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INTERVIEW: Johannes Van Audenhove & Max Maxheim – Evil Invaders

EVIL INVADERS are no strangers to the festival scene playing all over the world including an appearance at Graspop in 2014. Last year the Belgian thrash maniacs released their most recent effort entitled In For The Kill displaying a scintillating frenzy of old school 80’s thrash metal brilliance. We caught up with frontman Joe and lead guitarist Max after their set at this year’s Heavy Scotland to get the low down on their plans for the future.

How do you think your performance went at Heavy Scotland, did you guys enjoy it?

Joe: Yeah it was cool! It’s our first festival show of the season for us so it was a case of getting back into it but we gave it 100%

..it showed, you were pretty intense!

Joe: [Laughs] Thanks man! It’s the way to go, you can’t just stand there and just play…the energy needs to be there.

In For The Kill has been out for a while now, how do you think it has been received by the fans?

Joe: Pretty well actually, it’s just an EP with 2 new songs but people are really digging it, we released a video for Raising Hell in September and it has a shit load of views, so that’s cool!

Max: The response has been great, we didn’t expect that! It’s fucking amazing!

..I guess that’s the wonders of social media, you can just get everything out there for the world to see!

Max: Exactly!

So the latest EVIL INVADERS album is well under way, how is that going?

Joe: We’re working on it now, it’s almost finished. We hope it’s going to sound awesome! [Laughs]. The mixing and mastering still needs to be done and I have a few vocal lines to finish up and it should be wrapped up!

Do you have a title for the album?

Joe: Feed Me Violence!

Awesome! Is there any concept behind the album?

Joe: Well in general the title says it all, its more violent than anything we’ve ever done before. It’s really something different but in the same style of thrash but you will be able to see some old school death metal influences and Max wrote a lot of the stuff! He has a lot more input on this record. It’s an extension of In For The Kill but on another level.

How have you been approaching the whole recording process? When you go into the studio do you already have a lot of material nailed down and ready to record?

Joe: I wish we could take our time and jam out ideas but we don’t have that kinda money to be spending months and months in the studio. So we always make pre-productions at home just recorded ourselves. Mainly instrumental tracks. Because I’m recording vocals at home I have more time to kinda find my way around it.

Is there anything you approached different on this release?

Joe: The way we recorded is different, we recorded in a different place, the guitars and bass are recorded at home this time. We did it with our sound guy last time and we did it all separate, this time is the first time we are actually working with a mixing/mastering engineer who isn’t someone we know and we are very curious to see how it’s going to sound in the end! We have sent the files over and it’s Daniel Bergstrand who has done work with IN FLAMESDIMMU BORGIR etc so this guy knows what he is doing! I’ve Skyped with him a few times and we were really on the same page. I was unsure at first as he has done a lot of work with a lot of modern bands but when it comes to the sound we need he is down for it. It’s also the first time we aren’t going to be sat there with the guy who is mixing it so its really going to be a surprise for us.

Evil Invaders live @ Heavy Scotland. Photo Credit: Evangeline Parkinson Photography
Evil Invaders live @ Heavy Scotland. Photo Credit: Evangeline Parkinson Photography

..sometimes it is good to have an outside perspective and see what they can bring to the table

Joe: Oh yeah, but it’s hard to let go of it too [Laughs], I always like to be in control of what’s happening! Who knows, it may be 10 times better than what I could come up with and he will have new ideas. There will obviously be communication throughout the process of course because we have our vision but I think he understands what we are looking for, I hope it is what we are looking for!

Max: I’ve got a good feeling about it!

So EVIL INVADERS have got a few festivals planned, is there anything you are particularly looking forward to? Any places you’ve never played before?

Max: Bang Your Head!

Joe: Yeah! In America, we’ve never played the US before.

Max: Milwaukee Spring Bash!

Joe: Killer lineup… There are loads of old school bands going to be there.

Max: OMEN and TYRANT.

Joe: So yeah.. that’ll be very cool!

So Joe, how did you get into the guitar making business?

Joe: I was graduating from secondary school and I was like, I’m not going to university, I’m fed up with all these books and shit! I wanted to make something and do something! I found this school in Belgium where you could actually learn to make acoustic and electric guitars. I immediately called and they said they had quite a large waiting list so I put myself forward for anything, like violins or whatever! I was there about a month just building violins and they said ‘Hey, you can start on guitars too’. I was really lucky with that, I studied for six years! Now I’m making my own business.

Yeah, I saw on your Facebook about that, do you get a lot of interest?

Joe: Yeah, a lot of people are talking about it, I put a Facebook page out for it a few months ago and I’m not really good with social media [Laughs]. I don’t have a personal Facebook so I need to do a bit of groundwork and promote it properly. I’m on the road a lot and obviously we are recording so in the down time I’m going to work on guitars, it’ll develop through time I hope.

So EVIL INVADERS have toured with some great bands like DESTRUCTION, is there any bands you would really like to tour with in the future?

Max: EXODUS!

Joe: Oh yeah, to me they’re like my favourite thrash metal band.

Yeah! I noticed you have been playing Toxic Waltz live a few times recently.

Max: [Laughs] Yeah that has been fun, there a lot of bands we would like to tour with. DEMOLITION HAMMER would be a childhood dream for me! KREATOR would be really cool.

That pretty much wraps it up guys, thanks very much for your time. Is there anything you would like to say to the readers of Distorted Sound?

Max: Don’t eat the yellow snow!

Joe: Check out our new album, it hopefully should be out around September!

Like EVIL INVADERS on Facebook.

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Distorted Sound Issue 24 COVER