1- Hello, thanks for answering to our questions. What are you guys currently up to?
We are in the “in-between” period after releasing an album and starting on the next one. We do not tour or play live much, so everyone just gets on with their daily lives and other committments. However, simmering in the background are new demos ready to be made into another album. It is just a case of organising recording!
2- First off, could you make some history of the band?
Monsterworks began in New Zealand in the late nineties. We recorded a few albums and were quite active in the local underground metal scene. In 2003 the band restarted in London, UK, with two of the original members and a couple of local players. The present line-up for Jon, Hugo, James and Marcus has been going for about 4 years and has been the most prolific in terms of album output.
3- How could you describe your sound?
It is a hybrid of most metal styles: classic, death, thrash, even black metal and more ambient types. So long as it falls under a banner of “metal” generally we may well incorporate it.
4- What are the band’s main musical influences?
In the beginning it was mostly death metal like Carcass, Obituary etc, but our influences go back earlier than that to the 70s with Sabbath, Priest; then later Maiden and the thrash movement of the 80s. Our guitarist Marcus was heavily influenced by Pantera/Dimebag in his playing and life in general.
5- How is the feedback for your new album being?
Mostly very positive. We seem to have hit a stride with Monsterworks :: Earth where a more cohesive style has emerged. People are saying it is more prog oriented. In terms of influence it probably isn’t, it comes from listening to a lot of “post-metal” bands like Neurosis, while still giving a nod back to the original death and thrash influences. What results sounds a bit prog-ish but it was arrived at through a different route. As always with Monsterworks, probably the most polarising aspect is the vocals. Because there are a number of different types of voice, it is inevitable that some of them might not sit well with some people. Especially the screamy one which has always been the backbone of Monsterworks. It kind of wouldn’t make sense without it.
6- And are your personally satisfied with the final outcome?
Yes. It came together really well, although the process for making it was the same as we have done for years. There are some very minor bits that I wish I could have spent a bit more time on, but it is probably only me that notices.
7- How could you describe this opus in just 3 words?
Epic Deep Time.
8- How has the production process for your new release been?
I record demos at home using amp modellers and drum machines, onto a laptop. The band gets sent those to start getting familiar with the vibe and then they build on that – leads , basslines, more natural and appropriate drum patterns than the shit I come up with. Eventually we get into a room and thrash it out. When that is underway I make a start on lyrics. We enter a recording studio (Earth Terminal in Hampshire) after fairly minimal practice and go hell for leather over a few days until it’s finished. Usually we can do a few pick-up guitar parts and extra vocals at home in the downtime between recording and whenever we booked mixing.
9- And how do you use to work on the songwriting?
As I said, in the case of Earth, I used a laptop (running Cubase) to do demos for songwriting. I usually noodle away on the guitar for hours getting riffs together before actually starting a song. When I get on a roll I can knock out a song a week. However, then I take time off and I forget how to write and have to start all over again. Recently I have been using a nifty gadget called a BOSS BR-80. It is an amp modeller you plug a guitar straight into which has an 8 track recorder and a drum machine. It is the perfect gadget for my requirements. The only improvements to make on it are the interface appearance and a few more studio effects. Otherwise, it is pretty amazing.
10 – Finally, what are you near-future plans?
More albums to release. More music to record. It won’t stop until someone takes notice!
11- That’s all from our side, thanks again for taking your time to answer our questions. If you now want to add some final words; feel free to do it.
Thanks for the interview and also the cool reviews your site has done for us in the past. At this point I should say something en Español because my wife is Chilean! But I suck at languages. My language is the language of metal, and it is universal. ¡Qué tenga un buen día!