Published Jun 22, 2018Ice-T's penchant for heavy music is well-known; the rapper fronts Body Count, so it wasn't a huge surprise that he'd post a picture with Max Cavalera (Cavalera Conspiracy, Soulfly, ex-Sepultura), but Homewrecker guitarist/vocalist Matt Barnum tells Exclaim! TV's No Future channel that he got a shocker when his friend tagged him in it.
"My first time finding out that Max Cavalera was into Homewrecker, it was [when] Ice-T posted a picture of him with Max, and someone tagged me in it because if you look by his crotch, there's a patch that has the Circle of Death – Homewrecker patch," Barnum said.
Though Cavalera was interested in doing guest vocalist on the title track of the Ohio band's Extinction By Design EP, his busy scheduled prevented it from happening (the band got Of Feather and Bone's Alvino Salcedo instead). Barnum hopes they can make it happen on a future release.
Unfortunately, they didn't line it up for latest LP Hell Is Here Now, which does include a feature from Vein's Anthony DiDio, and that isn't the only thing bolstering the release. Barnum explains the band's evolution, which culminated with this year's release.
"When Homewrecker put out our first release, Worms and Dirt, it was way more of a crustier, hardcore vibe, and then with Circle of Death we kind of opened the door to the metal realm, trying to see what we could come up with, and then I think we really found what we're trying to get across with Hell Is Here Now. It's just like straight-forward. It's got punk aspects. It's got death metal aspects. It still touches back to that hardcore stuff that was there on Worms and Dirt back in 2012, and I think it's just a mature mix of our last couple of releases."
Their shift to a more metal sound could allow them to break through the ceiling Barnum perceives on hardcore. Lyrically, the album is something of a concept album and takes inspiration from the titular "Hell."
"With the new record, it kind of just touches on the different interpretations of hell, whether it's the stuff you hear about in stories and shit or if it's stuff that's going on inside your head," Barnum said. "If you've got your own problems you're dealing with, that could be worse than getting sent to hell. We just kind of found stories and imagery to talk about in each song. 'Bound By Validation' talks about mental struggles, whereas like 'Land of the Damned' talks about constantly being surrounded by wondering if your country is going to go to war and who's going to bomb who next."
He also talks about the band's early days (including the house show that gave them their name) losing former vocalist Ryan Sposito, as well as how (and why) he and drummer Matt Izzi took over his duties, revealing he can finally scream without having a sore throat afterwards.
Learn all this and more in the players below.