become world famous and its probably safe to say, we all want to get rich of not famous from our craft.
Yet there are some who would prefer to remain somewhat anonymous. It’s not unheard of, but certainly not overly
This leads us to a band in South Wales, UK called SLaM. Not to be confused with the DJ/Producer duo from Scotland.
The story goes; "In 2014, 3 friends got together in the hopes of making Instrumental Metal that would be used by friends
in the Gaming Community. They decided not to reveal their faces or names as a message that the Music should be the
focal point & not the Musicians."
In this interview we talk to one of the members who goes by the moniker Riff Clitchard.
On your facebook page you have your band members listed as Riff Clitchard - Bass, Ruddy Bich - Drums, Mave
Dustaine - Guitar. Cleverly obvious shout outs to music giants across several genres. Are you fans of the artists you
drew the names from?
Yes I am fans but for different reasons.
Cliff Richard has always had a bad rap for his beliefs & his music style but a Comic Genius by the name of Rik Mayall made liking
Cliff cool in the 1980's when Cliff's music & respect was the underlying tones in the sitcom "The Young Ones", as my love for Rik
Mayall has lasted my entire life it was the easy choice to pay respects to both Rik & Cliff.
Buddy Rich was THE drummer who first captured my imagination from old Black & White footage of him playing back when I was a
small child & my Uncle was showing me the way a drummer should play.
As for Dave Mustaine he is a loud mouth lunatic but his song creations are some of the most twisted yet brilliant I have ever heard,
his playing style bleeds through into SLaM's Music especially in the track Found Face Down.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
My main influence is Saint Jeffery of Hanneman R.I.P. whose playing & writing technique is unbeatable, however as a
young lad I listened to loads of different music & Vic Christian from Concrete Sox had a superb playing style, his string
speed was off the hook & I always wanted to sound as good as he did & play as fast as he did on the Your Turn Next
LP. I have been playing for a long time now & I seek influence from many bands including Black Sabbath, Six Feet
Under, sHEAVY, Crowbar, 9xDead, Sky, Emerson Lake & Palmer, 10CC, Napalm Death, Depeche Mode, Faith No
More, Truckfighters, The Sword, Sasquatch, & more recently The Shez from Operation Neptune Spear.
The Shez I am proud to say is a good friend of mine & everytime he writes a track I am always blown away by his
abilities. I would like to give a mention to the boys from 9xDead who are just so on their game with writing & recording
quality tracks consistently and yes they are very good friends of mine but their music will stand the test of time.
Why the name SLaM?
This is a tough question to answer, orignally it was to be used as a play on words where you could make up any
number of meanings behind the word SLaM. The absolute best version of this was from a young Musilim Extremist
that was trolling us in 2014, he would ask a number of strange questions about if we hated our family or our Country
and why would we not want to use our real names & why we covered our faces and these types of questions went on
for a while then out of the blue he made a post where he had taken the logo & it read SLaM = Satan Loves all
Musilims. I was really impressed with his creativity & he had obviously given it some thought and felt that this was
going to annoy us, when it didnt have the desired effect this self proclaimed extremist started sending messages in
his own language (which I can only assume were abusive in nature) & then blocked us. Can I just point out that SLam
absolutely does not stand for anything.
you draw inspiration for purly instrumental compositions?
Using exactly the same process however we rely on the listener to use their imagination and build their own
landscape as the song goes on its journey. I are fully aware that with Instrumental Music there is no place to hide so
we have to keep the entire track exciting & you need to pull the listener in, the Track Title is simply there to
encourage a line of thought for the listener to build on. In previous Bands it was normal for the lyrics to come first &
then build the song around it. Its nice to have a challenge and to do things differently.
We are using the track "Ich Dein" in the article. What can you tell us about that tune?
Ich Dein is German for "I Serve" & is the Moto of the Welsh Nation, and as I Serve Music it seemed fitting to not only
pay respect to the People who have accepted me (The Welsh) but I also liked the idea of a double entendre. The
Moto Ich Dein goes back to 1346 AD and was originally used by John of Bohemia who fought in the Battle of Crecy
against the Black Prince. The Black Prince won the Battle and took John of Bohemia's Helmet with the 3 Ostrich
Feathers from his dying body. Welsh archers were used in the Battle & the Black Prince was really impressed with
how they helped win the Battle & so the moto and the 3 Ostrich Feathers were fullt adopted by the Welsh originally
as a Battle Honour but more recently as an identity.
What can you tell us about how you go about composing your music?
I hate having unfinished works so I will generally write an Intro & work it through from there.
I only present a complete song, from there the song is pulled apart & pieced back together until it has passed the 5 point check that I apply to every Track. I am lucky to have a
listening group that get to hear the tracks in their raw form & then tell me which bits they like & which bits they dont. This format includes the fans that are closest to the Band & gives
Are you purely a studio band, or do you perform live?
When we started out as a full Band the intention was to not just preform live but to add an element of showmanship &
theatre to the whole performance (which is where the Gas Masks came into play) however it became apparant that
the other members were not interested in doing the live element & just wanted to jam & record, this is all good to get
everything perfect but I really need to be on a stage rocking out regardless of how many people are in the crowd.
Now thats its just me in the Band I will carry on recording, writing & releasing until early 2017 when I will be recruiting
new members to help me take SLaM to the next level. My head is brimming with ideas and with years of building up a
significant number of live performances I need to be on that stage with 2 or 3 people who get & understand the
direction this Band needs to go in.
Are any of the members of SLaM involved in any other music projects or bands?
I have been in a few different Bands and I love getting involved with other Musicians. The Shez & I have been doing
some tracks together & the next SLaM EP is going to be very special as it will feature the same Track "Weaponised
Hatred" in its original Instrumental form & then 4 versions done with different vocalists, I have given full creative
control to the vocalists over the lyrics & style that they sing it in. The new EP will be released early in 2017.
We are hearing quite a bit from metal bands around the UK.
are pushing the boundaries & really stamping their own sound onto the scene. There is
also have a good selection of practice places & Recording Studios so on any given night
you can find a Band jamming or Recording.
In a mashup of Star Wars and Star Trek, imagine James Hetfield as one of the main
characters. What do you think his name should be (Star Wars) and what color shirt
(Star Trek) would he be wearing and why?
Star Wars - Hamish Jetfield
Star Trek - Blue shirt for Medical Team
He wears Blue because in any other colour shirt he would extremely dangerous (hence why
his record label has banned him from ever going on a skateboard, the bloke is accident