When this new song from The Last Martyr landed in my inbox, it took every ounce of strength inside of me to not share it with you because of how fucking gooood it was. The band are back with ‘Like A Ghost‘ which sees the four-piece head in a more prog/metal/djent direction and to be honest with you, I’m so glad they headed down that path because this is instantly a big step up from their Creatrix EP they released back in April (our review here).
We grabbed frontwoman Monica Strut for a quick chat about the new song and their new lineup to get you caught up on everything that’s happened and what’s yet to come…
Congratulations on the new song, it sounds fucking huuuge. First of all, where’d the inspiration for this one come from?
Thank you so much! Lyrically the whole song is really a conversation. It’s based around a number of conversations I’ve had with other musicians who have kind of been chewed up and spat out within the music industry, as well as with myself. These are people that are super talented but have lost their passion and drive along the way or felt the need to go in a different direction with their life due to external pressures. I always sensed a deep resounding sadness in these moments which was being suppressed and it really pissed me off! The world needs artists and people living their authentic life right now
In my professional life I work as a digital marketer and have been a music journalist for many years, so helping bands stay on track by educating and empowering them with knowledge is something that is really important to me. I think the motivation behind my business has crossed over into ‘Like a Ghost’ in many ways. There are so many messages I hope people take away from this song but the main one is the fact that mastering our own mindset is key in achieving our goals, no matter what they are.
It’s a massive step up from your Creatrix EP you released earlier in the year (which, mind you, was reallly good too). Where’d the drive come from to up the ante with this one?
We went through a pretty big line-up change a few months ago where we lost a couple of band members. Our drummer Vinny was sent to Amsterdam for work (although he’s actually coming back to rejoin the band early next year which is pretty rad). But our original guitarist and bassist decided this band wasn’t for them anymore so Ben (guitars) and I really had to become a super strong team through it all and decide where we wanted to take this band.
Working with Chris Lalic (Windwaker) was amazing and he really pushed us out of our comfort zone. We literally sat down and went through 5 demos and this track wasn’t one we were even considering recording. I wrote all the melodies in the studio and went home each night madly refining the lyrics. This track was an opportunity for a fresh start in a way and to redefine where we wanted to go as a band. We’re really proud of how it’s turned out.
It’s a great genre-crossing offering you’ve got metal/core elements, djenty/proggy undertones and the contrasting melodic/heavy vocals. Are you still finding your style or is this what you’ve been aiming for?
To be honest, we’ve always been finding our style! Right from the day that this band formed we never had any pre-determined sound we wanted to go for. However, the approach to this song was more analytical in many ways rather than the melting pot of our other tracks.
We’re influenced by different genres, Ben is especially prog-influenced and I’m a metalcore girl however the only rules we have ever had is that we want whatever we write to be heavy and melodic. Can’t say that this is the style we’ve been aiming for as we’ve never aimed anywhere in particular, but it’s definitely our favourite track we’ve put out so far for many reasons!
You’ve got a new lineup too, how have the latest additions impacted on the band?
It’s not so much a new line-up but rather a few people have left! But we have been playing live with Rob Brens of Mirrors/I Built the Sky for the time being until Vin comes back which has been amazing as he’s just such a solid player and dude and it’s meant we haven’t had to take a break from shows. Matty (bass) leaving was really recent and his final show was earlier this month, hence why he’s still in the photos (also we love him and his hair is luxurious). But we have just started working with an amazing new bassist and long-time friend who we’ll probably announce soon! He’s going to be a very strong addition to the project.
The past few months have been a rollercoaster behind the scenes personally and professionally, but everything has worked out. The biggest thing to have come out of this line-up change is how Ben and I have really banded together. We are so proud that we’ve been able to come out the other side more solid as a team, more determined than ever and with a song we love
Slowly but surely you’re making a name for yourself in Australia’s heavy music scene, what’s on the horizon that fans or newcomers should keep an eye/ear out for?
Thank you! We have some big goals for next year but what you can definitely expect is a new track from us early 2020 and some more shows!
How long until we get to see you all up and down the east coast?
Yep, this is definitely on the cards for next year! Bring it on!
Any final words?
The only sure way to fail is to give up. If you’re looking for a sign, this is it. Also, thank you for your support so far. If our music resonates with you in any way, hit us up in the DMs!
Keep your eyes on The Last Martyr, they’re going places!
Interview by Browny @brownypaul
The Last Martyr support Bare Bones in Melb Next Month!