Most band’s spend years building up to their debut album, but Waylon Reavis has never done things the traditional way. When the former Mushroomhead vocalist decided on his new project it happened quickly; they were in the studio recording Unbroken a mere week after formation working with Thom Haezart of EMP Label Group, the label started by Megadeth’s Dave Ellefson. When A Killer’s Confession came together, Reavis had been testing the creative waters, helping out on some tracks for other artists while keeping his eyes and ears open for something that really connected with him. Enter guitarist Matt Trumpy.
“Matthew Trumpy sent me a song. ‘A Killer’s Confession.’ That was the song,” Reavis recently shared with Metalholic. “It was the last one I opened and I knew instantly: I’ve got to talk him into being in a band somehow, some way. He just blew my F’ing mind. I couldn’t believe how good it was. So I sent that to Brian ‘Head’ Welch and he listened to it, and I asked him to produce it. He said I can’t produce it, but I’ll play on it. When Brian said it was good enough, I thought, ‘Alright, let’s do this.’ And that’s what happened.”
Matthew Trumpy was the first piece to fall into place and with him came guitarist Paul Elliott and drummer Jon Dale. Reavis brought his old friend and 3 Quarters Dead bassist JP Cross into the fold, and A Killer’s Confession emerged. Reavis has found a brotherhood with his new band:
“This is the band I was meant to be in. It’s a brotherhood. We love each other. You’d think we had known each other our entire lives.”
Still it is his writing partnership with Trumpy that defines the band’s sound.
“Musically Trumpy and I really get each other. He gets me and I get him,” offers Reavis. “He’s able to do something, and I am too. And we get it. We cater to each other. I do it vocally for his music and he does it musically for my vocals. He’s that guy that helps you reinvent yourself and I just knew he was the one. I can’t speak highly enough of that man, and I love him to death. I told him, ‘If you don’t do this, I’m not doing it anymore.’ I told him that flat out. I found my soul mate when it comes to writing.”
Reavis does not see A Killer’s Confession as a one album project either. He is in this for the long haul.
“We’re already like seven songs deep into album two. We’re doing 10 albums in 10 years. It’s going to definitely be something else. We’re seven songs in and we’re going to do an album a year for 10 years.”
Unbroken resonates with anger and rage yet this offset by a sense of hope. This is a central part of the feeling and message Reavis wanted to convey with the debut album, but it is also about acceptance and accountability.
“Unbroken–forgiveness. It’s all in the title,” Waylon explains. “A Killer’s Confession–confession. You’ve got to get it off your chest. You’ve got to move on with your life. There is a sense of hope. There is a lot of anger. But the anger is not directed towards anybody. That’s myself. You are completely responsible for everything that happens in your life. Everything. You are the reason for where you’re at or where you’re not. If you’re not happy with that, you need to do something about it. this album is a testament to that. This album was lyrically admitting guilt, but saying to the fans, do not give up on me. There is a direct message there, and it is don’t give up on yourself.”
You can listen to the full interview with Reavis below as he talks in-depth about the making of Unbroken, the most difficult song he’s ever had to write, getting things off his chest, and embracing life.