If you haven’t already heard “Societal Sects” from Kinkshamer, which we had the joy of reviewing earlier this month then what are you waiting for?! We had the pleasure of previewing it before its release thanks to vocalist Riley Rowe and then the chance to talk to him about the offering. Here’s what he had to say about the social event of the year…
The themes behind “Societal Sects” have a fair amount of tongue in cheek humour about them. Was it always intended to write something with that dark humour to it?
When we initially created Kinkshamer, the intent was to have every song revolve around sexual and taboo topics. On this EP, we have songs about beastiality, public sex, and other frowned upon activities, so I would say we definitely achieved what we set out to accomplish. But, throughout the writing and recording process, it became quite apparent that creating music and lyrics with these themes is inherently kinda… hilarious. There are certainly moments on the upcoming EP that I listen to and still laugh a bit. It’s a very fine line to walk though. Being in a metal band, you want to hold this serious persona, but when you have samples of moaning grandmas set to blast beats, it’s difficult to be viewed in a serious light. All things considered, I think we realize that Kinkshamer is going to inevitably be funny to some listeners, which is totally fine. However, I’d ideally prefer the band to not be lumped into the “joke band” or “gimmick” territory. If someone enjoys our band because of the humorous elements, I’m all for it. And if someone enjoys our band for the music, I’m all for that too. We truly enjoy making this music and are hopeful others can enjoy it too in any capacity.
The lyrical content is perhaps something that some listeners would associate with more extreme bands musically. How did the marriage come about?
Yeah, I’d agree that our Metalcore/Deathcore sound isn’t typically associated with such sexually explicit lyrics. I suppose when people think of metal bands with a similar lyrical content as us, Cannibal Corpse, Whitechapel, Cattle Decapitation, and all those wild pornogrind groups come to mind, which I would without a doubt consider musically extreme. And while I have much respect and admiration for these bands, neither our lyrical nor musical inspiration is directly from them. For me, lyrical and thematic inspiration comes from a lot of the 90’s industrial acts. The imagery created by Nine Inch Nails’ early era (“Pretty Hate Machine”, “Broken” EP, “The Downward Spiral”) was so provocative. Similarly, Marilyn Manson‘s controversial image and themes around that same were rebellious, yet with a intellectual foundation. To me, the content that these bands churned out are more than just sexually explicit for the sake of shock value, but they have a purpose in that they’re exposing many topics that are unspoken of. So with all that being said, I suppose the “marriage” of our extreme sexually explicit lyrics and Metalcore musical identity just came naturally due to our own personal influences. We’re not looking to replicate the exact same impact that the aforementioned bands created, but rather just write the music that comes natural to us and filter it through our own kinky vision.
Going forward, Kinkshamer are looking to add members to round out the line-up and take the band into the live arena. Which bands do you see yourself playing with?
We are super excited to bring Kinkshamer to the live stage. It would be a dream come true to open up for some of our favourite artists like After the Burial, Born of Osiris, Volumes, or Fallujah. Recently, we’ve been rather obsessed with The Dali Thundering Concept, so if they ever come to the US, that would be amazing. As far as bands to perform that might be a bit more realistic, I could maybe see us alongside bands like The Last Ten Seconds of Life, Loathe, Black Tongue, Make Them Suffer, or Oni. Also, considering we’re a pretty thematic band, I’m hoping to have our live performances rather visual. We already have some props and ideas to make the live show quite memorable. So in that vein, it’d be rad to tour with other visual bands like Nekrogoblikon.
Do you think it was easier to write and agree on the elements that appear on the “Societal Sects” as a duo? Was there ever time when you thought you might be taking it too far or not far enough?
The writing and recording process was actually relatively smooth. Lucas cranked out a bunch of instrumental demos and I began conceptualizing what each track would be in regards to its theme and began on lyrics. We then worked together to spice up each song with samples and extra musical bits before finishing off with vocals. Lucas has his own mini home studio so everything was done in the comforts of our room, so it was pretty stress-free and quick being a duo. Being that the nature of Kinkshamer is overtly sexual and kinky to a potentially controversial amount, it can be concerning if we take things “too far” sometimes. And I think our current society is, in some respects, even more sensitive to these topics than society a decade or two ago. I truly wonder about the backlash if a band like Cannibal Corpse would have faced releasing a track titled “Stripped, Raped and Strangled” in 2019 as opposed to in 1994. I’m definitely comfortable with the material we have on the upcoming EP in regards to controversy, but there may be future material that may push the envelope harder.
How do you see the bands future material? Is there a particular track that nailed what you were looking to achieve?
We actually already have a couple instrumental demos in the works, which may potentially be released as singles throughout this year. And I know it’s such a cliche to over-hype future music, but I can confidently say that these demos are even more complex, diverse, and dynamic than the songs on the EP. Lyrically, I’m hoping to delve even deeper into the sexual topics such as the origins of certain fetishes as well as psychological and sociological aspects. We have a list of kinky topics we’re hoping to cover for future material, so I’m pretty excited to see each theme come to fruition. If I had to choose a specific song on the upcoming EP to reflect the future of the band, I might choose “Climax, Control, Closure.” That song is the longest track on the release and it was basically the result of us mashing three different instrumental demos together into one. Overall, I’m very proud of what we achieved on the upcoming Societal Sects EP, but I’m equally excited about the future of Kinkshamer.
“Societal Sects” from Kinkshamer is out now!