Ankla - 21/09/2007

ANKLA was formed in 2001 by former Puya guitarist Ramón Ortiz, in his desire to break away from his previous band's nu metal style. The band independently released a self titled 7-track EP in 2002, produced by Stone Sour drummer Roy Mayorga. In April, 2006, the band announced that they had signed with Bieler Bros. Records. Their debut album ‘Steep Trails’ was produced by renowned producer Bob Marlette, and was released on July 25, 2006 in the USA.

On August 19, 2006, bassist Edgar Gonzalez suffered a seizure during a concert at Mokena, Illinois. The band later parted ways with Gonzalez due to his health concerns. In December, 2006, Ortíz announced that J.P. Soars (formerly of Divine Empire and Malevolent Creation) would take over bass duties full time. In 2007 Ankla were part of the 2007 Ozzfest tour as a second stage act.


The music style of the band can be described as mixture of "thrash metal, metalcore and death metal" mixed with a touch of Latin American music". The band describes their style of music as "Latin metalcore".



Recently ‘Steep Trails’ came out in Europe, a year after the release in America, so time for Metal-Experience to ask the band some questions!!!


Ankla was formed in 2001, but you released your debut album 2006. Did this 5 year gap influence your style or did you actually need this time to create your style?

In those 5 years, we played a lot of live gigs and we wrote a lot of songs and that's why it took us so long to put the record out. We wanted the best music, and the band to be at our best level.


Your album came out in the US in 2006, but was just released some weeks ago in Europe, why did we have to wait so long?

We were looking for the right distribution.


How did you launch into writing the material for ‘Steep Trails’, did ideas come easily so that you just had to write them down or was it more of a careful composing thing?

Between Ramon and I, we wrote the songs and the ideas came from our music background. Salsa to hard core, mixed with metal and death metal. We wrote lots of things at home and brought it to the studio to work with the band.


Did you have a certain idea of what you wanted to do on ‘Steep Trails’, any elements or styles you definitely wanted to have on the album?

Yes. we wanted to have the strongest, most brutal, metal record, this was our main goal and it was a conscious decision to do.


Who was responsible for writing the songs and the lyrics for your album?

Ramon and I were responsible, the main items from the songs are politics, religion, and personal feelings.  


In song writing, what is according to Ankla the utmost important ingredient for a song?

Honestly, each and every song is how we were feeling at the moment of writing each song.


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


Yes. nothing in life is easy. We needed to fight for our dreams. It doesn't matter how impossible it looks, believe in your dreams and don't give it up. Step ahead.


It’s about a year after you released your debut album, how do you feel about it now?

We are satisfied and very happy about the outcome.


Did you already launched into writing some new songs, if so can you tell us something about that.

Yes. we have some news songs and we are starting to play them at some concerts to see how is the reaction is.


You recently did the Ozzfest tour in the Us, how did it go among all those big bands?

It was the best thing we have done. the tour was amazing. All the bands on the tour were great, we had a blessing.


What can we expect from Ankla in the near future, any touring plans yet?

We got the Bieler Bros. tour in the USA entitled “The Great American Rampage”  coming up in October and this tour will end in December and there are plans for a tour in Europe next year.



Ok, now some questions to enable our readers to get to know you a little better.


How did you get involved in the music business?

The music business was my dream since I was 14 years old. I moved from Brazil to America in 2000 to make my dream come true.


What songs and bands do you listen to these days?

From Damian Marley to Scar Symmetry, Madball to old school bands from the 80's like Obituary, Death, Carcass, and S.O.D.


Is there anything you like to do besides your job in the band?

Yes. I work as a manager for some bands.


What is your opinion on the heavy music scene these days, is there anything missing?

Yes, more lead guitar and original bands – each band with their own personality and not cloning each other.


Which album has been your biggest musical influence, one that made you think “this is what I want to do!”?

Slayer - Raining Blood

Ozzy - Blizzard Of Ozz

Megadeth - Peace Sells

Sick Of It All - Just Look Around


Okay, if you could choose three bands to get on stage with, who would they be?

Original Sepultura, Pantera and Death.


Is here anything you’d still like to share with us?

Play music from your heart and soul and thanks so much for your time and all your help. that means a lot to us.



Ikaro Santana



Ankla Are:

Ikaro Stafford Santana – Vocals

Ramón Ortiz – Guitar

Tony Castaneda – Bass

Pepe Clarke Magańa – Drums

Oscar Santiago – Percussion


Former members:

Edgar Gonzalez – Bass



Steep Trails (2006)