No problem guys, thank you for the interview and the chance to tell you and others about our band. We are called Legion of Wolves and we play death metal. The name of the band is a vague reference to war and conflict in Roman times. The band started in 2009. We have Irish and Polish members and most recently a Swedish member. To date we have released two demos, Mark of the Legion and Legio Luporum and one full length album called Bringers of the Dark Sleep.
I am Jason and i play drums. Here is the full current line up.
2. When did you decide you wanted to be in a band?
For me personally it would have been back in the 90s. I started drumming in 1995. But even before that i would have dreamt of playing guitar in a band. I idolized Angus Young and other guitarists like Scott Gorham, John Sykes, Dave Murray, Adrian Smith, Tony Iommi and Richie Blackmore. It turned out that I was a much better drummer than guitarist so when I discovered drummers like Brian Downey, Nicko McBrain and Dave Lombardo, Doc (Vader) and Pete Sandoval I wanted to join a metal band. My first metal band was in 2001.
As for Legion of Wolves, thats mainly down to Corys love of old style death metal. When he expressd to me that he wanted to do something in that style the riffs kept coming and I was more than happy to blast along. Thats how we got started really.
3. What is different about being a musician than you imagined?
Hhhhmmmmm, nothing really. To me, as cheesy as it sounds its all about the music and the art of playing an instrument. Its something that i get more passionate about every day. I’m thankful for it, that i have the ability to do what I do, I cherish it. Being a drummer, for me is such a personal thing. I feel the same way I would about a pet for example, Im protective of it. Irrational i know but its true. Recognition, although i crave it at times is not essential. As i said its about the satisfaction of playing the instrument. Exploring it deeply. Thinking about what the mind and body can do individually or in combination. Its amazing, exciting and personal. Some musicians may not understand that, not to mention people that don’t play but thats ok. It can be whatever you want it to be, thats the beauty of it, its an extention of your character, your mind, your soul! The sound of you on your chosen instrument or the instrument that chose you!
4. What gear do you use and why?
Apart from my very first drum kit I’ve always played Pearl drums. My 2 main kits are Pearl masters custom maple and a Pearl vision birch! The masters maple kit sounds beautiful and musical with beautiful tones coming from the toms and bass drum. Almost too nice for death metal so when I bought the second kit for doing gigs with I wanted something more affordable in case it took some abuse on the road trips. Also I chose a birch kit and found the toms to be more boomy and harsh sounding. Not as pleasant but perfect for death metal.
I’m down to 2 snare drums. A Pearl free floating maple shell and a Ian Paice signature steel shell. I feel the Ian Paice signature is a better drum but both are dynamic and have tone and attack, gorgeous! Both are 14inch by 6.5inch. The way I viewed sizing when I bought them was: more depth means more boom and volume! Someone may correct me on that.
With cymbals I use a mixture of Sabian, Meinl and Zildjian. I have become more selective about cymbals over time. I guess I do need projection, cut and volume from my cymbals but I don’t want to sacrifice tone and character for sheer power! Cymbal playing brings another layer and texture to your drumming so I find a balance in the importance of tone and power is perfect for my playing.
Pedals: I switch between Axis and Malleus direct drive pedals. I do sometimes miss the feel of chain driven pedals but there isnt anything you can play on a chain drive that cant be replicated on the direct drive. So I currently opt for smooth speed and ecomony of movement.
On my bass drums I use Roland triggers and the TM2 module. Excellent piece of kit! Virtually no cross talk or double triggering! Easy to use. The option of the dynamic setting is awesome for beefing up your sound and still being able to play dynamically. I combine the triggers with the natuaral bass drum sound to have the natural sound and boom combined with the attack and clarity of the trigger sound. So a long boomy, bassy sound with a sharp, high pitch sound, perfect!
5b sticks. Combination of all brands; pro mark, vater, wincent, etc.
5. What music do you listen to that would surprise people?
80s synth pop! Retro wave! 50s rock n roll! I love the darkness of 80s music and 50s rock n roll makes me feel silly and happy.
6. How do we find your music and merch to buy?
Our music can be found on Spotify, iTunes, Youtube and such platforms. You can also buy our stuff on cd from us through Bigcartel, the link is on our facebook page, same thing for our other merch, t shirts mainly. Our album is also available from our distro label Metal Scrap Records through their website!
7. How did you get a record deal? Or do you want a record deal or are you DIY?
We got in touch with Metal Scrap Records through friends of ours. We sent samples of our new album and they really liked it. Its great to have help of any discription and they are true metal warriors who continue to promote us by doing things like having us do this interview.
