Nick Adams Shares Why There's Always Room For Akubras In Metalcore

10 August 2017 | 9:22 am | Brendan Crabb

"For a long time our bass player used to wear an Akubra on stage, just 'cause he absolutely loved it. It was him, so we just let him go for it."

More Justice For The Damned More Justice For The Damned

Spawned several years ago via high school jam sessions, Sydney metallers Justice For The Damned are set to unleash maiden full-length Dragged Through The Dirt. Befitting of such an occasion, 21-year-old guitarist/vocalist Nick Adams' eagerness is palpable. "We're nervous for what the future's holding, but really excited," he says. "We're really keen to get up there (on stage) and bring all the heart and soul we've built up over the years of grinding."

Their feverish itinerary will facilitate considerable opportunities to do so. There are shows with Ocean Grove, headlining gigs and their first international tour (in Europe supporting heavy-hitters Thy Art Is Murder) all on the horizon. Not surprisingly, they're looking to scrimp as much as possible beforehand. "Once August kicks off the touring schedule looks really busy," the axeman explains. "Because of all that we've obviously got a lot to save for. So a lot of us aren't just working the day jobs, we're working them a lot right now while we've been a bit quiet. Everyone's been stuck down in saving mode. A few of us work in a call centre, a few of us are baristas, one of our guys is from Dubbo and he's back out there working. Everyone is doing the hard yards.

"We're all speculating a lot about what it will be like over there," he remarks of the impending overseas trek. "We did decide the other day that no matter how much we prepare, we're probably not going to know truly what it's like. But we're really hoping that we'll play as good as we can. We'll be really excited to see who, if any people, have caught wind of us and know the songs already. That will be really interesting to see; almost like an experiment to see where is the most on to it. We're just really hoping that we show everyone that we deserve to be there, and we deserve to come back."

When politely pressed for a descriptor of their music, Adams dubs it "blackened metalcore" and name-checks Gorgoroth and Dark Funeral among his black metal influences. "We really love a lot of heavy stuff, really grindy stuff, but we also love stuff that isn't quite so heavy. We try to be as diverse as we can. Really abrasive, dark and emotional, but something that a lot of people could latch on to it and find something in it."

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Although inspired by the grim and frostbitten, their shows certainly don't incorporate black metal aesthetic elements like corpse-paint. "When it comes to the performance it's probably more reminiscent of just, sort of, a more regular hardcore thing. We don't bring too much of the blackened image with us, probably because I think we're more comfortable just dressing up however we are usually, and just going for it the way we are," Adams laughs. "For a long time our bass player used to wear an Akubra on stage, just 'cause he absolutely loved it. It was him, so we just let him go for it."