Standing out has never been an issue for SikTh. Even surrounded by alternative minds on bills from Tech-Fest to 2000 Trees, the Watford sextet just keep pushing the bar to even more extreme heights. Following on from an interview last December, guitarist/producer Dan Weller and I talked about secretly supporting Metallica; the ultimate fantasy band; and SikTh’s next musical move…
You’re set to destroy 2000 Trees 2018. What thoughts and feelings are floating around the SikTh camp at the moment?
We’re feeling good. Lots of travelling this year – Australia, Japan, and South Africa. The band feels exciting. We are as inspired as ever, and playing as tight as ever.
We can’t wait for 2000 Trees – such a cool location.
When you were growing up, which gigs had a real impact on you?
Pantera at Ozzfest ’98; it seems like yesterday. We’re all so sad that Vinnie has gone.
Incubus playing London pre-S.C.I.E.N.C.E. coming out was special – I felt like I was watching something classic. I also got to see Slipknot’s first UK show at the Astoria.
I think the gig that probably had the biggest impact on SikTh in the early days was Botch at the Underworld touring We Are The Romans.
What was your first ever festival experience? How did it go?
It was Download in 2003 – we played. It was a good way to begin my festival experience. It was the year that Metallica were secret headliners on the same stage and same day as us.
Any festival survival tips?
Wet wipes, battery packs for your phone. Paracetamol and plastic bags. Hydrate – it’s good to not be walking around with a headache!
If an inebriated stranger were to ask what you sound like, what would be your response?
Melodic, progressive metal. A friend of mine once told me his young niece described SikTh by saying it sounded “like robots fighting”.
If you could jam onstage with anyone, living or dead, who would you choose?
MJ on vocals, James Hetfield on rhythm guitar, Vinnie Paul on drums, John Deacon on bass, Nuno Bettencourt on lead, Billy Joel on keys. The greatest band ever. Well, maybe with the addition of Freddie Mercury.
Do you have any special plans for your set at 2000 Trees?
Just to have fun, play tight and make sure everyone in the crowd has a great time. It should be hot and sweaty.
Which other 2000 Trees bands are you looking forward to checking out?
Enter Shikari, whom I’ve worked with for years but haven’t seen for a while. Black Peaks are an amazing band that we all love.
Beyond 2000 Trees, what have you got planned for the rest of the year?
Writing a new record and travelling lots.
After the success of Opacities and The Future In Whose Eyes, is there more music in the pipeline at the moment? When we spoke last December, you mentioned some possible future single releases…
We are beginning the process now. We want to make the best metal record anyone’s ever heard. It’ll take as long as it takes.
Watch this space.
SikTh headline the Axiom Stage at 2000 Trees 2018 on Saturday July 14.
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