When Chris McEwen, bass player and front man of Adelaide’s favourite thrash band, Hidden Intent, says they’re hell-bent on incorporating their different musical influences onto their forthcoming second album – you’d better believe it. “We’ve actually been working on a cheesy ballad for this one,” he smiles. “Because we’ve become known as a very technical band, people might think ‘Woah, this is a bit weird!’. It’s not quite Steel Panther but it’s got a little bit of them in there that’s for sure – there’s definitely a little bit of cheese.”
This South Australian three-piece have a lot to smile about. Not only are they experimenting with new sounds, they’re currently living it up on tour with metal masters Desecrator, before heading off on a major (and maiden) voyage to Europe.
“We’re definitely trying other things rather than just honing in on our thrash sound. We’re going for a bit of [Boston metal band] Isis, and a bit of Iron Maiden as well,” McEwen adds. “The tracks are starting to get a lot more varied, but we’ll finish them off before we hit the road again with Desecrator.”
Hidden Intent and Melbourne four-piece, Desecrator, are in the middle of a 13-date tour that wraps up in WA next month. “We’re really pumped to be playing with those guys. They’re the biggest name in thrash metal in the country at the moment, so it’s a really exciting time for us.”
Recently the guys inked a deal with one of the premier agencies in the US, Extreme Management Group. “We’ve signed with EMG who are based out of New York, and our manager is Matt ‘Youngy’ Young of King Parrot, which is pretty cool,” McEwen says. “It’s awesome to have someone like him who can steer us in the right direction overseas, but also within our own country. Youngy knows all the right people and he has all these contacts, so we’re just being his little gig monkeys at the moment!”
Less than a week after they call time on their Australian gigs, the tenacious thrash trio will be winging their way halfway around the world to play club shows in the Czech Republic, Austria, Germany and Poland – and they couldn’t be happier. “Not long after we signed with EMG, we were sent an email from a booking company saying they’ve got a European tour slot open, with a band called Lich King,” McEwen explains.
“Apparently they specifically requested a three-piece metal band because their tour van only had three seats left in it! We thought, ‘It’s meant to be’. I mean, if that wasn’t a sign that we were meant to go to Europe then I don’t know what is,” he says, “I think it’s every band’s dream to go to Europe and after five or six years we’re finally able to do it.”
In the meantime, McEwen says they plan to play every show like it’s their last. “We’re just going to make everyone eat shit every gig and just give it our all. We just wanna make every show as energetic as possible and try to be as good as Lich King!”
When & Where: The Loft, Warrnambool – April 26, The Eastern, Ballarat – April 27, The Barwon Club, Geelong – April 28 & Bendigo Hotel, Melbourne – April 29
Written by Natalie Rogers