UK’s rising stars SWARM6IX‘s journey has been nothing short of remarkable, and the release of “LIP$TICK” marks a significant milestone for SWARM6IX as they join the Out Of Line Music family. The band has fused metal and trap with a sprinkling of nu-metal in an intense and engaging futuristic sound.
SWARM6IX provides a safe space for those who have always appeared anti-social, dormant and introverted on the surface. The band acquired their unique identity by combining a love for heavy trap and metal music and standing strongly for the freedom of expression within art. SWARM6IX executes a sound somewhere between Ghostemane and Emmure, yet simultaneously evokes nostalgia and familiarity.
Since I am a die-hard fan of trapmetal (metalcore too, shhhh), I wanted to interview to band to learn more about them. So, here it is!
From the moment I heard ‘Dopamine’, I knew I wanted to know everything about you. And listen to everything from you. And now you’ve just released ‘Lipstick’. So, how did you put this band together?
Ben: Appreciate the love!! Me and Dan (the guitarist) have been in bands on and off for years. We met each other at college and have been best friends ever since. We were in a band with a similar lineup and through covid decided to mix things up and completely change our sound. Thus, swarm6ix was born we took a bunch of demos to G1 studios and haven’t looked back.
Was music always a big part of your life? Can you recall your first musical experience?
For me, yes, music has been a massive part of my life! My mum taught me to sing and my family is big music lovers. I think that’s why my music taste is so diverse I was brought up with a lot of different music. So, I can go from listening to Stevie Wonder to Black Tongue! The first musical experience was a tough one but what sticks out in my mind most is that my parents asked me if I wanted a guitar for my birthday one year and I said yeah not knowing that it would have changed my life completely.
What would you say about your music to someone who has never heard of it before?
I suppose if I was going to explain it to a stranger not knowing what they listen to: Rap metal with clean vocal elements but hard-hitting and some meaningful and at times melancholy lyrics.
When you start designing a new sound, do you already “hear it in your head” or do you just start noodling the knobs and experiment and see what you can come up with? What was it like for ‘Lipstick’?
Our sound to be honest was a bit of a journey. What we had in mind wasn’t the result, it took a lot of work and trial and error to find our end result. But I feel like it’s definitely paid off and it’s sculpted us as a band and as a brand. When we wrote ‘Lipstick’ we already knew what direction we were going in and our sound was apparent. It was just having fun more than anything and experimenting.
How do you get into the headspace to write something? Are you a “writing at 3 a.m.” type of person? Or are you sporadically making notes on your phone that eventually become something amazing?
I’m a firm believer that when you force something it doesn’t come off well and doesn’t seem natural. I’m detrimental to myself to the fact that I’ll write something when I just know I should be writing something but then I’ll listen to it back and just know in myself I could do better. So, no matter what time it is, no matter where I am, if I have an idea I make sure I get that down. I think you just know when something right and your ideas are free-flowing.
Thinking about your evolution, what are some developments in you – whether in your music, your performance, your energy, or the way you work – that you’ve seen real change since your first release?
Honestly, with this stuff, I feel so different. Since the first release. For the first time, I feel like this music is an expression of who I am. It’s been such a learning curve for me as a vocalist to be doing something out of my depth but I’ve loved every minute of it! It’s made me a better vocalist (in my opinion) and it’s really opened me up to the public which I thought would never happen!!
What are the elevator pitches for your music that’ll make people have to listen?
Detuned guitar riffs, hard-hitting rap elements, and some surprising cleans!
How do you know when a track is ready? Does it ever become difficult to either refine ideas or stop perfecting?
The partner/friend test definitely doesn’t hurt. And getting that real feedback certainly helps sometimes. But yeah over touching can be great but it can also be devastating. I think it’s just knowing within yourself. It’s hard to forget you’ve listened to the track 100 times but no one else has heard it yet.
Do you have any specific reference tracks that drive your productions?
Nathan from G1 has had a big impact on that and George Lever, they are our production kings.
There are many descriptions of the ideal state of mind for being creative. What is it like for you? What supports this ideal state of mind and what are distractions? Are there strategies to enter into this state more easily?
Pfft!! Damn!! I mean for me I find it super hard to concentrate at the best of times, but when I’m in that moment nothing can pull me away it’s like I’m lost in the magic! I do write better though when I’m down and in need of something to take my mind away from that.
In how much, do you feel, are creative decisions shaped by cultural differences – and in how much, vice versa, is the perception of sound influenced by cultural differences?
I’ll be honest, I’ve never really found this an issue or even come across it, to me, music is about freedom, and as long as no one is trying to hurt anyone I feel like it shouldn’t matter.
I want to ask you about the bands that have been continuous influences for you, but also about new bands and new records that you think are exciting in the nu-metalcore scene. What do you look at and say “That’s the future of this scene”?
The likes of Circa Survive, Coheed and Cambria, The Contortionist, The Locust, Converge, Dance Gavin Dance, Yes, The Number Twelve Looks Like You!! Have always been up there for me!!
I like to see bands doing well in the scene no matter who they are, but I’m loving ten56 at the moment!!
Guilty pleasure time. What would you say are some of your current most guilty pleasures? All is fair game-food, books, video games, or even cock n’ ball torture, whatever floats your boat. Let us have it.
Love this question, haha! Food-wise, I love anything Asian, sushi is my bag! Video games: I’m playing Fallout 76 at the moment, but love the Fallout games in general! And being pegged don’t think I need to explain why!! Also James our drummer has a huge latex fetish!!
Looking to the future, what’s next for Swarm6ix?
Gigging, writing, and growing!
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