Interview: is the solo project of self-taught, multi-instrumentalist Howard King. Focused on originality and bringing his own uniqueness to the genre, offers up a fresh take on doom metal with his debut EP, hanc aeternum, infinitum nihil 23.23.

I had the chance to talk with him at length about his start in music, his writing process, the concept behind his album, and more!


So firstly, tell me a little bit about you. What drew you to music in the first place? 

Howard King: When I was an infant, my mom said I would get tupperware containers, coffee cans and arrange them, get some wooden spoons, sit down and go at it, haha! I’m sure it sounded like shit, but that’s how I ultimately became a self-taught drummer. And that’s where it all began. As a teenager, I got my first drum set. The first song I played on it was “Living After Midnight” by Judas Priest. It just flowed naturally, and I just kept branching out and getting better. I drummed in numerous heavy metal bands, then discovered at a practice that I had a knack for the bass and fell in love with it, too! I’ve always had an ear for music and can hear all of the instruments in most songs, so I just play by ear and figure them out. I never watch tutorials or videos to learn songs. If I can’t get a certain, intricate part like it is on the recording…I just say fuck it and play it my way!!! But, that’s why I prefer writing original music. I have a particular playing style as a drummer and a bassist, so what’s mine is mine.

So you’re entirely self-taught? Wow! 

HK: Yep, I’ve never had any lessons. Be that good or bad is entirely up to the listener. Either way, I’m cool with it. I also don’t read music. Hell, I don’t even fuck around with tabs or playthrough videos for other bands’ songs. I simply have an ear for it. When I come up with my original music, I just hear what I hear…play what I play…and keep what I like.

Once you really started focusing on learning, who were your biggest influences? Was metal always your style of choice? 

HK: My influences aren’t really that extensive, and I don’t put any emphasis on them with my own preferences and playing style. I’ve played and practiced a variety of music over the years, so I don’t really have a favorite style of music or musician, with regards to drums and bass. Memorable drummers would be Clive Burr and Cozy Powell. Memorable bassists would be James Dewar and JD DeServio. With that being said, anytime I write my own music, I ALWAYS make a point to not copy any single musician or band. So, while I love and respect those guys that I listed, I don’t try to compare myself to them or emulate their styles of play within my own music. This makes my songwriting methods completely unique to me.

No one in particular inspired you to learn drums, bass, etc., but your preferred style to listen to inspired you to create what you do?

HK: I can’t really say that any one particular musician inspired me to play music. I just always knew music was inside of me, so I simply made the effort to let it come out. I’ve never had to force it out, though. It simply flows from its origin. 

As far as my Doom Metal project, I just decided that I was over “rock and roll” and “heavy metal.” I’m not knocking them, but I’ve always preferred the blues. So, my progression into Doom Metal just made sense to me. It’s actually just heavy, down-tuned blues anyway. I have several basses, and my go-to bass is my favorite 5 string bass that I tune to Drop A, and both of my acoustic drum sets are modeled after classic kits, for that heavy, classic sound. I have written dark poetry for years, so I turned some poems into song lyrics, wrote some new shit, and fuckin boom!! Through my song arrangement style (lyrics to music, for the most part), my Doom songs were born.

I had never really considered that doom metal was a variation of Blues. You just taught me something. Why call your project

HK:  I wanted something different. I didn’t want the more common buzz words such as “electric, mono, orange, fuzz, weed, green, etc…” in my project’s name, so I went with something personal. I already knew that I was going to write occult-themed, dark lyrics, so I just drew from my past. There is a line in a movie that states, “As god of my world…” I’ve always loved that fuckin’ line, on a lot of levels. That concept has always meant a lot to me, so I came up with … the .i. in that makes it personal and unique to me and singles me out as the god of myself and all that .i. see. 

“, of all I see. Not god of you, I’m god of me. -from a song

So what is your writing and recording process like? Where do you draw inspiration for your lyrics (or poems, as the case may be)? 

