Are you into Frenchcore? Or Metal? Wait a second, why would you want to choose!? Since “Ashes Of a Falling Empire” was released at Hardcore France Records last November, your wish is your command! This group from Bordeaux (France), who skillfully mastered and blended both genres, has agreed to be interviewed and has answered our questions (not without humor).
Today’s Special: the group’s debut, new album, musical influences, prospective projects… don’t waste another minute and discover these artists and their original style!
1 – Hello everyone! Thank you for your time. To begin with, could you briefly introduce yourselves and tell us who’s hiding behind the name of Inbleed?
Thomas: Basically, Arthur and I have known each other for more than 20 years and one thing that got us closer together is Metal. We went to our first concerts together and spent hours listening to Metal cassette tapes. A few years later, we both began mixing, pretty much at the same time, Arthur within the Hardtek area while I was more into Hardcore. In spite of it all, I’ve kept on listening to Metal and I felt the need to combine the two universes together, so I came up with the idea to set up a band. I’m lucky to have a brother who plays in metal band. Therefore, we asked him if he could join the project. I feel pretty fortunate to have my own band with my brother and my best friend; that’s lit!
Arty: As a matter of fact, when Thomas came up to me with the project, I didn’t have to think about it for a second, I just went for it: challenge accepted! Raph integrated the band later on when we took the decision to create our own original tracks.
Raph: Like Thomas said it above, I’m a guitarist in a rock/metal band. That’s what I do. To be completely honest, I was quite reluctant at first when the guys asked me to sing in this project, it wasn’t really my thing and I couldn’t figure out what I could bring to the project, to something so unconventional to my ears. If it weren’t for them, it never would have seen the light of day. At first, we tested a lot of different things. It really did hit me when we started to work on the album’s tracks. I felt like I was part of something – the creation of true songs, with defined structures – and it definitely was pleasing.
2 – Tell us a little bit about your career. Have you first started as a metal band to then decide to give a go to electronic music or have you directly begun with Hard Music production?
Arty: Even though I listened to Metal prior to listening to electronic music, I started with the latter and more precisely with Hardtek under the stage name of Tao H. I’ve been touring solo for almost 15 years now. Inbleed has somewhat made me put aside Hardtek production. However, I do not regret it one bit as it has allowed me to get out of my comfort zone and learn all sorts of new things, in Metal composition for the most part.
Thomas: I would have loved to be in a Metal band. Unfortunately, when I was a kid, instead of signing me up for drums or guitar lessons, my parents went for trumpet… So later on, I mixed Gabber, which was the natural course of events. (laughs)
3 – What made you attracted to the Hard scene?
Raph: Nothing!! And especially not playing at 6 a.m.
4 – Why don’t we talk about your new album, clearly defined by this (successful!) mix between Metal and Frenchcore. How did you come up with the idea to mix both genres?
Arty: This album is the result of a relentless work since Inbleed’s first days to find the perfect alchemy (according to us) between Metal and Hardcore. As for me, though I am not 100% satisfied yet, the album has nothing to do with our first EPs, we most certainly have passed a milestone and, I believe, have found our own style.
Thomas: When we were just starting as Inbleed, we did little more than make remixes of Metal tracks that we enjoyed. Quite soon, we wanted to go the extra mile and create our own tracks.
Raph: It’s their idea, I’ve got nothing to do with it. And if I had been asked for my opinion, I would have found it aberrant. Still, it is evident that it works. By the way, what is Frenchcore again?
5 – Can you tell us about the way you produced your album? Is the music composed with true musical instruments or has it been made solely electronically? (As the result is definitely convincing, and one could certainly be fooled!)
Arty: Except for the track Before The Dawn in which we had Benjamin Baret’s help (from the band Ne Obliviscaris) to play the guitar, all the other tracks were composed with virtual instruments. I’m really touched that you think it to be convincing because it really isn’t a piece of cake to make a virtual guitar sound just right. As far as production is concerned, I’m the one in charge of all the instrumental aspects, guided by Thomas, especially when it’s about Metal, as he has a far greater Metal culture than I have.
Raph: As far as the vocals are concerned, I recorded everything at home, almost all of it during the first lockdown [Editor’s Note: between March and June 2020]. At first, we would gather around a computer and we’d record my voice in the simplest conditions, to say the least. I feel like the new tracks sound better ever since I started to put more conviction and work in them. I also have at my disposal better technical tools than before.
6 – Can you tell us about the different collabs that can be found in this album?
Thomas: As for the different collaborations with Metal bands, I began by suggesting the project to Björn Speed Strid, Swedish band Soilwork’s singer. What you’ve got to realize is that this band is a flagship of Melodeath, so this opportunity was beyond a dream! On top of that, Bjorn is one of the best singers of the Metal scene and he has given us something unbelievable.
Afterwards, I chatted with Benjamin, Australian band Ne Obliviscaris’s guitarist. It is most certainly my favorite band, I am an unconditional fan. They have the most unique sound!
For the last featuring, I’ve asked Ju, the singer of Tech Death Gorod. We are all fond of this band, which is most likely to be one of the most talented ones within the French scene.
