Australia’s high profile band LORD talk about 2013, Digital Lies, successful memories through the years, and a taste of what to expect in 2014.
By Mandy Craig
Australian high profile melodic metal band LORD have had a very busy and rewarding year, with their recent release Digital Lies being well received and recognised by many.
LORD being a Sydney based band, who were originally known as Dungeon have had awesome experiences, performing with big names such as Megadeth, Queensryche, Saxon, and Doro – just to name a few, also having the chance to work with guitarist Craig Goldy from Dio on their most recognized third album Set in Stone.
Being their fourth album, Digital Lies has drawn a lot of attention, making it into many top 15 lists as one of the most listened Australian metal albums for 2013!
The album having such an enormous sound, the theme being futuristic, with the title track that has Frankenstein and Cyborg elements, there is no surprise that fans have loved listening to Digital Lies, it is an album that keeps you hooked on each track!
Talking to lead vocalist Lord Tim and Bassist Andy Dowling, they revealed their most epic moments of 2013 with their international tour and the release of Digital Lies; also the success they have had with the album, and their ground-breaking moments since being re-named as LORD in 2005.
Q: Lord, 2013 has definitely been a big year for you guys with your fourth album ‘Digital Lies’ being released in February and your overseas tour in September. What have you found most exhilarating this year and why?
AD: The reaction to the new album has been the biggest thing for us this year. It was a really hard album for us to put together and get out and we also weren’t sure whether or not people’s expectations would align themselves with our new material. Thankfully the response has been overwhelmingly good, not only in Australia but all over the world. The album has also sold better in its first year than any LORD or Dungeon album since Demolition, which is a huge achievement for us.
Q: Your overseas tour included Malaysia, Singapore and Japan. What was it like to perform live to your fans in these countries?
AD: It was our first time in South East Asia and the reaction was fantastic. Singapore and Malaysia are absolutely hungry for heavy music and completely embraced what we do and made us feel very welcome. Japan as always was great for us, it was our fifth time over there as a band and it continues to be one of our favourite places to play in the world. The fans there are 110% dedicated and passionate about our music. You simply wont find that dedication anywhere else in the world and we’re truly humbled to experience it.
Q: Any awesome and/or funny moments while touring?
AD: Well, we all like a bit of a drink so there’s always some interesting times on tour. From drinking in a mosquito infested scrub-land near a bunch of Malaysian police (where its illegal) in Johor, dining at a heavy metal cafe in Singapore, trying to ensure our gear doesn’t get stolen whilst playing in Kuala Lumpur, to having quiet dinner in Hiroshima which ended up being a booze infested celebration that resulted in our fill-in drummer spewing his guts up all over town the next day. It’s never boring on tour and we always have a blast!
Q: What was the fans’ reaction to your music overseas, what was it like to meet international fans?
AD: Apart from general enthusiasm for fans in places that normally don’t get a lot of metal such as Singapore and Malaysia, most fans are pretty much the same. Everyone is super cool, knowledgeable of what we do (which is always flattering) and dedicated to what we do. While there may be a language barrier in some places, everyone reacts and behaves the same way in the midst of a live show and we love it.
Q: Your album ‘Digital Lies’ has an awesome futuristic vibe, how would you consider this installment different to yours past albums?
LT: We’ve always flirted with a lot of different styles over the years, from commercial rock right up to extreme metal, and we have had synth elements in the past but I think this is the first time we’ve featured them so prominently. A lot of the album was approached from the point of view of the keyboards this time rather than guitar, so that really changed the dynamic of the writing process and how the guitars ended up being arranged. It still absolutely sounds like a LORD album but doing it this way definitely gave it its own distinct flavour amongst our back catalogue.
Q: The title track, ‘Digital Lies’ talks about the creation of cyborgs with a Frankenstein theme. Would you say this track helped shape the overall meaning to the album?
LT: Definitely. That wasn’t the first synth heavy song written for the album (it was “Walk Away”) but I think once the sequenced synth parts went down on that song and it all came together, it really sort of set a precedent between this song, “Walk Away” and a couple of other ideas I was noodling with, and that sort of vibe just sort of permeated through the rest of the album.
Q: The overall sound to your album ‘Digital Lies’ is epic and very powerful, each song gives the feel of being in an arena, fans head banging to your music. What did you love the most about creating and producing this album?
