Forbidden song commentary

Reactivated San Francisco Bay Area thrashers Forbidden continue their work at Sonic Room/Audio Voyage Studios in Livermore, California recording their fifth studio album, Omega Wave.


Guitarist Steve Smyth checks in with the following update: "We began Day 3 going straight back into Adapt Or Die, finishing up [the] layering and got done a few hours in. I decided to move into a track called Swine next. Swine is a little different from the rest of the tracks to me, a little more on the ‘doomy' side of things, but it has more than a few surprises in there. I'm not going to give away too much here, you'll have to wait for it.

Swine has some cool odd-time stuff at the intro, Forbidden style, and well-arranged by Craig Locicero and Mark Hernandez. I sort of created the intro riff for this song by accident. Craig and I were jamming on some of the other songs one day, and I just happened to be noodling on something, not really thinking about anything, and he looked at me, and said ‘What's that?. Play that again.' I played it again, and we turned this from something completely unconscious on my part into the intro of the song pretty quickly. Mark and Craig brought some odd-time and arrangement ideas into it from there, and the rest of the song came right into it. Awesome. I'm a huge fan of things happening like that. The riff I'm talking about has the influence of Randy Rhoads and Black Sabbath in it, no doubt from my years of playing a lot of that stuff in my Ozzy/Sabbath tribute Sweet Leaf. A very dark, eerie-sounding (I hope) arpeggiated pattern that has a moving bass line underneath it as well.

Back to tracking: we started from here, and got the flow going, and moved on through the track, noting certain places where I would put some layered stuff in later, as I wanted to bring out the eerie arpeggio section as much as possible.

Once this was done, I wanted to move into another song I had a bit more of a hand in writing as well, a song called Behind The Mask. This one starts off heavy and moody, and does not let up for a long time. Very heavy pounding metal with a lot of peaks and valleys, as well as a killer chorus that Craig came up with for this one, which absolutely is heavy as hell, and jumps around the beat; a little tricky, but grooves like a mofo.

Again, I don't want to give away the farm on this one, but there's some really cool stuff I came up with in the bridge that I hope you'll all dig on; lots of melody in this section, and not the type of instrument or style I think was ever heard on a Forbidden record, but rest assured, I kept it heavy. We ended the day with this track, and moved into the next day from there... I was exhausted, but stoked as fuck that I got both of these tunes happily where I wanted them."