A strong moral compass in battle with even stronger drinks…
When SKULL FIST set off their first riffs and deliver their third studio album full of authenticity, honesty and shady lyrics, it feels like drowning in a sea of confusing heavy metal morality. The quartet from Toronto, Canada are locked in a life long struggle with a twist on nostalgic heavy metal and a persistent desire for spiritual glory and personal peace. Relight the fire that was started with the debut record and take another step further with every note and word of the new nine song album "Way Of The Road".
With their second album “Chasing The Dream” from 2014, the young Canadians already proved that the album title said it all and that they didn't allow any throwbacks in their career, even though more and more obstacles seemed to appear in their way. After multiple line-up rotations, a broken neck and frontman Zach Slaughter's vocal cord surgery, it temporarily seemed, as if the FIST itself was a double edged knife. But resigning has never been an option:
"It's been 3 years of surgeries and injections", Zach recalls. "I can sing in the studio but I'm still working towards getting together for live gigs. I think I can hack it though, it's a ton of workout and that's ok. I dug myself into the hole so it's up to me to climb back out of the fucker!"
Obviously, Zach somehow took advantage of this forced break by investing his recovery time into songwriting and the development of new ideas resulting in diverse and lyrically as well as musically ambitious tracks.
Mixed by Eric Ratz, "Way Of The Road" will see the light of day in October, and for some, the title might sound like a logical sequel to “Chasing The Dream”. Zach himself sees it as perfect description for the rollercoaster of emotions that had him between disillusionment and hope in the past years: "For me it's a realization that every trait is in you at all times. I guess the balance between compassion and reason. Trying to figure out what is inside your head is a real thought or emotion and what is just social circumstance behavior. I'm just trying to sort out what the flaws are, where they are coming from and how to accept it.”
And although the new album is filled with sing-alongs and passionate anthems, a genuine pain and struggle is omnipresent and seems to find salvation in the music itself:
"I think all of the songs are either loosely based on something that happened or was directly motivated by a specific event in the last few years. I'm trying to take stuff that needs to be buried in the ground. Music is a lot of fun to do, but I think it's a solid way to clear up space in my head. Take all the thoughts and emotions I have about it, shove it onto a track and then try to stop thinking about it, turn them into grave markers. Make room for some nice stuff", he laughs.
As it seems, there will be plenty of said nice stuff in the near future - at this year's Metal Hammer Paradise, SKULL FIST are finally putting their live machinery back into action and make it the beginning of a long journey, that will soon lead them back around the entire world.
The band is back in action, THE FIST SHALL RISE.