I’ve recently had the pleasure of corresponding, mostly via Facebook messenger, with Canadian drummer Nick Yacyshyn. Like a lot of metal heads I’ve met and/or talked to, Nick’s a genuinely friendly guy, and he has graciously agreed to be interviewed for the WOBC blog. On top of that, he’s a uniquely talented, creative drummer.
I first became aware of Nick as a result of his involvement in post-metal super group SUMAC, where he plays alongside Aaron Turner of Isis/Old Man Gloom and Brian Cook of Russian Circles/ex-Botch/ex-These Arms Are Snakes. As I’ve said many times to those who will listen, SUMAC’s inaugural album, The Deal, is hands down my favorite of 2015. Since its release, I’ve listened to it at least 10 times. As a drummer, I became fascinated by Nick’s complex texturing and unconventional rhythmic patterns. One song in particular, ‘Thorn in the Lion’s Paw’, had my mind warped. Rather than submitting to my utter confusion, I decided to reach out to Nick and ask him what the pattern was. Despite being on tour on the other side of the planet, Nick got back to me with an hour. He clearly explained the drumbeat, and demystified that which would have otherwise remained totally opaque and indecipherable.
Following this exchange, I dug into Nick’s back catalog, including (but not limited to) his two albums with British Columbia based hardcore act Baptists. Needless to say, I was blown away, not only by the band’s explosive sound but also by their—and in particular Nick’s—breakneck speed. And as I soon found out, I wasn’t the only person who was impressed. Ex-Nirvana drummer and Foo Fighter Dave Grohl had posted numerous videos of Nick playing with Baptists online, accompanied by messages like ‘My favorite drummer’ and ‘Drummers beware’. Drummers beware, indeed.
But enough with the stunning praise and all-star endorsements, and onto the interview!
Continue reading Rhythmically Gifted: An Interview with Nick Yacyshyn