The metal bands who slayed in 2017

a collage of 2017 artists

Avenged Sevenfold: The Big Hitters

M. Shadows took Avenged into massive arenas and stadium tours

How was it doing that huge UJK arena tour back in January?

“The UK was amazing to me, because the last time we were there, with the exception of Download, we were doing Wembley, and only getting to do three big gigs. This time we got to do 11 and they all sold really well. That gave us a lot of confidence that we were on the right track.”

What was the Metallica tour like? You played stadiums in the US

“To be in a stadium seeing 70,000 people going crazy every night was awe- inspiring. The challenge is to try and win them over – people who didn’t know you, didn’t wanna like you, with you not really being able to fire on all cylinders, out in the middle of the daylight, with a one-hour set. Hopefully we won some people over. I guess we’ll see when we next go out.”

What have people made of the cover songs you’ve been releasing?

“With the Spanish folk song, Malagueña Salerosa, people couldn’t believe what they were hearing, and I think they respected us doing something different. Spanish radio stations picked it up! The cool factor in it was to release these songs and not promote them too much, so it’s hard to say what the real reaction was. Even though you might get a bunch of Mr. Bungle purists who were pissed about us touching their song [Retrovertigo], you also get new people who would never have even heard them before. That’s really cool.”

How was it performing at the Chester Bennington tribute show?

“It was really heavy, really emotional. Being part of the camp for the last two weeks and seeing the fans in the build-up to the show, seeing how much Chester meant to people and how much Mike Shinoda means to people… it was overwhelming. It was an honour to be there and do a service to them.”

This year was the 10th anniversary of the self-titled Avenged album. What memories does that bring back?

“I remember the polarising reaction from people off the back of [2005’s] City Of Evil to that record. I also remember self- producing – it was the first time we never had anyone looking over our shoulder. I remember doing the strings for A Little Piece Of Heaven and working with the Oingo Boingo guys, just a lot of creativity. It’s not our best-sounding album, but there were lots of crazy ideas, and I love bands with crazy ideas.”

Getting a first shot at headlining Download is huge, but is getting asked back even more of a big deal?

“Yes! It means we didn’t totally fuck it up! We look forward to giving all the fans a wild nightcap to end day one.”

You blew everyone’s minds with The Stage set on this tour – can we expect a similar vibe at Donington?

“I would say it’s a similar vibe on steroids. You gotta bring everything you got to Download.”

What does it mean to be sharing a bill with Ozzy and Guns N’ Roses?

“It’s surreal. Guns introduced me to rock’n’roll, so to be headlining with them on the world’s biggest stage is mind-boggling. Ozzy has such a deep history in the genre and every band playing owes so much to him. We’re humbled to share a stage with these legends.”

Power Trip: The Thrashers

Power Trip’s Riley Gale revitalised thrash for a new era

It feels like Nightmare Logic broke power trip on a whole new level this year

“The whole thing has been a trip. It’s been really cool that they’ve started to play the album at professional hockey games over here, and Executioner’s Tax (Swing Of The Axe) was used as the theme song for a WWE event on the NXT programme!”

Do you think you’ve shown everyone why thrash is a genre that’ll always mean something to people?

“I think we’ve reached a point where if you’re really into a subgenre of music, there’s going to be a thriving scene around. With the internet, you can be this hyper-niche person with extremely defined interests and still find a community to connect with. So with thrash, you can find plenty of bands who are taking the time to really do things right. I don’t see us ever bringing back thrash in terms of how it was in the 80s, but if we try really hard I think we can make a living off this.”

Do you think the genre still has the ability to produce heavyweight bands?

“We’re definitely in a good time to be the kind of band we are. We’re going to reach a point where these bands can’t physically play anymore, and there’ll be big voids that need filling. Guitar music isn’t going away, but it’s an interesting time where we can step up – I don’t think we’ll become a Metallica or Slayer, but maybe we can get to some stage where there’s a heavy band that are really popular again.”

