Posted on July 11th. 2017
Questionnaire by Jason Houston on behalf of METAL TO INFINITY WEBZINE BELGIUM
Jason: Bill I’d like to welcome you to Metal To Infinity and thank you for taking time out of your very, busy schedule to speak with us. I understand that your band Mega Colossus was formed in 2006. Could you share with us the story of how you first hooked up with the other members of the band and came to form Mega Colossus?
Bill: Thanks for chatting with me. Your zine rules! So…I knew all the guys from previous bands’ shows together. We all were riding up to Virginia together to see an Iron Maiden show, and on the way they played me a tape of some new stuff they were working on. I was looking to play with new people, one of the guys was moving away.. I immediately wanted to help.
Jason: I know the band’s home town is Raleigh, North Carolina. Is there much of a music scene there these days?
Bill: North Carolina is really on an upswing right now. So many strong bands coming out of here. It’s a great close knit scene. We have bands like Widow, Walpyrgus, Salvacion, Knightmare, Children of the Reptile, just off the top of my head. Everybody knows each other, it’s really great to be here right now!
Jason: Bill, how old were you when you first started playing the Guitar? Did you take lessons or would you consider yourself to be more of a Self-taught player?
Bill: I got my first guitar when I was 14. I wish I had started sooner, really. I was totally self taught. Schooling makes me hate things, so I’ve always been pretty careful to keep music fun,. It should never be a task, you know. That said, I have learned so much from people I have listened to and played with that maybe “self-taught” is not such an accurate term. We all learn from our surroundings, you know.
Jason: What do you remember most about your very, first Guitar?
Bill: It wasn’t really very nice, I was really happy to upgrade as soon as I saved up enough money to do so. The cool thing about my first guitar is that it was a Tiesco del Rey. I found out later that Eddie Van Halen’s first guitar was also a Tiesco del Rey, which is funny, since Van Halen was one of the biggest reasons why I got a guitar at all.
Jason: Do you remember what was the first song you learned to play on Guitar?
Bill: I always have tried to concentrate on making my own music, so I didn’t learn a lot of other people’s music. I do remember one funny moment when a dumb guy at school said he learned “Stairway to Heaven” in a day, and I was like “if he can do it so can I” so I worked super hard learning the solo, which was really hard since I didn’t know much about guitar at all. I realized later that that was probably not the part of the song he was talking about. I was so dumb I went straight for the hardest part. But I think that was good for me. As far as learning a whole song, man, it’s been so long…maybe “Working Man” by Rush?
Jason: In addition to playing Guitar you’re also a Lead Singer. I was curious if you’ve always been a Singer since you first started playing music or did you first start out on Guitar and then get into singing Lead like a lot of people more out of necessity, you know maybe because you couldn’t find anyone else who you felt could cover your material/songs as you would want them performed?
Bill: Oh no, I’m not a lead singer, who told you that? HAHA! No. That is Sean Buchanan. I only do backups. I can hit specific notes, but I have a weird voice, so no… strictly supporting role as a vocalist. It was great to find Sean, who can sing the things that I have in my brain, but I don’t really sing well enough to be heard!
Jason: Could you tell us the story of how you came to name the band: Mega Colossus, great/original name…. I really love it!
Bill: So glad it works! Well, we were Colossus, you know, giant rock man, pretty obvious choice for a band like us. But eventually, we just needed to differentiate ourselves from the many other bands called Colossus out there, haha!! We precede all of the ones I found (except for a hip-hop artist called the Colossus), but in the end if one is lost in a sea of doom, noise, and christian hardcore bands with your same name… then it’s time to power up!!
Jason: Now I read on the band’s Facebook page that the members of the band are into Sci-Fi, Horror, Fantasy. I have to ask you Bill how do you fuse they interest/influences into the band?
Bill: Fantasy and Sci-Fi really move me, and we only want to write about things that are exciting, so it’s easy when all these cool works of art give us ideas. Plus, the aesthetic of that kind of fiction lends itself well to our style. We intend our music to instill a feeling of adventure, so adventurous subject matter just works.
Jason: How many albums/CDs has the band released to date?
Bill: Two full length and two EP’s so far, more to come. All were released on CD. Drunk on Blood was pressed on vinyl, but is out of print. Hyperglaive is currently available on vinyl or CD, and all our music is available digitally. We are hoping to reissue everything on vinyl eventually.
Jason: Are you the primary songwriter in the band or does everyone contribute to the songwriting process?
Bill: Definitely a group effort. Usually one member comes up with a basic structure, but it gets severely reworked once everyone gets involved. Some songs begin with the lyrics, which come mostly from Sean, his brother Luke, and myself. Some begin with a riff or a full structured set of song parts. It’s a real mixed bag approach.
