!!!THRASH METALPUNK FROM THE USA!!!
We had a conversation with Slammy (Guitars/Vocals). Enjoy!
Welcome to the FILTHY DOGS OF METAL Webzine.
Tell us a few things about RAZORBLADE (Members, Starting Year etc).
JB Bowser- Bass/backing vocals
Well I (Slammy) started the band before I even knew JB and Jay. I had been living in Ohio and moved to Pittsburgh to be with my wife Avery in mid 2021. I wanted to start a new band so I wrote and recorded a demo by myself with the help of my friend James Becca (Fall Fifty Feet). It's titled You Can't Kill Me and I released that February 13 2022. So then I started looking for members and met JB we clicked instantly and have been inseparable ever since. We filtered through a few drummers till we landed on Jay. We were already friends with Jay and went bowling with him so it just clicked and it's been the 3 of us for a year now. I'd also like to say my wife has been a tremendous help the whole time we've been a band. She mans the merch table,drives the tour van and keeps us alive and in line!
You have recently released your single ''Nocturnal Beast''. What is the feedback from your audience as well as from the press?
I'd say people seem to like it! It got a few hundred plays and downloads its first few weeks out!
Label or DIY and why?
We do everything DIY at this point. I book all the tours and shows,we pay for recording and put our own tapes and merch with the help of our friends that are in other local bands! Noah the guitarist in Princess records us and Christian from Nasty Nancy dubs our tapes for us. We pay for most everything with money we make on tour,and I throw in to but its my brain child so I don't mind. But we wouldn't be opposed to help from a label. I've sent out some emails here and there,so we'll see what the future holds. As much work as it is,it's a labor of love and I love being in a band and helping other bands. It definitely keeps me busy and out of trouble.
Is there any funny or weird story from the recordings or from your live shows that you would like to share with us?
There's to many to tell haha. But when we were recording Nocturnal Beast Jay kept going and made the song longer than it originally was and we just kept playing with him so at the end of the recording you hear him say whoops and I go that was awesome! So we just kept it and I extended the solo and added the gang vocal part that the boys in Princess helped us out with! It was definitely a happy accident. I love the way it turned out!
Do you prefer Vinyl, Tape, CD or Digital Format and why is that?
I'm a vhs nerd so I definitely lean towards tapes,I also just like CDs cause my car has a CD player and I can listen to my friends bands while I drive to work. I have the new Acid Mass album in there right now and I listen to it every day. Vinyl is cool but I don't have a record player anymore. And Digital also has its part because in today's world unfortunately we're all on the internet,so it can be a cool tool to get your music out there to new people!
It is a Power Trip rip off with working QR codes that go to our web site that JB made. With our Razor logo drawn by our good friend Josh Lay from Black Knife.
Your music style is Thrash MetalPunk. Which are your main influences (Favourite Artists / Bands etc.)
Megadeth is my favorite band of all time hands down! Then obviously Slayer and Anthrax. Power Trip, Toxic Holocaust, Midnight, Inepsy, Anti-Cimex, and Black Knife. I could go on but that's definitely the core. We're all into different stuff too,Jay is definitely the Cruster D-beat guy and JB is into punk and obscure stuff. He loves Health and NIN. But I write all the guitar and bring it to practice and everyone puts their own flair into it definitely. JB did come up with the riff for shit pipe on bass I'll give him that! And it's definitely our most popular song haha!
Which things do you think a band should sacrifice in order to succeed? Have you ever sacrificed anything in your life for a better future for your band?
This is a great question! I guess it honestly depends on the person and their band and what it means to them. Me personally Razorblade is my life. I live it, sleep it, breathe it and bleed it. I am constantly working on this band pretty much all day every day. I was in the work truck when I opened your email and immediately started answering these questions. Rock N Roll and playing in a band Is really all I've cared about most of my life. I would sacrifice myself for it. It's my passion and drive. I've played in 100 local bands that do shit all and just have fun or go with the flow. I'm not interested in that anymore,I want to work hard and hit the ground running. Razorblade played 50 shows in 2023. Most of my friends bands did not. And that's okay if that's their goal! But it certainly ain't mine. I'm in a band to tour,and record music and get out there. Not to party and piss around. 2024 I want to play 100 shows. I'm a Rock N Roller it's what I do.
