Slavestate Interview


0003771325_10[1]Sean Niland is a big part of Connecticut hardcore and one of its most talented musicians. So when Sean starts a new project, people pay attention. One of his newest bands is Slavestate, a 4-piece death metal band. I had the opportunity to catch up with Sean and talk about the band’s influences, the reaction to the demo, his extensive video game collection, and more.

You have been in bands with a lot of your members before. How did Slavestate form?

I always had the idea and I wanted it executed in a very specific way. It didn’t turn out exactly how I wanted it to but I’m working towards making it that way. We started more or less because Matt wanted to play drums in a band. He was really feeling the influences I had for it and we just click when we play together so it was pretty fluid. Gio is a great friend of ours and was previously in a band with Matt called Submission so we got him in from the get go. We had our first practice at Chris P’s with him on guitar, kicked him out, then put him back in the band because I don’t want to play live guitar/I missed him. Now we’re kinda moving the whole line up around but keeping all the same people. It’s not completely set in stone but there might be a new face next time we decide to play live.

Who/what are the biggest influences on your sound?

To be very general, late 80’s/early 90’s death metal and mid/late 90’s hardcore/metalcore.

Bands: Napalm Death, Gorguts, Neglect, Death, Carcass, Bolt Thrower, Next Step Up, Integ/Ringworm/ICB/Clevocore, a lot of random Euro death metal bands who had one good album and that one Baphomet album

a1463081727_10[1]How was the reaction to Demonstration 2014? Did you expect it?

A lot of my friends were into it and that’s all I really expected or wanted. Not too much from anyone else but we got a few cool compliments on it and I really appreciated that. We were kinda ill prepared for it so we’re gonna go back and redo 3 of the 4. This time I’d like everyone to be on it and for us to be on our A Game.

What are your favorite releases of 2014?

Fuck. I feel like I missed out on so much last year so most of this will be from the beginning of the year. Not even in the realm of heavy music Ryan Adam’s Self-titled record was definitely up there. Anything Mark Kozelek did was cool. That’s heavy on the emotional side lol. NYC Headhunters’ Demo is worth a mention because I liked it enough to order it. I just had to look up lists of what came out this year because I can’t find anything. I should have listened to the new At The Gates (Heard one song, it was real cool and that was as far as I got) and the new Sheer Terror (Saw the songs live and they were sick…but I’m still neglecting it). New Vanity and Give records are on my desktop but I’ve yet to listen to either. I was going to add the newest Carcass and Gorguts records but then I realized those definitely came out last year. Now I feel like the last year of my life was spent living in a void.

You collect a lot of video games, what is the favorite in your collection?

It’s really hard to single out games for me unless I have some nostalgic tie to it. My favorites would probably be my complete Squaresoft PS1 collection and my PS2 Shin Megami Tensei collection. Final Fantasy 7 – 9 and Chrono Cross were my childhood favorites and still are to this day. The whole SMT universe is bizarre but extremely interesting. They really break away from the typical RPG tropes and situations then turn it on it’s head and make it real dark.

You can play a show with any two bands. One living and one dead/broken up. Who would they be?

Honestly, the living bands could be anyone. Most of the time I’m not concerned who we play with but I wouldn’t mind hopping on some bigger metal shows just to dodge the admission prices. It’s also cooler to just play out with newer bands and find cool bands that way.

It’s hard to answer the second part because everyone reunites nowadays and no one stays broken up for too long so I’d have to say Sepultura with Max and Igor still in the band.

When can we expect new music?

Everything’s kind of come to a grinding halt and I can’t really blame anyone except myself. We’re gonna try to move some people around in the line up like I said earlier and hopefully get something out in Spring. That’s being extremely hopeful but I want something new by the end of Summer at least.

Shout outs?


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