The Animus Project is a newfound crusher of ears. They just released their debut single “Curse of Thorn” over on BeheadingTheTraitor to much critical acclaim. And for good reason! This is a DIY project that brings the heavy from the ground up!
We had the opportunity to catch up with the band directly and see how they function from the inside out. There’s plenty of talent, inspiration, and interesting ideas to go around here as this is a new band fully worth experiencing.
Rumor has it they also have plenty of new music on the way so definitely keep your ears to the Earth for those incoming shockwaves! It should be great.
The track is also available for streaming and purchase on Spotify, iTunes, Amazon, and just about all major online music outlets! If you’d like to follow along with the band more closely and directly see what they’re cooking up next, they’re quite active on social networks. They even recently had a giveaway contest! You can see for yourself over on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. In other news, the band has a great deal on a great looking t-shirt! You can scope it out by CLICKING HERE or clicking on the image of the merch pictured below! The merch is, likewise, available through Bandcamp.
Now, without further adieu, here is the interview!
Were here to speak with the good people behind The Animus Project. First and foremost, how the hell are you doing?
Rob: Absolutely fantastic man! Couldn’t be better. Really excited about this new musical journey we are on! After seeing such positive feedback on our debut single we are super anxious to put out another song!
Bernie: Doing pretty damn good! Looking forward to putting out new music.
As you mentioned, you recently put out your debut single over on BeheadingTheTraitor. How do you feel about the response to “Curse of Thorn” so far?
Rob: To be honest man, relieved (laughs). And I say that because there was a whole lot of anxiety going on. Just because we like the song doesn’t mean everyone else was going to as well. Everybody’s ears are different. So to see so much positive feedback really helped motivate me to wanna work harder everyday to put out more music. I know that no matter how good the music is you will always have people who just don’t feel it and haters who hate it just to hate something. I notice a lot of people really complimenting the chorus in the song, which is funny because there really isn’t a chorus in the song. But there is a part that is organized and structured in a chorus format. That comes from my background of writing other genres of music, but I’m glad everyone liked it!
Bernie: I’m flabbergastedamazed by the response, and just ecstatic! I wasn’t sure how the feedback was gonna be. So much positive feedback! It’s great!
There was an awesome vocal feature from Shadow of Intent’s Ben Duerr on the new single. How did that come about?
Rob: A Ouija Board, some candles, goats blood, and Halo (laughs). No, but seriously, I have been chatting with Ben off and on for a couple years about music and stuff and I had always been a big fan of Shadow. So, once we started putting together The Animus Project and started discussing features there wasn’t a doubt in my mind that he was gonna be the first person I contacted. I had already brought it up to him a few months before any music was even being written. I just had a vision for a song and I felt like he could really add to the feel of what I was going for with Curse Of Thorn. Eventually, I sent him the instrumental, he sent his vocals back, I paid the man and that was that!
There seems to be a horror movie element to your music. Do you have any favorite horror movies in recent history?
Rob: Man, that’s hard because I feel like I haven’t seen a good horror movie in years. The last good horror movie for me was House of 1,000 Corpses. I mean the Saw movies are decent, Hostel is pretty sick, I liked the Texas chainsaw remake, Curse of Chucky was decent. But, to be honest man, I feel like horror movies kinda faded out. Now, I watch shows more than anything. I liked a few seasons of American horror story but I kind of got bored of that too. I did recently just binge watch a show called “The Haunting of Hill House” and that is probably one of the creepiest, scariest, well written form horror entertainment that I have seen in years!
Bernie: I just watch mad Trailer Park Boys. I don’t think there really has been any good horror movies in recent history either. Insidious was alright. Annabelle was decent. That’s about it.
I generally agree. The Haunting of Hill House was great through! What are your plans moving forward with The Animus Project?
Rob: Release another single then, after that, release an E.P. We def have a few more features planned out. Not saying any names though. We want to keep that a surprise. Def do some more crazy lyric videos, maybe a play through video at some point. Basically just get tons of more music out there.
Bernie: Just hitting the lab. Making more music.
Beyond The Animus Project, you do some great production work! Can you tell us a bit about your work at Studio Warrior?