What’s up next for Power Trip?

“We’re recording a single for Adult Swim, and next year we’ve got some big European tours. We’re doing 10 days of the Hatebreed tour in January, then we’re doing the Metal Hammer tour with Trivium – I just hope their crowd likes us! And we’ll probably write an album next year.”

What message do you think the world really needs for 2018?

“Stop killing each other – value human life.”

Myrkur: The Dreamer

Amalie Bruun banished her nightmares with Myrkur’s incredible second album

Mareridt seemed very therapeutic for you as an artist. Are you hoping that it’s helping people directly in that same way?

“I set free some demonic thoughts and nightmares and some music, and now it’s got a life of its own, so after that it’s not really up to me to judge what it should or shouldn’t do. I’m oddly passive about it, without being apathetic. It really did feel like an exorcism, so once that was out, I felt kind of distant from it.”

Was this album the first time you’d sung in English?

“Not in my life… ha ha, but yes, it was the first time I wrote and sang in English. I think that was mainly because sometimes, when I woke up from nightmares, in my ramblings that I write down when I’m half asleep, some of them were actually in English. So then I thought, ‘OK, let’s go with that on these particular songs’, you know? It was kinda fun. I’ll read you a sentence: [she starts in Danish, and then it morphs into this…] ‘With androgynous man wearing a huge octopus tail, tentacles like a mermaid.’ It’s crazy!”

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given this year?

“Shut up and sing?”

Ha ha! That’s an excellent answer.

“The whole quote was, ‘Shut up and sing, don’t get into trouble and don’t watch porn!’ That’s the full quote.”

Have you followed that advice?

“Yeah, I have actually.”

What’s coming up for you in 2018?

“I’ll be doing an acoustic folk tour in early 2018. Then I think also there’ll be an American tour starting in February. Then I’d like to write that dark acoustic folk album that I’ve talked about for three years.”

Would that be a Myrkur record?

“Yeah, definitely, and I’ll work with some of the same musicians I’ve worked with before. So that’s definitely in my plan. I don’t know about other people’s plans… ha ha!”

Arch Enemy: The Crusaders

Arch Enemy’s Alissa White-Gluz changed the world for the better

Arch Enemy songs make strong statements – how much has Donald Trump fired you up this year?

“I like to respect everyone’s opinion, but I’m just so disgusted with that man. Every time he opens his mouth, it’s offensive, destructive, it sets the world back a few decades in terms of social issues, political issues, the environment, women’s rights, gay rights… he’s just so anti-progress. I guess we can’t help but write about that a little bit, but there are obviously other issues worthy of writing about in music, and I think that’s why we like to keep our songs somewhat poetic.”

What responses have you had this year from talking about your veganism?

“I know my scale of impact is a lot smaller than Donald Trump or a Hollywood celebrity, but I just finished a tour in Russia where veganism is not a very popular thing, and every day fans came up to me saying, ‘I’ve been vegan for two years because of you.’ I get messages from people who say they’ve been bullied and our music gives them confidence, or really amazing fans who say our music saved their lives, so I know our music has an impact directly on people.”

You signed a deal for a solo record next year. What can we expect on that front?

“I’m hoping to be able to finish writing and recording it, but I just don’t have any time. Some of the songs are written 100% by me, while others are collaborations with friends or musicians I’d like to work with, so I’m using this album to express myself in a fun way.”

What have you learned about yourself this year?

“There’s been a lot of ups and downs. My family was stricken by a national disaster – a family member lost everything in a flood. I think I grew up more this year than in many other years. When various issues happen, especially with family, it really makes you re-evaluate what matters and doesn’t in life.”

Code Orange: The Outlaws

Code Orange’s Jami Morgan ditched all of his fucks

Did you realise how much your third album, Forever, would blow up?

