Some bands are marriages of convenience. Others, like Salt Lake City-based metal group Stalemate Flesh, are wedded by inconvenience.
"The band formed when I became increasingly upset at the world around me," said Christus Black, singer and guitar player for the duo, which includes bandmate Spikehilda on additional vocals and keys.
"Some people would say our opinions are extreme, but they are centrist. I looked around and saw an increasing amount of anger and resentment in everyone, left or right, at what was going on in the world around them. Nothing getting accomplished, unemployment at silly rates, and it doesn’t matter what side of the fence you’re on. Right now the system is failing and everyone is feeling the same about where things are going."
With two upcoming shows and an album due out soon, Black answered email questions about the role of visuals, goals and sleep.
How did the band and album come together?
I wanted to put [our anger] to music and began writing [the album] "Freedom 2020." It took us a year to build our studio and get the album done. So from February to October we did the album. We think it came out raw, gritty and dense. We started playing this year with a show in March. Our debut "Freedom 2020" will be released on Sept. 11, and we will be celebrating that as well at the Bar Deluxe show.
What do you want to accomplish with your live shows?
Our goals for the shows are to trigger certain parts of the brain with our comical whimsy. Events like me eating a chef’s knife and other banter will get the brain stimulated to receive our ultimate goal: To get people to think. To read. To look at every aspect of life, whether you agree with it or not, and make an informed decision. Don’t just listen to what you want to hear. And we figure the mind is more receptive after activating the lizard part of the brain with good clean fun.
So let me ask you a random question: Why are the holes in cats’ fur always in the right places for their eyes?
Because in the current world, cats are the perfect creature from an evolutionary perspective. Their eyes are set in such a way to where they only come to you if you have a shiny object. Cats will completely ignore you, in any visual way at least, unless you have something shiny. The reason this makes them No. 1 is that this is the same condition exhibited by Twilight fans. And with men being conditioned now to deal with their women only by responding to shiny objects, they are better equipped to deal with cats. This clearly gives cats an evolutionary victory.
How much of a part do visuals, and an offbeat sense of humor, play in your band?
Our music and visuals are just a little offbeat fun. We are serious about what we do, but I also know that most people are OK with extreme violence as opposed to any kind of human contact. So we always felt if you were one of the people who got the edited version of "Titanic," we’d be right up your alley in the realm of violence.
As the election approaches, does your anger about Washington, D.C., have an impact on your voting?
I think everyone should vote. It is a right that I think everyone should exercise. That being said, I also think people should realize that their vote isn’t going to change anything. If you really want to make a change, send money to a super PAC or a lobby organization. As much of an idealist as I want to be — and I would like to think that we haven’t gotten to a point where constituents now have no voices — but it is what it is. If you’re a congressman and you have John Q. Public on one hand and a guy taking you out to a lobster lunch and offering to give you $200,000 and will run ads to change the minds of your constituents on the other — there’s an old saying about an empty hand that comes to mind.
How much sleep do the members of your group need to fulfill their musical mission?
It depends on our goals of that day. If we actually want to have a good practice and good show, we try to get at least seven hours. If we want to create an atmosphere most Nickelback fans would call "rockin’," we need 30 minutes.
Would you eat at a Chik-Fil-A?
I would only eat there by sharing my fries with a cute boy.
Stream a copy of the extreme metal band’s "Freedom 2020" at www.soundcloud.com/stalemateflesh.
Contact • www.facebook.com/stalemateflesh.
See the band liveL
When • Wednesday, Aug. 29; with Nevertanezra
Where • Burts Tiki Lounge, 726 S. State St., Salt Lake City; call 801-521-0572 for details
Tickets • $5 at the door
When • Wednesday, Sept. 12; with Zombiance
Where • Bar Deluxe, 666 S. State St., Salt Lake City; call 801-532-2914 for details
Tickets • $5 at the door
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