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Castle Freak
I recently had the chance to check out the new Castle Freak EP Still Rotting, as well as shoot some interview questions over to the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania based Death Metal/Grindcore act. Vocalist and guitarist Andrew Gigan took the time to get some answers back to me. Check out what he had to say.

First of all, I see Castle Freak picked up a new member this year. Why did the band decide to incorporate Zak Carter on guitars and become a four-piece?

Andrew:
We had another guitarist who recorded Still Rotting with us, but it obviously didn’t work out. It was never in my plan for Castle Freak to be a 4 piece but after the EP was recorded I was happy with how it was working out. So after our last guitarist left we decided on finding a replacement. I’d met Zak once or twice before and I knew he was friends with our drummer Pierson so I just figured I’d give him a shot. I think it was him because he had no real band history. I was pretty sick of how incestuous the scene was with members so I brought him on as a fresh face. I stand by my decision.

Clearly Castle Freak is a band largely inspired by Horror films. What are some of your favorites that inspired that theme for the group? Has there been any interesting films that have come out lately you have enjoyed?

Andrew:
Oh yeah there’s tons of movies that inspire Castle Freak, far too many to name so here’s a rushed top 5: Escape From New York (1981), The Hills Have Eyes (1977), Class Of Nuke Em High (1986), Re-Animator (1985) & Return Of The Living Dead (1985). As far as more modern stuff goes, I have a hard time keeping up with newer movies because all the older movies are so good I wanna watch them again and again. There was a couple movies that came out last year I thought were okay. ‘Return to Nuke Em High’, ‘Spiders’, ‘Pacific Rim’ and ‘Big Ass Spider’ were some of them. The only movie that came out this year I had any desire to see was ‘The Green Inferno’. Castle Freak is also influenced by TV shows which include; Tales From The Crypt, ECW & The Walking Dead.

“Beneath These Streets” starts off with a clip from the trailer to the movie C.H.U.D. Does this directly reflect the lyrics to Beneath These Streets, or is the song not necessarily about those cannibalistic humanoid underground dwellers? How about the other four songs? Are any of them direct references to other Horror flicks?

Andrew:
Definitely inspired by, but not based on. Beneath These Streets is like CHUD if the freaks from The Hills Have Eyes were living under the city. As for the rest of the EP, ‘Caught In A Casket’ is based on the Tales From The Crypt episode “Abra Cadaver” & I suppose ‘Sickening Corpses’ is a mesh up of ‘Return of the Living Dead’ and The Walking Dead.

I always love a good vile sounding recording. How did you guys end up getting Still Rotting to sound the way it does, and who did you work with as far as studio time and mastering goes?

Andrew:
Still Rotting was recorded and mixed by Cassidy from Cape of Bats and mastered by David Prae from Living Decay. It was recorded entirely in my basement over the course of two months. That means there’s plenty of time for the set up to get moved around and for the levels to change and that’s sort of why these recordings sound the way they do. Every track was recorded in a different spot so none of them have the same recording quality. It’s sort of like each track has it’s own unique quality.

Clearly with such an analog sound, it’s no surprise Still Rotting will be on cassette, but is there any talk about other formats other than an accompanying digital option through Bandcamp?

Andrew:
There isn’t any talk of doing anything yet but we’re certainly not opposed to doing anything else.

Since Castle Freak came into existence, you have issued a demo and an EP. Are there any plans to record a full-length soon, or are you guys holding off for now?

Andrew:
We are actually in the very early writing process for a full length. My plan right now is for it to be roughly 18 tracks with new tracks and re-recordings of old songs. We’re planning another release between Still Rotting and the Full Length. Which you will hopefully hear about sometime in 2015.

So what’s next for Castle Freak? Are there any live shows coming up soon, other plans to promote Still Rotting, or anything else going on in life for you and the others?

Andrew:
We didn’t exactly plan it this way but we’re currently having Still Rotting streamed on Decibel Magazine’s website to promote it’s release, which of course is available through Tridroid records on October 7th.

Thanks for your time, Andrew. Take care!


Castle Freak: Still Rotting
Castle Freak
Interview conducted thanks to Dewar PR.