material?

 “Well, mainly its me and Eric.We come up with some guitar riffs and we’ll be like, thats a cool riff, lets write a song around that. Then we’ll jam it with the drummer, throw some bass on it, not on this tour. Then thats pretty much it I guess.”


Do you find yourselves tweaking a lot in the studio or are you pretty much set when you go in?

 “For the two albums that we’ve done, they were pretty much finished when we went into the studio. We’re always open to new ideas and ways to make things different.”


Would you say there is a wide variety of influences between you guys?

 Oh yeah, for sure. Like, a lot of mine has come a lot more from progressive music. King Crimson, yada yada, also a lot of classical, I play a lot of classical, but Erik likes stuff like Meshuggah, and he’s always trying to push it that way, I always drag it back haha.”


Have you taken any ‘out there’ influences?

 “Yeah, like I’d say subconsciously, for sure. I think we’re always influenced by beats, its just something about people writing their own music that’s really cool. Its always more of an after thought though.”


For those who haven’t heard of you guys. How would you describe your music and why should people buy it?

 “Umm, we kind of just consider ourselves as metal, but we like to think we do our own thing like, not making music to follow the crowd. Like oh, we’ve gotta play doom now, or write loads of breakdowns haha. I dunno, its unique, like cool riffs and stuff.”


The UK and Europe tour continues into late February. Are there any shows in particular that you look forward to playing?

 “All of them! Yeah, not even 100% of the routing cause I’ve only looked it up a couple times. Were driving ourselves.”


How is that going?

“Yeah, its great. I mean, we aimed to do as much sightseeing as possible on this tour. Earlier on, we hit up stonehenge. Like man, I’m excited to see everywhere. We came to Europe twice before with Blood Fang, but we we’re always in and out of venues, we never really got to explore places. Its been great to be able to go where we want, but also financially beneficial, which is why we decided to do it. Its been fun, getting used to being on the wrong side of the car!”


You seem to be touring relentlessly. What is it that you love about touring?

 “Well, it’s just something we always wanted to do. Like, ever since me and Erik started being in bands in sixth grade, we always wanted to be in a touring band. Now that we’ve had the chance, we want everyone to hear our music, and maybe one day make a living from it.”


Did you ever imagine when you started out that you would be playing international shows?

 “Not really. Its something we hoped to do, but we didn’t think it would happen. We started the band for fun, and its great where its come so far. We never expected to tour, or for Relapse to hear us. It’s been great.”


You spoke about yourself and Erik being in bands from a young age. Had you done many projects together before Lord Dying?

 “Yeah, we did most of our bands together. Theres a few projects here and there that we didn’t do together, but for the most part, we learned how to play music and perform together, with each other.”


Has that experience helped when it came to starting Lord Dying?

 “I mean, a fresh approach is always good when it comes to writing, but at the same time, as me and Erik have grown older, our writing styles have grown further apart, which works really well. We both know how each other work, so we have a good understanding, even if our paths don’t match.”


When you get home, you have a tour with Weedeater. What are you looking forward to about that?

 “To see if the legends are true, Dixie Dave haha… but, no I think its going to be a great tour. We have Author & Punisher and Today Is The Day on that tour as well. Should be fun.”


What are your plans for after that tour?

 “Yeah, theres a few things in the works. Were looking into a summer in Europe, a possible headlining tour in America… nothing booked in yet, but hopefully, for sure.”


Are you planning to hit any festivals this year?

 “We’d like to. We’re working our way to that, but its a goal, for sure.”


Are there any festivals over here that you would like to play?

 “Of course, I’d like to play HellFest. It would be immense to have the chance to share the stage with Black Sabbath. Theres so many that I could say, but to play any of them would be so cool.”


Have you been writing any material between tours?

 “Yeah, we’ve been writing stuff, for sure. Umm, we were working on doing an EP recently, but then this tour and other stuff came up so, we’ll see what we do about it, but I think mainly we’re working towards getting our third album out next year. At this point, it just seems to be whenever we have the time.”


If you could play a show, with any band in any venue. Who would it be and where?

 “I think we could all agree on Slayer. Cant even think of what venue though, theres too many good ones haha.”


What are the venues like in Oregon? Have you seen an increase in venue closures?

 I’d say there pretty much the same. Like, venues are closing for sure. Portland has lost a load of good venues. It’s now like down to smaller bars and then bigger venues like this.”


Are there any bands from home that you think deserve a bit more recognition?

 “Ahh man, yeah there’s so many good bands in Portland. Theres a band called Longknife, they’re a really good punk band. Red Fang, there’s so many good bands. Its a really good scene.”


Portland seems to be producing a lot of good bands. Has that been an on going occurrence?

 “I think it draws a lot of people with live music. Its just gloomy and cloudy all the time, so everyone writes metal haha.”


What are your plans for the rest of 2016?

 “Well, we’ve pretty much got a full year of touring lined up. If we get any time spare from that, we’ll be writing.”


Thanks very much for takin the time to speak to us.

Interview: Siôn Roe


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