In Corona Corner, we are asking musicians how the outbreak has effected them, how did they adapt to the situation, what did they learn. Dreathus, vocalist and guitarist of St. Louis based Black Metal band, Xaemora, speaks how he deals with Corona madness.
Hi! How are you doing during corona outbreak?
Great! Hope all is well with you folks and everyone is staying safe and healthy. A lot of people in this country (USA) are going batshit crazy over being quarantined or “confined” but as someone who never goes out much anyway other than to work, the grocery, and the occasional shows or band rehearsals/shows, I’ve been totally fine with being home for the last few months.
What have you cancelled/postponed due coronavirus?
Nothing was officially canceled but in the weeks prior to going on lockdown we had been trying to organize a photo-shoot for promos for the new record and started tossing around ideas for set lists and planning to get rehearsals and shows set up to promote our new record when it came out. Originally I think we planned on releasing the new record around April 28th I think. But after only two weeks of quarantine in our area, I saw people starting to go crazy and the lockdowns were being extended so I just decided to get everything on the internet and just release it asap around April 1st. Just to get it out there. It was a time where people were stuck at home so I figured, if you’re stuck with not much to do, at least have some new music!
How the global coronavirus pandemic is directly impacting bands?
I mean its definitely affecting major touring bands who make most of their income from touring and all that but we are not one of those bands! The most its affecting us, is setting back when we can play live and all that.
How are you keeping your fans during this chaotic period?
I will sparsely post on Facebook and Instagram. I’m not a big social media guy. I should probably let somebody else in the band just take that all over! We don’t have any real news right now aside from the new record. I think it’s lame when bands post random bullshit to interact with fans. I know it’s probably a good thing to do but I just can’t.
What will metal look like when we re-emerge from isolation?
There will probably be a ton of new music. Most musicians these days have some sort of home studio set up so we can only imagine new music. I know I planned on writing a ton. I’ve written some, but not the Symphonic Black Metal double album opus WITH Live Orchestra and Full Choir I had originally set out for haha.
Who will suffer the most after all: musicians, organizers promoters…
Everyone will. But I think most importantly we should think about those venues we love to go to or play at. They are hurting the most. I don’t care about the corporate ticket companies whining about lost profits. I’m concerned about the small capacity clubs who bring in the small, underground bands that only so many people know about. Those venues that take a gamble when a band like Xaemora comes to town ya know. The venues that lose money by even turning on the lights but still pay us so we can eat while we’re on the road. Those are the venues that will hurt the most and the ones we should all do our part to help.
What is your isolation soundtrack?
I’m digging the new Valdrin album right now. Before quarantine I was listening to the new album from the Polish Arkona, new albums from Abigail Williams and Volcandra were on my regular spin too. Other than that I’ve mostly just been listening to a lot of death metal while I work out. When I’m not going to and from work I don’t have a ton of time to sit down and listen to albums. I don’t just do songs here and there, I have to sit down and listen to the whole album. That’s how I want people to listen to my music too. There is a reason why albums are assembled in the ways they are. They tell a story or paint a picture in your mind!
Besides gigs, what/whom do you miss the most?
Nothing really. I spend most of my time at home and have for several years now so I’m honestly enjoying not being around strangers and catching their plague.
Do you have any rehearsals during quarantine? If yes, how do they look like?
We haven’t so far. I myself have been taking the Covid protocols very strictly and seriously. Thus, I really haven’t ventured out of the house for much of anything other than groceries and supplies. I’m pretty sure if I got Covid, I would die because of all the years of heavy drinking, smoking, and drugs in my youth haha! But also I’m taking measures to keep my family safe and healthy. I’m certainly hoping before the end of 2020 we can get back to rehearsals and maybe even start playing live. We have never even played any of the songs from our new record together as a full band! We were excited to do just that and then the hole world went to hell.
Thank you so much for your time. Stay safe!