Las Vegas Metal: Famine…the Hunger for the Pit

The boys from Vatican Falling took a break from their docking style circle jerking at practice to chat with me. Death Metal for Harambe activist Dustin and the lovely Adam Ray demonstrated their circle jerk methodology with some carrots before we got down to business.

In this 5-some of dudes you have some amazing guitar work by Dustin Allen & Marc Cula. Ridiculously powerful, wide-ranged scream vocals by Adam Ray. And then the heartbeat of the band, Thomas Palmer on the Bass and Nick Robinson on the drums. Each of these hardcore bad-asses brings something to the table in perfect synchronized headbanging and guitar riffs that are every metal-heads wet dream. They released their first full length album Famine last year.

The inspiration that lead them here…



Marc digs those bands like The Black Dahlia Murder, Dark Funeral and System of a Down that play whatever they think is cool instead of trying to play inside of that mainstream box. Out of those three, System of a Down claims the prize for getting him started on the guitar.


Nick wouldn’t tell me why, but apparently Ashely Simpson20180113_010948got him into metal. Maybe it was her ability to suck out a man’s soul while simultaneously ripping out their heart and eating it like an apple. Real talk though, Tool and Mudvayne back in the day got Nick into metal. When he was younger his dad played and had a studio. Bored middle schooler that he was, he started messing with the drums for shits and giggles. It just kind of stuck with him since then.

20180215_184521Dustin has some well-rounded influences. Getting his creative energy from multiple genre sources. When he was growing up he used to listen to The Beatles during long trips with his family. He would torture them by singing along with the songs while wearing his headphones. And then he got into some other (at the time) low-key punk bands like AFI, The Used, and Sum 41. Low key bands transitioned into commercial punk which got him to pick up the guitar. Stevie Ray Vaughan’s voice and guitar skills had him in awe. We also have some Lil Chrome, Project Pat, Three 6 Mafia and A Perfect Circle thrown in the mix of inspiration and influence.

Adam’s first CD was a Ja Rule album that he bought for himself when he was 11. Back then he listened to what everyone else was listening to at school. At 14 he turned more towards20180215_183826.jpgSum 41 and Rufio and eventually started listening to Atreyu & As I Lay Dying. Then the album from Job for a Cowboy hit is ears and changed his world.  He wanted that harder, rougher music and turned to bands like As Blood Runs Black and The Black Dahlia Murder. He fell in love with lady metal so much that he decided to make his own music. Other influences that indirectly play into his style are Chicago, Air Supply and of course Queen with the beloved Freddy Mercury. Adam maintains a pretty wide pallet of music. Everything from country music to Rich Chigga, Spark Master Tape and the mysterious Juicy J.

Tom grew up listening to a lot of 80’s and 90’s country. Influenced by his parents tastes, 20180215_184738he started off really into Garth Brooks, Kenny Chesney, Randy Travis, Tim McGraw, Reba & The Judds. When he was a toddler he could be seen jamming out on a mickey mouse guitar to George Straight. His older sister took him under her wing and exposed him to more punk and hard rock. Introducing him to bands like Atreyu and going heavier and heavier from there. Still, old country is what pushed him into wanting to play music and has a permanent place on his personal playlist.

Forming the band…

Their story of creation is like many other bands. For the most part they knew each other from other bands and projects. Dustin had just wrapped up working with Revolve and wanted to start a solo project. After posting some pre-pro content on Instagram, him and Adam started messaging back and forth and decided to add some vocals to the mix. From there they slowly started to bring Tom & Nick into the fold. The wild card of this glorious group of dudes is Marc. They say they found him on street corner fighting crime in his birthday suite with only a guitar on his backside to fend off his foes. They thought he was bad ass so they let him join the cool kids club too.


They really stay true to their style. Holding themselves to extremely high standards when putting in studio time. There are times they might be working on 25+ songs and only a small handful make the cut. It’s tedious and takes some massive dedication but ends up being totally worth it in the end with some amazing music. If you haven’t heard their stuff, you don’t know what you are missing. All original music with some 40’s and 50’s Swing Jazz and blues music in their back tracks mixed with deathcore, black and speed metal. Giving off that Rob Zombie inspired eerie sound that they aim for.

Their audience is the serious hardcore metalheads who like music that hits heavy, hard and fast. When I say fast, Midnight Eyes alone is sitting at 250 bpm give or take. Most music across genres ranges between Andante Moderato 90 bpm and –  Presto 180 bpm and rarely crosses the Prestissimo 200+ bpm threshold. They aren’t trying to appeal to teeny-boppers and soccer moms who can’t hang. That’s what Miley Cyrus is for…go listen to her if you need mainstream poppy feel good music with no depth.


Give them a listen…

Mechanically Tyrannical:  One of their favorite songs to perform live and quite possibly 28828992_10157200927712892_1221396189_nmy favorite to listen to. It was written some time ago, inspired by a Line 6 DL4 delay petal Dustin had. Those damn petals, Oh the tyranny in which the oppress our much-loved guitarists.  At first it was an intro thing that they were just messing around with, but it turned into something super heavy that slammed and was easy to play live.

Apocalypse Filth: It’s about Apocalypse from the X-Men … TOTAL NERD ALERT ..if you listen to the lyrics they are pretty close to a speech he gives.

The Sacrifice: This song was made with the intent of going as evil as possible. The song is about an exorcism. While putting together the song some freaky shit kept going down. At one point they thought they were channeling the rain gods since the weather would turn weird with rain, hails storms and wind whenever they worked on the track. Even when they interview with a small-time blogger they the skies become overcast and sprinkle just a little bit.

Masquerade: NEW MUSIC!!!! Releases this Friday 3/16/2018 



Stories from the road …Wild Nights in San Diego:

The boys took a trip down to San Diego to play a show. Between Dustin’s Jeep getting tagged, a couple driving down from Oregon on their honeymoon to see them play and Adam’s hatred of sand in his shoes; They had some fun stories from their trip to share.

Caution! Beware of Sleep Walkers: Adam and Tom were sharing a bed in one of the 13-96adjoined rooms they had booked for their stay. Adam proceeds to wake up Tom, spazzing out because of a shadowy figure peeking through the glass sliding door of their room. Tom opens the glass door and peaks out to see who the fuck it is standing outside their room like a creep. It’s their friend Chris standing there grunting and sleep walking the night away. Hours later …. Adam wakes up to Chris sleep walking again but this time he has managed to make his way to the bed and is standing over Adam (poor guy).

 I’m so tired of making your sandwich!  While drinking some brews at the hotel bar they no-you-make-me-a-sandwichended up crashing a Feminist Party. Every time a chick would come into the bar they would look Nick and Tom up and down as they sat against one of the walls. Chicks with trendy butch haircuts and high cut tops started to show up in mass. So many straight bangs in one room.  There was one chick that sat next to them wrapped in a blanket that was decorated with very detailed vaginas.

They were asked by what appeared to be an event 23e3b6196ace586fcdacc8d8d9d84f89--detroit-sandwichorganizer if they could move when it came time for them to have their panel sit in those seats. And then the ukulele came out and the song starting with “I’m so tired of making your sandwich…” started. The boys were already trashed. Tom had to exit the building due to the unstoppable urge to burst out into a laughter infused hysteria. One can only imagine the level of awkward that was.


You can check out more of their adventures and music via their Official Website,  Facebook, YouTube , Spotify and IG via @vaticanfalling. That’s the end of this hardcore dance party. Thanks raging in the pit.


#SupportLocalBands #ButDontBeADick #Metal #Metalhead #MakeMetalThriveAgain #ThrashOrDie #ShredIt #VaticanFalling

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