Interview : Mike Williams, EYEHATEGOD, ARSON ANTHEM

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…on EyeHateGod

Brad Barratt: I’m looking forward to the upcoming EyeHateGod winter tour and I see that your first date is at Bottletree in Birmingham, Alabama on November 30th. How does it feel to be touring again? If things work out on this tour, would you consider touring the Northeast sometime in the near future?

Mike IX: We just toured the East Coast and Northeast in June but we will be back eventually. We’ve done some cities up there like Boston and NYC like 3 times each recently. As far as looking forward to touring, of course I am, it always feels good to get back out on the railroad tracks and start hitching rides.  We have been touring pretty steady between Europe and the USA in the past few years and I love it.

Brad Barratt: I have heard about a possible new EyeHateGod album in 2011. I wanted to ask if you had any news on this upcoming album? It’s been a few years since you have released a new album. What can fans of Eyehategod expect from this new release?

Mike IX: Its been 10 years since an LP proper. We have new songs written but as far as getting back in the studio, you tell me…HaHa! We have had set back after set back, so I’m not making any promises on when or where etc… The new material is killing though, great sounding stuff. We cant wait to record, whenever that may be.

Brad Barratt: I personally enjoy your material from the “Dopesick” album and one of my favorite tracks on that is “Anxiety Hangover” because of the way it’s structured. It has the perfect mix of sludge and doom (at least to my ears). Can you name any bands or musical styles that influenced you on this album? I don’t want to make an obligatory Black Sabbath comparison but I can definitely hear elements of them in this track.

Mike IX: Thanks man. Well, you know, Sabbath of course, Black Flag, Stooges, Skynyrd, St. Vitus, Carnivore, Germs, Confessor, C.O.C., Melvins, Laughing Hyenas etc…

…on Arson Anthem

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Brad Barratt: As I noted on the phone, I really enjoy the new Arson Anthem album and I noticed that there’s an awesome amount of energy that goes into each track. What was it like to record this album? Was it difficult to find the time to get everyone into the studio to record?

Mike IX: Cool, glad you like it. It was pretty taxing during the recording process definitely, we holed up in the jam room at Nodferatu’s Lair for like 8 hours a day for a week and knocked it out. Everybody contributed this time as far as writing goes as well, we all wrote songs an I am proud of the fact I wrote a couple, including the title track “Insecurity Notoriety”, with some tweaking by Phil. The lyrics n this album were a collaboration also.

Brad Barratt: I have heard about a possible Arson Anthem tour in January of 2011. Do you have any more news on this? As with EyeHateGod, would you consider touring the Northeast if that works out?

Mike IX: It’s not really gonna be a full tour, more like a few dates here and there. It’s almost impossible to get us all in the same room together, so we do what we can to play live. Come see us wherever we play because it could be the only chance.

Brad Barratt: The new Arson Anthem album reminds me so much of older hardcore, especially that from the DC scene (Bad Brains, Minor Threat) and California scene (Black Flag). Do you think that the music of Arson Anthem has crossover appeal to fans of Pantera, Down and EyeHateGod?

Mike IX: That’s the scene I grew up in—I don’t mean living in D.C. or California—but I’ve always listened to the old HC groups from that era [which] obviously has been inspiration to us, you know. [Arson Anthem is] a band I’ve wanted to do for a while and I’m happy its finally here. It’s up to people with open minds to show they like their extreme music of course; some fans of our other bands will dig this record, some won’t. I hope folks will give it a chance. If you like fast, pissed and raw aggressive HC, check us out, don’t worry about who is in the band….

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