Michael Ventura Gives Us A Insight Into The World Of Nevertanezra   4 comments

One of the freshest sounding bands to ever grace the pages of Doommantia.com has to be Nevertanezra, the blend of classic metal with epic doom-metal and irresistable melodies is something that has become a little rare in the world of metal these days. I know the word potential is overused these days when it comes to making predictions over the future of some bands but if this band doesn’t get some serious attention in the next year or two then all hope is lost. Here is an interview I did with Michael Ventura, guitarist and main songwriter from the band.

1. Hello Michael, thanks for this interview from me and all the readers of Doommantia.Com. We should start with a bit of history lesson on yourself, how did your life as a metal musician begin?

-Well, in a nutshell I started playing guitar when I was around 12-13 years old and wanted nothing more than to play Heavy Metal like my heroes in: Iron Maiden, Metallica and GWAR (amongst various others). The rest is a series of trying fruitlessly to start bands and jamming with flakes.

2. According to Encyclopedia Metallum, the band started way back in 1999 but so far the EP is the only recording or is there other recordings we don’t know about?

-There is nothing else recorded aside from guitar only demo/rehearsal tapes. Somewhere there is a live rehearsal tape of an early version of ‘Bleak’ with two friends on drums and vocals respectively. There is also painfully rough version of the entire EP with guitars and drums but I’m at a loss as to where they are.

3. On the EP you give a big f**k you to the people who let you down in the past. Can you give us some dirt on what happened?

-Ha Ha Ha, it was my one last bitter feeling to various “musicians” that did what 99% of all musicians do and that’s flake in the middle of the project. While I made a few good friends during that period of my musical life, this message is for those who, for one reason or another, did not follow through with their promises.

4. Where did the name of the band come from? I must admit I still have trouble pronouncing Nevertanezra ha ha.

-Ha ha ha, it’s just something that I came up with one day. It sounded cool and odd so I went for it. At one point I was toying with the idea of going with something else but a friend of mine forbade it on the grounds that it’s just cool.

5. The main thing that impressed me with the 3 songs on the EP is the variety. Is this because of the different time-periods of when the songs were first composed? Also do you have a favorite style?

-The first two songs are from the same period; the last song is from my earlier Thrash days. I slowed it down a lot for the EP to make it fit the Doomy vibe. I didn’t intentionally plan on writing the songs so differently, that’s just how they came out. Several people have told me over the years that my writing/playing style is very unorthodox and I think it shows in the songs. Not only do the songs on the EP differ in style from one another, but the songs on our upcoming début album follow suite.  My favorite style is Doom/Death Metal followed closely by NWOBHM (my first true love in music) and then probably Funeral Doom, I’ve really gotten into that style quite a bit these last couple of years.

6. Can you tell the readers a bit about the other musicians that took part in the recording? I am especially interested in hearing about Devon Angulo, her voice is amazing.

-Devon and her husband Denson are two very dear friends of mine. I met Denson several years ago at a job we both worked at. He owed me a favor and so I had him play on my EP. He has a master’s degree in music and is currently working on his doctorate. He used two of his custom 8 string basses (one of which was fretless) on all three songs. His wife, Devon, is a classically trained singer. I asked him if his wife was game to use her voice and thankfully she was. This was the first time she’s ever recorded professionally and I couldn’t be happier with the outcome. The drummer was also a friend of Denson’s. He’s into Hard Rock but played country for the past 10-20 years, recording and touring with the biggest names in that godforsaken noise you could think of. As far as getting Rick McCoy from Avernus, I contacted him via myspace in an attempt to get more of Avernus’ impossible to get music and we ended up becoming friends. I needed a singer and asked him if he wanted to be on my EP and thankfully he did. Shortly thereafter he said he was interested in being our fulltime singer and it was around that point that I decided to make this project into a proper band. This is why I decided to include another guitarist and a bassist. Sadly, drummers are in painfully short supply in UT, therefore we used a session musician for our début.

7. How will the next release compare to the EP? Seeing as the songs on the EP are pretty old now, does that mean it will be drastically different?

-Drastically different, yes and no. Some of the songs on the album are “older” songs and/or riffs that have been updated and expanded upon. I swore that I wasn’t going to change a thing about a select few songs when I brought Jayke and Kyle Smith on board. However I hadn’t accounted for the great ideas two fresh minds could contribute and I ended up changing them all and really liking the outcome. The songs are considerably heavier and very accidentally experimental. We really intended to try for a more straightforward approach but we ended up with something a million miles away ha ha.

