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Ruadh: Atmospheric Black Metal from Scotland

Ruadh: Atmospheric Black Metal from Scotland

RUADH • 2020 • Pic: Kim Copland

Ruadh: Atmospheric Black Metal from Scotland

Ruadh is an Atmospheric Black Metal solo-project from Glasgow, Scotland whose compositions are absolutely epic in scope. Drawing from the history and folklore of his Scottish homeland and beyond, Ruadh mastermind Tom Perrett transports the listener into a thrilling auditory adventure in the grand tradition of Viking Metal-era Bathory, Windir  and WinterfyllethHighwire Daze recently interviewed Tom Perrett to find out more about the amazing Ruadh, and the legends found within their latest The Rock Of The Clyde magnum opus.  Read on…

Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Ruadh, and how long the band has been together.
Hi, my name is Tom, and I am the only full time Ruadh member. The project has existed since 2018.

Where are you based out of and what is the local metal scene like there?
I am from Glasgow Scotland. The scene here is small but good, Glasgow has a fine tradition of producing good metal bands.

How did you wind up with Northern Silence Productions?
It was purely by chance, I asked “Ethereal Black Metal” on facebook to give me some feedback on a demo from Sovereign waiting” with some pretty crappy sounding programmed drums. They shared it on the page, most comments weere complimentary and then Tors ten messaged me asking to hear the album when it was done. So I finished the album and the rest is history really.

Is there any overall story or concept behind The Rock Of The Clyde title?
Pre Christian Celtic history is difficult to gather together, Celts didn’t use writing to record their history it was all done through the teachings of language, like the druids for instance. We have limited resources and most of them are biased towards Rome but The Rock of the Clyde is a standalone title for the album and the song, the other songs deal with emotions and spirituality in a sense towards nature and the wheel of the year. Songs like Winters Light are based on old customs whereas songs like Only Distant Echoes Reign both parts are more of a love letter to the country and it’s history and it’s visual aesthetic.

Artwork: Joan Llopis Doménech Illustrations

Select any two other songs from The Rock Of The Clyde and what inspired the lyrics.
Embers deals with the seasons changing and of course the death of the old world giving birth to the new world. Also the embers of the flame could mean so many things to so many people, so I won’t break the barriers too much there. I’ll leave it to interpretation.

Fields of Heather is about the visual beauty of Scotland once again “Laying on the hillside, scattered on the glens, the blissful fields of heather for which my soul still yearns.” It’s about needing to be in nature really. I live in the city and it’s sterile cold and rather unpleasing to the eye but when you travel outside of major cities, not even so far as north you will find little bits of the country that are just incredible.

Who did the cover art for The Rock Of The Clyde and how much input did you have on it?
A great artist called Joan Llopis Domenech. I gave him a very simple brief which was something like. “Scotland, In autumn and featuring Dumbarton Rock (The Rock of the Clyde)” and his first sketch blew me away.  We where on the same page right away.

What has it been like to release a new album right in the middle of a pandemic? Have you had any shows cancelled?
Some shows have been postponed for example Dark Troll in Germany and a few other gigs as well, but nothing has been cancelled. It’s challenging for sure but it’s heart-warming to see so much support for the scene from fans as a result of everything going on, I think people are more willing to support bands they even perhaps only passively like which is great for smaller bands and labels of course.

What could one expect from a live Ruadh show?
That’s a good question, Obviously it’s in its infancy because we have actually only played 2 gigs with the current line up and one before then in general. Our particular brand of Celtic metal is quite unique. I often feel like a lot of black metal is written by people who perhaps don’t enjoy old school metal and sometimes it shows. I feel Ruadh doesn’t do that, the twin leads and the large choruses in the songs could easily be traditional metal but with the obvious ingredient of black metal pounding through the whole thing.

Atmospheric black metal is a style I truly enjoy and there are a lot of bands that I love in that style from Cold World, Saor, Alcest, Agalloch, Panopticon and so on but I also add ingredients of my classic favorites like Bathory, Windir, Emperor etc. So I would like to think that a live show would incorporate all of these ingredients.

If Ruadh could open for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
I would have to choose Bathory. I know he didn’t play gigs but it’s a fairy tale scenario, so I choose Bathory.
If that’s not allowed then bands that actually play or played live, Runrig (Scottish folk rock).

Are you currently involved with any other bands or projects outside of Ruadh?
I have a few projects cooking at the moment but I really can’t say much about this, in a few months perhaps.
One is black metal and I plan on releasing it probably in Winter.

Ruadh is invited to cover a song on a tribute to Bathory album. What song would you cover by Bathory and why?
The Lake, its my favourite Bathory song.

What’s up next for Ruadh?
I’ve already started writing album 3, about 10 demos into it so that’s going well. Hopefully more shows when this global pandemic is over.

Any final words of wisdom?
Thanks so much to everyone who has supported the project, it means a lot to me and please stay safe and I’ll hopefully catch up with you all one day. Slainte Mhath!

Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions!
Thanks for including me and you take care.

(Interview by Ken Morton)

Tom Perrett • All Instruments, Vocals
Cieti • Female Vocals
Kimberly Copland • Bass
Philip Morrison • Drums

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