Interview with Danny “Murf” Murphy (Rezinwolf)
Rezinwolf was first formed in 2009 as an intense four piece thrash force. Based in the UK, they delivered blisteringly fast songs with musical ingenuity and precise technicality. Rezinwolf released their critically acclaimed debut album “Corruption Kingdom” through Killer Metal Records in 2013 to rave reviews, accumulating in being invited to play at the esteemed Bloodstock Festival and an appearance of the album’s lead single “Hail to Armageddon” on the cover mount compilation cd of respected UK metal magazine “Metal Hammer”
After a short hiatus in 2015, rhythm guitarist and vocalist Danny “Murf” Murphy and bassist Ed Munson decided to reinvent the band and introduce new and iconic lead guitarist Mitch “Faz” Farrington who added new skills and ingenuity to the band. In 2016 they found new drummer Josh Moreton who after one single together “Poison Ivy” they decided was not fitting with the band’s criteria in terms of direction, which sadly led to them parting ways. The band then recruited Cal Tuffen after a short gap and returned to the stage to rock the Colchester Arts Centre with Dani Filth’s Devilment. Cal has added awesome new qualities/skills to the band’s sound, which can be heard through the awesome new Rezinwolf single “Restart Your Heart” dedicated to Murfs late mother Lisa who sadly passed from cancer a short while ago.
I thought it was time I sat Murf down to interrogate him on all things Rezinwolf since “Corruption Kingdom” was released. The following is what transpired between us.
Danny “Murf” Murphy – Lead Vocals/Guitar
Mitch “Faz” Farrington – Lead Guitar
Ed Munson – Bass Guitar/Vocals.
Cal Tuffen – Drums/percussion
You guys seem to have a real originality about you musically and image wise, kind of like a metal/glam/grunge/thrash image and vibe to you. What sort of message would you guys say you’re spreading nowadays?
“Haha well we are all very influenced by a variety of music, ranging from The Doors and Pink Floyd to Metallica, Motörhead, Iron Maiden, Avenged Sevenfold, Black Sabbath, Dragonforce, Gloryhammer, Testament, Judas Priest, Steel Panther and Pantera. Me and Faz are more the glam hippy thrasher type dudes, ya know Faz likes straight up lightning style solos such as Slash and Satchel stylistically. I’m massively Hetfield, Jim Morrison and Layne Staley influenced vocally, and Hetfield again for guitar along with Chuck Schuldiner, Scott Ian, Zakk Wylde etc. Kurt Cobain, Dickinson, Anselmo, and Halford often creep through vocally/guitar wise as well. And Ed likes the folk inspired, jazz influenced technical wizard. I mean he plays the fuckin bass like a lead guitar man! And with a kickass, original tone! He is a massive Steve Harris and Iron Maiden fan.
Cal’s the laid back guy who loves fast metal and punk style stuff. Power metal seems to turn him on a fuck load, which is a totally killer influence to have running through the band as he delivers a massive sound to the band with the ingenuity to serve the songs immaculately. Absolutely awesome drummer! Keith Moon is definitely his characteristics!
Our message is simple… “Fuck normality, dare to be weird!”. Don’t be a slave to the 9-5 rat race. Be whoever your heart and your mind tell you to be, always take risks and explore! We want to provide a soundtrack to everyone’s anger man, including ours. The mixture of emotions are fucked up in this new stuff, like a Frankenstein or some shit. Really feels as if we have the freedom to do and be anything we want to nowadays. We write freedom music I guess man. That’s how I perceive this new shit anyway. From the heart straight up!”
The band seems drowned in love and hate personally… Two concepts that seem to counteract each other beautifully. It seems like a message of hope through pain, am I on the right lines?
“Yeah spot on! 2016 saw me victim to losing my beloved mother to cancer, which sparked an instant reaction in my life, the reaction was not one of the greatest times that ever beset me. My downfall became apparent immediately, not musically funny enough, just personally I was under a lot of dark influences. Ed lost 2 of his grandads which sparked his descent in a similar way. We both set ourselves to destruction mode and numbed the pain together best we could. Shaking those shackles completely, has proven difficult for me and Eddy, but we are definitely on the upward slope now. When the old line-up fell to shit along with everything else in 2016, Eddy and I had to reincarnate Rezinwolf and induct Faz and Cal into the band much to mine and Ed’s pleasure and great fortune.
Faz used to be in the Marines and still is, I think, I mean he could be called up in the next few months if a major war breaks out. So he has such a rockin’ soul and a big heart in him that Ed and I captured instantly and mutually. Our drummer Cal is studying music at University and has the talent of a king! He really is tight. I absolutely love smashing tunes out with Cal as he brings the thunder with razor sharp precision. You can see his anger from years of trying to get people to maintain a band professionally, I mean now he’s got his dream with Rezinwolf you can tell he’s got years of shit to let loose as do we all, haha. So this is shaping up to be our album of life I guess. We’re pissed off and we wanna rock really loud I suppose. My lyrics are always varied in concept depending what mood I’m in and it’s the same with Ed’s lyrics.”
What do you remember most about recording your first album “Corruption Kingdom”?
“Being skint, freezing bloody cold and camping in a field. It will always haunt my nightmares hahaha. We spent a lot of the time drunk and frustrated. But it added to the intensity, and the overall “we’re fucked off” vibe. Handling yet another death at the time of our dear friend and uncle of the band Nick “The Dogg” Payne we had a real exploration into emotion yet again, even leading to the last track on “Corruption Kingdom” ‘And Hell Followed With Him’ to be completely dedicated and devoted to them. Most memorable moment, pissed out of our skulls on cider in Darlington with our producer James Stephenson and our old guitarist Brad chugging cider whilst tracking some solos with his trousers down, he nailed it drunk… But sucked sober on that particular day, haha.”
