An Interview With Havoc Faction
The latest release from Havoc Faction certainly brings on a brutally heavy but epically melodic and vast metal soundscape that hits a cinematic sweet spot and brings along with it and undertone of aggression an inspiration in the form of a sonically driving banger.
"Conflicts & Confrontation" features outstanding guitar work all over it and not to mention drumming that is not only destructive but amazingly intricate and perfected but still performed with so much soul.
And I think that's what it is with this band. I think these guys perform with everything they have and that goes for what I'm hearing which is on the record itself. Who knows what they sound like live, it's probably even crazier. All I know is these guys put heart into their music and their performances and that shines through during the course of this single without question.
This track boasts a high energy and a combination of aggressive but melodic vocals that fit the bill just right to create a certain atmosphere that lets everything meant together and work perfectly.
Listening to this song first thing in the morning really does make you feel like you can take on just about anything. Even if there's some daunting stuff happening in the day this track can probably just push you right through it.
And it's great to have music like that. Especially in the form of heavy driving metal because sometimes people think of the genre in one light only.
Which is nonsense because metal has tons of sub genres and different styles and approaches that let each band create a different feel for themselves.
Havoc Faction has an epic and almost Anthony metal Style and they definitely put effort into those guitar parts and sections because the track is never blown out. It's never overdone. It's never too much.
Everything about this single is done tastefully and it's performed with a gracefulness that brings more allure to the music.
This is a fists in the air, shout along, and bang your head track and with its release we just had to have a sit-down with the band to find out where this actually came from and also, what may be next for them.
Here's what happened.
Buzz Slayers: Let's kick things off with Conflict and Confrontation. This single had a very heavy and cinematic feel to it! Where did this track come from?
Thank you so much! That’s exactly what we wanted to do for our first release as this lineup. We wanted to showcase a new level of Havoc Faction while keeping true to the sound of the band. Cinematic and epic has always been the goal when writing songs. This track actually spawned from our guitarist, Christopher aka Renegade. He showed us the intro idea that he wrote and then we just built the song up together from that. It came together pretty organically. Vocally, everything flowed really well. The only part I struggled writing was the chorus. I had so many ideas for what it could be. After trying about 3-4 ideas, the band decided the original idea I came up with was the best one. Which I agreed. I also knew I wanted to do more screaming in this song than I normally do. I really wanted this song to go hard. After writing my parts, I had a clean melody idea for the chorus that I knew would be best if my other guitarist, Joel aka Phaze, sang it. I think we compliment each other really well vocally, which is really showcased in our other recent release, Welcome To The Fight (Acoustic Version). Buzz Slayers: When did this all start for you guys?
- I originally came up with havoc faction and recorded my very first song (Keyboard Warriors) in November 2016. I knew this project was going to be a post-apocalyptic/vigilante themed concept band. I spent 2017 coming up with the story and concept with my original lineup. We played our first show in March of 2018 opening for Dogwood and The Beautiful Mistake at chain reaction. We dropped originally dropped our Welcome to the fight EP that year (re-released it in 2020 with bonus tracks). At the end of 2019 my original lineup all decided to go on different paths and no longer peruse music on the level we were. It was a hard moment for sure. But I continued on. I spent 2020 writing a lot and coming up with the actual storyline and concept. In 2021 I released a prologue video with narration and really amazing artwork to help build the world of havoc faction. I followed that up with my song crossfire with a music video that dove deeper into the story. In 2022 I solidified a brand new lineup and played our first show since 2019. It was held at the Hard Rock Cafe in Hollywood and the place was packed. It was a very warm welcoming to say the least. Buzz Slayers: What inspires you to write a song?
- Most of my songs are either politically or philosophically charged. Like most good music, it starts with a deep emotion that I need to release. Conflicts & Confrontation was very much driven by some anger and angst I needed to release, all built up during the pandemic from modern day society. Growing up I’ve always resonated with being part of the counter culture, so I was really inspired to write something that’s about fighting back against modern day conformity, which I believe stems a lot from social media and the media in general. Buzz Slayers: This song has some great styles! Can you give us some of your top musical influences?
-Thank you! All of us have very similar influences, like pop punk, classic post-hardcore, emo, and metal, but we also all have our own major individual influences. For me personally, thrice, starset, story of the year, fightstar, funeral for a friend, rise against, chevelle, and killswitch engage have always been huge musical inspirations to me. But notably there’s some modern bands now that have really been inspiring me. Buzz Slayers: What are you doing when you're NOT working on music?
-I’m really into action sports and being outside. I surf, snowboard and rock climb. Being out in nature is my favorite place to disconnect and find new found inspiration.
I also attend a lot of shows, whether I’m supporting my friends’ bands or I’m going to see some of my favorite bands at venues or festivals. I also love attending conventions like comic con or wonder con. Cosplay has become a new hobby since starting this band. I’m rolling out my first official cosplay as nightwing soon, followed by Ben Reily’s scarlet Spider-Man. Buzz Slayers: Who's in your headphones right now?
Other than those influences I mentioned I’ve really been enjoying some modern day bands lately like static dress, loathe, soul blind, teenage wrist, and foreign hands. I also really enjoy synthwave and synthrock artists like The Anix, kalax, new arcades, timecop 1983, I will never be the same, and gunship. Buzz Slayers: Are you doing any live performances right now?
Unfortunately we are undergoing some lineup changes at the moment, Christopher (lead guitar) and Dani aka shroud (bassist) are stepping away from the band to pursue personal projects. Joel, Kevin and I will probably be taking some time away from shows and focus on building the fan base, writing new music and content, and find replacements. But we’re not going anywhere, especially after the response we’ve been receiving recently. Buzz Slayers: This single feels like a big undertaking, is there any advice you'd give to other up and coming bands out there?
-oh man, where do I begin haha. All of this “advice” is basically stuff I’ve been learning and am still learning. I’d say a big thing is to take your time in writing some killer songs that you can invest into. Don’t launch anything until you have your content ready. After putting time and effort into your releases and building up your fan base, then you can work on booking some shows. This day and age it just doesn’t really make sense to play shows until you have something of a brand for fans to try to sink their teeth into. There’s too much competition to release halfbaked songs with low quality production. Even if your live show kicks ass, if someone goes to follow you on social media or Spotify and your music and content isn’t worth while, you’re just losing potential fans. So really take your time and invest in yourself. Don’t half Ass your production for your songs. Work with a producer who can push you to make your songs better. I so much prefer recording witg someone vs recording myself. I’ve recorded my own vocals before by myself but it’s not nearly as great as when I work with my producer friends. I could go on but I’ll leave it at that haha. Buzz Slayers: What can your fans expect from you in the near future?
- we plan to drop an EP this year. I have so many half written songs I plan on finally finishing. I also plan on getting the first issue of our official comic book out this year. Along with some really awesome video content as well. Just going to be going balls to the wall with content this year. Last year we focused on shows, this year it’s content. Buzz Slayers: Before we go, what would you like to say to fans of the music?
- I’d just really like to say thank you so much. If you’ve been here since the beginning or you’re a brand-new fan, your support is what keeps this band going. I know that we’re a very niche band but the fan base that we’ve built already has been incredible. It’s been a slow but steady build, and I always try to be as personable as possible, so don’t be afraid to reach to me on the band’s instagram or my personal instagram (@havoc_faction or @backdraft.official) about anything. I love to talk music, movies, comic books, philosophy, life, anything and everything. Merch is what helps fund this band so if anyone ever feels inclined to buy something from our merch store, that helps a lot. And if there’s a merch idea that you’d love to see, feel free to let me know. I wanna make merch that fans want to wear.