This year GhostFest played host to some of the biggest names in the current metal scene; and we at BringTheNoiseUK seized this opportunity to delve deeper into the life of Martyr Defiled and learn how the band came to be, how the tracks come together, message behind the band name, the inspirations that fuel the guys, up and coming EP, tour tales, the infamous ‘Portners bar’ and much more.
How did the band start?
Back in 2007, I was 17, that was ages ago now. It was our old guitarists old band before it split up called Millicent Grove. And out of that, me, him and another guy decided to start a band. We got a couple of people together and weirdly when we started we had two vocalists but that only lasted about 2 weeks, but will get to that… Our drummer Ricky, he was on Myspace one day and this random guy from Denmark said “can anyone in the UK put me up for a few weeks”, so this guy moved over, stayed with Ricky. Then that guy moved to Nottingham, got into my ex-guitarists old band, they split up, we started a new band and because of this guy he brought Ricky and our old guitarist Dave in to the band and that’s how it came together. And then the other guy Kenneth ended up sleeping with Ricky’s girlfriend and ended up moving swiftly back to Denmark. Ricky is a big guy, a big angry guy.
What’s the first song you did?
Its called condoning, It just happened. We came together in the practise room and it happened. Ripped off a couple of Suicide Silence riffs, and that was that. It was blatant Suicide Silence riffs as well. We didn’t even realise until after we recorded it but we were like “that’s pretty similar that, isn’t it”.
Who generally writes the songs? And what’s the inspirations you’ve got?
Musically, Dave Trees and Lee write a lot of the stuff. A lot of bands will have one guys that writers all the songs, we’re not one of them bands, we’re a band that everyone has to have their input. We all 5 very strong minded, very strong willed guys. We’ll have an idea, sometimes we’ll have the same idea, sometimes we wont. When we get together in a practise room we tend to just, it just happens. A riff will happen then another riff, and another riff then all of a sudden you’ve got a full song in a couple of minutes. Or we’ll be stuck on a riff for hours.
I suppose you get more variety with different inputs…
Yeah, yeah you do. But sometimes that can be a detriment because you’ll have 5 different ideas and everyone will sit and bitch at each other and argue. Then you wont get a song made in time or riff will get binned and then you make a new one. We always get there in the end.
How did you get noticed?
Myspace back in the day really. We added a lot of people and did the thing that everyone was doing with Myspace and it seemed to work for us. We played loads of shows, we did a lot of driving. I remember a particular instance, we all finished work at 7 and drove 4 hours to Telford and turned up 30 seconds before we were on stage, played, left and drove home another 4 hours, got home at 3 and started work at 5. We did that weekly, every week. It was savage but we loved it and we still love it. That’s why do it because we love it.
What other musicians would you love to play with?
Slayer, I would love to play with Slayer. Its a tough question because a lot of bands that I looked up to when I was 17 I’ve been playing with; without sound like I have an ego or anything. We got the amazing opportunity to play with “Unearth” the other week. I haven’t seen on earth since I was 14. We played one of the most weirdest, surreal shows ever. It’s like 40 people there to see unearth and we saw unearth smash this 100 cap venue to pieces, it was incredible. Seeing bands like that, bands from when I use to go to shows, bands from when your little, and you think “I would love to do that, I’d love to be on that stage”. And then you’re there on that stage and they come on after you and you’re like “Jesus”. I’m still that 14 year old kid deep down inside. Your still like “god that was amazing!” We all came away from that show like “they were amazing! Like incredible”. Seeing any band like that, whether its Slayer, Unearth or Will Haven. Any bands big or small you use to idolise when you were little, seeing them again when your older and still being that kid inside. You’re like “Fucking hell that was amazing”. I think that there is to many to mention, but yeah, everyone wants to play with Slayer.
Have you ever seen slayer?
I’ve never seen slayer, no. I think I want to play with them just so I can see them. Ha!
What are your goals as a band?
We don’t really have any. We use to be a band that said “We have to get massive, we have to be this we have to be that” You just gotta take stock of it. You got to reassess and go back to the loving. With out doing ’cause of anything, or because of any ulterior motive. We’re doing it because we’re doing it, because we love it. Its just because its fun. If you’re not having fun, what’s the point in doing anything?
What plans do you have for up and coming albums?
