The cinematic quotes that begin each track on Redwar’s I Want Your Eyes Pig offer a brief unsettling introduction to the pummeling to come from the thrash songs of this novel new name on the local club scene.
While a new name, Redwar is made up of a group of scene veterans from the hard rock, punk rock, thrash and metal communites that have been making music locally for a couple of decades in various incarnations. Guitarist Scott Biggley (who has made the column as bassist of the internationally acclaimed Haymaker) gathers up his brother Cory 'Red' Biggley (bass) as well as Scott Daley (drums), Mike Gall (guitar), Henry Araouz (vocals) to form Redwar and they’re happy to be part of a growing underground loud rock scene in Hamilton.
“I’ve been in Haymaker for almost twenty years but the guys in this band — we’ve been making music since the early ’90s,” offers Scott Biggley. “There were bands like No Comply and another called Withdrawn — we’ve been doing music for a long time. The five of us have known each other since the ’90s but we’ve never played in the same band together. We were all doing our own thing but the five of us only got together about eighteen months ago and we’ve only done five or six shows in the last year. We all grew up with the same influences — back in the early ’90s we were listening to tons of Sepultura, tons of Helmet and old school shit like that and obviously those bands had a huge influence on us for this band. We want to make it hard, make it fast, make it dirty and most important, we want to make it fun for everyone. Haymaker comes and goes when that band does something I’m there but our last record was over a year ago and I couldn’t tell you what’s happening next with that band. That is what it is but when I’m not doing that, I still love playing music, having some beers and having some fun and that’s what this band is about.
“We’re here to play lots of shows and have lots of fun but it’s a different feel from Haymaker,” adds Biggley. “With Redwar, we still want to make quick and aggressive songs with a little bit of punch and breakdowns where you can punch somebody in the face, throw your beer at your buddy and kick ‘em in the nuts and it’ll be done. Henry’s lyrics — when he has something to say he will but overall we just want to have fun and offer a little bit of danger in there with the sound.”
Self–produced in Biggley’s basement, I Want Your Eyes Pig is solid sonic thrash, performed meticulously and introduced with the ominous movie quote soundbites. Once you get in on the humorous side of things the soundbites can kind of become funny when you realize all the songs on the 6-track EP have quotes from Sylvester Stallone’s 1986 Cobra film.
“I was just being an asshole and I love that movie so much, it’s so awesome, so I added the samples to start each of the tracks,” says Biggley. “With this band, there is something in the lyrics and it’s absolutely aggressive but we want to make sure everything we do is also just about having fun, drinking beer, swearing and fucking shit up. We don’t want old school politically driven hardcore music even with the band name. Cory’s been called Red since we were kids and we ended up calling him Redwar — when we started this band, we’ve all known each other for thirty–five years, we’re like fuck it, we’re going to call the band Redwar but it’s just a name.”
With sixteen new songs being prepared for a potential new full length later this year, Biggley and Redwar have one goal — focusing on the thrill of performing some of the loudest, fastest, heaviest and funnest music.
“When we started this band, it was so fucking easy to call up all of our old buddies to set up shows because there are so many good bands to work with — Hamilton is so fun and easy to play cool hardcore punk shows,” says Biggley. “There are great bands like Sick of Shit, Laid To Rest and lots more. We were excited to hear about these bands from Montreal and Ottawa coming to Hamilton and when we heard their music, we knew we would have a good time playing on this show. We want to be a part of every fucking crazy show and support any band from anywhere — we just want to be a part of it because it’s awesome. The bands we’re playing with should be awesome but we’re going to fucking kill it, that’s what we’re going to do with Redwar.” V
Redwar plays this Sunday February 2 at Doors Taco Joint and Metal Bar with Ottawa's Held In Secret, Montreal's Suicide For A King and Hamilton's experimental, deathcore hip hop outfit Despised Masses. Doors are at 8pm and $10 gets you in. Click on redwar.ca