How did you first learn about Metal-Rules.com?
I've been reading Metal-Rules for a couple of years. It's how I check
out most of the music I end up buying. Metal-Rules always gives good
comprehensive reviews that give me a good idea as to whether a band
would be to my taste. The webzine has just gotten better over the years.
The interviews are very informative and entertaining, and I enjoy most
all the sections the mag offers.
Are you a regular visitor to the Metal-Rules.com webzine?
Yes. I read the webzine at least once a month, when the new reviews
How important is Metal-Rules.com or the Internet in general for
getting your music?
It is my starting point. I read all the reviews each month and then
check into the bands that sound like something I would like more thoroughly.
In your experience, either as a reader or as a band, what has
Metal-Rules.com meant to you?
As stated, Metal-Rules is very important in letting me know about
bands I might not have known previously. As far as our band, the guys at
Metal-Rules have been very positive and receptive to us and hopefully
the relationship between us will only strengthen over time.
Do you think webzines like Metal-Rules.com are, or maybe someday
could, replace traditional published magazines?
I think they have to a large extent, particularly in the US. Metal
Maniacs is the only mag I know of that still covers 'real' metal and is
easily obtainable. Personally, I like the feel and tradition of the
written word in a format that you can touch and keep. But more
importantly is the quality of information relayed to the reader.
Can you please list the members of the band and what they each
Billy Mullican - Vocals
Troy Reid - Guitars
Tim Umstead - Bass
Brad Arron - Drums
How long has the band been together and what goals would you like
to achieve in the coming years with the band?
A Lower Deep was formed in late 2001, but each of its members have
more than a decade of experience playing and touring. Our hope is that
this is our last stop, band wise, and that this band will grow and
mature together for a long time to come. We simply wish to play music
that we are passionate about, build a loyal fanbase, get to play with
bands we respect and in new places, and lastly we hope to procure that
elusive deal that will make our music more widely heard and perhaps
afford us the opportunity to do what we love for a living.
In your opinion, what style of metal would you say best describes
what you play?
We are simply heavy metal in the tradition of bands like Maiden,
Metallica, Megadeth. We are still learning each other and our individual
styles and tastes are still being infused into the overall A Lower Deep
sound. We hope to always remain true to what we consider 'real' metal
but constantly evolve and mature both as musicians and as a band.
Who have been some of your main influences?
That would depend on which of us you asked. We all share a love for
the 'greats' of metal. The bands that really forged a timeless sound
like those above and the likes of Judas Priest, Queensryche, Slayer and
so many others. But each of us has our own influences that range from
jazz and classical to bands like Aerosmith, The Cure, Journey and
countless more. We are pretty eclectic in our individual listening and
Is your band currently signed to a record label?
We are currently unsigned. We are shopping for a label/distribution.
That is goal of any serious band to find the avenues that will allow us
to play more and farther from home, as well as, allow the most people
possible to hear our music.
Have you contributed work to other compilation CDs?
We are selective about who we do comps with. A lot want you to pay
but don't seem to offer much to make it beneficial for the band. We were
also selected to be on the ProgPower III Compilation but didn't get our
copyrights done in time. Due to the good reputation and work of
Metal-Rules we are proud to be selected for this comp and for it to be
the first we appear on.
Where did they hear about this compilation?
Through the Metal-Rules website.
Why did you choose this compilation to get your music to potential
The quality and reputation of Metal-Rules.
Besides your song, what is the best feature of the Metal-Rules
compilation and why?
The potential numbers of fans that will hear it or at least know of
the bands on it. Also, the quality of the bands that were selected. If
only a bunch of unknown, mediocre bands were on it, it would not benefit
us much to be on it. But all the bands are very good and lend
credibility to each other.
Why did you choose this particular song for the compilation?
Honestly, this is not the best song from our CD in my opinion. Don't
get me wrong, it is a good song and I like it a lot. We think all the
songs on our CD are good or we wouldn't have put them on it. But this
one was among the first we completed in recording and felt it offered a
good representation of what we do. The version that is on the CD has
better production, a second rhythm guitar added, and an overall fuller
sound. But we didn't want to miss the opportunity to be included on this
comp. We are proud of this version of the song, and hope everyone will
enjoy it enough to check us out further.
