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Funeral For a Friend guitarists Gavin Burrough and Kris Coombs-Roberts. Photos by Tom Barnes.
Funeral for a Friend’s Gavin Burrough and Kris Coombs-Roberts
Hailing from Wales, U.K., Funeral for a Friend garnered attention as a post-hardcore outfit in the early 2000s with its blend of screamo vocals, indie-rock sound palettes, and metal stylings—melodic leads, palm-muted arpeggiations, and breakdowns. Their 2003 major-label debut, Casually Dressed & Deep in Conversation, earned them a spot opening for Iron Maiden and was influential on subsequent British post-hardcore bands such as Asking Alexandria. Their latest release, Conduit, debuted at No. 34 on the U.K. charts in early 2013.
Thoughts on the State of Metal/Hardcore in 2014:
Gavin Burrough: There are some great bands out there at the moment—Comeback Kid’s and Shai Hulud’s recent records are top notch. There’s also a plethora of British bands who are pushing the boundaries of hardcore. Goodtime Boys, Landscapes … things are looking strong for the future!
Best Album of the Last Year:
Burrough: Pearl Jam’s Lightning Bolt.
Coombs-Roberts: There are too many to choose from, but some bands people should check out instead are Castles, Goodtime Boys, Landscapes, and Bleed from Within.
Best Metal/Hardcore Album of All Time:
Burrough: Drowningman’s Rock and Roll Killing Machine.
Coombs-Roberts: Pantera’s Far Beyond Driven.
Most Underrated Metal or Hardcore Guitarist:
Coombs-Roberts: Yeah, Gav.
Metal/Hardcore Cliché That Must Die:
Coombs-Roberts: Leather trousers and spiked wristbands. Need I say more?
Burrough: Awww—just let people carry on with whatever idiosyncrasies they fancy. To each their own!
Metal/Hardcore Tradition That Must Not Die:
Burrough: That would have to be the mosh. If your head doesn’t feel like it’s going to fall off the day after you’ve been to a show, then you should be ashamed of yourself!
Coombs-Roberts: Community. Within our music scene there’s no divide between the bands and the people who come to shows, who buy shirts and albums. Bands hang out and talk to the people who support them and get to say thanks for it. Bands help each other out and help promote each other by talking about each other in interviews and taking each other on tour.
People Who Don’t “Get” Metal/Hardcore These Days Should …:
Burrough: Carry on being themselves. Music’s a matter of taste. We can’t all like the same things—what a boring place the world would be if we did! I don’t even “get” metal and hardcore in its entirety, I just like bands within the genre. There’s a lot of rubbish to wade through. Just like any type of music, there are bands that are carving their own niche and then there are the imitators.
Coombs-Roberts: Get on with their lives and enjoy the things that make them happy. You can’t make someone like what they don’t, so what’s the point in trying?