Cave Bastard’s debut album The Bleak Shall Devour the Earth contains the kind of brutal, well-rounded, and varied death metal that’s so incredibly satisfying to listen to. Drawing in elements from grindcore, sludge, hardcore, black metal, and doom, and using them to create a crushingly effective album of extreme metal, this has definitely been one of the highlights of the year so far for me.
Find out more below…
Introduce us to Cave Bastard and tell us how you formed
Troy: The band was formed in May of 2014 by myself and Nick Pardon (guitar) shortly followed by guitarist Chase Ferguson, vocalist Steve Pearce, and drummer Sal Gallegos. Sal left the band in fall of 2015 and our long time friend Steven Reed took over drum duties, and we proceeded to work on writing for our split with Blk Ops and for our full-length record.
What are your influences?
Troy: Our influences are all over the place , from old school extreme metal like Gorguts, Bolt Thrower, Death, Carcass, Dismember, Enslaved to more modern extreme metal like Spawn of Possession, Zhrine, Visigoth, Lago, Ruin, Cognizant.
Name five things you’ve listened to recently that you’d recommend
Steve: Asphyx (Incoming Death), Immolation (Atonement).
Troy: Gorguts (Pleiades’ Dust), Zhrine (Unortheta).
Chase: Bohren and Der Club of Gore – all of it.
Tell us a bit about The Bleak Shall Devour the Earth
Steve: Every song has it’s own story, yet they are all linked to the overall theme of the Cave Bastard: The bringer of chaos, death, and torment brought on by chaos, death, and torment.
How were the songs written? As the album includes a decent amount of diversity in its extreme metal delivery, how easy/hard was it to balance the various influences at play in your music?
Troy: A lot of it just came naturally. We weren’t trying to go out of our way to have the blend of styles we do, it’s just the way it ended up coming together with all of our musical influences.
How did you decide on the order of the songs?
Chase: Troy decided and no one could convince him otherwise.
Steve: Finding the right flow for the album and for live shows.
What’s you favourite song on the album, and why?
Steve: Throes of the Devourer just because I don’t sing on it, hahaha!, but seriously Liar Betrayed is one of my favourites mostly because of how personal the lyrics are to me .
Troy: Liar is definitely one of my favourites as well. That song has a little bit of everything in it and it’s always a fun one to play.
With members that have a lot of experience in other bands, how would you say Cave Bastard’s music differs from these other groups? Is there a conscious differentiation, or is this something that comes naturally?
Troy: Definitely something that just comes naturally.
Chase: Uh huh.
What was the recording process like?
Steve: It was Punny and Tetrisy.
Troy: I had a great time, it’d been a while since I’ve been in the studio, it was nice to be back at it.
What was it like working with Billy Anderson?
Troy: Awesome! Billy is amazing at what he does and have always had an awesome time working with him.
Steve: Billy was very open minded out about what we wanted and he had some great ideas that we ended up using on the record. it was a great experience and overall a really great dude, love to work with him again.
Troy: Agreed, Billy rules!
Nick: it was very enjoyable.
Chase: It was intimidating.
Now that the album is finished and out, what have the reactions been like so far?
Steve: So far the feed back has been good. Honestly I expected more negative than positive.
In hindsight, would you have done anything differently if you had to do this album over again?
Troy: Yep, been better prepared for sure.
Chase: Nods head in agreement.
Nick: agree with Troy.
How did you choose the cover artwork, and what does it mean to you? Do you think cover art is still important in today’s increasingly digital age?
Steve: Of course, I mean it goes hand in hand with metal. Heavy distorted riffs and heavy drums and badass album art. It’s all a part of the experience and a part of that is being able to hold the artwork and study it and use it as a visual aid to the auditory experience.
What’s you favourite format for listening to music – physical/digital/no preference/etc.?
Troy: Physical for sure. I love the way the music sounds on vinyl, but I do stream music quite a bit at work and home.
Nick: Prefer physical, but I find myself listening to digital formats more often.
What does the future hold for Cave Bastard?
Troy: We’re getting ready to hit the road for a 2 week west coast tour to support the album and working on our next record.
Steve: And hopefully making our way across the rest of the United States and over to Europe.
Any final words?
Steve: Bang your fucking heads.
Troy: Be excellent to each other.