It has been a tremendous honor to be able to work with all of these artists and we hope that we will keep on with other bands for our next releases!
Arty: About Psiko’s collab, it so happens that I was stuck on a track, so I quite naturally turned to him for help as he had already invited us for a feat in his album “Game Grid”. We wanted to return the favor. And I think it was the smartest thing to do as Leaders is a pretty solid track!
Raph: I would like to point out how much the collaboration with Björn from Soilwork on The Dying Part of I has been educational for me. I have always had the deepest respect for that guy as a singer, and here I was, receiving his solo tracks without any effects, hearing a powerful work and having to add my voice to it, it was insane. You could go as far as to say it was more or less a singing lesson and it has brought me so much for the tracks that have followed afterwards.
7 – Tell us a little bit more about your musical influences, whether it be Metal or Hard Music? (or any other genre!)
Arty: I have a wide range of influences when it comes down to Metal. I’m not going to mention all the groups that have influenced me because we would go over all the different styles within Metal and there are a lot of them! Let’s just say that Melodeath (Amon Amarth, Mors Principium Est, Soilwork, etc.) is the style that influence me these days.
But actually, the Metal influences of Inbleed are mostly Thomas’s who, when I’m stuck, sends me about 15 tracks out of nowhere that just help me find my inspiration back.
As for Hard Music, my influences are also rather diverse, but as I’m more familiar with this style, I tend to be less influenced by it nowadays. Naturally, I must mention Micropoint.
And to finish with other styles, I feel like I must talk about Zardonic and Infected Mushroom.
Thomas: If I were to start talking about my influences metal-wise, I would ramble on for 3 days and more! And I actually wouldn’t even know where to begin! Depending on the day or mood, I can go from listening to MetalCore (a little bit) with Trivium or Parkway Drive to technical Death such as Gorod, Allegaeon, Psycroptic, Doom, Swallow the Sun or then again Ghost Brigade. However, the style that I am most keen on is Scandinavian Melodeath with bands such as Dark Tranquillity, In Mourning, Before the Dawn, Be’lakor…
That’s the great thing about Metal, there’s a style for every situation.
Raph: I have many influences as well, although I haven’t got the slightest name to mention within the Hard Music genre. On the other hand, I am a huge fan of bands such as Katatonia, Faith No More, The Ocean or Nine Inch Nails. I also listen to other things that systematically spark off a controversy among us, like Leprous or Lana Del Rey! (laughs)
8 – Which Hard Music track, based on a Metal track, is the best one according to you?
Arty: In my opinion, the one and only master is Neophyte.
Thomas: Same for me! That guy’s the boss. We often played his tracks with Arty when we started as Inbleed, namely Coming At You Strong which sets the dancefloor in fire in a matter of seconds.
9 – Which show or festival has had the biggest impact on you? As a festival-goer and as a DJ?
Arty: I can’t answer this question as a festival-goer, there are too many of them! Good or bad, all the gigs I’ve been to are all engraved in my memory forever! I’ll say just this: Parkway Drive, Hellfest 2018, one hell of a show!
As a DJ, I’d say the first time we played on our Sound System wall Teknovores, an unforgettable moment!
Thomas: As a party-goer, Hellfest 2017. What you’ve got to understand is that this festival is the moment we are all waiting for all year long. Metal, beers and buddies: pure happiness!
I’ve attended a great deal of concerts but I think the one that has left the biggest impression on me was Atari Teenage Riot. It was in Japan at the 25th floor of a building. The concert started at 7 p.m., all the dudes in the public were in shirts and ties as they had just gotten off work. When the band made its appearance, the crowd went hysterical! Everybody was jumping up and down… It was pure madness!
As a DJ, I agree with Arty, the first time we played with Teknovores.
Raph: As a member of the public, I feel compelled to talk about Hellfest. We usually go there every year, all three of us and my best friend. We have a solid gang, we have the greatest of time, we drink a lot and we get our butts’ kicked. Parkway Drive is one lifelong memory as well. Except that, I spent an amazing time in front of Stone Sour in London in 2012. And in front of Metallica too. These are always gold moments.
As a musician (to change the perspective from DJs for once), the first concert that comes to mind is the one with my band, in John Lennon city-owned cultural center in Limoges (France) which was fully packed. It definitely was some crazy night.
10 – Do you have any undergoing project? What’s in the cards for Inbleed this year 2021?
Arty: Since the hope of seeing the events go back to life is not for the near future, we’d like to record a live concert of our album, so as to offer something more than a simple listening. In any case, we’re working on it.
Thomas: I would love to say plenty of concerts for 2021… But that ship has sailed! So yeah, we are going to try and work on our live concert!
Raph: I hope I’ll be able to play as much as I can in order to fill the immense void 2020 has left inside of me. For Inbleed, I’ve got to say, I’m pretty eager to start working on new tracks, I would like to go beyond my limits and outdo myself vocally.
11 – Any last words for our readers?
Arty: The last word is for Hardcore France who has had the balls to produce us all the while knowing that it’s not quite ordinary. We would like to thank them for their trust and their work.
Thomas: Stay Metal!
Raph: Thank you ID Software for releasing of Doom Eternal!