Posted on by Oran

Featuring a fresh, heavy sound that is dripping with innovation and progressive leaps, Cork’s Arjuna’s Eye began to get tongues wagging with their sophomore album ‘Amalgam’, which saw it’s one-year anniversary this past weekend.

Arjuna’s Eye sees their sophomore album ‘Amalgam’, celebrate it’s one year anniversary this past weekend. Bassist Aaron Frahill recalls the making of the album and the latest on the bands’ eagerly-awaited follow-up.

OD – This past weekend marked the first anniversary for ‘Amalgam’, when you look back on the writing and recording of the album are there any moments that stick out from others?

AARON – There are tons of memories from the recording process, too many to draw from, but if I had to narrow it down personally, I would say in ‘Trial of the Grasses‘ [listen below] there is a short breakdown after a good heavy bit that lasts all of about two seconds where I wanted to have a ‘chuggy‘ dropped-low-C, but the low-C available just wasn’t cutting it – so Sean [vocals] put both hands on the tuning peg of my low C and as I struck the string he spun around the guitar head quickly dropping it to an EVEN lower C, which gave the bass a gnarly extra heavy drop! NICE!

And even though I wasn’t there for this one, it’s one of the best, “Kronos“. Sean and Conor [guitars] had been experimenting with all sorts of available sounds.

One of which was with setting up mics for this huge office storage locker. They were CLANGING away on it with metronomes in their ears on this thing to get this raw echoey metal sound in order to mimic blacksmiths working in a forge…which was intended to be in the centre of a volcano so yeah, BADASS.

OD – How would you say the band’s profile has grown since the album’s release?

AARON – Honestly, I was blown away with support from fans new and old. The bands’ profile has increased enormously, especially since receiving massive help from our management.

We’ve had messages from around the world from all sorts of radio/podcast stations telling us how they love what we’re doing. It really warms the heart and drives us on to present bigger and better things. With bookings for shows beginning to come through the door for the likes of the UK, we couldn’t be more excited to spread the word even farther. Onward and upward for as long as is possible!!

OD – Looking back now, what are your favourite tracks from the album and what do you enjoy performing live the most?

AARON – Though it’s hard for me to pick favourites, I will say that some of my favourites to listen to are ‘Echolocation‘, ‘Hibernia’ and ‘Beastmode’.

My favourites to perform live, on the other hand, are ‘Romulus and Remus‘, ‘Cortexiphan‘ and ‘Kronos‘. When playing live, I love the punchy ones that I can settle into and headbang. I don’t have that luxury with all the songs, as there are trickier ones that require more attention in order to do them justice!

OD – The comparison between the first album [‘The Invisible Landscape‘, 2014] and ‘Amalgam’ is very noticeable, as it should be with every new album. How are things coming on now with new material?

AARON – Of course, a difference between each album is to be expected, but in the case of Arjuna’s Eye, it differs in the way that the first album was recorded solely by Conor (the creator of the whole thing), the second, being Conor, Sean and myself.

As you mentioned there’s a huge difference between Amalgam and ‘The Invisible Landscape’. Now with the new material, there are of course two new members to add to our recording process, Cillian [guitars] and Rory [drums].

It seems our only problem at the moment is how to narrow down the abundance of input and new material available to us. I’m delighted to say we are well underway with recording the new album and it’s already sounding great! We cant wait to show people what’s in store.


OD – Can you give us any song titles or insight into the sound of the new material?

AARON – Well! Let me see, at the stage of recording we’re at right now, things such as song titles tend to be fairly interchangeable and not too finalized, but, one title I’d imagine is safe enough to reveal is “Fire Thief“.

Plenty of recognizable tone and grit that has in one way or another become our sound. In saying that, there is a brand new element to the whole lot. It’s still surprising us that all that we do is un-mistakably “Arjuna’s Eye“.

OD – Will you be looking at releasing a new album or have you considered the option of releasing a series of EP’s instead as some other bands are choosing to do?

AARON – Put it this way, as a band we have at least an album’s worth of music to get through. In today’s “gimmie now” society we would be totally open to the idea of a series of EP’s, or one banger of an album.

To be honest, if we had the ability to release top-quality tracks one by one, as we complete them we would, but the logistics of something like that don’t make sense. Whatever is most achievable is what we’ll be aiming for!

OD – We saw singles ‘Trail of the Grasses’ and ‘Cortexiphan’ get some great exposure outside of Ireland. This must be a humbling feeling to know that your music is reaching audiences all over the world?

AARON – As I mentioned earlier, it blows my mind that people on most continents have heard our music! The metal community seems to have such an endless reach, people who we have never met before, and immediate family are attending the same gig. Any exposure outside of ourselves is more than we ever planned for. We just sat down as three guys and wanted to record some music that we’d like to hear.

OD – Will there be any more singles released before the end of the year?

AARON – Yes, that’s the plan. We hope to release a third music video off ‘Amalgam’ soon. I cant wait to see the finished product myself. This will be our third time working with director Brian O’Glanby so we know he’s going to deliver something great.

OD – In a perfect world, when can we expect to see some new music released?

AARON – It’s early days yet in the recording process and it’s always hard to estimate how long the entire thing will take. In a perfect world, I would say spring 2021, as we all know however things never quite seem to go to plan- so allowances must be made for the unknown. Not to worry, plenty of time before the summer.

OD – Now that you’re signed to a UK booking agency [Lost Island Entertainment], does this mean that as soon as the live industry can make a safe return, Arjuna’s Eye will be performing over in the UK on a regular basis?

AARON – Oh for sure! We’ve already been held back by this whole situation long enough. You can be guaranteed that as soon as it’s possible we will be over to the UK on the regular. We cant wait to get out there gigging and getting our music heard.

OD -Can you give us your opinion on the current state of the Irish music industry, specifically looking at Heavy music and what you like to see change with reference to the genre getting more support/exposure?

AARON – The talent in the Irish Metal scene, in so many sub-genres, is phenomenal and growing all the time. I’m not sure when it happened, but bands’ seem to take it upon themselves to up the anté with regard to the quality of the music written and a higher quality of recording for sure. And everyone seems to have elevated to a higher level overall.

However, most, if not all, of this was achieved from self-funding, which makes it all the more respectable to see other bands in the same boat as ourselves. It shows real devotion to the music. Unfortunately, there is little to no help or interest in the Irish Metal scene on a large scale from the big-wigs, which makes it next to impossible for Irish Metal to reach new ears abroad, or even at home for that matter.

OD –  Finally, are there any Irish metal bands you’d like to mention that might inspire people to check out/discover?

AARON – Wow, that’s tough to answer. If you’re a fan of metal as a whole there are too many to mention, but I suppose on a personal level a couple worth mentioning are zhOra, Words That Burn, and the Enigma Division (I just found them not so long ago, excellent stuff altogether).

Those three I mentioned will give you a  brief look into the quality of music coming out of Ireland at the moment. It makes think how many bands are still out there across the country slugging away in garages and the likes, that have great music, but no way to get it recorded well and heard far and wide. It gives a man hope, though. Exciting times ahead and we can’t wait for them!

Arjuna’s Eye are currently writing for the follow-up to ‘Amalgam‘ with intentions of new material being released in the first quarter of 2021. Keep up with the guys on their socials [Facebook, Instagram]

Amalgam‘ is out NOW on all good streaming sites.

Oran O’Beirne 2020