Abreact goes in-depth and breaks down a few of their tracks ahead of their forthcoming album release, Deceivers Are Coming.
Abreact Band members Josh Cahill (vocals), and Lee Chatterton (guitars/vox), Victoria’s very own hardcore four-piece, share a few insights on the latest single Honesty and a few other ferocious headbangers from their Deceivers Are Coming album which is slated for release next Friday, September 16.
From social issues to the myriad of emotions that make up the human experience, Deceivers are Coming explores the bridge between the social and personal landscape, and with it, delivers an empowering message to know that it’s okay to feel it all.
Trust In Decay (Part I)
Josh: Lyrically sets the tone of the album, with a solid it’s not weak to speak up message. Coming from the perspective of someone who is struggling to deal with their thoughts and emotions in everyday life and finally coming to the realization that it is ok to voice their struggles and seek out help.
Lee: Hard agree. I had the intro riff kicking around for a while. I was really digging the kind of ominous mournful vibe that it had, which was something I really felt was cool with from ‘For Those…. (Dead On The Way)’ from our first album ‘Entities’ Whilst they are not similar there is an overall vibe/tone that they strike. Chris’ bass line just sprinkled that magic on top and it seemed like a perfect way to build up and lead into the rest of the album.
Trust In Decay (Part II)
Josh: The hard-hitting opening set this up perfectly to help convey the heavy impact which comes with the overwhelming anxiety experienced when taking the first step in hope of a positive change. Lyrically this is a continuation thematically of Part I, Part II comes from the perspective of someone who has been through the phases touched on in Part I and is now seeking further assistance. Over medicated and forgotten inside a crumbling health system, trying to seek further assistance and feeling like they are getting nowhere.
Lee: I had the first riff of this song kicking around for a little while, it was really fun to play and sounded pretty crushing. The rest of the song changed multiple times, even right up to when we were recording guitars in the studio for the album. I always loved the track, but it took right to the end to get it in our sweet spot. Plenty of energy and grit, large chorus, large breakdown and we can’t wait to play it live.
Lee: The opening riff idea had been kicking around for a while, you can actually hear it in the background of one of our vlogs from when we went to Vancouver to record The Warehouse Sessions. The rest of the song is completely different now, however. It went through many changes; mainly chorus ideas I kept changing out before settling on the behemoth you hear today. It’s a fun song to play with good energy and will translate live really well.
Josh: We like to try and leave things open for our listener’s interpretation, however, we would be lying if it were suggested that the song did not cover the broader spectrum of seclusion from others or self-doubt/questionable self-worth resulting from these experiences. It touches on anxiety and paranoia to some degree and deals with the effects caused by these things. It is important to believe in yourself. It is important to empower yourself to try and deal with these anxieties. You can overcome, turn the tables and flip the script. Listen here.
Josh: Black Wings speaks from two points of view. Someone trying to help someone feeling down and the person feeling down themselves, almost in a counselor-to-patient type scenario and vice versa. Support is offered and reinforced but the patient cannot help but feel this heaviness weighing them down. They feel like this helpful advice is some kind of trick or disingenuous, but the message remains the same. There is always a way forward and with support, you can fight depression.
Lee: This song had its embryonic stages when we’re working on Waves and Occupy although at that time I never really got comfortable with it. It went through a number of variations. I really wanted that juxtaposition of the heavy opening riff with an airier verse, but just had a challenging time finding the right tones and transitions. I knew the song was in there, I just had to find it. Really happy with how it came out, especially Hugh’s (a little-known local legend) lovely additional instrumentation. Really brings out the drama in the verses and the crescendo with the subtlety added piano and cello.
Lee: Waves is a belter and super fun to play, no intro, no bs, just straight out of the gate to clobber you over the head. It’s got great energy and the breakdown style change up where we bend the guitar necks always generates a few looks. We first recorded this song in Vancouver a few years ago and whilst we loved it, we thought we could just do a better job of it with more time to consider all the aspects. The original had a rawness you could love, but there was a little polish we thought we could bring this time around. That Canada trip was an absolute whirlwind, we only found out three weeks before, so it was very hard to be super prepared. That is why tackled it again. Super cool to have our singer from back then Mat guest on this version. I think this is the ultimate version. Lyrically Waves is about dealing with those darker thoughts that can dictate your life from time to time. Depression was a constant battle for people in our lives growing up. This song is an expression of those times. Every time we play it, it reminds us of how far we and the people in our circle have come.
Lee: This is another track we recorded in Vancouver, although in this version one of the riffs and drum part for it has had a significant change. This is a little different for us also it fades in with a looped lead with actually gets used several times in the song. Being a band with one guitarist I don’t often try that kind of thing too much as it is hard to replicate live. However, I did it for this song, and works great.
It has a nice bigger drawn-out stop start intro that opens up into some faster verse passages and an impassioned chorus. I also ended the track differently from how I normally would, repeating the opening intro passage which then fades off into feedback. Interesting side note, one side of the guitar feedback on the outro part was recorded in Vancouver (we just loved how it flows and blooms out) the other side of the guitar feedback was recorded in Melbourne.
