Friday 29 March 2024

ANCIIENTS Interview - The Electric Highway Festival Interview Special - An Interview With Kenny Cook With Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metallers ANCIIENTS

Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metallers ANCIIENTS are making their return to the Heavy Metal World with a headlining slot of this year's THE ELECTRIC HIGHWAY Festival on Saturday April 06th 2024 in Calgary, Alberta.

The band have been away from the scene for quite some time and I'm really pleased their coming back in a big way as I'm a huge fan of their 2016 album Voice Of The Void which has become an undeniable classic since it's initial release.

I caught up with Kenny Cook (Vocals/Guitar) from the band this cool interview where he provides details about ANCIIENTS festival appearance and speculating on rumours about a new full length record. 

Read on for a great interview.

Hi Kenny. Thanks for doing the interview. How are things with you today?

We are doing very well!

I know you're currently busy preparing with Sasquatch for the forthcoming The Electric Highway Festival happening April 4th to April 6th and with you guys performing headlining slot on Saturday night. How are the preparations currently going?

Rehearsals have been going amazing, we are living in different cities these days so it’s always a good time when we can get together in the same room and unleash some pent up energy.

What can people in attendance expect from Anciients for this festival performance?

For one, they can expect a new line up. Since the last time we played in Calgary, we’ve acquired a new bassist. Everyone in the band is now firing on all cylinders and we are quite excited to get back to playing our music live, after quite a lengthy hiatus. We’ve got a special set of songs picked out, one of which we’ve never performed live before.

What type of set will you be performing though I presume it will be focusing upon your excellent previous albums. Will you be performing or trying out new material for this festival slot.

We’ve chose a killer set of songs which I think will gel well with the overall vibe of the festival. Hard and heavy as well as dynamic and sonically pleasing. Most of the material will consist of songs from ‘Heart of Oak’ and ‘Voice of the void’, Although, we do have a few new songs also included! We are excited to see how they go over with the in attendance.

Will you be doing any more gigs before the festival happens and if so where will you be performing at?

We’ve got one warm up show happening on April 5th at the Starlite Room in Edmonton.

What bands are you looking forward to see performing live at The Electric Highway Festival?

There are a ton of killer bands on the bill. I’m really excited to check out Empress. They are an awesome band from Vancouver. I’m always ready to see Dead Quiet melt some faces as well. There is a handful of performers I have yet to see or hear so it will be great to check out some new music.

Anciients released their last album Voice Of The Void way back in 2016. The album was critically acclaimed across the board. Did it surprise you the response that it received and how it's still highly regarded to this day. Did you know you had something special when you released that album.

We don’t ever go into the writing room expecting any certain type of reaction to the music. For me personally, anyways, I can’t write thinking about whether or not the material being written will sound good, or bad, to the ears of the masses. I just try to make sure that we as a group, are satisfied with the songs we create. If the material gets us stoked, and we enjoy performing it, that’s all that really matters. With Voice of the Void, I felt like we had a decent collection of songs, but we didn’t have and major expectations, the music will always feel special to us after putting so much time and effort into putting the album together, but it’s hard to think it will be special to anyone other than us.

We were certainly surprised when the album won the Juno award! That was something you could never expect, especially with so much talent spread out across the country. It does feel quite rewarding when people also enjoy the music you create. We really do appreciate all of the fans that have shown interest in our band.

I've heard rumblings of a new album being released in 2024. Can you confirm this or is everything still top secret for the time being. If you can provide details when is the album being released.

I can definitely say the rumblings are true! Though I can give too much information about it yet, I can confirm the album is fully complete and ready for release. Season of mist will be putting it out, and it should start seeing the light of day within the next couple of months.

What has been the high points and low points performing with the band?

We have had many high points as a band. Whether it be getting to tour with the like of Death to all, Lamb of god and travel the world. Receiving accolades such as the Juno Award were also very nice.

Health issues with family taking a front seat for a while, caused us to take a step back after Voice of the Void was released, coupled with the COVID years, it seemed like we were out of the game for quite a while. If there were any low points for the band, I think that period of time, with not much activity, would be front and centre.

Do you have any other musical projects that folks can check out or any exciting releases coming in the future?

A couple of the guys have other projects they’re involved with. Our guitarist Brock, also plays with Dead Quiet, who are also performing at festival. Our new Bassist Rory, plays n another project called Ritual Dictates. They are both great bands and worth checking out.

How did you get involved with music? Was it a particular album, group or artist that made you want to write and play your own music?

My household growing up always had music playing loudly. My father, although not a musician, has always been very enthusiastic about music and a lot of variety of genres. I believe that must’ve played a huge part in the desire to learn how to make music.

It was bands like Nirvana and Metallica that really flipped the switch for me to want to learn how to play and instrument. I got a CD player and Nirvana's In Utero from a flea market when I was 11 or 12 and was hooked ever since. Once I got my first I was obsessed with getting better at playing, so I’d spend countless hours hacking away at learning my favourite songs, and trying to learn the craft.


Will you be performing any gigs later in the year?

We’ve got a string of dates lined up surrounding our record release, but nothing that we can announce at this point in time. Eventually we will be covering ground across North America and Europe in support of the new record!

Before you go, do you have any words of wisdom for your fans currently out there?

Nothing other than, Try to spend your life doing something you love and enjoy, make the most of your time as it is a priceless commodity.

Words by Steve Howe and Kenny Cook

Thanks to Asher Media PR for arranging this interview and for Kenny Cook for taking the time out to do this interview.


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