Facing The Gallows is a high-energy, no-nonsense, smack-you-in-the-face kind of metalcore band hailing from Hate City (Johannesburg, ZA). The current line-up consists of Reegan du Buisson (Vocals), James Irving (Guitar), Chase Beynon (Guitar), Ray James (Bass), and Victor Monginho (Drums). During their 14 years of existence, they have played every major festival you can think of in SA including; Oppikoppi, RAMfest, Woodstock, Krank’d up, Thornfest, and of course, represented South Africa at the Wacken Open Air Fest in Germany in 2019. A band with a banging discography under the belt and loads of tour experience, we can easily say that they’re one of the most experienced metal exports our beautiful country has to offer. Thanks for taking the time, guys. We are excited to have you.
Could you guys give us a bit of a background check on FTG and how the band started out?
Thank you guys for taking the time to chat with us. Well as the two OG members, Ray and I could tell you about the start of the band, but basically, we were two kids drinking beer every weekend at shows and got inspired by bands like The Halo Effect and Gadabout that played pretty regularly back then. We spoke to friends, and friends of friends, and before we knew it we had the makings of a band all with similar tastes in music. One varsity break we spent like 2 or 3 weeks straight at our drummer Nem’s house, writing a couple songs, and we had a set ready to play.
How would you explain your sound to a new listener?
Haha to anyone who doesn’t know or understand metal, I usually say we’re a hard rock band, like really hard. I guess we are a metalcore band, with mixes of punk and metal, melody and breakdowns, clean vocals, and non-stop aggressive screaming.
You guys come a long way and obviously there are some crazy memories formed over the years of being a band. Any cool memo’s that stand out that you’d like to share with us?
We have had quite a long journey of 14 years so far, and I think an incredibly lucky one at that. I think the biggest memories for me, was just getting to meet, share a stage with, and hang out with some of my all-time favourite bands, and in my home country. Bands like Everytime I Die, Fit for a King, Comeback Kid, Haste the Day, Darkest Hour, Jinjer all in my top band list really impressed me as to how amazingly friendly and supportive they were as people, being on the road constantly.
Gallows has underwent a few member changes over the years – how did it affect the band when an original founding member left? Just got to give props to Reegan, if anyone, you guys made a great call to get him on board, such a good vocalist and a great fit to the well-oiled machine.
It was quite a big blow when Nem decided to leave us because I always thought we were the most solid unit that would never break apart. But things happen, people go in different directions, I’m glad we are all still super tight friends, the band just got bigger in a way. Reegan was such an amazing addition because we just fit right in from the first time we met. The day he came for vocal auditions we were all feeling really low because things weren’t looking too promising for us regarding a new vocalist until he stepped into that room.
With shows and festivals hopefully coming back sooner than later, which venues and festivals are you guys looking forward to play the most?
Our favourite lately has to be Ramfest, it has been absolutely amazing working with those guys. The Ram team have been working hard to bring high-quality events at a sustainable level, and they have been crushing it the past couple of years. They have always been big supporters of FTG and we will always continue to support their festivals.
On that note, what’s your favourite live show memory?
I think one of my favourites has to be Ramfest around 2010 or so in the Western Cape. We had a killer show, with an insane view of mountains as the backdrop for the stage we played, it was like something out of a movie. I remember jamming mid-set, looking down at the floor and my guitar neck, and I noticed a pigs head rolling across the stage. Our vocalist at the time Bryan tried to kick it and nearly broke his foot it was so heavy, leading us to realise it was fucking real! Pretty whack thing to see at a show, but also pretty metal haha.
One piece of advice you would give to our readers that are in up-and-coming bands?
Think about how you want to run a band as members hanging out with each other. Do you want to run it like a business, or do you want to be a band of brothers with a common goal, putting friendship first, but taking things just as seriously? You ultimately end up with a second family in your life. But running things business-oriented, you can’t be afraid to kick members or managers out of their positions if they aren’t performing how they should be. Once you are ready to play live, play as many shows as you can, you won’t want to stop.
We can’t not talk about Wacken – how was the experience as a whole heading to Europe and playing such a massive stage, all while representing your country? Must have been a special one.
Getting to go to Wacken was the most incredible experience this band has had. Getting to represent South Africa, we were proud of what we did. Though we were shitting ourselves before that show! We just wanted everything to go smoothly, we weren’t too concerned about the actual battle. We just wanted to give a good first impression to a crowd who had never heard of us before, and things went amazingly, we sold a shit ton of merch somehow from a railing next to the stage tent after the show.
The festival was such a fun experience and eye-opening in a lot of ways. Everyone was super friendly, and the sun goes down pretty late in their summer, so the partying just goes on, and the days feel endless. Our feet nearly just fell off with the amount of walking we did. And post the festival we were lucky enough to play two shows with Jinjer and see a bit of Germany. Massive thank you to Jinjer for that opportunity, and to the South African Wacken Metal Battle team, for the opportunity to make it to Germany. You can watch the short documentary of our trip on youtube – A journey to Wacken.
Facing The Gallows at Wacken Open Air 2019
What’s the plans for the rest of 2021? Hopefully some new tunes are in the pipeline? The EP you guys put out last year left us hungry for more!
For quite some time we have needed to take a break from shows and focus on new material and a new album. Lockdown kinda helped us with that, but we weren’t as productive as we should have been. But I think at the time, work and survival were more important for each of us. At the moment we are pushing hard on completing pre-production on a new album, hopefully by December 2021. Beginning 2022 we will jump in the studio and get everything tracked in a month or two. Following that we will be looking at album tours, so keep a lookout next year!
Where can our readers go check out your music and merch?
All of our music is available on all major platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Tidal, etc We just launched our new web store which we are super excited about. Thanks to the Pins & Knuckles team for helping us out with all of our merchandise, and their top quality. For international orders check out: facingthegallows.com, and for South African orders visit za.facingthegallows.com
High Fives & Stage Dives.