Pennsylvanian metalcore band What Lies Below swung into the metalcore scene with their debut EP Destinations, released last year. The six-track included technical metalcore singles like ‘Canvas‘ and ‘Erased‘ which have turned some heads in the scene. The quartet are absolutely flying at the moment, and we got the opportunity to not only chat with them but to premiere their brand new single ‘Odyssey‘.
The new track is What Lies Below‘s first single off their forthcoming sophomore EP, which is slated for release this Autumn (or Spring in Australia). With the release of ‘Odyssey‘, What Lies Below has also welcomed Jonah Luteman and Sam Hart into the band, so give them some love.
‘Odyssey’ encompasses the next era of progressive metalcore. It contains a level of freshness that you really need to search to find, and when you find it, you don’t move so you don’t lose it. The three-minute single delivers an equalised clean and unclean vocal effort, packed with crunchy and technical riffs. The uncleans are a personal winner for me as they’re incredibly sharp and hit you viscerally.
Without further ado, check out our get-to-know-you session with What Lies Below, below!
So excited to chat about What Lies Belows’ brand new single ‘Odyssey’! What can you tell me about the track?
Odyssey is emotional, vibey, and heavy. It scopes everything we’ve been as a band this far, plus we added some new elements. The lyrics are about the spiritual journey of longing to be freed from whatever has you tied up. There’s not many positive notes, but that’s how it feels when you’re going through something like that. Odyssey is the first of three singles we will be releasing this year, and it is an emotional cut similar to what you heard on Destinations.
‘Odyssey’ captures a lot of eclectic metalcore styles, and as an Aussie I’m hearing a lot of Australian metalcore influences from bands like Northlane and such, but where do you get your influences?
Northlane is definitely a massive influence for us! I’d say Thornhill and Make Them Suffer are a couple of other Australian bands that have as well. If I had to name three bands to scope our main influences I would go with Northlane, ERRA, and vocally, Currents.
Obviously ‘Odyssey’ is not the first release from What Lies Below, as you’ve had a successful EP last year called Destinations. Whilst you remain in the metalcore sphere, I’m hearing an evolving sound between the EP and new single – what would be your comments on that?
It’s just the natural progression of that sound mixed with adding new things we like and heard. When we sat down and started writing these songs we didn’t have a clear idea of what we wanted, we just sat down and wrote. It was super natural. We were in the same “mindset” that we were in when writing Destinations, just with new influences to add to the flavour. One big thing for me, personally, is I wanted to expand on my vocal range. Odyssey is the first song I’m singing and doing real lows on. We will have more of that. Every release I want us to get better and better as musicians and make the difference noticeable.
What Lies Below are from Pennsylvania, and I noted that it’s the same town as Tallah, and although that probably seems like an ignorant observation – what’s the Pennsylvanian metal scene like, and has it impacted your music?
It absolutely has! It feels like almost every tour rolls through Philly, and the Philly crowds always pop off. It gives us a lot more confidence knowing that the fans in this area aren’t just normal fans. I feel like they are super passionate about the genre and want to love and discover new bands. There’s not too many bands from Harrisburg but we are good friends with If Not For Me and they have been doing some really cool things lately.
We grew up 45 minutes from Lancaster, PA, home of August Burns Red and Jake has been an incredible mentor for us. Also from Lancaster we have Ricky Armellino (Ice Nine Kills, HAWK) who besides being an incredible musician and producer, can answer literally any question under the sun. Ricky is a god to our local scene. It’s just full of kind people willing to help without question. I honestly don’t think I’ve ever talked to anyone in the scene who wasn’t kind. We’re all in this together.
The funny thing is we have never played a show as What Lies Below. Our first song came out March 13th, 2020, which was two days before the shutdown happened. During that time we took our time writing and recording Destinations. The thought of shows was a backburner. When the time came around to start playing we had a member change so we’ve been getting the new guys up to speed on everything. We highly look forward to finally being able to play.
To what extent are you enjoying the current state of metalcore? Do you think it’s oversaturated or just right?
I love the current state of metalcore. Household name bands such as Northlane, ERRA, Like Moths to Flames etc. have been killing just like they did all last decade. We’re seeing a lot more diversity come into the genre with bands like Loathe and you have the throwback bands such as SeeYouSpaceCowboy just bringing more life and diversity into the genre again. I believe metalcore is in a very good place and hopefully it continues that upward trend.
Currently, we are writing a new EP and we’re releasing three new singles over the course of summer and fall that won’t be on the EP. We want to expand our sound and dive in to find out exactly who we are. We want to show the world what we can really do. Other than that, we’re just going to be preparing for the loads of shows we plan to play over the second half of the year.
Welcome and thanks for checking us out! You guys are the life of a thriving scene in Australia. We cannot wait to visit and rip shoey’s with all of you. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, whatever you use to stay in touch with us! Much more is coming soon.
Interview by Ricky Aarons @rickysaul90
What Lies Below is Andrew Watson (vocals), Mike Watson (guitar/vocals),
Sam Hart (guitar) and Jonah Luteman (drums).
Pre-Save/Stream ‘Odyssey‘ here
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