Thursday, May 23, 2013

Catching Up With... Aethyris McKay

WEBMASTER: Hello Aethyris – thanks for taking the time to catch up with us. What have you been up to these days?

AM: Too much! My main focus has been work(promoting) over the last 10 months. I´m still adapting/learning the Norwegian lifestyle, playing in too many projects and chilling with my wife.

WM: Did you start at an early age performing a musical instrument?

AM: Yeah. My mom was always very supportive of my involvement in music, so it was a big part of what I did growing up. I started with cello in the 4th grade and then moved over to drums in my teenage years. Always poked around on guitar and would play live here and there with bands that were coming through as my mom did some promoting and a really good friend of hers was a local DJ at a rock station(back when those existed). So it became a novelty thing that they would arrange for me to play some 3 Lock Box or Lick It Up with whoever would let me ruin their set! But never really got too serious about guitar until my mid to late 20´s.

WM: What were your major influences?

AM: Everything seems to influence me in some way. We spent a lot of time at the lake in the early 80´s near a military base in a country town in central Texas, so whatever was big on the radio in those days, blaring from the home speakers hooked up to car stereos sitting on top of Camaros and whatnot. I really dug bands like Foreigner, Fleetwood Mac, Journey, AC/DC, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, etc…. But then there was the dads side of the family that had a whole other side of influence with Hank Williams Jr., David Allen Coe, Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings, etc….

WM: How did you get involved with members of ABSU?

AM: We all went to school together and played in bands that all had shared members and friendships at one time or another. I moved to the Dallas area (Plano) when I was 15 and hooked up with the Cooksey’s in Roller (aptly named by Proscriptor). Then came Infernal Oak which had members from Divine Eve. We all were located in the same rehearsal complex and when we weren’t rehearsing or touring, we were spending time in each others rooms killing brain cells.

WM: Any particular favorite memory while you were with the band?

AM: Not really anything that stands out as the favorite memory. All of it was fun, but I don´t think I enjoyed it quite as much as I should have looking back. I think my favorite part was honestly when it was just Proscriptor and I sitting in the rehearsal room creating new ideas by just going off at full volume for a few hours without much talk. Just jamming like eager teenagers and letting it happen.

WM: Did you continue any musical endeavors after you parted ways with ABSU?

AM: Yeah. Pantheon I. Did some touring and released a couple of tunes. Still working on the full length and should be finished with it sometime in the next couple of months. Really love what this band creates together. The musicianship is ridiculous. No weak links, so anything is possible when we get together. Also playing in Khonsu based out of Bergen. Love this project as well and look forward to seeing what we can do with the next release. Another project is Grotesque Hysterectomy which is just absolute chaos and fun. I did some session work with Dead Trooper and did a Euro tour as a session guitarist with Melechesh. I have a few other projects developing as we speak, so yeah, I´ve been busy since parting ways with Absu.

WM: Do you continue to follow the band?

AM: I saw them here in Oslo at Inferno festival last year. That was a little odd as the band I was playing in (Khonsu) was earlier on the same bill. I listened to the new release and must say what a piece of work. Very impressed with Vis Crom's playing and approach. And how Ezezu seems to be coming into his own inside the material. But no, I don’t follow them too closely.

WM: Thank you for your time to “catch up with us” and you can end this interview as you see fit including promoting your new material.

AM: Here are some links the various bands I am working with:

Pantheon I:


Grotesque Hysterectomy: