Thursday 9 May 2013

Interview time with Ruby the Hatchet

Ruby the Hatchet has been steadily picking up attention these past couple of months. Followers of the site might be aware of my love of their music. Something about the enticing female vocals mixed with that classic psychedelic sound just does it for me.

A couple months ago I did a short interview with the band, sadly it got lost in the jungle which is my inbox. Thankfully today while digging through all the spam and less than stellar band submissions, I stumbled across it. So without further ado...

Check out their latest single 'Paralyzed' while you read the interview. The more Ruby the Hatchet the better!

1. Lets start this off with the basics, how about a quick introduction of the band?
Mike Parise-bass
Owen Stewart -drums
Jillian Taylor-vocals
Johnny  -guitar

2. What made you decide to start a band, where did the name come from?
We had the pleasure of being trapped in a house during a snow storm a few years back, everyone but Mike that is. We were talking about old blues artists and rock albums most of the night and that sparked a jam session. One thing led to another and the band kind of just happened. It was the three of us for a little while. We wrote most of the EP and Mike joined us a bit after.

3. How would you classify your sound? What are a couple of influences in your music?
We're not big fans of describing ourselves. As far as influences go there are the obvious ones like Sabbath and Zeppelin at work. We're all into a lot of the newer heavy psych bands like Dead Meadow, Graveyard, Uncle Acid. Aside from that stuff we've been feeding off a lot of the other local Philly bands. There are a ton of great artists out there right now which is really exciting--The Bailey Hounds, Purling Hiss, Creepoid...all these bands have been killing it. It's inspiring to be around.

4. Lately you guys have been getting a lot of attention, 'Wicked Ones' was featured on the February Metal Hammer compilation. How does something like that happen? I would assume it's good news, yes?
The Self Titled Debut
That Metal Hammer thing kind of just happened. We got an email asking if we wanted to be part of it. It was a great issue with lots of bands we dig. It's been awesome for us and we have had nothing but positive feedback from it.

5. You released a self titled ep back in 2010, was that well received?
We had just started playing shows at that point and the drive to record an EP was to help us book. We wanted to play out more and those few recordings really helped us do that. It definitely didn't get as much attention as Ouroboros but it did exactly what we intended.

6. Were their any changes between then and now that help fine tune 'Ouroboros'?
Absolutely. Everyone has traveled miles since then. During the EP everything was so new to us. We just took what we had and recorded it. Ouroboros had much more thought, time and energy put in. What really made a big difference was our friend Joe Boldizar who owns Retro City Studios in Germantown where we record. When we came back to do Ouroboros, Joe wanted to make a solid album without having to worry about time and money. We experimented and re-tracked things and mixed them over and over. It really made a difference with this album.

7. Getting rave reviews from pretty much everyone that hears it, has 'Ouroboros' surpassed what you expected? Or are you guys just getting started?
All the feedback has been surreal. It's done much more than we could have hoped for, but we are definitely just getting started.

8. For those who don't know, an Ouroboros is an ancient symbol, normally of a serpent eating itself which represents the constant re-creation or eternal return. How does this apply to the music and the band?
I'm sure the answer to this varies between band members. It's comforting to think of it in the sense that the music we like and listen to is still here, even after all the pop garbage and droughts of shredding people are still drawn to rock music the same way they were in the 60s and 70s. It's the eternal return of rock and roll.

9. Looking on your tumblr page, they're many occult images and symbols. Something which is very common in the style of music you play, how do the two relate? What is it that draws you towards them?
 They relate mainly because our music reflects our interests. We have a natural curiosity when it comes to the macabre, like most people. Instead of shying away we shine a light on it. The band seems to be the appropriate place to channel it. Plus we're all in a secret cult of devil worshipers.

10. 2013 is still early, what does the band hope to achieve by the end of the year? Are their any big plans in motion?
There's a lot in the works...writing, traveling, more recording.

 Well, I don't want to take up too much of your time. I hope you enjoy the questions as much as I enjoy your music! Any final words to your fans and potential new ones?
Pulvis et umbra sumus - A quick google search for you, "We are all but dust and shadows"

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