Josh Scogin ('68, ex-vocalist of The Chariot and Norma Jean) says he has been baffled by the phrase 'Christian metal' ever since it was first applied to him early in his career.
In a recent interview with Metal Injection, Scogin said "It's always been the media. People need a quick headline…I never submitted myself to any label like Christian metalcore or Christian rock. I think it's weird, because that’s not a genre. It’s a way of life or a thought process. It’s a belief.”
While Christianity and metal have a contentious relationship to say the least, some metalcore bands have identified as ‘Christian metal’ in the past. As I Lay Dying, Impending Doom and Underoath all embraced the tag, while mainstream groups like Skillet and P.O.D. have talked about it for decades.
“I personally am a deeply spiritual person," says Scogin "But I’ve never ever liked or enjoyed or embraced the labelling of anything in my art. The moment you put anything in a box, I want to step outside it. I want to push the boundaries and explore other spaces, always. And I think any artist will agree.”
Since the end of The Chariot in 2013, Josh Scogin has been half of the noise punk duo ‘68. Described by Scogin as 'much more of a live band' they have released two critically-acclaimed records and toured with some of the hottest names in metal. Like so many others, ‘68 were forced to delay their new album Give One Take One due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The album was finished in 2019, but Scogin says it would have felt 'flippant' to release it in March of last year.
"Nobody knew what was happening," he says, "We didn't want to be like 'Hey, buy our rock n' roll record!" It just wasn't a good time to promote an album."
But the pandemic could not keep Josh Scogin down. ‘68 recorded the experimental Love Is Ain’t Dead EP during quarantine and released it to rave reviews. Drummer Nikko Yamada appears for the first time, despite joining the band back in 2017. Give One Take One arrives March 26th after pre-releases "Bad Bite" and "The Knife, The Knife, The Knife".
'68 will start their pre-booked tour with Korn and Faith No More when concerts resume.