3 Inches of Blood3 Inches of Blood
By Dave Schwartz
Photos by Dave Schwartz

Hailing from Vancouver, Canada, 3 Inches of Blood is a six piece band with two lead singers, Cam Pipes and Jamie Hooper, two guitarists, Justin Hagberg and Shane Clark, Brian Redman on bass and Matt Wood on drums. You may not be familiar with this new signing on Roadrunner Records, but one listen to their latest release, "Advance and Vanquish" and you’ll understand why the label went after them. And in many ways, 3 Inches of Blood has taken a very old school approach to an age old problem for most band-- how to get noticed. For Pipes and the boys, the answer was as far away as their turntable.

I spoke with vocalist Cam Pipes just before 3 Inches of Blood embarked on their first tour in support of "Advance and Vanquish." He was relaxing at home, listening to some music and preparing for the tour when I called.

"We’re going out with Metal Church this time," Pipes announced. Since the band's formation they’ve also supported notable tours by The Darkness, Black Dahlia Murder, Himsa, As I Lay Dying and more.

Believing that this was their first release, I asked about the large number of tours they already had under their belt.

"This is our first album on Roadrunner Records," Pipes reminded me. "We put out a self released EP and one other album on a smaller label before this."

I asked Pipes to tell me about the new record.

3 Inches of Blood"It was produced by Neil Kernon (Judas Priest, Queensryche) and mixed by Colin Richardson (Cannibal Corpse, Napalm Death). We recorded last August in Chicago. Colin understood our music and where we were coming from. He helped us work on our songs in the studio. But in the end there were only a few minor changes from the way we originally wrote them. We found a way to adapt to each other so we didn’t lose our band's sound."

3 Inches of Blood has a sound that is very reminiscent to old school metal. In researching this article, most every review I read on the band called out Iron Maiden as an obvious influence.

"Yes, I’ve heard that before," Pipes acknowledged. "We’re flattered to be compared to bands like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. These are bands that were important to the metal scene while we were growing up."

Vancouver has a strong and diverse music scene, but Pipes and the band felt that the music industry wasn’t exactly beating doors down looking for the next great Canadian band. Since the industry wasn’t coming to them, they decided to take their music on the road.

"Touring helped break this band. We toured across Canada in a van several times. We also made stops in the Midwest and down the west coast of America. Touring helped the band develop a following and also helped us attract the attention of record companies."

Another attribute that helped 3 Inches of Blood garner attention was the twin vocalist arrangement. While Pipes handles the clean parts, original vocalist Jamie Hooper gets down and dirty.

3 Inches of Blood"It wasn’t a conscience decision to have two vocalists," Pipes explained. "In fact, I joined the band a year after they formed. It just happened that our vocal styles compliment each other, mine being clean and his more intense. This allows us to do many things with our music. Our songs tell a story and much of the subject matter involves fantasy topics. Our style of music and the subject matter came out from the start. To us our sound was natural."

With his dog making a fuss in the background, I could tell the interview was about to end. Pipes explained that he had been relaxing and listening to music before I called, I asked Pipes what he’s been listening to.

"Pink Floyd, Dark Side of the Moon on vinyl," he revealed. "I listen to a lot of classic rock and metal. If there’s a classic album you can think of, it seems someone in this house owns it. I collect old albums so try to buy everything on vinyl. I like the sound of the music much better."

In December you can catch 3 Inches of Blood on tour with Satyricon and Infernal Majesty. Take the time to check this band out. Oh yes, and pick up the record too. You’ll be amazed.

Check out the web site and listen to the music.  http://www.3inchesofblood.com/

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