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Vulture's Mattes "Randy Outlaw": "What makes me go berserk is probably the music of Katy Perry or any German Schlager music, so I can definitely agree with those studies, haha!"

Interview with Mattes "Randy Outlaw" from Vulture
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 19 August 2019, 11:25 PM

Being one with Horror, one with old school Metal music, a perfect combination for yet another Vulture album. Surely came as quite an inspiring release from the German gang, "Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves" killed it and it is burning similar to the old flame. Steinmetal had a chance to talk to Mattes aka "Randy Outlaw" of the band regarding the new album, songwriting, covering, marketing and more…

Hello Mattes, thank you for taking the time for this interview for Metal Temple online magazine. I understand that you are quite busy these days promoting hard Vulture’s new album?

Hey mate, thank you for having us. We’ve had a busy summer indeed, played a lot of festivals like Rock Hard, Metal Magic and Metalheadz Open Air, just to name a few. Next big thing to come will be our first ever European Tour supporting RAM together with Indian Nightmare. Going to be sick!

"Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves" is the title of your sophomore album, continuing your journey with Metal Blade Records as support. From where I am sitting it feels and looks like a package of horror stories, more of the b-movies kind of the 80s. Is that the case with the ongoings throughout the album? If not, what is?

We draw our inspiration from all kinds of horror and murder stories. "Fed To Sharks" for example is loosely inspired by "Jaws", the idea behind "Tyrantula" was to deliver a story like 50s/60s horror movies and "Beyond The Blade" has got this "Giallo" vibe as you can see in the music video. Also, we’re big fans of old Carpenter movies, what made us write those cheesy synthie intros.

I believe that one of the reasonable questions is in order to ask, does "Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves" represent a Vulture that made progress with its music or rather remained adamant and continued its pattern from the debut? What were the chief elements that were perfected in your music, in comparison to the debut?

For us it was a balancing act to progress our music while still maintaining all relevant trademarks that Vulture stands for. For me, ”Ghastly Waves And Battered Graves" is a whole lot more Vulture, as you can find more and diverse melodies, slower parts and also mid-tempo songs on the album. On the other hand, there are still those fast riffs with raging speed and we developed those synthie intros that we’ve had since our very first recordings.

Continuing with the same direction, how would you describe the songwriting process on "Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves"?

The songwriting process was really different compared to our previous recordings. Gereon joined the band by the end of 2017, so it was the first time we were working on songs as a quintet with a permanent drummer. Since we live widely spread all over Germany, we don’t get to rehearse too often, meaning that a lot of songwriting happens at home, sharing the ideas online and evolving them. To get an overall idea, how each song would sound in the final version, we spend a lot of effort in recording a pre-production.

The evilized kind of feel of the vocals along with the speedy early British Metal orientation is surely a massive blast, and maintains the frantic pace of the past. Other than being a fan of the era, which I am sure you guys are, what makes protecting that vintage vision and put into work, especially with a modernized Metal scene looming all around?

When we formed Vulture, we were quite clear about our musical direction. We wanted to play the music that’s been following and impressing us since our early teenage years and we are passionate about the music that we play and that’s inspiring us. It’s evil, it’s dangerous, it’s thrilling and in some way timeless. I simply can’t find those aspects in what people call modern Metal.

You surely provided Thin Lizzy a run for the money by covering “Killer On The Loose”, made it a blasting, blackened and Metallic blaze. What was behind the decision to cover this exact track of the classic Irish band? Were there other song candidates that ran through your mind before penciling this one?

That was a pretty easy decision to be honest. We like to cover Hard Rock songs, as we did before with Deep Purple's "Stormbringer" and Judas Priest's "Rapid Fire". It’s fascinating to show up the similarities between those early Proto Heavy Metal songs and Speed / Thrash Metal by simply speeding them up a bit and adding some components here and there. The choice for "Killer On The Loose" fell because we’re all big Thin Lizzy fans and the lyrics of this specific song fit perfectly for Vulture.

Who produced that 80s Metal sound on "Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves"? It magically sounds closer to the old days. Do you believe that you found your sound on this release?

Once again we worked together with Marco Brinkmann / Hellforge Studios. We had worked together on "Victim To The Blade" and also "The Guillotine" and he had a huge impact on the specific sound of all instruments. He’s a big metal fan to the bone and knows exactly what sound we’re aiming for. I simply couldn’t think of anyone better. I’m indeed sure, we found the perfect sound for this release. It’s important that the sound corresponds with the music itself. So, if the next album is going to sound similar will depend on our new songs I guess.

I am more than positive that you are a deranged fan of all of your tunes on this record, yet there has to be that one the truly slices you open with its impact. Please elaborate on your pick

Tough one, haha. I think the song of my choice is "Ghastly Waves And Battered Graves". The title track has this really cool triplets feeling, a massive chorus with all those gang shouts and some of my favorite guitar solos on the whole record. My second choice would probably be "Stainless Glare", just because it has the best verse riff we’ve written so far.

A few studies suggest the Heavy Metal music is actually a nerve calmer, making people soothing rather than berserk, looking only to wreck things. Do you agree with that assessment? Aren’t we supposed to be wild, free and angry?

What makes me go berserk is probably the music of Katy Perry or any German Schlager music, so I can definitely agree with those studies, haha!

It has been rather common for Metal bands to promote themselves in other areas outside the music, like merch that isn’t merely a t-shirt, hoodies or caps. The newest of them all is Metallica’s 500 piece jigsaw puzzles of their classic albums’ artworks, to be marketed in September. As an old schooler in vision, do you believe that it is too much? Is it that hard for a band to make a living out of music, even when you are big as Metallica?

Well, just keep in mind, what sorts of merch bands like Kiss or Iron Maiden have sold over the years. I also know, there is a Rammstein dildo existing and someone might be using it, haha. So, if people wouldn’t buy it, those kinds of weird or let’s say creative merchandise just wouldn’t exist. Metalheads are collectors, so who am I to judge?

With "Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves" out and about, have you been planning to tour in order to support the album? Any special shows in the works?

We’ll be on tour with RAM and Indian Nightmare this September and also have a few single shows left for this year. Since we recently signed a contract with Dragon Productions, known as the booking agency of such bands like Exciter, Razor and Raven, there is storm brewing that no one is safe from.

Mattes, I would like to thank you for the interview, your new album is superb, capturing the essence of a classic era at full swing. Cheers mate!



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