If there’s one thing that 2014 will be remembered for, it might be the year that banjo broke through to metal. Wel, not really, but between Rob Scallon’s banjofied takes on metal songs and Steve ‘N’ Seagulls’ covers of “Holy Diver” and “Thunderstruck,” the instrument definitely found its way to more heavy music than just the intro to Mastodon’s “Divinations.” And now Steve N’ Seagulls have signed with Spinefarm. The Finnish quintet insist they’re not a novelty band, and next year, we’ll get the chance to find that out.
SNS’ countrified/bluegrass takes on metal classics is the result of three years of developing their sound, the band claim:
“It took us about three years to get the sound we were aiming at,” the band said of its origins and history. “We wanted to give a new life to songs we grew up with, not just do basic covers, and our agency provided the opportunity. Our agency needed a ‘concept band’ for theme events in restaurants. Now, we had been doing those kind of gigs before and knew the places to be probably half-empty. Still, it sounded like a fun project, so we took the job. After the first 20-gig tour, we wanted to keep on doing it and they kept on booking us gigs in nightclubs, pubs, cruise boats and such. After replacing our singer, we posted ‘The Trooper’ video on YouTube simply because we hadn’t published anything with the new lineup. Then it just took off somehow. But we aren’t complaining!”
The press release we got this morning claims that the band’s album, which they’re working on in Finland, is a mixture of the band’s love for music and a celebration of childhood idols. It’s unclear as to whether there will be any originals on it, but they’ve offered up a teaser of a cover of Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters,” so probably not. Also, a bluegrass band playing original music that aren’t metal covers sounds like it’s just a bluegrass band… Check the Metallica teaser below.