El Paso Musician Kevin Leyva Shows His Love for Metallica
Metallica is very much loved all over the world & especially here in El Paso. In fact, one El Paso musician loves them so much, he's been known as "The Metallica Guy". His name is Kevin Leyva.
Kevin's love of Metallica is clearly shown on his social media, & after talking to him, his love for Metallica was made even more clearer. "I got into Metallica at the age of 8 years old. The song that really resonated with me was Seek & Destroy. That intro riff was INSANE. I liked it so much it inspired me to pick up the guitar & learn how to play. And don't get me started with the bridge riff to Fade to Black."
Even when you go to his YouTube channel, most of videos are Metallica-related, mainly involved with the production of their albums. "I've always been obsessed with Metallica's production on their albums. The raw guitar tone off of Kill 'Em All, the electrifying distortion & wah pedal bass lines from Ride the Lightning, the crunchy chugs from Master of Puppets, the amazing drum & guitar tones from ...And Justice For All, the huge sounding production of The Black Album...I always told myself 'I want to sound exactly how they sound on the album'... so I invested in all kinds of amp sims & EQ matching software to try to nail their guitar tone & drum programs to match Lars's drum sounds. Then I started experimenting with existing songs of theirs & altered the guitar tones to make it sound like their previous records or more recent records."
His playing even got him noticed by famous YouTuber, Jared Dines (with over 1 million subscribers), on his own music channel back in 2019. Needless to say, Kevin was pretty excited at that opportunity: "He posted a tablature on his Instagram. Basically he wanted his audience to film their interpretation of the tabs conjunction with a drum beat he provided. All for a chance to be featured on his YouTube channel. I seized the opportunity, came up with something I felt went with the drum groove &... evidently, I was chosen & got a lot of amazing feedback in the comment section." You can see Kevin playing at the 4:36 mark in the video.
Kevin has also been recording his own music since 2014 (his song "Code Red" has been heard on Q Connected), drawing inspiration from bands like Lamb of God, Gojira, Meshuggah, Periphery, & of course...Metallica. He also does freelance gigs on Fiverr; making jingles for businesses, mixing gigs, drum programming, being a session guitarist & making his own beats. Before we wrapped up our interview, Kevin did want to say one last thing: "I'd tell Metallica thank you for creating amazing content that inspired millions including myself & for paving the way for other metal bands. I hope to one day create something that'll inspire a fraction of the people that they have".