In the Wake of The Mayhem….there’s F.I.L.T.H. at The Haven

‘Tis now ten days after the glorious Mayhem that engulfed thousands upon thousands of the metal faithful in Tampa on Friday the 13th of July.  The very next day we were on our way out the door to hop on a plane to New Orleans; we came back to Florida and made a run to catch Wildman Productions first outrageous show at The Brass Mug; and then traveled on to Madeira Beach for a few more days.  Now finally back home, our brain is still filled with the sites and sounds of Mayhem.  Try as we might to take it all in, it is just not possible to be everywhere and see everything.  That must be why we return every year for more of the insanity.

We must note that Betraying the Martyrs is the one band we walked away completely intrigued with. They played on the Sumerian stage (a sort of a tent, really) amongst  the masses, up close and personal.  Betraying the Martyrs seriously kicked ass and created a most stellar pit in front of the little stage.  With the threat of more rain looming over our heads, this six man band hailing from France definitely captured our attention and we must now find ourselves a copy of their 2011 release “Breathe in Life”.  We will keep our eyes open for their return to the U.S. in hopes that we can see them again in the near future.

     And honestly dear friends, you all know how awesome a show with As I Lay Dying, White Chapel, Anthrax, Motorhead, Slayer, and Slipknot is.  If you were there… you don’t need us to reiterate; and if you weren’t there… you don’t need us to rub it in.  We’ve already started making plans to be part of the 2013 festival and every year after… for as long as the Mayhem continues…. 

Nice ink.  Who was he was there to see?  

 SPECIAL FEATURE:  Interview with Eric Mann and Mike Andes of F.I.L.T.H.

With their show at The Haven coming up Friday night, July 27th, we were privileged to get a peek into the world of F.I.L.T.H.   And while not necessarily Ms. Rose’s opinion on things, we are most happy to present this straight up, in-your-face, take no prisoners interview with Eric Mann and Mike Andes:   

How did F.I.L.T.H. come together, and when?

The bands origins can be dated as far back as 2009 when our Bassist Mike Vettel and our Guitarist Mike Andes had already begun writing what would be the foundation of F.I.L.T.H. They enlisted new members for the project only to realize later the line up would ultimately have to change. “There was a lot going on at the time…” recalls Mike Andes, “…the timing just wasn’t right for the direction we wanted to go…” The two of them then decided to put the project on hold.

Almost a year later, they were introduced to drummer Freddie Hull. “I was playing with Kevin Palmer (Trust Company) before I stepped away from playing….I hadn’t played in almost 12 years. By the time I was introduced to Mike and Mikey, I was playing in a local cover band…” For the next several months, the three of us talked about putting it all together and in early 2011, headed into the studio and started to go to work. “Freddie came in and branded his own style to the chemistry that Mikey V and I already had….he just fit…” exclaims Mike Andes.

Soon after, the three began the search for, what would ultimately be the next piece to the line up. And it didn’t take them long before front man Eric Mann brutally filled the void they were searching for. F.I.L.T.H. was born. “I hadn’t been in any bands before. I had done some promotional work and what have you, but I’d never been in an actual music project. For about a year, Mike Andes had hit me up about trying out, but the timing was never right.” Mike Andes remembers, “I had seen both Eric and Freddie perform on stage and I’d already worked with Mikey V, so, I knew that the chemistry was there…I just had to put them all in one room and see if it worked.”

To date, the band has been pushing forward in 2012 and bringing our music and our somewhat controversial and completely unique live show to fans of heavy music everywhere. You may enjoy it. You may be offended by it.

Who would you give credit to as your most important influences?

Eric Mann: If we tried to list every band that we were influenced or inspired by, this blog post would be about 300 yards long. The simple fact of the matter is, it’s much easier to talk about what styles of music we bring to the table, versus individuals or groups we are inspired by. Each member of the band comes from a different genre background. Not only that, but we come from different generations. The youngest member is 24. The oldest member…won’t let me mention how old he is.

So, we bring to the table a little bit of the hard rock/thrash from the 80s, mix it in with a little bit of the bounce and groove from alternative and nu metal from the mid 90s, and then we add in just a touch of the heaviness from more modern metal core styles. Our live show is reminiscent of the shenanigans that were seen back in the day with Motley Crue and WASP.

We have just been listening to your single “Criminal”, and feel that this particular track is not metal, but very reminiscent of late 80’s/early 90’s hard rock.  Would you agree?

Eric Mann: We agree. That song is, for lack of a better word, our ‘mainstream’ song. We put it out there as our first single because it’s a very palatable song that both metal fans and more mainstream fans can enjoy, and also because it was the first song we ever wrote as an entire band. The other songs we had at the time were already in the works when I joined the band. Criminal was the first song that we, as a band, sat down and created from scratch, and we feel it is a great representation of what each member of this band brings to the table.

