it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s ROCK N’ ROLL…and we love it
It’s always wonderful to catch up with my man Stevil. We had a great chat and caught up on all of the work Stevil has bee doing to keep the music industry alive! Take a listen and get caught up on the world of Stevil Helmer:
Thanks Stevil, always a pleasure!
it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s ROCK N’ ROLL!!!
CP – This is a tricky question. I’ll just tell the story of my experience: I was in a cover band, having some fun and looking for a project that I wanted to put all of my attention toward, when I met Charles. He had talked to me about getting together and jamming sometime. I was like, “yeah cool, we will do that sometime”. Not really giving it a lot of thought. Some time went by and again, he asked me to come jam with him and this guy that’s playing guitar with him. At this time, I had the cover band thing, I was sitting in for some friends for a few weeks and had a few other offers that I wasn’t really impressed with, so I said, What the hell, it can’t hurt to just go jam. So, we got out there and really hit it off. Charles had a style about his playing that I really could relate too. After a while we had some songs together and then Joe came in the picture and really held the bass down like a pro. We added another member and called ourselves THRAWL. (I prefer to not mention the other members names) We went at it for about a year or so, and came to the conclusion that we just didn’t like the direction a few of the guys were taking it, so we decided to call it. We took a break for a while and then Charles, Joe and myself decided we would put something together that was more of what we were looking for. We wrote some stuff and tried out some people. Some of the local “ heroes” so to speak. nothing was really catching. Well, Cat and I went to high school together, and got back in touch through Facebook. We hung out and caught up with how life has been and so on… Well, one night we went to a karaoke bar and she sang a few songs and I was like, wow, this girl really has a great voice. Then she went up and did “Enter Sandman” by Metallica. I was like, “Holy shit, did I just hear that coming from this little girl???” Long story short, we talked about it and got her to come out and give it a try. Best thing that could have happened to all of us. After playing for over a year, we wanted to get some more going on in the mix. We wanted a lead guitar player. You would think, those are everywhere, but no, not if your serious about what you’re looking for. About 8 or 9 months into looking, we brought Brandon in for a try at it. This guy learned our songs in a short time and was playing them as if he had been there the whole time, with solos and all. This is a guy with some amazing skills. The shoe fit so we are wearing it proudly. And that’s my take on how it all came together.
CAT – I had always been in cover bands, seemed to get stereotyped and talked into singing chick songs and put in a certain category, it always irked me, because inside, I wanted to be wailing something from Metallica or even Pantera… When this opportunity arose to front-woman a metal band, and write my own lyrics, you can bet, it was a HUGE release. FINALLY I can do what I want and sing how I wanna sing it and not be compared to the way the ‘original’ band did it, as seems always the case of cover bands.
CP – I was putting on records for my dad and his friends at like 5 and 6 years old, that were Black Sabbath, Ted Nugent, Judas Priest, Rainbow, Led Zeppelin, and all kinds of bands in that era. Those bands have been what drove me to being a musician. I have much respect and love for other types of music, but as far as influential, it’s always been the metal world for me.
CP – Usually Charles will write a structure of some guitar riffs and present them to the band. From there we analyze, dissect, and rearrange as we feel things need to go, everyone spices up their parts, and we call it a song.
BP – I haven’t gotten together and wrote any songs with them yet when Charles was teaching me the songs if I found a spot to put a solo and were it felt right i wrote it in that spot.
the Hellion: What was the driving force that guided you towards performing music?
CP – Back when I was a kid, me and my best friend at the time would act out songs we were listening to. He may be using the toy box to act like the drummer and I have a tee-ball stand set up to sing in while using a plastic bat to play air guitar, and vice versa. This was the beginning for me. The desire and drive had been planted like a seed.
CAT – Growing up I’d CRANK up the house stereo and sing at the top of my lungs, no one was ever around, I just knew I loved it….:) My dad was right, I should have learned to play the guitar but, I always figure one day I will, ‘still waiting to start, lol’ Once I had sung in front of people and had that rush of adrenaline, I knew that is what I wanted to do… Performing live is the most amazing thing for me, the time stands still, I get to be who I truly am, connected with the deepest part of myself.
