Crossover/thrash metal has been a tried and tested method for many years but there are bands continuing to proudly fly the flag and breathe new life into the genre. One of the frontrunners if New York’s EXTINCTION A.D. Their highly anticipated new album Culture Of Violence is poised to drop and frontman Rick Jimenez can’t wait for it to be released into the world.
“I haven’t listened to the album since maybe a week after we got the final mix as I’ve been waiting to listen to it again with everybody else. I didn’t want to feel like the songs were 175 years old by the time they were released. Everyone who is in a band has a skewed version of what their records sound like but in my opinion, we approached this record from start to finish in a very different way. We’ve always been a bit ahead of ourselves, writing material and it carrying over into our next releases,” he says. “This time we didn’t want to follow old habits. By the time we record it’s new to everybody else but it’s old to us and this time we were still there a week before going into the studio hammering out the details and I think that urgency and freshness have really benefited us. Our first single, Mastic was written like a week before we recorded it and then went out and played it live and it was so exciting. We’ve never done that before. It gets me so psyched talking about it”.
As well as adopting a more spontaneous approach to the songwriting process, EXTINCTION A.D. also started experimenting with their sound. “We have never really been a band for rules or whatever but I feel with this new stuff it almost feels like there maybe was rules before!” Declares Rick. “Some of the new stuff just sounds so much heavier. This might be guitar nerd stuff to some people but we’ve always tuned to D Standard as we’ve always loved our 80s and 90s stuff but this time round we started messing around with C Sharp and I was like ‘Yo! This sounds rad’. So we messed about with that for a bit and then threw some songs written in different tunings just to keep you guessing. Typically I would do most of the songwriting and collaborate with Pete who is our old bass player but still the unofficial fifth member of the band and my writing partner. We’ll send riffs and demo’s between us and then try and Megazord them together. Lyrically, 99 times out of 100 I’m going to do what I want to do and I have the final say but I do appreciate the input from the guys with regards to patterns or harmonies that I hadn’t thought of. I’ve experimented a lot this time round by adding layers to my vocals. I didn’t want to just be another hardcore guy screaming over every song. I like to have that kind of push and pull throughout and I feel our songs have progressed as a result. It’ll definitely be a bigger challenge live! I always want it to be fun when we play and I also acknowledge that the crowd wants to get away from the fucking doom and gloom of everyday life and have a good time with us.”
Culture Of Violence feels like quite the appropriate album title considering what is going on in the world right now. However, it wasn’t the title EXTINCTION A.D. had planned in the initial stages. “It’s essentially my reactions to what’s happening in the world, that we’re at this point where the whole world is in turmoil. When I’m writing a song I don’t want the song to become a history lesson or a lecture, but it’s my reactions to specific things,” explains Rick.
“We had a different title to this album, the final track National Disaster, that was going to be the album title. After the pandemic hit, I was like ‘Dude, this title seems so on the nose. Who knows when this record is going to come out?’ Then I was like ‘Yo, what do you guys think about calling the record Culture Of Violence?’ I can’t possibly see that not being the album title now, because it sums up the entire record and it was kind of completely coincidental because it was the last song lyrically to be written.”
EXTINCTION A.D. have never been a band happy to just plod along in the status quo, they are passionate in their approach and in their mindset, fully prepared to be outspoken and challenge any form of inequality or discrimination. The world needs more people like Rick Jimenez. “We just did a tour with CATTLE DECAPITATION, CREEPING DEATH and THE LAST TEN SECONDS OF LIFE then played with a band called BLEAK who I have no idea how to classify but they were an awesome band. Then after that we played with two hip hop artists and it was just so fucking cool!” Rick says. “These were some of the best shows. I’m going to go on a bit of a tirade here but listen to all types of music, play with different types of bands, embrace the people you tour with. There’s no reason to keep other people out and live in a box but on the other hand, make sure you fight intolerance with intolerance and that is just something I don’t really feel like I get to talk about enough. I feel like it’s really important. And that’s just something I would love for EXTINCTION A.D. to champion a bit more. There are so many bands that are just as worthy that need this little push and you get that push by the bigger bands taking you along so this shit doesn’t fucking die.”
Culture Of Violence is out now via Unique Leader Records.
Like EXTINCTION A.D. on Facebook.