Wednesday, 29 February 2012


Here is a feature/interview on the American Black/Thrash/Rock 'n' Roll band MAAX that was originally posted on the Terrorizer magazine website in an edited format. Here is the full unedited feature. Great band , support them!

"I used to come across a lot of great new music via Myspace but in recent times have found myself getting to hear more and more great new bands via sites such as Reverbnation, Youtube and Facebook. This is one such band who have caught my attention via another medium since the Myspace boom imploded on itself and people aswell as bands have been seeking other ways in which to share and promote music to people in the wider world. Someone posted about these guys on their Facebook page so I hit the link provided and was met with what can be best described as black evil heavy metal rock' n roll, bands such as Bewitched(Swe), early Bathory, Motorhead, Venom, later Dark Throne were used to describe this bands sound and that description hit the nail on the head pretty much as they basically do sound like an explosive musical molotov cocktail of said bands.

They have been around for a few years now but I will focus on the awesomely named "Six Pack Witchcraft" EP and the upcoming debut album "Unholy Rock 'n' Roll"  which is due to be dropped like a musical bomb upon the metal scene in the not too distant future via Abyss Records who have also been responsible for unleashing some of the bands other releases. The first song I heard was the title track off the 5 track EP "Six Pack Witchcraft" (how can you possibly go wrong with a song called that?!) released in 2010 and within the first couple of riffs they had me hooked....line and sinker!. Fans of all of the bands I have mentioned in comparison will not be disappointed by what this band delivers musically. I wanted to find out more about what makes this band tick and delve deeper into the world of Maax so fired off some questions and here is the little interview with Kyle Kreider (Guitar). 

Hails! Please give a background history on the band and who does what in the band?

Kyle MaaxMaax formed in the winter of 07' from the debris of another long running metal institution formed in 99'. We consolidated down to a three piece Sky Kingrey/bass/vocals Kyle Kreider/guitars ,and James "Jeff" Brown/drums which became the "Dawnbringer" sessions. The early onset of Maax was a decidedly more Black Metal and "Dawnbringer" was just that with a very cult vibe,we just kind of "went with it" as we were writing the album it was an exciting time but this lineup was short lived as Sky Kingrey had to relocate his life making a regular band rehearsal impossible. Meanwhile "Dawnbringer" was garnering allot of interest internationally and we were on the prowl for new blood to keep the band alive as we are very much a live band. Scouring the local band scene for willing participants was nothing short of difficult until Brett Schlagel rang my cell phone one day and said "hey man,heard your looking for a bass player" followed up by "I got the bass and I got the skill!" (laughs) Most confident thing I've heard out of anyone's mouth who inquired about the position,how could I say no....We knew Brett to be a talented guitar player so we figured he probably knew his way around the bass as well,rocket science is not a factor in our metal anyway! We began writing for the "Six Pack Witchcraft" EP immediately,most of the riffs and structures we had laying around since the Dawnbringer sessions so we had plenty of fuel and passion to rejuvenate this beast. Mean while I was corresponding with a long time friend of the band Tim Green who had jammed in some previous musical endeavors of mine and at this time was still enlisted in the US military and stationed in Iraq for the second or third time.

 He expressed interest in joining a band as a vocalist when he returned home,the planets just kind of aligned and he started rehearsals shortly after his return home. We actually had enough material to make "Six Pack" a full length album but some of the other songs were missing a few ingredients here and there so we just recorded the five you have on the "Six Pack" EP  with this lineup Tim Green/vox,Brett Schlagel/bass,Kyle Kreider/guitar,and Jeff Brown/drums. It turned out to be an excellent choice for Maax,after releasing the EP on Abyss Records we made an executive decision to move Brett into a second guitar position in the band,the guy is a natural guitar player! This brought much to be desired to the writing process and gave new life to the songs left over from the "Six Pack" sessions,now we were able to incorporate lead guitar pieces and layer the rhythm sections for bigger sounding choruses and hooks but we still remain dirty and mean sounding,This gave Brett his opportunity to flourish as the guitar player he is but left a void once again on the bass front. After exhausting my resources in looking for "bass" guitarists I swtched my efforts and asked some guitar players I knew if they would be interested in playing bass for Maax and that turned out to be easier (laughs) and landed Maax the best bass guitarist to date in Jeremy Starkey current bass player and stckler for tightness! Jeremy is also resident guitarist in long standing Indiana death metal institution Necrophagous we knew each other and our bands have gigged together for years so he already knew what Maax was all about. We have written and recorded our follow up full length to the "Six Pack" EP with this current lineup as well.

