Interviews: Psonen

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Thrash Metal band, Psonen from the USA. Check out the interview and follow the band on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1.Where did you get the idea for the band name, you planned it or came out just like that?

The bird Psonen is a part of Native American mythology here in Maine where we are based out of. We liked the concept of the myth and being able to tap into our local culture and ecology in our writing and performances. It focuses us on our community and history, and gives not only theme, but purpose.

2.Why did you want to play this genre?

What other genre is there but metal? I'm kidding, but in all seriousness, each of us comes from a metal and hard rock background. It was destined to be.

3. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

Not entirely! Some us have come to the band through advertisements for new members, some connected through friends and former members, previous projects etc. We really are a motley crew!

4. Each band member favourite band?

Pat: Novembre, Rush, King Diamond, Death, Katatonia, Old Fates Warning

Steve: Dissection, Between the Buried and Me, Dark Tranquility, Danzig

Ian: Radiohead, Led Zepellin, NoFX, Refused, Faith No More, NIN, Slayer 

Andy: Candiria, Dillinger Escape Plan, Silverstein, Cephalic Carnage, Meshuggah

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

We write to share our artistic expression and to merge emotion with music. Thematically, we try to stay within a story we write for each album, but a lot of our songs use allegory to convey more than one meaning. Some of the topics covered include human rights, environmental protection, preservation of history, depression and mental illness, interconnectedness, and consciousness + the mind.

6. Where was your last gig?

Our last show was a socially-distanced gig in Harmony, Maine last fall. Prior to that, we put on a show of our own closer to home last February prior to lockdown. Both were a lot of fun!

7. Where would you like to act?

We would love to have the ability to play down in Portland, ME or even out of state. Hopefully when the pandemic ends we will be able to share our music through more areas of New England!

8. Whom would you like to feature with?

We're happy to share the stage with any like-minded groups playing metal or hard rock. We were lucky enough to open for The Anchor and A War Within and as we mostly stay in New England, we'd love to keep doing shows like that around here. 

9. Whom not?

The only shows I could see us turning down would be for bands that promote racism, hate, and inequality. Music has a place for a full range expression and emotion, but it can always be done in an inclusive way.

10. Any of you has ever suffered from stage fright? Any tip for beginners on how to beat that?

We've all been in previous projects, so that is mostly a thing of the past. We've definitely experienced it earlier in our musical careers however. The best thing you can do is to clear your mind before the show, which can be accomplished with some brief meditation, and to remember that people are there to see you. The audience *wants* you to succeed! And don't let a small mistake derail your performance: own your mistakes and don't stop playing - the key is to move on and keep the song rolling.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

Pat: Andy LaRocque (King Diamond), Chuck Shuldinger (Death), George Lynch (Dokken/Lynch Mob) 

Steve: Darkseid (MGLA), George Killian (Nile), Adam Jarvis (Misery Index, Pig Destroyer) 

Ian: Garrett Finlay (his teenage skate park pal slash slap-pluck-funk-punk bassist slash kick ass human) 

Andy: I try to write on theme with the band's motif. As my first band tackling this genre, I really had to work on shedding off my previous projects and influences to take on a new voice for Psonen.

12. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

That's a good question, but I'm not sure we've been around long enough to weird requests yet. Although, if you're reading this out there, you could be the first!

13. What do you think of your fans?

We love our fans! It's been so amazing to see people locally (and occasionally around the world) listen to and enjoy our music. We live in such a beautiful world whose people are more connected than ever, and there has been no greater thrill than being able to connect with and share our artistic output with all of them.

14. What do you think of our site?

You're doing great work! We appreciate all the hard work sites like yours do in giving a voice to lesser known bands and local music from around the world. It makes us feel like more of a member of a global community, and less like an individual actor in our community. We're all in this together!

15. Something add?

Psonen, the Snow-Bringer in (Abenaki / Penobscot) Native American mythology, is a large bird that brings snow by spreading its wings. We use this creature and myth to conjure images of the dark of winter and the blistering cold that accompanies it, the cycle of life and death (or death and rebirth), and also to bring some of this rich local history to life. As they say, if we are not well versed in our past, then we are destined to repeat the same mistakes.

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