I discovered this album randomly on my endless maze crawl through the internet looking for incredible music. I hit the jackpot with this one in that department, too. At a few breaths just under 30 minutes in length, on paper it would appear as though The Sequence Of Prime‘s “Inter-” too short. Once you’ve hit play, however, and this bad boy is pummeling you from all angles – hopefully as loud as possible – you realize there is more straight up metal perfection in its less than 30 minutes time than there is in most much lengthier metal releases out this year.
“Inter-” is intense and passionate, complex and relentless, and downright fucking heavy. Beyond technically impressive, especially when keeping in mind that the entire thing comes from just one rather mild mannered looking dude from Kansas City, The Sequence Of Prime writes metal music that matches the subject matter perfectly. It is intellectually engaging in every way without its head stuffed too far in its own ass; not too serious, not too heavy, but seriously fucking heavy. Lyrics discussing black holes and other outer space shit with music that is like a 10 ton scientific jackhammer to the back of the head.
Invsible Oranges has a superb interview with Brandon Duncan, the guy behind this madness, that you should read and Hellbound.ca has a stellar review up, too. He also took the time to answer some questions for us here at Grindthieves.
“Inter-” is an incredible record and I think the feature & interview at Invisible Oranges says everything you could want to know about the subject matter and finer details of creating the album – so I’m not going to bother with specifics in that regard. That said, can you tell us about The Sequence Of Prime – how did it begin?
Hey good question man! And thanks a lot for reaching out to me for this! TSOP actually began as a graphic design project when I was in school. In my portfolio class, we were basically allowed to pick our own projects, and for one I did all the design and everything for a make believe band. After I finished the project, I thought to myself, “I should actually do something with this some day!” It ended up growing into an entirely different animal than my design project, but that’s where it all began.
Explain the significance of name The Sequence Of Prime.
The most important concept and driving force behind the name of The Sequence of Prime and the music itself comes from this quote from Leonhard Euhler: “Mathematicians have tried in vain to this day to discover some order in the sequence of prime numbers, and we have reason to believe that it is a mystery into which the human mind will never penetrate.”
On your website there are links to previous albums from Inchoate and Mancubus, in addition to The Sequence Of Prime. Can you shed some light on these projects?
Sure! Mancubus was a band that I had in high school with my cousin Eric Sigg and our friend Mike Zamora. We recorded two albums. They were written long distance. I’d do the drum programming and record the bass, then send them the tracks and they’d record the guitars. That’s what I did all throughout high school rather than playing sports or participating in any extracurricular activities, haha!
Inchoate also started in high school, just as an experimental noise type project. I recorded several more Inchoate albums throughout college. They are all random and totally different stylistically. I view that project as sort of a playground of sounds where I learned a lot of different skills, sound design and recording techniques.
Opinions on “the industry”, in terms of music? How does that play into your efforts as a musician?
I really don’t pay much attention to the industry to be perfectly honest with you. I pay attention to bands and styles of music I like, but not the industry itself. I just write the music I want to hear and release it on my own terms!
You recently had a sort of scavneger hunt on your Facebook page in relation to the cover art for “Inter-”, do you put little bits of yourself and additional concepts/etc into all your visual work, professionally and personally?
With my personal work, yeah I almost always include something! That’s one of the things that makes creating art fun to me, hiding little things here and there! I strive to create things that people will really want to examine, musically and visually. Whether I’m always successful at it or not is a different story, but that’s what I’m almost always going for!
At the day job though, I never do such things. I take my job seriously and always try to be very professional. More often than not it wouldn’t be appropriate for me to hide anything. Especially with the type of shit that goes through my head every day…ya know? I’d get fired, hahaha!
Biggest influences overall, in terms of music?
