MAAX (U.S.) Interview by Aquelarre Magazine

MAAX (U.S.) Interview

by Aquelarre Magazine

By Aquelarre Magazine

Aquelarre Magazine: Hello Metalheads, What inspired you to play such an evil music?

MAAX: Metal is something that is just in your blood and speaks to each of us in a different way. As I  was growing up I as the 9 year old kid wearing the Motorhead shirt in the back of the class. I was still  shitting my diapers when these guys hit the 4th and 5th grade, so being younger than the rest of the  guys and missing out on the biggest metal era of all time, I had to dig through the chronicles of metal  to find what it is that calls to me. The 80’s is by far one of the most inspiring times as a metal  musician. Seeing the big acts on stage and on MTV (when they played music) I knew I couldn’t do  anything else but. As time progressed so did my taste for bigger heavier… and more evil. Like the rest  of the guys the heavier it got the more I kept searching for the next band to cross that line even  further. Black Metal has to be the greatest genre out there (in my opinion, of course), not only is the  music awe-inspiring but the lyrical content drives the point home (not to mention the early history of  the genre being as intense as it is). Dawnbringer was definitely very evil, black, and cold. With Six  Pack Witchcraft and Unholy Rock & Roll we really let our 80’s heavy metal influences shine through  while still maintaining that black metal egde giving us a more… black and roll sound.

Aquelarre Magazine: What was the reaction of friends and family to Maax and their music?

MAAX: What the hell is he saying? And you guys sure sound… evil… Is probably the top two I hear  the most when it comes to family and friends, but they support us 110% which is fucking great, we  couldn’t ask for anything more.

Aquelarre Magazine: Can you tell a brief history of the band and the current line-up?

MAAX: MAAX formed from the ashes of another band known as Dyngyr (pronounced Die-in-gear).  Kyle Krieder, Jeff Brown, and Sky Kingery collaborated on MAAX in the beginning of it all and  spread the foundations for what MAAX has become today. Kyle, Jeff, and Sky wrote and recorded  Dawnbringer together. Shortly after the album was released, Sky left to pursue other endeavors in his  life. This left both the vocals and bass positions open. I (Brett Schlagel) gave Kyle a call upon hearing  the news and told him I’ve got the bass and the skill and the next day I was MAAX’s new bass player.  Tim Greene came into the picture just after I did with the vocals that sound like something from Hell  itself… which fit us perfectly. After writing and recording Six Pack Witchcraft I traded the old bass in  for a Les Paul and we started the making of Unholy Rock & Roll with Jeremy Starkey of  Necrophagous on bass. Unholy is a solid album with an even more solid line up. Just a few weeks  before Unholy was to be released to the public Jeff Brown departed from MAAX to follow other  endeavors as well. So what is a Black Metal band without a solid drummer? This is where Dave  Dalton comes in. This guy is a machine and is one of the most incredible drummers I’ve yet to meet.  Dave has been with Kyle, Tim, Jeremy, and I now for several months and I must say… MAAX is more  heavier than ever and is a hell of a force to be reckoned with. The next recordings are sure to drop  jaws.

Aquelarre Magazine: Does it ever get boring playing the same music night after night?

MAAX: We have quite the library of songs to build a set list from so we tend to mix things up from  show to show. As long as the crowd keeps moving, heads keep banging, and fists keep pumping it will  never get boring.

Aquelarre Magazine: What kind of music do you guys listen to offstage?

MAAX: Personally my playlist is mainly 80’s hair metal and all things black metal. I have everything  from Skid Row, Motley Crue, Kix, Ratt, Judas Priest and Motorhead to Immortal, Satyricon,  Darkthrone, Carpathian Forest, Celtic Frost, and Watain. The occasional death metal sneaks in there  from time to time like Grave or Deicide. The same can really be said about Kyle and Dave, we are all  on the same page as far as that goes. Tim and Jeremy are into Black Metal but Death Metal is  typically what they are blaring in their iPods. Tim is a big fan of Jungle Rot for sure. Jeremy listens to  a lot of Cannibal Corpse, Deicide, and Destroyer 666.

Aquelarre Magazine: The music and lyrics of MAAX are awesome, What is the inspiration for the  lyrics?

