Are Skreamer the new voice for the voiceless?
We talk to the British metallers who are sick of this shit
If you look out the window or read the news, you'll no doubt be aware that not everything is hunky dory. One band who want a change in society and making their voices heard through ripping modern heavy metal are the Wales-via-London quartet Skreamer. Don't know who they are? Here's a brief introduction...
The band answered these questions as a collective.
So, firstly, where did the band name come from?
"Skreamer (originally spelt with a ‘c’) as a band name has been around for about 40 years. Samuel [Morter, vocalist]'s father started the band when he was 19, in 1975. It was his first band. We decided to keep the name when we started."
It's pretty old school to use a 'K'...
"This is one of those questions that we cringe at now. We’re all huge video game nerds, and Mortal Kombat in fact inspired the use of the 'K' in the name."
You moved from London to North Wales, isn't that a hindrance for gigging?
"No. We spend most of the touring year up and down the UK as well as Europe, so where we lived became less and less important. If anything we’re now closer, centrally, to all major cities and festival locations throughout the UK."
**What's the music scene like where you now live?
**"We’re not part of the local scene, although we have played a lot of venues in Wales. We think the whole of the United Kingdom has struggled with its scene over the last few years, but there’s still nothing quite like being around like-minded people at a gig, wherever you are.
"We actually wanted to live in a place where we could record, isolate ourselves and live somewhere beautiful, away from the stress and constant work we do when we’re touring or gigging. Creatively, it’s a huge help."
**Your latest video for Let 'Em Burn is very in your face and full of fire, is that a good visual representation for Skreamer?
**"At the moment, yes. Right from the days of Blackened Earth we have done our best to bring attention to what’s going on all over the world; ecologically, humanly and artistically. We, like many others, are angry at the way people are treated in war, poverty, starvation, senseless deaths and the divide that’s created amongst all human beings. These are the challenges we face in our generation. We have always, and still believe, that everyone in the world is equal. We’re lucky enough to have a voice that hopefully will reach a few others that feel the same. Songs and videos like Let ‘Em Burn, Flesh & Blood, This Is War, Victim, Blackened Earth and The Awakening are all about our expression of what’s going on. We think it’s the responsibility of any artist to write, paint, and portray what they see around them to the best of their ability. We advocate non-violence, but complete freedom of speech. Especially for those who don’t get heard."
Lyrically it evokes imagery of riots and anarchy, is that intentional?
"We don’t advocate rioting, and anarchy is a matter of choice by the individual. We write as creative people and sometimes getting the message across has to be extreme, or else it’s just a pop song, which means nothing! Is what we write anarchistic? We think that’s a decision for others."
How do you feel about British society in 2015?
"It’s not just about British society, it’s about the world society. Full of debt, poverty, hate, suffering, racism, the mistreating of the elderly, job losses and lies that are bound in propaganda used to manipulate the masses. We don’t believe any society is a good one when they include any of these. The system is flawed globally, not just in Britain."
What can bands like Skreamer do to change things?
"Tell the truth as we know it and be a voice for the voiceless. We’re just a small band doing our best to change things or at least get people thinking. Everyone will have their own thoughts on what they can do, or what in fact they want to do. The right and responsibility to do what you can is in everybody’s hands."
**What do you have planned for 2016?
**"We’re thinking we may release the album at the Underworld on 9 April. We also have some tours lined up in Europe and we really want to get to the USA!"