Tucson, Arizona’s Languish is a crushing, bone breaking death metal beast. Earlier this month the group — consisting of Sean Mears – Vocals, Zack Hansen – Drums/Noise, Ryan Bram – Bass, Matt Mutterperl – Guitars — emerged from their lair to put out their bruising third album Feeding The Flames Of Annihilation on Prosthetic Records. I caught up with Zack to learn more.
Thanks for taking the time to answer some questions for Blessed Altar Zine. Your new album Feeding The Flames Of Annihilation makes me want to go outside and destroy things. I’d consider that a success. Your last album Unworthy came out in 2018. Why the four year gap?
Zack: ‘Unworthy’ came out approximately 4 years ago and we didn’t immediately tour off of it, we toured for it in 2019 and did runs with Filth Is Eternal (formerly Fucked and Bound), Creeping Death (they are doing so well now!) and Fuming Mouth and we were writing a little bit throughout that, so that was viewed more as an ‘Unworthy’ year. We finally sat down in December 2019 to really get started and things were going well and I think you know what happened next. The pandemic hit and we took a few months off to stay safe and once we resumed writing we felt with how long the pandemic was taking and the state of the music industry that we could take our time and really refine and hone in the record so we did. We recorded the record in summer 2021 and production and art and life took the rest of the year. Vinyl takes so long to manufacture now you need a good 10 months lead time so we turned everything in January 2022 and we’ve just been waiting ever since. It doesn’t actually feel like it took us that long because we all lost a good 2 years of our lives anyways and we’re stoked on how the record came out.
What was the process of putting together the latest album like? How much did the pandemic change how you usually work?
Zack: We were able to refine and re-write a lot more than we normally would. We got to actually sit, listen to demos, pinpoint sections that felt repetitive or dragged and then go back in a few days later and make it better. With ‘Unworthy’ we didn’t do a whole lot of editing, we were eager to just write new music and get it out there. It was more here’s a song, it’s done, let’s not touch it again. With ‘Feeding The Flames Of Annihilation’ we did the opposite and consciously wrote a superior album (in our eyes) with how much time we had to do it.
The cover of the album seems to be one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. If the four of you were the four horsemen, which would each member be and why?
Zack: This is a good one. I’m gonna say:
Conquest – Matt : Dude literally conquers everything he sets his mind to, becoming an audiologist this year in addition to being the best guitar player I’ve seen.
War – Ryan : Amazing Dungeons and Dragons DM
Famine – Zack: I’m a vegan and my partner says I’m built like a skeleton, she won’t lay on my chest because I stab her with all my bones
Death – Sean: Sean loves his death metal and writing songs about death. Also does Muay Thai training and could kick your ass
There’s an apocalyptic thread running through the album — and the band in general — what’s the main theme of the latest album?
Zack: The main theme of ‘FTFOA’ explores how we as human beings are actively destroying ourselves in a myriad of different ways and directly contributing to our own end, whether that’s through voting against our best interest or being contrarian for contrians sake, ignorance of science, ignorance of social behaviour, just us being sick of it and seeing the worst humanity has to offer and just feeding the flames of our own annihilation.
The first Languish demo was released back in 2014. What’s the origin story of the band and how has the band evolved since that time?
Zack: Matt and I had another band we were doing and our third member moved out of state and would only come back to tour and record and we wanted to do something fast and angry. We brought in Sean and our friend Eric Wagner who plays guitar in Gatecreeper to handle bass and went from there. Eric left to focus on Gatecreeper and Ryan was already familiar with the band so he was the logical choice for bass. Over the years it’s become our main focus and that’s enabled the sound to grow and change from record to record.
What was the first music that made you want to play extreme metal?
Zack: I’m gonna say Shai Hulud – Hearts Once Nourished With Hope And Compassion. That shit changed my life and opened to my eyes up to more extreme music.
Thinking of current bands, what’s most often on the Languish stereo?
Zack: Right now I’m listening to a whole bunch of new albums from Vermin Womb, Innumerable Forms, Phobophilic, Holy Fawn, Ethel Cain, Greet Death, Kali Malone.
One last apocalypse question: the world slips into armageddon, which one of you is going to survive the longest and what’s your plan going to be?
Zack: I’m a gardener and a really good cook so I’m hoping that is somewhat helpful. Matt is married to a nurse so that’s pretty valuable and Sean would be a good body guard.
With the album finished, what are the band’s plans for the coming months?
Zack: Promote the hell out of it. Bribe people to listen to it.
Finally, is there anything else you’d like to mention or promote?
Zack: Our new album Feeding The Flames Of Annihilation is OUT NOW!
Interview by Tom Osman
Band photo courtesy of Pablo Vigueras
Thanks to Zack for his time. As the man himself says, Feeding The Flames Of Annihilation is out now on Prosthetic Records. Buy yourself a copy from the links below and follow Languish on social media to stay up to date with news and events.
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