Jersey Beat Music Fanzine

DARK CASTLE: Stevie Floyd emerges as a new high priestess of metal

By Ben Balanoff

I recently had the pleasure of seeing Florida metal band Dark Castle live at Reggie’s Rock Club in Chicago. After the show, vocalist and guitarist Stevie Floyd was nice enough to grant us an interview. Enjoy…

Q: Having come from Florida, a region that’s produced a lot of heavy and relevant metal bands in the last few decades (as well as some interesting scenes), are there any hometown Floridian bands, venues, etc. that you were influenced by growing up?

There have been countless influential bands to come out of Florida. Rob and I were heavily inspired by Death and still are. They were so innovative for their time, yet so rooted within the truest form of metal. I grew up in Jacksonville. There was an amazing venue called the Milkbar where they had shows almost every night of the week. I played my first show there when I was 14. I used to sneak out of my window on school nights to see shows all of the time until I got caught. Rob is from South Florida- Ft Lauderdale. He was also in bands from a super young age. I’ve seen videos of him shredding and sweeping on guitar when he was 12. He was definitely a child prodigy.

Q: Whats the best/worst/craziest thing you’ve ever experienced while on tour?

Best…we were in Michigan and this amazing dude showed up right before we were about to play with these necklaces he made for us out of copper and bone…very detailed, intricate, woven copper through these huge vertebrae bones. We put them on immediately and played. Craziest... karaoke involving Godsmack and Hanson.

Q: Currently, what have you been listening to? Anything at present that you’re hooked on?

I listen to Death almost every day. I am and have been completely addicted to Lurker of Chalice, YOB, Bathory, US Christmas, Warning, Lifelover, Drudkh, Rwake, the newest Burzum rules, old Scorpions, Dead Can Dance, Ministry, Soundgarden, WovenHand, and the newest Alice in Chains.

Q: One record that changed your life?

Every Death album

Q: What direction do you see Dark Castle taking in the next 5 years?

I don’t like predicting the future but I can say that we are always growing musically, always putting everything that we have into writing the most pure and authentic music possible. It is all that we know and all that drives us. Lots of touring I’m sure and never ending writing/recording. We just finished recording a new album that we feel very good about…and we can’t wait to play it live.

Q: What inspired you to be a musician?

I was obsessed with music since I was a child. My mother sang opera and my father had an extensive record collection. He introduced me to a lot of 70’s prog rock/metal. I started making mix tapes and mix videos when I was 8. My mother had me taking piano lessons by the time I was 5 years old. I absolutely loved classical piano…until I got my hands on a guitar…then it was all over.

Q: How do you feel your sound has evolved since first forming Dark Castle?

It took us a few years to really melt and mold our styles and creative forces together. Amongst our differences, music always brought us together. We were always incredibly inspired by multicultural scales and intense time signatures. I feel like with our demo and EP we were still trying to figure out how to tie together all of our influences. Our last album started to tap into what we were trying to convey. It’s amazing how we’ve really slowed it down, gotten simpler …yet more dynamic at the same time I feel. This new recording I think is fully capturing what we were meant to do musically and also vocally. All I can hope for is to grow more and more, and to be open to all inspiration that comes our way…and to then pass it on through our music to everyone that listens.

Q: I understand you used to be a tattoo artist. Do you still pursue your art when you’re not busy with Dark Castle? (And if so, is there a link to your work online?)

Yes, I’ve been tattooing for 9 years. I love it. I have an appointment only studio in Florida. I stay pretty busy when we’re not on tour.

Q: One thing you wanna do before you die?

Record an album with everyone that has ever inspired me.

Q: I’ve heard you described as “the hottest woman in metal” and I’m curious- when people say things like that, do you find it flattering, or do you resent being potentially looked at differently because you’re a woman in a scene dominated primarily by males?

I find it very flattering, and I am honored. I feel like as long as you are being true to yourself and writing music from your heart and soul in its most honest pure form…always pushing boundaries…always drawing inspiration from endless sources…then how can it be a bad thing? I am used to being around mostly guys, I always have been. Yes I am a woman, but I’m just a human going through the same motions of life as any man…we’re all just here doing the same thing…trying to cope and make life fun. All I can hope is for more and more girls to push music past its limits, expand minds and horizons beyond its present state.

 is an independently published music fanzine covering punk, alternative, ska, techno and garage music, focusing on New Jersey and the Tri-State area. For the past 25 years, the Jersey Beat music fanzine has been the authority on the latest upcoming bands and a resource for all those interested in rock and roll.

Jersey Beat Podcast

Home | Contact Jersey Beat | Sitemap

©2010 Jersey Beat & Not a Mongo Multimedia

Music Fanzine - Jersey Beat