Cyclops Cataract INTERVIEW

LOMM: Can you give a little biographical and historical info; who is involved in the band, and how did you guys meet up? 

Scott Hogg – 4 of us were in a death metal band called Element 106. Our vocalist, Craig was in another band. We asked if he would be interested in forming a brand-new band that would also incorporate black metal, grindcore and ambient elements.

LOMM: Pandemic has taken an emotional toll on everyone yet the arts have been hit especially hard. The musicians are vulnerable to financial upheaval. How have you guys have been holding up?

Band: As a band a couple of us have lost our jobs but thankfully managed to regain employment. The pandemic has been an incredible stress mentally. Cyclops Cataract has been a great way to let of steam. Brutal music can be oddly cathartic

Lady herself: I concur. On the other hand, you seem to have had a productive time. Is that right?

Scott Hogg: Yes, we have created an EP and a full-length album during the pandemic.

LOMM: Tell us about your genre, what does it means to you, why did you choose this genre?

Scott Hogg: We all like bands like Strapping Young Lad, Cannibal Corpse, Dimmu Borgir etc. At the same time, some of us like more leftfield bands like Ulver too, so we decided to create a band that would cover that sonic gamut.

From the outset, I have wanted to create a band that has even a hint of the ferocity of Strapping Young Lad, the riffs of Gojira and the memorable songwriting of Metallica/Megadeth.

LOMM: How did the initial musical and thematic elements evolve?
Scott Hogg: I wrote about 90% of the music, James also came up with some great ideas and solos that helped fill out the sound. Craig writes the vast majority of the lyrics. Chris and Mark also help with ideas.

LOMM: Are you happy with your product? What aspects of it do you think you guys nailed, and what parts do you think you could improve upon?

Scott Hogg: It was good to get constructive feedback from reviewers when we released our initial EP. From there I think we managed to tighten up the quality of our recordings.

LOMM: How has the overall reception been?

Scott Hogg – We released one song a few months back and the feedback was really encouraging. Only a few friends have heard other songs and it’s been great to hear so many positive comments.

LOMM: Have you ever been on a tour? Given live performances? Is it tough for you not to be able to do so now?

Scott Hogg: We have played gigs around the UK in other bands. However, because of Covid, we haven’t played a concert as Cyclops Cataract. I’m sure we will as soon as things get a bit more back to normal.

LOMM: What is the next step for you? How is the future looking?
Craig Sinkins: Keep writing and recording, hopefully be able to play live again

LOMM: Could you tell us about the lyrics / themes /concepts you focus on or plan to focus on? How did the ideas come about, and how do they influence the writing process? Who is writing the lyrics?
Craig Sinkins: Generally I tend to take a story approach, using the songs to tell a story either entirely my own fiction or based on historical events or from books/movies, almost always in a dark way. The idea for the concept of songs based on Scottish folklore came about due to an interest in Scottish history.

LOMM: Who is composing the songs?
Scott Hogg: The music is mostly written by myself. James also helps. Craig writes the majority of the lyrics. Mark and Chris also help.

LOMM: What bands do you draw your inspiration from?
Band: Strapping Young Lad, Dimmu Borgir, Gojira, Emperor, Anaal Nathrakh to name just a few.

LOMM: Which is more exciting? Being on the road or studio?
Mark Robertson: We love playing live. It has an energy that you don’t get in the studio.
Chris Wilkie: Live, although I prefer to play smaller personal venues, not festivals as it’s a lot more personal with the crowd

LOMM: What first got you into music?
Craig Sinkins: Never actually thought about it, just always been there and wanted to be in bands even when growing up

LOMM: What do you like the best about being a musician? And what is it that you do not like much?

Craig Sinkins: Being able to challenge myself with each new song or project, so that each time it gets better and my abilities improve at the same time. For not liking so much, no idea

LOMM: If you weren’t musicians, what would you be doing?

Scott Hogg: I think I shall be a musician until my fingers can no longer hold a plectrum. However, I’m a photographer so I would continue with that career.