“Well, I was definitely super-confident in the material. It’s difficult to predict how people will react to shit, but I don’t care as long as I put it on the headphones and it’s what I want it to be. So far, so good.”

What was it like supporting Gojira and playing those bigger venues?

“The tour was amazing. It helped us start cracking the UK and Europe. Then we came back for the festivals – that really shot it through. Gojira’s fans are cultural and are in it for the long term – those are the kind of fans we want to be playing in front of.”

You’ve had so much support from the mainstream, especially from the likes of Corey Taylor and NXT. What is it like to get that recognition?

“It’s fucking great. We’ve had the opportunity to do a lot of whack shit if we wanted to, that’d make this whole thing a lot easier and probably get us paid a lot more and make us more fans quicker, but I don’t necessarily believe that those are the kind of fans that are going to stick with you for life. Instead, we’ve taken a slower route – a more cultural route. And now, instead of running the mid-circuit for being able to start in the hardcore world – our world – we’re getting to do this other world which is so much harder to get into, because we took our time and we’ve earned the respect.”

What are your plans for 2018?

“Bands have a lot of ‘on’ years and then they have a lot of ‘off’ years. My prediction is that it’s going to stay on. And then the next thing you know, the new shit is going to be right there in front of you. We’ve got a lot of plans about that.”

Northlane: The Climbers

Marcus Bridge took Northlane in a new direction

Was it a risk to surprise-release fourth album Mesmer in March?

“It’s always risky releasing something as a secret, but first- week sales weren’t an issue for us. Our fans have stuck by us and we wanted to give it to them without any intention of asking them to pre-order a bundle with a t-shirt and a record. It’s been streamed more than 8 million times, so it’s pretty insane to see people cling to it so much.”

The lyrics cover depression, bereavement and family issues. Did recording the album make you closer as a band?

“Absolutely. We understand each other a lot better. There’s a lot of stuff guys don’t talk about. It’s hard for a lot of men to tell their friends they’re struggling.”

What was your high point of 2017?

“At Download we got to open the Main Stage, which was absolutely terrifying but such an amazing experience.”

And your low point?

“We played Hellfest and I got a bit beveraged. At the end of the night, I fell into a ditch and sprained my ankle, with five or six weeks of touring to go. I was a bit of an idiot.”

Saytr: The Survivor

Satyr’s health issues pushed him to explore new artistic depths

After commemorating Nemesis Divina’s 20th anniversary, did it feel good to return with Deep Calleth Upon Deep?

“We had other projects running alongside Deep Calleth Upon Deep: our cover album, Formative Oddities, and the time-consuming release of [2015 live album] Live At The Opera. I decided there were too many projects running alongside, so we shelved the covers album. It’s going to happen somewhere down the road, in a year or two. With Nemesis’s influence, we felt it was important to do something, and I think those other projects were helpful because they highlighted what I wanted to do more and less of. I closed some doors and opened some new ones.”

How have your recent health troubles [Satyr was diagnosed with a benign brain tumour in 2015] affected you this year?

“It’s provided a new perspective, and some sort of sense of urgency – it’s hard to tell how long I could have left doing this. I don’t anticipate the end of Satyricon anytime soon, and I’m doing rather well, but I’ve learned that you always think to yourself that as long as you feel inspired and motivated, then you can keep on doing it, but all of a sudden you realise there could be other things in life that decide for you. You’re young and strong, then shit hits the fan, and you think, ‘What just happened?’”

What lies ahead in 2018?

“Touring! Speaking with my hand on my heart, I don’t know what I’m going to do with Satyricon in the future, but Deep Calleth Upon Deep is a record I believe in so strongly that I’m willing to tour my ass off, because I know that will contribute to giving the record the position I think it deserves in musical history. On the other hand, if there should be circumstances that make me unable to continue, then I would feel much better knowing that I squeezed every last drop out – knowing we did everything we could before waving goodbye.”