The thing about F.I.L.T.H is, we write what we wanna write. We’ll start with a catchy guitar line and write a song like Criminal, or maybe we’ll have this great idea for a breakdown and write a song like Dirty that just brings the straight up, in your face speed of thrash metal with the slower, crunchier points like you see in modern metal acts. The four of us come from such different backgrounds, the songs we write can get quite eclectic. You’ll see that at our show on the 27th at the Haven Lounge(

Mike Andes:  “Criminal” was written sitting on a couch with an acoustic guitar. The idea didn’t start with “we have to make a main stream song”. It just came out. We don’t try to write what is acceptable or what is considered main stream. Even with the covers we like to play around with, we make it our own. And if you don’t like it, so what! We like it!

We know that you will be at The Haven on July 27th, and look forward to seeing you.  But, where and when was F.I.L.T.H’s first live show?

March 24, 2012 …. RIP Modus Operandi

Can we expect a good sampling of original F.I.L.T.H. music at the show?

Eric Mann: You can expect a good sampling of original F.I.L.T.H music at any show. Even if it’s a cover.

Mike Andes: I guess I don’t understand the question. Define sampling? What the hell does that mean? It is my understanding that sampling is just portions of a song, at our show, you get the full exposure from covers to originals, you can always expect a great show!

In your blog site ( you make it very clear that you feel that metal shows are boring and that people should get a show for their money.  There have been
some great showmen in the hard rock /metal genres; from the old days of Alice Cooper to Marilyn Manson to Slipknot and a ton of others along the way.  We’ve seen the theatrical, the technical, the serious drama, and the humorous antics, along with a touch of burlesque and vaudeville thrown in for good measure.

Eric Mann: See, let us offer a small correction there. Half of that first sentence is true. People SHOULD get a show for their money. We, however, do not believe that metal shows are boring. Rather, we believe that modern metal acts, both young and old, have moved away from the days when rock’n’roll was intended to bring the party. Heavy Metal and Rock music used to be dangerous. People used to say that the music was going to be the death of the culture. The destruction of the American value system. Nowadays, metal and hard rock are being blared out of mini vans and at little league games. Bands don’t bring the party on stage like they used to.  

Some bands still do it, though. Fields of Glass is a great example. They bring the theatrics and create a whole new world on stage for you. Indorphine brings that same level of excitement and showmanship without the costumes and props. They have a natural energy that just ignites the crowd.  Plenty of bands do it. That blog post was intended to be seen by fans, by consumers. We are advocating consumer awareness. We keep seeing “Support Local Music” being waved around like it’s a charity case, almost like we are comparing local musicians to children with cancer or the homeless, a thing that needs your charitable donations to survive. We as musicians are not charities. A band is a business, and if you don’t do business right, you’ll go the way of the dinosaur. We are telling music fans that, if a band is not entertaining live, don’t go to the live show. Demand that bands bring the party. Demand that musicians make rock’n’roll dangerous again, with the drinking and the sex. Hell, you wouldn’t keep supporting a plumber who does a bad job?

What is different about F.I.L.T.H.’s stage show?

Eric Mann: We use an age old technique that is awesome which includes boobs, booze, and breakdowns. We get on stage and rock you for 30 minutes to an hour. Bringing the party and making our shows enjoyable and filled with shenanigans. We attempt to give you an arena or large festival experience no matter what size venue you are in. There is no arrogance as to assume we have the patent on using sex and booze to sell a product. We’ll show you a F.I.L.T.H.y, dirty good time. You’ll see dancing women, fire and we’ll even throw liquor on you. You can dance, mosh, jump, and do whatever you want. If you have questionable tastes, you’ll lavish in our brand of entertainment. If you want to have a stupid amount of fun, come to one of our shows. Our shows are unique and creative. We do what will entertain people.

We think that most die-hard metal heads will agree that it is about the music first and foremost.  A great show is just the icing on the cake for most of us.  Will the music or the show be the main focus for your band?

Eric Mann: To answer your question both, however, the live show is a separate monster all on its own. Of course your music has to be good, at least as far as people with like-minded tastes are concerned, because you are a band and your product is, after all, your music. But as I stated, when you play a live show, you are expecting people to leave their house, spend their gas money, spend money to get in the door, and pay more money for drinks than they would drinking at home. If you are going to inconvenience your customer, you should give them an experience they won’t forget. Give them their money’s worth.

Our focus is our music and our live show. Our live show enhances our music. We give you a live show that you will never forget, and then, you’ll delve a little deeper. You’ll enjoy the music more. You’ll enjoy “Criminal” more if every time it comes on you remember the hot girl in the green skirt that shook her goods in your face while it played live in front of you.  You’ll remember Dirty a little more(or less) fondly, if you remember how I, the singer, showed the entire club my hairy ass at the end of the song.

Where would you like to see F.I.L.T.H. in the next year?  

Eric Mann: On top…   Or behind. We aren’t picky.

Thank you for taking the time to interview with us.  Can’t wait to see what’s in store on Friday night and in the future with F.I.L.T.H. 


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: