As the members of Seax were prepping for a road trip to perform at a festival in Ohio last week, a few of the members took some time to talk about their new release “High on Metal.”
Just as bassist Matt C. Axe started to explaining how everyone in the band digs “old-school” metal in addition to whatever else he likes, singer Carmine Blades chimed in to interrupt: “Metal is not old-school; it’s timeless.”
And that’s the feel of Seax’s “High on Metal.” Even though the band is blazing through a set of twin-guitar speed and thrash, you don’t feel like you’re listening to an Overkill cover band. Crackling energy and unrepentant attitude drive the disc, with the whole thing barreling along like a thrill ride that might fly off the track at any second.
Seax is part of a wave of melodic metal coursing through the Mass clubs right now, as Skull Hammer, Lich King, Ravage, and the like make the rounds.
“It’s an incestuous scene. A lot of us play in each other’s bands,” says Axe (who works with Skull Hammer and Sonic Pulse). “We all play shows together, and there definitely feels like there is a resurgence of this kind of metal. But more importantly we’re all buddies and go to each other’s shows. It feels like a scene, like the Bay Area when all those thrash bands were friends.”
The scene comes to Ralph’s Diner, 148 Grove St., Worcester, on Thursday, July 5, as Seax releases “High on Metal” at this week’s Metal Thursday showcase. Borrowed Time, Ancient Power, and Invoker are also on the bill. Show time is 9 p.m.
Former Zircon guitarist Hel formed Seax in 2010, and after few lineup changes the band now also include Mick Mayer on guitar, Dino Gustavo on drums, Blades, and Axe.
“High on Metal” is unbridled celebration of metal as mythology, way of life, philosophy and simply kick-ass music. It's over-the-top by design.
“What I like about this band is that everyone is into the showmanship. If you’re not going to go ballistic on stage, no one is going to care,” Mayer says. “People like to see a band go crazy. And with this band it goes beyond the stage. The first time I met these guys we just hung out and it was a shit show.”
Musically, Seax employs the tried-and-true twin-guitar dust up. Hel and Mayer switch between harmonized parts and dueling solos that never fall below the pace of a quick gallop. Blades rides across the top of the guitars with his banshee wails and lyrical sneers.
The songs are all variations of a battle cry in a war to make the world just that much more metal to the core. But as lofty as Seax gets, the whole thing has a scrappy, street-level scuzz to it.
“I’m into thrash and old punk, so that just naturally filters in,” Axe says. “Our goal was just to be fast, heavy, and loud.”
Done, done, and done.
“High on Metal” will be available at the show Thursday and then via iTunes, Amazon and the band’s page at www.facebook.com/seaxmetal