My absolute favorite bands are those that write abrasive, sinister music that takes no compromises. It’s a pretty standard answer in the metal world, but Slayer was really the first band that made me think “Holy fuck…This is who I am!!!” Hahahaha. I’m a huge fan of bands like Destroyer 666, Watchmaker, The Crown, Today is the Day, Pig Destroyer, Azarath, Marduk, Anaal Nathrakh, Impiety, etc… I like my metal EVIL, hahaha. I enjoy listening to lots of different types of music on a daily basis, but those bands and others along the same lines are the ones that really kick my ass and inspire me to pick up my guitar!
Outside of metal/etc music, what else might we find on your iPod?
I listen to a lot of ambient, industrial, hip hop, new wave, dark wave and goth rock stuff. Lately I’ve been listening to Bauhaus, Killer Mike, Death Grips, Sisters of Mercy, and Merciful Nuns a lot.
Biggest influences overall, in terms of art/design?
I’m mostly influenced by artists that did paintings and illustrations that were used as cover art on old sci-fi paperbacks. I collect vintage sci-fi paperbacks and they are the most beautiful thing in the world in my eyes! Most of the time the artists in the are uncredited, as it didn’t used to be required for a publisher to list the cover artist. But that kind of makes it fun to dig through and find out who the artists were through a little detective work! Some of my favorites I know of are Josh Kirby, Robert Pepper, and Bruce Pennington. I’m also a big fan of artists like Anatoly Fomenko, Goya and Francis Bacon.
Your visual art and design work is as equally incredible and, often times, just as intense as the material heard on “Inter-” – any place to experience your work in a gallery/etc type setting or purchase some of your original visual art/design?
I’ve had exhibitions in the past, but it hasn’t been something I’ve been interested in for quite some time. I’d rather spend that time learning new things and making more art than organizing, preparing for and promoting a show. It’s quite stressful to me, and I also get severe social anxiety in a gallery setting. Hahaha. Seriously, I hate it! I’d rather punch myself in the face than try to hang out and make small talk with people while they’re looking at all my shit, hahaha. That’s one of the many things I like about the internet. When I’m finished with something, within a couple minutes I can exhibit it online and almost the whole world can look at it immediately. That’s the coolest thing to me! Sure, there’s a lot to be said for having a traditional exhibition, but I’m a futurist. An anxiety filled futurist….hahahaha.
As for purchasing my art, I actually just finished building a new website for my art that has prices and information on signed and framed prints! It’s sickfuture.net
I usually refrain from talking much about anything I’m working on until it’s done. It’s kind of a lesson I learned a while back after a big project I had been talking about forever failed, hahaha. So all I’ll say is that I have the name of the album and the overall lyrical concept determined, but I haven’t started writing any of the music or anything yet. Not sure when I will either. It just depends on time and inspiration reaching equilibrium!
I notice that you’ve done a lot of design work for beer labels and such – what’s your brew of choice right now?
Well I’ve actually been broke as hell, so good ol’ PBR has been my buddy lately. But I’m a fan of the breweries in nearby states, like Boulevard, Breckenredge, and Schlafly. They all make solid brews.
Last good book you read & can recommend?
I’m almost done reading The Stars in their Courses by Isaac Asimov. I’d recommend it to anyone, especially people that haven’t ever read any Asimov. It’s shorter than a lot of his books and gives a good taste of his class and sense of humor. I’ve yet to read anything of his that I can’t recommend.
Last good film you watched & can recommend?
Hobo With a Shotgun, baby! I love it. It’s over the top, violent, hilarious, cheesy and disturbing all at the same time, with killer art direction and wildly creative ideas all over the place!! I can’t wait to see what Jason Eisener and co. come up with next.
How do you find time for everything?
Easy, I’m single!
So, cheers to Brandon. Download “Inter-” from The Sequence Of Prime and check out the video for “Tachyon”, the lead track from the album.
The Sequence Of Prime – “Inter-”
02. Ultimate Ensemble 01:16
03. Schwarzschild Radius 02:37
04. Denouement 05:23
05. Vertex 02:26
06. Intermission 01:08
07. Directed Panspermia 03:15
08. Shades 01:21
09. Hologram 03:16
10. Enter 01:15