Krank’d Up 2018 featuring Miss May I and SikTh takes place on Saturday, 29 September at Sundowners, Alberton. 19 spectacular South African rock and metal acts will be rounding off the line-up. This is going to be huge. Don’t delay, get your hands on tickets now!

Krank’d Up 2018 ticket info:

Full price tickets are R600 each. Limited VIP tickets are available through www.krankdupfestival.co.za at R700 each.

With that said, I had a chat with Mikee Goodman from SikTh.

Sikth started out in 1999, with the first releases coming in 2002, when the world was a vastly different place. Nu-metal was still a hugely successful genre with the likes of Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit and SOAD, and rock was still the biggest genre in the world. All that has changed recently. How does a band who, despite the seven-year hiatus, have been together for close to two decades adapt to the changing of the times?

We have always been a bit further out of the Limp Bizkit and SOAD crowds, I think rock is still very strong but promoting an album nowadays can be hard as the internet seems to be over saturated with bands and there. Not as many people read magazines, not as many tune in to one particular station, it is quite fragmented now.

Sikth’s hiatus in 2007 came as a result of members wanting to focus on other projects besides the band. All the members were quite busy as a result, with members joining or starting new bands, becoming music teachers, sessions musicians and technicians, as well as producing albums by bands such as Enter Shikari. Was the reunion spoken about at length before it happened?

You also should add music video director and editor plus voiceover artist, producer and casting director in video games (myself). Plus I made an album with Adrian Smith from Iron Maiden in 2012 called Awoken Broken by Primal Rock Rebellion 😉
Yes, the reunion was spoken about a lot, planned out in advance a good few months before.

Your reputation grew steadily in the years between your initial break-up and reunion, with Sikth playing larger shows and receiving more plaudits now than in the first years. This is sort of similar to a film not being appreciated upon release and then becoming a massive cult hit. A lot of this has been attributed to Misha Mansoor listing you as a major influence, leading to a massive influx of new fans. Did this increase in popularity play any kind of role in the band coming back together, or was it mainly an internal thing?

Yes, of course, the fact people keep on saying they want you to come back, all the UK Festival promoters were asking for us to play. So much interest, we wanted to play to our fans again.

You have frequently been cited as one of the most influential bands in progressive metal, being regarded as one of the founding bands of djent. While this is high praise indeed, it can also lead to an unwanted pressure in a band. Does this affect Sikth in anyway, or is it just good to be appreciated?

Its just appreciated that people want us to come and play shows around the world. It’s fine if they want to call a genre Djent.

Since reforming. the band has been busy, releasing an EP, an LP and touring constantly, with a headline spot on the main stage at Download Festival in 2017 arguably the peak of the lot. What has been the band’s personal high-point so far?

That was not the peak, honestly, it may have looked it on paper but it was certainly not the best show. I would say the reunion at Download in 2014, Kathmandu in 2014 plus Koko in 2014 was insane. Then supporting Periphery was amazing in USA 2016. We really enjoyed Australia this year. Then going back to Japan in 2014, 2015 and 2018 was amazing. Maybe the 1 best ever show must be Koko 2014 for me.

You released your fourth EP, Opacities in 2015 and your third full-length album, The Future In Whose Eyes? In 2017, to all-round acclaim. This is something to be appreciated, as it becomes increasingly more difficult to release albums on par with your previous work the longer the gap between releases is. This was evident in releases such as Guns ‘n Roses’ Chinese Democracy or Limp Bizkit’s Gold Cobra. How was the writing process affected by the nine-year gap? Or was it just back to business as usual?

Yes, it is hard but I believe it was harder with this as it was harder to promote. I think its a great album. The writing process did not change so much from Death of a Dead Day. The instrumentalists have not all been writing metal every since the hiatus, some have but not all. I personally have not stopped writing vocals, so no change for me. One thing that may have helped was Opacities mini Album we did before. I am so proud of that.

Coming to South Africa will be a first for Sikth. With your most recent release also being your most commercially successful one, what else is on the horizon? Are there any goals the band wants to achieve?

We are so excited to come and play there. I guess we would like to go play South America now, then we could have been to all continents apart from the Antarctic.

*Header image by Gobinder Jhitta