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The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
Brett Bamberger Revocation - Interview
The Rockpit interviews

BRETT BAMBERGER

REVOCATION


Revocation

US metal warriors Revocation return to Australia in 2017 after a blazing supporting tour with Thy Art Is Murder in Australia 2 years ago, this time supporting Aussie legends King Parrot and Psycroptic on the Thrash, Blast And Grind Festival tour. Their latest album Great Is Our Sin was released earlier in the year and is considered to be one of their strongest efforts yet, Steve spoke to bass player Brett Bamberger about the upcoming tour, the new album and the evolution of Revocation.

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After a previous interview setup with Brett Bamberger earlier which involved "technical issues" that prevented a full print of that conversation (we won't go into details on what happened, shall we?) we had another go at it with full credit given to Brett for giving me another chance at talking to the bass man from a great metal band known as Revocation. After a few laughs about our previous chat, we proceeded to continue where we left off and gave us a chance to talk a bit further on the evolution of Revocation as Brett explained to me.

Brett: I first met those guys in 2010 when I was filling in the the Binary Code on the Metal As Art tour that they were also doing. Back then they were weirder and more brutal, like "Empire Of The Obscene" is a more brutal record and "Existence Is Futile" same thing and I think the band got a little bit weirder in terms of song write and the way that the band sounded like in Chaos Of Forms", that's not my favorite record of the band to be honest. After that I came into the ranks and when I met those guys in 2010, Dave (Davidson, guitars/vocals) had another 3 records already written so by the time I joined the band we were just tapping in to the last of the material that he had then. So he was kinda writing fresh and as the lineup changed the band became a little bit more solid and I think Dave and Dan's (Gargiulo, guitars) writing pretty much became really focused and cohesive by the time that "Deathless" was put together. Less all over the place and I think just a more cohesive effort, the band finally has the sound and it definitely displayed on "Great Is Our Sin" I like to think with Ash (Pearson, drums) in the fold because I think it's the most comfortable I felt pretty much in the entire band in pretty much the past year we've been hanging out and playing together.

Steve: How do you think it's evolved from say "Deathless" to today, do you think there has been much change in your sound or do you think you are heading in another direction?

Brett: I think we're all working together and everybody is playing their as off a little bit harder now too. "Deathless" is a cool record and the first record that we were like, 'Alright cool this is like the sound of the band, we finally nailed it.' Because we did the EP "Teratogenesis" with Zeuss, we loved his sound and he brought that sound back in "Deathless" which we thought was the most cohesive effort to date and then the transition from "Deathless" to "Great Is Our Sin" was we all worked harder on it I liked to think. I spent pretty much a solid 2 months working on parts everyday for hours pracrticing my chops, getting ready for the pre-production sessions in the rehearsal room so if they ever throw some curveballs like, 'Oh you should follow the guitars here', and this and that, we were ready to do it which I think the record has a little more progressive bass playing than a lot of the other records. And I think Dave's solos keep ripping harder and harder! The band becomes more it's own living organism with each release it seems with the past few releases I would like to say.

Steve: What is your favorite track to play live? Do you have one that stands out in your mind at all?

Brett: I love playing "Arbiters of the Apocalypse", that song is really fun to play, it's really awesome. "Communion" is the fastest one we've ever written so that one is a ripper, it's great to have Ash just killing it. We've been playing "Crumbling Imperium" live and I really like that one, it's got a pretty tech bass line and all the verses. The whole damn record is really fun to play live and when we were jamming it in pre-production I was like, 'Man these songs rip, this is awesome!' [laughs]. But out of the ones we've been playing live probably "Crumbling Imperium" is my favorite one doing live so far, it's got a slamming ending and I can't wait to play a couple more new ones.

Steve: And that leads me into my next question, can the Australian fans expect much of the newer material when you guys head down next year?

