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 Seasons of the Wolf Interview - 3/19/2007

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Jedi Master of Metal
Jedi Master of Metal

Zodiac : Aries Metal Reputation : 89
Join date : 2012-01-06
Location : Walker Louisiana

PostSeasons of the Wolf Interview - 3/19/2007

Seasons of the Wolf Interview


Bobby Weaver

1.First, let me thank you guys for doing the interview! How long has SOTW been around as a band and what led to the formation?

**Skully – This October 2007 will start our 20th year together. Of course the first few years as a band we were just working out the rough spots and doing a lot of practicing and writing. Dennis and I had previously been in a band called Equinox in the mid 80’s. Once my younger brother graduated from high school he joined us to from SOTW. We went through a few bassists and drummers for those first few years. We did record a couple of Tampa Bay cassette only releases in 90 and 91. Then in 1994 we got our first real pro recording line-up and put together the first real SOTW release. And that still took us a couple years to get it released in late 1996. We followed up quickly with a second release titled “Lost In Hell” for 1999. Then in 2002 we released our third titled “Nocturnal Revelation”.

2.As a band, and individually, what are your influences and how did everything culminate in what is now SOTW?

**Skully - Dennis, and my brother Wes both listened to a lot of the same music that influenced me. So, it came together real natural for us to work together and enjoy drawing from those influences to make the SOTW sound. Black Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult, Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Utopia, Steppenwolf, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Thin Lizzy and Uriah Heep mixed with a lot of horror / Sci-fi soundtrack influence guided us to our sound. Each of us have our individual input and unique SOTW trade mark sound. It has developed over years and became very satisfying to us. But, we like to experiment with some new things.

3.I really enjoy the songwriting and the lyrical content of your music, who is the major songwriter of the band and how do the songs come together when writing a new song?

**Skully – My brother Wes writes a good portion of the lyrics. But, he and I also write together. I usually come up with a title and subject matter and then he takes it away. Dennis also pitches in lyrics. The main music riff either comes from a keyboard part that Dennis comes up with or it may start with a guitar riff I’m working on. Then it falls together however. Sometimes Dennis and Wes write the lyrics. Sometimes Dennis and I write lyrics. I also have a bass guitar handy and sometimes end up writing a riff for a song from the bass.

It really works a lot of different ways for us. No matter what instrument it comes from, once we get a cool riff and a skeleton structure we take off with it.

We never have any problems with where or who it comes from. We just get it done and if we like it we keep it.

4.Are you guys planning on touring soon, and if so, will Las Vegas be one of the stops?

**Skully – We would love to do more extensive touring. Hopefully soon we will have the leverage to do more. We have played a good portion of Florida, and we have traveled into a few other states. Touring is more expensive these days than ever so money is definitely an issue. We will play anywhere on earth as long as the expenses are paid. Ya know….Travel, logging, food. Las Vegas is definitely high on our priority list of places to play because we have a good chunk of support there on our mailing list. And it is growing.

5.What is your most memorable show, and why?

** Skully – Actually more than one show. I’d say the best organized shows we have done were at the State Theatre in St. Petersburg FL, and in Pinellas Park FL at a club called Dracula’s. We got to do things our way with the full SOTW show at those places. And we got a lot of support from fans. We would play 90 minute shows. Sometimes even 2 hour shows. The SOTW fans really liked that and it was good testing ground for all our original material on those first 3 albums. We played at Dracula’s about 25 times. We became a local favorite there.

Last year we played up in Ithaca NY at a place called “The Haunt”. We really liked that place and can’t wait to go back there. We have a good build up of fans in NY state right now waiting for us. We can’t wait to get back up there and hit all the major cities.

6.What is your worst show and why?

**Skully – It has been a few years back we played a local hometown gig and the sound engineer and production sucked really badly. Out of respect I will not mention names. There was no cooperation at all. And we were paying them to do the job. They made things very difficult for us to be able to give the fans a good show. We have had some other bad times like that but nothing quite as crappy as that one gig.

Hahaha – We do not think that one can be topped. When it comes to live shows these days we have learned to not expect much from anyone. That way we are not so disappointed. Hahaha! But, even so, – we still get disappointed. haha - There seems to be an increasing amount of people in the club scene that just don’t know what the hell they are doing. OR they think they know everything and are so close minded they can not govern their ego to work in a professional manner. It makes it real hard for anyone with a unique fresh idea towards a “SHOW”

7.If you could go on tour with any other band or bands, who would it be and why?

