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Sean Peck (Cage)

Interview with Sean Peck from Cage
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 28 May 2012, 7:19 PM

The US Heavy / Power Metal menace of CAGE has been a part of the Metal world for years. To celebrate their fabulous release of “Supremacy Of Steel”, Steinmetal talked with the band’s unending screaming voice that has crossed the Halford boundary, Sean Peck, about the band’s new album, some past tales, side projects and what will comes next for the US Metal scene.

Hey Sean, how have you been? Thanks for willing to take on this interview for Metal Temple Magazine, this is quite an honor.

Damn sorry it took so long to get back with this!  Just been on fire writing some new sonic destruction.  When you get in the mode you get stuck and you have to let it flow.  You have seen the TENACIOUS D episode where they explain all that!

So as I see and hear nowadays you are quite a busy man whether it’s your personal life, CAGE or other music projects that you are involved in. How do you manage it?

My actual occupation allows me lots of time now to concentrate on my passion.  We sacrificed our early band success for personal success and now we have all kinds of time on tour and make killer Metal! 3 of us are semi retired (not retarded, retired!) so we can turn on the Metal full blast now. Many of us are working some side project action right now. Now we are able to tour more than ever and see places and meet people in places where we never played before.

Near the end of last year your all time band, CAGE, released another destructive Heavy Metal album by the name "Supremacy Of Steel", once again by Music By Mail. I must say that once again you guys came through with an astounding 80s Metal attack. How do you sum up the making of the album? How is the Metal world taking it?

It has really been interesting on this one. All kinds of MANOWAR-esque comments have come flowing through like this is Metal as fuck. More Metal is not possible all kinds of stuff like that. I think between the album’s cover and the song “Metal Empire” and the title people really took this album as a tribute to Metal itself with us making a defenders of the faith type statement. The album has done really well and the reviews were awesome as always.  We got album of the month for the fourth time in a row from “Heavy” Magazine in Germany no other band has achieved it! Also number 2 on the Rock Hard charts was our highest placing ever for the magazine that started it all for us. We pushed the envelope a bit again with some orchestration, blast beats and some new voices I used. But it had a few more mid tempo tracks that made it not quite the constant relentless Speed Metal attack “Science Of Annihilation” was. I think it has some really great songs on it and now that we have mixed some of this into the live set we are a wrecking ball!!!

In comparison to a hefty share of bands nowadays that chose to leave the straightforwardness of Heavy Metal aside in order to redefine themselves or crossing over into other modern subgenres in Metal, you guys like several of the gods of the genre remained true even the Metal audience in the US has gone modern over the years. What has been keeping you going on doing the same thing?

Well we just write what we thing is bad ass!  We are not afraid of evolving and keep doing it with some of the things I mentioned earlier. Crossing genres or sounding different in spots keeps it fresh. On “Science Of Annihilation” you can hear some KING DIAMOND, some SABATON, some PRIEST and other influences as well.  The important thing is to have great songs which are always the focus for us.  We still continue to experiment and improve.  The foundation of all these subgenres is what we play and are rooted in just pure true heavy metal.  That is what moves me and we have just been able to speed it up and scream to the heavens like nobody else.

Back to "Supremacy Of Steel". After releasing some great albums over the years, do you think that this album is your "Painkiller" or "Number Of The Beast"?

I know it is a really good album. Everybody has a different favorite CAGE CD and that is always great to hear. Lots of the reviews said it was our best ever but that is a tough one. I think it is on par with the last 3 CDs but is it our best?  I love lots of the songs on it and sometimes judge them by how many tracks would make a CAGE best of CD.  “Science Of Annihilation”has 4-5 I would say that would make it so that is pretty good.

Considering levels of complexity, do you think "Supremacy Of Steel" changed you in a way for the better? Is it a step forward in CAGE's career?

I would say it has moved us forward with some of the new elements for sure. Our next endeavor will move it forward even more. It is a fine line showing your shredding and still making the songs not too Proggy. I like a song you can sink your teeth into and have it meet expectations while surprising in a few spots.  Tough trick.

What has been interesting for some time is how haven't you guys been approached by the bigger labels like Nuclear Blast, Century Media, Metal Blade etc or was it your decision not to come forward to them in the first place?

The whole label thing is so depressing. The business is just shit and I have yet to have a good experience with a label except for what is going on now with our distro deal in Europe. We do everything for ourselves that a label would normally do and make more profit with each album now than if we did 5 licensing deals today. I get all the reports from my friends that are in well known bands on how shitty the money is so we are sticking to our DIY system now. As you can see in “Science Of Annihilation” the booklet and packaging are second to none, better than any Nuclear Blast or Century Media package out there. All paid for by us and designed by us and with the help of our killer fans we have done well with it. Our preorders were off the charts and the amount of stuff we crammed in there had everyone really happy with what we gave for the money. We will continue to slowly climb the ladder as we go.  Now if a label wants to talk about a real partnership then we of course we would listen and have been approached by many well known labels already.

Now let's talk about you for a bit. Aside from CAGE you are involved in several of other Metal projects. One of these projects are the Aussie oriented EMPIRES OF EDEN. How did you got to it? What is your appreciation of it? Will there be further collaboration?

Our old manager hooked me up with Stu Marshall who was a CAGE fan.  We started working on the song “Total Devastation” and we really hit it off and really worked well together. That song was the killer on that album so he came out and visited and sat in with CAGE playing some songs on stage with us. I did the title track on his new release “Channeling The Infinite” and helped him with 2 others that became bonus tracks.  Yes there will be further collaboration for sure.

Are there other projects you are working on besides EMPIRE OF EDEN?

I did a track for SECRET SPHERE out of Italy which came out really killer. I was asked by FIFTH ANGEL to maybe do their record but the timing was just not right.  As I said Norm has PSYCHOTIC WALTZ going now, Dave may do a side record, Pete plays in a PRIEST cover band (not sure why ha!) so yes there might be something I have cooking on the side (Damn I wish I could spill the beans it is huge!).

What are your notions regarding the Metal scene in the US. Will there be a comeback of the great 80s US Metal as a replacement for all that New American Metal going on?

I think Metal is in a really good place in the US now. Bands like KAMELOT can do well, NIGHTWISH sold out and the big 4 played stadiums. The kids are really into it and for a while we were playing nothing but all ages shows. It remains to be seen worldwide if there will ever be another IRON MAIDEN or JUDAS PRIEST.  I wish it was us!

As for CAGE, are you currently working on material for the next release? Where CAGE is headed when it comes to future gigs?

Touring is a bit up in the air right now so we are working on the follow up record now.  It will be a concept record horror style in the vein of an “Abigail”.  This task it would seem will be very difficult to do right. Many have tried and none have done very well with it.  So as usual I am very nervous about it.

Sean I would like to thank you for sharing your thoughts with Metal Temple. I wish you personally and CAGE the best of luck on the road ahead. Stay Metal!

Thanks again and please all of you check us out at www.cageheavymetal.com



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