With a ferocious new album titled God is War, hardcore/extreme metal act All Pigs Must Die are set to take the world by storm. Sea of Tranquility Staff Writer Jason Guest recently caught up with the band to talk about the new CD, their history, and future plans.
SoT: Hi. Thanks for taking time out to talk us at Sea of Tranquillity. First, can you tell us a little about the band's history? How did you all meet and decide to form APMD?
We're all from the Boston area, have known each other for years and have played with one another in other bands before. APMD was essentially a drunken idea at a holiday party in 2009. The plan was to do one record for fun, but now it's been about a year and a half and we're more than halfway done with writing the follow up to God Is War. It's all been a bit of a surprise as we didn't intend for anything to come of this.
SoT: How does the band write? Is it a collaborative effort? Or do individual members bring whole songs?
We don't live in the same state so we do a lot of writing through sending home-demos back and forth. Someone will have a rough idea for a song, and it gets passed back and forth and fleshed out. When we're able to get together as a full band we can finalize things and make changes, play around with structure, etc. Being so familiar with each other as players makes the process generally painless and we're able to write pretty quickly.
SoT: How do the songs on God Is War differ from your debut EP? Does it mark any progression in the band's sound?
We don't ever stop writing, and the LP was recorded maybe seven months after the EP, so the songs aren't drastically different. A few of the songs on God Is War were written and almost recorded for the EP. The only difference was that the nature of a full length allows us to mix in slower and longer songs that wouldn't have been appropriate for the EP. It's more of picking what songs work best together as a group for the intended format.
SoT: The overall sound of the band is sheer rage. Does APMD give you all the chance to write the kind of music they may not produce in your other bands?
The four of us are very much on the same page musically and mentally, so APMD is just what this combination of influences and ideas sounds like. We've all played in heavy bands before, so the opportunity to write aggressive music has been there, but different groups of people collaborating and contributing will yield different results. This band is just very much a sum of its parts.
SoT: The album title, the song titles, and the lyrics are all religious and political themed. Can you elaborate on the lyrical themes on the album?
The lyrical content is written to fit the tone of the music, and though the lyrics touch upon topics that could be considered political in some regards, we aren't pushing a stance on them either way. Opinions on such things are for people to form for themselves, not for us to say. We have no agenda as a band.
SoT: The production on God Is War is raw and has a sound to it that's missing from a lot of recent albums that rely in ProTools. Why was it important that it not sound over-produced?
It was important to us that we made a record that we'd want to listen to ourselves. It seems like there's this idea that if you record on Pro-Tools your record will automatically sound clicky and surgical and inhuman and lifeless..., and that's not the case at all. It's a matter of what the band wants and what engineer they record with. We've done both our records on Pro-Tools, but our influences and reference points sound a certain way, our collective tastes are towards a certain sound, and we recorded with Kurt Ballou. That is where the majority of the sound of the record is coming from, not the method used to record it.
SoT: Do you think the uber-produced records carry the same weight as those without the ProTools approach?
The only thing that matters is songwriting. If you have good songs, it doesn't matter if you recorded on Pro-Tools, 2" tape, a 4-track, Garage Band, DAT, a boom box, your iPhone, etc. A lot of really slick-sounding metal and hardcore records fall flat because the songs are just bad, not because it was recorded digitally. In reality it just comes down to what you want to do and what's the best way to do it. There is no right or wrong. Both methods have their merits. In the end, Pro-Tools doesn't ruin records, bad songs ruin records.
SoT: With all of the members in other bands, how do you find time to squeeze in APMD?
We try to plan things as far in advance as possible, which makes it easier to work around everyone's schedule.
SoT: What's next for APMD? Tours? More music?
Touring isn't something we plan on doing a lot of, if any. We have some shows coming up, but something like a full on US tour is something that we will probably never do. There's quite a bit of new music that's already been written though, so there will be more on the way.
SoT: Again, thanks for taking time out to talk us at Sea of Tranquillity.
(Click here to read our reviews of God is War)