Interview with Dave Ingram, Vocalist of Hail of Bullets
June 13, 2016
Interview by InfamousButcher
All extreme metal fans are familiar with the work of Dave Ingram. The vocalist fronted Benediction during their heyday in the 90’s, growling his way through classic albums like THE GRAND LEVELLER and TRANSCEND THE RUBICON. He also had a memorable turn in Bolt Thrower on HONOUR, VALOUR, PRIDE and has been involved with numerous other projects. Most recently he joined Hail of Bullets as their new singer. I was lucky enough to witness their mind-blowing performance at Maryland DeathFest XIV last month with Dave at the helm for the first time! Let me tell you, I’ve seen a lot of shit, and this was one for the ages! I did have the pleasure of meeting Dave at MDF, but due to timing we ended up conducting the interview remotely.
DI: There was a lot to try and remember from those days – which were between 23 and 26 years ago! But each recording session had its moments. From listening to the guitarist recording solos and thinking “he should have stopped there” every damn time, or the disc drive sounding like a duck quacking, or having guest musicians in and getting pissed with them….so many memories come flooding back.
IB: The song DARK IS THE SEASON was inspired by the David Lynch film BLUE VELVET. How did the song come about?
DI: I first saw that film in 1989 and it terrified me, more so than any horror movie out at the time (or since, truth be known.) The very real and seedy underbelly of small-town America brought to macabre life by Lynch. I wanted to write a song for it from day one of my tenure in Benediction but there hadn’t been a song I thought was right for it…until we wrote the music that went on to become “Dark Is The Season”. Bit of trivia: The song was originally called “Darkest Of Seasons” but the label misprinted it on the press release and we liked it, so kept it.
IB: You’re written many great songs about serial killers – “Jumping At Shadows”, “Born in a Fever”, “Down on Whores”. etc. Have you always had an interest in serial killers?
DI: I did. Past tense. Though nowadays I’m still interested in Jack The Ripper, but it’s more the period – and the clothes!! One of my other projects is a very Swedish sounding OSDM style so maybe I will take up the serial killer banner for some of those songs. I haven’t written them yet, so who knows?
IB: Starting with THE DREAMS YOU DREAD and even moreso with GRIND BASTARD, Benediction’s sound became lighter with more of a punk influence. Was this an intentional change or did it come naturally?
DI: It was a natural progression, though I would have preferred it to remain the DM style of TRANCEND THE RUBICON, but obviously with some subtle differences.
IB: In the late 90s you joined Bolt Thrower and went on to record HONOUR, VALOUR, PRIDE. What was it like being part of that legendary band?
DI: Yes, I joined Bolt Thrower in 1998. Though I need to clear up the misconception that I took over from Martin on vocals. I did not. Martin parted ways with BT a couple of YEARS earlier. The band got Karl in to record the Mercenary album with them, and then I joined shortly after its release. So the ONLY time I “took over” from Martin was in Hail Of Bullets.
IB: When did you start Down Among the Dead Men? Will you continue that band as a side project?
DI: DATDM started in 2013 and we’ve 2 albums out (and a limited edition 7”) and it’s right now I need to clear up another misconception – one that I mentioned earlier. I’ve had a lot of people saying “welcome back!” on my joining Hail Of Bullets, citing I had been inactive since leaving Bolt Thrower. These folks couldn’t be more wrong, and here’s why. Since leaving Bolt Thrower I have done the following: Downlord (Danish band) 2 albums. Metal Breakfast Radio – Internet radio for the last 8 years, and still going. Down Among The Dead Men – 2 full length albums and a 7″. Echelon – Full length album (recording a second one RIGHT NOW) Multiple guest appearances over the last decade on many albums. Next projects will be a new Echelon (full length), New Down Among The Dead Men (full length), URSINNE (brand new project, full length), Just Before Dawn: reprise of appearance on the project. So….not in a band? Inactive? Welcome back??! Where the fuck were they for the last 10 years?
IB: You’ve been part of so many legendary death metal bands and it was truly an honor to meet you. What achievements are you most proud of?
DI: There are many achievements and I am proud of every single one. Yes, some were smaller than others, but they were fought for tooth and nail by me and those involved. And we won through. I shall continue to make music and release it for those that want to hear it. Thank you for the interview; it was an absolute pleasure to both partake in it and to also meet you. Just sorry we couldn’t get it done on that day! Hopefully we can meet again next time around.
Top 5 albums (pretty current):
Fever Ray – Fever Ray
Bolt Thrower – Those Once Loyal
Paganizer – On A Gurney To Hell
Bonesaw – The Illicit Revue
Queens of the Stone Age – Era Vulgaris
Links of interest:
DOWNLORD back-catalogue, free download: www.metalbreakfastradio.com/Downlord.zip