In This Moment: The Hippies

In This Moment’s Maria Brink hung up her high heels

What’s it been like stepping away from 2014’s Black Widow into latest album The Ritual?

“I love it. It’s such a natural progression. I’m theatrical and I love to take on these different characters, but with this album it’s a more stripped-down, spiritual and isolated journey. I feel powerful.”

How did your onstage character change as a result?

“I got to take off the high heels. I’m free! Now I’m surrendering to the more organic me, I’m wearing a lot more long, flowing fabric where everything’s just blowing in the wind and just my bare feet.”

Do you have any projects outside the band to explore in 2018?

“I’m thinking of doing a solo album. I’m starting to write. I’m not exactly sure when I’m gonna do it, but it’ll be more of the obscure, intimate, quiet side of me. Probably the only drums in it would be tribal drums, no distorted guitars.”

Would you have to lose the theatrics, though? You would be more vulnerable without them.

“Yep, it’d be just me and a piano and one dress and candles over the whole stage.”

Does the idea of that frighten you?

“No, it sounds amazing. I’m a Sagittarius and I love new beginnings. My favourite moment in our In This Moment set is when I go out by myself to play a song on the piano. That’d be me being able to do that for a whole intimate set, and I think it would fill my soul. I pray and meditate a lot, and I believe in love and God and the universe and energy. I’m a total hippy.”

Ho99o9: The Livewires

Ho99o9 emerged from New Jersey to terrorise stages

It’s been an intense year for you. What’s been your highlight of 2017?

theOGM: “Coming out here and performing with The Dillinger Escape Plan was a great fit. Those fans went buck wild, because they appreciate really hard music. That crowd was fun, the shows were action-packed – motherfuckers diving off shit and moshing. It was the most fun and the greatest time we’ve had out here, as far as supporting another band.”

Eaddy: “I’d say dropping the album was a highlight, because we had been working on it for such a long time. And finally being able to release it and tour it in the States, and then to come to Europe and the UK was awesome. We sold out the Underworld – that was tight. Our first ticketed show in London, and it was sold out.”

What was your lowest point?

theOGM: “I would say, looking into my refrigerator and not seeing food in it, ha ha ha! That’s been quite a few times. But besides that, we’re happy and jolly.”

You came to the Metal Hammer Awards in June. What do you remember from the night?

Eaddy: “I remember Chris Jericho. Walls Of Jericho!”

theOGM: “He came out in a light-up jacket. We took a picture with him at the end of the night. We came up watching wrestling, so him being there was just like… so funny.”

And how was Glastonbury for you?

theOGM: “It was tight. I mean, we played in a Tube! It was a legit Tube!”

Eaddy: “We almost broke it.”

theOGM: “Yeah. The first thing they told us was like, [puts on a mocking voice] ‘Please don’t stand on top of the Tube, don’t climb the Tube. If you climb the tube, the show stops directly.’”

Eaddy: “I was like, ‘OK, I’ll stand on top of something else!’ I climbed the speaker and did a front flip into the crowd. That was cool…”

Creeper: The Poets

Will Gould led Creeper out of the darkness and into the spotlight

How did it feel to finally release your debut album, Eternity In Your Arms, back in March?

“I was hoping that people would hear something really creative and go, ‘Hey, I should start a band myself’, because that’s exactly how I ended up in this position with Creeper. I was really hoping for a reaction, and I feel like we got one, which is wonderful.”

Were you nervous about it?

“A lot of the time when people assume that we’re probably nervous about something, the rest of the guys are probably trying to jump into a swimming pool, or messing around somewhere on tour. Ian [Miles, guitar]bought a butterfly knife the other day and that’s been a nightmare – we’ve all got cut fingers trying to do tricks with it. But most of the time the dynamic with the band is a fun one. Even in times of stress, that’s what pulls us together.”

What was it like playing Download’s Main Stage for the first time?

