Wyrmhaven: An Interview

Wyrmhaven are a band from Arizona.

Had a chance to chat with the band about influences, beginnings, and the pros and cons of genre in heavy music. Also made the connection between Hell and Arizona in terms of climate... which might have something to do with the quality of metal coming out of the Southwest.

Weirding: So the short guitar solo and the following twin harmonized section in ‘Hysteric’ is a thing of beauty. Go guitar-hero-worship on me and talk to me about the guitarists who've helped define guitar for you.

Wyrmhaven: Both Nick and Ryan have two totally different styles. We both love metal of course, but view it differently. 

Ryan loves that branch of guitar playing from Zakk Wylde to Jeff Loomis. His technicality mixed with emotion is flawless. 

Nick is more of a riff and heavy player — loves Jesper Stromblad, Keith Merrow. 

Weirding: It’s a great blend.

Wyrmhaven: Truly think being diverse and each guitar player doing what they are best at works well.

Weirding: Arizona is something of a death metal hotspot. What's going on?

Wyrmhaven: We think Arizona has always had a big heavy music following. Everything from The Bled, Job for a Cowboy, and of course the mighty Gatecreeper.

It's just hot as all hell — and riffs just keep on coming here. 

Weirding: I guess hell-hot weather should produce hellish music.

Wyrmhaven: Well, there's nothing in the water, cause there is none. 

Weirding: You make some great production choices, like around the 2:30 mark in ‘Enough’ where the drum is isolated. It's really that thing where the production perfectly complements the songwriting and performance. Could you tell me what the recording and mixing experience looks like for you all.

Wyrmhaven: We love heavy music and we all believe that it shouldn't have to be classified — or have to have the same formula over and over. 

Why not mix a few styles? Why not add elements that you love from other genres and make something unique? Just adds a different dimension to the song. Paints a different story.

And our producer and engineer Ty Engle from Engle Studios in Tucson absolutely crushes.

Weirding: So, I like that you are into mixing elements and genres within tracks. It raises a question: Do you think that the metal community — both bands and fans — have become almost too reliant on genre? Like, where we let our expectations of what occurs within a genre get in the way of letting the music grow and evolve?

Wyrmhaven: That's a really good question. We have gotten a few messages that we are poser metal because we aren't true death metal — or because we mix a few things here and there. We have also gotten a lot of praise because we did mix what we love about metal and heavy music. 

I think some fans are definitely reliant on genres. And some bands have a formula they stick with. Nothing wrong with that, but sometimes they won't give a band an opportunity because they have another element involved. 

Granted, there are formulas that work — and work very very well. Some bands are the absolute monsters of their genres for a reason. We just want to make something heavy, mean, epic, and modern — while still paying homage to all the greats before us. We are still evolving as a band — still learning. And this new release we are working on, well hopefully everyone can see that. 

But music doesn't have to be just one specific thing. It's a beautiful form of art. And for our band, well luckily we all found each other, and then for a brief moment in time we made some.

Weirding: So regarding the band members finding each other — how did you all come together?

Wyrmhaven: We all have been friends for a long time. We all played with each other's bands years prior, nothing ever that was serious. We all know our our way around our instruments — some more than others of course. But we were just friends that wanted to re-connect and write some music together after years being apart, if you will. 

Everything just fell into place after that. Then we found Alex on vocals, and we just knew. It was the perfect storm if you will.

Weirding: Lastly, I wanted to mention that I really like your logo and the artwork for Delirium — especially the colors. Tell me about how the cover art came together.

Wyrmhaven: Nick was looking for logo ideas and he found Arte del Diablo — on a tutorial on logos and lettering. So, they got together and designed it. 

The artwork was done by artist Zach Whitley. He has done work for Ghost and Darkness and a few other brands as well. Nick had an idea about having it look simple and open to interpretation. Wanted it to look cavernous, dark, and with some type of void pulling down a silhouette of a person. 

We wanted it to look like if you hold it up the person is being pulled down, but if you flip it the person is being pulled up. 

You will definitely see a running theme with the void in the future.


About

Wyrmhaven are an Arizona based quintet, who are branching out with their own crushing interpretation of doom-infused melodic death metal.

Bandcamp: https://wyrmhaven.bandcamp.com/releases

Twitter: @WyrmhavenAZ

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wyrmhaven_official

Merch: https://wyrmhaven.bigcartel.com/products


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