LR: The band has seemed to take on a different identity and moved in a different direction musically… Why did you feel this was the best way to go as a band?
“We’re artists simply, you know we love to explore the realms of limitation… Pushing boundaries all the time is our key to unlocking those doors of ingenuity. Never say “we can’t”. I hate that fuckin phrase, giving up is not an option to us along with failure. We lay it out on the table, balls out or nothing. We like to see the reaction we get as well from our fans and newcomers. I’d like to think we have a song for everyone. Fuckin godlike you know.”
How come the band has had a lot of line-up changes/difficulties through the years?
“That answer, my friends, is blowing in the wind. I never understood why people say shit they obviously have no intention of achieving. Basically time-wasters is your answer to that riddle.”
The new EP is shaping up to be a classic… What was the inspiration behind the two single songs “Poison Ivy” and “Restart your Heart” and the rest of the EP?
“The whole concept of this EP so far has been a blender of inspiration… But it seems the core of the concept is sadness, anger and pain. We still always maintain that hope factor in our lyrics and music, I mean it’s like here’s the pain and here’s the solution at the same time. I like to plant questions in people’s brains to let them figure it out, as I know they’re more than capable of providing their own solution if given the right question. Mystery in music is a vital component I think. We should learn to love who we are, instead of wasting time on hating who we were. Each song is about my current situation at that time, it’s like walking in a desert barefoot and alone… There’s no one but you that can save you, no angels, no god just self-belief and the will to carry on no matter what. I understand it’s hard to carry on sometimes, but I promise if you don’t believe in yourself, believe in me… Because if I can do it, anyone can! ”
The new single “Restart your Heart” is going down a storm with mixed reactions… Personally I love it! But what was the reason behind such a drastic change and what was the concept of the song?
“It’s a ballad man, I wrote it for my late mother when she was with us still. It was a message of hope, love, salvation and freedom to her. Mostly it was a thanks to her for making me all I am, she left me a wise and blessed man for having such an intelligent and beautiful mother. I just wanted her to know I was her hero as she was mine! Until the bitter end I suffered with her every day and cared for her the same. My world shattered when she left me. Such a shame. She remains in my heart and my soul forever. She soars majestically through the spirit of Rezinwolf! ”
What is your process for laying down a new album?
“Well our process is simple really… I normally tend to come up with a lot of the music/lyrics at the moment.. And Eddy has had a big hand in that too, with a few songs with lyrics as well. Then sometimes we just collaborate in messing with each other’s tunes. We just seem to write songs, jam them, pick the strongest ones and perfect them. I like to add lyrics and titles after the music is written so I can formulate a plot and title that serve the music’s flavour. Then solos come last after Faz has the whole foundation to build a solo that fits the song’s dynamics and mood etc. Ed has a similar approach to me on the song-writing front. Cal usually takes the music and writes his own beats again with the same approach of serving the song. We believe heavily in “serve the song, not the ego”. ”
What bands are your major influences?
Mine is Metallica, Faz’s is Steel Panther, Cal’s is Gloryhammer, Ed’s is Iron Maiden.
You guys had a rough last year with the personal side of your lives and within the band. How did you find the strength to carry on? And what was the process like for the band?
“It was pretty cagy at times, especially with our previous drummer and the difference in opinions etc. Everything pissed me off personally, even down to song-writing etc. Little things would just fester inside you know?! Someone said something and if I didn’t like I’d bite, But, I’m dealing with that. Faz seemed quite cool about shit at the same time frustrated with overworking and general bullshit. Cal the same even though he joined later into the process, you could see his heart was totally in it… And instantly became a brother and amazing friend. Best line-up we’ve ever had. Probably from the years of anticipation and fighting to find what we have now. Anyway… Under the dark influences I stated earlier, life was destroying my life, and my very existence was questionable. By pushing my mind into those depths I was actually able to pull out a lot of great material. Probably some of the best I personally have ever written. Weird huh. That whole process was unfortunately fortunate I think.”
Do you have many gigs/tours approaching?
“Yes we have quite a few shows/festivals coming up! We’re planning a tour in Holland next year, which will be siiiick!!
Gigs we have played so far included:
28th April – Rezinwolf EP release party/show @ the smokehouse in Ipswich.
30th – April Thrashersaurus festival @ the B2 in Norwich.
6th May – Sarcoma festival @ Leo’s Red Lion in Gravesend.
Our upcoming shows:
25th May – @ the Ipswich Railway with A Bribe for the Ferryman.
24th June – headlining @ the Harwich Outdoor Biker festival.
7th July – Headlining the Inmates Revolt Weekend @ The Asylum in Chelmsford.
8th July – Leofest @ Leo’s Red Lion in Gravesend.
What would be your ideal festival to play and what would your dream line-up be?
“Download Festival and Wacken! Rezinwolf, Steele Panther, Gloryhammer
Iron Maiden and Metallica.”
Where can fans of Rezinwolf reach the band to buy merchandise and ask any questions etc.?
“For merch it’s Rezinwolf-official.bandcamp.com
Or check our Big Cartel page, that may vary due to stock availability.
And for any questions or queries its Www.facebook.com/rezinwolf
We’re on Instagram and Twitter as well.”
Where can the fans expect to hear/find Rezinwolf? What websites is your music on?
“You can find us on such sites as… iTunes, bandcamp, spotify, tunecore, deezer, amazon, YouTube and many more, just seek and thou shalt find my friends!””
Peace and love from all of us @ Rezinwolf.
Danny “Murf” Murphy says see ya’ll soon, Keep it heavy baby! ”
Interview by Regina Mitchell