This week we’re featuring the London metal trio Urne in Meet The Band. Covering many genres, their debut full-length album is Serpent & Spirit. Vocalist/bassist Joe Nally and guitarist Angus Neyraafter introduce us to their band.
Chad Bowar: Give us a brief history of Urne.
Joe Nally: Before Urne myself and Angus played in a band called Hang The Bastard. Once HTB packed it in I knew I wanted to keep playing music but needed some time off.
In that time we both wrote some music and managed to get Rich (Harris, drums) to join us. Since then we have recorded one EP and one album.
Describe the songwriting process for Serpent & Spirit.
Angus Neyraafter: The three of us are always sharing riffs and other song ideas that we come up with individually, but we feel we work best writing together in the practice room. This way when we’re jamming a track, you can naturally feel if an idea or structure works or doesn’t. It’s also the most fun way to write.
What will be your strongest memory of the recording of the album?
Joe: I think it was the joy when we finished it. We knew we had something good and we couldn’t wait to show people. Also, me getting stressed at one part I couldn’t nail and almost breaking my hand. (laughs)
Angus: For me it would be recording at Foel Studio with Chris Fielding (Conan) and having Jens Bogren master the album. The studio itself is in a remote location in Wales, so it created an atmosphere when recording. Working with Chris was really great and he completely got what we wanted to do with the album. Jens Bogren has worked on some of our favorite records, so it was a privilege to have him work with us for the albums mastering.
How was the process affected by the pandemic?
Angus: We’re fortunate that a lot of the writing had been done before the UK went into lockdown. We’d have writing sessions via video call for the few sections of songs that needed completing before we went to studio. Now we’re just ready to get back to playing live, pandemic permitting.
How has the band’s sound evolved from The Mountain Of Gold EP?
Joe: I think The Mountain of Gold is fine but that was some stuff I had written for HTB. So once that was out of our system the focus was on what we really wanted to do. Go back to what made us love music, the classic bands and that sound.
What lyrical topics do you cover?
Joe: It’s one of personal struggle and not giving in.
How did you come to sign with Candlelight Records?
Joe: Well, one night I was sitting around and posted a picture of us from the studio. Darren at Candlelight, someone I have known for years dropped me a message asking to hear some. 10 minutes later the ball was rolling.
What are your goals and expectations for the album?
Angus: For me the goal is to grow and continue what Urne is doing for a living, and that hopefully people enjoy what we’ve got to contribute to music.
What has been your most memorable Urne live show?
Joe: We played a festival in Brighton with loads of great bands, when we went on there seemed to be a buzz and from that moment I think things started to change for us. It was fantastic!
When do you plan on resuming shows?
Angus: As soon as the pandemic allows bands to play and travel again!
Joe: We hopefully have shows happening in July. So all fingers crossed for that!
How did you get started in music?
Joe: I had a little band in school. We were rubbish but I guess my first real band was called Chapters and Angus was also in that. We did lots of great tours with bands like Sylosis, Burnt By The Sun, Malefice, etc.
Angus: Same here with school bands, learning the classic songs you would start off with when getting into metal guitar (Puppets, Walk, etc). Then met Nally through friends’ bands and eventually formed Chapters.
Who were your early influences and inspirations?
Joe: I wanted to be Jason Newsted when I was growing up. Still do! (laughs)
Angus: John Petrucci, Kirk Hammett, Paul Gilbert were some of the first players to get me into guitar properly.
What was the first metal concert you attended?
Joe: Slayer in 2000 I think. Great way to start!
Angus: Metallica at Earls Court.. on the St. Anger tour. Still a memorable gig for me.
What’s currently in your heavy musical rotation?
Angus: At the moment I keep revisiting Opeth – Watershed, Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville, and Daughters most recent album.
Joe: At the moment I’m on a Death Angel kick, so mostly them.
Anything else you’d like to mention or promote?
Our second single “The Palace of Devils & Wolves” is out now, listen to it on all streaming platforms as well as watch the music video through Candlelight records YouTube/Vevo page. Some more exciting news coming soon on all the main socials: IG, Facebook, Twitter.
(interview published June 26, 2021)
Watch Urne – “The Palace Of Devils & Wolves” Video