On 17 May, Primitai celebrated ten years with vocalist Guy Miller and guitarist Srdjan Bilic with a gig at the Lounge, Camden. “In March 2009 Primitai parted ways with their first frontman (who also played guitar), and through vague ‘friend of friend’ connections Guy and I were drafted in on vocals and guitars,” explains Srdjan, “so that the band could fulfil their gig commitments, the first of which was at The Unicorn in Camden. Shortly after the set we were taken to the smoking area and offered ‘the job’, and the rest is history. Primitai were already booked for a national Battle Of The Bands competition which we then attacked with all we had and came out winners. The £5,000 prize was invested in the 2010 album ‘The Line Of Fire’ which lead to our first UK tours, and festivals such as High Voltage, Bloodstock and Hard Rock Hell in 2011 alone. Over the years it’s been the Guy and Srdjan partnership which has held firm through the next three albums (2013’s ‘Rise Again’, 2016’s ‘Night Brings Insanity’ and the first Dissonance release ‘The Calling’) and through all the ups and downs the band’s been through. Primitai are now proud to be settled in its longest-lasting line-up, completed by Spanish virtuoso Sergio [Girón] and lifetime drum and bassist duo Jonny [Warren] and Scott [Miller]. We celebrated this by doing a mammoth Primitai set honouring all of the albums over the years, on a bill with three of the best UK metal bands we could get and metal connoisseur DJs, in a really cool Camden venue with a great live sound.” Can’t get much better than that!
And that’s not all – Srdjan has been a busy guy. “This was the second year in a row I celebrated my birthday by gathering a dozen or so musician friends to do a guest opening set at Camden’s Metalworks live music night. One of the highlights was playing Riot’s ‘Thundersteel’ with Toledo Steel’s Tom Potter, who did a perfect rendition of the solo!”
And finally, Srdjan admits that he’d always wanted to do what he calls the “Los Angeles heavy metal pilgrimage. I finally bit the bullet and booked flights for April 2019. It was every cliché in the best possible way, straight off the plane to the Sunset Strip to watch Doro and Metal Church at the Whisky (at 6am UK time), then Rainbow, and then visits to The Troubadour, Viper Room, etc, passing the strip clubs mentioned in Mötley Crüe’s ‘Girls, Girls, Girls’.
“I’d heard of an regular event called Ultimate Jam Night at the Whisky A Go Go as footage of famous people guesting always did the rounds, and it crossed my mind that it could be a chance to get onstage at a legendary venue which would complete whole LA experience. I was put in touch with the manager, sent an email with a few videos and was kindly given a few songs on the show’s revolving door line-up. Backstage on the night I was amazed to see the drummer I’d been grouped with wearing a Dissonance t-shirt, and it indeed turned out to be a Trans-Atlantic labelmate – Roby Vitari of Mindwars! A great guy and great drummer. We did a fun rendition of ‘Kings And Queens’ by Aerosmith. The overall standard of the LA musicians is phenomenal, and I really felt like I pulled off a huge blag, getting them to let an unknown chancer from London play a few tunes!