After the release of the great new Exciter album, the main man of the band John Riccy was kind enough to answer to all my questions.
Hello to the mighty John Ricci! Congratulations for the new album, it has taken me by storm. So what was the specific fact that made you to bring exciter back to life?
Exciter never went away, it’s been 4 years since our last release. New Testament. We haven’t had much publicity during this time but we have been active and playing shows. Thrash Speed Burn re-establishes Exciter as one of the pioneers of speed and thrash Metal. I think this line-up is the ultimate line-up we finally have 4 individuals with a common goal to succeed.
Can you give us some information about the current line up. Kenny Winter is a magnificent singer in the form of the classic exciter Power Screamers. How did you manage to find him? What about the other guys?
When our last singer quit in 2006 we advertised on the internet. Kenny Winter called us for an audition and from the audition we knew he was the singer for Exciter. We wanted a singer who was capable of screaming out the lyrics and had dynamic stage presence, Kenny has both these features. Clammy, the bassist joined in 2004 and Rik Charron,the drummer joined in 1996.Clammy and Rik played in various local bands before joining Exciter.
Tell us about the new album. When the 10 dynamites of it were composed? Have you written all the stuff yourself or there was a participation form the other guys as well?
I wrote the songs for TSB starting back in 2006.We were delayed entering the studio because like I mentioned before our last singer quit in 2006 and the studio we originally booked had scheduling problems plus the fact the record took us longer than what we expected -Sept.-Dec.2007-. I wrote all the songs but the other guys really contribute a lot with their ideas which at times make the songs better than I initially visioned.
Where did you finally record the album? Are you satisfied with the final result? Would you change anything if you could?
We recorded TSB at nCode studios in our hometown, Ottawa, Canada. Our producer’s name is Charles Fairfield. The studio was located near our rehearsal hall. We`re very pleased with the final result, we wanted a very basic garage sound and I wouldn`t change anything on this record.
Beside the fact that the album was released in 2008 it sound total old school, 80s and Metal and allow me a comment it is very close to classic Exciter releases like Valence And Force. Any comment?
TSB does sound old school (like Violence and Force) at first we weren`t sure if this production would be acceptable to the fans because it does not have new metal production but judging from the response I think we made the right decision.
What do you think are the strongest features of the new album?
I think the strongest feature of this record is that the songs are very strong and very classic in the Exciter tradition. I believe that is why we are getting such rave reviews.
Do you think that this record marks a new beginning for the band?
It does mark a new beginning for Exciter because it`s been 8 long years since our last record of new material. I would consider this a new beginning because the record has received so much attention and when we play the new songs live they get a over the top response from the audience.
Exciter was a band with big balls, you played ultra killer Metal able to take the listeners by storm but you remained mostly a good selling underground outfit with a cult status than a massive selling band like other bands that have started the same period as you and having similar sound, have managed to be (Metallica, Slayer etc). What do you think that was the main reason for this?
Bands that started out during the same time we did had better management and record companies that really promoted them. We did not have this opportunity primarily because we are based in Canada and we get no support here. Metal music is the Canadian music industry’s last priority, they don’t consider this music as having any artistic merit or potential for success. As a result during the 80`s we were popular all
over except in Canada which is the same situation for us today.
Are you in contact with any old members of the band? Do you know what Dan Beehler is doing now?
I am not in contact with any former members of Exciter.
I always wanted to ask how this guy made it in the live playing drums and singing the same time….
Beehler did great playing drums and singing but I have no further comment about him, we are not on speaking terms and never will again.
If I ask you to pick your favorite record from the exciter back catalog which one you choose?
My favorite Exciter record is the new one, TSB because you can head bang
from start to finish. It’s very intense.
Mentioning the back catalog are you planning to re release anything of this stuff?
We actually re-recorded old Exciter songs on our previous release New
Testament in 2004.
Ok that was all, thanks for the time and please remain a HEAVY METAL MANIAC!
Thanks for the interview, stay true to Metal, it’s the only music that matters !!! Hail to all Metal Crusaders !!! Thrash Speed Burn !!!
Interview by: Chris “CountRaven” Papadakis