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How Fallujah are merging the worlds of metal and sci-fi

Through pushing death metal’s boundaries, Fallujah are reaching for the stars with the help of, er, The X Files?! As the band explain, the truth is still out there...

Fallujah frontman Alex Hofman was working as aPAonthesetofthe new X-Files series when he noticed something important. To make Mulder, Scully and their paranormal friends believable, the crew were striving to find ways to manipulate the viewers’ feelings without their knowledge. “I saw how much went into cinematic techniques used to unconsciously evoke emotion,” he says. “I was watching scenes being shot and actors getting into character, trying to replicate their emotions. It was really interesting.”

It’s an approach he’s carried into Fallujah’s latest album, Dreamless, which brims with cinematic nuance and is the latest step on the journey for a death metal band who are fixated with progress.

The band formed in 2007 while Alex and fellow founding member Scott Carstairs were in high school in San Francisco’s Bay Area, notorious for its legendary 80s thrash scene, though Alex is quick to establish distance from it. “The scene we came up in had nothing to do with that. It was a young scene, with bands like Animosity and All Shall Perish; it was a cool time,” he recalls. “A few days after me and Scott graduated, Fallujah went on our first tour, and it’s been a full-time thing ever since.”

Their desire to surpass the limitations of the deathcore scene shone in the tech-death of 2011 debut full-length The Harvest Wombs, hinting at progressive atmospheres to come, before they found their voice on 2014’s The Flesh Prevails, an assault of uplifting devastation with layers of contrasting rhythm and melody wrought around relentless blasts. It was a huge stride forward.

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