Interview with vocalist Enrique Chavez
Interview conducted by Luxi Lahtinen
Date online: January 12, 2024
LA death metal maniacs Lurking Terror know exactly what they want their band to be all about, and that's as old-school death metal as it can get. The band mixes late '80s and early '90s death metal the way it was done back in the day, and they are doing it with 100% dedication with no bullshit or gimmicks.
These vicious and evil death metal warriors released their debut 2-track demo in October 2023, featuring the songs "In Darkness" and 'End of Days" that reached some curious ears on the infamous staff of The Metal Crypt, tempting us to get more information about the band.
Vocalist Enrique Chavez (ex-Sadistic Intent) provided us a good insight into the world of Lurking Terror via this interview, so learn more about them and get prepared for this lurking terror that's right around the corner...
How are things in Los Angeles these days, my old friend?
Enrique: Doing great here. As far as music is concerned, it is very healthy with lots of bands and many promoters. Lots of fans for every genre style.
RISING FROM THE FRAGMENTS OF...
First off, what can you tell us about your new band, Lurking Terror?
Enrique: We are a late '80s/early '90s-style death metal band. The band consists of three ex-Sadistic Intent members who decided to play the style we all liked and last played together, along with two other veteran musicians. In the music you can hear the old Stockholm Swedish sound along with blast beats and our American sound.
How did the idea of forming this band come about?
Enrique: We had the idea of just playing some of our old songs that we were proud of. One riff here and another riff there. A drum kick there, a cymbal here, a vocal there. Some arrangements and the next thing we knew, we had a demo and an offer to tour Japan. It happened so quickly that we are now here talking about it. We're proud of what we've accomplished in such a short time.
It's relatively easy to see where the band name was taken from. There's a song called "Lurking Terror" on Sadistic Intent's 1990 EP Impending Doom..., so did you want to pay homage to your ex-band by adopting Lurking Terror as the name of your band?
Enrique: The idea came from some of us thinking of playing some Sadistic Intent covers for our drummer's birthday party. And yes, that's how the name Lurking Terror was adopted. We all agreed, but then COVID came along and destroyed that idea. We kept rehearsing and introducing guitar riffs and the rest just fell into place. We're dropping the Sadistic songs while the band continues writing original music.
Was it easy to find like-minded guys to play in the band? I guess each of you happen to know a thing or two about old-school (death) metal, right?
Enrique: When Joel Marquez (drums) asked me if I was interested, he already had Noel Bello (guitar, ex-Infernal Conjuration) on board. I agreed since it was nothing serious and I asked Vince Cervera (ex-Sadistic Intent) if he'd be interested. Since Vince had retired from extreme music about 25-30 years ago, we were surprised when he said yes. We went through several bass players, and we found Lorenzo Kemp (Temblad).
How was it to reconnect with Vincent Cervera, who has his own history with Sadistic Intent, just like you do? Have you kept in touch since you left this legendary death metal band?
Enrique: We lost touch for many years. He married and raised his son. He was over at my house for my wife's birthday party, and it was a long shot asking him. It was surprising when he agreed.
All of you have experience playing in many bands (Sadistic Intent, Infinitum Obscure, Ninth Level, etc.) Is that an advantage for the band, having all this experience in Lurking Terror?
Enrique: I believe so. Our style is a mixture and is similar to what we were listening to and playing in our previous bands, helping the chemistry when we rehearse and write the music.
END OF DAYS IS WAITING IN DARKNESS
You released your debut demo on October 11th last year, featuring the songs "In Darkness" and "End of Days." What can you tell us about those songs?
Enrique: We wanted to return to the era we grew up hearing and playing when we first started out. The songs were written some time ago but structured with all of us having input. It's a sound that brings memories of the late '80s and early '90s. A mixture of early Swedish death metal with American death metal and grindcore thrown into the mix.
Are you all writing songs for the band, or is the songwriting responsibility put on the shoulders of just a few?
Enrique: Some of the songs, like I mentioned before, were written earlier but the structure and lyrical content were worked on together. We have good chemistry, and we know the sound we want. So, together we are working on them.
