Automb's Danielle. Chaosophy!
Updated: Aug 2, 2022
Danielle Evans is the vocalist/ bass player for Automb and if you haven’t heard their technical Blackened Death Metal then you soon will! A sound borne in Chaos and manipulated into a potent musical force their new Album Chaosophy has just landed everywhere...
What was the moment originally that got you into metal and decided to play bass? Or was it vocals that came first?
I can’t remember the exact moment that I got into metal but it was around middle school, and I was already playing guitar before I got into metal (mainly classic rock). I got into black metal in high school and was always slightly interested in playing bass but never did regularly, aside from a few lessons. I also was regular singer for years growing up and was part of a choir in college (I have a minor in music). In regards to Automb, the vocals came first and then I decided to do vocals and bass simultaneously.
Your influences and inspirations when it comes to music?
Belphegor, Watain, Dissection, Cannibal Corpse (Alex Webster), Mayhem, Tsjuder
How did you find out you could roar vocally like that? Do your vocal influences differ from your musical ones?
I found out when we were recording demos for ‘Esoterica’. Serge was going to do vocals and it just wasn’t working so I asked him to let me try, and he was doubtful about how it was going to go. But it ended up sounding way better and just came naturally for me, so from that moment on I was the vocalist of the band.
My vocal influences are not really different from my musical ones. Vocally I look up to Helmuth (Belphegor), Nag (Tsjuder) and Corpsegrinder (Cannibal Corpse). I wouldn’t say that I really strive to sound like any of them, but they all inspire me to strengthen my own voice and style.
You are very busy with the new album Chaosophy. Can you explain a little bit about the source of inspiration for album number 2 and how it differs from your debut?
The source of inspiration for ‘Chaosophy’ was the concept of chaos in all its forms, in various cultures. We felt like our first album was more focused around nature, and this one was more centred on the darker, more chaotic side of life. It is ironic how we released it during one of the most chaotic times that our world has faced in recent years.
The Morbid Angel Connection?
Serge and I were at a Morbid Angel show and we met Scott and really just clicked together, and we mentioned that we needed a drummer and he was open to it. So after talking for a while and messaging, we decided to work together remotely (he lives on the West Coast, we live on the East Coast), and it has worked out great!
Did you feel any pressure to outdo yourselves? And how have you progressed musically and vocally from Esoterica?
We definitely felt pressure to make a record that was better than our debut and I think we all feel confident that we did just that. The song writing is better, the riffs are better, and my vocals I think are way better. I had time to fully develop my voice and my own style which I think shines on this record.
Did you get a lot of time to record and did you have any record company assistance?
Yes, we took as long as we wanted to record, which ended up being about 3 months total (2 months for us, and 1 month for Scott). We wanted everything to be perfect and exactly how we envisioned, so we took our time. We did not have any record company assistance.
Are you continually writing?
Not right now. We want to make sure the next album is fresh and doesn’t have the same energy that Chaosophy does, which is a risk if we write the albums too close together.
What are some of the lyrical concepts behind the album?
Obviously chaos in general, Shiva (Hinduism) and his trident which is a symbol of the left hand path and destruction, the goddess of death, Hel (Norse mythology), being your own god (Selbstgott), Ragnarok, and breaking the wheel of reincarnation.
Your music is raw, undiluted Black metal. What draws you to this particular style?
I personally will always prefer this style over the more polished and mainstream, black metal. I think this genre was created to be a raw style of music without a lot of frills or mainstream elements, and I think it should stay that way.
There is less death metal on Chaosophy, was this deliberate or just a natural progression?
We personally think it is a bit more death metal than ‘Esoterica’ just because of the complexity of the songs and the riffs. My vocals are also more death metal than black metal, which is why I think we fit under the ‘black/death’ or ‘blackened death metal’ label. It is all subjective to every listener though and what they consider black metal versus death metal.
What makes US Black metal so different from Its European Brethren?
I think usually US black metal bands don’t have the connection to their European roots and it shows in their music and energy. We feel very in touch with our roots and heritage and so I think that gives us a European feel to our music. We are also very influenced by more European Black Metal, and not particularly fans of USBM.
Is it hard for Automb to thrive in your local scene and are gigs regular?
I think we are well accepted in our scene although we prefer to not play here. The point of our band is to spread our message and its’ not really spreading if we just play in one city. We have played 99% of our shows outside of Pittsburgh, and we plan to keep it that way. We are focused on being a touring act, not a local band, and in the future we plan on just consistently touring.
What are your thoughts on commercial metal? And does it help/hinder the underground?
It depends on what subgenre of commercial metal it is. I generally don’t like the mainstream metal bands because I think a lot of times they are doing things to please record labels and keep their fans that have been there forever, and not really putting out the music they truly want to. It doesn’t seem genuine to me. But, I think that can benefit the underground in a way because a listener can go from not hearing genuine passion in mainstream metal, to listening to an underground band that is completely genuine and making music that comes from their soul and doesn’t have a record label’s influence.
Your top 5 albums/demos of all time?
Mayhem – “Deathcrush”
Dissection – “Reinkaos”
Wardruna - “Runaljod – Yggdrasil”
Mgła – “Exercises in Futility”
Darkthrone – “A Blaze in the Northern Sky”