Bone Gnawer Feastful Interview

1. The name of the band Bone Gnawer, is interesting to say the least and sounds as if there is a story behind it. Where did the name come from and what is the story?

Kam: The name BONE GNAWER actually came from a song title I had. While I was in another band {DENIAL FIEND} I was working on lyrics and a “new direction” for what the next album was going to be for that band. I already had the idea and theme going more into a ‘cannibal/gore/horror’ direction for DF. DF’s theme on the debut -“THEY RISE” was a very zombie themed direction, and I wanted to take the band’s lyrics into a more ‘gore’ influenced direction yet keep a campy tongue-n-cheek style to them. The idea is from my own ‘strange & bizarre’ view of the world, I view all humanity as being cannibalistic in some way or another. We all seem to devour ourselves in one way or another… maybe not literally – but figuratively speaking we consume – chew – and gnaw ourselves to the bone in one way or another. Thus the name BONE GNAWER was born from that idea.

2. Can you briefly summarize how the band formed and what you do in Bone Gnawer?

Kam: Well, I am Kam Lee {formerly of MASSACRE, ex-DENIAL FIEND, formerly of MANTAS/DEATH ’83-’85}-the vocalist and main lyric writer for the band BG. I was first in contacted back in early 2008 by Rogga Johansson {Paganizer/Ribspreader/Demiurg}-(bassist and music writer for BONE GNAWER) about working on a recording project together called REVOLTING. Yet soon after starting work on that project some things with the record label that organized that fell thru. So Rogga and I then decided to just keep working together on a new band, and we decided together to create – BONE GNAWER from that. Shortly after we added Ronnie Bjornstrom {Hate Ammo/Ribspreader}-(guitarist for BG) and Morgan Lie {Nagflar/Hate Ammo}-(drums for BG). BONE GNAWER then became more of a “real band” after that.

3. Your lyrics are infused with heavy detail and raw emotion. What is it that normally gives you inspiration when writing lyrics and is there a concept behind the music you create?

Kam: Well the concept and main theme would have to be ‘cannibalism’ and based on ‘modern anthropophagus’, but also I take influences from horror movies that have those themes and concepts, as well as my own misanthropy! I view most humanity as pigs – and worthless swine that should be slaughtered! Haha! LOL;) I’m also a huge ‘horror movie’ fan and just a fiend for horror! I know a lot of bands have maybe used these themes loosely in their image and song lyrics, but I don’t know of many bands that truly grasp these theme and concepts as their “main theme” as we do in BONE GNAWER! I mean the cannibal theme – the whole concept of the band being based on cannibalism that is! BONE GNAWER’s overall theme and concept is totally based on cannibalism, torture, serial murder, and gore! Even bands like Cannibal Corpse- don’t have a 100% cannibalistic theme. Yet – I wanted to make BONE GNAWER a band that totally embraces the cannibal theme and make it a total gore influenced band. I find that a majority of “gore and horror themed bands” get a bad reputation in the music industry… the media and even jaded fans look down at any band that would have a gore base theme.

Alot of “gore bands” are looked at as being ‘untalented’ and even looked at as being a joke. I wanted to have a band that would not only take the concepts of gore and horror serious – but also wanted to have the music approach be done and taken seriously as well. Even though most of my lyrics have a campy tongue-n-cheek approach to them, I still find the underlining theme behind them as being very serious.

In my own beliefs – I don’t really fear an imaginary demonic force taking over, or some kind of ‘re-animated corpse’ coming back to life to eat my brains. But to me real horror comes in the disguise of “normal”. You know, like those next door neighbors that look normal – but really desire to roast you up on a spit and eat your flesh. Those guys that are the sexual pedophile deviants living in your neighborhood, that always seem nice and waves to all the school buses filled with children as it drives on by. Those guys are the “real horror and terrors in life”! The Albert Fish, and Jeffery Dahmers of society are real “boogeyman” and are more frightening to me then an imaginary make believe “devil” or “demons” or “zombies”.

4. Your new album “Feast Of Flesh,” is coming out how has the reactions been thus far? What can fans expect when they listen to your music?

