Friday, August 2, 2013

Vanessa Nocera, part 3 (of 3)

Vanessa Nocera, part 3 (of 3). In parts 1 and 2, Vanessa gave an insight into the death metal of Skeletal Spectre, some biographical information and Razorback Records. Now, Vanessa explains her musical projects. I hope that you check it out because it’s a lot of music. I told you, she is a metal workaholic!
Can you explain a bit about all your musical projects, please? I understand that Howling is your newest musical project?
Vanessa: I’ll do this in a nutshell if I can, haha! SCAREMAKER (guitars/bass/vocals/songwriter/lyricist): I write all the music and some lyrics; it’s old-school death metal with black, thrash, and doom influences. It’s a horror-themed band and was on hiatus for a while, but now we are discussing the next album.
WOODEN STAKE (bass/vocals/lyricist) Two-piece death/doom band with Wayne Sarantopoulos and the theme of this band is generally Satanism, the occult, witchcraft, and the next album has some surprises ahead that I won’t disclose right now. SKELETAL SPECTRE (All vocals/lyricist)
Swedish death/doom with lyrics centered on folklore and now Voodoo. I’m not on the first album as vocalist, but I wrote lyrics, created the concept for the cover artwork, and was executive producer. When Rogga heard my clean singing in WODEN STAKE he asked to join SKELETAL SPECTRE as the vocalist. LOATHSOME (bass/lyricist/and now vocals)
I played bass on the demo and wrote some lyrics for it. I did not have a chance to record bass for the album because of moving and selling off gear, but I have a set of lyrics on the album, though I was not credited. The next release will be a new lineup with me doing some vocals this time.
ORLOFF (vocals/lyricist) My alias in this band is Alucarda Bellows and I’m one of the vocalists in the band and I write lyrics. I’m hoping to see another release from ORLOFF either at the end of this year or early next year.
HOWLING (all vocals/all lyrics) HOWLING is thrashy death metal with catchy riffs and amazing solos by guitarist Tony Proffer who writes all the music and performs all the guitar and bass. It’s the best-selling band on Razorback and probably now the most popular band I’m in. We’ve been featured in Rue Morgue magazine, Decibel, and HorrorHound.
CAULDRON BURIAL (all guitars/bass/all vocals/songwriter/lyricist) Returning to my death/black metal days on this project which we will hopefully have a demo soon.
Is Loathsome still active? If so, what's going this year with it?
Vanessa: Yes, it’s still active, and like I said earlier, there are some new members. Will Greenwood is now on drums, Tony Proffer is the guitarist, I’m still the bassist, and now the vocals will be shared by me and a few other people including Nev who was the original vocalist. We’ve been working on a new EP, so we should have that available soon once the lyrics are written and the vocals are recorded.
Scaremaker, from the name, appears to be a horror metal band?
Vanessa: SCAREMAKER is definitely a horror band about movies, comics, and general horror worship; Hell, it’s named after a horror movie. I play all guitars, bass, and lead vocals. I write all the music and about half of the lyrics. We just repressed the debut album “What Evil Have They Summoned…” so that was a great feeling that the album did so well in a 2 and a half year span. There will definitely be a second full-length album from us REAL soon!
Finally, what about Wooden Stake? What is the situation with Wooden Stake?
Vanessa: Unfortunately, WOODEN STAKE has been on hold for too, too long. Wayne moved to California and started focusing on other projects and focusing on change in his personal life, so the band is kind of on hiatus. We’re discussing the future of the band more and more, and we actually have a release in the works, so there will be more news on that as time goes on. I’m always ready to work on new material, but things will eventually fall into place.
In total, how many instruments do you play?
Vanessa: I play guitar, bass, keyboards, accordion, harmonica, and of course, I sing. I have always wanted to be a drummer, but never put much time into learning. If I knew how to play drums I would probably never leave my studio, haha. Other instruments I would love to learn are to properly play piano and organ, violin, cello, and flute.
Vanessa, why do you think that death metal--the "extreme" genre, about not being "fake," and being "heavy" and "brutal" and all of these things---why is it that death metal bands are using fake drums or drum programming or sound replacement technology? It seems that only a minority of bands are using the sounds of the drums used in the studio, and instead we are receiving these perfectly robotized, clinically clicky drums. Who's to say that the drummer even played those notes, anyway? Are death metal drummers and musicians not getting upset about this situation in metal?
Vanessa: Well, I can’t say that I’m not on any recording where there are drum machines, but personally I would never write music to a drum machine and I would never have music that I wrote recorded over a drum machine. I can’t take much pride in that, I’m sorry to say. I like the sound of real drums and tethered bass drums and still stand behind what I’ve always said that drum machines sound too weak. With that being said, I can say that drummers that I have spoken to over the years have expressed their disdain toward drum machines and rightfully so. It’s like computers taking jobs away from people. The funny thing is though, real drummers are hard to find these days.
Metal people tend to be pretty proud about their music, and "integrity" and things like that. Yet, the metal listeners are bombarded with these albums that sound so plastic, from the drums to the vocal effects (some bands are going way overboard with the "monster"-like effects), that when a person sees this stuff live, it totally does not sound like the album. If you were the producer, what would you do differently to fix the current state of affairs? If you had the power to decide all these things.
Vanessa: That’s the thing, I am either one of the people or THE person in the throne of decision making on ANYTHING I’m involved in. I produce all of my albums and some of the albums on Razorback. Though I can’t mix and master music (I would love to learn, by the way), I let the person who is in charge of that know that I don’t like vocal effects and I don’t like too many flashy sounds on the guitar either, but I don’t mind it if the sounds can be translated through pedals on an amp.
OK, I will end here. Please give the relevant information for following what's going on with your musical endeavors! Thanks! I had a 1000 other things to ask you, but I don't want to give you a heart attack with all these questions. Vanessa: Thanks for the interview! Ask as many questions as you want next time, haha! I have so many websites and a couple of youtube channels it’s probably easier for everyone to just look me up on facebook. I’m easy to find and I add everyone. I’ll leave a couple of links here:

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