Like many Download Festival attendees, the members of South London/Reading quintet Brutai have dreamt of stepping onto a stage at Donington Park. Now after years of playing shows on the underground circuit, honing their brand melodic technical metal, they’re about to make their Download debut.
The past few months have been eventful for Brutai. Their spot on the Dogtooth stage sees them arrive at the festival with plenty of momentum; from releasing their debut album, ‘Born’, late last year, to touring with Devil You Know this past January, to being nominated for a Golden God award.
The aforementioned ‘Born’ is a multifaceted record taking in prog and tech metal elements, alongside soaring harmonies, stabbing riffs and dynamic drums. The end result is a well-crafted, impressive set of alt-metal songs.
As they prepare to jump over the barrier and play Download for the first time, we spoke to vocalist/guitarist Felix Lawrie about the band’s activity in recent months, past Download experiences and more.
AH: It seems Download is the climax of a busy and exciting period for you guys. How have you found the last few months since the release of ‘Born’ last November?
It’s been pretty mad really. Mad in the best possible way. We’ve toured, we’ve got our name out there, been nominated for a [Metal Hammer] Golden God Award, we’re playing bigger festivals and the journey is on an unpredictable trajectory. It’s more than anticipated but we’re thrilled, it makes us excited for the future and what music we’ll be writing for album no.2.
AH: This is your first time playing Download, but have you guys attended the festival in the past? What are your memories from previous years?
Alex (Lorimer – keys/vocals), Henry (Ryan – guitarist) and I have been probably about five or six times, being school friends we always went up together when we were younger. I remember as soon as Alex got his drivers licence one of the first things we did was plan a road trip to Download.
My favorite story of mine is attending my first ever Download Festival as a young teenager with my big brother and a couple of his friends looking after us. Within seconds of arriving and watching our first band there – I believe it was American Head Charge, and our friend within seconds started a mosh-pit and had a load of people throw him around and I remember thinking ‘He’s not messing about!’ when in fact realizing a few seconds later that he had in fact not started a mosh-pit. In fact, he’d actually passed out due to the heat and actually fell forward and the crowd of people started to push him around. Luckily no one was seriously hurt but it was definitely a memorable way to start my first Download outing.
AH: You’re playing on the Dogtooth stage. The fourth stage has a history of hosting bands before they’ve gone on to bigger things. How big of an opportunity is playing Download for a band in Brutai’s position?
It’s probably the biggest opportunity really. To be given a slot like this for a band who have only just released their first album is probably the biggest accolade you could give an up and coming metal band! We’re just completely grateful for the chance to do so and hope to reward Download, the festival-goers and our fans with our best performance as this festival deserves.
AH: Your set is early on Sunday. How do you plan on waking up tired, probably hungover, festival-goers?
I think the best way to go about it would be to play our heaviest set! Which is what we’re planning on! We want people to headbang away their hangovers and set a standard for the rest of the day!
AH: Will you be making a weekend out of it? If so, who will you be watching?
We’ll definitely be making a weekend of it for sure! It’ll be a unique experience attending as an artist but not a fan but we’ll still be there as fans also. Some of our favorite bands are playing and we’ll be sure to catch as many of them as possible. Stand out, must-see bands for me personally though would have to be System Of A Down, Mastodon, Northlane, Devin Townsend and Opeth!
’Born’ by Brutai is out now on Transcend Music.
Brutai will be Dogtooth Stage at Download Festival on Sunday, June 11th.
Download Festival 2017 takes place at Donington Park from June 9th to 11th.
Tickets can be purchased here.
View more of Already Heard’s coverage from Download Festival 2017 here.