Jason: I read that at some your recent shows that the band has been selling Hot Sauce. Could you talk a little bit about this? I mean I know Michael Anthony and Joe Perry sell their own brand of Hot Sauce. Is there an official Mega Colossus brand of Hot Sauce. If so is there a way fans can purchase this Hot Sauce rather than just by attending a live show?
Bill: Yes, we are super fortunate to have Corey Eshelman on our team. He is our bass player’s brother and a hot sauce genius. His company is called Pleasant Burn, they are located in Durham, NC. But you can get it from us here: http://colossus.kungfustore.com/all-products/colosauce-cls25.html
Jason: I understand also that the band is currently raising funds for an upcoming European Tour. Tell the people how they can help out if they’d like to and when is this European tour expected to kick off?
Bill: Indeed we are coming over! We will begin our tour in Karlsruhe Germany on the 22nd of September. The tour will take us to Italy, Slovenia, Austria, the Netherlands, and back to Germany to end at the Harder than Steel Festival, September 30th in Dittigheim, as well as a farewell show in Marburg October 1st. Everything is in place, but fuel, equipment rental, transportation and such make this a pretty expensive endeavor, so if you were thinking of picking up some stuff from us, now is a good time, haha! All of our stuff is available directly from us at http://www.meltedfaces.com/ There are also links there to get in touch, we’d love to hear from you.
Jason: Has the band ever toured outside the United States before or will this upcoming European Tour be the first time for the band to tour overseas?
Bill: This is our first time, there have been a few false starts over the last few years, but this time it’s for real!
Jason: I know that one band that is listed as an influence on the band’s official FB page is Iron Maiden. I have to ask you if you’ve had a chance to listen to the new Iron Maiden CD: Book Of Souls… If so what are your thoughts on the latest Maiden CD?
Bill: Yeah, just saw them on that tour. I think that record is totally epic! Reminds me a lot of Brave New World, in a really good way. I like how they have evolved over the years. And still one of the best shows you can see.
Jason: When you look back on the band’s History I have to ask you do you have a special memory or something that you had the opportunity to experience because of being in the band Mega Colossus?
Bill: Mostly I am thankful for all the friends we’ve made and gotten to hang out with. There are so many people in places I would never have gone if not for playing music with these guys. But I guess the memory at this moment that stands out the most is the moment when we had almost everyone who had ever played in the band on stage at once, rocking together at our 10 year anniversary show. 2 drummers, 4 guitars, so many smiles and fists pumping and horns. That was a triumphant feeling!
Jason: As far as when the band records I was curious if everyone’s in the same room at the same or do you guys record the modern way where everyone records their parts separate?
Bill: It would be great to have all the equipment, facilities, and time (and money) to rock together and record the process, but I think practicality dictates that most bands in our style have to “assemble” their records, for lack of a better term. To fully document all of the ideas in our music with good quality we have found it necessary to track separately for final recordings. We demo everything, so when we go into the studio we have a good plan, and that happens all kinds of different ways, but for finals we have to isolate.
Jason: Is there an album/CD or band that you’ve been listening to lately that’s really been Rocking your world? If so could you please tell us about that Cd or the band?
Bill: Oh man, I can’t even pick just one. Pretty into the new Mutoid Man record, pretty prog, but also thrash in places, Pretty excited oddly about the new Styx record, haha! Seriously, it’s really good. Children of the Reptile, from our area put out “the four weapons” recently and it’s really badass! Ooh.. and I just discovered a Carmen (Spanish prog rock) record from 1976 that I didn’t even know existed. My listening is all over the place these days.
Jason: Is there an album/CD in your music Collection that you could point to that had a major influence/impact on you and you would point to and say that album, that band is why I’m a professional Musician today… If so who’s that band and what’s the album?
Bill: There are lots of those, but if I had to pick one, it would be the first Van Halen album. That record sets the bar pretty high for both energy and execution, and those are the things I’ve placed above all else in all my music endeavors.
Jason: Is there anything left that you’d like to say to all The Mega Colossus fans out there Bill before we wrap this up?
Bill: Thanks for caring about what we’re doing, it really makes it that much more fun! Let’s rock together!!!
Jason: Could you please tell us where on the web people can go to follow you and the band and keep up to date on all your activities?
Bill: Our website has links to all the various ways people keep in touch. The address is www.meltedfaces.com We’re pretty stoked on it, thanks to Sanch Hawes for making it look so classy. Just get in touch with us.We’re not always the greatest at publicizing what we’re doing, but we are getting better at it, and we love to hear from everyone.
Jason: As a last question, please bring us up to speed about what’s currently going on with the band overall?
Bill: Tightening up our game for this sweet Europe tour, opening for some legends in the meantime, then it’s time to make a new record!! Stoked about all this, we have a really fun year ahead.
Jason: THANKS AGAIN BILL!
Bill: Gigantic thanks to you as well! Hope to see you at a show!