For a guy who doesn't write about a lot of grindcore, it sure seems like every time someone emails me about a grind band over the course of the past year or so, it ends up being a really good grind band! Which brings us to yet another slab of absolutely face-ripping death-tinged grindcore courtesy of Helsinki, Finland's Fading Trail. Following 2019's Ground EP, the group's debut full-length, Count the Days, will hit the streets on November 18 via the EveryDayHate label (pre-order now on limited edition CD or digitally over at Bandcamp). The 10-song, 22-minute outing is dominated by fierce, powerful grind that leans hard toward a death metal angle while still retaining a certain undercurrent of hardcore/punk sensiblity. The tempos and textures are incredibly well-balanced, too; so it's a cohesive yet far from one-sided listen.
Stream the raging new track "Ruined" below, followed by a chat with the band for a bit more insight as to where they're coming from...
I hate to ask such a goofily typical question, but there's not much information about Fading Trail out there, so what's a basic little introduction to the group and how you all came together?
Yeah, there isn't much info about the band, because I suck at promoting my shit and I'm not good at social media. But of course if you want people to know about the band, you have to put it out there.
I've been making all kinds of music forever, and my love for grindcore, death metal, hardcore punk, noise, etc. has never gone away. I had many years of being fed up with making music, so I thought I had to start putting some grind out there at last. All the people involved in the band are old friends that share the same background. I guess you could say Fading Trail is more of a collective, since I'll ask any friend who has the time and interest to come and record or play live. The core of the band is me (Tomi) on drums and Markus on guitar.
It's been a little over two years since your first EP, and while there are definitely still some undercurrents of hardcore/punk behind your sound, it seems like the new material is possibly leaning even harder on the death metal-tinged side of raging grindcore—and there are also some experimental twists in final tracks like "Crawl" and "Count the Days." Has anything in particular changed about your writing process over the last two years?
It wasn't a conscious decision to make this album sound more death metal. These were the riffs that were in my head. All the old influences just blend in my brain and I vomit them out on tape. I really like how the last track turned out—having the drums just be a part of the noisy ambience without playing a straight beat. It's something that might be explored more on future releases, of course keeping grind/death the main thing.
The song we'll be premiering is "Ruined"—one of the album's many two-minute blasts of ferocious force with some hard-hitting tempo variation. Share some additional details about this composition and how it fits into Count the Days as a whole.
It represents the album very well, because it never stays on the same part for too long—to have the songs go different places, but always keeping it tight and energetic. Of course, the last track is something totally different since it's supposed to be static and just create an atmosphere. Lyrically the whole album has the same tone: how people try to go through life with varying success. How it's easy to give up on humanity if you look at what's on TV or social media. This kind of music just demands lyrics that concentrate on the shittier side of things. And of course it has some dark humor, like the sample in the beginning of the album and the Bill Hicks sample at the end of "Crawl."
I don't keep up with the grindcore scene very closely, but I've encountered so much excellent international grind over the past two years through bands like Bas Rotten, Eastwood, and now Fading Trail. Who are some other contemporary acts in this general style that you feel deserve more attention?
I hate to say it, but all the grind bands I know are at least 10 years old, so I haven't really kept up with the times. But I bet there are tons of new bands out there that would kick my ass with their music.