Despite spending the past four years battling low tides and being imprisoned by greasy landlubbers, the scourge of the Atlantic coast, Swashbuckle has finally returned! Armed with a four-shanty platter of spite and a tour reinforced by California-spawned, plague-ridden goblins Nekrogoblikon, the mighty, follicley-enhanced pirates are setting sail once again to bring metal and malarkey to the masses! Read on, as Examiner hoists the mainsail with Admiral Nobeard himself.
What prompted the emphasis on a crossover/grindcore sound?
We’ve always mixed crossover/grind in with our style. It’s a bit more prominent now because it’s what I feel like writing. No real mystery behind it. I like short songs that are abrasive and chaotic.
Why do you think, if crossover metal is a combining of two styles of heavy music, does the genre have fewer fans than either of its influences?
Because most metal dudes aren’t down with punk/hardcore and most punk/hardcore dudes aren’t down with metal. I love crossover, but your average power metal kid isn’t going to be stoked to hear two-step riffs mixed with overly-thrashy verses that lead into a mosh part (or breakdown for you chuds out there.) It’s an acquired taste.
I'm only asking this because of the amount of time that has passed since your last album. After a four-year hiatus, why only release an EP?
We’re release “only an EP” because we’re not done working on the rest of the songs we have for a full album. Simple as that. We have the tour with Nekrogoblikon coming up and instead of just having a bunch of shirts to sell, we now have a new EP for fans to check out and enjoy or hate or whatever the f***. Basically it’s something to tie you over until we get everything demoed and squared away for the next full-length.
Because of this hiatus, the tour and EP seemed to come out of nowhere. How did the stars align to bring this together?
Pretty simple, Nekrogoblikon asked if we’d do a bunch of dates with them and it worked with our schedules. So we said yes. Again, we figured fans might want some new tunes so we did the EP. It’s not rocket science….or is it?
It's no secret that you have been burned by industry; what keeps you going and looking forward?
Yeah, everyone gets burned. That’s what happens when you play with fiiiiiaaaaaah! Sure we’re salty, but we were salty before. Our goal with this band was to always have fun, and we always have fun with Swashbuckle. We get to be our a$$hole-selves and have a blast playing tunes and shows. People are either stoked that we’re there to lighten up the mood or pissed that we’re filling space on their favorite band’s show. Either way, we will make fun of everyone.
Can we ever expect a US release for "Crime Always Pays"?
It was released on iTunes. So go download it. If you want a physical copy, go to Nuclear Blast’s webstore and order it. I’m sure it won’t see the light of day in the states. Start a petition if you want it released so badly. People hate that record anyway…bunch of pansies.
Has the different members' activities with side bands a means of keeping things fresh? Do you guys get bored easily or have too many ideas to express with one project?
We’re idiots who find a lot of things funny. So whatever band/project we’re involved in is obviously going to give us a reprieve from any of the others we’re also in. It keeps it fresh in the sense that it gives us time away from a certain project, so we can come back to it and figure out how dumb and ridiculous we can be with it.
How did you hook up with Get It Right Records?
I’ve known Dave and John from Get This Right Records for years from playing in hardcore bands, so we had the tour coming up and we wanted to do a small release. They we’re cool with it and they have that sweet punk/hardcore ethic about releases. Plus, vinyl is nifty.
I remember hearing “Poopdeck Toilet Wreck” live a couple years ago. Are all the songs on the EP tunes that had been sitting around, or are any of them new? Does this EP represent the current direction of Swashbuckle?
A few of the songs have been around for years. We’ve been writing new songs since 2012, so yes, they are a couple years old to us, but not to the people who are hearing them for the first time. We have other songs written that aren’t a full on grindfest, but yeah we do get more and more aggressive and faster with each release. There will also be those anthem-jams that we have some times as well as some other wacky stuff. Trust me, once the full length is release, you’ll have more than enough ‘Buckle songs to bitch and complain about.
Are these songs reactions to your negative experiences in the biz?
“I Hate the Sea (And Everything in It) definitely is. I’m always mad, and I was really mad at all the industry bullsh** so it comes out in there. You’d never pick up on it unless you read the lyrics, or asked us about it. The other three; not really.
Tell me about the experience that inspired "Beer Goggles."
Commodore Redrum penned that brilliant piece of lyrical art. Sometimes you get drunk and you take home a fat chick. Sometimes hot chicks get drunk and take home a fat dude. Do you have what it takes to f*** some whales? Man the harpoons, let’s bag some tail!
Is "Slaughter Upon International Waters" based on an occurrence on the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise?
Yeah it is. We wrote it about the first one they did. Basically no one knew what to expect and everyone had a blast. We drank the boat dry before leaving port and they delayed it and had to restock right away. So much debauchery and shenanigans on that cruise. It was an epic time deemed worthy of a not so epic song.
When you were active in the scene, Running Wild called it quits. When you dropped out of sight, they came back. Coincidence?
No. I’m sure Rockin’ Rolf’s other project wasn’t bringing in that sweet Running Wild cash, so dude needed a payday.
Additionally, in your absence, Alestorm seems to be more popular than ever. Is there a connection between their rise and your disappearance?
Well, our old management picked them up, realized that they have more potential to make more money than we do and we got dropped. Pretty simple story. Their sound is more accessible and they wear eye-makeup. Chicks apparently love douchebag band dudes in eye-makeup. It’s documented fact; just check Wikipedia. We don’t give a sh**, honestly. Good for them. We’re still bros even though they need mascara to sell records.
We dropped off for a while because we got no tour offers, label support was next to none, and our record last record didn’t get the push it should have. So from 2011 until now we’ve just been working on sh**. We have jobs; we don’t have delusions of grandeur of making it huge in the industry. We will still put out metal records, and laugh at too-cool-for-school metal dorks and make fun of everyone and everything that we come across.
You are touring with Nekrogoblikon. What makes pirates and goblins a good touring pair?
We both like fun and don’t care what anyone thinks. At least WE don’t. Can’t speak for the goblins.
And what can fans expect from such a pairing?
They can expect shirts with frills and/or animals on it. They can expect to watch us play Magic: The Gathering at the merch table. They can expect fun. They can expect to be swayed into buying our sweet merch. BUY IT.
Catch Swashbuckle on the road with Nekrogoblikon on the following dates:
- Sunday, August 3 at Championships in Trenton, NJ (*Swashbuckle only)
- Tuesday. August 5 at Brighton Music Hall in Boston, MA
- Wednesday, August 6 at Webster Hall (Studio Hall) in New York, NY
- Thursday, August 7 at Simons 677 in Providence, RI
- Saturday, August 9 at Katacombs in Montreal, QC, Can. (*Swashbuckle only)
- Sunday, August 10 at Mavericks in Ottawa, ON, Can.
- Monday, August 11 at Sneaky Dees in Toronto, ON, Can.
- Saturday, August 16 at Empire in Springfield, VA
- Sunday, August 17 at Amityville Music Hall in Long Island, NY
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