Questions for band members


Your skin is mine.
Idea stolen from the Finntroll boards - if anyone has questions for us goblins, ask away. I'll relay the answers from anyone not registered (or I'll make them register :)). For clarification, here's the lineup:

  • Nicholas Von Doom: co-founder, songwriter, all keyboards on all the recordings, lyrics, vocals. (Most of the goofy vocal skits are his as well)
  • Tim "Timbus" Lyakhovetskiy(me): co-founder, songwriter, all guitars except where noted.
  • Ashleigh "Mork" Carracino: live keyboards. Occasional awesome stick figure art.
  • Alex "Metalex" Alereza: live guitars (he'll be on the new album as well)
  • Austin "Rape" Nickel: bass.
  • Alex "Lord Duddy" Duddy: live vocals (he did some stuff for Goblin Island and he'll be on bits of the new album as well). However, he's most likely not going to be in the band for the long term because his other band is getting more famous. (Not kidding).
  • Eddie "Sir Edwin the Swift" Trager: live drums. (He's new!)

Ask away, minions.
Ok i have 2 questions.

1: This is for any of the guitarists. How do you have you're guitar's/amps set up to make them sound so awsome? :p (like the pre & post gain, and the equalization)

2: This question is for Alex Duddy. Wats ur other band?

1: My primary guitar, for live and recordings is a BC Rich 7-string Warlock with an EMG-707 in the bridge. Alex's is a 7-string Jackson (not sure what kind, but pretty low end), stock pickups. For the recordings, we use my Line 6 POD Xt Pro. My live and recording setup is actually the same, it's on the Spinal Puppet amp preset (kind of like a tighter sounding Mesa Dual Rec or an ENGL Powerball). The gain is turned a little over half way and it's a very mid-heavy tone. The trick to getting good tone is not to overdo it. Most modern amps let you turn the gain way past reasonable levels, and that generally isn't what you want. Also, I'm not a big fan of scooped tones as they tend to get lost in a mix.

Anyway, my live setup is the aforementioned POD Xt into a Mesa Boogie Stereo Simul-class 2:90 power amp (all tube). This goes into a really ratty beat up 4x12 cab that I put together myself, top two speakers are Mesa black shadows, bottom two are Legion sound...not sure what kind. My power amp generally has the presence set to about 75% to get the higher harmonics out, and the POD once again is on Spinal Puppet.

Alex's live setup is a Peavey 6505 (basically a 5150) into a low-end Marshall cab. He usually plays the rhythm stuff on the lead tone, and leads on the rhythm, because the lead tone has more crunch and rhythm is clearer. Once again, gain set to about 6, presence about 9, resonance about 8, EQ's almost at 0, with the bass being a little lower and the mids being a little higher.

2: I'll answer this one for Alex. He plays drums for a band called Amelie out of Los Angeles. Their myspace is here. Also, me and Alex are the co-founders of Inquest, a death metal project you can find here. We're on an extended hiatus, though it looks like we might get together for a show on Halloween. Also, Alex used to play drums for Horse the Band, Admiral Angry, Love Thyne, and Midnite Overture, as well as doing vocals for a band called Avarice.


I guess I have another for all of the vocalists/growlers:
Where did you learn the proper technique for growling and such? I mean, I've been trying to distort my vocals using the thing where you conjure it up from the back most inner part of your throat, and it sounds like someone's dying, but it doesn't trash my chords. Any tips?
For me, I just started growling along to my favorite bands in the car. No lessons or technique or anything, just a lot of practice. You gotta be really careful when you start out, and be prepared to lose your voice a few times. I'd say the best advice I got was try different things until you find something that hurts the least and then embrace that. Voices are different, some are more conducive to growls than others. If you're trying to do high screeches and it hurts, but then you do really low growls and it feels fine, you're better off developing your lows and leaving your highs alone until your voice is stronger. It took Nicky and me about 2-3 years to develop our growls to a decent level, and another year to start sounding good.

EDIT: Also, as soon as you're decent, join a band that practices often. Doing it for long stretches will expose your problems and will help build breath control. Also, learn to use a mic well, growling without one will only get you so far. And never use effects.

the Alex playing for you guys is the same one that used to be in HORSE?

fucking crazy yo, i love both bands.

this one is for Tim:

When it was just you and Nick on Goblin Island, how did you record your guitars? vocals? and im assumign you used drum looping, if so, what did you use (software, machine) and what model/program/etc.?

thanks. you guys are my fave.
I have something to ask about growling. I've been just messing around with growling/shrieking for a few months, but after about 15-25 minutes, I always get a burning sensation in my throat. It gets to the point where it forces me to stop because it interrupts anything I try to growl. Did you have this problem and if you did, how long did it take you to build up a tolerance to it?