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......::::CONTEMPLATING MURDER (USA)::::......
Realized at: 28th, March 2017
Answered questions by Ryan Parks (singer, guitars - Contemplating Murder) 
 

"We are very different from most other bands. We are partly doom, partly thrash, partly death, partly traditional - these are elements of the 3 of us together. I've never been prejudice towards any music (...)"

 

1. You are 3 years on the scene. I would like to turn back and remember one positive and one negative moment of your careers.

Positive note would be returning to the scene in general, it had been almost 10 years since I had recorded and or played live. And I love that we rekindled old friendships and made new ones with a lot of bands. The one negative note would be the recording of the album, despite the fact we are very happy with it - we weren't as prepared as I have been in the past, and some of it could have been a lot better.

2. Your music is often described as death-doom, or slower death metal sludge and hardcore influences. What HC/punk bands influenced you? Were you inspired by bands like Napalm Death and Suicideal Tendencies? Did you have any other influences, including non-musical ones?

I think "death-doom" or "sludge" is fair... and yes we have hardcore influence as well. Alan, our bass player is a huge Napalm Death fan and all of us (including drummer Gregg) are ST fans, and have been since the first album. I met Mike and Rocky a few times, very cool guys. Alan and I are also very big Hatebreed fans, and we both love old school shit. Alan was a big punker when we were kids, and still is. For music I am a huge fan of Trouble, The Skull (ex-Trouble), Obituary, Carcass, Entombed, Helstar, Maiden and a newer band called All Hail The Yeti. Alan is a big fan of old school punk like Minor Threat and DK. Gregg is a huge fan of Kreator, Exodus and old Slayer. We all love horror films and partying.  

3. Generally, your lyrical themes are about horror, aren’t they? But what are your interests in “Contemplating Murder” exactly and what is your opinion about all these topics?

Yes, we are big horror fans. Personally myself, I had planned in my early years to go into film and writing, specifically horror, it ended up turning more into horror music than anything else. However for my career I sell rare horror memorabilia and literature, so it's never drifted away. I write most of the lyrics for Contemplating Murder and most of it is horror-themed, or stories related to real actual events that are horrifying. On the album we have songs inspired by Stephen King, Vlad the Impaler, a loose story about a guy we know in prison, etc...I try not to get political in any of my projects or lyrics, I don't want to be one-sided on shit.  

4. Your full length debut record was released almost 3 years ago. Now that time has passed and the thoughts have matured, are you satisfied by the outcome? Would you change anything if you had the chance to do so?

Well, like I said in the first question - we weren't quite prepared. At our last practice we were talking about redoing our song "Seventeen"because there is a couple flaws in the way we initially did it, and we are much better as a unit of musicians now than we were before. This is stuff 99% of people wouldn't notice except us, and again we are happy with that recording. It is heavy as fuck, and we love it.  

5. The album can also boast with a extraordinary VENOM cover. How was it decided to be included as a bonus? What about other songs you would like to "cover" on your future releases?

I am a big Venom fan and have been since I was a kid. They were a big influence on me as well as Mercyful Fate and King Diamond - the early black metal shit. I don't much care for today's style of black metal, it's not heavy enough for me. We have talked about doing other covers in the future - maybe Suicidal Tendencies or Hatebreed - and make them heavier, a bit slower, more balls... I thought of taking old soft pop songs and making them metal, stuff like that - it would be fun.  

6. Your music is pretty diverse with numerous different elements. What is the songwriting process like? How did you conceptualize/visualize the music before materializing them?

Thanks man - we are very different from most other bands. We are partly doom, partly thrash, partly death, partly traditional - these are elements of the 3 of us together. I've never been prejudice towards any music - I love anything that makes me think or taps me feet. The wiring process varies - usually I'll come up with a riff while we're jamming and if we like it we just keep repeating and throwing extra stuff out there. Then I usually come home and add stuff to it, intros, outros, breaks - and lyrics usually come last for me. Not always, but usually - i like to see where the riffs take me in my head and then I start writing.  

