Posted on by Oran

Under ‘normal’ circumstances, 2020 would have been a pinnacle year for rising Irish metal export, Dead Label. We caught up with drummer, Clare Percival for the latest news on that all-important follow-up album to 2016’s ‘Throne of Bones’. 

Photo -Down The Barrel Photography 2020

With scheduled performances locked in for Download, Ressurection Fest, Sunstroke, Rockstadt Extreme Fest, Headbangers Holiday and much more, the four-piece were set to win over legions of fans across Europe and the UK this Summer but like every other band on the planet, their plans abruptly flatlined; thanks to the Coronavirus.

Never ones to shy away from adversity, let alone a global pandemic, Dead Label have been busier than ever writing new material for their new album and from what we can gather, the LP will not only elevate them to a level that any contemporary Irish metal band has done so before but will also make a significant impact within the global metal community.

OD – 2020 has started off with a bit of a lull, however, this doesn’t stop the process of writing new music. Have you guys been using the time productively?

CLAIRE – We most certainly have. Obviously we would prefer if the world was safe again but having this time to focus on writing an improving our playing has been great.

We have a way that we can record with each other from our own homes so we are working on demos by sending each other music and adding to it. We would prefer to get in a room and jam but at least we can still make music at this time.

When we can go back to full rehearsals, we have an endless amount of material to work on. It is going to be a difficult process to decide what we put on the next album;  right now we have more new music than ever before.

Down The Barrel Photography © 2020

OD – Can you tell us about any possible new music that you have been working on such as song titles, general vibe etc?

CLAIRE – A lot of our song titles have working titles at the moment, I can tell you that my personal favourite has a working title of Phatboi! It’s a real Dead Label song, it ticks all the boxes for me. There are about twenty tracks that have been fully demoed and a handful more that are not complete songs but have the guts of the, done. Not to mention all the riffs the two boys have that will be turned into songs also.

OD – With the Summer Festival circuit pretty much shut down, can we expect an even more vigorous touring schedule for 2021?

CLAIRE – Oh God our Summer! We really had a  fantastic Summer ahead of us this year, we weren’t even announced for some really amazing festivals we were booked for before they got cancelled.

So that hurt a lot. But with that being said, we are going to play every gig that will have us from the minute this is all over. I do fear it will take a while for gigs to be safe but I have every confidence that metalheads above most will abide by the rules to get their live music back.

I know I would take any measure necessary if it meant gigs would be back sooner rather than later. We also had a tonne of merch bought and ready for all the shows but people have been supporting us like crazy online (Dead Label merch store) and our metal community out there have been amazing.

OD – Besides working on new music, what have you been doing to pass the time in isolation?

CLAIRE – For me personally, I have been walking and exercising a lot more and spending time with my family. Lots of drum practise and trying to learn things or focus on lots of stuff I have neglected in the past.

I also have had time to read more which is great, I re-read Max Caveleras (Sepultura/Soulfly) book ‘My Bloody Roots‘ which I love and Rex Brown’s (Pantera) ‘Official Truth, 101 Proof: The Inside Story of Pantera‘ which is also a really great read. Oh and I just started Brian Slagel‘s book ‘For The Sake of Heaviness: The History of Metal Blade Record’s’ too which is a nice insight into the industry also, and of course Harry Potter [Laughing]

OD – Because of Covid-19, do you think that people will have more appreciation for live music and especially for their local scene, venues etc?

CLAIRE – 100%!!! I think that once it comes back, live music and music, in general, is going to surge. I think people might start going out to local gigs more too. They won’t just assume it’s always going to be there anymore.

I think the fire and passion that will be felt when everyone is back together in a field with no distance necessary will be a very special day. I also think the quality of the music will improve greatly too.

All our favourite bands are at home right now, with time to reflect and think and explore. From my understanding a lot of bands once they “make it” are touring and recording non-stop. They now have time to reconnect with why they started, and really experiment with things. I think the aftermath of this time will be very special for music indeed.

OD – What was your favourite album of 2019?

CLAIRE – My favourite album of 2019 was Rammstein self-titled. They just grabbed me with that one. I was always a fan, liked the obvious songs but that album gripped me.

For more information on Dead Label please visit this link.

Oran O’Beirne

www.overdrive.ie 2020