Sabrina Ramdoyal caught up with Ben Savage of Whitechapel at the Academy 2 in Manchester on their recent tour supporting Job For A Cowboy.
Can you introduce yourself to our readers and what do you do in the band?
I’m Ben Savage and I play lead guitar in Whitechapel.
How is it different working with Metal Blade compared to Siege of Amida/Candlelight?
Metal Blade is definitely more of our style, Candlelight is more underground black metal, kinda older more established bands. With us being a young band starting up I wasn’t sure it was the right place for us but it was a one record deal, it got our name out there which is all we can ask for our first record. Moving to Metal Blade we really have no complaints with them, it’s the best metal label and their track record shows it.
You hooked up with Jason Suecof to record A New Era of Corruption, what was it like working with him?
He was a mad man… but in the best way possible! I don’t know how to describe his madness; he defines the word madness, kinda like a comedic mad professor. He’s a funny man but keeps us all sane in the chaos.
Do you have any plans to head back into the recording studio in 2011?
Maybe late next year but I think we’re trying to record an EP before then. We gotta keep putting new music out there so our fans still think we’re relevant.
When we think of Tennessee, metal isn’t the first thing we think of. How was it being a metal band starting out in Tennessee?
It was hard but it was easy too. It was easy because there wasn’t many bands doing what we do but at the same time because there weren’t many bands there wasn’t a local scene where bands could thrive and build a fan base. We had to keep playing shows to get our name out there before people knew what we were doing. Before we started touring, right on our first tour we released our first record so that really helped a lot.
How do you find the crowds over here in the UK and Europe compared to those back home?
Europe’s like more appreciative, they come out to the shows because appreciate the music not because they want to beat people up. Yeah, UK and Europe are definitely more respectful and responsive to the music.
How do you cope being on the road for so long touring, especially when you’re in a foreign country?
There’s always gonna be tensions but you gotta talk it out or just let it flow. Try not to worry about it and appreciate what you’re doing, these are your brothers. It’s just like being in a relationship, there’s gonna be fun times and also hard times except the relationship is not with just two people it’s a whole band. Luckily enough we are all friends in the band.
What or who are the main inspirations behind the band?
I guess just other musicians that just do it because they love making music and love touring and love doing what they do, it’s inspiring in that sense not just people that do it to make a buck and then back out of it whenever it doesn’t work. I like bands like Opeth and Katatonia, they just keep going after all these years, and they do it for the love of the music.
If you could put together a one off show with 4 bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
Maybe Slipknot, Black Sabbath, Opeth and Bloodbath.
What is your favourite track to play live and why?
Probably ‘Breeding Violence’ off the new record, “A New Era of Corruption” because it’s bouncy and heavy and I get to do a solo in it. It’s a cool track to play as it’s a track off the new record that people don’t expect to be there and it’s fun to play.
And finally do you have any final words for the ThisIsNotAScene.com readers?
We’re gonna keep doing what we’re doing, give us a shot when it comes to our new record and if you like what we do we’ll love you even more for it!