I assume you have been trying to promote the demo to some labels. How has the response been so far?
Enrique: To be honest, we have not shopped the demo around. We've sent it to friends only. Through that we have received word-of-mouth offers. We have agreed to sign with a label. We will wait to announce the deal soon.
Have you ever thought of putting Gothic Records back together and releasing Lurking Terror's stuff that way (plus, other releases from other bands as well)?
Enrique: Gothic Records was laid to rest some time ago. From the ashes of Gothic Records, I worked on World War 3 Music years ago. We released good music, but at this time with U.S. distribution at a minimum, without physical stores carrying our music, and digital downloads available, I wouldn't have the time to run a small label out of my bedroom. We will leave that to a label that has all the channels to push us forward. I believe we found the right label.
Is your next step to release a full-length studio album or would you be fine with an EP or another demo recording?
Enrique: It depends on what the label would like to do. I personally would love a 4-5 song EP at first to bring us forward, while we record a full length, but we will leave that up to the label we sign to.
Are you also aiming to play at some festivals in 2024, like Hellfest, Alcatraz, etc., or did that train pass the station for you guys already?
Enrique: All that would be nice, but we will wait to release a physical recording, then go from there.
MUSIC MEANT NOT TO FOLLOW ANY TRENDS
Musically, you are all about old-school, dark, and heavy death metal in its purest form. Did you all feel like that's the only form of music you all wanted to do, ignoring trendy, wannabe forms of modern metal?
Enrique: Personally, I don't care for all the technical and "slam" direction death metal has taken. We wrote the music and lyrics in their purest form. We did not sit down and decide what the music should be like, we walked into rehearsals and what you hear is what we came up with. We are not following any trends. We are just writing what feels good for us and it's working.
Can you tell us why you still find old-school death metal so appealing after all these years? Does it have something to do with nostalgia perhaps?
Enrique: I believe it's what we grew up hearing and writing in our early days. It sounds more pure, simple, and heavy. It has its fast, grinding beats then its early D-beats from the hardcore and punk influences.
THE YEARS IN SADISTIC INTENT
You are, of course, known for your career in Sadistic Intent as vocalist from 1988 to 1991. What fond memories do you have from those days and are you still friends with the Cortez brothers, Rick and Bay?
Enrique: Those were great times, of course. We formed a great band together. We recorded some great music together. I've always been a fan of the Cortez brothers' writing skills. At the time when we left Sadistic Intent, we had our own reasons. We left at different times and for our own reasons. But we're proud of what we did and accomplished together. We keep in touch. Not as often as before when we were playing together but when we see each other it's always nice.
What do you think of the Sadistic camp's current comings and goings? Have you been bugging them about getting their next album released as much as possible but in a friendly way, of course, heh!
Enrique: Ha! They are doing what they need to do to keep the band going. I don't ask them about the upcoming album. I know they will release it when they have it done. And I'm sure it's going to be a very special long-awaited masterpiece.
AND LASTLY, OF FUTURE PLANS
OK, back to Lurking Terror for the last couple of questions. What would be short- and long-term plans for the band that you'd like to reach within 1-5 years or so?
Enrique: We are going to take it one step at a time. The band members have full-time jobs. We will wait while it all comes together. Shows and festivals will be fun. But let's get this recording out first.
What might be your ultimate plan with this band be?
Enrique: Speaking for the band, we all had a dream to play in Japan and we have accomplished that already on a 2-song demo. We would like to play in Europe and do some great shows and festivals but first we need our record to be released.
That was all I had in mind for this interview, and my sincere congrats if you made it through without me causing you any headaches with my questions. I wanna thank you, Enrique, for your time and, of course, wish you all the best with some future endeavors with the band. Now you are entitled for your closing comments to wrap up this conversation properly...
Enrique: Thank you, Luxi, for the in-depth interview. We look forward to releasing our first recording and hopefully meeting up with you in Europe soon.
|Other information about Lurking Terror on this site
|Review: Demo 2023
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