INTERVIEW: METALCORE OUTFIT ‘TAKE MY SOUL’ ON MEANINGFUL ‘MODERN SEPARATION’.
From pain and suffering a new life and brighter future will bloom.
SICK AND SOUND presents to its readers an exclusive interview our editor-in-chief Alessandra had with TAKE MY SOUL band, a brand new metalcore outfit from Newcastle, Australia.
We are catching up with the band after the release of their debut EP MODERN SEPARATION, out last September 6th, 2018. Chemistry between brutality and melodic catchiness has never been so flawless, as well as the dynamics and production, so we sat down to find out more about the band and explore their new 7-tracks collection, each and every track being unique.
We had the chance to have a chat with Take My Soul and James, who replied to the majority of our questions as writing the bulk of the band’s material and also was the engineer, recorder, mixer and producer for Modern Separation.
Our track by track review for Modern Separation is available at: www.sickandsound.it/take-my-soul-modern-separation-ep-un-debutto-potente-nella-heaviness-e-raffinato-nella-melodia
- Hello guys, it’s a pleasure to have you here at SICK AND SOUND. Take My Soul is a brand new outfit and so let’s discuss your background and how the band was put together in 2017.
Take My Soul came together from our guitarist Hamish wanting to record some demos of songs he had written. Hamish took the demos to Studio 1618 in Newcastle to record and the resident studio engineer (James) really liked the feel of the songs and as an exercise wrote and recorded some vocals on top of Hamish’s songs and the results were too good not to be followed up further.
Hamish and James recorded a few songs and brought in mutual friend Chris Hix to lay down some drum tracks. Once they realised these songs needed a second guitar Chris Eshman who had played with some of the guys before was brought in to add color and texture. Final member to join was Ben on bass who was shown a demo and was so impressed he offered to join straight after the first listen.
While being a ‘new’ band all members have been around the Australian music scene for a while. Previous bands that we have been in like Chromatide and Level 8 have done some touring within Australia in the past.
- Metalcore is an overcrowded scenario in Australia, so how do you see this soundscape and what bands and genres have influenced your music the most?
As musicians we come from a wide variety of musical tastes and influences ranging from old school metal like Deep Purple and Iron Maiden through to the likes of Slipknot and Periphery. Aussie bands like Cog, Karnivool, Parkway Drive and Twelve Foot Ninja have been massive inspirations. Metalcore seems to be quite popular in Australia at the moment with bands like Northlane and Polaris doing really well and we hope that our sound appeals to those people who are getting out to support metal core bands and shows. While we don’t try to class ourselves into any of the sub-genres etc we see our sound as being metal but flexible within its reach. There are elements of hardcore, progressive and mathematical metal but we really just try to let the song dictate its own style and sound as we are writing and arranging.
- I would love to discuss the sound Take My Soul have crafted. Your new Modern Separation EP brings forward a flawless combination between brutality and melodic. You may go heavy or turn catchy, nonetheless you sound powerful in both cases. What’s the mindset behind this dichotomy and choosing melodic instead of going for straight heaviness?
The juxtaposition of light and dark has always been something that is an important form of art, whether it is music, painting or any other form of art, the balance of light and shade creates dynamics, which can sometimes be lost in the extremely heavy genres of music. While not being a pre-determined format our songs seem to take a dynamic turn from light to dark and vice versa depending on the initial mood of the song. We all come from different musical backgrounds but one thing we all agree on is the importance of balancing elements within our music and not overdoing or overemphasizing one particular element. The great Mike Patton once said something along the lines of if you build a massive wall of sound make sure you create a little window somewhere to take a breath.
Watch Take My Soul – The Fall:
- If you could pick 5 adjectives related to your sound, how would you describe it?
Heavy, Melodic, Dynamic, Catchy, Emotive.
We usually like to let others describe our music, it is just what comes out of us
- I would love to explore with you guys the lyrical themes chosen for these 7 tracks of Modern Separation and the message that your band wants to spread with this record.
