Cliché introduction aside it's time for an interview with guitarist/vocalist Andy Thomas.
Andy: I honestly feel that it is pretty well impossible to NOT leave out some, as there are so many. Also, most of the music I listen to nowadays isn't really metal. Some big ones for me that come to mind right now are Tool, Iron and Wine, Philip Glass, Nine Inch Nails, King Crimson, Devin Townsend, and Akercocke.
(Editor's note: Dear reader, if you have not listened to Akercocke you are seriously missing out)
2. Song of the Crippled Bull got a pretty amazing response online at least, how are people responding to the new material live compared to that?
Andy: We have only played one song, The Great Mistake, live so far, but the response has been great. These next few tours will firmly answer that question, as we will be adding more and more new songs to our sets.
Listen to The Great Mistake here while you read on:
Andy: The name is based off of the Karmapa, a high ranking Tibetan spiritual leader. He wears the black crown as a symbol of his guidance and aid to all beings. However, being a jaded, clouded Westerner, I see a great deal of horror. As a result, I feel that the only help "modern" humans deserve is a spotlight on their own ignorance, greed, and willingness to look away from fear and, therefore, growth; myself included. From that, you have a great deal of our conceptual fodder.
4. The EP was quite conceptual, flowing like a single song and references were made between tracks, is there a concept on the new album, musical or lyrical?
Andy: The album is conceptual, insofar as it stems from my brain, at least lyrically. I think, this time around however, I'd prefer people to arrive at their own conclusions and find their own meaning in it all. I can tell you that, lyrically, the album is much bleaker than the EP.
5. A thing I feel got left out of the (well deserved) hype SOTCB was the fantastic mixing job by Carson Slovak, audible bass is something sadly lacking from a lot of metal bands, did you record with him again? If not, who did you work with this time?
Andy: We totally worked with Carson and Grant at Atrium again. We love their work very much and they are awesome people, to boot!
Once you have finished The Great Mistake, why not listen to the EP:
Andy: Summer Slaughter Canada was an incredibly bittersweet experience for us. The Faceless and Fallujah in particular are bands that we have greatly admired for years. Meeting them, sharing the stage, learning from them, AND getting to know them was a dream come true. They are wonderful gentlemen in every sense of the word. Sadly, halfway through the tour our van's transmission gave up on us and we had to go home. It was very depressing, but I'm sure we will all meet again.
7. Any good Summer Slaughter stories to share that don't involve The Faceless getting in a car crash?
Andy: I spent my birthday in Sherbrooke, QC. We played a show that night, and Geoff from the Faceless started an "Andy" chant during their set. I got very intoxicated, and it was a great time. If you would've told me when Planetary Duality came out that I'd spend a birthday like that, I would've laughed at you.
8. What gear did you guys use on the new album? Was it pretty much the same as the gear you used on the EP?
Andy: Guitarwise, we used an Ibanez RG2228, an LTD Stephan Carpenter 8 string, a PRS CE24, and a Martin D15M. We used a Bogner Uberschall, and EVH 5150III 50 watt, a Fractal Axe FX, as well as MXR and Maxon pedals. We love all of it! I want an Uberschall so badly!
9. I know you collaborated with Alex Hoffman for the artwork, is there anyone who'd be a dream collaboration? It can be anyone, artist, film maker, musician etc.
Andy: Across mediums, I'd love to work with Devin Townsend, Steven Wilson, David Lynch, or Trent Reznor. If I could build a time machine, I would harass Stanley Kubrick, Akira Kurosawa, and Andrei Tarkovsky to lend their hands in any way possible.
10. Are there plans to tour outside North America following the album release?
Andy: We hope to tour all over the planet. We want to bring our music to anyone who will hear it. So yes, we want that badly. Time will tell, as our album will be out soon!
11. This year has been crazy in regard to new music being released, any great 2014 albums you feel like people missed?
Andy: I've been listening to the new Mastodon, Fallujah, and Opeth albums.
12. If you have anything else to add feel free, blogs are digital so no trees will be harmed.
Andy: To anyone that took the time to explore our music and anyone that will yet take the time, thanks so much for the support. Our lives have been enriched so much from this, and we hope that the lives of our listeners have been enriched as well. See you ALL soon!