is an American thrash metal band. The band was formed in 2004 and signed
with Century Media Records after the record label saw them perform at a
local show in LA. WARBRINGER did not invent their own vein of metal.
They were preceded by great acts such as Slayer, Exodus, Testament,
Anthrax and Metallica – but over the course of their previous two
albums, they have managed to construct songs that are equal in terms of
ferocity and finesse, and in doing so, they have created a sound that is
distinctly their own. With the release of ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’,
WARBRINGER are poised to take their rightful place at the table
alongside the big boys.
The music on ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’ was created in the studio but was
born from years of relentless touring. True road warriors, the members
of WARBRINGER have lived their lives in a van together for months on
end, playing an average of 300 shows a year since the release of their
debut album, ‘War Without End’, in 2008. In the process they have built
an organic, diehard fanbase, sharing the stage with such metal stalwarts
as Exodus, Nile, Suicide Silence, Megadeth, Napalm Death, Suffocation,
All Shall Perish, Hatebreed, Testament, Obituary, Overkill, Halford,
Kreator and Nevermore.
Once ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’ hits the streets, the band will be back doing
what they do best – playing live. Their blistering attack is a sight to
behold, and with three albums’ worth of material to choose from, the
band is prepared to take the step from being a support band to becoming
a headliner in their own right. Peers take note, heroes check your
rear-views, because that van you see coming up behind you just might be
the future of metal.
So, in order to find out all there is to know about Warbringer’s latest
album we tracked down John Laux (guitars) to answer some
questions. Here you can read what he had to say to the readers of Metal-Experience.com.
First of all, how are you doing? Congratulations on your new album
‘Worlds Torn Asunder’ which will be released soon, of course we’d like
to ask you a couple of questions about it.
Thanks Eugene! This is John Laux, axe slinger from Warbringer. Great
questions, it was a pleasure to work on them!
A couple of years ago we talked about your previous album ‘Waking Into
Nightmares’, can you give us a little update of what’s been happening
since that release?
toured the living hell out of that record and our bodies. Nearly 300
gigs a year for 2 years! We played with some great bands, including
Kreator, Exodus, Skeletonwitch, Nevermore, Obituary, Megadeth, and
Evile. By the end of the touring cycle we were beat. We took a big
break from the road to recharge our batteries and to spend half a year
working on the new record. This was the most time we have ever had to
work on a record. We could finally do some pre-production and give the
songs time to grow and develop naturally. Now the record is ready to be
released and we are very excited to hit the road this fall and on to
Which approach did you choose to create ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’, did you
go for a more raw exposition.. or something more reminiscent of your
previous other works, or something altogether different?
We are constantly trying to refine our approach.
Aggression and energy has always been a dominate characteristic of our
music. For us, it is very important to give every song a different
character – lyrics, riffs, themes, and dynamics. We are all influenced
by talented NWOBHM, Death, Black, Grind, and Hardcore Punk bands as much
as our favorite Thrash bands. The influences may be subtle, but I think
those differences keep our music engaging and interesting, especially
when we are performing for a live audience. If we don’t feel satisfied
creatively by our music, how would we expect anyone else to enjoy it.
What was the songwriting process like for ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’? For
instance, does someone come in with just a riff, or with complete songs?
Ultimately we all work together. Since ‘Waking’ Adam and
I have split the riff writing process. Usually we work out a few riffs
in our own time. Once we have a skeleton song structure, we start
fleshing out the song with the rest of the band. We argue frequently,
however in the end everyone’s voice is heard and this music belongs to
everyone in the band. I think that is very important. If it’s a good
idea, it’s worth fighting for. If you can’t really defend its purpose,
why use it? We all have the same goals. Personally I find writing music
with the band to be the most satisfying aspect of playing together in
the first place.
What were the goals you had in mind when you started to record ‘Worlds
Torn Asunder’, any elements you definitely wanted to include on the
We wanted to step up to the plate and blow our last
record out of the water. We understand the biggest criticism of the New
Wave of Thrash movement is that nothing original is being done. We
believe that in a live atmosphere, thrash is the purest and most
aggressive form of music created by man. There is plenty of life and
room for experimentation. ‘Waking into Nightmares’ was a very important
release for us. We showed many heavy-handed critics that we could write
about more interesting subjects than just the horrors of war and that
musically we had a wide sonic range of influences to exploit and develop
in our own personal way. With ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’ you have more of the
same creative development mixed in with the raw sound people expect from
us. For example, when I started writing “Demonic Ecstasy” my goal was
create a menacing wall of sludge riff style that Isis and Cult of Luna
are known for. I doubt very many people will catch it, it’s not very
technical, but It feels different and adds a lot of depth and character
to the new record.
