Interview with Bones

Bones play a simple but very effective brand of no-nonsense Death Metal/Crust which can be heard on their recently released album Sons of Sleaze. I’ve enjoyed listening to this album and have loved their previous work in Usurper, so when the opportunity arose to ask them a few questions I dived in.

For people who are new to the band – introduce Bones!

Bones Band

Sure. Bones is a filthy metal band from Chicago. Our lineup is: Joe Warlord-Drums, Carcass Chris-Guitars/Vox and Jon Necromancer-Bass/Vox. We’re a newer band that formed in ‘09, but we’ve been around forever. All 3 of us have been in Usurper together back in the ‘90s-’00s. We play raw, unpolished metal. We’re not interested in sounding “perfect” or “clean”. We feel that Metal has lost its balls over the years. Now bands spend way too much money to make a studio perfect album that sounds stale, wimpy and terribly boring. Bones is the exact opposite of all that shit.

What are your main influences?

As a band we’re influenced by all the great metal and hard rock that mostly came out from the 70s-90s. I think it’s our individual influences that make Bones sound the way that we do. Joe is way into great drummers like Keith Moon, Dave Lombardo, Neil Peart, etc, while Chris is influenced by guitar greats like Eddie Van Halen, Uli Jon Roth, Kirk Hammett, and he’s a huge Carlos Cavazo fan. I’m way into Dee Dee Ramone, Cliff Burton, Martin Ain, and John Entwistle. Its the weird tension from combining all these influences that make us tick.

What are you listening to at the moment that you want to recommend?

Ptahil’s “Almighty Propagator of Doom and Despair” has been stuck in my stereo for awhile. Super weird metal from Indiana/Michigan. The shit is brilliant and needs be heard to be believed. They’re even better live. Also, Autopsy’s “Headless Ritual” is fucking killer. Love it when a veteran band like Autopsy can make it seem so effortless to continue making such mindfucking, influential metal. Both these bands make pure music not influenced by image or marketing.

Your songs have a savage feeling that’s mixed with a sheer enjoyment of all things Metal. How did you create the songs?

We work together on everything. Usually one person comes up with a couple riffs that go together or have a rough idea of a concept. We rehearse often, so we bring our ideas up while they’re fresh and then we start working the problem; coming up with the nuts and bolts of arrangement, whatever. We usually have 3 very different ideas and we argue them out over a couple of weeks until we got it nailed down. Same with lyrics. It’s easier when 1 person does everything and writes everything, but we think this way the end result sounds better. It takes longer but its worth it.

Your album has a very raw and nasty sound – how much of this was deliberate and how much was chance?

Well, its what we sound like. When the band formed we all wanted a break from the formula of signing with a “big” underground label and spending too much time or money in the studio. The last albums we did in Usurper were like that. We were signed to Earache who were giving us $10,000 budgets to go in the studio for weeks and create something that didn’t really represent us. By the time a band is done multitracking and quantizing and autotuning everything you’re not left with anything real. With Bones we decided right away that we never wanted to be in that situation again. We recorded the drums, guitars and bass live. We only took a couple of takes for each song. Both of our albums were done like this. We didn’t do any multitracking or doubling of parts. What you hear is what we sound like at a show or at a rehearsal.

The feeling of the album is very much one of “I don’t care, I’m playing my songs my way”, (as it should be). How do you feel you fit into the wider Metal scene?

We don’t care how we “fit” in the scene. We never did before, and at this advanced age we could really give two shits. “Scene” people are usually “lame” people.

On Sons of Sleaze you covered Fear of Napalm by Terrorizer – how did you decide to cover this particular band/song?

Bones Logo

We usually mess around at practice with cover songs. Its hilarious sometimes, but there are always a couple of songs that everyone intuitively knows how to play like “Black Magic” by Slayer or something. We were messing around with different songs as a joke, but we kept coming back to “Fear of Napalm”. We played it with a nice groove and we thought our version sounded enough like Bones, but still stayed true to the original. We thought we’d record it when we were in the studio for “Sons of Sleaze” and see if it would make the cut with the rest of the songs. We liked the way it came out so we included it on the album.

What are your plans for the future?

As soon as I send this out I’m walking to the liquor store and then picking up a pizza…..

Thanks!

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Bones – Sons of Sleaze (Review)

BonesUS group Bones’ second album doesn’t mess around; no silly intros or anything just straight into a simple guitar riff and then into the action. They play a primitive brand of Death Metal and Crust that is positively rabid.

They bang, crash and wallop their way through twelve songs, (including a Terrorizer cover), and at the end of it still have giant maniacal grins on their faces that lets you know they’re in this for the long haul and they aren’t going away. And nor should they.

This is a band who don’t care about sounding polished. This is proper, raw, underground music for people who know what they like. The weakest link for me personally in most bands with a rawer sound is usually the drums, but here they have an organic, analogue sound that propels these mangy tracks forwards and upwards so the rawness works in their favour and not against them.

Bones do slow and mid-paced perfectly well, but for me they really shine when going all out in top gear. Snarling and foaming at the mouth; these are the songs that make you sit up and take notice.

This is music that just couldn’t care less. It’s not for everyone, but nor should it be. If you are in the mood for some no-frills aggression in a very raw, old-school Crust style then you could do a lot worse than popping this in the player.