Countless Skies – New Music & Interview

UK based rock band Countless Skies is named after Be’lakor’s song “Countless Skies” and they been getting more and more recognition since their debut self-titled EP release in late 2014. Blending progressive and darkly intense music influenced by their Scandinavian melodeath heroes, the album New Dawn will be released June 24th, 2016 via Kolony Records. Band members are: Ross King (Vocals, Guitars), James Pratt (Guitars), Phil Romeo (Bass, Vocals) and Nathan Robshaw (Drums).

Ross King photo

Interview With Ross King

How did the initial band members meet? What brought everyone else together?
“James and I have been playing guitar together for over 10 years now, and we’ve been friends with Phil for nearly as long. We found Nathan through the wonders of MySpace. We all share a common interest in the weird and nerdy, terrible puns, and a passion for great metal.”

What things have helped the band evolve since the self titled EP release in 2014?
“Entering and winning the Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses competition in Luton, definitely. Being able to play at such an important festival to us as Bloodstock (on my 10th year going) was unreal. Signing a deal with Kolony records was also extremely exciting for us, and I’m really looking forward to seeing what comes our way next.”

Would you like to talk about a meaning behind the single ‘Daybreak’?
“No matter how bleak things seem, you never know what’s around the next corner. So keep your head up and keep moving.”

Where were the tracks/parts from the album New Dawn recorded? Who helped?
“We tracked all instruments and vocals with Danny at HVR Studios in Ipswich. He really pushed us as musicians and was a great laugh to work with. Once we had everything down, we placed it in the hands of Juho Räihää (Before The Dawn) of SoundSpiral Audio to work his studio wizardy and make it sound huge. We’re really happy with how it came out.”

What festivals and concerts have been a huge experience for the band besides Bloodstock Open Air in the Summer of 2015? Any major appearances in 2016?
“After Bloodstock we were asked to play Castle Fest on behalf of Luton Live/s (hosts of M2TM Bedfordshire). We also have Warhorns coming up later this year in Yorkshire, and the line-up looks incredible.”

Other than performances, what has helped the band get recognition and gain a larger following?
“I, personally, can’t rate Bandcamp highly enough. Most of the money we’ve made as a band has come through Bandcamp. I’m a big fan of the ‘pay what you like’ payment method they have available, and it’s stunned me how generous some of our fans have been with this. Also, the tagging features meant a lot of people have stumbled upon us by chance, which is always great J That, and a good PR company never hurts.”

Are there certain brands of instruments that members prefer?
“We are currently using Schecter and Jackson guitars. Nathan uses Meinl Cymbals and ProMark sticks.”

What bands have you opened or closed for that really got your attention? Any other bands in general?
“Witnessing Rannoch live was an experience to remember, especially as I nearly went deaf in my left ear! (Worth it, btw). We also played a gig in Brighton recently where we caught a young bunch of guys called Dreamwaves playing progressive instrumental music (a la Scale The Summit, Plini, Chon) who really impressed us. Finally, it was great to meet Raze The Void out on the road, a bunch of like-minded guys playing a similar style to us. Check them out, their sound is huge and epic.”

What special thanks would you like to give? Is there any additional information or extra things anyone would like to say?
“We’d like to say a huge thanks to: Paul, Jessie and everyone at Luton Live/s for all their hard work, Simon Hall and the Bloodstock team for running M2TM competitions that are keeping the UK metal scene thriving, Keith Keef from B.A.M for believing in us from the start, Danny, Juho and Lorenzo for making the album a reality, Carl Ellis for his consistently amazing artwork, and our friends and family for their support.”

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