INTERVIEWS

Cosmic Rock

(Promo pic by: Michael Leza Pics)

Today we have a new exclusive interview on a beautiful Halloween evening with the very cool Alexis and Brandon from the excellent Texas heavy rock group Doomstress. They filled us in on a little of their background, influences, news and more. Check out this interview and dig it. Happy Halloween..! - G

 

1.Hey guys and howre you today? Great to catch up with you. What’s been going on?

Doomstress Alexis.-Hi there Gideon. Doing well here. We've had a couple weeks off since finishing our last tour and its been nice to enjoy some down time. But it won't last (haha)

 

Brandon: Doing great. Just finished up our last tour of the year. Now gearing up for our last shows of the year. Also been doing some writing, hashing out some song ideas.

 

2.Sounds great. In your early days what were some of your favourite albums or concerts that inspired you?

Doomstress Alexis- All the Iron Maiden records, specifically the 1st (s/t) and Powerslave. DeadHorse concerts back in the early 90s in Houston were always a wild adventure. It really meant a lot to be tour support for them last January in Louisianna. Good people.

 

Brandon: In order to keep this short I'll just say the entire catalogs of Black Sabbath, Solitude Aeturnus and Candlemass were and have always been inspirational to me. 

As for concerts, seeing Mercyful Fate on their “In the Shadows” tour in 1993 and then again on their “Time” tour in 1995 were very inspirational to me in my early years.

 

 

3.Cool yeah for sure. How did you guys form the band?

Doomstress Alexis- Even in the earliest days of Project Armageddon I had planned on doing my own thing at some point either as a side project or full time.  Brandon wasn't sure at 1st until I started playing him some riffs and painting the overall composition for him.  I had always planned on asking him to be part in whatever context he felt comfortable with.  My brother Tom on drums was essential from the start for setting the style in writing and vibe.

 

Brandon: Alexis and I have been jamming in bands for many years. A long break was on the horizon for our old band. And I was getting really burned out with it, so the time was right to start focusing on new things. This is a project that she has been wanting to do for a while and thankfully it was a project she wanted me to be a part of. 

 

4.How would you describe the sound of Doomstress to a new listener?

Doomstress Alexis- a good mix of 70s laden metal, doom, nwobhm, and heavy Texas groove.

 

Brandon: Heavy riffs inspired by metal and hard rock from the late 60's, 70's and 80's with plenty of guitar harmonies and solos. Thunderous bass lines. Cannon like drums. With soaring, clean sung vocals. 

 

5.You guys just made your guitarist Matt a full time member, how did you meet and how does the sound round out with a second guitarist now?

Doomstress Alexis- We'd seen and met Matt playing in some bands we knew in Houston. We had our 2nd tour scheduled for November 2016 and were in need of another guitarist so we hit him up.  Matt really brings a really raw edge to the songs and especially the leads.  Brandon is very refined in his solo writing and I really like the 2 styles getting to rip in a song.

 

Brandon: Matt was playing in a couple of bands around here that Alexis and I were fans of. One was Serpent Sun (a stoner/doom type of band) and the other being Hel-Razor (a D.R.I. styled thrash band). For our second tour we needed a second guitarist, and quick. Matt was able to do the tour and learned our material very quickly. As it turns out not only is Matt a really cool dude that we all get along with, he's an extremely talented guitar player. He's able to bring a bit more of an improvised, off the cuff sound to the band. I'm a bit more mechanical when it comes to playing so the styles blend well. Matt is the guitar player I've always wanted to be in a band with.

 

6.You guys recently got an Elixir string endorsement. Congrats that’s very cool. How did it come about?

Doomstress Alexis.- thanx so much! Yah stoked about that. So it was just keeping a constant engagement with them. We tour a lot which was my plan so naturally we go through a lot of strings. Brandon had really been impressed with Elixir's Optiweb strings and soon Matt was convinced of their quality of tone and dependability. I guess they were watching us busting our asses out on the road so much and were into what we are doing so they contacted me and encouraged us to sign up for their artist endorsement program in April. I think it was 2nd day of our June tour to play Maryland Doom Fest IV when we got the notice we made their artist roster! It's really cool to have the support from a company whose product you trust and believe in.  We aren't just out to collect names, they have to be able to do what we need them to do and both Elixir Strings and Zombie Dust Pickups have delivered.