After the release of your previous album ‘Waking into Nightmares’, a
number of line-up changes took place. Did this have an influence on the
Totally, touring is hard, physically, mentally, and
emotionally taxing. We had parted ways with drummer Nic Ritter and
bassist Ben Bennett due to circumstantial disagreements. We are all
still friends and the separations were mutual. My brother Andy Laux was
asked to rejoin on bass and we asked Carlos Cruz from Hexen to drum on
our new record. Originally we only planned on using Carlos as a studio
musician, however after a few rehearsals it was obvious we had a great
chemistry with the new line-up. We were all focused on the same goals
and got along very well. Carlos is also a very talented musician. I
would like to point out that he wrote “Echoes From The Void”. We were
really excited to find out he could play guitar so well! Like any good
drummer, he had a lot to say from the get-go and Carlos and Andy’s
presence influenced the new record as heavily as anyone else in the
Could you describe the implications of the title ‘Worlds Torn Asunder’,
what does it stand for and is there a special meaning behind it?
The concept behind the lyrics and themes for 'Worlds Torn
Asunder' is the decline of our existing world at the hands of the human
race. The imagery is of our world literally being torn apart. The astral
Atlas-like presence is not supporting the world, instead he is depicted
draining the earth of life and essence. This was a tricky concept
because we wanted the cover to look unique, tasteful, and original.
Generally speaking our philosophical and personal outlooks on mankind
are bleak. I think anyone’s opinions could be after the never-ending
list of atrocities ‘civilized’ men continue to inflict on each other.
Can you tell me a little more about the lyrics, did anything in
particular inspire you? Where do you get your inspiration from?
At this point it is very important to the band and to
Kevill, the author of the lyrics, to find new topics for every track. We
quickly realized after ‘War Without End’ that it was a bad idea to
continue writing songs with similar motifs and imagery. It was just
another step in the band’s evolution. Now we draw our lyrics from a
number of personal experiences, science and literature. We push the
subject matter over the top so the themes fit the feel of the nature of
How important is it to you that people pay attention to the lyrics apart
from listening to the music?
On the record they are very important. A band’s message
means everything. Most non-musicians always focus heavily on the vocals.
I am proud to work with Kevill because for a ‘scream and shouter’ his
vocals are very clear and easy to understand. He enunciates well and has
a venomous and commanding voice. Live, it’s not so important to me. I
think metal for many people is a form of escapism from their ordinary
and possibly stressful lives. We are not singing about heart break;
people come to our shows to get parted with reality, get lost in the
music, and let loose in a mosh pit. While it’s true we do not attempt to
pinpoint major social or political events, there is a very serious,
relevant, and honest nature to our lyrics.
Can you give us a little background information
on the songs, is there a story behind them?
I had the idea for ‘Shattered Like Glass’ after I
experienced a repetitive strain injury. The extreme themes echo how
fragile the human body is and our own fears of death. “Future Ages
Gone” came from an article Kevill read on the human singularity theory.
It’s a very real and well-discussed topic on evidence that the
exponential growth of technology is poised to surpass mankind. If you
purchase the record you’ll notice in the booklet that every song has a
caption written by Kevill describing the concepts behind the lyrics.
How did the recording process proceed, did you work differently this
time than you did with your previous works? How much time did you spend
in the studio?
I want to point out that we wrote ‘Waking’ in 2 months
and recorded it rushed in a studio in less than 12 days! This was very
stressful and it was hard to prepare and execute because we were
sandwiched between tours! I mentioned earlier that this time through we
took a breather from each other. Refocused, we jump started the process
with a clear head at the beginning of 2011. We spent 6 months working on
the songs. We recorded the sessions and would play them back a few
times. We made suggestions, alterations, and repeated the process until
we were all satisfied with the final result. We spent an entire month in
the studio. I thought we were spending too much money and time, but we
wanted a bigger, professional record and ended up feeling just as
stressed and strapped for time as before. Attempting to perfect anything
is very difficult if you plan on finishing in your lifetime.
The album was produced by Steve Evetts, can you tell us about working
Yes, we made a conscious decision to think outside of the
box and look for someone with real experience producing organic modern
records that don’t feel overproduced and unnatural. We really aren’t
happy with many modern metal records because every drum hit is
triggered, sampled, and adjusted. Every guitar is reamped and even
second tweaked to mechanical perfection. Steve Evetts (Sepultura, The
Dillinger Escape Plan) has had decades of experience with anything from
traditional metal bands to hardcore and pop punk bands. After we talked
to him a few times, we knew we had the same attitudes and that he would
be perfect for the job. I think it was a wise choice to work with
someone many people would never expect us to work with. We are very
proud of the results.
In which elements/songs on the new album can one clearly hear Steve’s
vision and ideas?
Well, the structures were all in place when we started.
Steve’s influence, however , can be heard every second of the entire
record. Steve believed in getting the magic all on the original take.
