How Swiss metallers Invoker are smashing the stigma around depression

a press shot of Invoker

Metal and hardcore have often been weighed down by bullshit macho posturing and the idea that displaying emotion or opening up is for “pussies”. With depression and mental health such an ongoing issue that still isn’t getting addressed enough, it’s a virtue that so many artists in recent years have worked to smash that aforementioned, silly stereotype – and one such band doing so right now are Switzerland’s Invoker.

“Our lyrics are about emotional problems, anxiety and depression,” explains vocalist David. “They’re based on our own experiences or things that happen to our near surroundings. Matters of depression and anxiety are serious problems that should not be treated lightly and people should listen to their close ones and try to help as much as possible. By writing music about it, we hope to help people to lose the fear of talking about it.”

It’s an admirable modus operandi that many within and outside of our scene could do with adopting. But if you think embracing vulnerability and dealing with emotional and potentially delicate material blunts Invoker’s musical output, you’re way off. New album Four Wall Nightmare is a bludgeoning maelstrom of metallic riffs, hardcore fury and rumbling breakdowns with the occasional sniffs of post-rock and extreme metal, all underpinned with a sense of melody that could see the five-piece as comfortably at home supporting Every Time I Die as Killswitch Engage. As David explains, their fertile homeland made it easy to gain the influence and the tools to make something special…

“The scene in Switzerland isn’t very big – you could say that you can count the whole country as one local scene!” he laughs. “At the time we started to play music with Invoker, the country was dominated by metalcore bands. Swiss Bands like Cataract and Breakdown Of Sanity were the reason so many young people started their own band and more and more shows got organised. Because of all the new bands around, it all felt fresh, and a lot of great ideas came to life. It was a good time to start a band!”

Describing an Invoker show as “emotional, sincere and full of energy”, David and the guys are unsurprisingly keen to take their message of openness and positivity on the road and around the world as quickly as possible.

“We like to show people what our songs are about and try to put as much effort into it as possible,” he adds. “And we like to get in touch with the people! Nothing feels better onstage then having the people scream along or having as many stagedives as possible!” You heard the man.

Four Wall Nightmare is out now