LOMM: If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Scott Hogg: I would like to see more financial aid for musicians during the pandemic. Musicians have to be some of the hardest hit because of the lack of touring.

LOMM: What’s more important to you? Catering to the audience or music for its own sake?
Scott Hogg: We write music because of love of music. If people enjoy our music, that’s a bonus. We don’t really try to conform to trends.

LOMM: What is the most memorable gig that you have played to date?

James Dron: If in general, then Hellfest main stage in 2017. Opening for Slayer.

Lady herslef: I was there! Great one guys! So, when you look back your music career, what do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Scott Hogg: The making of our new album. I know it’s probably an obvious answer but this album has been the album I have always wanted to make. I’m even using 20 + year old riff ideas that I have never used because I have been saving them for an album like this one.

Who would you like to collaborate with?
James Dron: I like female metal vocals so Alissa White-Gluz or Lena Scissorhands guest vocal or a Josh Middleton guest solo

LOMM: Who would you like to go on a tour with?

James Dron: If it was back in’t day then either Metallica on the Justice tour or Pantera in general. Nowadays Sylosis I suppose!

Lady herself: Sylosis!! Love them!!!

Scott Hogg: Celtic Frost – Not because of the music. It’s more because Tom G Warrior seems like an interesting guy. I admire his honesty.

LOMM: If you could play any festival in the world, which one would you choose? Tell us why.

Mark Robertson: Wacken Open Air – looks amazing and usually has incredibly strong line ups.

LOMM: Name some of your all-time favorite albums? Include controversial ones.

Craig Sinkins: That would probably be “Metropolis Part 2: Scenes From A Memory” by Dream Theater. It’s one of the first concept albums that really stuck with me due to the story flowing really well from song to song, plus the composition and musicianship is outstanding

Lady herself: I’m totally with you 🙂

James Dron: Favourite album: “…And Justice For All” because it is super aggressive and unique sounding. Hetfield at his absolute best, Hammett killing it. Songs are interesting and it’s great to play along with. Favourite controversial album: Michael Jackson – “Bad”. Just full of total tunes throughout haha! Controversial in terms of being one of the only non-metal artists I listen to, and because of MJs controversial persona in general!

Scott Hogg: “Alien” by Strapping Young Lad. Controversial: “Cloud 9” by George Harrison.

Mark Robertson: Probably one of Devin Townsend’s albums.

Lady herself: Agree with you too.. Love everything he does. Genius musician!

Chris Wilkie: “Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia” by Dimmu Borgir.

LOMM: What does your collection look like? Mostly Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs, Digital? A bit of everything? A total mess?

Scott Hogg: I’m a cd kind of guy. I love looking at the lyrics and info in the booklet.

LOMM: What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
Band: We live in Scotland. There are some really good bands in our part of the world – Dvne, Party Cannon, Ruadh, Ray Brower, Hellripper to name just a few.

LOMM: You can invite 5 people to a dinner party, from the future, the past, rock stars, a movie characters, you name it. Who are you having dinner with?

Scott Hogg: Peter Steele, Salvador Dali, Devin Townsend, James Hetfield, Robin Williams

LOMM: What is your weirdest memory in your music career?

James Dron: The offer of an ESP Explorer in exchange for my Custom Shop ESP Hanneman; I said no obviously! That was an early Element gig with 3 Inches Of Blood and Biomechanical. Must’ve been 2007.

LOMM: What is the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

James Dron: A bottle of Rose wine.

LOMM: If you had one message to your fans, what would it be?

Scott Hogg: Thank you so much for taking the time out to listen to our music.

LOMM: Anything else you think your fans should know?

Scott: Stay safe and we hope to see you once Covid subsides.

LOMM: Thank you for taking the time!

Band: Thank you! 🙂

Lady Herself: Entirely a pleasure 😊

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cyclopscataract

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cyclopscataract/

YouTube: https://bit.ly/3fxvquu

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