Lyrically this is another emotionally charged song. Feeling trapped, attempting to break out. Almost like a war within yourself where moving forward and opening up to the “sympathetic ears” never goes to plan. Like you are destined to fail from the start, despite your best intentions.
Josh: Paper Planes talks about the darker side of working your way through your problems. Questioning individuality and pushing the point that everybody is different in some way or another. Of course, this is not easy and is made even more difficult when you are surrounded by those who wish to see you fail and are attempting to hide the truth. You won’t be the easy target they desire, however.
Lee: Paper Planes was the first track we finished for the album, just as the pandemic was starting to get rolling. We explored this one first as we knew had it the potential to be a single for us, that covered most elements that we enjoy about what we do. Groove, heavy chugging, gang vocals, restrained parts, and an opened-up chorus with a heavy ending, it’s all there.
There was a good message in the lyrics. It turned out to be the only song finished when the heavy lockdowns began, we waited for a while for some reprieve, however, the studio was always in stage 4 areas.
We just released it as a single as soon as it was finished (Beau McKee from Studio Delos could mix and master at his home) because to be honest at the time, we didn’t know if we would get back to the studio given the state of some parts of the world. Turned out great though, very nice introduction to our new lineup and what we do.
The Hate Resistance
Lee: The main riff in this song, the verse riff, is heavily inspired by one of my all-time favourite bands Converge and their song Plagues off their ‘No Heroes’ album. That gnarly chugging octave guitar sound is so heavy, I fell in love with it in an instant. It gave me a chance to do things a little differently to how I normally would and get out of my comfort zone a little sound-wise, playing much slower and purposefully than I normally would.
Josh: After finding our feet a little in Paper Planes, we take a backward step and plunge back into self-doubt territory. Everything is doom and gloom as we sink into the depressive side of an emotionally negative relapse where we feel everything, and everyone is against us. The only positive progression comes at the very end of the song where we come to the realization that this is where the buck stops. We must resist this internal hate in order to resume moving forward.
Josh: This song is about rebuilding after reaching rock bottom. It’s time to get this all off your chest and move forward, no matter how daunting this all seems. Face the fears, and overcome all obstacles. Getting back in touch with your emotions and feelings to use them in a positive manner which enables you to start rebuilding trust in yourself and others. It’s not going to be easy, and self-doubt is still prevalent, but there is help available, utilize these resources. Take inspiration from yourself, you’re still here, you’re still standing.
Lee: Now is more of a straight up one. It started reasonably early around the same time as ‘Waves’ and ‘Occupy’ and never really changed much, it worked well as it was. Just minor fine-tuning here and there.
We actually did an early live demo of it in Vancouver. Another one with good energy. We recorded three additional songs for the album, which ‘Now’ was up against to be included, this was just a better fit than the other three. No mess, no fuss, just straight in and out.
Josh: Deceivers talks about no matter what happens in your journey, never give up. There will always be detractors, liars and people willing to deceive you at every turn. This is also a very broad commentary on society’s willingness to sabotage anyone and anything at any time. The 24-hour news cycle feeds a lot of hatred, and they often have their own agenda to serve rather than the truth. The message here is simple, fight the powers that continue to oppress, try to see through the lies, and seek the truth. They want us divided, but we need to stick together in order to make positive meaningful change in our lives and for future generations.
Lee: This song was the last one written before we started recording the album if I remember correctly. The opening mosh riff I was really keen to work into something as I had it in my back pocket for a while.
In the middle of the track, we transition to a more spacial and clean part before it opens up again into an emotive lead and frenetic big ending. I wanted a track that had a closer vibe and I think we achieved that.
Hugh comes in again in the peeled-back middle part and ends with his cello, really helping us to lean on the emotional quality of the melodic aspect of those sections.
I had a vision for this album fairly early on, even before Josh joined, and all the tracks were written. I knew Trust In Decay Part I would be the opener as it just had that intro track vibe, so the ending of this track is kind of related to the ending of that one although with a reasonable variation.
It’s almost like a full circle moment, you’ve come back around but experienced many things in-between. With this full circle vibe to the track we had our original singer Simon guest on it and our original drummer Tim is also on the gang vocals on this one.
It just felt right to bring it all home together, like a big extended family. Felt very special to do this and we are very grateful that they wanted to contribute. With that album ends as it starts except that feedback fades out rather than in.
Overall I think we have shown we have learned a few things since our previous releases without sounding very different or changing our identity too much at all. It’s the same thing we love and enjoy just with some extra spice.
We are really proud of what we have managed to create, especially considering the massive delays faced with COVID and the space in between some of the sessions. Beau has done a fantastic job recording and producing.
He pushed us and helped us get to where we needed to. We think it’s our best work so far and we really hope people enjoy it as much as we do. We can’t wait to play these tracks live!
Stoked to announce our new album 'Deceivers Are Coming' will be released Friday September 16th!
— ABREACT (@ABREACT_hc) August 19, 2022