Saturday 20 October 2012

Interview with Sigiriya

Today on Sludgelord I am interviewing Stu (Guitarist) and Dar (Drums) from Sigiriya - the Welsh Stoner Metallers who released a brilliant début album – Return To Earth – in 2011 to massive acclaim.

These guys pedigree was never in doubt as the members were in legendary UK based Doom/Stoner Metal band – Acrimony who sadly split in 2001. Acrimony were one of the most acclaimed bands in the UK Underground Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal scene.

8 years later they regrouped and reformed as Sigiriya. And now it's now my honour to interview them.

Q1 – Hi Guys. Firstly, thanks for doing this and taking the time to talk to us at Sludgelord. We really appreciate it.

Dar - Thanks to you Steve- no problem, time is all I have

Q2 – For People not in the know – Can you tell them how the band came about, When you formed etc...

Dar - We’d all been expressing wanting to do something creative for a while but not neccessarily with each other- however it just seemed a good idea and a natural thing to try and see if we still had a bit of magic with the old guard. It took a while to get things going because we were just having a jam together once in a blue moon for about a year so, I guess we started writing and planning to do ‘a band’ again in around 2009 and went from there. I’m gald we did- all’s been good and better than ever. A much more focused and positive vibe really.

Q3 – I was gutted when Acrimony split as I was a big fan your band. You made some excellent records. Why did you guys split. Was it a case we said all we had to say. 

Dar - We did Acrimony for just over 10 years and spend most of that time being together and getting wrecked – no holds barred tomfoolery and debauchery. My brain and liver needed a rest so I went to college and rehab. I think we had more to say but no voice to say it.

Q4 – Were you guys in touch during the 8 year break of making music together.

Dar - Stu and Roy and Dorian were in Black Eye Riot together and so they were still pretty tight.Yes and no I suppose for me- Stu used to throw some spare change at me if he saw me on street and I’d occasionally break him out of his cider-farm prison. I’d meet up with Mead on the interdimentional hyperplane-there’s a small pub there which sells excellent scrumpy.

Q5 – When and how did you decide to come back together as a band to make music. 

Dar - In a pub using words to form symbolic concepts which we all agreed on- that was probabaly the real start of Sigiriya.

Q6 – Did you decide straight away to reform under a new name and sort of new sound. Also was it a case of new start as Acrimony is in the past now. Time to concentrate on the future. 

Dar - I think we all wanted to do something new and not fall into the trap of fluffing our egos with some kind of trip down memory lane tour. We had offers, but we’re too busy making filth for the future to dwell in the past. 

Q7 – I am glad you did come back as you guys rock and sound better than ever. Why the name Sigiriya. Does it mean anything special.

Stu – Choosing a band name is always a fuckin knightmare. I was out in Sri Lanka getting married and visited the rock which i thought was pretty special and cool. Bared it in mind and suggested it to the guys on my return home. They dug the vibe and it’s stuck ever since.

Q8 – Is the band a full time project or do you have full time jobs/bands to contend with.

Dar - We do the band as much as we can- we all have jobs etc. That said- we all know that music is a part of us that we couldn’t live without.

Q9 – What is the song-writing process like in the band. Is it a whole band collective or individuals that write the music.

Dar- We tend to jam ideas together until we hit an idea that feels rights. We generally know when this is because a massive metal glove will fly into the rehearsal room.

Stu – Once the GLOVE arrives we usually piss our selves and can bet on what ever riff/song we’re working on’s gonna be a winner.

Q10 – What has been the reception like to your live gigs. Has it all been good responses. Any major live highlights so far.

Dar - I’m always greateful and humbled by the response we get- be it a small club gig or festival. I really enjoyed playing Sauzipf rocks festival in Austria this summer and Stoned from the underground- there’s something about playing outdoors that does it for me! Our euro tour with Lord Vicar and Orchid in April this year was a great time too- those vicarboys and the real deal. Roadburn was an obvious highlight but I think playing in Cologne was actually my favourite gig of the tour.

Stu – The response for a majority of the shows we’ve done has been real good and my fave response was some geezer passing out after we’d hit the sonics at the end of ‘Deathtrip..’ in Germany at the start of the tour. I dug Desert Fest (London), Roadburn, Poland and Austria.

Q11 – Do you get many gigs in your home town. Or do you have to travel around a lot. 

Dar - To be honest, we’ve been busy going away from the UK to play so we’ve sadly negelected doing much in the UK and in Swansea. We’ll do something local and around the UK as soon as we get the new album done.

Stu – I prefer the long hall trips over seas, otherwise i’m kinda a recluse.

Q12 – You must be pretty pleased with the reception that Return To Earth has got from the Sludge/Stoner Metal Scene.

Dar - Its been great and a nice way to be accepted back- we appreciate all the support we’ve had from everyone.

Q13 – What are your views of blogs such reviewing your records, as opposed to mainstream music magazines? Has your music reached the mainstream mags, at home or around the world?

Dar - Blogs and webzines/mags are the way forward for me- the internet is a revelation for the underground scene. I’m pretty into the online community and like the fact that the underground scene is pretty alive and well online. We’ve had reviews in Metal Hammer, Terroriser and a few others around Europe but, to be honest, I don’t really read reviews- I already know I’m a cunt and don’t really need anyone else to tell me what I already know.

Q14 – What are your favourite bands around at the moment. Do you listen to modern day rock/metal or do you just listen to the classic era of Stoner Metal/Sludge/Doom/Drone.

Dar - Black Mountain, new Om record is amazing, Gnod, Celeste, Naam, Ulver, Agaloch, new ZZ top record

Stu - Word up on the new ZZ stuff, Tragedy, Enslaved, L V, Cro – Mags, The Obsessed, Kvelertak, Baroness.

Q15 – I would ask you about the state of the UK Sludge/Stoner Metal scene. But I know your all proud Welshmen so I will ask about the brilliant bands Wales is producing at the moment. The Witches Drum, Thorun, Zonderhoof and I would count HARK with Jimbob (ex-Taint) leading that awesome combo. Any other bands you can tell us about. 

Dar - Propserina and Mother six are two other stonking bands from Wales.

Stu – HARK, HARK and HARK.

Q16 – What advice or words of wisdom would you give to upcoming bands and musicians who are about to start a Sludge/Doom/Stoner Rock Band.

Stu – Heads down, raised fist and never surrender.

Dar - Have a laugh and don’t take it all too seriously. Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing or saying- do your own thing and trust that.

Q17 - What are your future plans for the upcoming 12 months or so. Anything we should be excited about.

Dar - Well Dorian our singer left us after the summer gigs ( due to family commitments ) so we’re still writting new material and working on getting someone else in to join us. We wish him well, but the creative juices are still flowing and we’re having too much fun to call in a day.We’ve got a good half dozen solid songs we’re really happy with and another three or so half done or need a bit of work. We’re stil planning to record sometime early in 2013 and get back on the road in the UK and europe. There’s talk of some summer fests around europe again .but I’ll guess we’ll have to see. The impotant thing is keeping focused on what we’re doing now.

Q18 – Any plans to tour the UK or Europe.

Dar - Next year for sure.

Q19 – Finally do you have anything to say to your fans.

Dar - We shall return heavier and stronger!

Stu – Big cheers for your support always and if any of you fancy giving the vocals a shot,give us a shout.

Well Guys thanks for answering these questions. All the best from all of us at Sludgelord.

Well I wish the guys luck in finding a new vocalist. As we need that new album soon!!!!

Check This Great Band Below: