Sandy McRitchie - Satan's Empire
💿Hi, it’s a pleasure for us to have on Hardrockheavymetal Sandy McRitchie of SATAN'S EMPIRE! Welcome!!
On March 20th your new album was out entitled HAIL THE EMPIRE; we were really impressed! Can you tell us something about its composition process and style?
The songs for the album were created over a period of roughly two years. Most of the ideas were run through at rehearsals and arrangements were tightened up as the song was built.
These songs were all original compositions by the current band and were not from the Rising generation of songs, so it was nice to get a fresher chemistry with the new band.
💿Among others, the vocals of DEREK LYON were literally awesome on HAIL THE EMPIRE; his health's problems are now overcome and he returns to you as a central figure in your band..
It was touch and go for Derek for a few months but he eventually got the operation that he needed.
It was tough for the band as well, trying to find a new singer but knowing we would never get anyone to come up to the skills that Derek brought to the band as a vocalist and lyricist.
💿HAIL THE EMPIRE is out on DISSONANCE Productions; Can you tell us something about relationships with them and if it has a scheduled a vinyl version?
Dissonance are a METAL label and have worldwide distribution through Plastic Head.
Garry knows the CEO Steve so it was a case of presenting the new material of a quality that would impress and it did, hence the contract.
I think at the end of the day it depends on sales, so if we sell enough CDs then potentially we can look at a small run of vinyl.
💿Amazing cover for HAIL THE EMPIRE. Can you tell us something about it?
As per our first cover for Rising, it was designed by Andy Pilkington of Very Metal Art, loosely based on an idea from the band. he came up with the first draft and it blew away our minds! he is very talented and just seems to know where we are coming from. He has done artwork for various of our label mates and other bands that we know.
💿 How is difficult is it to promote a new work after the lockdown drama? Are you scheduling, as many other bands, gigs for second part of the year, or is it too soon?
We had just got Derek back into the band and were planning our album release gig on the 22nd March, when the lockdown occurred. Most gigs we had up to July have now been postponed till later and we won’t know any definite dates till the pandemic is reduced.
Hopefully those dates in the latter part of 2020 will still go ahead but we will have to wait and see.
💿 After many years from your return, the affection of fans all around the world, also thanks to internet, was amazing, just like for many NWOBHM bands..Did you expect that?
Not at all. When we reformed at the end of 2015, we had one gig for 2016 which was BroFest up in Newcastle. However, the reception that we got that Sunday morning was amazing!
It all really escalated from there and has been an ever growing group of like minded people - including you Gio - who just love what we are playing.
If you had said to me 5 years ago, you will have 2 albums out, have played in Europe and working on a third album, I would have called you crazy! However, that is what it is now and we are living the dream, so to speak!
💿 Thank you so much for your time! See you soon on Hardrockheavymetal, hoping to see you also on the stage as soon as possible.
Likewise Gio and it is always nice to meet up at a gig wherever and whenever we can!
Stay Safe and be well!
Live Pics @Hardrockheavymetal at GRIMM UP NORTH FEST 2019