Interview by George Archibald
Photos by Andrew Bastion
The Chaos and Carnage Tour is Shadow Of Intent’s first venture to being out on the road. Vocalist, Ben Duerr has been making waves in his own right as one of the new go-to voices of deathcore; having done many guest spots and fronting his other band Hollow Prophet. I got a chance to speak with Ben after his set, to learn more about Shadow of Intent, and himself as a rising unique vocalist in the ever-changing world of deathcore.
GA: First off, Shadow of Intent just started doing major tours, a few months ago; how has the Chaos and Carnage tour been for the band?
BD: It has been a great first tour so far. The reactions have been great. We have won over a lot of new fans, and I think we have established ourselves as a touring band, rather than an internet project.
GA: Shadow of Intent has a huge underground following, what is it like to see the crowd’s reactions to your music being played live for the first time?
BD: It has been great honestly. It is almost as if you couldn’t tell that this was our first time on the road. People have been really excited, there has been a lot of crowd participation. The crowd’s have been going nuts.
GA: The band after this tour is set to go out on a full US tour with The Black Dahlia Murder, Whitechapel, Fleshgod Apocalypse, and Aversions Crown? Can you tell me more about how you came to be a part of this tour, and what are you anticipating about being on the road with such legendary bands?
BD: We were given an offer through our agent, Circle Talent Agency, which is kind of a new thing for us. I am stoked to tour with these bands. The Black Dahlia Murder and Whitechapel have been two bands who have shaped who I am as a musician. Aversions Crown are good friends with the band, and I am very excited to see Fleshgod Apocalypse as well.
GA: Shadow of Intent released a single recently ‘Underneath a Sullen Moon’, is this to be a stand-alone single or is this the basis of a future album to come?
BD: As of right now it is kind of tough to say, but I think it will be on the next album.
GA: Can you tell me a little more about the theme behind the song?
BD: I have been writing a story of my own, rather than sticking to the Halo lore which was on the past two albums. I have been writing this rather dark and melancholic story. It is chapter based about this character. ‘Underneath a Sullen Moon’ deals with his suicide after losing everything that he has loved in his life, and at the end will lead to his passage into the afterlife; which will lead to the second half of the story where he is alive in the beyond.
GA: I am a big fan of bands that have concepts behind their music. One of those bands being Ovid’s Withering, with their songs talking about all types of lore.
BD: Ovid’s Withering was a huge influence on the band when we first started. When our first cd came out, we were jamming a lot of Ovid’s Withering.
GA: What is your writing process like when developing new material?
BD: Chris (Wiseman) usually is at home and puts on Logic and just writes away. He will send me a demo a couple days later, and that will be kind of the template of the new song. From there on, I will write some lyrics and put them over it. Then we will work out the kinks and do any rewrites that we feel necessary. We will keep making new parts and new versions of it, till we feel it is great.
GA: You are known in the underground scene for having a very distinct vocal range and style, do you have any special techniques or drills you use to achieve your style of vocals?
BD: I don’t know necessarily if it’s a technique, I don’t know how to really explain it. I never really thought about it. I tighten my jaw a lot. It is almost like the same technique as if I was to do a low guttural. Slam vocals, gurgle vocals, but instead of closing my mouth, I clench my jaw with my mouth open. That’s just the sound that comes out.
GA: You also do vocals for the band Hollow Prophet, and have done guest work for several bands? To date, what is your favorite non-Shadow of Intent project you were a part of?
BD: Hollow Prophet, I am excited for what is to come. We have a lot of unreleased material that we have been working on, and we have an EP being mixed at the moment.
GA: After The Black Dahlia Murder tour what lies ahead for the band for 2018?
BD: I think we are going to be taking a little bit of a break for writing. Chris has been touring for half the year with his other band Currents. We are going to take a little bit of a breather, and work on writing and try to get the album finished for later this year. With a release sometime early next year.
GA: Where can people keep up to date with Shadow of Intent, and find your merch online?
BD: We have Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/ShadowofIntentCT/), we are trying to use our Instagram (@shadowofintentofficial) more. We also have our merch store which is shadowofintent.bigcartel.com/.
I want to thank Ben for taking time out to speak with me and I wish him well as Shadow of Intent continues to trek across the US. You can catch Ben and Shadow of Intent on the Chaos and Carnage Tour right now, or on the upcoming The Black Dahlia Murder Whitechapel tour starting on June 6th through July 13th . Be sure to check out the band’s latest single ‘Underneath a Sullen Moon’ if you haven’t yet.
Best of luck to you, Ben and your bandmates.