Furyon Interview by Mark Dean
Matt Mitchell – Lead Vocals
Lee Farmery – Drummer
Gravitas the bands new album is out there as Furyon have the chops, and also the musicianship. Put in a blender Iron Maiden, Alice in chains and Alter bridge, shake them up, add some spicy taste, call a producer named Rick Beato (Shinedown,Fozzy) and you will get the bombastic Furyon sound.
The album has no best track as all of them are really ten rock weapons. Furyons guitars are stunning, and the dynamics among them are epic. A separate mention must go to lead singer Matt Mitchell, an outstanding singer with a huge vocal versatility capable of both retaining the high notes, but also to be both melodic and heavy.
I managed to speak to the band just prior to their show at the Diamond Rock Club in N.Ireland.
Hi guys can you please introduce yourselves and your role in Furyon??
Matt "Hi im Matt Mitchell-lead vocals from Furyon
Lee"And im Lee Farmery the drummer from Furyon"
Can you outline Furyon’s history to Dat?
Matt: We are just about to play the Diamond Rock Club in N.Ireland and have my first Guinness on the go! About 7 years ago the band was formed…there has been a couple of lineup changes too.
At the start it was myself and guitarist Chris Green.
It came together from the ashes of a band of ours, we had a different bass player, that was actually Lee’s cousin and a drummer. The drummer left as he could no longer commit anymore…Lee then joined. We had a slow start.
There was a local rock club in Brighton and we found it easy to get gigs as we had changed styles slightly some people found that hard to accept. Simon left and moved to America,s o we needed to find a bassist.
We went through a couple of bassists before finding Nickel, our current bassist; he is the youngest member of the band and came from the Carribean. I think its because he grew up where he did, he has a different attitude to things, Ive never met a guy like him. For a 28 year old, hes really got his head screwed on and he plays bass like a mutha fucka also which helps!
Regarding the bands musical influences and specifically with Nickel’s arrival, did he bring something new and different to the bands sound?
Lee: We all have a collective bond of bands that we all enjoy listening to. Matt goes for singer-songwriters like Chris Cornell (Soundgarden). Nickel like his prog and a lot more heavier stuff.
Matt: The thing about Nickel, he grew up with Caribbean influences. His influences are extreme between heavy and also some light melodic rock, which would almost be too sickly for me personally.
The prog element with Nickel and also Lee, with Rush, Porcupine Tree and bands like that. Pat the guitarist is a huge fan of thrash, Megadeth, Exodus etc. If you listen to his guitar playing, his style is very much influenced by that. The other guitarist Chris Green; who’s currently in America, in Chicago, has different influences again.
The album Gravitas to me personally seems to have been out for a long time, but yet has only just been released on Frontiers?
Lee: We have done stuff both with Metal Hammer, and Classic Rock"
Matt: It’s basically been out there and our producer Rick Beaton (Shinedown/Fozzy) said that we needed to get it more out there.
We made a collectors edition; a small amount probably around 1,000 copies, with that edition we included animation artwork, and also a video.
The official release also has two acoustic tracks. The Japanese version actually has 3 acoustic songs and now its been released and physically in the stores. The limited version is available through our official network.
With Gravitas out now finally officially, have you written any new Furyon band material?
Matt: We have started writing for a 2nd album, although there is still a lot of people that are not familiar with Gravitas across the rest of Europe, America and Japan where its getting released, so its still fresh to them. We will bleed new material gradually into UK dates initially.
What was it like working with an established producer like Rick Beato?
Lee: He’s an amazing producer! The connection actually came through Kip Winger. We chatted to Kip about several bands eg Shinedown whose recorded sound we liked, he was good friends with Rick, whos a great producer. He’s very precise in his production style.
Matt: He was very methodical about the way he recorded vocals, that I’ve never experienced through working with other producers previously. He has a different method.
Lee: He had pedigree, for a fresh band like us, that goes a long way"
How would you define the Furyon sound?
Matt: Its not an 80’s sound, it is heavy with elements of grunge-Alice in chains, Soundgarden. Even recently people have said elements of Corrosion of Conformity and Skid Row,some of those more melodic bands that I had not previously considered.
How did the label deal with the melodic Frontiers come about, you are hardly a typical act for them?
Matt: That was through our Pr company Rock + Growl with Axl. We certainly are not a typical band on the label, they dont work with label matching up.
Lee: We are playing Bloodstock, and have previously played High Voltage. A perfect band for us to go out with would be somebody like Disturbed. That would be our ready-made crowd.
Matt: We recently supported 80’s band Vain in London; completely poorly matched!
Although early days into the bands career, which of your songs personally stand out for you that is your favourite either to have recorded or play live. Currently what is your favourite from the album?
Matt: Something like Desert Suicide
You have a couple of acoustic tracks on the album, is that a side that the band would be keen to explore in the future?
Matt: It’s something that has always been there for us. I still play acoustic gigs live, outside of Furyon.
Lee: Songs are originally basically created with their melodies on acoustic guitars, it is the way we write. There’s a few different aspects, including acoustic, that we get chords and melodies together.
Final question; What are the bands plans for the rest of 2012?
Matt: We have a couple of festivals coming up; Bloodstock, Gods of Metal is in Milan that we are doing but unfortunately not Download, as the bookings have now closed. We want to get everywhere, booking, agents etc everything has to slot together.
Lee: Axl; our manager is good, before that we were essentially self-managed and it was hard graft to get ourselves gigs like High Voltage. Metal Hammer, Classic-Future publishing took us under their wing and helped us. Metal Hammer are doing a version of our album also contributed.
Thanks for chatting guys enjoy the show tonight!
Gravitas by Furyon is out now on Frontiers Records