Brett: Yeah we'll be playing a lot of new stuff. Pretty much we'll be playing a lot of stuff off the new record and then filling it with some stuff off of "Deathless" and maybe 1 or 2 deeper cuts or older songs or something like that. That's what we've been doing for the past couple of tours, we're enjoying it. I mean we're hyped up on playing the new stuff, we tour a lot so we've played a lot of the older material while we've been trying to breakthrough and come to the surface so we're pretty hyped on playing the new stuff.

Steve: So how difficult is it to come up with a setlist on a nightly basis? Do you rotate the songs or do you stick with one setlist in particular?

Brett: We change it pretty much every tour we do. There's a couple that we keep in like anything we do a video for we try to keep that in there for the beginning of the cycle but we sit together in a room and we have a group text message going on because everyone lives in different parts of the country or even Ash lives in a different country. Everyone in the group says, 'What do you guys want to play? I kinda feel like doing this one and this one is like a tech death tour so we should probably play a bit more tech death stuff'. We just talk about it and then everybody agrees and then comes in, everyone has their own little argument for how we should do stuff. Nothing heated, it's all discussions among adults and we just come in and it happens so it's fairly easy to select but definitely when we do a tour we play the same set for the entire tour.


READ OUR REVIEW OF REVOCATION - GREAT IS OUR SIN



Steve: Yeah for sure. You have a pretty extensive back catalogue so there's plenty to choose from.

Brett: Oh yeah sometimes it's tough. When we re-released "Empire Of The Obscene" we did 4 shows where we played 7 songs off that record and that was really cool to dig some of those out because I wasn't on that record so I had to relearn a lot of that stuff and as a fan of the band before I was in it - that was my favorite thing that the band had done by the time I had joined the ranks - and for me a cool experience to be able to play those songs.

Steve: How do you come up with song ideas during the writing process for an album? Say you are out somewhere and you come up with an idea, do you write it down in a journal or have a little quirk that helps you remember your ideas so you can go home and put it down?

Brett: Everybody has got a different method. I know Dave has files and files on his computer of riffs because he is a riff machine and he's got them sorted in bpm's and he goes from there. He's always writing, always working on stuff. Myself I roll around when I'm on tour with my own little protools rig so if I have an idea I record it and I'm always playing in different bands so I'm always working on something. Dan has a really crazy brain where he just remembers everything that he does, just stores it all in his head so he's like that. Ash I'm pretty sure is the same way.

Steve: I recently read Kirk Hammett lost an entire phone's worth of ideas!

Brett: Oh man! Yeah you can sing it in your phone, you know what I mean? I don't mind doing it but If I'm out and I don't have my instrument on me I feel like a clown singing it to my phone [laughs]. I don't want people looking at me like, 'What's that weirdo doing over there?'

Steve: [laughs] Paints all sorts of interesting mental pictures.

Brett: Yeah no doubt! Like if you are at a bar and say, 'Excuse me, let me step out real quick', and you're out at the parking lot like, 'lalal lala'. People are like, 'What the fuck is wrong with this guy?' [laughs].

Steve: [laughs] Excellent man! So how has the fan reaction been given that the new album has been out for a little while now? Pretty positive so far?

Brett: Yeah man it's been nothing but positivity. The reviews came in hot, it was our biggest first week debut to date as a band. We just finished our tour in Europe with Obscura, Beyond Creation and Rivers Of Nile and it was one of the coolest tours we've ever done, people were so hyped up. Bought a bunch of t- shirts, there was a bunch of kids that came out rocking in the t-shirts, they knew who the band was. You could definitely tell that the growth has taken place and the returns are starting to come in so the fan reaction has been really positive and we're really grateful that we're able to do it because we wouldn't be able to do anything that we're doing without that reaction.

Steve: That's it and I think some bands forget that these days that if it's not for the fans they obviously wouldn't be where they are.

Brett: That's it, I mean I wouldn't be able to reach into my fridge right now and grab something to eat [laughs].

Steve: Like a can of tuna!

Brett: Yeah there's a couple of those in the cupboard [laughs].

Steve: [laughs] So if you could be remembered for one song that you've written, what would that be and why?

