Black Dahlia Murder – Interview with Ryan Knight, by Ollie Thomas

It’s the first night of the Black Dahlia Murder’s latest tour of 2012’s “Ritual”. They’re doing a two-night stint in London, and before the first show, guitar master Ryan Knight invited me onto the band’s tourbus to chat about it.

Your last album, Ritual, came out last summer. Was there any particular direction you wanted to go in when you went into the studio? Was it a fun album to make?
It was a really fun album to make, yeah. We wanted to step everything up a level but still make a record that sounded like The Black Dahlia Murder.

How do you think the fans took that? Do you think they got that, and understood it?

Yeah, I think they did. All the fan reception and reviews seem to be pretty good, they get that we’re trying new things and stepping TBDM up a level.
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You have a very diverse fanbase, kids who love all different genres like the Black Dahlia Murder, what do you think it is that attracts them to your music?
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When the band started, I wouldn’t say we were metalcore but we had a lot more of a metalcore sound, so that attracted a lot of that crowd. Our look was a lot more hardcore/punk, so that helped people get into us who wouldn’t usually like death metal. Now I’d say we were a lot more death metal though.

Have you got any plans for 2012, maybe a new album?
We should be writing for a new album at the end of the year, we’ll all go and write/record, there should definitely be a new album in 2013.

I saw you guys at the Bohemia stage at Sonisphere, and think the show went down really well. How was the experience for you guys?
It was a fun show, though our drummer had some technical difficulties, which made it harder for us to hear the beats. I don’t know how it sounded in the crowd, but I think the show went about as well as it could have.

Did you see any of the other bands that played at the festival?
Yeah, umm, we checked out all of the Big 4. We couldn’t see all of their full sets, obviously, but we saw all 4 bands and that was really good.
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So, who’s the best?
Haha, my personal favourite is Megadeth, but it was my first ever time seeing Metallica live and that was really cool!
Tonight’s gig is in Camden, which some would argue is the heart of the UK Alternative scene. Have you had a chance to check it out? What did you think?
Uhh, Camden? Nah. I haven’t, I dunno if any of the others have though….

Do you have any rituals you have to keep entertained whilst out on tour?
Well, we’re sharing this bus with Skeletonwitch, so we’re just going to get drunk! Usually if there’s internet we go on there, you know? Talk to your wives, girlfriends and kids, if you have them.

What do you do to get ready before a show? Do you play any scales or anything to warm up?
Yeah, we all warm up. I’ll play some of the harder riffs, and maybe practice a solo or two.
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The stage out there’s pretty small, have you had a chance to check it out? How do you think that’ll go down, and have you brought anything to work it in your favour?
I think it’ll be pretty wild! Brought anything like the set? (Yeah) Well, we’ve got some newer songs, and some older songs. I’d say about half the new album, but yeah a real mix.

Photos by Jolie Swannack