Exclusive Interview: Idle Ruin talk self titled EP!

“All our gigs were cancelled, tours were halted and nobody could play anywhere. At around the same time, some of the bands I was playing in had either broken up or fizzled out.” Liam decided to use the lockdown time constructively and began his own project, which is also what inspired the name “Idle Ruin”. ~ Liam Anthony

Blending Death Metal and Blackened Thrash, Liam Anthony (Drums & Lead Vocals), Kaleb Doherty (Guitar & Vocals) and Josh Dawson (Bass & Vocals) form a deadly trident in  Idle Ruin, looking to deliver aggressive and hard-hitting death metal that bangs heads and raises beer glasses. What more could you ask for in the year of the Great Plague? Their self titled EP is fresh out and available over at bandcamp for those that want to partake in those rituals. We spoke to Liam Anthony about the project and here’s what the great man had to say…

How have you found the reaction to Idle Ruin so far? The reaction to our first single “The Devil’s Trade” has been really great! People are enjoying it. We’ve had a lot of airplay from some of the metal radio shows in Australia, and had quite a lot of pre-sales for the EP already which is pretty cool. We also have a sold-out New Year’s Eve show coming up; as restrictions are easing in our city, fifty more tickets were made available which also sold out in two days. It’s really good to know that our local community is eager and hungry for live music again after so long.”

Is it fair to say that Idle Ruin started as a Liam Anthony solo project? How far along in the writing process had the self titled release gotten before bassist Josh Dawson and guitarist Kaleb Doherty got on board with the project and how did the songs on the EP evolve once they did? You could probably call it that and a lot of people may call it that. If I knew how to properly play all the instruments on the recording, then maybe I would! I love writing music as much as I enjoy playing it, so while I was playing in bands I wrote a few songs on the side which ultimately became Idle Ruin. Once those bands fell apart prior to the pandemic lockdown, I figured I’d bring those songs out and start something for myself. The songs had already been written by the time I asked Kaleb and Josh if they wanted to jump on board, and their presence really improved the songs. Literally. For example, when I gave Kaleb the songs to learn he took one look at my amateur guitar tabbing skills, rolled his eyes and helped re-write the parts so he could physically play them (I’m only a drummer after all)! Despite that, the guys really added their own flair to the songs; Josh’s plays his bass like an extra guitar, throwing in a few bass lead parts here and there. It was Kaleb’s decision to tune the songs down from what I’d tabbed (which made them a lot more aggression), and I pretty much gave him free reign on the solos. I figured I owed him that much after making him redo my tabs.”

As you all knew each other beforehand did that make the recording process easier than having to get someone fresh on board and sell them the vision for the project? Absolutely. We had known each other around the scene for years, so there was already that sense of trust between us and we definitely knew how to work with each other. The funny thing is that Brisbane’s music scene is very incestuous. Everyone knows each other and has probably played in a band or two with each another at some stage (or has a guitarist who once worked with the bassist of an older band with the current drummer of your band, who’s in ten bands, etc). Brisbane is an oversized country town at the end of the day.”

Obviously you’ve all been involved in a wealth of bands previously (Malakyte, Bone Marrow, Spektre, Decapitated Mum, When Death Replaces Life, Powerful Owl) so how did those bands influence Idle Ruin? When it comes to playing live, do you see yourselves playing any songs from your time in those bands or is Idle Ruin a completely separate beast? Idle Ruin is a completely separate beast, and some of those bands you mentioned were our former bands or groups that we just did session work for. Our previous bands obviously did help shape us as musicians (like any musician), but it’s highly unlikely we’ll include material from them into an Idle Ruin set. When Death Replaces Life is Kaleb’s own studio project which he’s still doing (they released an EP last year), and aside from Idle Ruin I’m currently drumming for death metallers Bone Marrow who are working on new material. Josh and Kaleb have another project of their own in the works too (or two, I think). See what I meant earlier?!”

There is a wealth of Australian talent in the Metal scene at the moment; which bands would you recommend to us from your neck of the woods? There’s definitely a wealth of talent pouring out right now. We’ve just had new albums released from Harlott and In Malice’s Wake, but I also recommend checking out the new releases from Shatter Brain and LiveWire (aka Thrash Gordon); those bands keep putting awesome material out. Great guys, too. Bastardizer are a fun blackened thrash band from Sydney who just did a split EP with the band Wraith titled “Speed Armageddon”. There’s also a recent death metal band from Melbourne I’ve started getting into called Evoker who just released another EP. From my hometown Brisbane, I recommend checking out thrash band Odius who are pretty amazing live and also have a new release coming out soon.”

In the absence of a live show, at Metal Noise HQ, it’s all about the Pizza, Beer and Headbanging when it comes to chilling out; how do Idle Ruin let off some steam? Kaleb’s all about video games, and Josh enjoys going out to shows and collecting vinyls. As for me, other than going out to shows there’s a retro video game bar down the road where I’ll go smash out some Time Crisis.”

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