Ravens Creed are a bulldozing thrash metal assault from England who recently unleashed a new EP called "Nestless And Wild" via Doomentia Records, their heads down no nonsense approach to metal comes with the 100% Fenriz seal of approval as he was won over by their latest recording and then they were made a band of the week by the infamous and influential Dark Throne drummer earlier this year, they also recently played the Fenriz curated Live Evil Festival in London and before that event I was asked by Marek one of the organisers/promoters of Live Evil if I would be interested in doing an interview with Ravens Creed for the Live Evil zine and since I really like the debut Ravens Creed EP and album and also because Jay the drummer is an old friend of mine who actually comes from the same town in North East England as myself (Spennymoor) and Steve Watson the guitarist is also an old friend in the scene I gladly obliged and sent some questions to the Ravens Creed axeman about their latest addition to the band, wild eyed possessed man mountain of a frontman Al Osta (who replaced equally big ex frontman Ben Ward who quit the band some time ago to focus on fronting his main band Orange Goblin) aswell as asking some questions about their appearance at Live Evil and other things and this is what he had to say:-
Hails Steve! Can you give me a quick background history about the band and who currently does what?
Formed 2006, known Frazer for years, met Jay through him, we had a jam and got Ben and Martyn involved, that lasted a while until Martyn left as he had enough his plate with OG, Frazer replaced him, this lasted through a few more EPs and our debut album, shortly after this we reached a mutual decision with Ben that it would be best for all if he stood down as he was having same problems that halted Martyn , for over a year now Ravens Creed are - Al Osta-vocals/Jay Graham-drums/Frazer Craske-bass/Steve Watson-guitar
Some of you are very experienced musicians and have been active in the heavy music scene for many years and have been involved in some well known bands such as Sabbat, Cerebral Fix, Skyclad, Iron Monkey etc...what was your sole intention when you decided to form Ravens Creed? How easy was it to get the first line up together?
To form a band that wasn't stressful ie: no members with egos/hidden agendas, and to do it just for the love of doing it with like-minded gents(!) I asked Ben, sent him a cdr and he said yes, Ben played it to Martyn and he liked it too, so that was that for a while..........
I know you went through a major line up change not so long ago when you lost your original vocalist Ben (who a lot of people know as the frontman of Orange Goblin), that is some BIG vocal boots to fill so how did you end up coming across your new vocalist Al Osta and what made you decide to choose him to replace Ben? Did you have many people audition/ enquire about the vocal position?
Ben is a great frontman and a top chap, so it was a blow of course, but like losing a limb, one has to adapt and maybe adopt a new walking style that was as good (if not better?) than before. Al sent me an email saying "I don't sound like a ten year old girl" and I admired his spunk, he sent me a rough recording of him shouting in his garage to Negative Approach and we knew we had our man.
How have things been working out with Al? I know you recorded a new EP with him "Nestless and Wild" what has the response been like to the first recording without Ben at the mic and also towards Al and his vocals? I must say he seems to fit perfectly into the band and has a strong commanding vocal presence. I guess it must have been kinda daunting having to live up to and fill the presence of such a frontman as Ben Ward.
Everything is coming up roses with Al, his style is harsher to Bens, I think......he lives closer too, which was the major hurdle with Ben, as for ''filling shoes'' and whatnots, anyone who see's us live can judge for themselves.
What bands would you say shape and fuel the sound of Ravens Creed overall?
VENOM/MASTER/OLD SLAYER/DISCHARGE/OLD EXODUS/AGENT STEEL/SACRILEGE (UK) REPULSION/BLACK SABBATH/SCROUNGERS/NEGATIVE APPROACH/HELLHAMMER/CELTIC FROST
Describe Ravens Creed in 5 words!
THE CLUNKING FIST OF METAL
Chuffed of course, I have been under Darkthrones' filthy spell since inception, well maybe not so much the first lp, it's okay of course, but didn't stick a pitchfork in me like the others did.
You are also playing this years Live Evil festival, what are your thoughts about that? What can people expect from a Ravens Creed live show?
Honoured to be playing such a respected festival to be honest, cosy venue with some of the greatest bands in the world playing loud? 10/10 YOUTH!, you can expect thirty minutes of downtuned cossack thrash from us.
Any fellow Fenriz approved bands that you are really looking forward to seeing at Live Evil in particular?
Jaguar, never thought I would see them, proper old school Neat Records action, Aura Noir too, but I think they are on a different day? looking forward to seeing all the bands (which is a first for me!)
What are your plans for rest of 2011 and into 2012, do you have much new material what can people expect from the next recording, I take it you will be aiming for another full length?
Recording the second album at TENKO studios, it's called The Power and will be out early next year on Doomentia records.
Any other British bands you would recommend to Fenriz to check out and maybes discover a new band of the week?!
I got no idea! Al would tell you better
Thanks for taking the time out to answer this interview. last words are yours...whats your final words to those who will be attending live evil this year?
Cheers Kat, and our message to Live Evil punters is-HEADS DOWN SEE YOU AT THE END