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Landmine Marathon Guitarist Discusses Metallica Influence + New Drummer at Orion Festival

Landmine Marathon

There’s no doubt that Landmine Marathon are thrilled to be a part of the Metallica-run Orion Music + More festival. Bassist Matt Martinez said as much earlier this week in his interview with Loudwire. So it should come as no surprise that the band turned up a day early at Atlantic City’s Bader Field to consume the excitement that is Orion before they take the Damage Inc. stage on Sunday.

Guitarist Ryan Butler stopped by Saturday at the event to share his thoughts on being selected to take part. He told Loudwire, “As longtime fans of Metallica, it means a lot to be a part of Orion. My right hand downpicks the way it does because of James Hetfield. To know that he’s listening to my band is pretty wild.”

Landmine Marathon have carved a place in the world of death metal for themselves, and Butler can’t say enough about Metallica’s influence on him. “In the 80s, I was looking in the mirror imagining that I was Metallica,” says the guitarist. “I’m 35 at this point, but still, they were one of my childhood heroes. They still are.”

Butler says as they hope to continue to grow the band, they’ve announced a new addition to their lineup. He reveals, “We just got a new drummer, Raul Varela. We’ve been friends for a long, long time. He actually directed the video for ‘Beaten and Left Blind.'”

Varela found out that Landmine Marathon needed a new drummer and was really interested in joining. “I had been playing with another band and whenever we went to Phoenix I always ended up staying with Ryan,” the drummer says. “When we wrapped up shooting the video, I told them that I would be down to play with them and the next phone call was trying to figure out how we make it work.”

With a new drummer, Landmine Marathon is ready to keep converting new fans while still remaining true to the original ones. Led by Grace Perry, the explosive and ferocious one-of-a-kind frontwoman, the road to accomplishing that isn’t always easy.

“The obstacles vary. Some people are just blown away by Grace and think it’s amazing. Some people think it’s a gimmick, which is stupid. It’s not a gimmick in any way. She was asked to join the band originally because of her voice, not because she’s a woman,” Butler explains. “She’s become a little bit of an icon, an irreplaceable type thing with the band. And you know, we have accepted some of the bigger press, so there has been a little bit of an underground backlash. Matt [Martinez] and I grew up in the hardcore scene and are still really involved. Sometimes there are do-it-yourself kids who give us some grief, but you know what? F— them.”

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