7. What do you consider to be the best musical things of the past few years? Have you run into albums that absolutely mesmerized you? Or do you give recent bands cold shoulder and listen to the old stuff only?

All Hail The Yeti put out their 1st album a few years back. They are local to Southern California. It blew me away. Heavy as fuck and the lyrics were right up my alley. Most shit now doesn't do anything for me - most death metal is redundant to me and the new-age metal doesn't grab me much. My son turned me on to Whitechapel, those guys are pretty bad ass. Helstar has had a huge comeback and I love their shit, plus they are good buddies of mine. The Skull are friends too, their stuff is heavy as hell and better than the new Trouble stuff in my opinion. Alan has been getting into some great new stoner-rock and Gregg listens to a lot of newer German and European shit.  

8. As far as my knowledge goes, Contemplating Murder has performed a lot of local shows so far. What represent the fact of being on stage for you? Is it the best part for a musician? Can you recall one performance, which you just wish you could not forget?

We are for sure a live band. We have much more energy and we love playing for a crowd. Every show is a party and we usually pack the clubs we play. As for specific memories - we played a show with my buddy James Rivera (Helstar), we played a kick ass show with Bonehawk, and a put on a show for a friends birthday that included a sick sludge and stoner doom lineup of Ride The Sun, 13 Angels and Lazy Cobra - that show was off the hook.  

9. You sound like you love Horror movies, what is your favorite genre of horror. Slasher flicks, cheesy horror films?

My personal favorite horror genre is possession and ghosts - The Exorcist is my favorite movie of all time and still gets me. Alan is a big fan of the Evil Dead series and Gregg loves old school shit like The Fog and action movies as well. I love any horror film, scary, cheezy, sleazy, B flick or A list - I'll take whatever I can get.  

10. Is it hard to play as a trio? Was this intended or it just happened to not find more members for the band? And how do you guys get along with each other?

I think most people are surprised when they find out we are a 3-piece. Simply, because we are so incredibly heavy on the record and live. I take personal pride in the tone of my guitar and my rig. I searched a long time to be as heavy as we are. The 3 of us get along great - we all grew up together it just wasn't until a few years ago that we decided to jam and do Contemplating Murder. It was initailly going to be a reunion of my old band Poets of the Plague, and one by one the other guys dropped out and picked Alan and Gregg up to start playing the old Poets shit, but then I was like fuck it - let's do our own thing - and glad we did.  

11. How do you see the doom metal scene? Many old acts quit or split, but there are enough bands that offer quality music and keep the banner high. How do you see the future, specifically?

I think doom has made a big come back. I see and hear a lot of it. The    stoner rock-doom stuff is huge in the USA and especially in Southern California. I prefer old school doom myself, like St Vitus, Trouble, Cathedral - but the newer stuff has a lot of those elements and it is turning on a lot more people and becoming more popular. That's a good thing to me - and it's good for metal.  

12. Within the heavy metal and rock worlds there has been a massive resurgence of vinyl, and even cassettes to an extent.  How do you feel about the re-emergence of these formats? 

I think it's a little weird to bring back tapes, I guess it's just nostalgic for us older guys - but in reality - they sucked before and I think they still suck, hahaha.... Vinyl is great, I approve - I have missed opening vinyl sleeves and seeing the pictures and reading the lyrics, and hearing the pop and fizz of the record spinning. I have no problems with retro shit. I have been getting some myself recently and my wife bought me a record player.  

13. Alright, we’ve come to an end. Do you have any final thoughts? Thank you for your time…

Contemplating Murder has probably about 5 songs since the last recording that are ready to go and that we have been playing alternately at shows...hopefully at some point we will get around to getting an entire album worth of stuff and have it put out there...We are also on the soundtrack to a new horror movie that just came out called "Killer Waves" directed by James Balsamo - so look for that. Alan and myself are in a side project with Scum from Necrocide (TX), Freddy from Sentenced to Burn, and our buddy Karlo from the Phillipines. The band is called Eternal and we will have something recorded probably next year. Thanks everybody and stay HEAVY !!! Please visit Contemplating Murder on facebook.

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