Describe your ideal live show as a performance band. Have you already experienced that?
At this point we've played tons of awesome shows I'd say yeah. There's always room for improvement and there's always more shows to be played! As long as your having a good time and ripping that's all that really matters!
The live shot was taken at a skate park in Detroit that our good friends in Sawchuck booked.
What attributes do you think that a new MetalPunk Band should have in order to gain identity and be unique?
Dude just be yourself and get out there! I think people are to worried about fitting in to their little clique or scene that they forget there's a whole world out there. Just cause you sound a certain way doesn't mean you shouldn't reach outside of your circle. Play with everyone make friends with everyone and you'll have tons of different friends all over the place and you'll always have a good time! That's what we do,and it's awesome!
Do you believe that Digital Platforms help the new MetalPunk Bands? Which, do you think, is the ideal way for a band to promote its work?
Again I guess it all about your goals and what you want to do. I have tons of friends/bands that don't have Instagram and they do tons of cool stuff. Me personally,I like Instagram,it's a good way to connect with new people and get your music out to the world. Like Spotify kinda sucks but it's Ike 20 bucks a year and I gets my music out to more people. And my end goal is that everyone ever knows who Razorblade is. But hey that's just me,and I'm a crazy person!
Do you see any differences between the US Metal Market & the EU Metal Market (Labels, Bands, Fans etc)?
Just what I see online really. The Europe seems cool though we would love to come over sometime!
Tell us a few things about the New Underground Metal Scene in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Bands, Fanzines, Webzines, Metal Clubs etc.)
There's a lot going on here. Polish hill which is where we live is a haven for Punks. We have have Gooskies and the Rock Room that are 2 punk bars. We have a community center where we have all ages shows and generator shows in the woods and this is all in a 5 block radious. There a few house spots that always randomly pop up throughout the city. Then we have Shred Shed which is a DIY venue ran and owned by members of Ancient Torture,Negative 13 and Behind Enemy Lines. Preserving underground is in New Ken 30 minutes outside the city and that's a lot of your bigger touring acts and the beatdown HxC scene.
Tons of awesome bands
Illiterates, Bloody Run, Chump, Trainwrecked, Lady Beast, Vicious Blade, No Time, Nasty Nancy, Speed Plans, Negative 13, Ancient Torture, Ironside, Casket Maker, Nullum, Constant Hell and Princess.
There's The Rat Race Zine young punk doing really cool shit,I was the cover of issue #4 and that made me super happy,but yeah very nice kid and very through with the Pittsburgh punk and hardcore scene!
And then there's cruel noise and our ancient future which are 2 sick record labels!
Do you know anything about the Hellenic Metal Scene?
I've never really been a huge black metal guy. But I'll check it for sure! Always fun listening to different and new stuff!
The last 3 years, worldwide in the world, we have faced many dark, strange & new situations in our everyday life (covid, lock-down etc.) Did all of this affect you positively or negatively?
Well I was living in Columbus Ohio when the pandemic hit. I was in a band called Toxic Warlord. We were almost kinda close the point Razorblade is now or at least heading in this direction. The pandemic ruined that. I was also a very bad alcoholic at this point so by the end of 2020 my life had fallen apart and I tried to drink myself to death. I came very close but obviously I'm still here so I did not succeed. But after that I decided I really needed to get my life together or end it for good. So long story short I got with my wife, we actually just had our 2 year wedding anniversary yesterday. I finally stopped drinking and I started Razorblade. I'm almost 2 years sober,well California sober, I still smoke weed I'm not a complete straight edge nut! And I pretty much started writing and planning Razorblade at the very end of 2020. So it changed my life for the better! I'm the happiest I've ever been!
What are your future plans?
Tour and record. There's nothing this band won't do. I'll take it to the ends of earth and time. We've accomplished so much in the short time we've been a band and I can't wait to accomplish so much more. Rock N Roll is my life's work. I might sound crazy but at least I know what I'm about and what I want to do with my life.
Thank you very much for your time & keep up the good work! The closure is yours.
Dude thanks for having us! It means a lot,I think this is super cool and I had a lot of fun doing it! To close,have fun and just get out there and do your thing. We're Razorblade and we play Rock N Roll! Much love! -Slammy
By Steve the Filthy Dog.
Photo credit by Gage at gmv photography