“I had been going to see bands at Donington Park since Ozzfest in 2001 or 2002. I don’t think that there’s been a single metal fan or rock music fan alive that doesn’t go to those things and think, ‘Oh my god, I wonder what it’s like to be on that stage?’ To live my childhood dream was absolutely bizarre, but really, really fun.”

How are you going to top Eternity In Your Arms?

“I know full well this is it for this initial cycle. We see Creeper as a production house – like a film we’ve been making for a long time. We’d made some shorts and now we’ve made the real thing. This is the band that we are right now, but it certainly won’t be the band that we are for the next record that we make, if we were to make another record… which isn’t a certainty. Nothing is decided yet.”

Steel Panther: The Jokers

Steel Panther’s Michael Starr grabbed 2017 by the balls

You guys released Lower The Bar in January – what was the best response you had?

“We were able to get into all the major chains out here, like Amazon Prime and Walmart, which is a big deal. It’s been a very positive response: I think they’ve realised that we’re like cockroaches – we’re not going to die and we’re not going away!”

How do you feel about the state of the world this year?

“It’s all subjective: my world’s great, but when you look outside the world of Steel Panther and hot chicks, there’s a lot of shit going off. But, I love [American] football and I love America; I’m really grateful to live here. Then there’s the shit that happened in Vegas – that’s scary. I had a couple of friends there, one who got shot. One of my buddies made it through, but another bought it. The guy that made it hid in an ice machine.”

How important is it that your music offers fans a good time, in contrast to the bullshit of the outside world?

“When I go to a football game I want to be entertained – I want to escape. I hope that when people watch us play, they can enjoy a few beers, hang with buddies and have a good time. We can’t solve any global problems, but we should try to help our fans.”

What was the standout moment of your Download set this year?

“Oh man, just playing it. We can’t wait to headline, or go on before the headliner. We’re planning to be the biggest band in the world. It doesn’t have to happen overnight – in our case it’s not happening in a decade, either – but we’re getting there.”

What was it like being part of Hammer’s issue 300 celebrations?

“It’s fucking awesome – almost like being knighted in a sense. We got media knighted! I’ve got it in my bag now – I can give it to my landlord and show him I don’t have to pay rent… it should cover at least half a month!”

What’s been your low point of 2017?

“I had some sort of acid reflux attack and the flu at the same time, so I couldn’t go onstage at the Roxy. I had to drop out before the show, drive to the hospital, and get it taken care of in the emergency room. Then I couldn’t get hard for a month, but I’m alright now: I almost couldn’t pee this morning, it was straight north.”

What does 2018 hold for Steel Panther?

“We’re hoping to get our TV show up and running. It’s really funny; we have a lot of great actors in it. It’ll show what happens at a Steel Panther show and backstage. A really big ambition for me is to try and get a star on the Walk Of Fame, and part of the show is us trying to do that, but it’s fucking impossible. It’s interesting to see the inner workings of Hollywood – a metal band that are [in their eyes] completely outdated, trying to achieve that. But if you’re into metal, you know Steel Panther. Even if you don’t like us, you know us…”

Kreator: The Veterans

Kreator’s Mille Petrozza keeps pushing the legends forwards

Having headlined the Forum in London and made such an impact at Bloodstock, is this the biggest Kreator have ever been in the uk?

“I think our fans really love our new record, Gods Of Violence, and of course we want to give something back, so we wanted this huge production. And now we’re in a position to have this huge creepy, horror production, so it’s really cool… but are we bigger than ever? I don’t know, but I do know I think we can get bigger.”

You really killed it at Bloodstock in august. How was it for you?

“I think Bloodstock festival is a perfect example of people who really know their metal – they know their new bands and they respect their older bands. It’s an old-school festival with a modern twist,and the people working behind the scenes are really passionate. It’s one of my favourite festivals – it’s a metal attitude rather than an old-school attitude. It’s metal in its purest form, made for fans by fans – it’s like a family. Hopefully we can come back and headline with an even bigger show!”