Modern Separation in many ways was like a puzzle being put together. Each piece revealed a little more of the overall picture. Each song was not initially intended to be connected to the next, however looking back, we noticed the overall theme of what would later be described as a form of “Modern Separation”. This title, to us, represents the disconnect between how life has been driven to becoming more connected, through media and technology, yet as people, we are becoming separated from each other.
- Let’s talk about the artwork chosen for your debut EP and in what measure this is related to the title.
The artwork for Modern Separation was created by Stefan Skjodt from Denmark. We came across his work randomly and were very impressed. We did have other artwork completed and ready to go but once we sat down and really focused on the themes and threads through the songs we all came back to how much Stefan’s work fit with what we were putting out.
The relation of the artwork to the title is in the form of how relationships can become fractured and break down but from the pain and suffering a new life will bloom and the previous relationship rather than being a painful memory can become a stepping stone towards a stronger relationship and a brighter future.
- Track Remain is a very emotional track I would love to talk about, as anything from the slow tempo to the soft instrumental seems to highlight the vocals both clean and harsh and so the lyrics of this track. What’s the main topic and what was the songwriting behind this song?
This is probably the song with the most meaning, at least for me, I’ve been pretty fortunate in that I’ve never really suffered with mental illness in the way that others have. But this song is about a close friend of mine, and me trying to put myself in their shoes of what it would be like to live with debilitating depression. The lyrics are coming from two perspectives, one from the person who is struggling, and the other from the person on the outside looking in. This song initially was written with a story that our guitarist, Hamish had, but slowly morphed into what it is now.
- Let’s share the experience of featuring Dan Creig of metalcore outfit Lycanthrope on closer track Paralyse and why this song best represents your sound to be picked for a video release.
It was an honour to have someone as talented as Dan featuring on Paralyse. It’s one thing to have an artist who you like on one of your songs, but to have someone who we call a Friend, in a band who we all equally respect, is special. Paralyse was the last song written for the EP and felt like the perfect exclamation point to finish this EP. In a way, Paralyse reflects the EP as a whole, it’s heavy, it’s catchy, and it has both softer moments, as well as heavy breakdowns. It seemed like the perfect choice to have Dan on to showcase his amazing singing and screaming too.
Watch Take My Soul – Paralyse feat. Dan Greig of Lychantrope:
- What’s your favorite track off the EP and why?
The consensus favourite track between the band at the moment is Dying Light. This song has been one of the first outlines written for the band but it has been through a few re-structures and plenty of different vocal drafts before settling as it is on Modern Separation. We like to think of our songs as an entity that can grow and change over time and this track in particular feels like one we have allowed to find its own rhythm and grow with us as we grow as a band. It also shows both the heaviest and lightest sides of the band within the one song. Remain has also been a favourite because it’s honest and from the heart. It is what music is about, in my opinion, evoking real emotions.
- To be a debut EP, production is tip top and so I would love to know what were the challenges faced while working on Modern Separation especially related to a self-releasing process?
Thank you! Self producing music is a double-edged sword. It’s great to be able to be at the helm of making sure our music is coming to life in the way it was intended. But at the same time, it’s a difficult, time consuming, somewhat emotionally crippling process. At the end of the day, we are very proud of the extra effort we took to make sure that Modern Separation is the purest form of art that we could create. Direct from us to our listeners, without coloration from outside sources.
- What memorable or hilarious moment of being together as a band since 2017 or during your recording sessions would you like to share?
Our singer James is quite mild mannered so every single time we sound check when he lets out his first scream it genuinely frightens the band and anyone else around. We like to ask him why he is so angry after he has let out a few deep evil screams!
Also I hear that Hamish has riffs . . .
- What thrilling news and anticipations or live show announcements do you have for our readers?
At the time of writing this, we have just completed our EP launch, which exceeded all of our wildest expectations! We are currently just taking in that experience and are about to get back to working hard at releasing some more material!
Thank you for your time and good luck with the promotion of Modern Separation EP. We are longing for more music to be dropped and supporting you into Europe and US!
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