8. What bands do people compare your music to?
We have been compared to BOLTTHROWER, HYPOCRISY AND AMON AMARTH(dont know why, haha!)
9. Are you pro Spotify / streaming services ? Or do you think it hurts sales?
Its a double edged sword really! Streaming services take from sales but promote the bands material which may lead to sales of merch or tickets/entry fees. I guess it hinders larger bands who depend on sale of records and aids small bands who need exposure and recognition. With the size of most metal bands at our level of exposure sales won’t dramatically impact on the band or our lives but having more exposure leads to more people coming to our shows to make a good atmosphere and make it worth while. So its a case of money versus music and if I wanted to make money I wouldn’t be playing death metal.
10. What’s the ultimate goal for the band?
The ultimate goal is to gain some recognition in Europe by continuing to write and perform quality music while holding onto the key elements of what we do.
11. Will we see you tour?
I really hope so. We plan to join a tour in Europe in mid to late 2019. Personally, its what I’ve wanted to do since about 2002. Its the next step for our band and I’d love to experience it! Playing gigs everyday in many countries with your brothers in metal, hell yeah!
12. Who would you love to tour with.
Its hard to think of someone who is active that would suit our style on a tour but to just pick some names I’ll say Boltthrower, Benediction, Pestilence, Hail of Bullets, Deicide, Malevolent Creation, Suffocation, Motra Skuld, Terrorizer! Anyone who has that heart felt old style death metal vibe.
13. What is your favorite song of yours and why?
I’ll have to pick two! Summon the Elite for the vicious speed at which we play it and the brutal, spiteful lyrics. Secondly, Heavy Mass of Murder for the menacing vibe of the main riff and drumming and the thrashy parts that follow, its a killer concept also, envisioning an army tank killing all in its path!
14. Why should people take the time to listen to your band over the thousands of other bands?
Great question! Apart from our heart felt, honest effort to bring you good music and our years of experience and knowledge of our chosen genre is this; we have members from 3 different countries, Ireland, Poland and Swedan! So what you get with us is guys from very different cultures all coming together and meshing to create and perform based on our common love of this style of music. Ultimately each guy brings something different to the table.
15. What are your favorite music websites labels podcast etc?
I dont really read or follow too much any more but i used to read Terrorizer and Zero Tolerence magazines and I used to use the Irish Metal forum. Also I used to get the Nuclear Blast catalogue for cds and t shirts!
16. Is imagery important to you? Do you judge albums by the cover?
Yes, imagery is important! I think a public person or a band should look like what they say they are. Graphic imagery paints a picture in the mind of the potential listener. Actually, its vital. Imagine how many people started listening to Iron Maiden, Slayer or Dio based in their album covers. It certainly adds to the experience of buying and listening to an album.
I wouldn’t judge an album by the cover but it might influence whether I show initial interest or not.
17. If you could choose a cover song your band mates would hate what would it be?
MC Hammer, hammer time! Actually I’m pretty sure Chris would enjoy singing that, he’d try out anything! Haha!
18. Is the record or live show more important?
Both of equal importance. They are each very different worlds and I think every musician should strive to excel at both. Its easier to express yourself live but being comfortable in the studio is important. You will find out things about yourself, things that you may not want to realise, in both settings. Its all about learning and growing and enjoying the journey.
19. Name 3 people dead or alive you would want to play your music for.
Dave Lombardo, my idol! He’s the king; power, speed, feel and groove! I’d like to hear what he thinks of my style/chops.
Lemmy, another legend! I know he’d be open minded about our music, thats who he was!
Lastly is a combination of two fictional characters; Mad Max and Conor McCloud because most of my lyrics to date are based on the concepts from those movies and they are both really good at killing people that deserve it!
20. Lemmy Ozzy Dio and Rob Halford in a cage match who wins?
Well, Lemmy would blow smoke in their face and laugh and not fight! Dio wouldn’t wanna fight without his sword and dragon! So it’d be between Ozzy and Rob! Ozzy is so pussy whipped by Sharon that he cant stand up for himself and Rob would defeat him with the best metal scream in history! Halford wins cos he’s made of metal, his circuits gleam, he is perpetual, he keeps the country clean!
And incidently he’s from the same place in Birmingham, England as my beloved girlfriend Nicky! So in the words of legendary WWE commentator Jim Ross; “HALFORD WINS, HALFORD WINS, OH MY GAWD, OZZY IS BROKEN IN HALF!”