Gold Coast’s own thrash-groove-metal masters AZREAL are about to hit the road for a tour of epic proportions. They’ve nabbed a support slot, joining DevilDriver for a 19-date tour of the USA and Canada in February.
AZREAL join Death Angel, Winds of Plague and The Agonist as support bands for the tour which kicks off in Santa Ana, California and ends in Seattle. It’s the band’s first tour of north America so you can imagine their excitement. Samantha Morris spoke to frontman Luke Hosking about the gig and he said his reaction was one of “complete elation” when they nabbed the DevilDriver support slot.
“We have been working on getting over to the US to tour for a little while now and weren’t sure what we were going to be able to achieve in terms of getting on a solid line up and carting ourselves around such a large country,” Luke told Blank Gold Coast.
“We are absolutely pumped and ready to hit it as hard as we can.”
“Death Angel are Bay Area thrash royalty. They were formed in the 80s with the likes of Slayer, Megadeth, Metallica, Testament and basically all that is holy in thrash metal so we are big fans,” Luke said, raving about the rest of the lineup.
“Winds Of Plague and The Agonist are also hugely influential in their own right, and in the metal scene as a whole.”
It’s a big deal for AZREAL to hit the big ol’ U S of A. They’ve never toured north America before and Luke is hoping the trip will have a big impact on the band’s future.
“The exposure alone should help us along in our future endeavours,” he said.
“We hope to do a lot more international touring so we will keep pushing as hard as we can to get as far as we can as a band.”
The tour is also likely to be the catalyst for some new releases. It’s been a while. As well as preparing for the tour, the band is a long way into writing a new album and will be hitting the studio as soon as they return.
“Writing and recording albums is right up there with playing and touring for us and we take it seriously. But we also immensely enjoy the process together so we are all looking forward to hammering another one out,” Luke said.
“We are prepared to push as hard as we can to play the best shows we can for this tour,” Luke said.
“We’ll get home and record a new album and hit the road again later in the year. 2017 is a big year for us and we intend to make it count so there is a lot to come for Azreal.”
The band is crowdfunding to support their US tour and have raised half of their target of $10,000.
“We’d like to thank everyone from the Gold Coast and beyond that has come to our shows, bought our merchandise and supported us over the years,” Luke said.
“We couldn’t hae done it without the support of everyone who has helped out along the way. You know who you are and we use your ongoing support to fuel the fire of this next chapter.”
Give to Azreal’s US tour fund at tinyurl.com/azrealtour. They’re on tour with DevilDriver from 8 February – 5 March. But you can catch them at a special pre-tour fundraiser on Saturday 28 January at the Currumbin Pub.