Among The Moose is an interview-ish series where I ask some questions of the extremely good bands on this label and share their answers with you. Iōhannēs was the second band to have a release on SMR, but was the first to put their hand up and jump on board with this absolute clown shit that I thought was a good idea. A phenomenal musician and vocalist with some absolute bangers under their belt, including one of my favourite album’s of 2022: Jacob’s Ladder. Here are my questions and their answers. Enjoy.

x. Feelings about the current state of metal, particularly relating to the huge nazi problem, abuser problem, and overall toxic bullshit?
I think it’s a vast shame that these problems still plague the scene and it’s up to all of us to fight against any form of bigotry and toxicity we see. Metal is full of shitty people, but it’s also full of really cool and good people, so we should boost them and crush the rest.

1.  Name , Age , Location , Gender Identity 
 Iōhannēs (hate sharing my actual name), 22, North Carolina USA
Non-Binary (Agender/Any Pronouns)

2. Your band(s) , project(s) both in and out of the moose 
Iōhannēs, a solo musical project

3. When did you start? 
Started playing guitar in 2015, started recording in 2017, became Iōhannēs in 2020

4. Why the genre(s) that you chose?
 I don’t really stick to any specific genre, but I’m into extreme music so naturally I gravitate towards black metal and death metal the most. I just like riffs and heaviness, really, but also atmosphere and interesting composition. I’m a fan of pushing boundaries and hearing things I’ve never quite heard before.

4 a.) Extreme music seems to encapsulate a whole lot of sub genres, what is it about the genre that is so appealing, and what do you think makes it so diverse?
 I think the breadth of difference in human experience leads to many forms of expression, and through extreme metal I find a release and an exploration of the more troublesome aspects of living. There are bands of pure chaos and bands of pure beauty, and some bands that play across that spectrum. Everyone has a different way of presenting themselves and their ideas musically. There’s something there for everyone to latch onto in one way or another.

5. 5 most influential bands/albums 
 Ocean Machine – Devin Townsend / Bath – maudlin of the Well / Colors – Between The Buried And Me / Disintegration – The Cure / One Hour By The Concrete Lake – Pain of Salvation

6. What is the point of music anyways? 
The point of music is the freedom to explore concepts and emotions in a way that is constructive and healing. It’s also just fun to do, so why not?

6 a.) How has music helped you heal throughout your life? If you’re comfortable sharing.
Music has always been an important part of my life and several of my releases in the past were created with the intention of healing and letting go of negative emotion. Without music I don’t think I could continue living in a healthier state of mind.

7. Why Syrup Moose Records?
I’d never had luck with labels before and generally dislike labels anyway, but Syrup Moose seemed like a cool idea even if it went nowhere. Very happy to have been a part of it’s birth and excited to see where it goes in the future!

8. What’s next for you?
Deciding what’s next is hard when you’re as mood-driven as me. My current plan is another concept record that hopefully comes to fruition in a better way than previous attempts.

9. What are you currently listening to?
Opeth has been on heavy rotation as of late, but I’ve also discovered Witherscape recently and that has been a fun and new experience to explore.

10. One hot take 
 I’m not one for hot takes to be honest. Sorry, no answer here.

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