Rob: I feel like there is no short answer to this (laughs). Well, I have been producing and writing music for a long time now. Probably just over 15 years. I have always been into metal and always played guitar, drums, and bass and all that but my main thing for the longest time was hip hop production and a hip- hop group I was in called “Profits Down Below”. It started out as horrorcore and went through many different transitions as I got older. We had many members come and go. We played a few shows even opened up for Tech N9ne once in Cleveland, Ohio. But I was also always involved in other projects as well, doing beats for other local artists around the country. This was in the early 2000’s so I really didn’t have a lot of my work online but here recently, when I started to get back into writing music, I decided to dig up all the hip-hop material and release my entire catalog. I think there is somewhere around 70 songs online now. A lot of it is super old and extra cringey (laughs). Like. just because the recording quality is bad, the beats are bad, and I was young. But there are a few recent albums that I’m pretty proud of that have a lot of speed rap and intricate stuff. The more recent stuff has way better production and recording quality once I finally got the hang of what I was doing. Funny thing is over those 15+ years, even though I was always heavy into to metal music and played guitar and stuff, I never started and finished a metal project of my own. The reason for that was really because every band I ever tried to to make music in just never worked out. Reasons like everybody having different ideas of what kind of music they wanted to make, half of us wanted to work hard and take it serious, half of us didn’t. Or just time constraints and normal life happenings keeping things from progressing. It wasn’t until I finally realized that the only way I was ever going to finish a metal project is if I do it all pretty much myself. I didn’t even know how to do vocals when I started (laughs). I just started practicing everyday and watching mad tutorials. Bernie, on the other hand, has been doing vocals for years, and you can definitely tell! I get better every month, but I’m still not on his level I don’t think. But yeah, so I still release new hip-hop material here and there under the name “Profits Down Below” even though its just pretty much me. I kept the name because I have a small little following here in my home town and surrounding areas. But, right now, I’m completely focused on The Animus Project and its gonna be that way for a while. There is a rap metal remix me and Bernie did to one of my old rap songs which was kind of the transitioning song from Profits Down Below to The Animus Project. It’s called “Hata Fade Away”. There is a simple lyric video and all our other material is available on all the major platforms as well if anyone really wants to check it out. Although I wouldn’t recommend 90% of it. It’s just old and not relevant to what we are doing today.
How did you first get involved in production?
Rob: I have always been interested in production, even before I had the tools to do it. I remember being 8 or 9 years old listening to songs wondering what was making the sounds I was hearing. Why did they play instruments this way or that way? what are these layers of sounds in the background and why are they so important? In my early teen years I was into both gangster rap and metal. I listened to Pantera, Marilyn Manson, Korn but also 2Pac, Bone Thugs N harmony, Nas, Outkast and all that. I always loved to pick music apart and try to figure out what made the songs so special. Eventually, I got my first guitar, then a 4 track recorder, a crappy keyboard, then finally some software. And over the years I have just kept upgrading and upgrading and buying more stuff. I mostly learned everything on my own. One thing people find interesting when I tell them is I literally had the first version of Fruity Loops (laughs). And they are on like the 20th version now or something. That’s how old and ancient I am (laughs). But yeah, so I also recently went to Full Sail for a little while and got my certificate. Decided not to go for the full degree because I really wasn’t learning much more than I already knew. Full Sail helped motivate me and showed me how to get more organized and kind of helped put some of the business part of the music industry into perspective more than anything.
Bernie, are there any other musical projects you’re involved in right now?
Bernie: Actually, yes I am. I started a metal band with one of my childhood best friends, doing vocals. It’s a full band full line up. Getting ready to do our first show with Traitors This Thursday, November 1, 2018 at 6 PM @ the foundry concert club in Lakewood Ohio.
Nice! What are some of your biggest influences in terms of music in general?
Rob: Oh my god. Way too many to name. I listen to literally every genre of music except SKA. I fucking hate Ska (laughs). I appreciate it for what it is. I mean I listen to classical music too. I just cant stand the sound of brass instruments over guitars or something. But yeah, so If I was to narrow it down I would say After The Burial, Shadow Of Intent, Slaughter To Prevail, Rings Of Saturn, Veil Of Maya, Marilyn Manson, Korn, Coal Chamber, Slipknot, Lots of rappers and singers. Eminem, Bone Thugs N harmony, Twista, Tech N9ne, Esham, Brotha Lynch, 2Pac.
Bernie: Long time friend and artist Dylan Ross inspired me to want to make music. Waking the Cadaver, Job for a Cowboy. When I was 12 is when I started doing vocals and I would do those band’s songs.
Any plans for The Aniumus Project live shows in the future?
Bernie: Hopefully someday.
Rob: If it becomes an option, absolutely.
If you had to attempt to survive in a horror movie, which would you choose?
Bernie: Child’s play. Fuck chuckles. I’ll destroy that little mother fucker.
Rob: I wouldn’t survive any horror movie because I would be the killer, and the killer always dies. But they also always come back so I guess I would never die either (laughs). Seriously though, I guess Leprechaun, cause he’s just a little bitch ass leprechaun.
If The Animus Project was a sports team, what would your mascot be and what colors would your uniforms be?
Bernie- The colors would be Black, Orange, and Green and our mascot would be Alex Terrible.
Rob: Black and the mascot would be a dude dressed up as a chainsaw cause chainsaws are sick.
Perfect! That’s all we have. Any last words for the people out there?
Bernie and Rob: Yes, actually! First off, I wanna add that we had Curse Of Thorn added to an algorithmic Spotify Playlist which means it’s doing great and also means if it does really great it could send up in an editorial playlist which is basically like getting the willy wonky golden ticket. So everyone please go jam our song on Spotify! Jam it til your ears bleed!
Also, I want to take time to think Mark Cooper from Mind Rape Art for the super sick logo, Genocide Artwork for the cover art for Curse Of Thorn, Alex Sedin from Ghostalgy for bringing our song to life with his mixing and mastering magic, Ben Duerr for being a beast like always and helping us get this song out there! Thank you to all our fans, friends, and family and most importantly we wanna thank The Circle Pit for giving us this opportunity! You guys rock!