2017 saw the debut release, Atrophy, from Ontario’s Minors which was an explosion of sludge fueled hardcore that seemed just as intent to cause harm as it was to drag earlobes through the mud and muck. The band’s sophomore outing, Abject Bodies, will hit the masses later this month and it’s another exploration into just how heavy handed sludge and hardcore can be. And particularly so since this quartet has tightened up their already bulletproof approach. Hints of Primitive Man and Converge come flying from the speakers on “Consumed” while a track like “Flesh Prison” relies on caustic grooves and relentless pacing. It’s this back and forth that the band excels at even better this time out but the production and overall delivery here will leave jaws firmly planted on floors the world over. Ahead of Abject Bodies street date we had the chance to ask guitarist Nick our set of Profile questions so read on to see what he had to say and be sure to grab a copy from the links contained within while you’re here.
How did you first get into playing music, and have you achieved the level of success that you hoped for?
I first got into playing music as a kid, I convinced my mum to give me the money to buy a bass guitar around 13 years old and then spent the next few years smashing it like Fieldy from KoRn hoping I’d somehow become a Nu Metal god. Times have been tough for the Nu metal scene, but I still hold hope I can make it.
What’s the most you have ever debased yourself to get your band onto a show, into a magazine or otherwise promoted, covered, and praised? (If you don’t have a story, please tell us any funny/embarrassing story.)
When I was 18 or so I won some tickets in a competition to go the Metal Hammer awards in London: I got completely hammered and spent the night talking up my own band to all who would listen and giving that endless praise that you only are capable of spewing when fueled by alcohol. Dimebag Darrell was there, Nikki Sixx and some guy from Machine Head at the time all got to experience me telling them how awesome they were and how much I liked their music. I woke up the next day thinking “Wow, I hope I never run into those guys again, I’m a fucking idiot.” To be fair to them, everyone was really cool despite me being an absolute liability, and Dimebag Darrell was so drunk he lost his shoes that night.
What do you see as some of the great things happening in metal and what are some of the worst things happening inside the scene right now?
Great things: I love that a more organic sound is coming back into focus instead of meticulously beat-corrected and hit replaced over the top sounding records, and conversely that technology allows for a band to be releasing amazing music and gaining a fanbase without having to spend 200 days a year on tour, as someone who seeks to have an artistic outlet, but at the same time is tied into the humdrum of daily life, it’s really amazing to be able to make music that reaches a wide audience without having to leave my family for vast amounts of time to get exposure.
Worst things: Intolerance, sexism and patriarchy in the music scene are right up there, I thought about some sort of canned “bad music is the worst thing” answer, but to be real, those are the real problems that take away from the scene.
It seems that now everyone has a passion for some cause and that those people are very open about displaying their passions. This is probably a very, very good (and progressive) thing socially. What are some of the most important issues (social/political/humorous/etc.) for you and how do you insert those issues into your music?
Yeah, most definitely. I’m a Political Science and Philosophy student, so I’m pretty actively involved in discussions surrounding social and political issues day to day. I think it’s extremely interesting that the world is in such a state of change politically, and that we have this massive platform in the form of social media for debate. For me personally, I’m interested in ethics on a large scale, it permeates everything, so I’m always interested in the arguments surrounding immigration, animal rights, human rights and so on, for example: Are laws more important than lives? Or, just because we like something, does that mean we should do it? When should we stop someone from doing something they enjoy? I’m not sure how much those themes translate literally into our music, but in an abstract sense they are present. Minors is an outlet for a lot of our frustrations, so it makes sense that the frustrations of those themes make their way into our sound.
What, or who, got you into metal and how old were you? How did your family take the news?
I remember having a tape of Ride the Lightning as a kid, probably about 10 or 11, and that I used to listen to it on my Walkman as my dad wouldn’t let me play it on the car stereo because it was “all about death and being miserable” haha. A few years later I bought a Black Sabbath record and my dad was blown away, he let me listen to that one on the stereo at home, I remember being totally stoked about that.
What advice do you have for aspiring music critics and outlets out there? How can we all better serve the genre in the eyes of a hard-working musician?
For me personally I really like to interact with journalists/critics and reviewers as much as I can, I try and invite those I get to know to shows when we’re nearby and like to hear about what they’re stoked on. Making friendships and relationships with people is becoming an under-valued part of the human experience it seems. Really, we’re all just music fans in one way or another so I think that if you approach making music or writing about music from that perspective you can’t really go too far wrong.
What’s your goal? You guys thinking world domination? Maybe saving a continent? Maybe invading one? Any interest in starting a cult? Do you guys have day jobs or hobbies you want to share? Whatever it is, please let us know.
I think as a band our interest really revolves around creating something authentic and genuine with our music. If at any point it didn’t feel like a natural and cathartic process for us, then we’d not be doing it. I think our goal would be to keep genuine and at the same time find pleasure from it, whether that’s the creative aspect of it or the live aspect of it. I don’t ever see Minors being one of those bands that plays the same songs night after night 10 years down the line or one that forces out records because we need them to exist. We all have day jobs of some form, a couple of us are brewers by trade, which is a huge plus: Our jam space has a legit brewery within it!
When you’re not obsessing over your own material, what are some of your favorite albums to listen to currently? (Feel free to include non-metal)
Recently we’ve been spinning: Idles “Joy as an Act of Resistance,” Candy “ Good to Feel,” Cult Leader “A Patient Man,” and Paul Jacobs “Easy.”
What is the 12-month outlook for you or your band? Any specific events on the horizon that the masses should be aware of?
Releasing our new LP Abject Bodies is a big deal for us right now, we’re stoked to see it finally brought into existence, we have a new video in the works and are planning some shows in the states for this summer. We’d love to hit some of the rad festivals coming up too, we’ll see what happens I guess!
Summarize your band in exactly one word. (Disclosure: If you include additional words, we will select our favorite for the final publication.)
Many thanks to Nick and Minors for their time!