Can you tell us about the origin of the band name, a history of the band and a little bit about the various members?
The origin of our name, Haunter, goes back about 15 years actually. It was originally the title of a demo Jake and I wrote for a past project, but it was never recorded or released. We decided to use it as our band name. Sadly, and despite popular belief it is not derived from the Pokemon franchise although that would have been a simpler answer. Haunter was formed in May of 2021, originally as a solo project of our frontman, Thomas Grim. However, the project wasn’t made public until the release of “Dance Gothica” our first hit single and music video from our debut EP, The Grim Matrix in May of 2022. Around the time we released our debut EP, we decided that Haunter should become a full band,
rather than a solo project. We recruited dark trap artist, BLK//HRT (Michael Gilhuber) on drums, and Sonny Vega on guitar. Completing the band is Jacob Stone, the other founding member, primary songwriter, and bassist.
Are you all from the same area? How did you get together as a band?
Tom, Jake, and Sonny are from West Allis, Wisconsin. Michael is from Cascade, Wisconsin. We are Wisconsinites all the way! Frontman Thomas Grim and Songwriter Jacob Stone are basically the Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons of the band. Together, they’ve been making music since high school. Michael and Sonny had been members of our old blackened deathcore band, Archiver. So, it was a no brainer to add them to the mix. All of us love the same music and share the same goals and aspirations. When it came to finding the right members for Haunter, everything sort of just fell perfectly into place like it was fate or destiny.
Who are your favourite artists/bands and how have they influenced your own sound?
KISS, AFI, Motionless In White, and Cradle Of Filth — to name a few! These bands are why we love being theatrical and atmospheric musically, and during our live performances. We’ve learned so much from them and can only hope that someday we can get the chance to thank them personally.
Did you always have the ambition to be a musician and in a band or did you originally have other plans?
There was never such a thing as an “other plan” for us. All of us have had this ambition since we were toddlers. Music is forever entwined with our hearts and souls. Couldn’t get away from it even if we tried.
What songs or albums are on your current playlist?
Tom: Cradle Of Filth’s album Existence Is Futile. Cattle Decapitation’s album Terrasite, and The Backstreet Boy’s album A Very Backstreet Christmas. : : Sonny: My most recently, and most frequently played tracks are: 10:35 by Tiesto and Tate McRae, All My Life by Lil Durk and J. Cole, and UP (LIKE AN INSOMNIAC) by XXTENTACION Jacob: The albums on my current playlist are: Gallery of Suicide by Cannibal Corpse. House of God by King Diamond. Retrograde by Aborted.Terrasite by Cattle Decapitation and Nothing by Meshuggah. Michael: Amongst the low, and The empty by Signs of the Swarm. The whole discography of Sworn In. Transylvania 90210 and Horrifier by Wednesday 13. Women and Children Last by The Murderdolls. All Hope Is Gone by Slipknot. Feast Of Ashes by Dying Fetus. Jar by Superheaven. Everything Bleeds by Crown Magnetar and Gloomlord by Worm.
Do you sing in the shower?
Yes, the shower is nice to sing in, but we have a question for you… Have you ever sang while taking a bubble bath? It’s much better trust us.
Do you have any plans for the band for this year and into next year?
Beyond any shadow of a doubt. We’ll be performing around Wisconsin at multiple venues and festivals (especially the spooky ones!\y), including Slamoween 4, Saturday October 28th, 2023, in Sheboygan.
We also have plans to write, record, and release even more music. Within the next few months we are planning to record brand new music video, and we’re currently in talks for our very first tour! You’re the first to hear that last bit of info!
Do you currently have any new songs/albums ready to be released?
We have actually over-written and recorded plenty of music, just to be safe, and because we love too, and because we can, haha! Our next single to be released will be “A New Voice For The Mirror” from The Real Phantom EP, featuring Sonja Romanov of The Maiden Voyage, and will be released this August or September.
If you could play at any venue in the world where would you choose?
It’s not exactly a venue per se, but rather a particular festival… OZZFEST!
We would love nothing more than to see Ozzfest return in full glory and get to share the stage with legends such as: Black Sabbath, Dimmu Borgir, The Black Dahlia Murder (RIP Trevor), Bleeding Through, Iron Maiden, etc. etc. etc!
Do you have a favourite album? If so, what is it?
As a band, our collective favorites are: Cradle Of Filth, Motionless In White, AFI, and KISS. We love each of their discographies because each release always has something new to offer which is something we strive for in our releases. However… The Backstreet Boys album, Millennium and Hybrid Theory by Linkin Park come close!
Do you have any guilty pleasure songs/albums?
NONE. We are never afraid to let people know what we love and what we love is everything from Eminem and t.A.T.u. all the way to Cannibal Corpse and Dark Funeral.
If you were putting together the greatest show on earth, who would be playing?
First of all, the event would literally be called: THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH, and it would consist of:
KISS, MERCYFUL FATE & KING DIAMOND, CRADLE OF FILTH & DEVILMENT, MOTIONLESS IN WHITE, AFI & BLAQK AUDIO and HAUNTER
Headlining at Madison Square Garden while Wrestlemania is happening at the same time! Music and wrestling! Can we get a HELL YEAH?!
Can you remember the first album you bought with your own money? What was it and do you still have it?
Thomas: I remember buying Sisqo’s Unleash The Dragon album because I loved the hit single “Thong Song”. 7Ji. Do I still have it? No, but I would LOVE to have it on vinyl!
Sonny: I don’t remember exactly the first album with my own money. But the last was Red Death Sabaoth by Danzig.
Jake: First album I remember buying was Zao – legendary. It broke during a move. Michael: I want to say it was either Iron Maiden’s Number of the Beast, or Korn·s Greatest Hits Vol. 1, and I think I still own both.
As your fans will be reading this, is there any message you would like to send out to them?
Life is a cruel game we all must play… We just hope that our tunes make things a little easier, just as our favorite music does for us.
Finally, let us know all your social media sites so your fans, old and new, can find and follow/like you!
You can find everything you need in our Link Tree at: https://linktr.ee/hauntermusic666
We, at The Metal Asylum, would like to thank you for your time. Is there is anything further that you would like to add?
To The Metal Asylum, we thank you for this opportunity. We truly appreciate this. This was fun and hopefully sometime we can do this in person.
As for our fans old and new thank you for reading and please don’t hesitate to say hello to us when we come to a city near you!
This interview is the property of The Metal Asylum