Are you a fan of metal’s class of 2017?

“So many great bands are coming out. My two favourite albums that came out this year are by Zeal & Ardor and Ho99o9. There are so many fresh ideas in metal, still – this is a genre where the story hasn’t been written yet. It’s great to see a new style come out every year.”

Why do you think thrash metal is still going strong, too?

“Thrash is an attitude. The younger bands have the spirit of thrash – I’m not such a big fan of separating the genres, it’s all metal, but the key is that as you get older as a band you have to keep that spirit. Keep your eyes and ears open for new music, stay true to your passion.”

Perturbator: The Retrofuturists

Perturbator mastermind James Kent made a new model of synthwave

How has the year been for you?

“It’s been pretty exhausting – a lot of stuff happened for Perturbator. The American tour was particularly tiring, but still really interesting and awesome. I put out my latest EP, New Model, which is a new chapter for this project. We have some music videos and some really cool stuff coming out from it soon. And, on a personal level, I just got married. But I’m gonna end the year by taking some time off.”

Have you noticed more 80s influence creeping into popular culture in 2017?

“I see a lot of 80s-inspired films and series. The new Thor film has a real 80s aesthetic. There’s also the new Stranger Things. But I take some distance from this; I’m really not a fan of using this as a gimmick. I think a film that used it very well was the new Blade Runner movie. But even in music, you can see these synths being put into everything.”

It’s been a tough year, politically – do you think we’re heading for a utopia or a dystopia?

“Oh, definitely a dystopia! Definitely, definitely, definitely! I think we are heading further and further away from a utopia every day. Honestly.”

What are you planning next for Perturbator?

“I will probably try and release something new next year, and also I have given myself a challenge to work with some bands that I really admire and enjoy. I have a remix that I’m currently working on for Grave Pleasures; their Motherblood album is one of my favourite albums of the year.”

Who’s the most famous person you met this year?

“So far, it’s been Phil Anselmo, but I think very soon it’s going to be John Carpenter, because I’ve just signed something to work on one of his films. Which is just so fucking cool!”

Zeal & Ardor: The Innovator

Zeal & Ardor’s Manuel Gagneux invented a new strain of extreme metal

You played your first-ever shows as a band this year – what was your standout moment?

“At Roadburn the power cut out – bear in mind that was our third gig ever – and people started singing our songs to us with deafening loudness. That was incredible.”

How different was it to go from headlining your own show in London to opening for Prophets Of Rage in Europe?

“That was bizarre. It doesn’t even compare – you just notice that everything is up to luck in the music world, and people putting in a good word for you. It was an entirely different experience; it showed us that there’s a world of experience that we lack, that we can now learn from.”

Did you hang out with any of the guys?

“Actually, we hung out with Tom Morello when we opened for them in Berlin. We went out drinking and had a great raucous time – we went to this weird little leftist bar in Berlin and got sufficiently wasted. That’s about as much as I can share!”

What’s the most 2017 thing you’ve seen in 2017?

“I have to go with fidget spinners. I’m so certain that these things will never appear again – they’re just isolated to this year and will die here.”

What’s next for you?

“Right now I’m doing civil service, which is something we Swiss people have to do and be part of the system. You can be as willy-nilly and metal as you want, but if the state says you have to look after old people, that’s what you have to do. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it altruism, but I’m not fighting it, either. So I’ll do this until the end of the year, gigging a little bit, and then it’s time to record the new album…”

Ocean Grove: The Oddballs

Ocean Grove’s Luke Holmes took on the world. The Odd World…

What’s been your high point of 2017?

“Releasing your debut album [The Rhapsody Tapes] is something that only comes around once, so that was a massive highlight. But the fact we’ve been able to come to Europe and come to England to play – on a more personal level, that was the highlight of the year.”

And your low point?

