3 Inches Of Blood - 19/08/2009

3 INCHES OF BLOOD is a Canadian heavy metal band from in Vancouver, British Columbia, which was formed in 1999.The band was highly influenced by the bands involved with the New Wave of British Heavy Metal of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Their sound is also very thrash-influenced and contains major elements (namely vocals) of early death metal and black metal bands. Before 3 INCHES OF BLOOD came into being, members Cam Pipes and Justin Hagberg were in a black metal band named Allfather.


The group initially performed with only Jamie Hooper on vocals before the addition of Cam Pipes. Hooper, Sunny Dhak and Bobby Froese got together to do a one-off reunion gig for an old group of theirs, however, things went so well they decided to continue under a new moniker. Pipes heard their demo EP at the house of Hot Hot Heat keyboardist Steve Bays, a longtime friend and former bandmate. He was originally asked to add some vocals to the band's already-recorded demo, ‘Sect of the White Worm’, and was welcomed as a permanent member after the results proved to the band's liking. Their debut album ‘Battlecry Under a Wintersun’ was recorded in 2002 and released in cooperation with the Teenage Rampage and Fashion Before Function labels. It was later remastered and re-released by the band under their own label entitled Minion Music. This release went by almost unnoticed until the band's UK distribution label decided to put them on as a support slot for a tour with platinum rock band The Darkness. This exposure gained them much critical attention and acclaim in the world of underground metal, and they were signed up by major label subsidiary Roadrunner Records in 2004.


Roadrunner put out an advertising blitz, and the track "Deadly Sinners" from the band's second release ‘Advance and Vanquish’ appeared on numerous sampler CDs, compilations, and even a video game (Tony Hawk's Underground 2) creating a huge press hype for the band that caused their popularity to skyrocket, with a slot on 2005's Road Rage tour in August (with bands like Machine Head and Chimaira) gaining them many new fans. The band wrote their entire third studio album in Tacoma, Washington and performed their new songs at various places in the vicinity of Washington. By December 2006, the band had begun to record material for their follow-up album at the Armoury Studios of their hometown, and revealed that it would be titled ‘Fire Up the Blades’, with Joey Jordison of Slipknot as producer. During the 2007 Ozzfest Tour, Jamie Hooper was unable to sing with the band as he was experiencing throat problems, and was warned by doctors that he may damage his voice permanently if he did not rest it. The screamed vocals were (and continue to be) performed by guitarist Justin Hagberg. Jamie Hooper wouldl not perform with the band for the whole 2007-08 year.


The world is eagerly awaiting the triumphant return of one of the biggest defenders of traditional heavy metal, 3 INCHES OF BLOOD, and the anticipation continues to build to epic proportions. The stunning new album, ‘Here Waits Thy Doom’, was tracked in Seattle’s Sound House Recordings with renowned producer Jack Endino (High On Fire) and is soon to be hailed as the gospel of all things heavy.



It seems there is much to talk about and so we tracked down guitar player Shane Clark to ask him some questions, here you can read what he had to say to the readers of Metal-experience.


Congratulations on your new album ‘Here Waits Thy Doom’ which will be out soon, of course we’d like to ask you a couple of questions about it. 


How did you launch into writing material for ‘Here Waits Thy Doom’ and how much time did you spend on the songs? 


Shane: We had three songs that were around for a while but we essentially wrote the album in the two months before we recorded it. We wrote 5 days a week and it’s the most focused and productive the band had ever been.


What approach did you take to make this album, did you go for a more raw exposition.. or something more reminiscent of your previous other works, or something all together different?


Shane: Our approach was much like ‘Fire Up the Blades’ in the way that we didn't follow a strict formula. Justin and I just wrote straight up metal songs that we would listen to. That being said, we have broad musical tastes so there are peaks and valleys on the album, from fast pummeling songs to Rainbow type rock.


Did ideas come easily so that you just had to write them down or was it more of a careful composing thing?


 Shane: The songs were composed for the most part carefully, but there were a few songs that came quick and easy in a day. It’s never the same with each song.


What comes first, lyrics or melodies?


Shane: That is Cam's department, but what I gather is sometimes it’s the melody first and sometimes it’s the other way around depending on the song.


What were the goals you had in mind when you started to record ‘Here Waits Thy Doom’, any elements you definitely wanted to have on the album? Was it a conscious decision to do it this way? 


Shane: I think one thing that happened unconsciously was the very solid and memorable chorus type parts that were absent on the last one. I think that has a lot to do with Cam being more upfront in the vocalist department. 



Could you please describe the implications of the title ‘Here Waits Thy Doom’, what does it stand for and is there a special meaning behind it?


Shane: I think it is something with an open ended meaning that could have different meaning for anyone. There is some mystery there that we find appealing. 


Can you elaborate on the lyrics?


Shane: The lyrics are a little more broad I would say, again this is Cam's department but I think he did a great job in the realms of fantasy and story telling mashed in with mythology. That’s what I get out of it anyway. 


