Interview: Australian metalcore act NUCLEUST on the process behind I AM OCEAN EP, collaboration with Nick McLernon of Make Them Suffer, current scene and more.
SICK AND SOUND is introducing our readers to Australian metalcore and progressive metalcore outfit NUCLEUST. The band formed in 2013 and is currently consisting of: vocalist Jayden Walker, songwriter and guitarist Max Palizban, bassist Pete Lofthouse and drummer Jake Isard.
After debuting on the scene with first EP Fractured Equilibrium in 2014, the band released their sophomore EP Resistivity in 2016, followed by full-length Terra Cerebral in 2017. On November 1st, 2019 NUCLEUST have unleashed their latest offer: I AM OCEAN EP, which has seen the band working alongside producer Nick McLernon of Make Them Suffer.
NUCLEUST come out of the block in sparkling fashion with new materials encompassing a level of bludgeoning intensity and showcasing a progressive soundscape full of heaviness battling against desperate and bare vocals, hammering blast beats, massive breakdowns and technically proficient guitars. Thunderous delivery is juxtaposed with catchiness and mesmerizing choruses that add to the heavy-yet-hooky formula.
Our editor-in-chief Alex is catching up with JAYDEN WALKER and MAX PALIZBAN to discuss the creative process behind new EP I AM OCEAN, the lyrical themes approached and the challenges involved. We got to know the band a little better by discussing their influences, the current metalcore scene and the evolution of the band’s sound and songwriting since their earliest materials. We’ve also had a chat about the collaboration with Nick McLernon of Make Them Suffer and their future plans.
- Hello guys and welcome at SICK AND SOUND. Let’s start with a question to get to know NUCLEUST. How has the band originally formed and what’s been your journey so far?
Max: The band formed in 2013, with me(Max) and Josh our former bass player as the cofounder and then Shannon our former singer and Shay our former Drummer joined the band late 2013.
- What’s the story behind choosing “NUCLEUST” as your band’s name?
Max: The idea is coming from NUCLEUS; the central and most important part of an object, movement, or group, forming the basis for its activity and growth. This band is the centre of our musician life.
- Australia has a wide offer in terms of metalcore bands, do you have any influences among them? Let’s discuss the bands, albums or genres serving as an inspiration for you along the journey or any other soundscape you may have explored before sticking to metalcore/progressive metalcore.
Jayden: Perth has so many outstanding bands, I could spend all day listing them. Make them suffer have been an especially significant influence on all the guys and have continued to inspire us with not only their music, but how they conduct themselves as a band.
- I’m catching up with you on brand amazing offer I AM OCEAN EP out on November 1st, 2019. Let’s discuss the lyrical themes behind the tracks and the vision or message you wish to bring forward with this record, if any.
Jayden: There are alot of different themes intertwined, to be upfront it’s far from a concept album. Each song has a story to tell, and how the songs are interpreted are hopefully different from listener to listener.
- For this record you’ve been collaborating with Nick McLernon of Make Them Suffer. Let’s discuss the experience you had by working together and how this collaboration was set up in the first place.
Max: Working with Nick has been one of the highlights of my career. I approached Nick in early 2018 regarding working with us and he showed interest to be our producer. The result is the best way to describe our experience. Absolutely amazing!
- What was different for this album as opposed to your previous materials and how has the sound progressed or changed since your debut EP Fractured Equilibrium and most recent lineup change?
Max: The approach is completely different. You could say we are becoming a band who write catchy songs compared to writing progressive and complicated riffs. I did enjoy our progressive era a lot but this is how we all enjoy it now. Catchy and groovy music. The lineup change was a part this transition.
- Nowadays we’re seeing many bands changing drastically their sound for multiple reasons. How important is it to evolve beyond metalcore or conversely, how important is it to stick to your heavy-yet-hooky formula and signature sound?
Jayden: People’s tastes and preferences change as they evolve as musicians. For us it was mainly influenced by the new line up and a new method of writing implemented by Producer Nick McLernon.
- What was the general writing and creative process approached for this EP? Or general process when you guys sit down and work on new materials. Do you usually start from a riff, a rhythmic pattern, a general melody..?
Max: I recorded and riff banked many riffs which could fit into a song and then took them to Nick. He then used his magic and expertise to structure the songs and add layers. Then we went through each songs, refined the riffs and finalised them. Jayden worked with Sean from MTS to write and record the vocals and lyrics.
- What were the most challenging aspects working on I AM OCEAN EP?
Max: Move away from writing too many riffs and make them catchy instead.
- As musicians and fans of music, what is the most memorable and coolest moment you have experienced at a show so far?
Max: Overall how people have reacted to our new EP at our live shows.
- If you had the opportunity to tour with 3 mainstream metalcore bands who would you tour with?
Jayden: A combo bill with Nothlane, Make Them Suffer, Polaris and Thornhil.
- What’s in store for NUCELUST for the rest of the year and 2020? Upcoming shows, sneak peeks, anything else you wish to add?
Jayden: Big plans for 2020, most we are having to keep close to our chest at this stage. But stay posted via our socials because we’ve got big news on the horizon.
Thank you for your time guys and all the best for the promotion of your new EP I AM OCEAN. We fully support NUCLEUST into Europe and US!
Nucleust – I Am Ocean EP tracklisting:
2. Walls Of Glass
3. Dark Days
4. Fade Out
5. I Am Ocean
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