Make Them Suffer play 2020 UNIFY Gathering in Victoria.
The sixth instalment of Australia’s heaviest camping festival, UNIFY Gathering is approaching fast.
The 2020 edition features two massive returns with Architects and The Ghost Inside headlining the festival, as well as a rich amount of home-grown heroes such as Northlane, Polaris, Tonight Alive and Perth bone-crushing metal outfit, Make Them Suffer.
Make Them Suffer are UNIFY Gathering favourites; they have performed at the 2016 and 2018 festival, with the latter being especially memorable for the band due to a specific viral moment captured on video in the crowd. “I think that was the year that people broke out the set of Uno cards during our set,” vocalist Sean Harmanis laughs.
“That was super cool, someone brought a deck of Uno and they were playing it in the pit to one of our songs ‘Widower’. That was rad. I think triple j ended up calling them. You can see on the new UNIFY poster, the flyer for it, there’s a little deck of Uno cards in the bottom right corner, which I think is paying homage to that; it’s super cool.”
While recently in America, Sean and the band managed to get tickets to see exclusive UNIFY Gathering Saturday night headliners The Ghost Inside, for their triumphant return show in LA after a tragic road accident in 2015. “It was quite an emotional night. Just hearing the stories they were telling about everything they’ve been through.
"I think my new favourite person is the drummer’s dad because he actually engineered the device that allowed his son to play drums again, which is nuts because every doctor told him he would never be able to [drum again]. It was huge, there were so many people there and it was a real strong vibe. You could see some people tearing up a bit.”
Make Them Suffer are one of the few Australian bands to sign with American label Rise Records, with one band on the label being a particular favourite for Sean.
“It was pretty crazy for us. It was our first signing with an international record label, which for us was a really big deal and so many of our members are fans of so many of the bands on that label, we’re in good company.
“For me personally, Silverstein who are also playing at UNIFY; they were a big gateway band into the whole heavy genre for me. So to be on the same label as them is pretty rad and mind-blowing. I’m going to hop straight off stage and walk side stage and watch them play some of my favourites from back in the day, but at the same time their new music is really great as well.”
Make Them Suffer’s latest single ‘Hollowed Heart’ is their most confrontational song to date and is the first preview of what’s to come from the band in 2020. “We have actually finished recording the new album. ‘Hollowed Heart’ is not on the album, it was just a standalone single, the same as [previous single] ‘27’.
“Definitely a new album from us and new music coming soon, we’re pumped about it. I’ve been listening to these demos and mixes for ages, I’m so excited to show everyone.”
UNIFY Gathering attendees may get lucky and hear the first taste of new music at the festival, but Sean’s not giving anything away yet. “We might, we might not. I’m not actually sure, we haven’t been through our new set list and what it is going to be for that festival yet, but it’s a possibility.”
Make Them Suffer play UNIFY Gathering, which takes place in Tarwin Lower (VIC) 9-12 January. They also play a home-town Christmas show at Badlands Bar (Perth) 21 December.