From Insanity’s Ruin with Past the Fall
UK-based metal ingenues PPast the Fall are a formidable display of modern metal braggadocio, refined classicism and subtly progressive flair, a distinctive and unprecedented blend of nails-hard musical elements and a newfound sense of subtlety and exploration setting the band apart from just about everything else.
HMA: Can you describe the content of your new record?
The shortest genre way to describe what we do is Epic groove metal with grungy sleaze. Our album is ambitious and deeply vulnerable; each track is created with the idea of being something unto itself. Then, we’ve tied those wide dynamics to track together with a natural flow, plus intro and outro motifs. So, even though each track can stand alone and be very different, the album is a journey. For us, it’s about never writing for a scene or the status quo. Listening carefully to the music in our imagination is always the germ of an idea. Once its bare bones are brought into the world, the music itself asks for what is right, so it is a priority to turn off the ego and listen for what’s being asked.
HMA: Is there a common lyrical concept?
It’s about various things. We write about our own actual experiences and emotions. First, there’s a form of actualisation and catharsis there, and second, fans connect more when it’s something genuine to the performer. They don’t hear them playing a role but delivering something with authenticity. The record covers the loss of a father, stalkers, Isolation and loneliness, exploitation, and the negatives of social media, amongst other things.
HMA: Could you describe your artwork?
I brainstormed the idea, made a sketch and then gave it to an artist to make it look good. The band’s Genesis was about rising above past failures and mental problems to create a new way, ‘Past the Fall’, so to speak, into a new and undiscovered landscape. The figure at this centre is very symbolic- putting together rediscovered parts of the heart uncovered from the ruins of collapsed systems/culture. The sickly patient’s dead versions of past selves that have died.
HMA: Given the current political climate. What are your thoughts on free speech?
It’s essential; the intention is the most important thing to consider in offensive behaviour. It means that yes, there will be things that offend us, and its fallout means stupid people have the right to say stupid things, but control of speech can only ever be regulated by the cultural mores of the era and those who decide that are only human themselves- who polices the police? Even if it has good intentions, the underpinning of a free and democratic society is in its ability to have access to free speech and the right to protest without fear of persecution.
HMA: Would you say that metal, in general, is contrary by nature, and why is or isn’t?
A powerful vein within it comes from the punk ethic and the sheer merit of how uncool and persecuted/feared it was for many generations. Today, it’s phased much more into the mainstream, and the bands are a lot ‘safer’, but its general philosophy still feels part of the alternative. I don’t think people look twice to see people into metal these days, but when I was a kid, we’d have to fight in broad daylight for looking different! And that’s a good change, so maybe we’ve finally infected the mainstream and improved their music taste.