CP – Ahhh, the internet…… Well, things have made a drastic turn since the internet has become such a common tool. From my experiences, it has hurt the industry in it’s old school ways of doing things to the point, it really doesn’t work that way anymore. But, it has helped in a way that you can cover way more ground, hit a much larger group, in an unrealistic short time and do it for much less than you could have in the early 90‘s and before. I see it still molding into what the next big thing will be.
CAT – Worst part is getting ripped off and artists music stolen, on a positive note, it can be the most vital and useful tool to be heard, seen and build a fan base.
CP – I’ve never really been star struck, so to speak. We are all people who put our shoes on one foot at a time. But I will say, being in the same room with a super star is a special thing. I guess I’d have to say, one of my previous bands opening for Prong in Southern California, and watching them watching us, was an overwhelming feeling. I listened to them way back and then decades later there’s Tommy Victor in front of me, listening and watching my band. It was an amazing moment.
CAT – Guess it depends on if you mean open up for or if you mean, play in a band with…. Of course I’d love to open for Lamb of God, but any metal band that has earned my respect by loving what they do, humble, also honestly open about “YEAH – we made to the big show, and how thankful we are” says a lot for me, doesn’t matter how big a band is, if the members are dicks, I won’t have an interest in them any longer…
CP – OPD is a mixture of many influences and offers a style that has been morphed from all these influences to give the listener something that you don’t hear everyday, and for sure don’t see everyday. Something old, yet brand new fresh at the same time.
BP – OPD has a unique style to me. this band can play a show with tons of other bands from: trash metal to death metal n even progressive metal and still fit the bill. it’s a mixture of brutal and melodic songs lots of catchy riff and lyrics you can bang your head and get chills at the same time. tons of talent and so many influences.
CP – We’d like to thank Billy Melancon, at Dark HouseStudios, Steve Helmer at Helmer Management, Richard Hudson of HyperMedia Group, James Hoskins of Doghouse Entertainment, ALL of the Knights Of Thor for their big support, our fellow band members for their commitment and patience, and most importantly, every single fan that has brought themselves to be counted as a fan of ours, You all are why we do this to begin with. Much love and thanks, and see ya soon.
CAT – We’d like to thank Billy Melancon, at Dark House studios, Steve Helmer at Helmer Management, Richard Hudson of HyperMedia Group, James Hoskins of Doghouse Entertainment, ALL of the Knights Of Thor for their big support, My band members for their commitment and patience, and most importantly, every single fan that has brought themselves to be counted as a fan of ours, You all are why we do this to begin with. Thanks to all the bands who have shared the stage with OPD – always a great time, much love and thanks.
CAT – Hard to put into words what this band, and our music means to me, we are all friends, and I couldn’t imagine playing without any of them…They are my support system and this band is my outlet for pent-up energy..
CP – Each individual that hears us or comes to see a show, matters, we hope our music can touch upon the emotion and have some relevance for a fan about something going on in his or her life… We are all united in the love of music, we each fight our own battle and each of us matter. Music is how we connect; with those most like us.
Sometimes you run into people who have the same mindset as you do, and this is very cool. Stevil Helmer happens to be one of these people. I had the great fortune today to speak at length with Stevil. I then did a fifteen minute interview with Stevil. This is a guy who GETS the music industry of today. His understanding and knowledge of the industry is a valuable asset to those seeking to be a part of it. Enjoy the interview and be sure to check out Stevil’s sites at the links shown above. Check out the bands he works with: Chemical Tree ( https://www.facebook.com/chemical.tree?fref=ts), and Doomdogs ( https://www.facebook.com/pages/Doomdogs/159975830714334) Here is the interview link: (apologies for the end of the interview, phones were being tempermental, but hey, that’s Rock N’ Roll)