We have an EP coming out 3rd of September, just dropped a new video for that a couple of days ago. That’s going well, got a few fair views so far already and hopefully that will keep growing. It’s 7 tracks, and we’ve already released two, the bonus tracks Goldstein and Isolate they’ve been out for quite a while and we dropped ‘vultures’ the video a couple of days ago, then there’s another 4 songs after that and they’re brand new. Its heavy, we’re really happy with this release. Really happy.
What’s your favourite memory from touring so far?
Budapest – We played this show in Southampton then we had this machine of a driver called Steve Smith he’s a legend. We have this tour video which is pretty much dedicated to how awesome he is. He’s like some 40 year old Geordie. He drove us 35 hours straight from Southampton all the way to Budapest. As you drive up to Budapest you come up to this hill, a massive verge, its a huge verge it must be like 15/20 miles long and as you come over you then you see the river, the bridges and as we drove over the cusp of this verge, the sun just hit us. It was like something out of a movie, have you seen Requiem for a dream when their driving? The sunlight just hit and lifted over and the sky was bright pink. It was beautiful. When you’ve drove 35 hours, and nobody slept, the driver cant even look at the road and then that happened. Then we drove to the show and drove to where we were staying, slept and drove to the show and there was 700 people there to see us. It was incredible. We’d never been to Budapest before. There was a guy who came to us while we were there and said my girlfriend bought a t-shirt and demo 3 years ago, and I vaguely remember posting it out, I remember sending it because I post everything out. He had this t-shirt on and CD, and he was like “Can you sign this, I’ve just got on the train 8 hours just to see you.” I was like, what the hell! 8 hours?! Just to see us?! It was a totally humbling experience to see people like that.
What’s the craziest thing you have gotten up to on tour.
Loads, On that same tour we stopped in this guy house called Portner. He had this cellar downstairs called Portners bar and Oh my god, I’ve never been so drunk in my life. He just wouldn’t stop, he just kept pouring shots and we would just stand there and shout at you until you drunk it. He came to the show and then we went and stayed at his house. He kept getting us more and more immortaled. It was honestly to the point that I blacked out, I was walking around and I couldn’t see a thing, I was throwing up for 7 hours, our guitarist Dave was in the corner crying, it was hilarious! So much fun. But it’s just one of many, we’ve had to many drunken ridiculous nights.
Where does the name derive from?
It’s all about dying for a false cause, and everything you believe in being shit. Not being worth what it was worth. Like, religion, politics, in your job, life, girlfriend, everything. Just feeling lost, like you haven’t got anything left.
So pretty deep then, do you consider yourself a deep group?
Politicly we go very deep in to, we use to be very politicly charged in the album we previously released. Now we’re more about lyrically bring humanity back in, the worlds full of apathy and it should be like that. That’s what we try and bring across.
Whats been your biggest challenge as a band so far, and how did you over come it?
Oh god, we like to call ourselves Martyr Defailed because everything just breaks all the time. The worse ones when our van broke down in Holland on the way to Amsterdam, we were playing a gig just outside. We were driving up and just broke down. No European break down so we had to get towed to the show which cost us 600 Euros, then it cost us to pay someone to come pick us up, pay for their ferry, and their petrol, and their van and their hire, which was about 500 Euros; And then pay to get back, another 200 Euros, and then we only got paid a couple hundred euros for the show. It just cost so much money, I’m still feeling it. I had to put it on my credit card and I’m still feeling it and paying it off. It’s horrible!
How are you enjoying GhostFest?
I’ve not really experienced much, I’ve literally walked in the door, settled merch and walked straight here. We’ve been here like 5 years running though so I’m sure it will be amazing again. We went to the after-party last night though, got pissed. I was leathered. Leathered leathered. I was beyond drunk.
What’s been your favourite live gig that you done?
Probably GhostFest to Russia. It was incredible. It was the most humbling experience just to see people the whole room watching you. Everyone’s eyes on you. It was such a humbling experience to play a festival this size and on the main stage as well.
So do you think you will play GhostFest in the upcoming years?
Hopefully if Toyan will have us, we’re always gonna play here. I mean we owe him favours.
Any messages you’d like to give to the bring the noise readers?
Check out the video, check out the EP. We’re self funding our EP, everything we’re doing is self funded too so if you can help out, pre order its only £4.
Thanks for your time, good luck and keep bringing the noise!
- Nick Francis
Tags: Martyr Defiled