FE26: Paul Fenner

August 21st, 2005
by EvilG

Paul Fenner of Fe26
Interviewed Wed. July 16 1997 By EvilG

Fe26 is a band on the rise. The new CD “A Worldly Story” is now out and the band are currently doing intensive touring to support this killer CD.

I was offered the opportunity to interview the vocalist Paul Fenner and of course I jumped at the chance. Fenner is one of the most original and versatile vocalists in metal today. Just check out their song “10 Degrees And Counting” to hear how he switches from the clean vocal style to a death growl. Now onto the good stuff…the questions!!


 

Metal Rules!!
My first question is one you’ve surely heard before, and that is tell me how you decided upon using Fe26 as the band name?

Fe26:
Initially the band was called “9-Iron.” We discovered a skate-punk band on the West Coast owned the rights to the name and it was time to change it. We liked “Iron” and we wanted something original and not a car part like everyone else. Fe26 comes from “Iron” if you know your Chemistry.

 

Metal Rules!!
How did the band as it is now come together?

Fe26:
All of us actually grew up together and played in various other bands in our area. It was inevitable that we would end up together.

 

Metal Rules!!
What drives or motivates Fe26?

Fe26:
Naturally, the music. Plus we LOVE to play. There’s nothing like it.

 

Metal Rules!!
Some interviewers/reviewers of “A Worldly Story” have criticized your lyrics as being re-hashed and typical of the metal genre. How would you defend them?

Fe26:
I would not defend them. That’s what we are. The lyrics are about real life and real life occurrences. There’s nothing fabricated or false.

 

Metal Rules!!
What made you decide to cover the 80′s pop song “Cars”? On the subject of the songs on “A Worldly Story” are there any band favorites? If possible can you give me a brief rundown on what each song is about?

Fe26:
We covered “Cars” because it was a unique choice and because it was originally recorded totally on synthesizers. It had a driving groove and we thought it would be cool to “beef it up.” As far as a rundown on each song, we prefer to let the listener make his or her own interpretations.

 

Metal Rules!!
I saw in your bio that you’ve toured with bands like Stuck Mojo, Korn and Madball. I think Fe26 are better then these bands and that musically you are in a different category. Do you categorize yourself with these bands? Or is it just that you’ve lucked into touring with them?

Fe26:
Well, we may all be different musically, but we’re all aggressive and heavy. That’s all that matters. All these bands you’ve mentioned have been extra cool to us, but didn’t have to be. That’s what it’s all about, friendship and respect. As far as Fe26 being better than these bands; thanks allot, but different people have different opinions. We don’t consider ourselves to be better than anybody. We just work as hard as we can at being the best we can be. It’s great playing with these bands, but it’s not luck. Our manager, booking agent, and record company work very hard and we appreciate it.

 

Metal Rules!!
Who are you touring with at the moment? Are their any plans for you to be picked up by another major act’s tour? Is there anyone you’d like to be out supporting? (How about the side stage at this summer’s OzzFest?)

Fe26:
We have about 2 weeks with Stuck Mojo in late July and August and then we’re headlining some shows in August. In September we are going out with Scrub from Washington, DC. We are excited about that. There’s people working on more tours for us. The OzzFest is amazing. Unfortunately we missed the NC show because we were in New York doing some showcasing. Maybe next year. We’d love to stay out with Stuck Mojo permanently. Those guys are our best friends. If not, maybe Powerman 5000, Clutch, Helmet, Machine Head, Korn, Vision of Disorder,……the list could go on and on.

 

Metal Rules!!
I think your vocals are great. How did you develop such a versatile vocal style? Did it come to you naturally? Who are you influences? I hear a mix of such vocalists as Lane Stanley (Alice In Chains), Max Cavalera (ex-Sepultura), and Chris Barnes (Six Feet Under). Have any of these vocalists influenced your style?

Fe26:
It pretty much came naturally to me. I’ve been singing all my life. You also have to consider the feel of the music. The aggression just came out. As far as influences, you got one of them, Max from Sepultura. I’ve also been heavily influenced by Mike Patton of Faith No More and Henry Rollins.

 

Metal Rules!!
Where do you to see Fe26 in say 5 years? Would you be content to stay at the popularity level you’re at now or are you committed to “making it”?? Do you think the metal / heavy music environment in North America today will allow for a band like Fe26 to achieve this?

Fe26:
5 years from now we will most likely be on the road. Everything comes full circle. Heavy music is very much alive and well. It’s just not mainstream right now. You have to use every outlet possible to get your music out there and it will happen. Making it to us is making enough money to live on and stay on the road. We are totally committed to taking this as far as possible. Hopefully our popularity will continue to grow. For now, we are concentrating on the shows and the new material. You have to believe in yourself and the music. If you do that, the rest will fall into place. Thanks for your support!!!

 

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