Was it hard to come up with a name? What does the name mean to you? How important is it to have the right name?
-The band name wasn’t too hard to come up with. It comes from the legacy of vocalist Kyle Mortiss’ previous band “Malicious Intent” combined with the fact that we are a new incarnation with new music, new members, new feel etc and we mean business. It was a toss up between Malicious Inc and the name that Kyle was going under for his solo project ‘Of The Wolf’. Ultimately because of the legacy, demand for the old to return and what we were going for we settled on Malicious Inc.
Who would say have laid the foundation for the kind of sound you have? Who are your heroes musically and what have they meant to you personally and to the sound of your band?
-I think bands like Slipknot and KoRn would be at the top of that list. The ‘Godfathers of Nu Metal’ and all that. I think bands like Machine Head, Lamb Of God and Pantera have had a big impact on that sound as well. We all have different heroes and inspirations from varying areas of the musical world but the common denominators are the Nu Metal greats and bands listed above. For me personally (Morgan Weeds – Lead Guitar) my real heroes are people like Aaron Lewis from Staind and Scooter Ward from Cold because of their relatable and honest lyrical content, but as a guitarist other heroes would include players like Ritchie Blackmore, Andy Timmons and John Petrucci for their emotive expression and technical abilities.
When you play slow do you have to think differently arranging the music than if you play faster and vice versa?
-I wouldn’t say so. I think music is a universal language of feeling and the less you have to think about it, the more natural it is. Everyone in the band is an experienced and talented musician as well as player of their individual instrument and you just get a feeling for what’s right to play and what’s going to fit to enhance the sound and help create the mood. On a technical level, I mean sure, you have to concentrate when you practice to improve your skills especially around speed and accuracy but by the time it hits the stage or the studio, it’s so well defined it comes naturally meaning you can just get lost in bringing out the emotion and message in the music.
Will your music work in a live environment? What kind of stage environment would best suit your music; a big stage or a small club?
-It seems to work based on the few gigs we’ve played since formation and the reception we’ve received from those shows. The shows we have played have been smaller venues and clubs so far, but between the sound, our stage presence, the way Kyle Mortiss (Vocals) can work a crowd and the overall performance, stick us on a stage in front of 2 people or 200,000, you’re not gonna be disappointed.
It is very hard to be 100% satisfied. Everybody seems to be disappointed with something they have released. Is there something that you in hindsight would have done differently on this your latest recording?
-The ‘Red Flag’ EP is one of those things that I think how it turned out was exactly how we wanted it. We wanted a raw, brutal and honest introduction into our sound and the kind of people we are, what makes us tick and how we’re more than happy to challenge any kind of topic. It did all of those things. There was literally ‘Blood, Sweat and Tears’, without sounding like to much of a cliché. There may be some minor things from a production point of view as our musicianship and skills have progressed if we went through it with a fine tooth comb, but as it stands it’s definitely come out how we wanted it to at the time and that’s what matters.
Promotion can be a bitch. Even today with all different platforms it can be hard to reach out to all those that might be interested in your music? What alleys have you used to get people familiarized with your band?
-We’ve been lucky with the guys at Sliptrick Records and their network and efforts. I’ve networked online through social media a lot as well with help from some of the guys to lay foundations with some great online outlets across the world who continue to plug our stuff and anticipate new releases. Social Media really does help if you know how to use it and where to throw your stuff.
To me art work can be the difference between bust or success. What to you is a great front cover? What should a cover have to make it great?
-Artwork is subjective. One person might think a cover is great while someone else might not. I think as long as it depicts and embodies what the musical content of the record it’s accompanying is trying to say and that the band are happy and feel it does that, then that’s all that matters. It’s got to help deliver the overall message of the record, like a visual representation of the music you’re about to hear.
Do you feel that you are part of a national scene? Is a local/national scene important for the development of new bands?
-I guess so, I mean our music is listened to all over the UK as well as a lot of cool places across the world, so I guess that counts?
The local and national scenes are definitely important to any upcoming band to help establish themselves. They provide a platform to perform and to network. As long as people aren’t excluding people for petty personal bullshit and look after eachother then it’s all great. Some scenes can be rather particular and there’s just no time for that rubbish, get over yourselves. We haven’t got any time for unhealthy competition or petty jealousy.
It could just be me but I got the feeling that the live scene is not what it used to be. Could be that more and more people use the net to discover bands instead of going out and supporting new bands live. What is you experience with the live scene?
-The live scene has its pros and cons. The local scenes work tirelessly to encourage, support and promote new local talent and try to network further afield, but there is and always has been this weird thing that a “local” or “unsigned band” doesn’t have what the “major” bands have so people don’t go and see them or aren’t interested because they aren’t “big”. It’s sad because a lot of the smaller bands starting out are better than a lot of these big bands still clinging to their careers. People forget everyone’s gotta start somewhere… Even the biggest bands and artists in the world started out on a small stage playing empty shows to only family and friends. Too
many people cry out for new music and that everything’s too stale yet don’t really make the effort to go and find it, they wait for a major label to drop the next 15 seconds of fame into their laps. They also happily settle for the same recycled festival line ups every year…
The internet definitely has a part to play, but even then, you post your band in a group asking for new bands, then someone posts a major band and the new band gets ignored while everyone discusses said major band on a different feed. It’s a definite battle, but you gotta do it and keep pushing and just be grateful to all the wicked people out there supporting and building up the underground. There are people out there like that and they’re the real heroes.
What does the future hold?
-We’re waiting on a lyric video for ‘Wintered Trees’ from the guys at the label. We were supposed to hit the studio at the start of April to record the singles we’ve selected for our yet to be recorded Debut Album but due to the pandemic that had to be put on hold. I guess until this situation is over we’re not too sure how things are going to progress, but we’re plugging away, writing and doing all we can to promote our stuff. I guess all we can say is ‘Watch This Space’ for now.
Thanks for taking the time to interview us, we really appreciate it.