Interview with Sourvein

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Sourvein’s latest album Aquatic Occult is surely one of the most enjoyable records to come out so far this year. I managed to catch up with mainman T-Roy and went a bit deeper into the waters…

For those who are unfamiliar with your band – introduce yourself!

Aloha. I am T-Roy I sing and play guitar for Sourvein among many other things.

Give us a bit of background to Sourvein

Well we started in the Cape Fear 23 years ago and we been on the road every since bringing our sound world wide and released many records and still going for it 100%.

What are your influences?

There’s a lot man, everything from Black Sabbath to Howling Wolf to Bad Brains and Amebix to Blue Cheer and Peter Tosh, Blackflag to Bauhaus to Kiss.

What are you listening to at the moment that you would like to recommend?

The new Witchcraft album Nucleus is awesome!!!!! I wanna tour with them…Low Desert Punks, Black Power Flower is rad…and new Goatess album and Iggy Pop’s record. Om is great…Yeah to name a few.

How do you feel that you fit into the wider music scene?

I feel we a straight up and have a good live show and the music can do the talking. I feel given the right opportunity and right setting we can fit in anywhere people like a good rock show.

Sourvein Band

Give us a bit of background to Aquatic Occult – any particular concepts or ideas you want to discuss?

It’s an idea I had a loose theme of the ocean mysterious and to me that’s what Aquatic Occult means. It’s written in abstract word play and metaphors surrounding the island I am from and the ocean’s creatures. And tales of pirates, sunken ships, hurricanes and castaways.

How do you go about writing your songs?

It starts with a riff or lyric and I just build from there or if someone else has a riff I arrange it to fit my vocals. But it I usually like to start with the music. Sometimes I have lyrics ready or times I have to make them fit. It’s whatever is best for the song.

Was there a conscious decision to keep the songs relatively short, or did that just happen naturally?

Well on some yeah they are interludes like Mermaids and Bermuda Sundown. But some others just came out that way then I noticed we could put more songs in to show different sides and thats something new for us, we usally keep em around four minutes but I don’t like songs too long anyway. Some of my favourite songs from growing up are under two minutes. Like Corrosion of Conformity’s Kiss of Death.

Tell us about the album artwork

It was a vision I had of things that inspired the lyric. All the different elements are in there they all go to the songs and music other images I used are from the island I am from and the Cape Fear river. But artist Jordan Barlow took my sketches and really brought this thing to life. He’s a amazing artist from New Orleans, he tattoos and does other art. He also just did a album cover for High on Fire. We been working together on this for a few years and he really nailed what I wanted.

How did the recording process go?

It was hard work but anything good is going to be. We had some ups and downs but that’s part of it sometimes you just keep rolling. We made it happen no matter what. Mike Dean is great to work with…It really went well though pretty organic in the way it flowed. I thought I worked hard on the lyrics but they also flowed pretty smooth all and all it was a very enriching experience and a pleasure.

What’s your favourite song on the album and why?

Umm, I don’t know that’s hard. I have a few but I’d have to say Capsized. Because I wrote the riffs on my porch and Reed Mullin destroyed that song on drums. And my good friend from the hometown Dave Capps is on it he was the guy already doing in town so he inspired me a great deal so it was awesome to come back and get him on this album. That means a lot to me. It’s a kicking track as well.

What does the future hold for Sourvein?

Support Aquatic Occult. Looking into booking a tour in the UK and Europe now and the USA. So we are touring soon as possible, I wanna go to Australia and Japan. Promoters get in touch. We also want to do one of those metal cruises. Also want to hurry back to the studio already got five songs smoking and to be honest it’s some of my favourite riffs ever so I am looking forward to backing up Aquatic Occult very soon. We are looking forward to everything…Thanks T-Roy

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Sourvein – Aquatic Occult (Review)

SourveinThis is the fourth album from these US Sludge/Doom veterans.

Sourvein return with an aquatic-themed album, it seems.

The band play their sludge with a raw energy that seems to tap into something primeval and old, probably something lurking in the deepest waters in the darkest ocean.

With a heavy sound that’s warmly analogue, these songs have a kind of retro vibe to them that manages to eschew any of the normal bullshit trappings that such a term usually involves. Rather, what we have here is music that’s honest, visceral and not afraid to get dirty, (wet?).

The songs have groove and melody, both of which are used well throughout the playing time. It’s an endearing mix of influences that combine on this release, with everything from Electric Wizard, Eyehategod, Black Sabbath, Acid Bath and Mastodon making it into the melting pot.

Short tracks don’t outstay their welcome, and Sourvein know how to flourish a song with a relatively short playing time for maximum effect.

There are some quality and earthy, (aquatic?), guitar solos included, alongside a bass that just sounds really, really good.

The singer reveals himself to be quite versatile, with clean and rough singing, as well as throaty shouts used where necessary. He has a lot of presence and charisma, which can also be said of the songs as a whole. Taken together the music and the vocal performance make for a very strong collection of tracks that are both catchy and memorable.

Well, this is very, very enjoyable. Sourvein stick out from the crowd as having something a bit special and being a bit different from the norm.

You gotta get this, or Poseidon will be pissed.