Spectral Birth (AU) Interview [16.07.2017]

Let’s get to it. How did you get into heavy metal? 
I got into metal by being fascinated with Kiss back when I was 5 years old. That developed into a love for heavy 70’s bands like Sabbath, Purple, Ted Nugent, Priest, UFO, Budgie. 

Did you study music formally at a young age or were you more of a freestyle and autocratic musician? 
I did take guitar lessons when I was 12, but basically taught myself by listening to these bands and replicating their styles and techniques on guitar. Dave learnt drums at age 15 and picked it up very quickly. 

What was the underground scene like during the 86-94 era in Melbourne? I’m sure you have many fond memories however name one that remains important to you. 
The scene in Melbourne was healthy but very much underground in the 80s/90s. My favourite memory was going to the Nunawading Skate Ranch where thrash gigs were held.


What influenced you initially to form Incubus? 
Dave and I formed Incubus out of a love for European thrash metal, a genre that other Melbourne bands didn't seem to be adopting (styles like Kreator, Destruction, Sodom, Bathory, etc). 

What was the reasoning behind the name change to Spectral Birth? 
We changed our name to Spectral Birth after we heard of a band in the US called Incubus. 

Tell the readers something they may not know about the bands you were in after all these years… 
We haven't been in any other bands since Spectral Birth ended in 1994. Just a few various solo projects. 

Did you have a lot of interest from overseas or was it primarily within Australia? 
There was surprisingly a lot of interest in us from overseas, I guess because our style of thrash was more aligned with the Euro style. We loved the US/Canadian bands too, of course (Sacrifice, Razor, Holy Moses, etc). 

Were there ever any plans to release an album? 
We always wanted to produce an album, it was a dream of ours, but we just couldn't find the right deal at the time. 

Several years ago, Ryan/ex-Gospel of the Horns tracked you down to give you a copy of the LP of your demos which was released by Keith from Black Ace Records of Deströyer 666. This was released in 2004. Are you still surprised at the impact your bands have on supporters 30 years on? 
We were thrilled and surprised that the LP got released on Black Ace in 2004. It was a good release, there have been talks since of getting Raze on CD, so hopefully one day.

When you look back at the mark you left on the Australian metal underground how do you feel about it? 
We are very proud about the contribution Spectral Birth made to the scene back in the day. As I said we seemed to fill a gap in the scene that needed filling. Sure, we weren't super-well known, but people still listen to our music today, the demos were of good quality, so that's a good thing I guess. 

For many heavy metal is an outlet. It’s a cathartic release or a primal expression of how they feel. Have you replaced this with something else in your life? 
Since leaving Spectral Birth, I became a Christian and that has steered my life in a big way since. Dave and I are still great mates and we still get together and jam from time to time and relive the good ol' days. 

Final words are yours Loz... 
Thrash ‘til death!