Crank this to 10.1 of 11
|    Editor's Pick
Sludge, Progressive metal
Sounds Like:
ISIS, Cult of Luna, The Ocean
The three piece band from Indianapolis, Indiana have delivered a downright inspiring self-titled debut that is certainly in the running for one of our top albums of 2017. So inspiring that it has prompted a new review format that we are excited to unveil. Peeling back the onion to expose this very intelligent trio that meld heavy and beauty so well. Welcome our new detailed Q&A format.

Rotation11: Our favorite track is "Barbarelo" for its tremendous bass guitar-work and contrast. So crisp and engrossing with elements of sludge, Post-rock and progressive metal. Can you tell us a bit more about what went into the making of this epic track?

Drude: This is one of our favorites as well. We wrote this song faster than any of our other songs. We generally take 3-6 months per song to give each piece its due diligence, but we finished this one in around a month. This is truly the song that flowed the most naturally out during the writing process. I like to think of it as the best representation of which direction our sound is going. Other tracks on the record were written a long time ago. For example, we wrote "Drude" in 2012 and decided to name the band after that song, as it was the first one we wrote that sort of solidified what we wanted to sound like.

Rotation11: Which band would you prefer to tour with... Sleep, Isis, or Crowbar?

Has to be Isis all the way. Isis is actually the band that brought us together as people and led to us forming this band. The common thread, so to speak. All the Hydra Head Records stuff is what we grew up on and I like to think it definitely shows in our sound.

Rotation11: What is a “Drude” and  how did you come about the name?

Drude: European folklore has always been one of my (Jordan) favorite subjects to read about. I came across Drude in some book and did a little research and thought it was an awesome concept and band name. A Drude is essentially a malevolent spirit who can jump from host to host and generally haunts people's dreams. The name can be found today in the German word for pentagram, Drudenfuss. In one of my favorite books, Faust by Goethe, Mephistopheles uses the term Drudenfuss, but I never made the connection until years later when I came across the Drude as a creature of myth. There is little information about their folkloric origin which intrigued me even more. Seemed to add up to a solid band name. It's certainly not unheavy.

Rotation11: Who designed your album cover? Every time we look at it we see a different image. How does it tie to these five stellar tracks?

Drude: The art from the album cover is from the 1500's and is a slanderous image created by the Catholic church to depict Martin Luther being played by the devil like an instrument. Martin Luther made a name for himself challenging the greater perversions of the church and advocating personal liberty in conjunction with faith and devotion. For example, Martin Luther advocated putting an end to "indulgences" by the church. They would have somebody go door to door and ask what sins you have committed and then would give you a bill. Really, the church was charging money for forgiveness. This, among many other things, upset the church greatly and he was excommunicated for not redacting some of his writings. We are not a religious band by any stretch of the imagination. Many of the themes of this record deal with the rejection of religion (Eidolon) and the importance of self-discovery (Barbelo). I feel that Martin Luther is a great example of disturbing the status quo of something one thinks is inherently evil and remaining steadfast in that. I don't agree with a lot of his viewpoints and philosophies, but he still remains and extremely important figure in history. That image that has always been one of my favorites and, given it's context, it seemed to fit perfectly with the spirit and feeling of this record. Corey Clark, our bassist redrew it from the original for the album cover.

Rotation11: What is your favorite venue to have played in?

My favorite venue we've ever played in would have to the 5th Quarter Lounge in Indianapolis. It is no longer with us, but ask anyone, the vibe is unmatched. It was an old American Legion building with the basement converted into a bar and venue. It is sentimental for us, but truly was a great venue through and through.

Who was the most impressive band that you have played with?

Drude: Wow, that's a tough one. We've played with so many amazing bands over the last 8 years. I have favorites for different reasons so I'll do a couple. I guess as far as pure musicianship it would have to be Mutoid Man. Those dudes are unreal. All amazing musicians and a treat to watch. Live show would have to be GWAR. I love bands with stage shows and getting to watch their system from backstage really made me appreciate the work they put into it. And the trophy for most impressively loud band we've played with is a tie between Order of the Owl and Conan. Being really really loud is painful and pointless if you don't have great tone, and both of these bands understand and practice that wonderfully.

