Earlier this year, our Lisa caught up with Fearless Vampire Killers main man Kier Kemp. Read on for an interview covering everything from Takedown Festival to Tom Cruise!
It’s Lisa from Rock Sins and I’m with Kier from Fearless Vampire Killers. How are you Kier?
I’m okay thank you, how are you?
I’m very well, thank you. You toured with In This Moment earlier in the year, how did that go?
It was good, and it was interesting. It was cool. We got to go to loads of new places. It was our first time in Europe, which was really nice. It was nice of them to take us out to all those new places and spread our wings, as it were. We got to visit places like Milan, which I’ve wanted to go for ages.
They have an interesting fan base. I think people thought it was matched better than it was, because people were definitely there for a lot for the women than they were me. You know what I mean.
That said, I think they responded well to the technical things, because they like their metal. We chucked in a few riffs and it went down well, it was a whole lot of fun.
So how did you go down in Europe, what did they make of the music?
It depends what country, to be honest. Like I think we’re quite excitable guys so places like Brittany and France they were quite receptive, they were well up for it. We didn’t get a bad reception at all from anywhere but I just think that certain places that didn’t quite get it. The Germans are quite quietly respectful. They’re just taking it in and then you’ll have people come up and compliment me on some of the more technical aspects of music, which is cool.
Yes it was definitely an enjoyable experience. Italy and France I would say were definitely more FVK eccentric.
And you are about to do a headline tour?
Yes. It’s a big old tour, that’s the first thing, for England. We did like 16 shows in England. It was rescheduled from earlier in the year because we got some opportunities come up so that was really cool. Well not cool for the fans, we apologise profusely but everyone’s been really cool about it.
It’s already sold a bunch of tickets, which is always a lovely positon to be in. We’ve got some great support bands, in the form of Annisokay, which are like a German band. That’s really cool. We’ve got ZOAX playing. I’m really interested it that band, they’re really good, they’ve got a great brand of metal going on and we’ve got a band called Myth City which are very new but they’re really interesting. They’re kind of like rap metally sort of thing.
Did you hand pick all the supports?
Yes pretty much……it was like we had some suggestions come through from like our agent but very much they all came to me and us, and I ended up pretty much picking the bands that are on the line up so it’s all good.
Cool so let’s talk Takedown, because that’s where we are, and you guys have got a stage, your own stage, how does that come about?
We got asked, which was cool. We weren’t going to play Takedown this year because the headline tour was supposed to be at around the same time, but when the tour got rescheduled they re-approached us and were just like, “Do you want to have a stage?”, and we were like, “Fuck yes, do we want to have a stage”, it’s a perfect opportunity for us to just book some great bands to play and we did.
We got Allusondrugs. We got Dead, Fort Hope, Miss Vincent, Ugly Love, Ashestoangels, loads of great bands, it’s all good, so that was a good opportunity for us to showcase some great fucking bands and I am pumped. It’s a really hot sweaty little room and it’s going to be a fucking nightmare but it’s going to be great.
And you’re going to be all suited and booted and getting nice and sweaty?
Yes, exactly, I’m going to ruin my jacket.
Ruin your make-up. Everything is just going to be a mess.
Yes I know. But in a very good way.
So what else have you guys got going on?
Have we talked about Download?
No we haven’t, that’s a good one to talk about.
Yes, we’re playing the second stage of Download this year which is a fucking massive thing for us, we’re really, really pleased with that. We weren’t expecting that at all, we thought we’d be playing the third like lower down than that, it was awesome.
So we have the headline tour, there’s loads of other little festivals that are coming through for the summer and there’s going to be more music coming. We were thinking of definitely releasing another EP early to mid-summer.
You released your ‘Unbreakable Hearts’ album quite recently, how did that go down?
Really well actually.
I know there was a bit of hesitation from your side and then a bit of a delay?
There was a delay because we had a load of bollocks with management at the end of 2013 and they basically advised us not to release the album, they were like, “You shouldn’t do it”. No labels wanted to put it out, basically, they were like, “Okay we don’t want to put it out”, so we were like, “Okay fine”, because it was just ambitious. It was 16 tracks, just like really ecliptic, had loads of stuff on there and I think they were kind of just a bit overwhelmed and a bit scared, they were just like, “I don’t know what we can do with this”.
So that whole thing went wrong anyway, it was really bad, they were just not very good for us so we parted ways with them and then after that we met our current manager, who’s absolutely fantastic and she was like, “Why the fuck didn’t you release that album? Let’s get it out”, you know get the ball rolling again and we did and it was like, it’s been a massive success. It sold as many units in two months as our first album did in two years. People were like, other than one particular review from Rock Sound magazine, which was a bit shit, all the rest of them have been absolutely fantastic, been really well received. So I’m quite proud of that.
Yes you should be. And then another EP already with more tracks coming?
Yes. Yes. Yes. Basically we’ve already written loads of stuff for our third album and we’d recorded some demos but they were studio quality so we were like fuck it, let’s put it out. Give people a taste of what’s to come. Get them prepared.
I last spoke to you at Download last year when you were absolutely pished.
Sounds about right.
Sounds about right.
And we had a discussion about vampires and I ended up having a big row with Laurence about who is the best Lestat.
You couldn’t give me a concise answer, so tell me…do you think Tom Cruise is the right Lestat?
Oh yes he’s fucking brilliant.
See this is what Laurence and I had the row about.
Do you think there’s a better one?
I don’t think any of them have been right so far.
Yes. I think you’d be a good Lestat actually.
Are you a fan of, there is a book isn’t there?
There’s lots of books in the series, Anne Rice wrote them.
There’s a new one just out this year.
Hs is, he’s one of my favourite vampires that’s been depicted in films though. I like Tom Cruise’s version, so I’m quite biased, I think he’s really good.
Lestat in Queen of the Damned is a frontman in a band so I think you could really be Lestat and this is a whole secret guise that you’ve got going on.
I could do that, in fact I think I’ll try it some time.
I think we should suggest this and then we’ll get Anne Rice listening and be like, “Yes you know what you need to get behind this band”.
Yes absolutely that would be good. Well if you’re listing Anne I’m up for it.
Thank you very much
You can follow Kier on Twitter at @KierFVK and the rest of Fearless Vampire Killers at @fvkillers. Fearless Vampire Killers recently released a brand new music video for the track Danger which you can enjoy below:
Interview by Lisa Fox