Charlie McClure of NEON GUILLOTINE discusses new album, upcoming show dates

Based out of Cortland, NY, Neon Guillotine is a somewhat new addition to the Upstate metal music scene. You would never know that based on the chops shown off on tracks that are posted on their Facebook page. With the release of the band’s first full length on the horizon, only good things can come for this exciting up and comer. Recently, I had a chance to get the lowdown from drummer Charlie McClure, about the band’s future and past.

Erik:  How did the Neon Guillotine come together?

Charlie: Prior to the formation of Neon Guillotine, all members had been in bands and played together at one point or another. This particular band started with Joey and two other guys that were trying to get an old band back together and they asked Jeff and I to come try out. It was soon apparent that Joey, Jeff and I were on the  same page musically, which was not consistent with the other members of the band.  That’s when the three of us decided to go our own way. After a few months of writing we recruited Andreu on Bass and began playing shows. We then decided to bring in another guitar player to complete our sound and after a couple try-outs we found Tanner. We finished out the summer playing shows and wanted to finish the line up with a keyboard player and gained Brennan, Tanner’s roommate to fill the position.

Erik:  Always curious how bands come up with their name! How did you choose Neon Guillotine?

Charlie: While looking for some tattoo inspiration, I google image searched guillotines. There was an image of a neon one, and Neon Guillotine stuck with us. When suggested to the other members they all really liked it. The former name, Thousand Yard Stare, was replaced with Neon Guillotine from there after.

Erik:  Tell me about your home scene of Cortland? What are your thoughts on it?

Charlie: Cortland doesn’t have much of a metal scene, making it difficult to book shows. We are trying to make the genre more accessable  to ears it may not normally reach. Coming from a college town doesn’t make it easy, you are surrounded by clubs and country bars and there is no demand for metal. So it’s our goal to play as often as we can and with as many other metal bands. Luckily we have formed a good relationship with a venue right in Cortland and been able to play on a regular basis, with bands that wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to stop in our town.

Erik:  I understand that the band will be releasing it’s first full length record soon! Tell me about the recording process, and what to expect on the record?

Charlie: The recording process has been a lot of fun. It’s also been hard work but hopefully it pays off. This album has taken a little longer than expected, money being major issue but we are almost done. As far as what to expect from the album our goal was to write something that was new, technical, catchy and above all heavy. Our goal is to bring something original to the table.

Erik:  You have a big show going on in Cortland on Feb. 24th, tell me about what you have planned for the evening? And who is on the bill with you?

Charlie: Our intention is to have our full length album and new tee-shirt designs available to our fans by this date. We plan on playing a great show with some great bands including, Dead by Wednesday, Kind Snyder, Chamber Law, Sanjuro Fields and more to be announced. We are going to promote it like crazy and hope for a good turnout.

Erik: You are in a band that is somewhat new to the scene. What do you have planned over the next year as far as playing shows?

Charlie: After the release of our full length, were hoping to head out on our first self funded tour down the east coast. We would like our music to reach more people and get ourselves established in the metal scene. We plan on playing as many shows as we can, eventually booking bigger venues with bigger bands.

Erik:  If you had a choice of bands to play with from this Upstate scene, that you have not played with, who would they be?

Charlie: We would like the opportunity to play with Structured To Collapse, Thoughts in Reverse,  and Chains of Honor. We feel that our music is similar and like what they’re doing. We always enjoy playing with new bands in the genre and spreading our music. Our goal is to be heard.

Make sure to check out Neon Guillotine on Feb. 24th at The Palm Gardens in Cortland, NY. The rest of the line-up for that night includes: DEAD BY WEDNESDAY, King Snyder, Chamber Law, Every Last Breath, and Sanjuro Fields.

-Erik Jensen

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