LT: Honestly? Finishing it! (Laughs) This was without a doubt one of the most painful recording experiences of my life. It just seemed to be difficult at every step from creation to mastering and just seemed to go on and on and on. By the time we finished it, I was absolutely fed up with it all and the band in general! But now in hindsight, now that I’ve put some distance between my life now and those horrible memories, I listen back to this thing and I’m really proud of it. I think for the style we were going for with this album, we really nailed the production and there’s some really good songwriting on there too. But believe me when I say I never want to record like this ever again; you’ll find me hanging lifeless from the ceiling fan before it’s over! (Laughs)
Q: Digital Lies has been listed as number two on the Top fifteen Australian Metal Albums of 2013 by Metal Obsession, and also number six on Triple M Distortion, what was your first reaction to this?
AD: Very flattered. It’s nice to be acknowledged by the local industry here and also by our peers. There’s always a paranoia that an album you release at the start of the year will be forgotten by years end when everyone is putting together their ‘best of’ lists, but we’ve been very honoured to get some great mentions with hopefully more to come!
Q: In 2009, with your ‘definitive’ third album Set in Stone you had special guests working on your album with you, such as Craig Goldy; guitarist from Dio, Glen Drover – ex guitarist from Megadeth, and many others. What was it like to have these people working on the production of this album with you?
LT: Over the years of doing what we do, we’ve had the absolutely amazing fortune of working with some of the best musicians in the world, some of whom are big heroes of ours too. It blew us away that they agreed to do guest parts on the album first of all, let alone the incredible performances they did. I think Set In Stone was definitely a landmark album for us, where we really found our feet with both songwriting and production, and it really captured the true essence of what we’re all about, so to have all of those great players come on board and be a part of it just made it something extra special.
Q: You guys have also toured alongside bands, Saxon, Queensryche, Nightwish, Jaded Heart and Doro – nationally and internationally since 2005. What was that experience like?
AD: Every experience has been completely different. Some bands we’ve formed great relationships with and kept in touch with while others we simply play the shows and go on our separate ways. It’s always great to share the stage with some of our idols and it’s a good opportunity to perform in front of people who normally wouldn’t come out to see an Australian headline band. We’ve been lucky to pick up a lot of new fans over the years from these bands and many others.
Q: Any Upcoming gigs for your fans to know about?
AD: We are planning to continue touring in the new year, however at this stage we’re working behind the scenes on other band related matters before we announce any shows. We’re looking at heading overseas again if it all falls into place, and of course do another Australian tour hitting all of the major cities. We’re itching to get back out there!
Q: What do you have in store for 2014? Can we expect a fifth album and an expansion of international tours?
LT: A new full LORD album is unlikely for 2014, unfortunately. However, don’t think that we’re going to be quiet on the release front we have a lot of pretty awesome things planned for this year, and no I won’t tell you what! (Laughs) Tour wise, yep we’re definitely getting back out there again this year and more international touring is being locked in.
Q: Last question; since being renamed as LORD in 2005, what have been the most ground breaking moments for you all as a band?
AD: Our international touring has been a big thing for us as well as seeing our music get discussed and aired in mainstream media, but also just simply seeing the band grow each year, whether it be personally and musically within our ranks or seeing our fan base increasingly get bigger as each year rolls on. For me, the smallest things make the biggest impact and as long as we continue to move forward, then we’ll continue to have many more groundbreaking moments. The future is very bright and I for one am quite excited.
LT: There have been a few for me; changing over to LORD from being known as Dungeon for sixteen years was really a big thing. We did that change probably at the height of Dungeon’s popularity, just after fairly extensive international tour with Megadeth, so it was a pretty big step. Those final shows we did as Dungeon and first year as LORD was pretty magical. As a huge Queensryche fan, touring with those guys was pretty amazing for me, and the fact that it happened within months of LORD coming into existence was just surreal! Lots of other great moments but I think the other thing I can really say is a stand-out is the amazing reviews we’ve gotten for “Digital Lies” – after doing this for so long, to have this as our best received and best selling album is just astounding. I’m incredibly proud.
Want to know more about LORD? Check them out on the following links:
“We’ll reach for the morning sky, tomorrow is yours and mine” – Quote from the title track ‘Digital Lies’
Also, don’t forget to watch LORD’s awesome video for Because We Can!!
Copyright © Music Mayhem with Mandy 2013