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Lord Dying
Over the years, Lord Dying has been working hard at becoming a major power house in the Sludge Metal community. Two years after their Relapse Records debut Summon the Faithless, the four-piece return with their latest effort Poisoned Altars. I was given the chance to shoot some interview questions over the band to discuss the album, the recent line-up change, and more. Check out what guitarist/vocalist Erik Olson had to say!

How is everything going on your end? I hope all is well.

Erik:
Everything is going pretty good. Thanks!

So I hear you guys have a new album due out soon titled Poisoned Altars. What was the writing process like for it? If I remember correctly the band did a good amount of touring, so did that play a part in it positively or negatively?

Erik:
That’s true, We start with the riffs. Chris and I write the riffs and when we have good ones we show them to each other and jam them for a while, until we have a structure we like and then turn that into a skeleton of a song and then show it to the other guys. Lyrics and vocals come last. We did a LOT of touring. I think all the touring we did played a positive roll in our sound. Just being out playing that much helped us get better and search farther for inspiration.

At some point in 2014, Lord Dying parted ways with Jon Reid. Was this an amicable seperation?

Erik:
Yeah, it was an amicable separation, he wasn’t able to keep doing our relentless touring cycle and had some things going on in his life that needed his attention, so we had to part ways. We still all still buds though, no harsh feelings what so ever.

Was Jon at all involved with the writing of material for Poisoned Altars? If so, what of his made it to the final product?

Erik:
He was actually. Most of the songs were written while he was still in the band, although Rob added his own final touches to the songs before entering the studio as well.

How did you guys end up gaining Rob Shaffer in his place? Also, how is he working out for you? Any benefits to working with him that weren’t available to use when recording Summon the Faithless?

Erik:
Rob has lived in Portland now for several years and used to play drums in the band Dark Castle which we were all fans of and when Jon announce that he would be stepping down Rob seemed like a good fit. Working with Rob was great, he learned the parts really fast and paid close attention to the what the guitars were doing. He also played the guitar solo on ‘Suckling at the Teat of a She-Beast!’

I could pick up on a good deal of Punk and Hardcore elements in Poisoned Altars the more I listened to it. Were you guys trying to branch out from the standard Sludge Metal approach more this time around, or is that more of a coincidence?

Erik:
Yeah, we are always trying to play outside of our comfort zone and expand our sound both musically and as individuals. As far as the Punk and Hardcore elements go, i’d say that might have something to with Joel Grind being the producer, he tends to make things have a punk sound, which I think is awesome.

The more I listen to “An Open Sore”, the more I can’t help but feel this one has more of a personal meaning behind it than the rest. Does it, or is it just something that wound up having a lot more sorrow behind it than the rest of the angry material on the album?

Erik:
Yeah, ‘An Open Sore’ was written about someone in particular I was hanging around with around the time of recording that was a real soul sucker, however I hope all is well in the end.

How about the rest of the album in general? Who or what were some of the bigger influences during the writing phase? Anything that stands out in particular?

Erik:
I wasn’t really listening to any bands in particular during the music part of the writing session but during the lyrical part of the writing I was listening to nothing but old school death metal. The lyrics are mostly personal about relationships, and addiction.

And, speaking of touring, you guys have a lot of dates set in stone for the start of 2015 for North America. You guys almost ready to hit the road again? Also, are there any shows in particular you’re looking forward to playing?

Erik:
Yeah, we can’t wait to get back out on the road. We leave on 2/1/2015 the tour is 7 weeks. We love playing in NYC, Chicago, Memphis, Austin, LA, etc. But this time we have a few shows in Florida which we don’t always get the opportunity to play, so we’re excited about that. Plus we’re looking forward to the weather there, I hear it’s nice in February!

Is there anything you can reveal about your set at these dates, such as some songs to expect to hear or anything out of the ordinary you guys intend to do?

Erik:
We will be playing a revolving set of 5 songs off of each album. We usually always play “In a Frightful State of Gnawed Dismemberment” and “Dreams of Mercy” but expect to see “Poisoned Altars,” “A Wound Outside of Time” and others as well!

So, other than the upcoming tour dates, what else is going on in the Lord Dying camp for 2015?

Erik:
We are currently writing more material and hope to record an EP at some point in 2015.

Is there anything else you want to mention I didn’t touch on?

Erik:
We look forward to seeing everyone on the road in 2015!

Thanks for your time, and I hope all goes well for you with those dates and the release of Poisoned Altars! Take care!

Lord Dying: Poisoned Altars
Lord Dying
Interview conducted thanks to Freeman Promotions.