Call of the Void is a relatively young band for as much as they have accomplished since forming. They signed a deal with Relapse Records before releasing their debut in 2013. Their records have been solid and reviewed positively across the board. They’ve toured extensively with awesome bands like Bleak and Inter Arma: making a reputation on fantastic and intense live shows. AYFKM is their first release since losing their vocalist after releasing Ageless in 2015. With their crushing live performance and praise-worthy studio releases, I had no worries about how the new release would be.
AYFKM is short and sweet with five tracks clocking in at about 15 minutes. The album opens with a couple minute fuzzed out doom riff that abruptly kicks into a circle pitting stomper. From the first line it’s apparent that Patrick Alberts has taken to his adoption of the vocal duties like he was born to it. Title track “Are You Fucking Kidding Me” is a mid-tempo bounce that will be an obvious crowd favorite. I look forward to piling onto strangers, holding onto their hair, trying to reach the mic and screaming “Just take a knife and fucking end it!” This track has been stuck in my head since I first heard it and will be my new road rage soundtrack while fighting my way through rush hour traffic. “Throwing Bullets” masterfully crashes from D-beat thrashers to blasting grind. “On and On” and “Never Enough” are both crushingly heavy while still managing not to lose any of the bounce of the prior tracks.
If you are looking for some new avant garde masterpiece to challenge the metal genre, you won’t find it on this album. There are many parallels from this album to anything that Trap Them has been doing since 2008, and I hear a little bit of the songwriting approach, swagger, and attitude of the last couple Nails records. While not necessarily the most original, AYFKM is just so good and fun that it doesn’t matter. Call of the Void have allowed for not a trace of fat on AYFKM. There is no filler and nothing feels out of place. My only complaint about this release is that I wish it was longer, but I just keep the whole album on repeat and easily listen to it four or five times in a row. Definitely pick up this record and catch them on tour.
Check out “Get In the Van,” here, the first track from AYFKM.
Call of the Void are some of the nicest dudes I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with in the metal world, so I decided to take this opportunity to talk to Patrick Albert (guitar, vocals) for a bit. Read on to see what he had to say.
With your former vocalist leaving, was there a learning curve for you to take over on vocals? Was it intimidating to step into his shoes?
There was a learning curve for me, but it wasn’t much of one. When this band first started I was the vocalist before Steve (Vanica) and I sang back ups for a lot of these songs, so it was a natural progression. It was a challenge to get the stamina up and learn how to scream properly without blowing my voice out on tour.
AYFKM is your first release since Steve Vanica quit the band. Did you have any trouble living up to the bar you guys set with Ageless?
Honestly we (or just me) were concerned about whether or not audiences would take us as seriously as before. It’s a tough loss to have the front man of your band leave. Usually when a singer leaves a band, they can never find the same sound they had before. We tried to get some people to replace Steve, but ultimately we decided it would not be a good idea to bring another vocalist into the band. We had to do it ourselves.
Has the meaning behind the band/lyrics changed at all with the line-up change?
We all chip in on ideas for songs. It has always been a team effort at some point to get the lyrics finished. Writing lyrics is the toughest part of the song process. Nothing has changed, still the same ol’ Void.
Did having double duty change your writing process at all?
Not this time around, we had written these songs before Steve had left the band. But since he was gone we had to delay the recording process of the vocals for a while. As of now we are focused on getting more vocal stand out pieces written in our music. We always keep vocals in mind when we write, now we are just more focused.
I’ve played with Call of the Void since you took over on vocals and you KILLED it.
Thanks man, I feel this has been the general consensus about my vocals. Most say we now sound like a more intense band that has only improved.
What bands have you played with recently that have stuck out to you, and what does the tour driving playlist sound like?
Man that is a tough question. I would have to narrow it down to Phobocosm, The Lion’s Daughter and Mutilatred. Our driving playlist is usual someone’s iPod on shuffle and some good podcasts.
You guys seem to appreciate the alcohol. What is your alcoholic beverage of choice to enjoy after a show?
Yes we do. After the show? More like before, during and after the show. I usually drink vodka and Miller Lite. The other boys enjoy Coors. We work hard so we can tour, once tour comes it’s time to have fun and bond.
You guys and Primitive Man both make disgusting and hateful music, but you are all some of the nicest dudes ever. How does that even happen? Is it a Denver thing?
First off, I want to say the Primitive Man is hate and the most hateful. We do not stack up to them at all. Most of our hate is usually directed at ourselves. Hate can be love too. We like to show gratitude and respect to people who show interest in us and allow us to do what we do, so we will always be nice. We all have depressive tendencies, we like to have fun and be funny too it helps.
Speaking of Primitive Man, Ethan (Lee McCarthy) is involved with half of the active metal bands in the world. How long until you guys start a side project that is basically just Call of the Void and Ethan?
That actually already happened once and failed. We had a project called Feral Womb or something like that. Then Primitive Man decided to get really serious and tour a shit ton, Ethan got Vermin Womb started and the rest was history. We just had no time to do it. It was Jon/Ethan from Primitive Man and Gordon our drummer and I. I wish we could have kept it going.
Anything else you want to talk about? The new record will be dropping not long after this article goes up.
Not that I can think of. Thanks a lot for the interview.
Thanks to Patrick for his time!