By Chris Illich
After listening to Vile Creature’s debut album A Steady Descent Into the Soil, one would never guess that the group had just formed less than a year ago. There is a depth and maturity to the dark, dreadful doomy heavy metal that challenges gender normativity that is well beyond their existence as a band – especially since their drummer Vic just started learning how to play upon inception of the group.
“It all came together pretty naturally,” said KW, guitar player and singer. “Vic decided that she wanted to play drums, and I just said ‘Buy a drum set and I’ll teach you.’ A week later she had a kit. I believe the best way to learn is to just write, so Vic was just learning to play from writing with me and by January we had 40 minutes of music based on one song in three parts, which ended up being our first record.”
The album, which was self-released on cassette tape has garnered favourable reviews and they were able to take their unique brand of anti-oppressive, queer, vegan doom metal on the road.
“I guess there’s a lack of queer representation in doom metal. There’s many a conversation with people way smarter than us about how metal is such a subversive genre, but not a lot of subversive thought has gone into it,” explained KW.
“There’s a lot of misogyny and homophobia and racism and all that weird stuff that comes along with heavy metal in general. We wanted to be able to talk about our experiences growing up as queer and trans-person and it was something that we were comfortable talking about and something that has been at the forefront of what we do.”
For instance, rather than playing in some dark and dingy bar, Vile Creature plays in LGBTQ friendly spaces and spaces that are geared toward marginalized voices. Because of these ideals, they usually end up being the odd doom metal band on the bill at shows.
But, the music speaks for itself. A Steady Descent Into the Soil is a rich listen – 40 minutes of atmospheric deep and heavy songs, both in music and in lyrical nature. For instance, the title track references a scenario about KW being attacked by a group of guys that ultimately ended with him spending the night in the hospital, simply for being different than them.
“People have been oppressed. We all want to live safe and happy lives, but it’s important for people who are able to create music to have their experiences be a part of it,” explained Vic. “But I don’t want to be the only queer doom metal band.”
In the fall, Broken Limb Records are set to release A Steady Descent on vinyl in the fall at a limited run of 300 copies – 200 black and 100 clear. In attempt to keep momentum building, Vile Creature are creating a music video, or, given the length of their songs, a short film to coincide with the release.
They are planning on releasing a misandry revenge film, inspired by films they enjoy such as I Spit On Your Grave and Hard Candy, where women or female-bodied individuals enact revenge on their male counterparts.
“Horror is generally misogynistic, and I know it could be construed as something super violent, but I think it’s important to give our take on these topics,” said KW. “That, and we like making videos. We’ve done a bunch of video flyers and announcements and we think it’s a really fun creative medium.”