Interview: Jeramie Kling (The Absence, Necromancing the Stone)

kling7The Absence and Necromancing the Stone are two incredible bands who masterfully play classic melodic death metal and power metal, respectively. Both of these bands seem to fly uncomfortably under the radar and fans of both genres who don’t listen to them, should really get their acts together.

Now, continuing our recent trend of larger scale interviews, I got the chance to chat with Jeramie Kling, drummer of both The Absence and Necromancing the Stone, sound engineer, live sound tech and travel aficionado.

Mike Marlinski: Before the “Kling Chronicles” began, you had to start somewhere. How old were you when you picked up the drums and what was your first kit?

Jeramie Kling: Well….. My dad put a pair of sticks in my hands at a very young age…….2! I used to jam with my dad and older brother all the time. I played my first “show” when I was in fourth grade. I brought my pearl export drum set to school for the school play/talent show. I performed alone with a backing track. Three shows that day, one in the morning, one in the afternoon and one at night for the parents!

MM: Who were your big influences growing up, musically?

JK: My dad, my brother, the drummer for Faith No More, Mike Bordin, and Lars from Metallica, of course. I was also a big fan of Mikkey Dee (The Scorpions 2016), even though I didn’t know his name.

MM: The Absence is one of the few bands still carrying the torch for classic melodic death metal. How’d the band get started and what was the initial plan? Also, who came up with the name and was there a story behind it?

JK: It really took flight when Pete and I started jamming and writing melodic death metal. We jammed a few times with the dudes in The Absence (at that time, they were playing really long winded progressive metal) and it didn’t really work out. After awhile, The Absence lost their drummer and we agreed to all blend and mesh our projects together. We dug the band name and we decided to keep it, even though all of the original music was completely scrapped and we started over.

MM: Which is your favorite Absence record and why?

JK: I am a big fan of Riders of the Plague!!! It’s aggressive, yet beautiful…… Although this new album is going to for sure be my favorite yet. It’s fucking CRUSHING!!!!

MM: After “Oceans” came out, a lot of people thought The Absence was done. How’d you go about jamming again and how’d it feel getting back to it?

JK: Yeah, it certainly felt that way, didn’t it? Well, after Pat quit, it really got the gears moving again. He no longer had an interest in death metal or metal in general for that matter. So, Taylor locked himself in a room and started writing his ass off!!! We jammed and then started the recording process which has been difficult because all of us are busy elsewhere with touring and crewing etc. etc.

MM: You said the new Absence single comes out January 18. What can fans expect from the new album? Also, is there any other info you’re allowed to disclose about the new album and if so, what?

JK: Straight Fire!!!! This will be our most aggressive effort to date. Possibly our most melodic as well. The lyrical content is as intense as a JRR Tolkien Book!

MM: You’re also James Malone’s (Arsis) backbone in Necromancing the Stone. How’d you end up in that band and what’s it been like?

JK: I am! James is a phenomenal writer and guitar player. There was a little lull with The Absence and I had reached out to James to see if he wanted to jam, simply because I’m a big fan of his. He had already been talking with Justin and John who had already formed up Necromancing. So, we all collaborated and realized that we loved what we had in front of us. The rest is kind of history. We shopped to some labels and we were picked up by Metal Blade records. I really love playing this band’s music live, it’s fucking fun and killer.

MM: How’d you get into sound production and what kind of tech do you prefer? Also, what kind of advice can you give to new sound guys/girls?

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JK: I actually fell into it honestly. I first did a tour drum teching for Hypocrisy and Scar Symmetry. I had never crewed before, only for myself. It proved to be a fun gig and I just kinda stuck with it. Over the years I started applying my studio knowledge and BAM!!! A career was born. The best tip I could offer is simply stick with it (smiles). And know your role in the whole thing. Don’t try to be a band member. You’re crew…plain and simple.

MM: You get around, so you must have some crazy stories. I’ve seen you on dozens of tours in several different countries on social media as both a sound guy and drummer, so can you outline your 3 top road experiences?

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JK:

  1. The last tour I did (Venom/Goatwhore), I saw a woman sleeping while standing up! lol! I was really impressed!
  2. That same tour I also got to go on Chuck Billy’s boat and go get breakfast!!!! That was pretty sweet!
  3. One Absence tour, we had our drive shaft fall off our RV and stranded us in Grand Island, Nebraska for 5 days!!!! It was horrible…we spent most of our time at the mall that had like 13 stores in it (laughs). Bummer!

MM: What’s your position on how the internet has effected the music industry?

JK: It totally killed it. 100%. It’s equal parts good and bad in my opinion. Some aspects needed to die while others did not need to die.

MM: Finally, can you offer any info as to future touring plans for both The Absence and Necromancing? We need you back in Buffalo.

JK: Very soon for The Absence. We are talking April. Necro is on a hold due to The Absence and Arsis both putting out records this year.

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We’ll be anxiously awaiting both albums, as well as the new one from At the Gates, which was just recently wrapped up in the studio and is on to the mixing/mastering phase! Stay tuned for more of everything we do. Thanks for reading!

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