is a Metalcore band from Tulsa, Oklahoma USA, whose musical style is a
combination of thrash metal and hardcore. The band has released three
albums, one on Solid State Records, one on Roadrunner Records, and one
on Century Media Records. Delving ever deeper into the loathsome and
hellish world of singer Mike Williams’ mind, The Agony Scene is firing
on all cylinders on its inspired and lovingly titled Century Media
debut, ‘Get Damned’ , produced by Andreas Magnusson (Black Dahlia
Murder, Scarlet) and set for a January 21 release date. If you missed
out on the first two albums, you’ll want to hear this third, most mature
and diverse offering from Tulsa, Oklahoma’s finest purveyors of
2006 the band parted ways with drummer Brent Masters, and invited the
newest member Ryan Folden. Featuring a new drummer, a new label home and
a renewed perspective, ‘Get Damned’ is as highly charged and personal a
recording as you will hear from The Agony Scene. From opener
“Barnburner" to the closing seconds of “Old Scratch", ‘Get Damned’ is
easily one of The Agony Scene’s more inspired recordings. While Williams
has never shied from the most dark and depraved corners buried beneath
the well-kept soil of society, he tackles the most ominous of subjects
on tracks like “Dance With Devils", “Rapture" and “Deliverance." Fellow
band mates Chris Emmons and Brian Hodges give Williams a heavy musical
palette with which to work, injecting the release with an onslaught of
venomous riffs while retaining a strong sense of melody.
revitalized sound and spanking new record in their arsenal, expect the
unexpected when The Agony Scene hits a town near you in support of its
best record to date, ‘Get Damned’. Therefore we had a little chat with
Mike Williams, so here we go.
album ‘Get Damned’ will be released in Europe in a couple of weeks, so
of course we’d like to ask you a couple of questions about it!
Go for it!
all, I’m not familiar with your band so could you tell me something
about The Agony Scene? How did this band get together, where does the
name “The Agony Scene” come from, what does it mean and could you tell
me something about your musical background?
on 2002. just a bunch of friends of friends who decided to form a metal
band. received a lot of attention at home (Tulsa Ok) and signed to Solid
State records. We went from there to Roadrunner for our second record
‘The Darkest Red’, then Century Media Records for our third album ‘ Get
Damned’! The Agony Scene is in reference to a painting of Jesus weeping
on the rock before he is taken off to be crucified.
you launch into writing the material for this album? Did ideas come
easily so that you just had to write them down or was it more of a
careful composing thing?
We wrote a
lot of these songs with a drum machine so that was a challenge. material
came fairly easily though. Lucky for us. We wanted to give it a more of
a punk rock vibe attitude wise. We wanted to make something we wanted to
listen to, so therefore it was very much a conscious decision.
Agony Scene had several line-up changes and each one has added its own
kind of sound, so how difficult was it to continue your original sound
on ‘Get Damned’ with only two original members left?
bad because we were trying new things and the two members who left also
wrote the first two records so we were fine.
you think are the main differences between your previous albums and ‘Get
really, much more aggressive musically and vocally on this one.
writing, what is the utmost important ingredient for a song according to
The Agony Scene? And is there any typical way that an Agony Scene song
comes into being?
we have a really traditional approach to songwriting in that we need it
to make sense when you listen to it.
responsible for the songs, is the music written independently of the
lyrics or do you try to reflect lyrical ideas through the music?
write all the lyrics, Chris Emmons and Brian Hodges write all the music.
We did try to fuse the music and lyrics on this new record more so than
on the last two. It sounds more deliberate I think than on the Darkest
Red or self titled.
the song writing – how can we imagine you work on new songs? What comes
first, lyrics or melodies? Is it like you sit down and write a new song
because you need more material now or do you wait until you get an idea?
there’s a riff and we build off of it until we have a song. We basically
jam until something works. Lyrics are a completely separate thing.
Written by myself to the melody of the riffs. “Barnburner” for sure, or
“ Rattle Me Bones” are my favorite songs on this record.
the recording process proceed, how much time did you spend on it and in
which studio did you record your latest album? And what made producer
Andreas Magnusson the perfect producer for ‘Get Damned’?
recorded for a month and a half. We recorded at red Planet studios in
Richmond VA. Andreas is a good friend of us and that made the process
fun, furthermore he’s way laid back and easy to work with and a fucking
genius. He's all over it. We really fed off of each other for ideas.
Damned’ is your third album and Century Media Records is your third
record company, so you switched more labels, more times than some bands
do in their entire career.. What’s the reason you switched so many
to discuss it, I just know that we are trouble.
you get a deal with Century Media Records? How is your relationship with
them? And do you have free reign as a band to do what you want
creatively or otherwise, or do they impose any rules on what you do?
have it any other way. We will always make the record that we want or do
the tours we want and don’t do the ones we don’t want haha. We are happy
now with Century media Records. I hope they are happy too, like I said
received any feedback on your album yet?
It’ s all
been good. People seem to be into it.
third party opinions (press, fans, etc.) on your music important to you?
Or are your music and band the only things that matter?
much do this for us, but we are glad people seem to get into it. It
makes me proud to do it for sure.
are you pleased with the outcome of the songs or would you have liked to
have changed anything in retrospective?
record I have no complaints, for the others there’s a list a mile long.
album has already been released some months ago in the US, have you
already launched into writing song for a new album?
but we're always throwing stuff around creatively.
songs and bands do you listen to?
Religion, Descendents, Black Flag,
metalcore scene or as we say ‘The New Wave Of American Heavy Metal’ in
general exploded in the last four or five years in the United States,
hundreds of bands seem to be popping up. So what is the difference
between The Agony Scene and other bands in this scene?
core would be what we describe ourselves as punk hardcore and metal.
better records than the others hahaha, just joking. We don’t really try
to be a metalcore band, it just happens.
your opinion on the ‘metalcore’ scene these days, what do you think
about the overload off this kind of bands at the moment and is there
anything missing in the scene?
Well in the
United States it’s on the way out and this faux grind bullshit is taking
over. It sucks, relevance is missing.
album has been your biggest musical influence, one that made you think
“this is what I want to do!”?
Kennedys ‘Plastic Surgery Disasters’ is my favorite record ever.
there any particular bands that have been a big influence for your song
writing, metal or otherwise?
Too many to
mention. haha I listen to so much different shit, it's hard to keep up.
you could choose three bands to get on stage with, who would they be?
Misfits/Danzig (already did it), The Stooges, Bad Religion.
be touring Europe in a couple of months, what can we expect from The
Agony Scene this tour?
mixture of material from our three records, and us to be pretty drunk
most of the time.
you see the future for The Agony Scene? what can we expect after your
European tour and do you think, for instance, that the band will still
exist ten years from now?
Strummer said "The future is unwritten".
anything left unmentioned, any last statement?
for your time!
Current Members :
Williams - Vocals
Emmons - Guitar
Hodges - Guitar
Chris Rye -
Burguiere - Vocals
Shannon - Bass
Stewart - Bass
Masters - Drums
Horwitz - Drums
Lloyd - Guitar
Grover - Bass
Pete Webb -
Scene (2003) Solid State Records
Red (2005) Roadrunner Records
Get Damned (2007) Century Media