Welcome to Demo:listen, your weekly peek into the future of underground metal. Whether it’s death, black, doom, sludge, grind, thrash, heavy, speed, progressive, stoner, retro, post-, etc. we’re here to bring you the latest demos from the newest bands. On this week’s Demo:listen, we expose the world to Sickdeer.
Sickdeer is a sick D.C. black metal trio who play frequent live shows (one of which I will eventually actually witness) in the Washington D.C. area. Their sound falls into that exciting no-man’s-land between frenetic aggression and harrowing midpaced corrosion. After firing off a solid self-titled EP, Sickdeer return this month with a gruesome new full-length, The Wretched of the Earth, that adds new dimensions to their dessicated savagery.
We asked drummer Shawnt Grigorian about his band’s origins and ambitions, and you can read up on his thoughts while you summon unholy terror listening to The Wretched of the Earth.
How did Sickdeer form and start playing together?
[Guitarist]Garo and I have been writing music together for over a decade, but we decided to take things more seriously at some point in 2015. [Vocalist] Andre and I had played together in our first band when we were very young and reconnected musically more recently, which ultimately lead to the formation of Sickdeer. Our formation came at a point in time when the three of us were all on the same page as far as our aspirations in playing music.
Did you have any particular driving artistic desire or ambitions for what you wanted Sickdeer to be?
We want Sickdeer to be a collaborative effort of all our artistic abilities and inspirations, which centers on writing dark and extreme music.
How have your shows been so far? How often do you perform, and where?
Every show we have performed has been amazing, from meeting new friends and great people to just having a good time together as a band. We’ve played extensively in D.C., we try to play as many shows as possible and are looking to play as much as we can to support the new album.
Do you write music collectively or individually? What creative process is most comfortable to you?
The process is ultimately a collective effort in the end. Writing new music starts with one riff, but we all really pitch different ideas while shaping the songs until we get the end product.
What was the recording process like for the new album? Any surprisingly smooth or difficult issues?
We had a great experience recording this album. We recorded with our friend Yavé Rust at Blackfire Studios, who knew exactly what kind of sound we wanted for this record, couldn’t be happier with how things sound.
Does Sickdeer exist as part of a greater musical community, or do you feel like you operate separately?
We are proud to be part of the extreme music community in D.C., but we also feel that Sickdeer doesn’t necessary align with any singular musical genre scene. Although we feel our writing stems in black metal, we natural see ourselves on a broader spectrum of extreme music.
What are some recent shows you’ve attended by other bands? Favorites?
We’ve seen a lot of great shows recently. Some of the highlights have been seeing Inquisition, Mgła, Misery Signals, Zhrine. Watching all of these great bands has given us a lot of inspiration to perform with Sickdeer.
What comes next for Sickdeer?
We plan to play as many shows as possible, write more intense music and continue supporting our friends and all the great bands in heavy music.
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