8. Can you fill us in on the new material, song-titles and what we can expect to hear?

-This is bad but we’re still undecided on what to call all the songs. The first track is an instrumental and all of 2-3 minutes long. It was going to be simply just guitars and drums but we added bass at the last second. It’s probably the shortest song we’ll ever do ha ha ha. The second track, one that was also written ages ago, is the longest thing we’ve done to date, and clocks in at just over 17 minutes. It’s something that we’ll probably never play live just because it’s a beast. It’s a very moody song with everything thrown in it. The third track ‘Separation/Anxiety’ was originally a 3-minute Black/Death Metal song that we somehow managed to recreate into a 10-minute romp. A few of our closest friends have heard this track and said it reminds them of “‘Monotheist-era’ Celtic Frost mixed with mid-period Carcass in the beginning. It then goes into a slow and bitter riff that then goes into mid-period Immortal followed by some (accidental) My Dying Bride harmonization. This is followed up by some traditional 80’s Thrash riffing that somehow all makes doomy sense.” The fourth track is the first song that Jayke and I wrote together and is simply epic and full of solos (one of my favorite songs of all time). The fifth track starts off slow and clean and gradually gets heavy and dirty. It’s epic and dark and really closes the album on a bleak note. Like the EP, none of the songs on this album relate to one another. They all sound very different and hopefully, from the description of the third song, full of surprises for all.

9. What is your opinion on the current Heavy Metal scene at the moment? Obviously I love Doom Metal and its sub-genres but outside of that there isn’t a hell of a lot that impresses me.

-Overall I think the scene is constantly improving. Unfortunately there is always the exception of all of the poser “core” bands being labeled as Metal. Outside the Doom scene I’ve been going back to older school bands like: Thin Lizzy, Medusa, Legend, Deep Purple, etc. I’ve also been reacquainting myself with my love of old school US Death and Thrash Metal bands. As far as new non-Doom acts go, there isn’t anything that has really gotten my attention as of late. One of the reasons I started listening to Doom was I was sick of everything being 300 bpm. Mindless blasting with hyper fast riffs just gets old very fast. Doom has so much room for creativity that I can’t understand why it’s never been as popular as Black Metal.

10. Musician question now – What equipment do you use and have you got a kind of formula to writing songs?

-I discovered Schecter guitars a few years back and only use them now. For this album I used a Schecter Damien V with passive EMG pickups. I’ve got a Crate Shockwave GT3500H half-stack and they’re a brand that I’ve relied on for years now. Jayke actually used the guitar I used on the EP for our album, which is a Schecter C-1 Elite with Duncan design pickups. He used a friends Marshall G 100R CD half-stack in the studio. We both used our respective amps distortions and relied on the studio for the effects. Kyle used a Carvin 5 string bass and went through the main board when recording. We tuned to ‘B,E,A,D,#F,B’ because it’s just heavy! We also recorded just one guitar per side to give it a quasi-live feel. Our core philosophy is, if you can’t do it live, don’t do it in the studio. Will we always record like this? I can’t say for sure, but it fits the experimental nature of our album. As far as a formula, I don’t know if I’ve ever had one. I think about riffs, dream about them sometimes and if they stick with me for a week or more I try to play what I remember. A long time ago I made a conscious decision to try and not play/write like me. I think that has really helped to open up my creativity. I have become more accepting of what I write and am less critical of what comes. It’s something that makes it easier to make music in my opinion.

11. What are your personal ambitions? Do you think an underground “metal” act can get anywhere these days? It seems the only bands gaining success are ones that have been around for years or they have a big corporate machine pushing them along.

-My personal ambitions for this project/band are to either make a living at it, or to be able to make enough to sustain it. I’d love for this band to get signed and tour the world. As far as successful bands, I’d agree with you and say that the older ones seem to have the best success rate, but that coincides with their longevity and dedication to the lifestyle.  A corporate entity seeks to homogenize a sound in order to make it appeal to the widest audience possible. I do not feel they would ever push something that was truly “extreme”. There are mallcore acts that have powerful backing, but overall they are just watered down, prepackaged rebellion for suburbanites. Quantity will never beat quality as far as real music fans are concerned.

12. Now to the immediate future, when will the album been released and how do you plan on distributing the tunes?

-The album release was supposed to be this December but due to several unforeseen issues, it has been pushed back to February or March of next year. As far as distribution, we’re planning on selling it via our myspace page. We’re very anti-downloading so don’t expect to see our songs on any sites, unless they’ve been pirated. If we manage to get a signed or a distribution deal then we’ll post when and where.

13. OK, thanks again Michael for the interview and I hope people wise-up and pay attention to what you are doing. Have you got any last words for the readers?

-Thanks for the interview and to all who like their Metal to sound different, check us out!
Nevertanezra @ MySpace

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Posted November 14, 2010 by doommantia in Nevertanezra

4 responses to “Michael Ventura Gives Us A Insight Into The World Of Nevertanezra

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  1. I bought their EP on this interview alone and was been pleasantly surprised. DOOOOOOOOM!!!!

  2. Great interview and excellent band!

  3. I was lucky enough to hear one of the tracks from the upcoming album and I CAN'T wait for it to come out! HURRY UP!!!!!!

  4. Very good stuff!

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