|Forces of Steel
Joined: 01 Jun 2014
|Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2015 1:25 pm Post subject: Forces of Steel Interview with Steve Ramsey of Satan
|It's been a long time since I last posted an interview, so I reached out to co-lead guitarist Steve Ramsey of Satan, a NWOBHM band that's always had a strong cult following. I remember discovering this band through the song "Break Free" on YouTube many, many years ago, and it instantly got me hooked. What is it about Court in the Act that makes it such a stellar entry in the world of heavy metal? I was very impressed by their refreshing musicianship that few other bands could level themselves up to.
Unfortunately, Satan went through different names and personnel changes, as well as adopting a proto-thrash metal sound in the late 1980s — only to come back more than twenty years later with a sheer vengeance. The current band consists of all the members responsible for the timeless Court in the Act, now with the recent Life Sentence claimed as their second album together.
Check it out here!
Here's a part of the interview:
|1. What factors initiated your passion for music? Why did you want to make it into a career?
I always loved listening to music, I had every Beatles album and everything by Queen and the Sweet in my pre-teens. It wasn't until going to see heavy rock and metal bands from age 14 that I developed the urge to be onstage like my idols, which were Priest, Motörhead and the Scorpions among others.
2. When and how did you first get acquainted with Russ Tippins? Before releasing Court in the Act in 1983, Satan went through many different vocalists, bassists, and drummers.
We went to the same school but it was the love of the same music that brought us together. We found that we'd bump into each other at various shows and eventually got talking. It was when Russ got a guitar and a few of us went round to his house to hear what he could do that the band was formed. He played us a few of our favourite riffs and we decided there and then to get guitars find a drummer etc. we had the name and logo before we had instruments! Most bands when they start out go through a few lineup changes before thins settle and we certainly did that. We were trying to create something different with our music and that caused various problems.
3. What did it take for Satan to get together and play music together again? Were there any previous offers to get the band to reunite?
Yeah, there were a few offers but we didn't really take it seriously until we were offered Wacken. That's a big deal so we wanted to do it. Sean was unable to play at the time due to a leg injury after a car crash and we recruited Blitzkriegs then drummer Phil Brewis to play with us. We had no plans to do anything more until, after five years of hounding by Oliver from the Keep it True Festival in Germany, and Sean suggesting that we could try rehearsing all together again changed things.
4. How did the writing process go for Life Sentence? Were there any concerns that came along the way? Prior to recording, how long did the band rehearse? Were there any demo recordings made?
Russ came in to a rehearsal that we had booked before a festival we were to play with a few new riffs and we loved them. They felt good to play like the old stuff and it kicked on from there. We decided from day one that it would have to sound like the predecessor to CITA and that helped direct the writing. We rehearsed and recorded over about three months. Every song was demoed using a four track recorder first.
5. The year 2014 was a very important year in Satan history. Playing your first shows together in North America must've sounded like a dream come true. Please tell me about your experiences during the tour that made it all worthwhile.
It was incredible. Everything we had dreamed of doing back in the 80's started coming true. South and North American shows including the famous Whisky A Gogo in LA where Sabbath first played over there, and shows in Scandinavia and other parts of Europe that we had never got to happened. Then of course there's Tokyo too! All those fantastic live albums in the eighties including Priests 'Unleashed In The East' and Deep Purples 'Made In Japan' were recorded and we were playing there!
Forces of Steel: Universal Metalhead Community
HEAVY + THRASH + SPEED + POWER
DEATH + DOOM + BLACK + PROGRESSIVE