MAAX: The main theme and inspiration is definitely something a little darker. The line We are the  anti-christian race… From Rot and Roll pretty much sums it . We did want to add that 80’s sleaze to it  too. Booze, beers, bitches, and good ol’ Lucifer wrapped up nicely in this five piece black and roll fury  known as MAAX.

Aquelarre Magazine: How did the songwriting process for Unholy Rock & Roll compare to your  previous work?

MAAX: Two guitars, bigger leads, bigger choruses, and bigger riffs. We knew the direction we wanted  to take Unholy Rock & Roll as soon as the two-guitar thing came about. There was a lot of time spent  writing a song… And then rewriting the song… and then rewriting the musical phrases.. And  rearranging structures and so on. We knew what we wanted to hear and were not stopping until  everything was the way we wanted it. We wanted to bring in that 80’s feel with the big choruses that  would stick in your head and big solos that made you want to dust off the old air guitar. I will say the  lead work is very different on Unholy. I did the majority of the lead work and wanted to put some  particular elements into the solos on purpose, I wanted to cause those momentary flashbacks for the  seasoned metalhead/rock and roller. Some solos were more Slayer esque where as others have that  Randy Rhodes and Zakk Wylde flare.

Aquelarre Magazine: There’s a lot more technology in the studio now. Were you trying to keep the  sound more raw?

MAAX: There is such a thing as over producing. We are a live band and that is exactly what we aimed  to capture on Unholy. We recorded everything live, if one of us screwed up we redid the song and that  was that. We tracked the vocals and the leads later so no mic bledding interfered but wanted to really  strive for that live in your face sound.

Aquelarre Magazine: How did you end up using the name MAAX? Do you know of any other band  trying to use it?

MAAX: In the days of AOL instant messaging Satan himself shot us an IM telling us we had no other  choice but to use the name MAAX. He didn’t specify the reason but who are we to argue with the  Dark Lord? I am not aware of any other band attempting to use tha name at the time, but how often  does Satan IM anyone anymore… seriously?

Aquelarre Magazine: What are some good memories you have of the band and some bad ones?

MAAX: From parking lot pre-parties and duct tape pentagrams to biker club quarrels and poisonous  chronic farts in tight enclosed spaces, we have had our fair share of both.

Aquelarre Magazine: Do you miss the old days of dubbing tapes and mailing stuff at the pose office?

MAAX: Ha ha! We still dub tapes! Slightly more advanced with a 4 track recorder but we still love the  sound of an old tape, there is a rumor that MAAX may release previous albums on tapes in the near  future for those diehard fans.

Aquelarre Magazine: Thanks for the interview and also want to thank Scott of CLAWHAMMER PR  to set up this Interview. And Please feel free to add anything else you would like our readers to know  about MAAX?

MAAX: I want to thank all the mother fuckers out there supporting us and your local scene. Without  you guys there is no us. Support. Support. Support. In this new age of downloadable music it is more  important than ever for us bands that you pick up some merch while you’re there at the show, weather  it is just a sticker or CD or hoodie it all helps out more than you know and we cannot thank all of you  Bastards enough! Check out our Facebook and give us a like so you can be up-to-date on MAAX  news at facebook.com/maaxmetal. Cheers fuckers!! 

Article appears in Aquelarre Magazine #12

Maax links:

Myspace: www.myspace.com/maaxmetal

Facebook: www.facebook.com/maaxmetal

Reverbnation: www.reverbnation.com/maax

Last fm: www.last.fm/music/Maax

Abyss Records links:

Online Label & Online Music Store: www.officialabyssrecords.com

Myspace: www.myspace.com/abyssrecordsofficial

Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Abyss-Records/164573050232055

Reverbnation: www.reverbnation.com/label/abyssrecords

Last fm: www.last.fm/label/AbyssRecords

Youtube: www.youtube.com/user/MinionfortheAbyss

Other links:

To purchase MAAX “Unholy Rock & Roll” DIGI CD and other Maax merchandise go to: www.officialabyssrecords.com/advanced_search_result.php?keywords=maax

To preview a song from their 2010 release “Six Pack Witchcraft” go to: www.youtube.com/watch?v=giNCctZobOE

and to preview a song from their debut album “Dawnbringer” go to: www.youtube.com/watch?v=7uNDPFcYcdw

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