Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Interview with Emerald Rage's Jacob Wherley

Emerald Rage is a heavy/power metal band from Akron, Ohio. Not that long ago I covered the band's latest single, "Wrathful Eyes". You can check out my review of the song by heading here. Now it is my pleasure to present this interview that I recently conducted with band member Jacob Wherley (vocals/guitars). Enjoy!

Andy- Could you please introduce your band and give us a brief history of how you came together.

Jacob- Emerald Rage actually started out as a strictly viking/folk metal band around summer of 2016. You know your bands like Tyr, Ensiferum, and Bathory. We had almost a complete lineup as we were missing another guitarist. I figured I might as well put out an ad online thinking I'd get nothing due to the lack of attention those bands get here in the United States. Patrick responded to it sending material he had made already and I was just astonished that someone else in the area actually listened to that stuff. Tyson and Josh were not in the band yet either. Patrick knew Josh from some classes the two both took at Kent State and he soon fit in perfectly. I met Tyson through a website for finding band members. He initially joined on bass before Josh came into Emerald Rage, but with complications with our former drummer, we found he had a great talent behind the kit and was enthusiastic to play drums. We finally stabilized our current lineup around October of 2017 and have been making lots of progress since.

Andy-What made you decide to call your band Emerald Rage?

Jacob-My dad actually played in a band called Emerald Rage in college. It was a cover band that only played two shows for fun and a little beer money haha. I tried coming up with names although I didn't have much luck. I thought the name gave a good representation of us as if you were to say 'Emerald Rage' you could either envision a power metal band from Germany, a traditional metal band from England, or a classic foot-stomping heavy rock band like Thin Lizzy. Of course, all these types of sounds are huge inspirations you hear and will hear in material to come.

Andy-Your sound pulls from a few different genres of metal. Is that the result of individual tastes or just one person's vision?

Jacob-It's a collective sound. We have plenty of different styles from hard rock to black metal and everything in between. What's great about our band members is that we all have a common ground, and also our own tastes that we contribute. For instance, our bassist Josh is a HUGE punk rock fan, I myself am the reason for the power metal sound, Tyson, for the thrash, and Patrick for the black/folk metal style. On top of that, we each have a large variety of sounds we share like Metallica, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, etc. it's just a great combination because we always have more ideas. In fact, the next demo you'll be hearing soon draws more influences from bands such as Thin Lizzy, Deep Purple, and UFO.

Andy-As a follow-up to the previous question, what are some of your influences?

Jacob-If you had to narrow it down to five bands, I'd say Sabaton, Iron Maiden, Thin Lizzy, Rainbow, and Helloween. You of course hear the classic metal sound of bands such as Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, and Saxon there. But there's tons of scenes over the years that grabbed our attention. Aside from the NWOBHM and Bay Area scene that's a common feature in many American metal bands, we have a huge inspiration from the German speed metal scene with bands such as Running Wild, Blind Guardian, Kreator, Sodom, and as I mentioned earlier, Helloween. The Swedish melodic metal scene has also played a crucial role in our sound as well. HammerFall, Sabaton, Amon Amarth, just to name a few have been of influence at some point.

Andy-Who is responsible for writing song lyrics?

Jacob-Our guitarist Patrick is usually the one who creates the lyrics. Every now and then I contribute a few lines.

Andy-You mentioned another demo. What can your fans expect from it?

Jacob-Well our envision as a band has always been to expect anything from Led Zeppelin to Slayer. This will be a bit more on the bluesy side of Emerald Rage. Our fans should anticipate a bit of a reference to Thin Lizzy, Deep Purple, and Motorhead, with a kick of melody.

Andy- In the past few months Emerald Rage has released two singles and a demo. That is an impressive body of work for such a short stretch. Do you guys have easy access to a studio?

Jacob-Our guitarist Patrick has a quite impressive rig when it comes to his recording equipment. We've actually never been to a professional studio as a band and we use his equipment to record all of our work. He has access to quite a bit which gives a really solid sound!

Andy-Who are some of the bands that you’ve shared the stage with?

Jacob-Aeraco, hard rock/heavy metal band out of Chicago. Definitely one of our favorites so far. Great group of guys and amazing tunes! Radiatrix is another one, M102, Half Raised Heathens, and Stone Wicked Souls.

Andy-Prior to our conversation here we talked about you performing covers and then how you planned to play all original material moving forward. What are some of the bands that you’ve covered and then how many original songs have you guys written so far?

Jacob-We have covered Metallica, Judas Priest, Sabaton, and surprisingly to most, The Misfits! We have around 20-25 originals written but not fully complete. As of now, we can perform around 5 to 6 originals and that number will likely move up in the up and coming weeks.

Andy-You have some local shows booked for the next couple of months. Care to share that information with our readers?

Jacob-Absolutely. We have a show March 17th, in Akron, Ohio at the Empire Concert Club. April 14th at Bullshooters in Ashland, Ohio. April 17th at the Outpost in Kent, Ohio, and a Cleveland show on May 26th is likely but I cannot say for sure as of now.

Andy- How can our readers reach you?

Jacob-We are on Facebook, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Reverbnation, and we also have an email at emeraldrageband@gmail.com. Fans and readers can reach out any time they'd like!

Andy-Excellent! I just want to thank you for taking the time to talk with us today. As we close things out is there anything that we didn't talk about that you would like to mention? Any final thoughts or comments? The microphone is all yours...

Jacob-Thank you for asking us for the interview! As for closing out, I hope your readers take time to listen to our music and even better come out to see us live! We always love to put on a great show... If you're looking for your next talented big name band, I hope you see it in us!

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