Interview With Blood Feast Guitarist and Founder Adam Tranquilli

Photo courtesy of Fotohans

by Mick Michaels

Recently, I had the honor of chatting with Blood Feast guitarist and founder Adam Tranquilli about the band's explosive, hard-hitting comeback, worldwide travels and the upcoming new EP release.

COSMICK VIEW: Hello Adam! Welcome to the Cosmick View. Thank you for taking some time out of your day to chat with me, it is greatly appreciated.

CV: It‘s not often that a band gets a shot at glory... but such is the case for Blood Feast and well deserved. Congratulations. What do believe has lead to this resurgence in popularity?
Adam Tranquilli:  I think that once we started playing new material live in 2014 people started to take us seriously.  From there we signed with Hells Headbangers Records, who were very eager to have us.  From there things have just gone upwards.

CV: Do you look at this resurgence as a second chance or more like a second wind?
AT:  More a second chance.  Back in the '80s we were still very young, and we didn't look at things in the long-term.  Now we're a professional band, and we have fun. 

CV: Do you see a major difference between the fans today and the fans back in the 80’s?
AT:  Here in the US the fans cut loose a lot more back in the '80s, they were crazy.  Keep in mind, though, that many of them have stayed the course and just can't do what they did 30 years ago.  They still come to the shows and cheer and bang their heads.  It's just that mosh pits and stage diving isn't really a good idea in their late 40s or early 50s.

CV: Has Heavy Metal really changed all that much from back in the day in your opinion?
AT: In general, yes, it has changed.  But not for us.  I write the same way.  It all comes out as Blood Feast.

CV: Since the release of Blood Feast’s album “The Future State of Wicked” last year, things have been on a steady rise for the band. Looking back over the last 12 months, what have been some of the highlights for you personally?
AT: The Decibel Tour show in Philadelphia with Kreator, Obituary and our label mates Midnight was huge.  So was playing at Headbangers Open Air with our friends Attacker.

CV: Does “personality” play an important role in an artist’s ability to create meaningful work?
AT:  You're getting deep here.  Yes, a person's personality definitely plays into their ability to create art.  But, of course, everyone is different.

CV: What particular aspects of your personality do you bring to the music of Blood Feast?
AT:  I'm a calm guy, but aggression builds up.  I get that aggression out via the music.  Otherwise, ha ha ha...

CV: Who are the guitar players that inspire you?
AT:  Tony Iommi, Buck Dharma, Ace Frehley, Mantas and Piggy.

CV: The band recently returned from Osaka, Japan, where you performed at the 2018 True Thrash Festival. Tell us how that came to be and what was your experience?
AT:  We played at TTF in 2015, and that was a tremendous experience.  We've wanted to go back ever since.  This year's edition was the 10th anniversary, so Mikitoshi Matsuo put together a 'best of' line-up, and spread it out over 3 days.  Hanging out with At War, Sacrifice, Hirax, Razor, Excuse and Riverge was amazing, as were all the fans.  It certainly topped our first trip.

CV: How would you describe the Metal fans in Japan compared to other parts of the world?
AT:  Lots of moshing and stage diving.  They're very thankful that we're there, and they're very generous.

CV: With performances in Germany, Japan, Peru and your upcoming Canadian tour, does safety play a large role in the way performances are booked? Is it a major concern for you?
AT:  It's not really been a concern so far.  There are places where it would enter our thought process.

CV: Is success in the music business a case of being in the right place at the right time or does hard-work eventually pay off? Do you believe in luck?
AT:  Both occur, but I believe in hard work.

CV: Do you feel the “Thrash” moniker classification creates limitations on your songwriting or don’t you bother with those sorts of things when you write music?
AT:  For some people I'm sure it can.  For me, this is how I write.  And I'm comfortable with it.

CV: How do you feel about bands that seem to change their sound with every album?
Would you consider it growth or more like experimentation?
AT:  Every situation is different.  If you're changing a little at a time, that feels like how life goes.  If you change radically from album to album it seems as though the artist is chasing a trend.

CV: In your opinion, what do you feel is the key for bands to stay relevant, especially in today’s over-saturated market?
AT:  In our case we just try to be ourselves.  Luckily all the current members are thrash vets, so the transition has been smooth.

CV: Depending on who you ask, the definition of “what is Metal?” can have countless responses. Do you think Metal has been divided into too many sub-genres or has this splintering actually provided Metal an opportunity to withstand the tests of time?
AT:  The splintering of metal into sub-genres helped to a certain extent.  It has allowed fans to find their own path.  But with that can come a bit of tunnel vision.  Does the listener turn their back on all the other sub-genres, or does he/she look with eyes wide open??

Photo courtesy of Barbara Preub
As far as the artists go, it can be limiting.  Blood Feast, however, is very proud to fly the flag for thrash metal.  It's what we do – we go out and thrash balls!!

CV: Tell us a bit about the band’s upcoming Canadian dates with Morbid Saint.
AT:  It was only 2 dates – Toronto and MontrĂ©al.  However, due to a severe storm here in New Jersey we had to cancel.  My town was one of the hardest hit – trees down everywhere, and the power was out for days.  We are currently working with the promoter to re-schedule.

CV: A new Blood Feast EP is currently in the works. Is there a working title yet?
AT:  The new EP is called... sorry, can't tell you yet.

CV: When can we expect to see the EP’s release and will it be releasing through your current label Hells Headbanger?
AT:  Right now I'd say end of Summer.  We definitely expect it be out on HHR.

CV: Give us an overview of your songwriting to recording process. 
AT:  I usually write at home, and then present it to the band.  CJ tends to demo his songs with rudimentary drums, and then give us an MP3 or CD.  From there we all throw in our 2 cents and make it Blood Feast.  For The Future State Of Wicked we didn't do any proper demos, save for "Off With Their Heads".  For the next album we'll probably do band demos for most of the songs, if not all.  From there we go to CJ's studio, LCBW Recording, and cut the album.

CV: What motivates you to continue making music?
AT:  This is what we love to do, so we'll keep doing it until we can't.

Thank you again Adam for spending some time talking and sharing with our readers. I wish you all the best and continued success!

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