METHANE (from l-r): Jonas Arnberg (drums), Jimi Masterbo (lead guitar), Tim Scott (vocals/bass), Markus Grundstrom (guitar)
INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN
Taking influence mainly from such metal juggernauts as Slayer, Lamb Of God, and Pantera, Methane are a four-piece comprised of three Swedish musicians and an American vocalist/bassist called Tim Scott.
Having gained underground recognition for a strong sound that is simply unapologetic, the band established themselves even further with their well-received 2017 debut album – entitled ‘The Devil’s Own‘.
Now, with the quartet looking ahead to the release of latest single ‘Thin The Herd‘, a new album, and a headline tour of the US, I spoke to Tim to find out more.
How did the band first form?
Methane formed in 2012, when my brother Dylan moved to Sweden from the US. We had been jamming together for a long time, and we would often talk about starting a band when I would return home to New Jersey from touring, etc.
When he moved over, I was already playing in some Swedish bands (Margrave, Volturyon), but we had a perfect opportunity to start something.
I found out through friends that Jimi, who I had been friends with for a while, and knew was this total shredder of a guitarist, had taken a break from his previous band, so I contacted him to try and coax him into picking up his guitar again, and when me and Dylan explained the sound we wanted to go for, Jimi was on the same wavelength, so I guess you could say it was perfect timing.
Jimi had known Manzone, our original drummer, through playing in local bands, and asked him to sit in while we were songwriting, and he just seemed to fit in.
How did the name Methane come about?
Methane is an explosive gas, and it seemed to best fit our attitude, you know, drink some beer, crank up the guitar, and blow shit up. Also, no other band that we knew of was using the name.
What inspires the band lyrically?
I tend to be inspired mostly by “real-life” themes. Some of our tracks are about life’s tragedies and the mental scars that I carry around, and others are metal songs that are good to have a drink to.
In 2017, you unveiled ‘The Devil’s Own’ – your debut album, which was met with an overwhelmingly positive response. How did you all personally deal with that kind of reaction?
‘Devil’s‘ was a fun album, and I guess it got us some attention on the underground metal scene, but I really haven’t thought about it that way. We get to meet and interact with new people on our social media platforms, and at gigs, so that’s fantastic. My focus is always on what’s next, and where the band goes next.
Shortly, the band will be bringing out a new single – entitled ‘Thin The Herd’. How did the initial idea for it come about?
‘Thin The Herd‘ was one of the first songs that we wrote after ‘The Devil’s Own‘, and lyrically, for me, it’s about the mass hysteria of social media. The track came to me while I was culling my Facebook “friends” list, wiping out the unwanted, degenerate attention whores and cry babies.
You know, for some people in the dark, traverse world of the internet, being unfriended on social media can be a fate worse than death.
And the track will be the first to be taken from your soon-to-be-released second album. How has the recording process been for that?
Unfortunately, it’s been a long drawn-out process, and for a while, we didn’t even have a full-time drummer. When we have been touring, Jusso Laukkanen (Intact), a drummer from Finland, has been with us, but it’s impossible to practice and write songs with him, as he lives so far away.
Therefore, in our quest to emulate Spinal Tap, we got Jonas Arnberg (Fimbultyr), who was helping us record and mix the album in his studio, to fill in on drums, and he just killed it every time. He is sick!
Is there a release date for the album yet?
No, not at the moment. We do have a bunch of songs written and recorded, but all of the details have not been completely ironed out yet.
Also, how will it differ stylistically to ‘The Devil’s Own’?
We have definitely found a sound that crushes anything we have done previously, it’s more brutal, more honest, has more thrash, and also has more of a live feel.
The songs are heavier, which you will be able to hear on ‘Thin The Herd‘, as well as being more aggressive and powerful, however, we haven’t strayed too far from our Southern groove metal style.
The band have toured across much of continental Europe and the US, performed at a number of rock and metal festivals, and have opened for the likes of Warbringer and Nervosa. How were they as experiences?
Wow, yeah, all great experiences! Playing live is what we live for as a band, and getting the opportunity to perform on bigger stages, and scream at larger audiences with killer bands, is a total adrenaline boost for us, especially when you get to meet other musicians like the ladies in Nervosa, who are so cool and down-to-earth. It makes everything worthwhile, and reminds us why we work so hard.
Also, after a couple of live dates in Sweden, Estonia, and Latvia, you’re going to be embarking on a headline US tour, beginning in Hollywood on October 30. I can imagine that’s something everyone in the band is looking forward to.
Absolutely! We’re going to be co-headlining with our new label mates Incarnit, who are also from Sweden, and at this time of year there, it’s getting dark and cold, and it’s beginning to snow, so getting our frozen bones to Southern California will be perfect.
This tour is just going to mangle people, as we will have I Don’t Konform with us in Arizona and New Mexico, and Draghoria in Colorado, so it’s going to be complete and utter thrash metal mayhem!
And lastly, the band have already achieved much over the last few years. Where would you ideally like Methane to be a couple of years from now?
Our goals are to play bigger and better shows, travel to new places, see new cultures, and drink their beer.
‘THIN THE HERD’ – THE NEW SINGLE FROM METHANE – WILL BE RELEASED NEXT FRIDAY VIA BIG BALLS PRODUCTIONS, AND THE BAND WILL ALSO BE ON TOUR THIS AUTUMN, MORE DETAILS OF WHICH CAN BE FOUND BELOW.
FURTHER INFO ON METHANE CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES: