New York’s Fight From Within Talk New EP, Rust Fest & More


2021-05-03

Fight From Within – Story by Anne Erickson, photo by Joshua Davis Photography

This edition of Local Music Beat features an interview with downtown New York metal band Fight From Within

Hailing from central New York, the guys from Fight From Within make a special brand of heavy metal they coined as “ninja core.” It turns out that this kind of music, core ninja, started with a meme.

“Our music is definitely not the heaviest, but we try to make it super energetic,” the band told Audio Ink Radio. “A lot of our fanbase, often personal friends, came through in the hardcore scene, which means our pits tend to get pretty rough. When we were trying to brand ourselves with something recognizable, we decided to look at this angle.

Therefore, they created a ninja core. “It’s also kind of a pun with our name,” they added. “Our official fan group on Facebook is called FFW’s Fight Club, so the martial arts genre and fighting theme has become part of our brand.”

Fight From Within has a busy year ahead of it. The band are finishing their work on a new EP, “Call of the Void”. They are also set to perform at Rust Fest at the Sanctuary near Detroit, Michigan in August. The band members tuned into Audio Ink Radio to talk about the new music, their vision for the band, and why they’re excited to play Rust Fest. For more on Rust Fest, head here, and for more on Fight From Within, head here.

Anne Erickson: Tell me about the history of the formation of Fight from Within.

Mikey Throwdown: Fight From Within was launched by Tykeese Breeland, Dillon Guzzle and myself in November 2020, during COVID. I auditioned for them by sending them a cover of “The River” by Wage War, we started work this weekend. The name Fight From Within comes from personal struggles with mental health, drugs and alcohol. Everyone on this earth is affected by these in one way or another throughout their lives.

You have a new EP on the way. What can you tell us about the upcoming release?

Mikey: The EP will be called “Call of the Void”, and the tracks on the EP will be more in line with the direction we’re heading now that the lineup is solidified. We think it will be very well received by our community and new listeners. One cool thing we can say is that Chelsea Grin’s Pablo Viveros is going to mix and master it. He’s a legend, and we’re all big fans, so it’s kind of surreal.

Connor MacDougall: The EP will mostly consist of songs that we’ve already played live. Staying on-brand with the band’s theme and its origins, the topics deal with our personal struggles with mental health, so there are parts that get pretty dark, lyrically. At the end of the day, while the struggle is a big part of it, it’s really about struggling against what we’re struggling with. The title track, “Call of the Void,” is where that theme comes to a head, and we say, “No, I’m not gonna let my demons get the better of me; I will fight and I will win. “These songs were all written in the last year or so, and while writing them we went through many line-up changes, so this EP is also very much about us as a band finding our collective voice. It’s super exciting, and I think it’s going to be a really big moment for us.

Fred Turner: From this interview, we mostly structured the songs that will be on this EP with some last minute tweaks that inevitably end up happening. This is actually my first time doing home tracking, so it’s going a bit slower than expected, but the key to the best music produced is always having the best input possible, so it’s is absolutely crucial. As Mike mentioned, once the tracking is done, we will send everything to be mixed and mastered by Pablo. I’m thrilled that his input and reviews really help bring the songs and the EP as a whole to life.

What was your vision for the new EP? The beginnings of any band are important, as they really set the tone for the band for years to come.

Mikey: We all have different styles and unique tastes in music. I myself am a hardcore guy at heart. There aren’t enough two steps to go around. Jakey is a deathcore/slam caveman, and the others seem to gravitate towards metalcore. We want to use all of our favorite elements in our music, but also show our willingness to experiment early.

Fred: For me, I always strive to make each song individually stand out from the others while bringing a common theme to all the songs so that they have meaning as a whole. As for the vibe of the EP, there’s some pretty dark content here. Much of it is rooted in anger, anxiety, and depression, and I’ll take Connor’s point a step further and say that the instrumentals should help complete the story where words can’t. The mix of our different styles and tastes has brought out some interesting combinations of songs so far. People get bored so quickly these days, so I think it’s absolutely necessary for anyone to put as much thought into the content they create as possible. You can’t stand out if you do the same song the same way as 35 other bands. The other big thing for me is that since my other band crosses over a lot of similar genres with the main element landing in metalcore, I try to make sure it doesn’t sound like an A Greater Danger album. It’s easier said than done, but I think this EP will stand on its own, the Fight From Within sound being obvious.

What excites you the most when it comes to releasing new music here?

Mikey: Personally, I’m a social media analytics enthusiast, so I love tracking our growth. You should be proud of what you are working on. I also know that the more music we play, the more people learn the lyrics, which also means more people come to the mic!

Connor: The most exciting thing for me personally, since I only joined the band last November, is that this will be the first thing I’ve ever come out with them, or any project, to somewhere else. This EP is my introduction to the scene as a recording artist, so there’s kind of a push to make it as great as possible. At the same time, though, it’s my first material that I’ve written that’s been published, so there’s almost a safety net in the sense that it’s still a learning experience for me. That said, these guys are all incredibly talented musicians, and that definitely helped me do something really great. I think people will really enjoy it.

Fred: It’s always about trying to connect and hopefully help more people through music. That’s the main reason I’m doing this – the hope that someone out there will listen to one of the songs I helped create and that it helps them through a tough time or gets them excited to going to crush it whatever their passions. Music is ultimately always about connecting with like-minded people, and that’s what has always excited me since I started writing.

Fight From Within plays the metal music festival Rust Fest at the Sanctuary near Detroit in August. What are you most looking forward to when it comes to playing the show?

Mikey: Honestly, meeting new people and showing people what we have. We have a lot of energy and we are ready to try to party. Also, we’re playing with My Own Will again, and they’re some of the best guys we’ve had the chance to share the stage with.

Connor: I’ve only been in the band about seven months since this interview, and I only played my first show a few weeks ago, so I’m just looking forward to playing more shows. For Rust Fest in particular, it’s probably going to be the biggest crowd I’ve played for, so that’s exciting for me. I also look forward to discovering new places and meeting people.

Fred: Like everyone else – going out and meeting new people and sharing the stage with others who are passionate about their craft.

You’re from downtown New York. How would you describe the metal music scene in the New York State area?

Collective Response: We feel like the heavy music scene, as a whole, is booming in New York. There are plenty of new and existing artists who are willing to work together and leave behind some of the old mindsets and methods of developing a band and their respective scene. We see a bright future for downtown New York and surrounding areas, and we are excited to be a part of its growth.

What are some of your favorite places to play across the United States?

Mikey: We only played five in total, but I always wanted to play The Masquerade in Atlanta and Chain Reaction in Anaheim.

Fred: I would say any of the iconic stages and locations like the Palladium in Massachusetts or the Troubadour in Los Angeles, to name a few. The history of places like this makes you feel things that you can’t really explain when you’re there.

When it comes to local music, which metal bands do you think should be on people’s radar?

Collective Response: Locally you need to hear Destroy//Create, Deadbeat and A Greater Danger, the latter being our guitarist Fred’s other band, so we’re biased. Also easy death, red letter, outlook, stop and next try. Nearby, check out The Fallen Prodigy, Oakheart, Somewhere To Call Home, Inertia, Downswing, Desolate, Speaking In Tongues and Adhara. Regionally, check out Until The Dead Walk, Soulthief, My Own Will, Autumn Lies Buried, Alukah, RVNT, and Head Hunter.

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