Meet Scott Buchanan from Vancouver’s Unleash The Archers!
Scott, thanks for sitting down with Metal Drumming Mastery! Tell us a little about yourself and Unleash The Archers- How long have you been playing?
Cumulatively like 12-ish, but I played when I was younger and quit for a while then picked it back up in 2005 or so.
Did you take lessons? How long?
I did in the first few years, probably for like 3 or 4 years but I was a pretty bad student and I’ll go as far as to say I did not get much out of the experience, haha.
How much do you practice every day/week?
That definitely depends on whats happening with the band. If we are writing an album then I usually practice a couple hours everyday, plus the stuff we do with the band. If we are just in show/tour mode I usually just count band rehearsal time as my practice time and that’s about 3-4 nights a week, 2-3 hours a night.
Who is/are your fav/most influential drummer(s)?
1. Matt Kuykendall (HMR/Price of Existence/Awaken the Dreamers era All Shall Perish drummer) Awaken The Dreamers is probably one of the most beautifully/brilliantly written albums, drum wise, in the history of metal.
2. Chuck Biscuits (88-92 era Danzig)
3. Lech (As Blood Runs Black)
How has YouTube affected how you promote yourself as a drummer?
Ummm, not too much ’cause I am too lazy to make any sort of cover or tutorial videos, haha, but it’s definitely there if you are ambitious. On our last tour I was chatting with J-Per from Derelict and his heel-toe video video has over 50k hits. That’s nuts! Like the promo for him and for the band is huge with something like that.
Any tips for aspiring drummers on how you developed some of your technique for double kick speed and doing blast beats?
I use heel toe almost exclusively for any of my kick patterns that aren’t super slow so I don’t have much single stroke advice. In regards to heel-toe I would just say its like anything, build the proper foundations cause all the stuff you are going to do at higher speeds and with more complex rhythm patterns is going demand complete competence in those basic techniques. ie. slow and proper is better then fast and sloppy…. for both you and the person who has to listen to you haha.
What kind of pedals do you use?
Axis Longboards in the double pedal formation with ekits. They are super old and pretty much every aspect of them is loose. I’ve probably put a million strokes through them, but they still get the job done.
AHEAD 7A’s. A lot of people hate on these sticks and I get a little grief from people, but I have seriously done the cost/benefit analysis and they are so much given my average stick consumption. It sucks to have to think of cost over the perfect stick but that is the reality of not having a stick sponsorship.
What is currently on your iPod and constantly playing?
I just got the new Kobra and the Lotus album and there are a few pretty killer tracks on there. Other than that I am still listening to Woods 5 pretty hard.
What is the best way to pass time on the road?
Sleeping trumps all, it’s like a fast forward button for the horrible-ness that is van life. Other than that, I usually go through a few seasons of shows on my iPod. I watched all of Deadwood and Dollhouse last tour. I’d recommend both.
Favorite TV Show?
Favorite movie you’ve recently seen?
Last movie that I saw and was like “whoa that was pretty killer” was In Time. The new Batman was pretty good too, but not as awesome as I wanted it to be.
Favorite book or comic you’re currently reading?
Hyperion Series by Dan Simmons. I’m almost done Endymion. This series is pretty bad-ass.
Favorite spot to eat on the road?
Haha, we eat such shitty bad food on the road its almost embarrassing to type this. Probably Burger King. Waffle House was pretty awesome in the US., and Oxxo in Mexico is the ticket.
iPhone, Android or Blackberry and why?
iPhone, cause everyone else has one… who wants to be different?
Tell us about everything that is currently going on with Unleash The Archers at the moment…
Just got back from our North American Tour (Canada, USA, Mexico)and so we are sort of chilling right now. I think the loose plan is sit down and really take our time writing this next album… like the whole winter sort of thing.
UTA’s new EP “Defy The Skies” sounds great! Did you have a overall goal for how you wanted the release to sound? What about in comparison to “Demons Of The AstroWaste”?
Yeah, this last EP was all about writing the most commercial, poppy-type music we could within reason and the confines of the “power metal” genre. We toned everything back in terms of musicianship and structure and just tried to produce a really catchy album and see if we were happy playing that type of music and if the fans were happy listening to that. Turns out that wasn’t quite for us, so the next full length will be written with that in mind. Probably more of a serious, darker sound on the next album… tough to say though as we have yet to write anything for it.
Tell us about your recent tour of North America. How did it go, highlights, low points?
Haha, we had a lot of trouble with the USA, so I’d say that was a low point in general. We just didn’t get the turnouts or the reactions that we expected down there so it was pretty tough. There were some incredible fans and some great experiences, don’t get me wrong, but in general it was just difficult to tour through. Mexico on the other hand was absolutely phenomenal and those were probably some of the best shows the band has ever played. Yeah, the entirety of Mexico was the highlight for sure.
Check out the Unleash The Archers website!