HILLBILLY REVENGE

I can’t help liking this band’s name. There is something to HILLBILLY REVENGE that puts a smile on my face. ©2015 Anders Ekdahl

As I am not at all familiar with your band perhaps you could introduce it?
-We are four guys from a small town in Greece and we all enjoy old school (and the decent modern stuff) punk and metal. When we first started we just wanted to play some crossover/thrash covers for fun. We didn’t have any plans for shows or releases, but it all kinda worked when we started writing our own material and we released the split with Human Slaughter and played a bunch of live shows.

How hard was it for you guys to pick a name? What had that name have to have to fit your music?
-Finding a name is always the hardest part! That wasn’t the case with us though, because we had a deadline to pick a name. We found out we were playing our first gig the day before the posters were getting printed, so we had to give them our name to print. We had the idea for this name for some time so we just went with it. I don’t know if it fits our music, but it fits our style. Small town hillbillies, trying to get their local thrash scene moving!

What band(s) was it that turned you on to the kind of metal you play? What inspires you today?
-Our influences vary a lot between members but when it comes to our influences as a band, I’d say old school thrash and hardcore punk mixed with the whole “thrash revival” thing. Tankard, Exodus, Anthrax and the Bay Area scene were definitely a big influence for us, just to name a few, but I think a huge influence for us was Dr. Living Dead’s self-titled LP. Our personal taste which varies from hip hop and drum & bass to grindcore is what inspires us. We want to mix all that stuff with our music to get this “signature sound”. After all, we just want to make good music, that we enjoy playing and listening to.

What is the advantages/disadvantages of digital?
-Well, of course digital is easier and cheaper (even free) to distribute and it gives everyone a chance to promote and sell their music. It’s always gonna sound worse than analogue and there’s no debate about that. To me, the biggest disadvantage of digital is that when people listen to music on their PC, they do not focus on what they are listening to. Music becomes a disposable background for whatever game/social media/news site they decide to waste their time on.

Is digital killing the album format? Is there anything good with releasing single tracks only?
-I don’t think the album format is dying. Mainstream genres had a huge drop on physical format sales, but digital sales are going up. On the other hand, vinyl is making a comeback in the underground scene and I think this is awesome. What’s dying is the music industry and the studio world. This definitely affects the quality of music that’s being put out there nowadays. About single tracks, I could never say no to a nice 7″ single release with a picture vinyl and a poster. If we’re talking about digital releases, I don’t think it really makes sense, especially in punk/metal genres, unless of course it’s a promo or teaser release.

What part does art work and lay out play when you release songs digitally?
-If the artwork and lay out fit and complement the music on an album or a track, then it needs to be provided on every format. I think most bands provide that stuff on digital releases so that people feel like they’re getting their money’s worth. It makes the digital release feel like an actual album in a way.

Is it a whole different way to promote a digital track than it is promoting a cd? Or do you go about doing promotion the same way?
-I guess you promote digital stuff digitally and physical stuff physically… People see a link for your digital release on the internet and they’re a couple of clicks away from getting it. When it comes to a cd/vinyl it’s easier to promote and sell at live shows. But again, since everything is done through the internet today and you can have everything mailed to your door, you can still promote a cd/vinyl on the internet. But no, I’d never say “Go to our bandcamp page, click buy now, and get our latest track and band photos at excellent digital quality for 50 cents” at a live show.

Do you feel like you are a part of a scene, locally, nationally and internationally?
-I guess we are part of the greek underground scene, but that’s about it. We never really liked “scenes”. We just like good music. That’s another thing our name is about. We’re getting our revenge from all these scenes and cliques that put labels to people, music and cultures. When it comes to metal and punk, we love the music and hate the people.

How much of a touring band are you? Is touring/gigging still a great way of spreading the word of the band?
-This question brings tears to my eyes every time… We did play a lot of gigs and that’s what we do best, but we can’t do it that often any more. I live in the UK at the moment, one of our guitarists is studying far from home and we’re a bit scattered across the globe. We only play a few shows now whenever we get the chance, but we’ll definitely figure out a way to fix that in the future! And yes, touring and gigging are by far the best ways to spread the word about your band, meet new bands and people you might work with some day and show people that came to see you a good time. Facebook spamming is not fun for anyone, so find some money, take a risk and play some shows!

What will the future bring?
-Definitely a new release that we hope will be in vinyl format, maybe a music clip, which was something we always wanted to do for shits and giggles and I hope some awesome and fun live shows. We learned a lot of stuff while making this EP/split and now is our chance to improve and write some new killer tunes and get our revenge! Cheers!

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