 

( Elixir endorsement & Live photos  by: Jim Wilkinson Image & Design)

 

7.Awesome. So you’re recording with Wo Fat’s Kent Stump for the first full length. Whats the news and how did you hook up with Kent?

Doomstress Alexis.- We've known Kent and Wo Fat since the earliest Project Armageddon days. Think we met at Dallas Doom Daze fest.  I've sang with them a few times around Texas and Kent joined Project Armageddon on guitar to cover a Pentagram song once. They're all cool cats and Kent and Mike are wonderful people and friends.

We recorded the full length between 2 studios, Supernatural Kvlt Sounds outside Cleveland, OH and Crystal Clear Sound w/Kent in Dallas, TX.  We are currently mixing w/Kent and he'll handle mastering duties as well.

I've talked with Robert @ DHU Records who will be pressing vinyl but we can't really share any other info at this time. I am discussing cover art once again with Goatess Doomwych who has really done some outstanding work for us.

 

8.Very cool. What inspires your songwriting and who handles the songwriting duties?

Doomstress Alexis.- I've come up with the bulk of the songs and ideas thus far but Brandon has had input either in a riff or riff structure and helps me flush out the harmony work I want to use. I let the guys write their solos but I usually give some input as to mood inflection or maybe a pattern.

 

Brandon: I've been dealing with some serious writers block for the past few months. What I have found that helps inspire me to write has been silence with absolutely no distractions. That way I can focus clearly on the music I hear in my head.

 

As for the writing duties, Alexis has been writing the bulk of the riffs and she builds a framework for the song. I'll contribute a riff here and there. I'll workout the harmonies and write my lead stuff. Alexis also writes the lyrics and vocal melodies, although I have been known to contribute a line or 2.

 

9.How did the recent tour go? Any highlights to mention?

Doomstress Alexis- tour was killer! Descendants of Crom Fest in Pittsburgh and Doomed & Stoned Fest in Indianapolis were definite highlights but really every show on that tour rocked.  It was really great to do multiple nights with Sierra from Canada as well as Come to Grief. Both bands crushed it every night.  Also, our bud Spike the Percussionist killed on drum duties!

 

Brandon: It was awesome! Some of the drives were brutal but totally worth it. The Descendants of Crom and Doomed & Stoned fests were the highlights for me. I always enjoy playing festivals. 

 

10.That's great. What thoughts do you guys have on the music underground today?

Doomstress Alexis-Longevity

 

11.How do you feel internet and social media world has affected the indie artists?

Doomstress Alexis-While it gives an easy and broad platform to create and share it also has a lot of noise to contend with. Its a tool but in the end it's how you want to use it.

 

12.What advice would you give a new artist starting out?

Doomstress Alexis.-Take some time to really visualize where you want take it and what that will entail.

 

Brandon: Get out and play shows, but don't overplay your hometown. Don't follow trends. And be cool with everyone. 

 

13.Do you relate to classic rock, old metal or more modern sounds and in what ways?

Doomstress Alexis- I'd say a healthy mix but the modern being mostly current underground bands.

 

Brandon: I would say classic rock and old metal. I just prefer the song writing and it was definitely more organic sounding. I'm not saying all, but a lot of modern recordings are pitch perfect and perfectly timed. So much so that it sounds like it was recorded by a robot, absolutely no soul at all. Which happens when you remove all the human imperfections.

 

 

14.Any last words or news for your fans today?

Doomstress Alexis.-Thanx for your continued support and patience on this new record! We love yall. More tour and fest announcements coming for 2019.

 

Brandon: Thanks to everyone for their support. Look for the full length album to be out in the first half of next year. Cheers! 

 

Sounds very cool guys stay in touch and keep us updated on the news, rock on - G