Lord Dying | Interview with Erik Olson

Freshly signed to Relapse Records, Portland’s Lord Dying have recently released their impressive debut full-length 'Summon the Faithless’, which boasts some of the purest and heaviest metal riffs you’ll hear all year. Guitarist and vocalist Erik Olson told us everything about the deal with Relapse, their background, and the band's future plans including a possible European tour. 

First off, you just signed a deal with Relapse Records so congratulations. Tell us a little bit about how it all came about? I’ve heard they turned you down just a few months prior to the current deal.

"It all started with Matt Jacobsen (president of Relapse) coming to our shows in the beginning and asking us to play a show for his birthday party. He lives in Portland but the main Relapse office is in Philadelphia. He was interested but not everyone was on board in the Philly office, they still needed to see us live. We played in Philly the first time on the Witch Mountain tour but didn't get an offer until the second time we played there with Red Fang. Yeah it's true we were turned down 3 months previous to the offer so we were surprised when they offered us a deal."

I understand that you all knew each other before forming Lord Dying from playing in other bands, so what was the force & purpose that brought you guys together?

"Chris and I have been playing in metal bands together since we were 13 and it seemed like the natural thing to do. At the time he had been jamming with Jon and asked me to come over and we immediately wrote "In a Frightful State of Gnawed Dismemberment". A song we still play today. We needed a bass player and we had known Don for a long time and also that his band Black Elk had recently broken up so we asked him to join."

"...The inspiration came from a fascination of metal and hatred for organized religion."

Relapse have just released your debut LP, ‘Summon the Faithless’, what was the major inspiration that inspired and brought this record into being? Some of the songs already appeared on your previous EP, but all that other songs are brand new and were recorded last year with Sanford Parker right?

"Yeah we recorded the album in October 2012 with Sanford Parker at Jackpot Studios in Portland, Oregon. The inspiration came from a fascination of metal and hatred for organized religion. Ultimately it is an offering for the undesirable and a celebration of all things wicked."

There are the obvious comparisons to say, High On Fire, Black Tusk and Red Fang (with whom you’ve toured before) to be found on ‘Summon the Faithless’, but occasionally I also hear some thrash metal influences creeping into the songs. Is it something that just happens organically or does one of you guys brings this influence consciously to the table?

"It happens organically. Really we just focus and the riff, trying to shape it constantly into something we like. Sometimes they are slower, sometimes faster, but always heavy."

If I’m not mistaken right now you’re on the road playing some shows with Howl. How’s the tour going so far?

"We are doing some headlining dates across the US and we're meeting with Howl on Saturday in Providence. It's been going great so far, been an awesome response!"

You’ve been touring a lot lately, what were some of the good things and bad things you come across on tour?

"Man, we love touring. Some have been better than others. The best part is just getting to play every night, only bad part is it can be kind of exhausting sometimes but we still love it. Lots of touring coming up!"

Finally, what other plans do you guys have for the rest of this year and the years to come? You’re going to tour with Valient Thorr and Ramming Speed this fall right?

"Yeah, we will be out with Valient Thorr and Ramming Speed, we are playing Housecore Horrorfest in Texas late October and there will be another US tour in November. We will also be hitting Europe early 2014."

More info at: www.facebook.com/LordDying