Can you give us a little background about the songs on the album, is there a story behind them?


Shane: The songs we wrote together have a common glue to them because we feel that we overcame many obstacles over the past couple of years and we wrote them with passion and focus.


Why did you choose to record covers of Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Blue Oyster Cult and Zeke songs?


Shane: These are songs that are some of our favorites of all time. We listen to a lot of music together in the Van and all three of these bands are among our all time favorites.


How much time did you spend in the studio? 

Shane: We wrote the album in two months and recorded it in three weeks.


The album was produced by Jack Endino, what made him the perfect man for the job? 


Shane: Jack has recorded many bands that we admire and we wanted to get a very natural sound for the record so he was at the top of the list. We wanted certain things that were specific and these are things that he does brilliantly. 

In which things/songs on the new album can one clearly hear your vision and ideas?


Shane: I would say you hear Justin and I writing together as more of a team mostly, but you can hear justin's style on songs such as “Rock in Hell”, “Snake Fighter” and “Silent Killer”, while songs like “Battles and Brotherhood”, “Great Glacier” and “Execution Tank” are more my natural style. Ash did an amazing job on the album and has a great feel throughout, he is a very inventive drummer and is great with the arranging. 



What do you think are the main differences between your previous album ‘Fire Up the Blades’ and ‘Here Waits Thy Doom’?


Shane: There are many differences between them both. Starting from the writing, this time was much more focused because the lineup for the first time shared a common vision. Recording wise, we went for a more natural sounding 70's metal inspired recording.


What is the utmost important ingredient for a song?


 Shane: A riff that kicks you in the balls.


Do you have any favourites on the album?


Shane: Not yet, I still look at the album as a whole but favorites come and go as you start to play them live.


Are third party opinions (press, fans, etc.) about your music important to you? Or are your music and band the only things that matter?


Shane: Our fans are very important to us,  but it all comes down to making music for the sake of making music. That’s what got you your fans in the first place. 


Overall, are you pleased with the outcome of the songs or would you have liked to have changed anything in retrospective? Which element of the CD are you most proud of?


Shane: I have to say I'm proud of the album as a whole piece. As a musician or artist you have to look at a piece and let go at some point and if you don't like something down the road you try and do better the next time around.


Can you tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of things that motivate you in your writing, your poetry and your lyrics?


Shane: Music and art inspire my music ( Cam writes the lyrics ) I like the escapism of our lyrics, it’s like a book, you use your imagination.  


With several albums under your belt, how far has you career surpassed your original dreams and what would you say is the most rewarding part of being in the band?


Shane: I don't think we've surpassed our dreams because we feel we are living our deam of just playing music all the time for people all over the place. We work hard and the most rewarding part is seeing hard work pay off.



What is your opinion on the metal scene these days? What do you think about the overload of bands at the moment and is there anything missing in the scene?


Shane: I think the metal scene is better than ever, but I mean true underground music. There will always be bands in the limelight doing the fad thing, but extreme music whether it’s Traditional Metal, Doom, Symphonic Black Metal etc.. there will always be bands pushing the envelope and creating quality.


Could you respond to the following terms in just one word or sentence:


Metal : Life

Underground : Potatoes

Internet : Addiction

Religion : Theater 

Politics : Theater

The Netherlands : Majestic

Canada :  Home


What can we expect from 3 Inches Of Blood in the near future, any touring plans for Europe?


Shane: When the album comes out we will hit the road in the states with In Flames, do our own thing and then tour Europe with Black Dahlia Murder in the winter probably.


Where do you see 3 Inches Of Blood going within the next couple of years, and where do you see your musical direction going for the next album?


Shane: The next album is ways away so we'll see where we're at when we get there. The next few years will include touring and staying on the road as much as possible playing for the people.


Anything left to say to our readers?


Shane: Listen to  Nude with Boots- Melvins, it’s really good


Thanks for your time,

Eugene Straver




Cam Pipes – Vocals (2001 – present)

Justin Hagberg – Guitar (2004 – present), Vocals (2007 – present)

Shane Clark – Guitar (2004 – present)

Ash Pearson – Drums (2007 – present)

Former members:

Geoff Trawick – Drums (1999 – 2004)

Rich Trawick – Bass (1999 – 2004)

Bobby Froese – Guitar (1999 – 2004)

Sunny Dhak - Guitar (1999 - 2004)

Matt Wood – Drums (2004 – 2005)

Brian Redman – Bass (2004 – 2006)

Alexei Rodriguez – Drums (2005 – 2007)

Jamie Hooper – Screams (1999 – 2008)

Nick Cates – Bass (2006 – 2009)



Battlecry Under a Wintersun (2002)

Advance and Vanquish (2004)

Fire Up the Blades (2007)

Here Waits Thy Doom (2009)



Sect of the White Worm (2001)

Trial of Champions (2007)