Where did you record the song & who wrote it and produced it?
We recorded it at Weaver Brothers Recording in Blountsville, Alabama,
USA. It was engineered by Phillip and Jonathan Weaver. Tim Umstead mixed
and produced. Lyrics are by Billy Mullican and music by Troy Reid. This
version of the song was recorded in May of 2002. The CD was finalized
and released on October 26, 2002.
Would you say that your song on this compilation representative of
all your material?
In so much as it has a variety of tempos and rhythms in it. All ten
songs on our CD are quiet different from each other. This song is the
most 'traditional', meaning it pays homage to the classic metal sound
more than the others. I think it gives a good idea of what we do and are
about, but doesn't fully reflect the versatility of the CD as a whole.
What is your song on this compilation about and what was the
inspiration behind it?
It is entitled "The Breed." It is based on the novel Cabal
by Clive Barker, also made into the movie Nightbreed. The song focuses
on a concept put forth by one of the breed in a discussion with Boone's
girlfriend deep under Midian. She says that the breed where nearly
driven to extinction by the fear and hatred of humans. But though humans
fear and hate them, when they dream, they dream they can fly or have
super-human powers. In short, they dream they are Breed.
What about this song made you select it for this compilation OR if
your band wrote or recorded a new song specifically for this CD, what
things did you have in mind when writing the song for use this
We had three songs for the CD recorded at the time the bands for the
comp were being selected. Of the three, "The Breed" contained
most of the elements that are characteristic of the over all A Lower
Deep sound. Numerous changes, transitions from melodic to heavy vocals,
and catchy riffs.
What kind of expectations do you have towards this particular
compilation? What do you hope to gain by being featured?
We hope that this will allow our name to become more widely known. We
hope a good number of people we be intrigued enough to check out A Lower
Deep further. We hope people will enjoy and relate to what we are doing,
and maybe someone listening will be in a position to help us move
forward in some way.
Are you hoping this might help you in some way gain the kind of
exposure that may lead to a label picking you up?
Definitely! That is the ultimate goal I think for all serious bands.
As you know, most of the bands on this compilation are not
extremely well known. Do you think a compilation CD with a group of
mostly underground bands is a great way to help get your music noticed?
I don't know, I guess we'll see. But with Metal-Rules putting it out,
and a great band like Jag Panzer being affiliated, I think it is a good
opportunity for us and the other unsigned bands on the comp.
What do you think of compilation CD's overall?
Depends on how they are handled. ProgPower handed one out for free to
everyone at the festival. A lot of labels sell them cheaply with a lot
of their bands on it. It can be a way for fans to sample bands they
might not know or hear of otherwise.
What kinds of things should a compilation feature in order to make
it worth purchasing and what makes a compilation worthwhile?
Of course first and foremost is the quality of the music. The songs
should be good and the sound quality good. I think the price must be low
and treated as a sampler to entice fans to listen to a lot of bands they
don't know. Having a couple of bigger bands offer previously unreleased
songs is great idea.
If you had a chance to put together this type of compilation, what
would be some of the unsigned bands you'd like to feature?
I've listened to most of the bands to be on this comp and I think
Metal-Rules chose very well. The cross section of styles is good and all
the bands sound very pro. This is exactly the type of comp I would like.
Perhaps, do comps that are genre specific as well.
Would you be interested in sacrificing another song for
"Metal-Rules.com - Vol. II" if the opportunity presented
Let's see how this one goes (laughs). Seriously, I see no reason why
not. We'd be honored to be associated with anything Metal-Rules would
like us to be apart of.
Where can people order your other recorded material?
for ordering, more songs samples, and bunch more stuff.
What are your band's upcoming battle plans?
Play anywhere, anytime. Hopefully, do some opening slots for some
signed bands. And just continue to plow away at reaching the masses and
forging a small niche for A Lower Deep.
Do you have any live dates coming up that you'd like to list here?
We are booking shows now and will be online soon.