Playing their own brand of ‘Evil Rock And Rock Horror Metal’, the devilishly monikered The Heretic Order were formed from the ashes of Gibraltar based alt-metal contenders Breed 77. With a wide range of musical influences, and a highly theatrical show, the five-piece have been making big noises in the metal world since the release of their debut album ‘All Hail The Order’. We caught up with the evilly named, yet thoroughly image-shatteringly charming guitarist Count Marcel La Vey at at Bloodstock Festival, to find out what the band is currently up to. Breathing the serpent's breath: Eamon O’Neill.
How are you today, sir?
I’m very well, thank you. I’m surprisingly well considering that I’ve only had three hours’ sleep. It’s a boring story – no party or anything, it’s just getting up here early. We were first on the Sophie stage this morning, and you have to be here for all the load in and stuff, so it was an early start.
How was it opening on the festival this morning; a few hungover heads to deal with?
For sure, for sure! People were waltzing in, kind of making their way to the stage. After a couple of songs we saw some people getting into it. The tent filled up, so we were all happy about the turn out.
Surly if there’s any band guaranteed to wake you on a Saturday morning it’s The Heretic Order?
Yes, the evil that is The Heretic Order – we’ll wake you up!
How would you describe the band?
Well, basically, we’re a classic metal band. We’re very, very influenced by classic bands, and we like to bring that influence and bring our own take to it. And you know, we think we’ve done it pretty well.
You mentioned the ‘classic’ metal influence there. Are there any bands in particular that you think of when you say that?
Well, there’s a bit of Judas Priest and Merciful Fate, and you can hear some Iron Maiden in there. King Diamond too; you can see Lord Ragnar Wagner [Guitars Vocal], has the King Diamond feel.
So it’s a little bit of a change from Breed 77, who some of the guys in The Heretic Order used to be part of?
Oh, a big change. I love Breed – it’s a different kind of metal, I don’t know how to put it – but, The Heretic Order, like I say; it’s a lot more of a classic feel. We don’t look to the past, but our music’s very influenced by the past.
Here at Bloodstock, people enjoy a bit of the classic, don’t they?
Yeah, and hopefully we will be back again. We really like coming to Bloodstock. We did it a couple of years ago; it was actually our second show that we did together as a band, and we played the Jägermeister stage.
The Jäger stage is the perfect place for any band to start at Bloodstock, isn’t it?
Absolutely; it’s in the middle of everything, and so, you know, if people don’t like you, they will notice you anyway! *laughing*
So you’ve played the Jägermeister stage, the Sophie Lancaster stage; it’s got to be the main stage next, hasn’t it?
Well, if you look at the way the gradient’s going, hopefully. That would be a dream, but you know, even just coming back here again and playing the Sophie stage; anything - we love just coming to play here at Bloodstock.
With a couple of the guys coming from Breed 77, they’ve obviously brought a wealth of experience to the band.
I have another band called Affluenza, but the experience these guys have is a whole other level. They’ve travelled the world, so they know what they’re doing, so I tend to listen a lot and try to take in as much as I can, and try and do it right.
Moving on, and your latest album ‘All Hail The Order’ album came out a year ago.
It came out in September of last year. It’s been going very well. We’re happy, the German label – Massacre Records - is very happy so far. It’s a good home, and it’s a great name! You know, we managed to get the right one, in all senses; it just sound’s right, doesn’t it?
You’ve done plenty of opening slots for various bands; which have you enjoyed the most, and are there any you’d love to tour with that haven’t yet?
Oh, that could go on forever. We have played with many bands that we’ve enjoyed playing with. One that might stand out for us is Exodus. We played a couple of shows with them, and in London, and man; that was a crazy show. I don’t know if you know Exodus fans, but I’d say they’re kind of on a level to Slayer fans; they absolutely love their band. But the good thing about that crowd was that they gave it all for the whole night, from the first band to the last.
That must make you work harder.
Of course that makes you make harder, because it’s not like us and Exodus are similar. Musically, we can say that about quite a few bands that we play with nowadays, so it’s always kind of hard to support a band that is – let’s say very thrashy, for example, and we come along and we’re a completely different take on it. But that’s the only way to break through, so we try and take away whatever we can.
Who do you think you would be a good fit, musically for The Heretic Order to tour with?
Let’s see; well, King Diamond would be a dream come true, and the whole band just loves King Diamond. If you’ve seen the band, you know there’s a big influence. But who knows? A lot of classic bands; Priest – I’m not talking small time here, I’m talking big!
Have you done many festivals in Europe this summer?
Yeah, we went to Spain and we played a festival called Metal Lorca. I think we complained a bit about the heat here yesterday, but over there, it was just like 37 degrees, and playing in that was a different kind of torture, a different kind of test! But yeah, we made it, and it was good.
Finally, what’s next for the band?
Next, we’ve got a tour at the end of September, and then we’re heading up to Mammothfest. So we’ll finish Mammothfest and then the tour’s going to be about ten days / two weeks, and then after that we’ll go and record our second album.
So busy and exciting times ahead?
Oh yeah. We go and record the second album, hopefully in Spain with [producer] Will Maya, who we recorded the first album with. He’s done The Answer – they’re a great band. He’s the right guy to work with. He’s worked with Breed for years, so that’s where we got the connection. He knows what we want, and we know what he can give us. He is the extra band member that we need when we go and record.
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The Heretic Order Autumn 2016 U.K. Dates:
28 Sept - London, Lounge 666
29 Sept - Evesham, Iron Road
30 Sept- Wakefield, Snooty Fox
2 Oct - Brighton, Mammothfest.