Interview: Andy Beresky of BLACK PYRAMID [05/07/2017]
Written by Marc C. Pietrek 2017
Guitarist/vocalist Andy Beresky of Northampton, Massachusetts-based “psychedelic war metal” trio BLACK PYRAMID telephoned-in on May 07, 2017 to be interviewed by VITRIOL, INC – A DARK UNITED FRONT (www.vitriolinc.com). I learned quickly that this very friendly and engaging musician’s journey into writing some of the most brutal riffs on the planet is an interesting one. Like many taken before his, it is one that has required a life re-evaluation at one point. And that re-evaluation has opened the door for a musical re-birth. Here are some key quotes from the interview:
On his Influences:
“When I heard JANE’S ADDICTION. That’s the band that changed a lot of things for me. I was like this doesn’t sound like everything else on the radio”…..”METALLICA, because I liked the structure of them more than anything, that four-piece setup”…..”The SMASHING PUMPKINS. We watched “Cherub Rock” (on MTV) and I was just like, ‘Holy crap! I’ve never heard anything like that’. There wasn’t anything else that sounded like that”….”I was really into HELMET and post-hardcore stuff like QUICKSAND and FUGAZI. When I first started, I came from a punk hard-core background. When I finally got that electric guitar, I just wanted to get out there and play. A lot of stuff had a big impact on me”…..”I was really into BLACK FLAGF when i finally heard them. I was like his is a little more subversive. This is a little more in-your-face”…..”Probably my all-time favorite guitarist is Peter Green from FLEETWOOD MAC. I really like his playing. He gets so much out of a single note. I think there’s a lot to be said for that”
On how BLACK SABBATH influenced his music writing:
“Kind of the consequences of listening to bands like SOUNDGARDEN and The MELVINS and KYUSS (that were all kind of punk influenced, even like BLACK FLAG’s ‘My War’) was like I wanted to slow down. But the thing is when you slowdown is you can’t get away three chords quite as well and I kind of had to learn to write riffs and one of the ways I did that was I spent the whole summer basically learning BLACK SABBATH riffs”…”This is how you write riffs. You want study riffs? You study these guys”.
On writing the songs for the first BLACK PYRAMID album:
“I was wanting to make some music that could get out there a little more”…..”I was listening to SLEEP ‘Holy Mountain’, ELECTRIC WIZZARD ‘Witch Cult Today’, the first HIGH ON FIRE album. I just sat there and listened to that stuff for like a week. (I was like) ‘Am I going to be able to do heavier music? Write heavier songs and sing them?’ Those were the songs that came out”.
On his decision to leave BLACK PYRAMID after a re-evaluation of his life:
“This is going to come as some shocker, but playing this kind of stuff doesn’t exactly pay the bills [laughs]…..” It drains on you after a while, just living that kind of lifestyle. Sometimes I bounced for extra money. Like getting knives and stuff pulled on you is not fun”…..”Sometimes when you are stuck on the middle of things, you have to get out of them to get some sight”…..”Things just kind of escalated to the point that it wasn’t going to keep working for me. It was going to get worse and worse”…..”To be fair, it wasn’t just the music. There were problems within the band and part of them were definitely my own thing. It’s not like I am innocent in all of this”
On re-joining BLACK PYRAMID and upcoming plans for the band:
“One of things was that I wanted to come back to music when I could do it on my own terms”…..”We’re going to do the Maryland Doom Fest this summer, which should be good. We’re working on a new album”…..”I like how things have gone in that we’re kind of considering the band permanent at this point but like semi-active in that we’ll kind of do it when we have time to do it and I think that’s worked”…..”A far as how cohesive it is, I thought our live shows were for the most part good. As good as they’ve ever been”…..”There’s more nuances to what we’re doing”.
Below is a link to the full interview on YouTube. Also, check out the other assorted BLACK PYRAMID links as well. Be sure to keep your eyes and ears open for their upcoming album and any future shows of theirs. If you have not heard this band yet, then definitely do so. This band has a sound heavier than a nuclear blast and the ripple effect that comes along with it. Cheers, ya rivet-heads!!
Andy Beresky [BLACK PYRAMID] 05/07/2017 Recorded Telephone Interview
Black Pyramid – Black Pyramid – Full Album
Black Pyramid – Stormbringer – Full Album
Black Pyramid – II – Full Album
Black Pyramid, Live