Exclusive Interview with Josh Keech we discuss his album Warrior in the Clouds Pt 1and more..
1- Hello and welcome to Metal Music Midwest, first off, thanks for taking the time to do the interview, could you give our readers a brief description of the group?
Where is the band from?
Hi! Thanks for having me on here, I really appreciate it. Well, it’s not really a band, it’s my own solo project. It’s been in the making for many years. After looking to join/form a Metal band and getting nowhere, in 2020 I decided to go solo! I first made a YouTube channel to try and help gain an audience and get myself out there, then planned on making this project to help get my name out therefurther. The main goal for my solo project is to show what I can do and the potential I have, and try to get bands together. My debut EP was released on 24th June 2022. I’m from Bedford in England.
2- Warrior in the Clouds Pt. 1 is the band's debut material, how long did it take to write?
It took many years to write these tracks. I originally wrote them between 2016 - 2019 (ages 16-19), but from 2020 to now I perfected them to where they are today. They’re a collection of ideas I wrote as I was learning guitar, and as I progressed the ideas turned into songs. They are also a collection of the many styles that influenced my guitar playing.
3- What musical influence inspires the band's compositions?
As I just said, there’s a wide range of different styles and influences in the music. Because it’s a solo album I felt like I could experiment with different genres and show my full range of influences. The main bands/artists that influenced me the most for my EP are Metallica, Megadeth, Joe Satriani, Marty Freidman, Randy Rhoads, Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Jimi Hendrix, Iron Maiden, Slayer, Machine Head, Nirvana and Obituary.
4- The group started in 2022(?), can you tell us how did you came up with the band?
I first thought about making this project back in 2020, but it took over a year to start recording it and then releasing it. I briefly touched on this earlier, I was struggling to find bands that played what I wanted to play. And I was struggling looking for people to get a band with. So I finally found my path and decided I needed to get people coming to me, instead of aimlessly getting nowhere. I felt making a solo project was the best thing for me to get myself out there to people. The fact I had this material also made it an easy decision to make. I’m very lucky to have my friends Alife and Kim, it wouldn’t have been possible without them. They offered to help me record the EP and produce it, as they have experience making their own songs with their band Lilac Fall and I have none. We held conversations throughout 2020, I sent over demos from my home studio (very Avant-Garde with no drums and not in time). I originally had 12 tracks for a full length, but we decided to split it in half and just concentrate on making the best 6 songs we could. We began recording in June 2021 and after a lot of stoppages along the way we finished in April 2022, mixing was complete in May 2022.
5- The EP title is Warrior in the Clouds Pt. 1, can you give us details about the content and more in depth meaning to this title?
The EP as I’ve said has various styles, I’d say it’s more Instrumental Rock/Metal, with Heavy Metal and Thrash Metal moments. Although you can hear all of my influences I mentioned in the music. It’s all instrumental because I wanted to follow some of my guitar virtuoso heroes Joe Satriani and Marty Friedman, having a vocalist never crossed my mind. However for my future solo projects I’d like to keepthem primarily instrumental. There isn’t a proper deep meaning for the title, I got the idea from watching this old advert on TV. It was like this “cloud warrior” with a bow and arrow, it always stuck out as something that would look cool as an album cover. Then as time went on, the more I thought about it I came up with the title Warrior In The Clouds. I thought that would be a fantastic title for an album, and eventually I decided to use it for my debut album. The artwork I made myself, I learned how to use Photoshop in order to do it.
6- Each member of this project is part of another band, how do you maintain a good balance working together?
Interesting question! As I said earlier my friends that helped me with my project have their own band, it’s super different to what I’m doing! But over the time of recording my project we had a lot of stoppages to deal with, one of which included their band endeavours. They were working on an EP of their own during this time, titled The Lilac EP. Also they had a few gigs during our time recording, but it didn’t really affect our time to work on my project. Because I had to go to their house to work on this we had many other stoppages that caused us to not work on it at certain points. However we worked really well on this project, because we’re mates we had a lot of fun making these songs. We were very professional but had a laugh at the same time, it was a very nice environment to make an EP.
7- Have you performed any shows in your area? If so, how receptive and supportive are the people to your music?
I haven’t played any proper live shows in my area, however I have done a livestream on my YouTube channel playing the whole EP in its entirety. That went down really well, my subscribers enjoyed it very much saying the songs sounded even better live than on the recording which I was super happy about. I got a lot of support from my family, friends and subscribers, including a shoutout from one of my subscribers and YouTube friends which was fantastic!
8- Are there any upcoming shows or tours you can tell us about?
Unfortunately I have no live shows upcoming, however I am in the process of putting together a live band in order to play the songs live locally around Bedford. I am really hoping I will be able to play them live and gain more exposure for myself and my music, but we’ll see! And of course you can always check out my livestream entitled Warrior LIVE, if you would like to check out the songs being performed live. I am also in the process of clipping the tracks and uploading them separately for ease of viewing. However the quality isn’t the best I’m afraid, my internet wasn’t brilliant that night!
9- Thanks for your participation, finally, what is the best way to get a hold of the band, in case someone wants to book or promote the band?
Any final words?
The best way to get in contact with me is through my business email;
I really appreciate this interview. I hope people reading this will check out my debut EP and give it a chance, it’s available to listen to on my YouTube channel, all streaming sites and Bandcamp. I’m currently working on part 2 and I’m going to release it as a full album hopefully early 2023, and in physical format. I really hope you’ll be excited for that as well.
Thank you for this interview, I really appreciate it!