After returning last summer for a strong for passionate festival appearances and headline shows Desolated let everybody know that they are back with a vengeance. The band was a driving force and relentlessly took British beatdown across the globe before sadly having some time away from the scene to focus on their personal lives in 2015. Faultline chatted to drummer Charlie Thorpe about returning to a Hardcore scene that has evolved at quite a rate during the bands time away. With a promise to write the most aggressive beatdown record ever during the 2020 lockdown, Desolated are here to stay and are forever a reckoning force.
Since reforming what changes have you noticed in the industry and scene, are things different for the worse or better?
Since the reform things have definitely progressed for the better, the quality of bands coming through has improved and heavy music has taken a somewhat nostalgic twist in my opinion with a part resurgence of 2007. A handful of bands who you can probably guess have been smashing it for our scene internationally and driving the genre to new ears which is a great thing for everyone involved.
Why was last summer the perfect time to come back? Was it then or never?
It was just a case of missing the whole thing, and longing to play some shows again!
What do you want to achieve this time around that you didn’t last time?
We’re going do a new album next. Harder and heavier than ever, drawing from our latest influences as per. Sometimes you just can’t fight the urge to write some hard music so here we are again but with a new line up, so excited to see what ideas are brought to the table by the new members. What do we want to achieve? Just a bunch of sick shows would do it for us. I would like to hit Asia and the USA one more time off this next cycle. Its been a while!
What was the band’s decision to split in the first place? Why did you feel you needed to take an extended break?
I think the break was much needed as some members needed to focus on their careers aside from the band and have a little time out to work on other areas of life. Maybe some enthusiasm was lost initially, but it always finds you again.
Your recent EP “A new realm of misery” saw you evolve as songwriters but during your break, the scene also evolved as well, do you feel these songs are best suited to the current climate and achieved more than they would have done four years ago?
Who knows. To be honest – they had a slight black metal vibe, whether you noticed or not, just because Richy wrote it all while listening to lots of Bathory. The new stuff we’ve been working on is evolving again. There is more Hardcore elements and more groove.
Who do you consider your contemporaries and what do you do differently to set yourself apart from them?
I can’t fully compare us to any other heavy band anymore, Desolated is what it is and these wounds are just still fucking bleeding.
How much does your new release affect how you think about the past; are you constantly re-imaging and updating how you think about your older songs when you perform them live?
Yeah always, if one doesn’t work live or doesn’t pop much online, leave it in the past and move on. Reflect and write some better bangers. The latest release wasn’t our best work in my opinion, and written during a transitional stage therefore was just a taster. The new record is going to be something else entirely, with a new line up and new ideas moving the band forward.
Hardcore has seen a huge resurgence of new bands forming on a regular basis in the past few years, what do you think it takes for a band to stand out these days and why do you think Desolated has been able to have such a long-standing a successful career compared to other bands?
I have no idea to be honest. People like smashing people in the pit. People like watching other people smash each other in the pit. People love to bitch about that too! I think that constant ‘crowdkilling’ argument sent us viral back in the day and made us a staple of heavy UKHC / metal, as well as relentlessly touring the world. Although having a couple of beatdown classic sing-along lines helped as well as a popping merch range, and of course the legendary M L V L T D.
What are your favorite independent venues to play in the UK?
Star & Garter – Manchester
Joiners – Southampton
Rotherham – Dickens / Charters Arms (RIP)
Finally, all things global pandemic depending, what can expect for this year from Desolated?
Loads of random hype merch while we wait for some gig offers to come through and in the meantime write the hardest Beatdown record of all time.
Interview by Rob Kent