After releasing two singles last year Perth’s Make Way for Man had a bit of an unplanned hiatus. That’s all about to change with the band announcing that their latest EP ‘RITES’ will be heading our way on Sept 18th.

Guitarist Drew Shepherd says that the EP “…explores the idea of not overcoming fear by succeeding always, but knowing there are bound to be ups and downs in life – and having to be ready to handle them the best way you personally know how to.

I caught up with Drew to see what MWFM have been brewing for us.

It’s been awhile between EP’s, Evolve and Repair coming out in 2016

Yeah it’s been awhile due to line up changes and life. Things took a lot longer than it should have unfortunately. Now we’re all set so we’re going be pumping out music a lot quicker.

Is there another single dropping before the EP?

It’s kind of worked out a bit odd. I initially planned two singles and that was all.  We released the first one ‘Ideations’ (featuring Sean Harmanis of Make Them Suffer), in 2019 and then we released a second one and then we had a big break because the EP was still being finished. Then the EP stalled so we ended up leaving it a few months with nothing, so we were like ok now we need to release another single. We’ve released the title track ‘Rites’ this week.

Our new EP Rites comes out at the end of September and we have a few more things to release in the leadup to it. We also got quite a few new songs too, well new for the fans! We’ve sat on them for a while plus we’ve got a whole lot of new material that we are doing right now so things should happen quicker once the EP is released. There’s no slowing down this time, no three-year break.

Because you guys are Perth based it’s probably a good time to be releasing as so many people are using social platforms to suss new music due to covid

Yeah I hope so. It’s weird, I can’t see any real trend with what we’ve released so far. Some have hit, and some haven’t had the traction what we thought they were going to. Then we released Fireflies. It was just going to be a mess around, we thought we might get a few thousand views or something and it had 400,000 odd hits. It’s hard to predict it, with what people want to hear as far as what we are doing.

Where do you guys get your inspiration from? I saw that you’ve supported some stellar bands.

We did a really nice run of shows supporting some of the bands that I grew up loving like Meshuggah and Periphery. We met all those guys so that was pretty cool. The down side to that is that because Perth is usually the last on the tour they’re all really tired and don’t really want to party!!

All the guys have pretty varied taste to be honest, seeing as I write all of the riffs I guess a lot of those come from what I like to listen too. Our vocalists don’t listen to the same thing, they’re listening to completely different types of bands so they put their spin on it which for me works out well because we get a bit more of a  unique spin rather than being a Periphery copy!!! We get a bit of variation on it and some new ideas even from different genres to mix it up a bit.

That seems to be the way a lot of bands are heading at the moment which I’m loving. It means bands are recording the music that they want to play instead of worrying about being able to slot into a genre

That’s always been a big thing with me which is why I never really thought we would ever get as far as we have. I want to play the music that I want to play. I don’t really care whether people really love it or not, it’s great if they do but I always thought let’s just play whatever we want to play. To actually get somewhere with it to the point where we have was pretty surprising and I was like wow people actually like what we are doing and I don’t have to sacrifice the style of music I’m playing. I can play what I actually want to, and people will listen. That was good for me as a musician.

I think the true music lovers appreciate that, that a band is willing to not compromise or conform

That’s another thing I think with us is I always thought to mix it up as much as possible. Like even on the EP I would say once it’s out and people hear it, it’s pretty varied. Ideations is very deathcore in its sound and the latest single is techier, I’m not sure what you would call it!! I hope to keep going with that varied sound, the latest single even has some rap on it. I’m happy to grab stuff from every genre and try and incorporate it and make it something a bit different. You have to be a little bit different these days to stand out.

Have you guys all been in bands before?

Yes and we’ve had a few line-up changes over the time. The main guys that have been around the longest were all previously involved in their own projects. We played shows together a lot in different bands and it just worked out well at the time. Everyone was either in between bands or were bored with what they were doing. We all sort of came together pretty quickly. It only took a couple of weeks and everyone was like yep let’s do it. We just jumped on and decided to do one track to test the water and it did really well, so we thought okay let’s just keep going with this. The guy I started the band with, our original drummer, he was from a band called Saviour and then he ended up leaving and going to drum for Make Them Suffer. We got another drummer, the bass player and I were in an instrumental band together and both singers were in their own bands We just wanted to see how it would go and it turned out that people wanted to hear it so we kept going.

And your writing process is that a collaborative thing with the whole band?

For this one all the music was probably me really, the drums was mostly me as well. I actually play drums as well. The vocals I’m terrible at so I leave that up to the vocalists because they work well together. They bounce ideas off each other so it’s pretty much just me and the vocalists and everyone else plays their part once the music is written.

Finally who are some of your favourite aussie acts

 I haven’t been listening to much music lately, mainly just my own while we get the EP ready!

There’s a band called Patient Sixty-Seven, another Perth band and they’re pretty cool. I like what they are doing its definitely something I’m enjoying

East coast wise I’m a bit out of the loop. I mean Polaris obviously we did a few shows with them before they blew up. Circles are another one, we’ve played with them a few times too.

Rites comes out on September 18th and you can pre-order it here :

Check out Make Way For Man’s latest single Rites below:


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