You have a debut album "Unholy Rock 'n' Roll" coming out soon via Abyss Records, tell the readers about this album in your own words and what they can expect from it?
Kyle Maax- Unholy Rock & Roll is full on Maax,it is what the title implies! The songs are a bit bigger,more hooks,catchy choruses,big lead guitar pieces but the intensity and "Fuck You" attitude remain,the beastial attack is still ever present and I know this word is taboo around here but the record is fun in a piss drunk and slutty kinda way it's the sonic equivalent to a bunch of pissed off bikers having a good rape and pillage! It's fun to play and takes a lot of pressure off in the live setting. It's unapologetic heavy metal!

My first introduction to the band was tracks from your "Six Pack Witchcraft" EP, to me it sounds like equal parts Bewitched, Venom, old Bathory and Motorhead? Is this release still available? What has the overall response been like to it?
Kyle Maax- The response to "Six Pack" has been great for us,we still continue to cover alot of ground with this EP. The EP has had a mixed bag of reviews mostly dogging the production value of it but we kinda wanted the "demo" sounding prduction on it but in hindsight we wish that we could have taken a little more time on the production of "Six Pack" but damn! This EP drives it home and packs one hell of a punch! All the influence mentioned above can be heard on this EP that is fair to say. Six Pack Witchcraft is still available on Abyss Records and now on Sound Pollution (SWE)

Your debut album "Dawnbringer" (which I have yet to hear still) came out in 2009, is this album in the same style as the EP and new album material?
Kyle Maax- "Dawnbringer" is a much colder BM record with a very "aggro" cult vibe to it. We had began to write the thrashier black and roll driven stuff during this time and some of those songs carried over to the next sessions but we wrote "Dawnbringer" with a bit of a different mindset and a definate BM direction here,our new material has obviously evolved into what it is now due to our approach in song writing being a bit different and much more cohesive but our current sound was taking place and being formulated during the "Dawnbringer" sessions, our intentions remain the same.

What bands shape and fuel the sound of Maax? What literally possessed you to play such music?
Kyle Maax- Heavy Metal! It's hard to be band specific or even album specific,I think allot of our metal comes from obvious influences growing up with American heavy metal and thrash and British heavy metal being an obvious component especially now with the big guitar solos and the rock "Motorhead" vibe...punk,BM,DM it's all there in some form or another but bands like Crue,and priest taught us how to write and structure a song properly and bands like Celtic Frost and Venom taught us how to be evil and primitive with a 90's wave of Black Metal influence you get what Maax has become in a nutshell...Maax is unrestrained unapologetic heavy fuckin' metal! 

Do you play out live often? Much planned gig wise for rest of this year?

Kyle Maax- Yes we gig on a regular basis and the metal fest circuit has really taken notice of Maax we have quite a few big dates/festivals here in America planned Central Illinois Metalfest and The Gore Growlers Ball in San Antonio this year to name a few,things happen on a daily basis and the new record should bring more opportunities and hopefully some international opportunities! Our current location in the US fucking sucks as far as gigs are concerned though,it's very cut throat and thats a shame.

I know you have done a Celtic Frost cover, any other covers in your aural artillery? Do you play any live?
Kyle Maax- Hahaha yes we have covered or "Maaxed" everything from Grim Reaper to Billy Idol!

Why the name Maax
Kyle Maax It is pronounced (May-axe). The name Maax will be synonymous with the words Heavy and Metal! It's a mystery,it's an 80's thing (laughs).

Please tell us about your local underground scene, what bands can you recommend to the readers?
Kyle Maax- My pleasure! I recommend Legion and Necrophagous, two of my favorite local Death Metal bands since the early 90's on a broader scale we have The Gates Of Slumber,Demericous,Radiation Sickness for some good Indianapolis based bands.

What other bands are members of Maax involved with? Please tell us about them
Kyle Maax- Everyone is full on Maax except Jeremy Starkey is involved with Necrophagous (mentioned)

OK the last words are yours, thanks for the interview, where can people buy/hear your music?! 

Kyle Maax- Thanks very much for interviewing me and your interest in Maax! You can purchase our music as well as merch @ and we have our first two releases on Itunes however I do not encourage downloading please get the CD or records to listen too,it's a fucking shame no one buys hard copies of shit anymore and metal has always been proud of old school traditions so do yourselves and the bands a favor and buy their shit! Also get your asses out to some shows and support what we do! Maax 2011

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