Devour are a three piece metal band from Cumbernauld. Singer Marc, bassit John and drummer Jack agreed to meet me for an interview prior to their gig at Barrowlands 2. They recently released an demo album which is available from them for £5.
How did you get together?
Marc: Well, Jack and I have known each other since we were about ten and originally, I actually played bass and Jack was a guitarist. It kind of just happened, I wanted to play guitar because I wanted to play guitar solos and Jack just… bought a drum kit. We had four members to begin with, one of my friends, Paul was in the band but he left because he didn’t want to play original stuff, he wanted us to be a cover band.
How long has that been now?
Marc: 7 years? 6/7 years?It might actually be longer, it’s been since I was about fourteen. (Marc is 22)
John: 2006. That’s when I joined, I was in college.
Marc: Aye so six years!
Who does most of the songwriting?
John and Jack (in unison!): Marc
Marc: Me, I’ll write the guitar and the lyrics and then I’ll go into the studio, show Jack and John the song and they’ll add bass and drums to it. Actually though, it’s kind of changed recently; I’ll write a piece of a song, like a riff and while we’re jamming a song has come out of it.
John: [Devil’s] Curse happened like that, Enforcer was kind of like that as well
Marc: Aye. I only had the wee mellow bit in Enforcer was something I came up with and when I went to the studio I told the guys I want to use it and we kind of fell into Enforcer, the song.
How has Mayhem Underground changed the course of the band’s career?
Jack: Quite a lot.
Marc: We’re more well known. Before Mayhem, the only people that were at the gigs were my mum and girlfriend. It’s definitely helped us in a big way. If it wasn’t for Mayhem… We maybe wouldn’t even be a band any more. It was kind of hard before.
John: It’s Mayhem gigs we look forward to now.
Marc: Actually, we were talking about that on the way in. [To meet me for an interview]. No other gigs are like a Mayhem night. It’s not the same. Mayhem gigs you know you’re gonna meet friends, you’re gonna have a great time and you know there’s gonna be a half decent crowd there. Go to any other gig and it’s just completely different.
What problems or controversy have you faced as a band?
Marc: I don’t think we’ve ever-
[The whole band at once look at each other]
All three in unison: MONOPOLY!
Marc: Once, me and John fell out over Monopoly, was it Free Parking? We were arguing over the rules of the Free Parking square in Monopoly
… It means you get all the money in the middle!
Marc: Aye that’s what I was saying!
John: Was I not saying that?!
Jack [bemused]: Right let’s not start this again
Marc: It wasn’t Free Parking! It was the mortgages was it not?! I was saying you can’t buy again. Basically me and John got… very heated
Jack: John pure stormed out my house
Marc: I nearly choked John to death
[at this point I am howling laughing]
Marc: John stormed out the house shouting ‘FUCK THE BAND!’ we were rehearsing the next morning and Jack was the peacemaker wasn’t he?
[still howling laughing]
Jack: I was like ‘right bitches.’
Marc: That’s the only kind of problem we’ve had, isn’t it?
What’s your favourite song to play?
Jack: I like Martyr
Marc: I really like Enforcer. I couldn’t really pick one to be honest with you but if I had to then it’d probably be Enforcer.
John: I quite like playing Truth!
What was your best gig so far?
All: Sign Me To. Definitely.
Marc: It was amazing, seeing Pivo Pivo packed. Not one empty space… It was just amazing.
And the worst?
Marc: The worst?
Marc: Ivory Blacks or Soundhaus. Remember the Ivory Blacks gig? When it was a Blues night
John: Aw on a Saturday night yeah!
Marc: Aye you were there! [Talking about me] you and Rob came!
Jack: It was a blues night, before our gig there was like a 3 hour gig with a band playing with some blues legend.
John: The band were actually from Cumbernauld!
Marc: As soon as we came on, everybody left. All that was left was my mum, my girlfriend and –
Marc: yeah! At the Soundhaus, had your gran not just died that day? [to Jack]
Jack: Aye, my gran died
Marc: My guitar string snapped…
Jack: My bass pedal fell as well
Marc: I had to rush to get to the other guitar, it was just… it was not.a.good.gig
Who were you on with that night?
Marc: Lost Persona!
Jack: And Farseer.
Marc: Farseer, yep
How did you feel when the audience sang along to the musical parts of Enforcer (I Am)?
Marc: Epic! It was a great moment. It feels great to have people singing along to your songs, enjoying something that you’ve agreed
Marc: It felt like we were at an Iron Maiden gig
Jack: Devour Maiden!
Marc: It happened with Blackstone Down as well, that was our first one. There were French people there who were loving us, promised us gigs in France outside. It sounds like the start of a joke, A Scottish man, an Irish man and a French man stand outside a bar…
Who’s your favourite Mayhem Underground band? And don’t say ‘us’ before you make that rubbish joke!
John: We wouldn’t but there’s so many!
Marc: We like quite a lot of them like, my 3 main bands are Lets Play God obviously, Scarcinogen and Insomniac. They’re the three best bands on there.
Do you all agree?
Jack and John: yeah!
Marc: There was another band. What was it, Perduramo? I thought they were brilliant!
John: Momentus as well!
Marc: Oh aye, Momentus. Butler is… what a singer. Good voice on the guy. There’s a lot on the roster that I quite like but I think those [aforementioned] three are the best ones.
Who are your influences?
Marc: Shinedown, Black Stone Cherry, Metallica
John: Black Sabbath apparently! [all laugh]
Marc: Apparently Black Stone Down sounds like a Black Sabbath song. It was actually Rob [Lets Play God] that said that!
This was a question from the man himself… We all know that (Michael) Butler (sound engineer @ Pivo Pivo) is the greatest sound engineer ever, but what do you like best about him?
Jack: His sense of humour. And his hair.
Marc: his cuddles!
Jack: Aw yeah that was an epic cuddle!
Marc: I don’t know if you were here, Butler was talking about how he’s the best cuddler in the world and I was like ‘No, I’M the best cuddler in the world!’ so he jumped off the stage, it was the most gentle hug to ever happen. Ever. He started off really aggresive and then was suddenly so gentle!
What are your plans for this year?
Marc: This year? We’ve basically done what we wanted to do this year. We have t-shirts out, the CD out. We really need to get out of Glasgow [other members agree]. I think it’d be better if one of us could drive, we could start gigging everywhere but yeah, we really want to play outside of Glasgow, it’s just difficult at the moment.
Devour are playing Stairway, Glasgow on May 1st. (14+)