What you hear on the record is exactly what we heard tracking and
nothing is copy pasted. The drums are completely real and the sound is
easily the biggest and best we’ve achieved. He pushed our performances
to our breaking points time and time again. There were times he had us
playing riffs for hours, once we finished, he would have us double track
them. We also had some very unique approaches to vocal effects. Many of
the delays and reverbs you hear on the vocals came from Steve running
Kevill’s signal into guitar pedals, at times, even through my guitar
What do you think are the main differences between your debut album ‘War
Without End’ and the new one?
After 4 years of heavy and consistent touring we have all
aged and developed as musicians. After working with so many great
touring bands we have also developed a deeper understanding of our craft
and consciousness of our goals. Every time we hit the studio, we took a
different approach to avoid necessary mistakes that had to be made in
the first place. We wrote many of the songs from ‘War Without End’ when
we were in high school! I am not crazy about the production of that
record and even our performances. However I wouldn’t change a thing. It
was a huge stepping stone for the band.
With several albums under your belt, how far has Warbringer surpassed
your original dreams and what would you say is the most rewarding part
of being in the band?
The experiences and connections made on the road. The
honor to have opened for so many great bands we grew up with in our
stereos, and the satisfaction of recording and releasing our music and
our vision for our fans to enjoy!
Which song is your favorite one to play live? And which song do you find
the most challenging one to play live?
“Living in a Whirlwind” is my favorite. Strangely enough it was the only
true collaboration between Kevill and myself from the second record. We
were very stressed out with each other from the road, and I think many
of the tensions played out positively whilst writing the song. Live,
it’s got truck loads of energy and it’s loaded with hooks and
interesting transitions. It always gets a crowd moshing and I think it’s
an ultimate example of a high adrenaline Warbringer song.
What have been the highlights and low points throughout your career?
Touring in Japan, Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore was
unreal. I couldn’t believe I got to travel so far from the western world
and find die-hard fans ready to have a great time at a metal concert!
There have been a few low points. At this point there are 4 original
members in the band. We had to learn how to chill-out and give each
other personal space on the road. When you’re trapped in a van for 3
months, it can be difficult. The lowest point was watching my extended
family get into a fight and screw up an important tour. We got over it.
It happens, and I have seen much worse. We were professional enough
never to carry any of it onto the stage.
Could you respond to the following terms in just one word or sentence:
Thrash: Pure Heavy Fucking Metal
Underground : Dostoevsky (Notes from the underground)
Internet : The end and future of mankind
Religion : No Thanks.
Politics: See Psychopathy: A mental disorder characterized primarily by
a lack of empathy and remorse, shallow emotions, egocentricity, and
The Netherlands : The Redlight District :- The only place in the world
where Illegal drugs and whores are easier to find than a cold beer.
Honorable mention: Martin Van Drunen
United States : Stolen land
What is your opinion on the metal scene these days? What do you think of
the overload of bands at the moment and is there anything missing in the
I think the internet is an interesting phenomenon. On the
one hand, It has connected the youth around the world . People from any
neck of the globe have access to the same information and I feel like
cultural divides have been torn apart. People are connected to the same
source of information now. On the other hand, internet piracy has
cheapened the value of just about every art form. The transition has
been long and painful for the artist and the industry. It’s great that
talented bands with “out-of-pocket” budgets can generate grass-roots
momentum. There are also less inspired bands that have watered down just
about every style possible. It’s important that the NWOTM musicians
continue to inspire and competitively push each other forward so that we
can leave behind the best records possible -- records than will stand
the test of time.
Which goals did you have when the band started out and how do those
goals stand now?
The goals are the same. We wanted to push the band as far
as it would go. We never expected to create a full-time every day job
out of the band. At this point I believe anything is possible. We are
still moving up the ranks. We will continue touring, developing the
band, and writing Heavy Fucking Metal for our fans to enjoy.
What does the future hold for Warbringer?
Plenty of tours! We are days away from our first North
American tour. It feels like ages since we’ve toured the US as our last
was supporting Nevermore in Nov. 2010. This time we go out on our first
headlining tour, with Lazarus AD, Landmine Marathon and Diamond Plate
opening. A week later we head back to Europe doing some of our own shows
until we support Arch Enemy; so we’ll see you in Amsterdam. We are still
booking and it’s a possibility we may play another gig in Holland. Our
Facebook is a great place to connect personally with the band and keep
track of any future tours and breaking news!
Anything left to say to our readers, here is your chance?
Thank you to all of our fans for their support! You guys
rule, STAY HEAVY!
Current members :
John Kevill - Vocals (2004–present)
Adam Carroll - Guitar (2004–present)
John Laux - Guitar (2004–present)
Carlos Cruz - Drums (2011–present)
Andy Laux - Bass (2004–2008, 2009–present)
Former members :
Ritter - drums (2008–2011)
Ryan Bates - drums (2004–2008)
Bennet - Bass (2008–2009)
Studio albums :
2008 - War Without End
2009 - Waking into Nightmares
2011 - Worlds Torn Asunder
2006 - One By One, the Wicked Fall