Texan blackened crust miscreants Wildspeaker have a penchant for making music of the abrasive and filthy variety. Equal parts black metal misanthropy, doom despondency, crust vitriol, and hardcore aggression, their debut full-length Survey the Wreckage is a shining (hideous?) example of the best (worst?) that can happen when (sub-)genre restrictions get left behind and bands progress freely into previously unexplored territory.
We checked in with the band to talk about their unusual amalgamation of the extremely extreme, the Dallas Fort Worth scene, and the DIY aesthetic.... and somehow the topic of the card game Magic: The Gathering snuck in. While you peruse what the five-piece had to say, for your ear-and-brain-cell-destroying enjoyment we present the raging nastiness of Survey the Wreckage, available for free download and streaming at Wildspeaker's Bandcamp.
On their influences:
Our guitarist Zak’s dad Dan is an old LA punk rocker so he was fortunate enough to be raised on 1980s West Coast hardcore punk. I (Natalie) am a big fan of crust, skramz, and ’77. Our other guitarist Nelson is thrasher, our bassist Mike is a huge death metal dude, and our newest member Ricky is into hip hop, grindcore, and post-rock. We all have extremely separate tastes but what we have in common is a love of hardcore. One of the guys will share a riff he’s come up with then everyone else puts their spin on it until it’s Wildspeakered into submission. Some of our most influential bands for this project include Fall of Efrafa, Young and in the Way, Oathbreaker, Xasthur, and Woods of Desolation.
On their lyrical subject matter:
The lyrical content that I write is anti-civilization, anti-human, anti-oppression. A lot of the imagery I use comes from fantasies of human downfall, subsequent rise of animals and nature rightfully taking charge. There are a few Magic: The Gathering references sprinkled in.
On the Dallas Fort Worth metal scene:
We have been extremely fortunate to be involved in the DFW metal scene. Luckily the metal and punk scenes do an excellent job of intermingling. It creates so many neck-breakingly excellent, diverse bands. In Texas, extreme music is kicking. We have solid hardcore, grindcore, crust, death, black, thrash, and doom metal music. We hope we weave somewhere in between them.
On keeping it DIY:
We enjoy having a direct hand in every step of our music. The more we chip in together, the more satisfied we are with our projects. Zak has been the mastermind behind our DIY recordings. Since Zak and Ricky’s old band downpour., he has been experimenting with different equipment and techniques to solidify the sounds we are evolving. We have received excellent pointers and mastering help from our endlessly talented friend Garry Brents.
On upcoming releases:
We are in the process of writing new songs for our split with our buddies in Cara Neir. We are aiming for a 2016 release of the tape on Broken Limbs Recordings. Last night at Garry's house, Ricky, Zak, and I had the pleasure of hearing the dynamic songs Cara has in the works. We are foaming at the mouth with excitement.
On the common ground with Magic: The Gathering:
Garruk Wildspeaker, from whom we take our name, is a Magic: The Gathering character. He is a planeswalker that fiercely protects the forests and animals. We are all Magic players so we have an open challenge to anyone who attends our shows. If you beat all five of us, we will give you a free t-shirt.
Wildspeaker is currently working to release Survey the Wreckage later this year on vinyl via Sell Your Soul Records. In addition to said full-length, the Sylvan Demo and Revenge of the Hunted E.P. can be streamed and downloaded via their Bandcamp page. Wildspeaker, in all their crusty meanness, can be kept up with via Facebook, as well as on Instagram and Ello at @wildspeaker.