Kam: So far the reaction has been great – it seems that the fans that find us – find a ‘real old school death metal feeling’ to our approach in our music, and that is the main thing we went for in creating BONE GNAWER. We put the “hooks” back into death metal!! We are highly influenced from the late 80’s – early 90’s style death metal bands that first formed this genre of music, and BONE GNAWER takes that feel and style and we work with-in those parameters. It’s like ‘classic coke’ – we keep to the original formula! Fans can expect to hear pure aggressive 90’s buzz saw Swedish style death metal music – with the catchy lyrical approach of early 90’s FL based Death Metal bands.

5. How do you think you will affect the music scene you are part of?
What are your thoughts on the growing popularity in it as well?

Kam: Well… I would hope that fans that hear BONE GNAWER will recognize the style and feel of our music as being’traditional real death metal’, and not the hyper/ultra/slam gravity blast frog-cricket vocals type death metal that seems
to be all the rave at this moment. We are not modern black metal influenced, and we are not pretending to be something we are not, and we are not trying to imitate the “trends”.

Like I mentioned above – we keep to the original formula of early
death metal bands – that is our style. We are proud Generation X death metallers – not Millinuimal death metallers. We preserve the style, sounds, and feeling of the type of death metal that guys like myself first created back in the late 80’s and early 90’s. What I think is popular in the scene is very derivative, very cookie cutter, and even un-original. We aren’t a young band trying to sound retro – we are all veteran musicians still doing and playing the type of music we help create.

6. Any plans for a music video?

Kam: Budget restraints, and the lack of the band being close together (I live in the US as the other guys live in Sweden) has made it hard to do this. We’ve had some ideas and plans to do a video, but we will have to see what we can do as far as
finances are concerned. Our label doesn’t give us any backing for this or for touring either for that matter… so it’s hard to say if we can get one done for the first album.

7. Many of your songs are so hard and intense that I am sure they translate well into a live setting taking on a whole new life in front of a live audience.
How does it make you feel when the emotion and power that you envisioned in the recording studio, come to life while playing in front of a crowd?

Kam: Well… as weird as this may sound to some – BONE GNAWER hasn’t yet played a live set together. We are all accomplished musicians in our own right… but this band has yet to perform live together. I know once we do – it will be crushing – I know we will bring that raw unhinged style and sound to our live performance that we brought to the album! And I know and feel the crowd will be able to feel that intensity as well.

8. What are the upcoming plans for Bone Gnawer?

Kam: We are hoping to get enough interest from promoters so we can tour. And like I said, our label doesn’t give us tour support. So we need to rely on our album reviews, and sales, as well as our fan base to get us promoter interest. We are hoping that once the album has been circulated awhile – that fan interest will allow us to tour. In the meantime – we have just recorded 3 new tracks that will be appearing on a split with the band BONESAW – out on Aphelion Productions from the UK, hopefully around Halloween 2009. And we are working on “new” material for our follow up release. We will be seeking labels of interest for our next full length album, and hopefully will find one that can financially back us for a tour.

9. How has MYSPACE and the internet impacted your band and do you think downloading helps or hinders the artists?

Kam: MySpace helps a lot, but also can hinder too. I had to take down my own personal MySpace site because of being ‘hassled’ by immature haters and nay sayers. But over all – using it as a promotional tool for a band is good. Down loading from a respected, trusted, and ‘legal’ site to me is o.k. it’s not what I prefer as I like to hold a product in my hand (such as a CD or DVD) – but I support it if it’s done thru proper channels. However, I think ‘illegal’ down loading is killing the music scene from the inside out though… it sucks – because for smaller independent bands it can make or break a band. For big name bands it doesn’t really affect them as much – but for a small fledgling new band, it can be devastating to the band existence. Fans think it’s cool to Bit Torrent or illegally download a bands CD, but honestly those that do are ‘stealing’ from the band members… might as well come over and steal food out of their house, because that is essentially what you are doing. If you really – want to “support the scene” – you don’t steal from it. But we live in a selfish society made this way by modern technology that makes it easy for people to steal.

10. What is the toughest lesson you ever learned in the studio and on the stage?

Kam: Don’t drink heavy amounts of alcohol until after your finished performing – either in the studio or on stage. Haha!

