What are your names?
Shakey Sue – Vocals
Jozzy – Guitar
Domján Gabi – Bass
Budai Béla – Drums
What is the band’s name?
How did you come up with the band’s names?
The birth of the band name did not happen yesterday. I was more or less a teenager when I formed the band. The only thing I can clearly remember is that we wanted to have a one-word band name. I came up with the idea when I was working at one of my very first jobs, a rockabilly bar as a bartender where I didn’t even earn 2$ / hour, so far from home that it was almost impossible to get back late at night. So, the birthplace of the band was quite a hopeless place and compared to that we’re very happy about how far it’s come.
What is your genre of music?
We’re mixing the elements of punk, rock and metal.
Give us a little bio about you.
It’s hard to sum up a decade. Here you can find our long bio: https://thehellfreaks.com/about-us
OR Founded in 2009, reinvented in 2015, The Hellfreaks are a punk rock powerhouse from Budapest, Hungary. Their brand of hard-hitting, attitude packed alternative music has taken them across Europe and overseas to the USA, landing them world renowned festivals, major club shows and international awards. Accumulating millions of listeners across the globe, The Hellfreaks have an impressive back catalogue of hits featured on full length records and compilation albums.
2019 will introduce a brand-new era of commercially viable, head banging punk rock madness to the masses. Get ready to descend into the darkest pits of hell where the freaks don’t sleep, and music keeps playing.
What made you go into music?
I got into music literally by accident. I was a professional gymnast, sport was pretty much my everything – but unfortunately, I once landed wrong on my feet, which resulted in a spine operation when I was 14 years old. I had to recalculate my life and fill the gap that my sports career had left behind. It was a difficult reality to accept at the time. The physical pain was nothing compared to the hole in my soul that I tried to fill. That’s how I found music and a couple of years later, ended up forming The Hellfreaks in 2009.
Are you a signed?
Yes, we’re signed with the German label Sunny Bastard Records
You released your new single ‘Red Sky, tell us more about the single.
In January 2020, our fourth album will be released under the title ‘God on The Run’ on CD and LP. We’ve been working on new songs for more than two years, fulfilling one of our dreams of working with foreign producers. Various artists have contributed to our work to get the most out of the band’s songs and ideas: Paul Miner (New Found Glory, Atreyu, Death By Stereo) – pre-production, Evan Rodaniche (Escape The Faith, Powerman 5000, Lacey Sturm) – production / mixing phases and Tom Waltz with the mastering. Red Sky is the second single we’ve released from God on The Run.
What is the meaning behind the single?
Without pain, we do nothing, we just sit on the fence and stare. With a little pain that’s manageable, you can increase the dose slowly. Once the pain has become unbearable and can no longer be tolerated, only then will the instinct to preserve life become so powerful that it will destroy everything. This is true at both social and personal levels. The system vegetates on autopilot but explodes when it freezes to death. These are the situations when revolutions erupt and when mountains move and behind that, the immeasurable pain becomes useful, almost a friend, coming to your rescue. Allow yourself to hurt what has to be hurt, do not suppress it, let it come to the surface, let it rage, let it howl. This is where the change lies, and this is what Red Sky is about.
Describe the track in two words.
What was the writing process like? All of our albums have had a totally different writing process. The songs of God on The Run were not written in the rehearsal room. Most of the parts have been written separately by all the members putting the puzzle pieces together afterwards, so everyone has their own writing process.
I’m pretty old school when it comes to the lyrics: I can’t sit down and figure out what I want to write about on purpose. The ideas find me randomly, so I always write down 2-3 words or a line in my phone wherever I am in that moment, otherwise the idea is gone forever. The idea of Red Sky found me on Facebook: someone wrote a Facebook post about a big protest we had in town. But the song is not political at all, it’s the spirit that influenced me. When it comes to the song, I look at my idea board and pick out one of these ideas to work on. When I start to work on the words, I need to be alone and I’m not able to write in digital form. I need to have a paper and a pen in my hand, otherwise my brain is blocked.
What was the recording process like?
After all our demos were done, we tracked the finalised guitars and the bass. After that we recorded the main vocal parts and the backing vocals. The drums were actually the last step before we sent the album out for mixing.
Will we see a music video for of the tracks?
We’ve released two singles from our upcoming album so far: Men in Grey and Red Sky. Both with a music video created by our partners in crime, a Hungarian team called Mihaszna Film
Men In Grey
We also saw an album drop, tell us more about the album and the message behind it.
