When Fury UK bassist Luke Appleton was recruited to the ranks of US power metal titans Iced Earth, it seemed an appropriate time for his brother Chris and band-mate Martin McNee to take some time out themselves and embark on a new project. As their new band Absolva – completed by Tom Atkinson of Vice on guitar and Dan Bate of Point Blank Fury on bass – prepare to team up with Iced Earth for a trio dates in Dublin, Belfast and Glasgow, and then hit Bloodstock, we sit down with the guitarist/vocalist and catch up with what’s happening in the Absolva camp…
Absolva is very much a new name on the scene, but yourself and Martin will be very well known to metal audiences through your time together in Fury UK. Can you explain the background to the new project?
Absolva is the start of something new, fresh and exciting. I didn’t want to drag, and replace members in Fury UK, especially as it was a very special line-up: I wanted to move on, and create something special. Absolva takes British Metal into the new era.
The good news for Fury UK fans is that the band is only ‘on hold’ at the moment, isn’t it?
That’s right. If Luke ever gets some time off, and it fits in around with what Absolva’s got going on, then we will consider doing a short run of dates. But I can’t see that happening, as we are both very busy with our projects.
So, I understand you’re busy writing for the first Absolva album: how’s that going?
All done. It’s called ‘Flames Of Justice’’. The writing process has been very quick and easy. (They’re) very strong songs with catchy choruses. Fast songs, (with) lots of guitar solos: the way you want your metal!
When can we expect the album to be released?
We’re recording the album in August. It will be released in October.
Have you inked a deal yet or are you still on the hunt for one?
Yep, (we’re) staying with Rocksector Records [the label that released Fury UK’s three albums - ‘Face Of Adversity’ (2007), ‘VR’ (2009) and ‘A Way of Life’ (2010)].
What sort of sound can we expect? Will it be recognizable to Fury UK fans or are you taking the opportunity to go in a slightly different direction?
Sure, it’s still my voice, my guitar playing, and Martin’s drumming. It sounds faster and heavier. And, of course two guitars, so (that) adds another dimension. Also two lots of backing vocals, just to make things even bigger.
You’ve previously played as a trio, but you now have a second guitarist (in Tom Atkinson): does that present a new challenge to yourself in particular, or does it take some of the pressure off you?
It’s a bit of both. Because I’ve been so used to doing everything, all the time, on the guitar: now I have two, I’m really taking advantage of it. It also means duelling guitar solos, and more harmonies – and chances for me to be more of a frontman, as well as a guitarist.
You’ll be teaming up with Luke again, albeit briefly, when you support Iced Earth (a band you’ve played with before, of course, for a handful of dates next week: I take it you’re looking forward to that, and particularly getting out and playing your new material live?
For sure! We can’t wait. We did over 30 dates with Iced Earth in Europe last year. They’re great guys. And we so can’t wait to come over to Ireland and play the shows there, as it’s somewhere where Fury UK never got to play. So, it’s gonna be special.
Thanks for taking the time to talk to us Chris: we’ll see you in Belfast…
Thank you very much.
Absolva support Iced Earth at Dublin’s Button Factory on Tuesday August 7th, Belfast’s Limelight on Wednesday August 8th and King Tut’s in Glasgow on Thursday August 9th, and then play the Jagermeister Stage at Bloodstock on Friday August 10th.
They then play the following dates in support of the release of their debut album, ‘Flames Of Justice’:
Saturday October 27th – Radcliffe Civic Hall, Manchester
Friday November 2nd – Trillian’s, Newcastle
Saturday November 3rd – Yardbirds, Grimsby
Wednesday November 7th – Corporation, Sheffield
Thursday November 8th – The Croft, Bristol
Friday November 9th – The Underworld, Camden
Saturday November 10th – Asylum 2, Birmingham
For further information, and to keep up to date, check out Absolva’s new website,, or like them on Facebook, at