Bay Area thrashers Chemical Burn released their new album, Raining Anvils, on August 7 via MegaSonic. Producer by Juan Urteaga (Testament, Machine Head, Exodus) at Oaklands JingleTown Studios, the release is packed to the gills with blistering riffs, hammering groove, and all around pulverizing metal. So as to learn more about the meaning behind the recording’s individual songs, bassist and vocalist Mike Garnica was kind enough to afford us this exclusive track-by-track guide of Raining Anvils.
01. “I Rise, I Fly”
Garnica: All the bad things that happen in our lives can make us and, can often, break us. It is the art of surviving such situations and coming out of it bigger than your former self.
02. “My Weakness”
Garnica: With the increasing news of celebrity domestic violence, this topic has been given a voice for the victims that aren’t famous, and scream out to the world that this happens more often away from the spotlight. A weakness to a broken pride is the fuel to the rage that blinds the fury, without logic or reason to succumb to the primitive mentality that leads to tragic solutions— to both men and women.
03. “Crush Your Ego”
Garnica: Lyrics were written about dominating a situation, mentally and physically. When the odds were stacked against, you persevered and it felt good (Shadow Boxing Rocky Style)! The music concept was immediately locked in with a heavy duty, straight-forward, hard chugging groove, but with a swing. So we turned to a proud collection of almost 100 Triplet riffs saved on a drive. We meticulously broke down, rebuilt and narrowed it down to the smoothest swinging, heaviest chunking, fist pumping, sky hammering groove with slick solo!
Check out the song “My Weakness” here.
04. “We Ain’t Done Yet”
Garnica: This song would fit the “Bargaining” stage in the “Five Stages of Grief”. Remembering the good times and being lost in a delusion that there is a way to recapture those vaporized moments. But told in argument, so things get nasty. We wanted to accent the feel with the chainsaw ripping, Harley riding, open road to Vegas guitars and it just wrote itself with musical and vocal accents.
Garnica: A story about a person that made all the wrong decisions and hit rock bottom, and has no one to blame. And then a moment of clarity changes everything when they see the things lost and gone, were the weight keeping them down.
06. “Raining Anvils”
Garnica: Anything in life can metaphorically drop out of the sky, both good and bad situations, to completely and totally change your life. Visually, we all have seen Wiley Coyote as the usual victim, but with real Life changing events, like an anvil falling from the sky, it can get pretty messy!
07. “X’s For Eyes”
Garnica: Taking the visual sense of a cartoon death to make it more fun, but the underlying concept is that after you proceed through the “Acceptance Stage” of the “Five Stages of Grief” to cope with a loss, there becomes a realization that you really never truly let go until the mind stops working or you die, and to be ok with that.
08. “Like A God”
Garnica: Cops are in the news more often for the bad stuff than good lately. Their anger and rage mixed with frustration and fear, and contained in a fragile ego and pride, creates the perfect storm to smash the humanity out of anyone. This is a story told from the perspective of a cop that has been in the deepest underbelly of a hazy world of opportunity over ethics and morals. They grow numb to the laws they are sworn to protect while maintaining the fundamental human rights of innocent until proven guilty. They become jaded from the constant exposure to the hell of society. Their dream “to protect and to serve” and goal to “make a change” that got them into the job is a faded concept to the point of looking at every single person as guilty of something.
Garnica: This is a lyrical journey through the mind experiencing the “Five Stages of Grief,” all wrapped up into a stone grooving, lick swinging crunch. It’s our more dynamic arrangement to help hold and build the story up to a blast of double bass, pitch screaming crescendo and dropped hard into an epic doom driven groove and melodic solo.
10. “I Breathe Smoke”
Garnica: The Chemical Burn band name has drawn a lot of questions asking if there is any reference to the movie Fight Club. And while the answer is no for the name of the band, this song has without a doubt been inspired by the “I felt like destroying something beautiful” scene in the Fight Club; when disgust, anger and rage build and compress into boiling point of nuclear proportions and then unleashing it ALL at once with little disregard to who or what might be within range.
Check out the album ‘Raining Anvils’ here.