** Skuly – Right now I think we would be a great opener for several of the longtime established classic metal bands. That is a long list. Ones that come to mind are Dio, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Metal Church, and so on. We got to open for Blue Oyster Cult once and it was very cool. We would do that again. Hahaha Right now getting over to Europe is high on our priority list too. There are lots of bands over there that we would work well with.

8.Is SOTW coming out with a new album, and if so, can you give us any details such as track listings, release date, etc?

**Skully – Yes Indeed! May 31st we will finally release our 4th album which is titled “Once In A Blue Moon” The title fits in so many ways and we also planned it right in time for the actual “blue moon”. It is in the final tweaking stage right now and the artwork layout coming together.

We hired model Tara Daynes from the UK to do photos for the front and back cover concept on this album. She did an excellent job as a sort of SOTW mascot. Our gothic metal queen babe unleashing “The Wolves” upon the world! And that will help create more interest for SOTW in the UK, and help Tara with more exposure as well.

An interesting networking type situation comes from it.

Track list as follows – 11 titles - Wings Of Doom, Snaggletooth, Nikhedonia, Battle Scars, In The Shadows, Behind The Eyes Of Evil, The Reaper, Ghost Woman, Alien Landscapes, The Edge Of Time, and Peace On Earth.

9.I’ve watched the DVD and damn do you guys put on a show! Are there any pre-show rituals or anything that happens prior to getting onstage?

**Skully – A bit of rest is the ritual for now because so much work goes into making sure the show is set up right. At this point we don’t have stage hands helping us. When we do get a opportunity for a larger show we hire a couple people to help but, still end up doing a lot of the work ourselves.

Especially if we get the leverage to do things the way we need and want them done. We like to use fog machines, special effects lighting, and things such as that. Our full show props consist of an octagon drum riser that goes together in 3 sections with silver studded black leather wrapped around it. And we have back-line risers with the same black leather. Then a few of our own rain lights positioned just right and smoke machines that shoot our from under the risers. Floor lighting for special effect, and a couple of small strobes and such for certain songs. To get a show at a club “our way” it requires co-operation. That is if you really expect to see SOTW with all the bells and whistles.

We have 3 different size backdrops for venues. Small, medium, and large.

10.What bands have you toured with in the past?

**Skully – No tours with any other bands yet. Over the years we have worked individual shows with a couple hundred bands though. Some of them we have worked with again on a few shows. Some of the bigger names we did a show with like Blood, Sweat & Tears a huge band in the 60’s early 70’s. And I mentioned before Blue Oyster Cult. Nothing recent though. I suppose WE are the biggest name band we have worked with recently! Hahaha! Got to keep our spirits up!

It help us feel a bit more relevant with every release. So we are damn sure looking forward to getting our 4th album out there.

11.Are there any crazy stories from the road that you would like to share?

**Skully – hmmm So many road stories. More recent would be our trip back from Ithaca when we stopped at a rest stop in West Virginia. I took a walk up a hillside to the edge of the forest and there was a pathway going in. I could not resist following the path in a ways. It was really strange. So, I got my brother and Dennis to come check it out. There were these huge ancient headstones from early 1800’s laying around like someone was dumping them off there in the woods. It was not a graveyard. Further down the path there were like hubcaps from old cars and shit and it looked like something out of “The Devils Rejects” hahaha! We figured Capitan Spalding was going to pop out from behind a tree in his clown outfit. Ha! Kind of felt like we were seeing something we should not be seeing.

12.What does SOTW have planned for the future, and what can fans expect?

**Skully – We will just keep on going. Keep on writing, recording, and playing as many live shows as possible.

That is live shows where we can actually “Do A Show” We are working on a full-length 90 minute DVD right now too. It will cover all our history up to date. Interviews with previous and current members and all the music videos we have made so far. Plus a couple of songs from live shows we played in Gainesville FL, and Ithaca NY during 2006.

We are already working on songs for a 5th album.

13.Is SOTW seeking major label deals or would you prefer staying indie and why?

