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10 Quick Ones with KK FOSSOR of THEM – October 2018

| 17 October 2018 | Reply

According to a recent press release: “With an impressive concept that combines the most significant components of US power and thrash metal and songs that focus on lyrics about spooks and horror, Them are one of the most unusual new metal acts. Their debut album Sweet Hollow (2016) already more than hinted at the artistic potential of the six-piece. Their successor release Manor Of The Se7en Gables sees the group surrounding frontman KK Fossor (ex-Coldsteel) present an album that takes up thematically where its predecessor left off but goes on to explore the stylistic extremes of this musical genre even further. “Manor Of The Se7en Gables sounds harder, darker and technically more sophisticated than Sweet Hollow,” main songwriter Markus Ullrich sketches the benchmark data of the latest release, adding: “At the same time, fans may be taken by surprise by a number of changes because we have unmistakably continued to evolve as a band during the past two years.” The German guitarist, who was among the founder members of prog metal band Lanfear before joining Them in autumn 2013 and continues to be a member of speed/thrash metal act Septagon and instrumental project A Cosmic Trail, values this evolvement: “I like it when songs also live up to certain technical standards. Luckily, we can easily fulfill those technical standards thanks to this outstanding line-up.”” We get frontman KK Fossor to discuss new music, influences, and much more in our 10 Quick Ones…

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets the band put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Manor of the Se7en Gables is the second part of 1 conceptual story beginning with Sweet Hollow. M7G takes place moments before the debut album’s “Sweet Hollow” ending. This second leg of the story finds the narrator “KK Fossor” and his assistant “Remsen” working together towards a very specific goal all the while experiencing death and destruction along their journey. A key element found in one of the bonus tracks will enlighten the listener as to what the bigger goal actually is. This bonus track will not be on the commercial release of M7G. It may be found on a future Japanese import release or directly via the band’s label SPV/Steamhammer.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

For me it started when I was forced to play the trumpet in school. I excelled at the instrument eventually performing various forms of music in Jazz and Classical forms. During my teenage years I fell in love with Heavy Metal as an art form and eventually formed a band called Overdryve with fellow concert bandmates. During this phase of my life I felt alive performing Heavy Metal music. Not only covers but original music was developed early on in this first heavy metal band.

3. Who would be your main five musical influences?

Billy Joel, Queen, Kiss, Iron Maiden, Metallica (In that order)

4. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be?

Dave Mustaine

5. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before?

Conceptual Horror Heavy Metal

6. What’s the best thing about being a musician?

There are two different parts to describe. As a songwriter, completing a final mix/master on an original piece and as a live musician, performing to a satisfied crowd.

7. When the band are all hanging out together, who cooks; who gets the drinks in; and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

I cook, Markus Ullrich and Richie Seibel handle the beer, and Markus Johansson is the first to whip out the acoustic.

8. If you weren’t a musician, what would be your dream job?

As KK THEM is it for me and as Troy, I already have my dream job as CIO (Chief Information Officer)

9. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over”?

The death of our drummer in Coldsteel. The band was an up and coming band in the late 80’s and the death of Dom Mincieli was a horrible time for everyone involved. Also the explosion of Grunge was the final nail in the coffin for that band even though our path continued with the group after Dom’s death. I wish I could go back in time and stop Dom from going out in his Camaro that one night. What would have happened if he wasn’t killed in that car crash?

10. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

Queen – Night at the Opera. I am fascinated how all the backing vocal tracks were achieved back in that time period of Analog Tape. If only I could sit there and watch without a saying a word would mean so much to me.




Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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