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The End Of An Era With SIMON & RASHID From MASSIC

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One of the most powerful and humbling things about being a part of the global metal family is the bonds that are forged through music.

Not only the out-and-out friendships and life-changing moments but also the subtle nuances that often go unnoticed by all except the parties directly involved.

It can be a smile, a glance, a guttural scream to the face, even a wayward elbow in the mosh pit but no matter the genesis of the act the outcome is always the same.

We are one, we are many, and we are united in music as in life.

While every band starts out this way to an extent the trivialities and triumphs of everyday life can often skew these ideals but while physical connections may fade no one can ever take the one thing away that matters to the core.

The music.

Which is why many people are often left shattered and disillusioned when their favourite bands retires or makes it to the inevitable next level that elevates them beyond the reach of early fans. Music is life and life is music.

Not just for metalheads, but for every person who has been touched in some way by any form of music.

That may explain moments of mass hysteria when one of The Beatles appeared at a window, or when Ozzy Osbourne peered over the top of his microphone and lovingly told everyone within earshot to fuck off.

Perhaps one of the more magical components of music is its universal acceptance and maniacal obsession.

Many will still remember where they were when Lemmy died or the day Cliff Burton left this realm while others around him suffered barely a scratch. It’s like you have lost one of your own and unfortunately that feeling never gets easier to bear.

On a less global – but still highly relevant – scale, the Brisbane, Queensland and Australian music community will mourn as one when Brisbane masters of groove and metal Massic play their last show together at The Zoo in Brisbane on Friday, March 24.

The fact the band are still active to plan their exit is testament to the courage and strength of vocalist Simon Russell-White whose well publicised heart failure a mere 18 months ago almost brought a premature ending to everything.

The fact he got to reunite with his Massic brothers on stage and continue to play and record is a blessing from the Metal Gods themselves and now Massic get the chance to go out on their terms.

At their choosing.

At their own triumphant farewell.

People unfamiliar with the band might be wondering what I am waffling on about, but if you have ever heard, seen, or been welcomed into the all-encompassing arms which all five band members extend willingly then you know the score.

HEAVY had the honour of sitting down with Simon and bass player Rashid for what could well be Massic’s final interview and despite the sense of sorrow hanging in the air we still managed to throw together a decent yarn befitting of the indelible mark the Brisbane outfit has made on the music scene.

Massic has also hand-picked a stellar supporting cast for their farewell, with Flaming Wreckage, The Black Swamp and From Crisis To Collapse granted the privilege of sharing the stage with them for the final time, with Simon admitting the process of asking which band to play on the night was difficult to say the least.

“We were really lucky in the fact that when we got together and decided we were going to do this, which bands did we want to play with us,” Simon measured. “There was a fairly decent list in our heads at least, and, like I have said previously, there was no real order. We just had three bands that we wanted to ask first, and they all said yes (laughs).”

As long as the list of bands was in their heads, the actual number who would have gladly offered their services to play the show was probably double.

“There was a weighing up there of bands we had played with recently,” Rashid offered. “We kind of wanted to reach back over the entire career of Massic and bands that we have played really memorable shows with and maybe haven’t had a chance to play with over the last few months to a year.”

The Black Swamp we actually did our first album launch with,” Simon continued, “so they were a special mention. Flaming Wreckage we met in Sydney for our first – and ultimately only – East Coast tour. We played a couple of shows with them and those boys in general are incredible. From Crisis To Collapse, they’re our guys. We played 36 Crazyfists with them and a lockdown show and formed bonds with too. There’s other bands that I made a point of not mentioning because they know who they are but were obvious choices but half of those guys are coming to the show anyway. We were lucky. The first three we wanted to ask, in no particular order, said yes otherwise it was going to be a case of let’s go down the line. As Rashid said, some bands that we played recently with a lot we decided let’s just catalogue out.”

“Like Si says, they will probably be in the crowd anyway,” Rashid took over, “which also means they will probably be on stage with us as well anyway (laughs).”

In the full interview, Simon and Rashid run us through the plans for Friday’s show, hint at some special surprises, talk about the bond they share with their fans and the power of music, recall some of their memorable moments with the band, discuss both albums Redshift and Cognisant and which they feel is better, the main reasons behind the decision to call it a day, regrets, joys, guest performers on the night, the emotions involved and how they plan to deal with them, unfinished business and more.

On behalf of everyone who loves metal, boys, thanks for enriching our lives musically and personally.
It’s been an honour, and a pleasure.
There are surprisingly still a few tickets left for Friday night’s show so if you haven’t booked yourself in yet, grab your tickets now from https://tickets.oztix.com.au

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