What was the beginning point for your music career? How did it all start?
I started learning guitar and vocals in the mid 90’s at school. From there I started writing my own songs shortly after that. By about 1999 I had formed a band called Endorphin with my brother Tim on bass. We self released an Ep called Compound Problem in 2000. There were a couple of guitarists and drummers in the band before it broke up in 2001. We reformed as Zadkiel in 2002 after I finished music college. We recorded an Ep called Inverted Heaven again with a revolving line up, by 2003 My brother left the group to focus on the working world. Then I was picked up by a friend’s Indie Label (Unit 24 records) and there were some more people in the band as we released a 2nd Ep called The Ethereal Fear in 2007. An album called The Saturn Return was released in 2011. By 2014 I had reformed the band again with new people and by 2016 we were recording again.. an Ep called Transient Resurrection (yet to be released).The current line up is mostly intact from those sessions with a new drummer called Michael Bawldry.
Was there any bumps on the road? What kind of challenges did you have to deal with?
Different personnel, coming and going in the early days. Out growing our home town Mansfield.. moving to Nottingham, which is actually good thing.. at the time it was a turbulent time.
Mansfield is a very small town. With nothing much there. Most young people leave to go to a city.
I went to music college in Nottingham the early 2000’s and some of those people from there joined the band. Some of them were good musicians but others weren’t quite the right fit or were just students passing the time by and not that serious about being in a band. It is meant to be fun, However I would use the word ‘enjoyable’ which is a better fit.
You still have to take it seriously especially when you have to make the most of limited time in the studio and on stage.. By the mid 2010’s I started to meet the right people.
The current line up is mostly from then.
What is new with Zadkiel (UK) at the moment? What would you like to share with the world?
We are back together now after being separated by the Corona Virus for a little bit. Like most bands during this recent time, a hiatus was forced upon us.
Our bass player Josh’s parents moved to Ely and it was hard for him to travel from there with lack of money etc..plus Covid restrictions of course.
His brothers are here in Nottingham again now where they grew up, and we met up with Josh Marsh in November of this year for the first time in 2 years. We had been rehearsing without him but he’s back now, so we can start again in 2022 together properly. We are looking to gig again, first priority, after that we hope to record some of the new material we have been writing.
What was the most fulfilling and satisfying moment so far?
For me releasing the first album The Saturn Return in 2011.
Probably for the latest line up.. finishing the recording of Transient Resurrection EP
They love the older stuff, and the new stuff we have done together.
The track Mindslayer from The Saturn Return also got over 80,000 plays and 30,000 downloads on a site called jamendo.com
It’s good to know that there is potentially a wider audience out there for us to reach with our music.
How would you describe the music that you typically create?
Alternative Rock mixed with Modern Prog. Weird Tunings, different Time Signatures,Twin guitars, propulsive drumming, melodic anchoring bass.
Lyrically it’s deep, poetic, abstract. Deep as in like Depth Psychology.. Jungian Archetypes, shadow selves, labyrinths, demons.. and there’s conflict. Between nihilistic end of the world imagery and the beautiful stuff that comes out of being in love or connecting to wonderful things both real and imagined. I write stream of consciousness, it’s emotional but not overly so as it is very much metaphors and glimpses of other worlds, other possibilities, other ways of seeing/feeling. My vocals are very much cultivated to be my own instrument, there are influences but they are merely reference points. The sound of my voice is my own. I value authenticity in songwriting above all else.
What is your creative process like?
There are different ways, there is the group way where we jam ideas, or George Beedle our guitarist brings a chord sequence or riff, or an interesting scale, that leads to co-written material with myself and him usually, that can unfold in the room with all four of us or just with the two of us initially.
Then there is the solo songwriting, some of which becomes Zadkiel material when introduced to the band. It usually either works or it doesn’t. Sometimes I have to fight a little to get things to fit in or it goes swimmingly and the song writes itself together with the band.
It helps to have a strong foundation, so I demo lots of ideas. These are my own songs if you like. They get interpreted by the band and can change form. Some ideas never make it to the room or don’t coalesce. They can then be revisited as solo songs later.
I have just released my first solo acoustic album called LIMBIC SYSTEM on my friend’s new record label The Public House Brand. It was set up by him, Lee Heir (Prime UK Band) this year (2021) The record is available on CD from my Dan Heathcote bandcamp page.. Limbic System, by Dan Heathcote