“The recording process. We did it all by ourselves, and we definitely had times where we were over-thinking it, wondering how the music we were making was going to be perceived. Wondering whether we’d be happy with it ourselves, and whether we’d sapped all of our creative juices. But what came from all that was the high point: putting out the album and being able to tour the world.”

Do you think people understand what ‘Odd World’ is yet?

“Once the music comes out, it speaks for itself. It’s quite an ambiguous thing in its definition, but people are definitely coming around to it. And I think the reception of the record is a sign that people are reacting positively to what we’re about.”

For the uninitiated: Can you briefly explain it again?

“What it really is, is our idea of what we think a diverse record is. It brings all different tastes, genres, and backgrounds into the one whole. It’s more of an attitude than anything!”

What’s your biggest ambition for 2018?

“We came pretty close to being on a big movie soundtrack – I can’t say which one – and that’s what I really want. A Number One album, and to get our music into a movie. We want to take our music to places that a lot of heavy bands haven’t been able to before. Getting to Number Five with our debut album, as a heavy band, hasn’t really been done before. And that’s what we’re about. But as long as I get to travel the world, I’ll be happy!”

While She Sleeps: The Independents

While She Sleeps went DIY and Loz Taylor rediscovered his voice

What has been your high point of 2017?

“Managing to get two albums out back to back. I think people are aware of the problems I have had with my voice, and after having surgery on it in between This Is The Six [2012] and Brainwashed [2015], I don’t feel like maybe we’ve been given quite the crack of the whip that we should have done. So to have been able to carry on like a proper band has really been a huge relief.”

How risky was it for you to crowdfund You Are We?

“Well, you might end up with no one buying your product and then you feel a bit stupid. But, for us, it was something that made sense. We’re not these really militant punks, but there has always been a very strong DIY ethic to our band. We were confident that our fans would buy into what we were doing, and they did.”

Were you surprised at the success of the video for Silence Speaks?

“I don’t want to sound arrogant or anything, but no, because we really believed in the song, and we had Mat’s [Welsh, guitar] brother working on it, who’s an absolute genius when it comes to making videos. And we had Oli [Sykes] in there as well. It just felt like everyone was really working together at a really high level.”

Presumably you and Oli are back on good terms now?

“Yeah, it’s been no secret that there was some pretty bad blood between us before, but it was at Tom Searle’s wake that we saw all of these people from down the years. And it’s a cliché, but you start to think that life’s too short. You look around and you realise how far our scene has come, and how connected you are to these people, so we decided to make peace with it, and having Oli on the record just made sense to show that.”

Motionless In White: The Go-Getters

Chris Motionless took Motionless In White off the graveyard shift

What can we expect when you bring the Graveyard Shift tour to the UK in January?

“We feel the UK has always gotten the short end of the stick on the Motionless show front. There’s always a special feel over there, so with these shows it’s time to pull that fucking trigger. Whatever fits on that fucking stage, every bit of production we can get on – that’s what we’re gonna do. We’re gonna give the UK fans the real show that they’ve been waiting for. It’s game time.”

What have been your high and low points of 2017?

“The highs have been Download and working all year to get to this moment – the official Graveyard Shift headlining tour. We’ve only ever done two-and-a-half headliners out of 11 years of touring, so to have it at this level – we call it putting on an arena show in a club – is pretty miraculous to me. As far as the lows go, worrying about my dad’s health following his heart attack – thankfully it’s improving all the time – and when we had to delay the album release. I was just so upset and felt helpless watching the fans’ reactions and not being able to offer an explanation for it.”

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given this year?

“My dad’s always the number one guy that tries to keep me motivated – he’s always saying, ‘Get out there and rock ’em hard!’ – he’s a total proud dad.”

What’s your goal for next year?

“To start working on the new album a lot earlier – I don’t want to put ourselves in another position where we have to keep pushing the release back. I want to get a headstart on it and learn from the experience with the last one.”

2017: Metal Hammer's big review

Metal Hammer name Mastodon’s Emperor Of Sand best album of 2017