If you’ve been around these parts since the early days, you’re sure to recognize the name Tre Watson. Proprietor of his own solo project to being the driving force of deathcore act Carthage, Tre was never content with just sitting still. Early TW material was in keeping with the then-burgeoning djent scene with percussive staccato riffs in metalcore-tinged instrumental metal. Then, distancing himself from djent, Tre pursued jazz and progressive rock.
Now, Tre is forging a new path for himself by taking a big risk: blending metalcore and hip-hop. Obviously, the idea alone is enough to turn off a majority of internet metal nerds, but keep an open mind. Think more of the informed delivery of Sevendust’s nu-metal era and not the tough guy posturing Limp Bizkit, but within the context of chuggy deathcore like The Acacia Strain. You’ll see.
Tre was quick to come with a shortlist of influences that informed his new trap-inspired metal style as heard on his new single “Conspire.” Get a rundown of the sounds you can expect out of Tre in 2018 after the cut.
Veil of Maya – Mikasa
Mikasa is a weird mixed bag for me, because a lot of my friends hated it but it felt like the band took much more care in constructing flow. They didn’t shy away from mixing rhythm and melody, order and chaos, on this album, and that spoke to me.
Scarlxrd – Lxrdszn
Scarlxrd crept up on me. A lot of people who follow what I do or talk to me in real life know I love hip-hop as much as I love metal, and I’m gonna be doing a lot more rapping on the new material I’m writing. I followed him when, I think, heart attack dropped and his music has just gotten more grimy visceral and groovy as time goes on. The guy is crazy prolific and I’m already feeling some of that style and mix of hip-hop and heavy music reflected in how I write.
The Acacia Strain – Wormwood
I feel like this album honestly shaped how I approached a lot of my riffing just in general. So many of these riffs are not complicated, but the energy is just… there. Low, heavy, simple. No frills, no bullshit.
Kid Cudi – Man On The Moon
Musically, thematically, Man on the Moon carries no influence. I’m not hmm and I don’t think I can be, but lyrically he was one of the first rappers who showed me that there’s nothing wrong with wanting to appeal to the mainstream but really use that vehicle to sneak in messages about not being okay. About struggle and suffering. A lot of newer hip-hop heads have the saying “Kid Cudi Saved my life”, but as I was recovering from a suicide attempt in 2015, (which my last album was about), some of Cudi’s lyrical content became meditative. To this day I don’t think anyone’s lyrical honesty had an effect on me as much as Kid Cudi.
Tre Watson’s new single “Conspire” is available now. Watch the video below.
Keep up with Tre Watson on Facebook. A new full-length will be out late 2018.