Rotation11: The five tracks weave so well together, feels a bit like a concept album. Being from Indiana, where did you get such bizarre one-word song titles and what do they mean?

Drude: I usually only name songs once they are pretty much completed. Different songs are named for different reasons. I'll go track by track on this one. DRUDE is self explanatory and can be answered satisfactorily by reading the answer to question 3 of this interview. BARBELO is basically the essence of god in Gnostic creation stories and can be found across different religions for the past 2,500 years or so. I came across it in the apocryphal Gospel of Judas, where Judas tells Christ at the Last Supper that he knows that he (JC) is from the "immortal realm of Barbelo" which, in my opinion, gives a new perspective to the whole Judas betrayed Jesus thing. Seems like a really important thing to leave out of the Bible. OASU is the name of the being that guided me through the most intense LSD trip of my life. Showed me things I still don't have words to describe but can only attempt to explain with great difficulty. I remember asking it for it's name on 3 different occasions and all 3 times it told me it's name was Oasu. I still have no idea what it was or what its purpose or meaning was, but it was a significant event in my life. DEMUR means to raise doubts or objections or to show reluctance. I was seeking a title for this track to go along with the Bertrand Russell quote that serves as the only words. Given the content of the quote it seemed perfect. An EIDOLON can be described as an idealized image. My favorite definition is "an image without real existence; phantom; apparition."

This album floored us after the first listen. Such power and class it has a very mature sound? Have the three of you played in other bands prior to forming Drude? Can you tell us more?

Drude: We have all played music since we were kids and the three of us have been playing together since 2009. We all have similar musical backgrounds. We all got into heavy stuff at an early age and eventually all took the time to mine for the really good heavy stuff. We all sort of had the same taste when we had gotten together and that is a big reason why we have stuck together so long. The possibility for creative differences is extremely low in this band, which is rare I feel. Corey (bass) mainly came from a Death Metal background and still plays in an amazing DM band here in Indianapolis. Dyllen (drums) came from the Converge/Botch/Coalesce school of thought more than anything else. And I (Jordan) got on the heavy train through a lot of technical and progressive metal stuff. We all sort of evened out around the same central interests by the time we got together. All three of us currently play in other bands as well and we might even tell you about them if you ask nicely ;-).

What is your favorite beer to partake in during one of your sludge sessions?

Drude: Really none of us a really big drinkers. We all love beer, but the classic staples of our band practices has always been a combination of coffee and weed. We'll usually drink at shows but at practice alcohol is a very rare thing. No particular reason, just how it happened. Our favorite beer, however, is yet to be released from one of our favorite Indiana breweries and may or may not bear our name on the label. More information on that will unfold in the coming months, so stay tuned.

Rotation11: Give us some final thoughts about your vision and why Rotation11 fans should put this album in heavy rotation.

We want to make good, honest heavy music. That's it. I like to think that if you have a band full of guys with good taste, a love for their art, and the drive to practice once a week for 8 years, something good is bound to result. This album is a monument to the brotherhood that we've built over the years. Like it or not, it is us in every sense. Hard to say what exactly is special about it beyond that, perhaps that's for somebody else to decide, but I do know that the music of Drude is very personal to all of us. We have worked really hard on these songs and have put out an album that we are extremely proud of.

Drude is a clear Editor’s Pick for our site and deserves to be heard. What excites us most about this album is that it will appeal to those who enjoy majestic fretwork akin to fans of Pelican or Tool and those who appreciate the pummeling sound of true sludge sound of High on Fire. - 9/10/2017

Band Members:
Corey Clark- Bass
Dylien Nance- Drums
Jordan Smith- Guitars

Track Listing:
1. Drude (8:51)
2. Barbelo (9:40)
3. Oasu (6:49)
4. Demur (4:15)
5. Eidolon (6:44)

Follow Drude: Bandcamp / Facebook
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