In 2019 I stumbled across Letterbomb AD when they released their self-titled EP. Fast forward two years and a few line-up changes and these boys are going from strength to strength. Hardcore fans will froth over their latest single ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ it is a chaotic experience. I caught up with Dom to chat all things Letterbomb AD.
First off I need to ask what is the connection between ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ and ‘Cigarette and a Blindfold’. Cigarette/Smoke Blindfold/Mirror. Surely there is a good story behind that. Or am I reading too much into it!!
Dom: Honestly it was just a coincidence.
Damn! I thought for sure there would be some cool story.
Dom: I wish we had of had a theme that we were going for but nope. That is a total coincidence.
So how did Cigarette and a Blindfold get its name?
Dom: When we wrote those tracks we had a different singer who we parted ways with during the recording process. We had to name the songs really quick then so we looked at the lyrics to see which would make the best song title. We thought that lyric was a pretty cool song title.
Ha here’s me running this big theory about it!!! You guys have had a fair few line-up changes.
Dom: Yeah we have. As long as we have the main solid two which is me and Gaz it’s always pretty good. We still have the same sound as long as the initial two are in there.
‘Smoke and Mirrors’ is your latest single. Is it just you and Gaz that do the writing?
Yeah. Gaz plays the drums usually but because we didn’t have a vocalist at the time he has been recording the vocals in the studio. So the recent few singles it’s actually Gaz on vocals. He has done really well on the vocals so we are kind of trying to work out what we are going to do once we can play live shows again. We are going to trial some stuff like seeing how he goes just doing vocals and get a fill in drummer. If that works then we will keep going, if not we’ll just keep looking for a vocalist. It’s no biggie, we are happy regardless. We just want what is best for the band.
He might want to stick to vocals because they are damn good!!
Dom: Yeah I know right! He did a really good job. That’s why we thought we’d give it a go. If people like him live and enjoy it then sweet. If not then fucking back on the kit for you!!! He’s not gonna be cut if that happens. I think that this is better than what is on the EP in my opinion.
Absolutely it is.
Dom: There is a lot more range and a bit more of that modern style on the extreme metal vocals.
Like Thy Art and bands like Inhibitor and Nicholas Cage Fighter.
Dom: Exactly. There’s a lot more gutturals and that Alpha Wolf yelling style. Gaz can do all those styles really well. He’s also happy to give stuff a go. We just want to write stuff that is super heavy but also catchy and then also try and keep it fairly unique as well. Our plan is to make it way catchier.
‘Smoke and Mirrors’ is just that. It’s chaotically heavy but catchy at the same time.
Dom: I’m glad you liked it. I think we saw your blog about Distopia last year, that was awesome.
That was so good too.
Dom: Thanks. There is obviously a niche for the real chaotic, hardcore stuff but its hard to find where. There’s only a few of us that really like it.
Even though the few of you that are around are the same, you are all so unique in your sound.
Dom: It’s such a unique style that even if you under that category of chaotic hardcore you are still going to sound quite different to another band in this genre. Yeah you are right.
I love that.
Dom: It’s good, it shows that the genre has a lot of diversity in terms of sound.
Absolutely, all that horrid screaming noise as my mum and dad so nicely put it!! My kids used to ask when I was going to stop listening to it haha. They introduced me to bands like Parkway and Alexisonfire.
Dom: Your kids did?
Yeah I was a late bloomer to the scene!! I was 46…
Dom: That’s awesome. Most people write off the genre completely if they didn’t grow up with it. Usually people that are in their 50’s, the screamo stuff wasn’t quite as prevalent that long ago. That’s a great attitude, I hope I am the same even when I am in my 50’s, that I will still be looking for new stuff to check out. I’m happy to hear where music goes. I’ll never write off stuff because it has been written by people younger than me. There is a lot of great Australian metalcore popping up, it’s so cool to see.
It’s insane. An overseas band told me the other day that they think we are the metalcore capital.
Dom: We have kind of taken the torch. I’ve noticed that a lot of Australian metalcore bands have really blown up overseas. Polaris for instance are freaking massive. Then you have Make them Suffer, In Hearts Wake, god there are so many. Justice For The Damned are doing so well too.
There are so many more that are on the brink too.
Speaking of being on the brink you guys got your video premiered on Knotfest!
Dom: That was pretty freaking cool. We were stoked about that because Knotfest is a pretty big deal.
It sure is. What’s next for you guys then?
Dom: We’ve just started writing again in the past few weeks. We have pretty much got a rough draft of one new song now, instrumental wise. Lyrics come last for us. We are trying to get a bit more rock’n’roll in our songs, more of a stadium feel if that makes sense. I just envision that whole Euro-metal style. Spaced out with big choruses, it will still be chaotic and shit though! We want to try and use that rock structure more. Verse, chorus, verse, bridge but obviously with breakdowns!
Being in such a unique genre who do you guy look to for inspiration?
Dom: Converge, Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza who are a major influence in what we do in terms of eight strings and dissonant riffs. They pretty much pioneered that sort of sound. The Acacia Strain and then I guess Botch is an older one we are influenced by. Dillinger Escape Plan, even Hatebreed and bands like that.
Who would be your most played on Spotify?
Dom: At the moment I have been listening to a lot of more punk stuff this year so NOFX and The Descendants are my top two most played artists at the moment. Even that is probably going to be a bit of an influence on the newer stuff. I know it will sound kind of weird but I’m going to work it in there! I just love the drum beat style that The Descendants use.
Well after that chat I am certainly keen to hear what Letterbomb AD give us next!
Letterbomb AD are - Dominic Sutton on Guitars, Keegan McCleary on Bass and Garrett McMaster on Drums & Vocals