Horrorpatch’s Chris Hammond sat down with Sebastian Stodolak the leader singer of Heavy Metal outfit Scream Maker. We discuss the new 2022 fourth album release Blood King (which we have our review here) and many other things.
So tell me what would you say to someone who wants to know about Scream Maker?
I would say that if he is seeking meaningful music both in terms of composition and lyrics he just found the right address. We’re inspired by classic bands such as Judas Priest or Iron Maiden but we add to this the special flavour of our own personality. If you like to drive fast our music is the best option to have it on.
On your first album, you released a song in Polish entitled “Cisza”, tell us a little about recording in Polish vs. English? And do you still rotate this song in your setlist?
This is the only song in Polish that we have ever recorded. And yes it is always a part of our setlist. The reason we’re not recording more songs in our language is that English is more universal. But there is one more thing: Polish – I am very sorry to say – is full of ugly consonants like “ś”, “ć” or “sz” that are not very pleasant to the ears.
When listening to Scream Maker’s discography I hear many musical influences, Dio, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest and Iron Maiden, is there a band or artist that people might be shocked to know influenced you all as artists?
The creator is kind of a sponge soaked with millions of experiences, not only musical ones. But you can not really tell which of those experiences are shaping your work and which are not. All of them are to a degree. And I am pretty sure it would take a very good psychotherapist to make a credible map of one’s inspirations. But ok – answering your questions. I guess you’d be surprised that Lord Acton, the great political philosopher, had a great impact on our new album – at least lyric-wise.
What was it like when you were growing up, How did you go about getting music and what was the first actual album you purchased?
I have a long musical journey behind me. It took off early. In kindergarten, I was a kid happily dancing to anything that resembled disco. My musical taste did not change much until I was 12 or 13 when I was introduced to Metallica by my schoolmates. In the meantime, I became a fan of Michael Jackson. I remember that my mom bought me the first cassette with the outstanding album “Dangerous”. I doubt the cassette was legal though. It was very cheap. Piracy was a great problem in the ’90s in Poland.
So we are here to talk about the new album that just recently came out entitled Bloodking? tell us about it, how long did it take to release, What was it recording it?
It took as – and it is a shame – almost 6 years to release this album. It would be boring to explain in detail why, but let me give you keywords: lots of shows, lack of time, line-up changes, pandemic.
I noticed that the band has cover art for one of the albums designed by Roslaw Szaybo.
Not this one! 🙂 “Living in The Past” (2014) cover art – and it is our second musical release – was designed by this artist.
For those that don’t know Szaybo is a well-known designer who is responsible for many memorable album covers from Judas Priest, Elton John, Santana and Bob Marley.
My question is how was to have someone like Szaybo create an album cover for your band’s album?
He was an amazing person. When we met him he was already in his eighties but still full of energy and ideas. He was also a kind heart with a great sense of humour. We managed to bring him up to a show of Tim Ripper Owens, a former Judas Priest singer, and arrange their meeting. Sadly Rosław passed away in 2019.
The one thing that listeners will notice right away when listening to the album Blood King is how well produced it is.
Who produced it and does the band take an active role in production too?
Well, actually it was the band that produced the album. We have two sound engineers that mixed it – Tomasz Zed Zalewski and Alessandro Del Vecchio but we were the ones who decided on the final sound and first of all none but we had shaped the compositions and arrangements. We gave our sound producers specific directions on where to go with drums or guitar. The process was long since the pandemic kinda made us all lazy, it was fragmented and dispersed. We did a bit of guitars here and vocals there. It is not very orderly manner but it happened to work. And what is worth noticing is that all instruments but drums were home recorded. Our bass player has this magic skill and we used it.
So what is the touring situation like over in Poland, Where can fans find tour dates?
Hard. It is difficult to book dates. But we managed to organize a tour that actually is happening right now. We’re playing 5 shows in Feb in 5 major Polish cities. All the dates are on our website screammaker.com
So Many fans might know polish bands like Vader and Behemot, but what would you say the Polish Heavy metal scene is like these days?
It’s very diverse and full of interesting young bands. Sadly many older ones are not very active now as if they became a bit disappointed that you could not really make a lot of money out of heavy metal. But that is the truth.
In my review for Blood King I alluded to the fact that the album feels timeless, was this a conscious effort or did you just do what Scream Maker does and create killer metal music?
Haha! Yeah! Every artist dreams of composing an evergreen and does his best to do it. I hope that your impression will be shared by many.
So I was also doing some digging on Youtube and found some very interesting acoustic songs that were done in the past, Do you think it’s a good thing for a band to be able to play different styles and evolve their sound?
Yes. We had a small affair with acoustic playing, we even did like 3 or 4 acoustic tours but, to be honest, people do not want it. They want it loud and electric! But to be flexible music-wise is very important, it gives you a different perspective and opens new possibilities. Thus it makes you evolve as an artist.
Is there anything you’d like to Promote? Tell everyone where you can get the album
Our album is in my humble opinion a worthy piece of heavy metal with an important message. You can order it and see for yourself I am not overexaggerating 🙂 Just send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s refreshing right now to be able to throw on an album and just be able to lose yourself in the music, I want to thank you for putting out such a well-constructed album release in Blood King.
Thank you for taking an interest in our music!
Scream Maker’s new album Blood King is available now and the newly released video for the song Mirror, Mirror will give a taste of what listeners are in store for.