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Dying Fetus on breaking the mainstream

Extreme takeover: Their name’s offensive and they play brutal music, yet somehow Maryland’s Dying Fetus are managing to infiltrate the mainstream. We interrogated them about their plans...

Whenever I hang with people from normal walks of life, if they bring up what I do, it’s always an interesting conversation. They’re like, ‘Sorry, what was the name of the band?’ ha ha ha!” Being a professional musician is indubitably at the pretty fucking cool end of the employment spectrum. as a member of Dying Fetus for the last 16 years, co-vocalist, bassist and lyricist Sean Beasley has managed to forge an enduring career in heavy music. alongside his bandmates, co-vocalist/guitarist and founder member John Gallagher, and drummer Trey Williams, he has travelled the world and performed in front of all manner of disparate audiences.

In 2013, thanks to a naïve but endearing comment about their suitability for topping the bill at Download festival made online by one loyal British fan, the maryland trio enjoyed a brief moment of ephemeral fame in the UK, as ‘Why not Dying Fetus?’ got fully memed and Andy Copping did the decent thing and booked the band for an opening Main Stage slot on that hallowed Donington turf.

But instead of disappearing back into the underground shadows when mainstream pundits turned their attention to the next trundling bandwagon, Dying Fetus took that momentum and ran with it. as we speak to Sean and John, they are in the midst of a European tour as main support to hatebreed: something that most insanely brutal death metal bands could never dream of doing, let alone doing with great success. “This is actually our third tour with Hatebreed, the first one in Europe, so there’s camaraderie there,” John drawls, blearily and pre-morning coffee. “Their crew’s looking out for us, we get better catering, and we’re playing in better venues than most death metal bands. So right now we’re living large and I can’t say this tour is hard work.

“But you still have to want to do it, I guess. Jamey [Jasta, Hatebreed frontman] has been a fan of the band for a while and he supports death metal. But I wish there were more bands outside of death metal that we could tour with. I must admit, it’s a challenge. as soon as we start doing our vocals and the blastbeats, it does get a bit extreme for a normal rock’n’roll listener, ha ha ha!”

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