Brett: At this current moment I would say "Cleaving Giants of Ice", the last song on the record. It's one of Dan's songs and it's one of the coolest things I've heard and I'm a big fan of Dan's music and when we were doing the pre-production for these demos for this record, when he sent that over, just the chorus part melted my heart. It sounded so cool and it was such a different thing for the band, it gave me a really emotional reaction so I would pick that one because it has a special place in my heart because it hit me so hard when I heard it.

Steve: Awesome and it's always great when something grabs you and takes you somewhere else as well, at least that's how I see music.

Brett: Totally man and acid does a great job of that too, mushrooms and stuff that takes you all over the place [laughs].

Steve: That is true [laughs]. And beer is another story entirely!

Brett: Beer takes me to places where I don't want to go to! Actually Whiskey takes me to places I don't want to go to, beer just makes me sleep [laughs].




Steve: [laughs] I like the way you operate, this is great! So if you could put together your ultimate all star band, who would be in your lineup?

Brett: I was just asked this question and the answer I gave before I'm not going to give again because I pretty much said out of all the supergroups I wanted to happen, already happened from like Isis and Converge and Cave In and all those guys collaborating. Right now for this interview I would put together David Lee Roth just because he is ridiculous, then I would put Paul Stanley in there on guitar as well just so the two of those guys can do a really crazy banter. I would put Even Brewer on bass because he would probably want to kill himself dealing with those two guys, then I would put T.J. from Inter Arma on drums because he's another psycho and for some reason I think that combo of dudes would just work somehow.

Steve: Absolutely, that sounds like an awesome lineup and just on a side note, Inter Arma are absolutely flawless!

Brett: Oh yeah man those guys are so sick. They're really good friends of mine and they actually live in town, or I actually moved into the town they lived in and I get to party with those guys all the time. They're such amazing dudes and such amazing musicians. You know T.J. (Childers) plays guitar pretty much as sick as Dave from Revocation, he's insane on guitar and insane on drums and an amazing song writer. That guy is a complete psycho and he party's harder than I ever could so he's the ultimate born musician machine ever so I got mad respect for that dude.

Steve: Yeah and their new album is definitely in my top 10 for this year.

Brett: Oh dude it's so sick man, they're awesome!

Steve: Cool man! So I guess finally what do you look forward the most to in doing or seeing when you head down to Australia next year?

Brett: I had a damn good time in Melbourne. Or MelbOURNE, I know you guys love it when we say that. BrisBANE, MelBOURNE.

Steve: [laughs] That's the one!

Brett: You know what man? The people in Australia are so awesome and are so friendly and hospitable and cool and everyone is down to bullshit and having a good time. I can't wait to see the homies from Disentomb, I just can't wait to see my friends out there because it's such a positive vibe and we're bringing my best friend Todd. He's filling in on bass for Psycroptic so I'm really excited to be able to tour the world with him because he's like a major drinking buddy, he manages Revocation when we're out on the road and he plays bass in Psycroptic and Hammer Fight and a bunch of other bands so I can't wait to hit it with him, it's going to be awesome.

Steve: Well it's been great speaking with you this morning and thanks so much for your time and definitely look forward to catching you next year, I think we should catch up for a pint or 2.

Brett: Yeah we're definitely going to do that, we'll drink a couple of them!


THE THRASH, BLAST AND GRIND FESTIVAL AUSTRALIAN TOUR 2016:
King Parrot, Psycroptic, Revocation, Whoretopsy & Black Rheno

Friday, February 10: The Triffid, Brisbane
Saturday, February 11: Manning Bar, Sydney
Tuesday, February 14: The Cambridge, Newcastle
Wednesday, February 15: The Basement, Canberra
Friday, February 17: Max Watts, Melbourne
Saturday, February 18: Amplifier, Perth
Sunday, February 19: Fowlers, Adelaide

Tickets and tour details can be found at Direct Touring.


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Interview by Steve Monaghan on December 1st 2016