Interview with Ash Thomas of FaithXtractor by Patrick July 2013…

I remember hearing about this band some years back when Ash was still with Estuary {I believe FaithXtractor was either in the planning stages or had just begun not quite sure}. But anyways I'm glad to see the band finally got going and even happier I got a copy of their second release!  FaithXtractor is a two man  band consisting of  Ash Thomas  {vocals, guitars, bass, and drums} and his brother Marquis {vocals,guitars}. This is a strong release that deserves your attention, so I wanted to do this interview and get the word out on this cool band.



Metal hails Ash! How are things in Ohio these days? Please tell the readers a little about yourself.

It is what it complaints & getting by.  I'm an old Metal freak & musician that worships music.  Need I say more? 

At what age did you first discover metal? Who were some of the early bands you listened to?

I'd say during the later part of my eleventh year. It started with old Motley Crue, Twisted Sister, & Quiet Riot. By 12 it was onto Iron Maiden, Metallica, Megadeth & Anthrax...then of course onto Slayer, King Diamond, Kreator, Death & so on & so on. By 13 I was totally immersed in Metal & DEATH METAL in was the most important thing in my life.

Was it long until you discovered the wonderful world of the metal underground?  Who were some of the first bands demo bands you listened you found? Who are some of your current favorite metal bands?

Time, as with most adolescents, seemed to move so much slower back then.  During 1990 I was big on obtaining as much new music as possible.  Luckily there were some really decent record stores in the area where I could get a lot of great Death Metal full lengths that most chain stores didn't carry.  But in early 91, Morbid Angel came through Cincinnati by themselves a few months prior to the release of "Blessed Are the Sick".  At this show I was passed an ad for a zine called "Chapel of Ghouls".  I sent some cash for an issue, & once I got it, the whole demo/tape trading scene opened up for me.  It was awesome!  Some of the first tapes I mail ordered were the Phantasm demos, as well as Morta Skuld, Sin Eater, Embrionic Death, etc.   Once you received a tape, the envelope was filled with a shit ton of ads for other bands, so the cycle continued.   By 93 I had started my own band, & was heavily into the trading aspect of the scene.  Good times for me even if some of my older friends thought the good times were already long gone. As for my favorite bands nowadays, it's hard to say, as I like so many. Iron Maiden will always hold the #1 spot.

At what age did you become interested in playing music? What was the first instrument you learned how to play? What would you say was the easiest and the hardest instrument you learned to play?

For as long as I can remember I've been interested in & wanted to play music.  Guitar was the instrument I started with, but I believe the drums came more naturally as far as comfort while playing goes, etc.  I just had to wait much longer to start, as there was no kit available to even fuck around with until I was 15.  I still say guitar is the most challenging for me...I should be so much better at it for as long as I've been playing...but what the never stop learning.

Out of all the instruments you handle in FaithXtractor which would you say is your favorite one to play? Any instruments you want to learn someday?

I like doing all of them really, and feel like there's always room for improvement with all of them as well. I'd like to play the piano somewhat properly one day...not sure if that will ever happen.

FaithXtractor is just yourself {vocals, guitars, bass and drums} and your brother Marquis Thomas {vocals, guitars} when you got the idea to start this band/project did you plan to keep it just a two man band?

Yes, for writing & recording I like the set up as is.  It's just easier to keep a steady flow of direct ideas this way.  Part of Faithxtractor's formation was the impatience I had in working with my other bands that had full line-ups. There's no pressure with Faithxtractor expect to make good Death Metal.

Have you guys searched for other musicians to join the? If you had the opportunity to work with any musicians {past or present} who are some musicians you would like to work with?

I would like to do some gigs, & would obviously need bodies to do that...but it hasn't gotten that far yet.  I have some people in mind, but at the moment it’s just a thought & idea that needs to be considered.   There would be a huge list of people I'd like to work with musically...just name anyone from the golden age of Death Metal & they'd be on it.   It was really cool playing with Kyle Severn in Acheron.  We had done many gigs together in our respective bands but to actually jam together was a great vibe.  Felt very natural, & was a lot of fun.

FaithXtractor just unleashed their second release "The Great Shadow Infiltrator" through Deathgasm rec. how long did it take you guys to write the songs for this release?

When it's broken down, the writing process when in motion doesn't take very long.  However there are often big gaps of complete inactivity with Faithxtractor, hence the time between releases etc.  I'd say 6 months tops if you lay it out on a timeline of actual hours, days & months spent...but that's just an estimate.  When it flows it flows...when it doesn't, that usually means there are some other life distractions going on.  Next thing you know 5 years have gone by...hahaha.

When you and Marquis begin working on new music/song do you both work on it together or does one of you handle most of the music writing? What are some subjects/topics you guys write about?

We do everything separate.  I write my tunes & he writes his musically.  I tend to do lyrics always after the song is arranged, but titles & subject matter may be taking shape in an outline on the sidelines.  Then I place them to the arrangement.   Faithxtractor songs reflect our life philosophy & deal with the enslavement of this existence & the manipulation of this reality experience.

In your opinion what does the term "underground metal" metal mean to you?

Music that only few dare to understand & appreciate.   Music that defies normalcy.

I know you live in the great state of Ohio, I remember Ohio had a great thrash, death and black metal scene back in the mid to late 90's. What is the scene like nowadays compared to the then? Better or worse now same in your eyes?

It's still good up north in my opinion.  Amazingly enough, most of my contacts up that way are the same people I've been friends with for 20 years...It's hard to compare now & then...everything always seems better when you're young.  I'd just say it's different now…I know that’s kind of a lame answer, but the easiest way to explain it.

Who are your all time favorite metal bands from  Ohio? Are their any new  metal bands you feel the readers  should check out soon?

Decrepit is at the top of the list.  They were a great band.   Many props to Soulless, Embalmer, Acheron & Nunslaughter for keeping things going all these years.  Also, huge props to Hells Headbangers for being just a killer label.  Those guys rule.  Definitely check out Kurnugia, Crucified Mortals, Midnight, etc.

When not working on band music or business what do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Any hobbies?

Playing music is as much a hobby as any I can think of.  Listening to new music, going to shows & drinking with Metal brothers & sisters is what I'm into.  Other than that, I have spurts of exercise/training from time to time, but Metal is heavily involved in that as well…it’s the sonic motivator.

Well Ash thank you for taking the time to fill out this interview with me. Do you have final comments for the readers before we end the interview?

Thank you for the interview & for helping to spread the word about Faithxtractor.  The new album is available now as well as other items like t-shirts & patches.  Check out the facebook page or go to  Anyone into Dark Death Metal sounds will not be disappointed.  Cheers & Metal!




The FaithXtractor Discography 

Demo, 2006

Impious Trilogy / Project Trauma Split 7" EP with Crucified Mortals, 2008

Razing The World Of Myth Full-length, 2008

The Great Shadow Infiltrator Full-length, 2013




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