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THE METAL OBSERVER - Interview - K-OCTAVE - February 2002

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K-Octave - The modern old school - February 2002

With their debut "Outer Limits" American K-OCTAVE have handed out an Old-School-US-Metal-album that plainly floored our Ralf. So there was no way around him shooting out a volley of questions towards unsuspecting Shawn Pelata, singer of the band. Here is the result...

Hi, this is Ralf from "The Metal Observer"-webzine. How are you doing?

Hey Ralf! I am doing fine, thanks for asking. I hope you are as well.

Please introduce K-OCTAVE to our readers. I don't think that you are pretty much known here!

Well, K-OCTAVE is a new Melodic Metal-band based out of North Carolina, USA. Our debut album "Outer Limits" just came out via Hellion Records. The band is made up of Brian "Hellstorm" Williams on lead guitar, Tom Berry on drums, Jason Tedder on rhythm and acoustic guitars, Cliff Paul on bass and myself, Shawn Pelata, on vocals.

I read in a fanzine that K-OCTAVE is only a side project of Brian Williams not a real band?

Well, we're about as "real" as you can get. We write songs, play shows, and have made one record with plans on making more records. It began as a side project for Brian, and I suppose it still is. OCTOBER 31 is his main priority but, take it from me, Brian gives a lot of time to K-OCTAVE. He loves both bands equally, and that comes from his own mouth.

There are some rumours in the internet that you are no more in the band, is this correct?

This is not correct. I am the only singer K-OCTAVE has ever had. I wrote all of the lyrics on the album and am still the main lyricist as well. I am very much a part of the band. When the record was released, I was on personal hiatus from the band and therefore not in the liner note photos. We took some more pictures with me in them for the-CD booklet, but they were not done in time to make it in before release.

Your style reminds me a lot on the glorious eighties. Do you see yourself as a old-school-act or a modern Metal-act?

I see us as a modern Metal-act with old-school-roots. We don't want to simply copy and re-play our influences. We want to take all the different bands and artists that have influenced us and build upon them. We try and combine an "old-school"-Metal-feel with big riffs and a good amount of aggression with strong melodies and tight grooves.

What are your main influences?

Speaking for myself, I would say Geoff Tate of QUEENSRYCHE is the main reason I wanted to become a singer. Other singers I love and draw inspiration from include Ronnie James Dio, Ray Alder, Steve Perry, Rob Halford, Steve Walsh, James LaBrie, Bruce Dickinson, Doug Pinnick, Carl Albert (RIP), and many others. Two more recent favorites of mine are Russell Allen and Jorn Lande.
Both of those guys are amazing! The other guys in the band are all over the place! Cliff is big into YES and old GENESIS as well as DEATH (R.I.P. Chuck) and DREAM THEATER. Tom is a huge CLUTCH-fan. Jason is a fan of bands ranging from PRIMAL FEAR to SALIVA. Brian has us all beat, though. He's an old-school-Metalhead through and through. Brian loves old SLAYER, BLACK SABBATH, WARLORD, LIZZY BORDEN, TONS of others and is a huge ANGEL DUST-fan.

What can you tell me about your lyrics?

Well, let's see, I write all the lyrics. Some lyrics that we used on the record were a few years old. They were mainly just made up stories and fictional scenarios about different things. On the next album, I plan on injecting more personal, human topics as well as a few more fictional things. The lyrics on the next album will also be almost all new. Not too many old songs I had sitting in my notebook like on "Outer Limits".

How did it come to the deal with Hellion?

When Brian played Wacken with October 31 in 2000, he handed out many, many copies of our music to many, many different people. One of those people was Jürgen, head of Hellion Records. He liked it and wanted to put it out for us. The rest is history.

Do you think they are the right label for you? I mean people can buy your album only per mailorder and not in stores...

I think Hellion was and is the right label for us right now. They have done a great job so far getting "Outer Limits" in the press for reviews, etc. You're right, it is mostly mail-order, but I have seen posts on several Metal-message-boards from people in different parts of the world who have bought the CD and love it. So, yeah, I think Hellion came along at the right time for us and who knows what the future holds?

What about live gigs? Did you often play live with K-OCTAVE?

Devil Saint Booking just started booking shows for us. We plan on playing out at least 2 times a month. We are also scheduled to play Classic Metal Fest 2002 in Ohio, USA in the summer. We'll be sharing the stage with acts like DECEASED, PENANCE, OCTOBER 31, SKULLVIEW, GRAVE DIGGER, PREMONITION and many more so we're pretty excited about that!

Who had the idea to name the band K-OCTAVE? And what does it mean?

I came up with the name about the same time we were recording. The original spelling was CHAOCTAVE. It was a combination of the words "chaos" and "octave". It was decided that "CHAOCTAVE" would be a little too hard to say, so it was shortened to K-OCTAVE. Now, there is no confusion.

I think the "Outer Limits" album is very short. Why?

Well, at 38 minutes I'd say it is a decent length. Remember, back in the day a lot of albums were between 35 and 45 minutes. "Reign In Blood" is only 35 minutes. I think "quality" is more important than "quantity". That being said, we are planning on having 10 or 11 songs on the next album. But that was the plan from the beginning.

What is coming up next? Do you have any new songs?

Well, just trying to play some shows and just be a band. We plan on being back in the studio in Summer 2002 to record the second album. We have several songs written and we are totally excited about them. We are writing and arranging the songs all together. This will also be our first album with a permanent bass-player. Cliff is adding a whole new dimension and layer to our sound and we love it! Expect a diverse album with lots of melody, groove and punch!

Imagine a fairy would give you three wishes! What would they be?

Three wishes? Hhmmm…
#1 - I wish to be financially independent.
#2 - I wish I owned my own recording studio.
#3 - I wish that my son grows up to be a better person than I am.

Which CDs are at the moment in your player?

I bring CD's to work everyday. Today I have DIO - "Magica", DEF LEPPARD - "High 'n' Dry", CONCEPTION - "In Your Multitude" (Hah, the man has a good taste! - Alex), HALFORD - "Resurrection", ARMORED SAINT - "Revelation", CRIMSON GLORY - "Transcendence" and LION'S SHARE - "s/t".

Last Words?

Many thanks to you Ralf and "The Metal Observer" for all your support! Big thanks to Hellion Records! Thanks a million times to all those who have bought the CD and who support the band. The response so far to K-OCTAVE has been very encouraging and we totally appreciate all the kind words from people. Thanks to everyone.


2001: Outer Limits (CD, Hellion)

Ralf Henn

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