11. What bands would you like to tour with and who has been your favorite to tour with this far? Any particular reason?

Kam: Any of the classic Swedish Death Metal acts like ENTOMBED – GRAVE – UNLEASHED – DISMEMBER – that would be great, Also as an opener for MORBID ANGEL or even CANNIBAL CORPSE would be great too! CARCASS, NAPALM DEATH, or BOLT THROWER, ASPHYX, any of those band or bands like them. I toured with GRAVE back in the early 90’s while I was in MASSACRE – and those guys were great – I would tour with them again anytime!

12. Every band has its musical influences. What are some of the other bands and artists that have greatly influenced you guys and your music?

Kam: Well like I said before – it has to be the early 90’s style Swedish death Metal bands and the early 90’s FL death Metal bands.

13. What’s your reaction when/if a fan told you a very meaningful statement such as
“Your music changed my life?” Has this ever happened to you?

Kam: Well – not so much changed someone’s life – but I guess I have influenced many ‘vocalist’ in my time. Many times from many vocalist that do recognize my influence in the death metal scene, I have been told that I’m the reason death metal vocals exist. That’s something I feel very proud to be a part of. I started in Mantas/Death back in 1983 – at only 14 years old. To have become such an influence on the music scene all of this time and all of these years later to still be recognized for doing that is a huge thing and an honor. I may never get into the “rock-n-roll” hall of fame for creating death metal growling style vocals… but at least some fans recognize my direct influence in creating the style, and that is cool.

14. All of that passion that you play with must be tough on you physically.
How do you prepare for the physical demands of a tour?

Kam: Lots of alcohol – rough sex – and more rough sex and alcohol! Haha! And the fact that I’m a fucking insane brutal maniac helps as well! I’m full of lots and lots of ANGER and HATE! And that helps and keeps me fired up! When I’m home – and just sitting around… if I get too bored! I’ll go the gun range and shoot off a good case of bullets, or pick up my chainsaw – and start it up, go into the back yard and cut into a few large stumps – or swing my axe a few times – chopping up some fire wood – while imagining it’s the fuckers I HATE! I’m also training again in MMA (mixed martial arts) and that always get’s my blood flowing. Although I get into a lot of fights because of my bad temper, and that’s not good… I need to calm down before I end up in prison or someone decides to fucking kill me! Haha! I’m told it’s because of the mixed Polynesian and Asian blood flowing in my veins, makes for a hot temper! I got into a knife fight awhile back at the beginning of the year and got stabbed in the face – and I almost lost an eye. So that made me stop and think and reflect on some things. But – I do take a lot of that anger and hate and channel it into my music… maybe that’s why songs like “Hammer To The Skull” seem so emotional and anger driven. Now – I have a new track “AXE TO GRIND” and that one is even more hate ridden and anger driven then “Hammer..” So as long as I have my music to channel my hate – I think I’ll be alright!!

15. Anything else you’d like to add?

Kam: Thank you for the interview, and I hope that fans will find out about us and support Bone Gnawer from it! We are hoping to get out and tour, and to bring the “Cannibal Cook-Out”to a town near you soon! In the meantime – you can help us – Spread Butchery! Buy our debut “Feast Of Flesh”, ad us on your Myspace page (www.myspace.com/bonegnawerband) and even look for us on Facebook. Tell your friends about us and look for our “Appetite for Death” split with Bonesaw coming soon around Halloween! Check our MySpace page for information how to order our CD and to also order merchandise like T-shirts!
Cheerz and Thanx again!
Kam Lee

About rocknmetalwriter

Natalie Perez of Natalie’s World is currently a Freelance Writer and Photographer contributing her time and efforts to not just her site but for various other music publications across the web. She has since gotten involved with the industry in 2008 conducted over 250+ interviews with such bands as Anthrax, Black Veil Brides, Cannibal Corpse, Megadeth, Papa Roach, and Slayer. If interested in working with her you can contact her via email at natalieperez9387@gmail.com. You can connect with her throughFacebook, Twitter, and subscribe to her channel on YouTube.

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