Our new album is lyric wise focused on imperfection. It’s about our own imperfections and of our surroundings. It’s about the feeling of drowning and standing our ground to win the fight at the same time. It’s a mix of honest thoughts vocally and instrumentally. We merge metal, punk, rock music and maybe even a bit of hardcore. Something which seems impossible to categorize even though we know that most people just NEED categories to know what to think of it … But we’ll never fit in and this is one of our best qualities and that’s what we want to share with the audience: don’t force yourself to fit in. Doesn’t matter what the topic is.
Do you have any shows coming up?
Our German booking agency Solar Penguin Agency is working on our album release tour, so hopefully we will have something to announce soon!
What else can we expect in 2019?
The next big bang is just around the corner as we’re going to release another song with a cool music video in the beginning of December. The song is called Witches Heal and it’s a mix of heavy rock, poppy vocals and metal screams to bring the witchy, voodoo sisterhood vibes alive. It’s made for dancing naked under the moon.
Do you have any collaborations coming up with any upcoming artists?
There is nothing like this planned yet.
Would you be up for collaborations if other musicians wanted one with you? and who would they have to contact?
Of course, we would be totally open for that! Anyone can get directly in touch with us on our social media channels, but our bass player has dedicated profiles for that where you can book him for a session.
Do you play any instruments?
No, I’m “just” a singer.
Who are your influences?
I hate to use the term “female fronted bands”, but that’s how I’ll deliver the point: I love loud rock bands with tough women at the front. They are pure inspiration to me.
How do you get inspiration to write songs?
Each of us finds inspiration in different things luckily. That’s the reason we are able to create something unique. Personally I, as a singer, can only talk about things that I feel, understand, think about, whatever moves me, about what hurts me and as someone from Hungary, I’m facing a lot of unfairness and it’s a great way to let this frustration out. I’m getting pretty naked in my lyrics, so you will get a look right through my heart & soul.
Where do you see yourself now in 5 Years?
I hope that we’ll be touring so much that we’ll be sick of it!
When you’re not doing music, what do you do?
I have a real-life job as well, I work as PPC Manager, but that’s a job that doesn’t define me. I love to travel, to see and understand other cultures. I love to stay at home and spend quality time with my 4 cats. I love to do sports, because it keeps my mind clean, I love to read fantasy books and I love post-apocalyptic films.
What was the song you listened to most that influenced you to go more into the music scene?
I’m not able to name one song. I was magnetized at a pretty young age by the different corners of the rock music scene. I was very into punk and hardcore music and later on, rockabilly, psychobilly and metal. I always loved being part of the scene and with time, I just got more and more involved which ended up with me being on the stage.
What’s the best advice you have ever been given?
That I ever give – “Never trust that guy!”
What advice would you give to aspiring musicians not about the industry and just as an artist?
It’s a cliché but time flies by before you know it. So, the day you look back on a previous lifetime might come sooner than you think. When you look back, what do you want to see? Did you use your time the best way you could? Have you really done everything you can to be happy? Is there a value that you could give each passing hour?
Whatever your art is, if you enjoy it, if it makes you happy, doesn’t matter how hard the circumstances are, stick to it! Cause that’s a part of you that will never die. It’s worth it. t
What quote or saying do you always stick by?
In the end they will judge me anyway, so whatever.
Where in your hometown is a must go to visit?
I was born and live in Budapest. If you’re into the typical ‘must see tourist’ stuff, then you should visit a place called Citadella or the Parliament etc. If you are about the nightlife, look around Király utca and streets similar to that.
Your coming off tour;
1/ Where do you go first? Most of the time we play pretty far from home with long distances to drive so what we normally do is not sleep after the last gig, hop on to the bus and start our drive home in the middle of the night. So, the first thing I do when we arrive home is taking a shower and go to sleep.
2/ Who do you see first? My cats. They are always waiting for me at the door when I come home.
3/What do you eat first? As I don’t have a fridge that refills itself, it’s always totally empty when I come home. But normally the first thing I look for is something healthy, a salad, an apple, SOMETHING with vitamins. Something like this, as it’s always hard to avoid fast food on tour. That I’m not really into.
When you are at a gig, what are 5 things you cannot forget?
- My equipment (Telefunken M80 microphone and Sennheiser in ear monitor system)
- My audio files for vocal warm up (Warmups of Melissa Cross and Brett Manning)
- My platform shoes.
- Salvus Spray. That’s basically an alkaline water that I use on stage for my throat. I use it from time to time between songs to prevent my throat from dryness.
Do you have social media accounts so your fans can follow you?