**Skully – If a good enough deal was offered to us we might take it at this point. We would love to have that kind of backing. But, these days it is even more rare then ever to get a good deal with all the support. So we are not shopping for a deal. We are not going to sit on our ass and wait. We will continue to forge ahead on our own. If a good smart company wants us then they shall have to pick up the damn phone and state their case. We have been asked for packages before from a few larger name companies and they were sent out never to be heard from again. Even with follow-up from us several weeks later still no word back.

We have always figured that they heard our material and saw what we did for ourselves and came to the conclusion that we were beyond their ability.

In other words – there was no way they could fool us and screw us.

14.I know that SOTW is huge on the underground scene and you guys have an enormous fan base, what do you think led to that and why?

** Skully – Mail-order, underground magazines, and stick-ability.

We have been building a worldwide fan base since 1994 with sample CD’s, stickers, posters, and then releasing 3 albums on our own. In the beginning we just made as many contacts as possible. We have a lot of them still supporting us today. Long time contacts such as Derek Mcdonald from Canada. Most recently Derek released a CD Rom titled “The Polishing Of Metal”.

SOTW is on it with videos and history. I helped with the artwork for the cover.

And that is an example of how we have worked with our supporters.

We help them to help us. It’s all about networking with the right people.

It would take a few paragraph’s to mention all our supporters. hahaha

SOTW has also benefited from being featured on tribute albums for Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, and Queen as well as several compilations albums put out by various independent record labels.

And our involvement in several independent films with our music used in the soundtracks. Getting involved with as many opportunities as possible has been very good for SOTW.

We started before the Internet was popular and then we jumped right on the Internet in 1996. We also marketed ourselves to over 500 college radio stations with our first 2 releases.

We did not wait for anyone to finance it this band. We financed it ourselves and just kept going with it.

At this point it has grown into over 25,000 die-hard SOTW fans on our list and we did it ourselves. With the help of everyone we come in to contact with.

The support of our music in Europe has been great too even though we have not toured there yet. They like the music. The top European countries that have shown us the most support are Germany, Italy, France, Denmark, Belgium, and it is picking up in Greece. Even a few radio stations in smaller countries such as Slovakia, and Croatia have shown support.

We have been in lots of metal magazines in Europe. Some of them even sporting a 3 page SOTW spread. Magazines such as Heavy Oder Was, Metal Hammer, and many more.

It is work. It is money. But, if you love it you just do it and even if it moves slowly it still always progresses as long as you just keep doing it.

Now that we have built up the demand it is possible to take it up a couple more notches.

15.Do you see the metal scene declining as some media types would have us think, or do you see it getting stronger?

**Skully – I have seen it go up and down like a yo-yo for over 30 years.

Right now I’d say we have a population problem on our hand and that is not going to go away. Metal will always be. Problem is there is so many doing it now that the rewards are spread very thin. So, it is very hard for a band even on a label to make reinvestment capitol. No reinvestment capitol = No growth.

You really need to enjoy doing it in order to stick around. The beauty of it all is no one really knows what will happen next. Of course we will always get people trying to force something to happen. They are called “major labels”.

People that are only concerned with the business end “Money”.

Anyway - I believe it will continue as always to go up and down like a yo-yo.

And I also think we will always see yet another large surge of some “new thing”.

That new thing could be SOTW! Or maybe some other cool band that just hits the right spot at the right time lucky enough to have a bit of cash behind it.

16.What are your thoughts on the current metal scene?

**Skully – Not as good as 70’s or 80’s. Not even as good as early 90’s.

The 1996 Telecommunications Act and the Clear Channel takeover definitely was a major screw-up. That is one of the major causes of such a fucked up scene over the past 10 years. Mainstream radio has become a sack of heavy payola shit that only the major labels can afford. So, mainly if you are not on a major label you will never get any mainstream airplay exposure and the writers royalties that come with it. Again that means no money for Independent / Underground bands.

Therefore there is NO GROWTH CAPITOL.

BUT – now we are seeing people get wise to it. There are Internet radio stations popping up everywhere. There are thousands of College Radio Specialty shows.

Still – in order to take advantage of them all at one time you need lots of cash for mail and one huge campaign. So, most bands still require the cash from a outside investor. Meaning – a record label or they better have rich mommies and daddies willing to fork it over. Or the band itself better be willing to invest.

17.You guys have a really explosive sound! What equipment do you use, and how do you develop that sound?