HK: My process is actually quite simple. Since is a solo project, I’m the only one involved in the song writing process. That’s why I love it so much. I’ve never been difficult when working with other musicians. But some of them can be, so fuck that shit. I’ll do it all myself!

So, I’ll screw around and come up with a riff on my bass that doesn’t sound like any I’ve heard before. Then, typically I “hear” the words I’m gonna use (usually a chorus) and I always “feel” how I’m gonna lay down my drums…so boom! That’s it. All final recording is done at a friend’s studio.

As far as my lyrics/poems, not to beat a dead horse, but I truly don’t get inspired by any outside sources. They just flow from the source within, and I put them on paper. They might hit while I’m alseep, or driving down the road. I really never know. But I have never sat down and said, “What am I gonna write today?” That doesn’t work for me at all. There is just a natural flow involved. And they come out when they’re ready, and if I ignore that, they are easily forgotten.

As someone who has dabbled in writing short stories, I totally get the “if I ignore it, it’s easily forgotten.” I can concoct an entire scene in my head and I’ve lost more of them than I care to count. So, what are your upcoming plans for 2023? 

HK: I think that’s cool that you write, and that you get where I’m coming from. Shit, I have poems in my stash that are still on napkins, haha! When they come out, I’m grabbing the first thing I see to write on. Sometimes, if I’m not near my notepad, that can be anything from my palm, a napkin, to an unsent text on my phone that I can go back to when I’m near some paper. When that kind of internal shit hits, it’s forever lost if I don’t act on it. I think that’s by design, though. So it simply is what it is.

It’s funny that you bring up short stories. My debut EP, hanc aeternum, infinitum nihil 23.23, is theme-based, and I intend on writing a short story to tie everything together. I haven’t decided what to title the story yet, but it will definitely be a bit of a mind fuck for the reader, all while bringing the 5 songs from my EP into one continuous flow. I don’t want to give up too much about it right now, but I will certainly let you know when it’s done.

My plans for 2023 are to set my Doom Metal music on fire and spread it out upon the masses. Doing this shit DIY-style is very labor intensive. I also want to finish my short story and see about getting it published. My personal music is always on the edge of my brain, so I write new shit everyday…and there will be another EP at some point this year.

A short story to go with it? I’m definitely intrigued! Can you tell me a little about the theme of the EP (if you can do so without giving too much away)? What does the title translate to? And do you have a favorite track? If so, which one and why is it your favorite?

HK: The album title translates to “This eternal, infinite nothing 23.23”.

Haha, I have no favorites. I’m a little partial to every one of them (shameless plug #666). I did all the guitar work on my 5 string bass, and that’s a little different from the guitar perspective, so I had a blast creating the songs. Drums and bass are my 2 favorite instruments, so I was able to bring out the best in what I do on both instruments with the songs on the EP.

The theme of the EP is based around a girl that innocently dabbled in the occult, but ended up taking it too far – and found out that there are eternal consquences. It’s not the “newest” storytelling idea, but the theme/story is absolutely my idea, so that makes the story unique to me. I really think you’ll dig it! I know that I’m having a lot of fuckin’ fun with it. 

The short story, the theme and music of the EP is all so very personal in so many ways. I have to release this creativity that’s swirling around in my mind, or I believe I’d be consumed by it. Wait, I am consumed by it, haha! It can truly be maddening at times. But it’s a good kinda crazy. Hell, it keeps me off the streets!

Will the new EP tie in to this one, or is it going to be a completely separate work? 

HK: Oh, trust me, it’ll be a continuation. Her story is far from over. Good or bad, it’s eternal.

Well, I think that about wraps it up. Is there anything you’d like to add? Any message to your current and future fans? 

HK: My message would be, that I go out of my way to never sound like anyone else Doom Metal-related. I’ve scrapped my share of songs because of that. So, I hope everyone enjoys my music and appreciates my efforts at being original in sound and approach. 


To keep up with everything has going on, follow his socials and stay tuned here; he is an interesting artist, and I fully intend to share whatever comes next!

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