GRAVEL: JUDAS PRIEST Bassist's Son Makes Waves With New Hard Rock Band

GRAVEL are a new band making waves on the U.K. hard rock scene. Based in Birmingham, the band is soaked in classic rock heritage with vocalist Damien "Dame" Walsh's Plant-esque style and bassist Alex Hill obviously having inherited some rocking genes (both leather and biological) from his father — JUDAS PRIEST's Ian Hill.

GRAVEL, rounded out by guitarists Robert Jones and Craig Price with Rob Stimpson on drums, have recorded demos for Sony at UB40's DEP International Studios, the same location used for the recently released IOMMI/HUGHES "The 1996 DEP Sessions". The band was recently interviewed by An excerpt from the interview follows: How much do you think the Black Country/Birmingham legacy (LED ZEPPELIN, BLACK SABBATH, JUDAS PRIEST, GLENN HUGHES, etc…) affects how aspiring bands from the region think? Does their success inspire you or terrify you??

Dame: "I think aspiring bands are proud of the Black Country legends. What you've got to remember now though is that it's 2004 and the industry is a mess and is centralised in London. Getting attention away from London to here is difficult and that's why most showcases are done in London. Look at the recent signed bands in England, I'm not that impressed. A&R guys all hunt in packs for the same type of thing, none dare try to take chances anymore and even if they do it’s for peanuts. I personally couldn't give two fucks about making it in England... America and especially Europe are far more open-minded. The success of the Black Country legendary bands inspires me 100%." What do you think it is about GRAVEL's music that makes you stand out from the crowd? I wonder which elements you think will make an A&R man really sit up and take notice?

Dame: "GRAVEL mix very different influences together into a big melting pot. Some of these influences are missing in most other bands. We've fused these influences together to forge the GRAVEL sound. There's a lot of bands out there whose songs all sound the same. If you look at our stuff, it's on a textural and dynamic roller-coaster. Rob Halford [JUDAS PRIEST] recently commented to Alex that our song 'Martian Skies' sounds like nobody else. Surely that's a good thing, surely this should make an A&R man really sit up and take notice, or maybe just the exact opposite."

Read Damien "Dame" Walsh's entire interview with at this location.


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