**Skully – Our equipment is pretty basic I think. My guitar sound is not the standard set-up though as I play through a 300 watt bass rig wired into a 4X12 and one 15 speaker combo. My brother has that powerful sort of voice that sometimes sounds like a battle cry. And it helps to have a unique metal loving keyboard player to give us the extra atmospheric edge. Other than that we just write and write again till we get something that sounds like SOTW coming at you. We are happy that a lot of people enjoy it.

18.The internet has really become a place for bands to showcase their music, and get heard. What are your thoughts on this?

**Skully – It is true. The Internet is the great new way. But, we could all use some educating on how to go about using it. It is wide open now to everyone to become a promoter, a DJ, a magazine reviewer, booking agent, and such.

But, still from what I see a lot of people need some management and marketing training. They load their web pages down with all sorts of flashy stuff and that is nice, but they do not understand the basic common sense of marketing and displaying of product. It needs to look good, but still load fast or your going to lose the interest of potential buyers / fans. Over half of the world is still on dial-up. And there is a still a demographic age group out there that does not give a shit about computers.

And the practice of good business ethics is getting thrown out the damn window. So, yep – we all got some educating to do.

19.What are your thoughts about internet radio stations?

**Skully – The exposure is wonderful and much appreciated. But, it is becoming quite over-populated. And a lot of research is needed to make sure the people on the other end are actually doing what they say they are doing.

And some of the quality of recordings being aired is pretty amateurish. It will take time for people to learn how to regulate things to the audience’s satisfaction. It would be nice to hear a few NEW hits. The kind of unique songs that become classic hits and last forever seems to be a thing of the past. So, I would like see the overall quality improvement. That is in design both visual and audio. It will be interesting to see what becomes of it.

But, don’t get me wrong. It is wonderful to see so many people taking matters into their own hands and trying to help bands get exposure. We love it.

And when we find someone that is really working hard at it and supporting SOTW, we reward them we lots of band swag!

20.I can remember old-school tape trading and bootlegging as I’m sure you do as well. What are your thoughts on sites such as Napster that allow downloading of music?

Skully – Again – bands really need to get paid from somewhere. It is slim pickings trying to make money even from live shows. I don’t have a problem with any type of exposure as long as it is compensating in some way. If a band wants to give their tunes away for free it should be up to “the band” to decide it and sign a proper release form stating it. People out there that give your music away for their own benefit without asking permission need to be moderated.

21.If SOTW could play any show in the world, where would it be and why?

Skully – We would love to play on the main stage at Waken Festival in Germany. We have a lot of fans over there, and by the time we release our 4th album this year there will be many more. I think we would give them one hell of a show. Of course there are quite a few venues in America we would like to play.

Lots of SOTW fans in Los Angeles, and New York. So, we would love to go there and throw down the full SOTW show as well.

22.How is the local scene in Florida and if someone was visiting, where would be THE place to catch a good metal show?

Skully – That’s a good question. A question 8 years ago I would have a good answer for. In my opinion the Tampa Bay area scene is not quite that good right now and has not been for a good while. We don’t quite know what to make of it. And most of it has to do with the venues and the quality of the shows. It is not as good as it once was. Not as good as we think it could be. Seeing people try is always good. But here, in this area, it is rough going. There are so many trailer parks with elderly people. And noise ordinances.

23.What advice would you give to up and coming musicians and bands?

Skully – Get tight. Not only with the music. Get tight in business and your band mates and make sure everyone in your band really is ready to make more sacrifices than you could ever imagine. Set goals and reach for them until you have them in your hand. And once you have them make sure you follow up.

24.Where can fans find your merchandise?

Skully – For anyone on the internet the best and most reliable is, and There are over 32 SOTW songs available for pay downloads at

Our releases can be ordered into stores if they are not on the shelf.

We have a map listing on our website of all the stores in all U.S. states our CD’s can be ordered into. There are thousands.

25.Again, I’d like to thank you for your time in speaking to us about SOTW! Is there anything else that you would like the fans to know and where do you see SOTW in 10 years?

Skully – Thanks for having us.

In ten years I’d say we should have at least another 5 albums out. Hopefully we will have already toured the world at least once. And our music will be all over the film industry. And whatever other opportunities come along that we find attractive we shall follow it up.

Thanks again for featuring SOTW in Metal Storm Monthly. We look forward to a return visit. And as always for our fans “The Bloodtree” – May it grow and never die! Orna Verum baby!
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