Contrary to what some may think, Prowler isn’t out to scare you.
Despite the local band’s flair for making classic metal tunes in the theme of classic horror films, the trio of Patrick Best (vocals/guitar), Jak Sumwalt (drums) and Shawn Bruce (bass) are actually all about love.
Prowler performs at the Island Bar in Surfside
Prowler Release Party
with Laissez-Faire, Take Cover and Hawaiian Shirt Day
| 10 p.m., Saturday
| Island Bar & Grill, 2272 Glenns Bay Road, Surfside Beach
| $5 for under 21, no cover for 21+
“We all love horror movies and we all love metal,’” said Best of his band’s decision to pursue the mash-up of media which has led to a string of tunes centered around films such as “Night of the Living Dead,” “The Lost Boys” and “Halloween.”
Saturday, the band will celebrate two of these tunes with a CD Release Party for “Prowler Pt. 1” at the Island Bar & Grill in Surfside Beach.
During the show, the band will be selling the EP for $5 a piece, debuting its zombie-themed video for “The Dead Rise Again” and performing alongside a slew of other local band including Hawiian Shirt Day, Take Cover and Laissez Faire.
Though they’ve had modest success playing locally since forming in September, this show will serve as a sort of coming out party for the group. They hope to build buzz by continuing to release material in bite-sized, episodic chunks that can serve as sort of collector’s items for their growing fanbase.
While they admit their music may not appeal to everyone, Prowler says their not afraid of driving fans away with their horror-driven tunes or classic thrashing style.
“Publicity is publicity, whether it’s positive or negative,” says Best. “If we scare people into listening to our music to see what it’s about and then they realize there’s nothing bad about it, that’s OK with us.”
But whether the band’s unique style is considered terrifying or terrific, for the band members its all about making music they enjoy.
“It’s purely just fun for us,” said Best. “I like the suspenseful nature of a horror movie and I like being scared. The whole concept has always just intrigued me.”
Myrtle Beach Music: Prowler is, from left, Jak Sumwalt, Patrick Best, Shawn Bruce (Photo by Scott Smallin)
Building the band
The concept that would become Prowler rose from a chance encounter through a friend, when Best was looking for a drummer for his previous band Live Like Murder.
After quickly picking up what Best had laid down for him Sumwalt joined the band and the two played together for about three years a school and relocation pulled the band apart. However, after five years and multiple moves the two came back together.
“I lived in Raleigh for awhile, but eventually I decided I didn’t want to be a guitar salesman anymore so I started writing songs,” says Best. “That’s when I wrote this riff.”
'Prowler, Pt. 1'
Here's a preview of the band's upcoming release. Buy your copy online here, listen to the songs below:
"The Dead Rise Again"
"Friday the 13th"
Also, check out our
for a free download of "The Dead Rise Again."
When Best moved back to the area in January to pursue a Masters degree at Coastal Carolina, he took the same riff that had stuck with him throughout the move and used it as the inspiration to start a metal band with Sumwalt as the backbone.
The riff which sparked the genesis of Prowler became “The Dead Rise Again,” the band’s first single and one of the two songs on the album being released Saturday.
The band recorded the track at Brian McKenzie’s Music Factory, and soon after releasing it six months later, bassist Shawn Bruce (Circles In Autumn, Kill843) caught wind of what they were doing.
While things didn’t take off right away, Sumwalt eventually convinced Bruce to see Prowler for himself following one of the final shows at the now-defunct downtown venue The Basement.
“I was interested, but once I checked it out myself I was like ‘Yeah, I need to get into that,’” said Bruce. “It was a different style of metal and something new for me. I had always wanted to do more of the classic style.”
Once the trio had settled on its lineup there was only one thing left to do: choose a name.
“We were big fans of AC/DC and Iron Maiden, and we knew we wanted something with one word that was easy to remember,” said Best. The name is a tribute to both bands, from the song “Night Prowler” off of AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” and “Prowler” off of Iron Maiden’s 1979 self-titled debut album.