Interview: Tom Cronin from Road Mutant talks “Back To The Green Zone”!

In 2018 we brought you some exclusive interviews from members some of the UK’s most talented Underground Metal bands. Harbinger, Reclaimer, I, The Mapmaker, Dead Hands and of course Sunfall! Seeing as today marks the birthday of long time collaborator and fellow Metal Head Gecko, we decided to go and talk to Tom Cronin from one of his favourite upcoming Underground Metal bands Road Mutant for the first exclusive interview of 2019! Happy Birthday dude!

Crossover Thrash is the sound of the Road Mutant! Was it a deliberate thing to create a band in that genre or did it come about naturally?

I think it’s a bit of both to be honest. Charlie (vocals) approached me in Feb last year, with the idea of doing a full on thrash band, but I think as our roots are so firmly placed in hardcore, that attitude and way of working just starts to seep into the music in a natural way. There’s a lot of death metal influence in there as well, which wasn’t necessarily a conscious decision either – we’re just a product of everything we listen to. I don’t wanna say we’re just ‘metal nerds’ but then again – I can’t really put it a better way than that.

How much of the release of your live EP “Live From The Red Zone” was pre-planned with David Tan and how much of it was down to popular demand?

It wasn’t pre-planned at all actually. David sent me the footage and the audio from Upsurge and I just thought it sounded mad. I’m a big fan of them bootleg records you can find of all the old thrash and death bands, so it seemed like a natural thing to do.

The storytelling aspect of the lyrics on “Back To The Green Zone” are really good fun! How did you come up with the theme and concept for the band?

I can’t speak for Charlie too much here, but he’s massively into films – so I think he took a lot of influence from the likes of John Carpenter, David Cronenberg and George Miller etc who have this great ability to build a world with these characters living in them. Saying that, as goofy as it might come across sometimes, we don’t really wanna get lumped in with them comic book or ‘pizza thrash’ bands – Bands like that are more of a ‘parody’ of what thrash really is and what it used to be.

How did you manage to get the talents that are Sam Thredder and Arthur Rizk on board to Record, Mix and Master your debut release? How did you find working with them?

Sam is such an approachable guy, and he’d recorded so many of the top UKHC releases from mid 00’s onwards (eg Dead Swans, Hang the Bastard, More Than Life and a tonne more) – plus he’s recently been doing a lot of stoner and doom bands, and can really capture raw energy without it sounding manufactured at all. Was great working with him as he’s such a music nerd and knew exactly what we were after. With Arthur, I think it was literally a stroke of luck. I messaged him on Instagram asking him if he’d be up for it as he’s worked on pretty much all my favourite releases of the last 2-3 years and he just happened to have some downtime before he was going back into the studio to work on another project. He absolutely nailed what we wanted first time round as well, so there’s not much more to say.

What will 2019 bring for Road Mutant? Do you have any plans for summer festival shows and one-dayer appearances?

We’ve got some shows lined up in London, Bristol and Norwich at the moment and hopefully we’ll do a weekender or tour with Inhuman Nature or something. Oh and we’re playing Downsurge Fest with some incredible bands!  We’re currently working on another release which we’ll put out before the end of the year.

If you haven’t… “Back To The Green Zone” by Road Mutant is out now available over at bandcamp!
Go To The Gig captured “March of the Road Mutant” live at The Steam Packet in Norwich on 19th October 2018…

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