Who are the members of Boneyard?
Pamtera- vocals/ guitar, Dennis Cooke- bass, Jeff Cunningham- drums
How & When did Boneyard form?
I (Pamtera) wanted to put together a hard rock cover project back in 2015. Some of my previous projects have included drummer Jeff Cunningham, so he was the first to join. We performed in local clubs for a year before new bass player Dennis auditioned in 2016. The following year, we decided to take the band in a new direction- all original.
Where was the first place Boneyard performed?
A brand new Edmonton venue, at the time, called The Draft. It was a big, beautiful venue that previously featured country music.
What inspired each of you to start music?
When I was 15 my high school boyfriend played guitar. I wanted to learn so badly so he taught me some chords and eventually gave me his guitar, which I still have. Jeff's uncle was a rock drummer, and drum teacher, so he was exposed to live music early on. Dennis' musical seed was planted when he first heard Ozzy's Diary of a Madman. Collectively, I think we all wanted to emulate our musical heroes.
What’s the story behind the new song?
The new single, Fates Warning, was our first attempt at a longer epic song with different passages and dynamics. What's really cool, is that since it's release, a lot of fans have mentioned how the lyrics really reflect what's happening in the world today, with Covid, etc. I produced a video for the song as well. It's a really cool hybrid lyric, and performance, video. Watch it here:
What inspired you to put together new music?
Even when we were doing cover songs, Dennis would always bring new riffs to rehearsals. Eventually, the allure of playing 3 sets of covers per night, with seemingly decreasing performance payments, was quickly wearing off. We decided to focus on writing enough songs for an album. Dennis was always the driving force, mainly because it was his first original project. In May of 2019, we entered producer/ engineer Cam Macleod’s [ of White Wolf fame] Wolfs Den studio in Edmonton and began recording our debut album. After an extended COVID-19 pause, we returned to complete the project in August of 2020. Eleven tracks were then sent to be mastered by Maor Appelbaum (Halford, Armored Saint, Anvil) in Los Angeles, USA. What emerged is our debut album “Oathbreaker”, released on October 24, 2020 on CD, digitally and on vinyl. The first single, “Fates Warning,” dropped on October 17, 2020, and is available on most digital platforms.
Will you be touring to support the new album? If so, when?
For now, on a small scale. As with most bands, COVID-19 has really put a damper on their touring plans. For now, all we can do is play some local shows. Hopefully, we can get going in the new year once the local Covid restrictions have been lifted.
What is your song writing process?
Riffs and melodies can pop into our heads at any time, or simply by jamming. From there, we add, and arrange, other riffs/ parts that compliment the first. Lyrics are sometimes inspired by the feel of that particular song idea. Otherwise, Pamtera will have some pre-written, and it's just a matter of matching them up to something appropriate. Ideally, we like to test a new song in a live show to see if anything needs tweaking.
What’s your first thoughts when you get up on stage?
After this Covid shit, we can't get on a stage fast enough to kick some ass! But usually it's things like, Do I have my water? Is my guitar in tune?
Where was the first venue you played?
My first venue was a rock club here in Edmonton called the Saxony, we were doing a rock showcase, our original project was called Strawbridge, our bass player broke a string and we had to borrow one from the next band. It was dead air and I was horrified!
What is your most memorable moment from any live performances?
On the Monsters of Rock Cruise Cruiser Jam. I got to play guitar on AC/DC's Walk All Over You with Jeff Keith from Tesla. I also sang Budgie/ Metallica's Breadfan with Johnny Fenton (Killer Dwarfs) and Green Manalishi with Roxy Petrucci (Vixen).
Describe the atmosphere when you’re performing
Every venue and show has a different atmosphere. We just try to provide a high energy set, with our original songs played faithfully to the album versions. We also like to inject a couple of classic metal covers into the set.
What band would you like to perform with the most?
Annihilator. I'd really like to meet Jeff Waters and ask him a zillion questions.
Will you be touring in the United Kingdom any time soon?
Unfortunately with Covid, not at this time. For now, we'd like to expose the UK, and other countries to our album.
Please visit our website for more info: www.boneyardrocks.ca