Cape Town, South Africa: something which has been brewing slowly in the background for many months is seeking to burst out in short order, starting this weekend with the release of a first music video, ‘Kiss The Ground’, by Last One Alive. The first viewing will take place tomorrow night at Mercury Live along with a live performances by the band, plus support acts Stoker and Verona Walls. Whilst the band is not exactly new, they remain relatively unknown at this time; though this appears to be by design rather than circumstance as a representative explains:
“We’ve actually been together for a while – long enough in fact that we’ve seen a lineup change – with founder and veteran skin-basher Art Pereira passing the sticks over to Dane Canterbury, the formidable rhythmic backbone of Megalodon. However, aside from two sneaky gigs supporting Only Forever and Red Helen last year, nobody would really have heard of us. We’ve been recording and honing the songs on our debut EP for about a year now, following Bobby – I call him ‘The Bandfather’ – Addison’s vision of having a devastating set of mastered songs in our arsenal for when we hit the scene. For this year we’ve still met almost weekly to go through the songs and get them razor sharp for the inevitable launch, which we now find is upon us!” ~ Ric Shields (guitar, Last One Alive)
Some of the names dropped by Ric truthfully suggest a high pedigree act about to hit the scene. Including, for example, Bobby Addison who has walked tall for many years with the reggae-infused nu-metal band Ill System which performed remarkably well in the international Emergenza competition whilst based in Wales, the UK in 2006, and this year supported the USA’s mighty Fear Factory live in Cape Town. On vocals, Joel Dickson who made his mark during a tenure with Animus Fall – which earned a SAMMA nomination for their debut EP Harbinger on which Joel’s vocals featured – has stepped in.
For the soon-to-be-revealed music video, we also know that multi-talented Ric has worked on some local productions in his spare time before as director/producer. So we took the opportunity of his attention to pry some information loose about what went into ‘Kiss The Ground’.
“The power of a good music video, as both an introduction to a new band’s characters and as a marketing tool, cannot be overstated. Having had some really good responses to the two videos I directed for Woodstock Mafia, we decided I should take the next step which was to essentially be on both sides of the lens! Joel wrote up a rough treatment that went hand in hand with his lyrics, and I fleshed this out into a full screenplay. I then went about getting hold of some of the best people I know who were capable of pulling something off that was technically challenging within budget and time constraints, and who I knew would bring the warmth and enthusiasm that I always try to infuse the production with.” ~ Ric Shields
Ric explains the direction of the song as being based on abusive relationships, with lyrics taking on a condemning standpoint on those who hurt the ones they love.
“It’s all in there: violence, intrigue, revenge. And it looks darn sexy if I do say so myself. There are a lot of videos that are thematically diluted and we wanted a really engaging narrative, while at the same time giving enough screen time to the band so that people can get to know our faces – particularly the ones we pull when we’re playing our instruments!” ~ Ric Shields
As to the arrival of a larger body of work to follow, Ric tells us that ‘Kiss The Ground’ will be the first single to be released for availability early in the new year. It will be followed by the band’s debut EP by approximately mid-year in 2017. Whilst much remains shrouded in mystery, such as an EP title, Ric has ceded that mixing was done by the band’s own Bobby Addison but then shipped over to be mastered by “a prominent engineer in the Metal Scene”. He also described a little of what can be expected not only when the full package finally arrives, but from the immediate onset as the band hones their assault on the live circuit beginning this weekend.
“The songs vary from high-intensity metal to stripped-down melodic alt-rock. I think I speak for all of us when I say our sound has been carefully crafted to appeal to a wide range of listeners. It’s more inviting to those who don’t enjoy straight Death Metal, but also more alluring to those who need to lose themselves in a moshpit. There’s a simplicity to the songwriting, which gives us each space to shine. For now, I invite people to come on a short and dark cinematic journey with us at our launch, as it will essentially be the centerpiece.” ~ Ric Shields
The video will screen to a public audience for the first time at 23h00 on Saturday 26 November, preceded by live entertainment by Stoker and Verona Walls, and followed by Last One Alive. Check out the official facebook event page for full details, and enjoy the snippets below.