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Interstellar Probe: An Exclusive Interview With RINGS OF SATURN Guitarist MILES BAKER

By Brian Davis, The Velcro Merkin
Monday, October 2, 2017 @ 11:41 AM

"I wonít say that I enjoy doing speed riffs."

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Every once in a great while a band come along that crash lands on the scene and creates such immediate & sustained impact that it sends massive shockwaves of influence across the globe. RINGS OF SATURN have impacted the scene with such fast ferocity that the business side of the industry has yet to properly grasp their impact. Sandwiched into a 25-ish minute set in the early half of an all-day Metal festival RINGS OF SATURN nevertheless pulled in a packed, rabid crowd of headbangers & possessed moshers for an adrenalized performance that elicited a more rabid fan response than nearly every other band on the bill. The days of seeing this band playing support roles are dwindling, now is your chance to get out to see the impressive impact they are already having on the scene and watch them evolve into elite status. Before much longer weíll be orbiting their headlining performances in unfaltering awe of what could one day be considered the best Technical Death Metal band of all time.

KNAC.COM: I donít even know where to start Ė I just found you guys, Iíve been on a kind of hiatus for nine years and RINGS OF SATURN have by far been the biggest new discovery for me, completely caught me off guard. Iíve been watching you and [guitarist] Lucas [Mann] both on YouTube, thereís kind of a cult phenomenon with watching independent guitarists and playthrough videosÖ

BAKER: Totally, yeah.

KNAC.COM: Is that how you started as far as getting your abilities out there?

BAKER: Oh yeah. I started out touring with a band called >ANIMUS Ė a couple of them are actually here right now, Seth is driving for THE FACELESS on this tour as well. But what kind of launched me into the scene - not saying that Iím reputable or this and that Ė but becoming more known in the online community was from doing that, itís a good way of getting your name out and a lot of people do it on YouTube and Facebook direct uploads. But yeah thatís how I got into it, just doing different guitar videos on songs I do with my bands like INTERLOPER.

KNAC.COM: I was going to say INTERLOPER might be a band that people arenít familiar with.

BAKER: Yeah it kinda got put on the back burner, I launched it like two months before I joined RINGS not knowing I was going to join RINGS, so when I joined it was kinda like ohÖyou know itís a great thing and Iím glad that I joined but for INTERLOPER it was like, ďWell, Iím gonna take a pause.Ē Iím gonna write that record with the guys when I get home after this tour.

KNAC.COM: So is INTERLOPER something you intend to sustain in tandem with RINGS OF SATURN?

BAKER: Yeah I would like to keep them both going that would be really cool, definitely. Itíll be a little more fun to play Ė RINGS is cool itís just very hard.

KNAC.COM: A lot of work, a LOT of work!

BAKER: Yeah (laughs) and I wonít say that I enjoy doing speed riffs.

KNAC.COM: Well I just reviewed the album and I gave it 5/5, I think itís brilliant. What stands out is the amount of work and dedication coming out in the sound of the album, you canít achieve this sound without a conscious, diligent effort to make that kind of a record Ė you canít just ďget luckyĒ and accomplish that.

BAKER: Yeah absolutely. I mean great creativity comes and goes, but yeah a lot of those ideas and the way I like to write Ė a lot of the writing on the record is very meticulous. Of course some ideas come out of nowhere but a lot of it is like a process, more or less; itís not a cookie-cutter thing but thereís all these go-to ideas I picked up in school like different compositional techniques.

KNAC.COM: It kinda reminds me of Trey Azagthoth [MORBID ANGEL] and how he named his solos on ďFormulas Fatal To The FleshĒ, theyíre these elaborate stand-alone pieces and in a sense you take different sections of the music and thereís separate input into that. It seems like there are sections where you built them separately then sculpted them into a bigger structure.

BAKER: Yeah, like I did a video for "Inadequate" for YouTube and itís very much based off the same thing, thatís how I do a lot of my writing. It doesnít always end up working that way but thatís kinda the plan, you know? I start with an idea and use different variations & techniques to make itÖyou know, it makes a song flow really well when you have the same harmonic ideas floating around and there are different pieces in there. Not only using that but just having that in the back of your head will help you craft new ideas based off it like the development of a new idea.

KNAC.COM: So tonight [guitarist] Lucas [Mann] wasnít here but there also wasnít a bass player, and I noticed that historically your bass players are like SPINAL TAPís drummers, the position is never set. Is that just the way itís worked out or is that intentional?

BAKER: The bass is a backtrack, and the way itís written isnít how I preferably write bass but itís something Lucas does Ė he has the bass in unison with the guitar. This is program bass. Program bass honestly sounds better. Itís perfect.

KNAC.COM: Is it normal for you [and guitarist Lucas Mann] to not tour together? Are there other commitments?

BAKER: No, this is the first time that it has happened, and it will continue happening up to a certain point. I canít say when, because I donít know, but as far as whatís behind it - I canít really get into it, but heís fine.

KNAC.COM: Thatís fair enough. One of the things that we noticed in your short set was people want to see more; you have a new killer album out, youíre definitely going to do more American support?

BAKER: Yeah, we do have an American support plan. I canít say what but itís pretty cool.

KNAC.COM: One last thing, youíve got this whole alien aspect thing with lyrics and imagery. Is that an interest you all share?

BAKER: Yeah, we do Ė [singer] Ian [Bearer] writes the lyrics so heíd have a longer answer, but Iím into that whole idea of stuff basically. Iíve had this [points to alien tattoo on arm] since I was 18.

KNAC.COM: But itís definitely a shared interest? BAKER: Yeah, I think so. Itís kind of one of those things that caught on with the band as we came along.

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