Sy Keeler - Onslaught
Prepare for more shellshock and awe, as Onslaught unleash 'Sounds Of Violence' unto you deafening ears. It has already been four years since the force was last felt, and we were tested to destruction. Now after skillfully piercing our brains with their contract in blood and pain, these skullcrushers are again reborn for war.
I spoke with the Demoniac himself - vocalist: Sy Keeler - all about the fashioning of their new antitheist statement, his past searches for sanity, and his imperiled involvement with this influential act, as well as what we can expect in the future from this power from hell, still ready to rage from the hatebox of pure thermonuclear demonstration.
MettleAngel: Hey Man, it is so cool to speak with you. 'The Force' is my favourite Onslaught album. I get compliments everytime I wear my shirt. I have followed the band for decades, and I am glad to see you have a new album after already four years since the release of 'Killing Peace'.
MettleAngel: I know how age factors in to the equation, and families, as well. I see that you are now signed to AFM Records. 'Killing Peace' was on Candlelight Records, right?
MettleAngel: I have the 'Live Polish Assault" DVD on Metal Mind Records. Watching this really helped me get back in to the band. I was less than generous on my review for 'Killing Peace', because I had felt the band had become too modern for my taste.
MettleAngel: I actually compared it to new Exodus, Sepultura, and Slayer. I guess each studio album Onslaught has released has always reflected the Metal of its time. 'Power From Hell' was more punk oriented like Discharge meets The Exploited.
MettleAngel: This was the case also with Anihilated, Virus, English Dogs, Warfare, etc.
MettleAngel: When 'The Force' originally came out, it was back then what we called "Power Metal". You had the falsetto vocals, and that is when acts like Exciter and Raven dominated.
MettleAngel: On the Polish DVD, you make some attempts to hit the highs, but your vocals have evolved quite well over the years to fit the newer style of music. I especially like the song "Shock & Awe", which you have not played live. That was the best track off 'Killing Peace'.
MettleAngel: Man, I would love to hear that. Are there plans to tour North America this year?
MettleAngel: I understand your concerns. Sabbat only played five dates, and the turn out was mediocre. Unless you are on a big bill with heavy promotion, touring the US can be a nightmare. Are you familiar with the "70,000 Tons Of Metal" Cruise? We will be leaving for that very soon.
MettleAngel: I am convinced it will be history in the making and very successful. Hopefully, we will catch you on it next year.
MettleAngel: Hell yeah! So, do you write the lyrics, or does that task and burden still fall on Nige Rockett?
MettleAngel: I too was raised with the guilt of Catholicism. I would have assumed he was Anglican. I like how you Brits coin new words like "Suicideology". It reminds me of Martin Of Sabbat and Skyclad. I love the term "Mythhistory". I noticed that on 'Killing Peace', you used the term "Kharmageddon".
MettleAngel: I was always fascinated by the artwork of 'The Force' and all the occult imagery. It was not until I actually saw the Japananese pressing of the CD, that I got a chance to read the lyrics. I also noticed that you covered AC/DC "Let There Be Rock".
MettleAngel: I know the song appears on 'Search For Sanity', but that is with Steve Grimmett on vocals. This leads me to ask you that if the rumour is true and if you had already originally laid down the vocals parts for "Sanity', before you were dismissed by the band?
MettleAngel: I was not a fan of 'Sanity' at first either, because it sounded like 'Rock You To Hell' meets 'Master Of Puppets'. I understand the earlier demos were more in line with 'The Force', with more protracted songwriting?
MettleAngel: That is why on 'Sounds' you can hear a mix of the new and old. I wonder if the band ever plans to reissue those rare 7" singles or (EP) recordings as well. The 'Welcome To Dying' (EP) has some mean covers of Van Halen's "Atomic Punk" and "Nice 'N' Sleazy" by The Stranglers.
MettleAngel: I know a guy who has the originals still on vinyl. I dubbed them onto tapes years ago, but I would love to have them in MP3 format. Speaking of redoing songs, Onslaught did a fantastic job on "Bomber" by Motörhead. What made you chose this song?
MettleAngel: I always argue that they invented thrash. The Big 4 all were inspired by these bands. I just wish the new Motörhead album was better, it is not as strong as their past efforts.
MettleAngel: I can see that. Did you know that there are bands out there like Ritual Carnage who have covered "Death Metal" by Onslaught?
MettleAngel: Come to think of it, I think I now remember that one he was doing about the war.
MettleAngel: I hear you, they are planting seeds of hate right into our souls. We need a power from Hell to free us from ourselves.
MettleAngel: Well, Man it has been cool chatting with you. Send the best to the rest of the band. I do hope to see you live one day. The new album lives up to its expectations.
MettleAngel: That will rule, in the mean time go convert more Metalheads to the Sounds of your Violence!
See also: review of the album Sounds Of Violence