Jason De Ron's Bio
I first met Andrew Tompkins in a dark cemetery one night in 1991. I was there with Mosh (Colin Mynard) who was a friend of mine and Paramaecium’s original guitarist. They were there to photograph the grave for the cover of the Silent Carnage demo.
I got to know Andrew further when I attended a Paramaecium rehearsal as they prepared for an upcoming gig with Mortification. That same night I also met Jayson Sherlock who is now my closest friend. Around this time, following many long discussions with Mosh, I became a Christian.
When Mosh left Paramaecium in 1992, Andrew spoke to me about joining, and after a few meetings and songwriting sessions we knew it would work. From there we began writing for what would become the album "Exhumed of the Earth".
In 1992, I fell sick with labyrinthitis, a viral infection of the inner ear which impairs a person’s ability to balance. The virus was so severe that it did permanent damage to my vestibular system, leaving me with constant vertigo. This illness forced me to give up my profession as a carpenter. I have had major surgery in 1993 and 1997 to attempt to correct the problem, but the damage done by the virus is too severe, and I am left with permanent serious balance problems.
During my time with Paramaecium, I recorded the albums "Exhumed of the Earth" and "Within the Ancient Forest", and the EP "Repentance". Along with Andrew, I transcribed all the music from our first two albums for the music scores.
In 1996 I left the band. I spent the time studying Philosophy and Theology. I also studied Jazz and Jazz theory, and played a variety of musical styles including playing in the Progressive Metal/Jazz-Fusion band Soundscape with Jayson Sherlock.
In May 2002 I returned to Paramaecium as the primary guitarist. I currently work as a guitar instructor and have been a vegetarian since 1994, and am now a vegan.
Marital status I married my girlfriend of seven years, Catherine, in February 1999.
Favourite Games Ever since the first time I played StarCraft and Half-Life, I have spent every free moment playing computer games. I was the webmaster of a StarCraft website, and the leader of an online StarCraft gaming clan. After leaving the StarCraft community, I played the Baldur’s Gate Saga extensively. At the moment I play Neverwinter Nights and Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast.
Favourite Movies Since 1977 when I saw Star Wars as a 4 year old, I have been a huge Star Wars fan and seem to be one of the only fans who actually enjoyed The Phantom Menace. I have seen each movie more often than I will admit to, and can recite the dialogue to all of them.
Favourite Literature Some of my favourite authors are Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Donne, Shelley and Coleridge. I enjoy the existentialist philosophy of Søren Kierkegaard and Albert Camus amongst others.
Favourite Music Along with liking bands such as Soilwork, Meshuggah, Opeth, Planet X, On The Virge and Liquid Tension Experiment to name a few, my musical influences range from Jazz musicians such as Larry Carlton, Dave Weckl, Wes Montgomery and Miles Davis to contemporary composers such as John Williams and Jeremy Soule.
Andrew Tompkins' Bio
I live in the hills on the outskirts of Melbourne, Australia.
I was the founder of Paramaecium and the band's modern history began in 1991 when we supported Roger Martinez and Mortification (then called Light Force) on an Australian tour. Jayson Sherlock and myself had already formed a close friendship by this stage and this was strengthened during the tour. I also recorded some death vocal growls on the very first Mortification album just before the tour commenced.
Our lineup in 1991 consisted of myself on bass and vocals, Steve Palmer on drums and Mosh (Colin Mynard) on guitar. Inspired by the success of the tour and our new found following, we purchased a four track recorder and produced the Silent Carnage demo 5 months later. It was around this time that I met Jason De Ron for the first time, in a graveyard lit by moonlight. We were there to photograph a grave for the cover of the demo. It wasn't long after this that Mosh led Jason to Christ and when Mosh decided to leave the band, I approached Jason about the possibility of him taking on the guitar role. He was excited by the idea and after a few sessions together we discovered an instant rapport and our song writing styles complemented each other perfectly.
We began working on material for our first album. Soon after Jason joined the band, circumstances meant that Steve also had to leave so we were faced with doing an album without a drummer. However, Jayson Sherlock was keenly interested in what we were working on and he knew it was going to be something special, something which no other band in Australia or in the Christian scene was really doing at the time, and he offered to take on the drumming for the album. As things became difficult for him with Mortification following their second album, he decided to leave them and join Paramaecium in 1993 just before we went into the studio to record "Exhumed of the Earth".
The album was released independently by the band but following great sales and excellent reviews, it was quickly picked up for US distribution by REX Music, a major Christian label at the time with access to the general market in the US, as well as Witchhunt Records in Switzerland for the European market. The album went on to sell in excess of 10,000 units.
At the beginning of 1994 I married Elise and Jayson Sherlock was my best man. By the end of 1994 I had completed a Bachelor of Science degree with Honours in Anatomy and went on to work as a research scientist in the fields of bone marrow transplantation and reproductive immunology; a field in which I have published research in the leading US reproduction journal (read here).
In 1995 I set out to complete a novel I had been working on for some time and decided to model the next album on the storyline. We recruited Chris Burton for the band who took up rhythm guitar duties alongside Jason, and at the end of the year we recorded the "Within the Ancient Forest" album. Once again the album was financed by the band and licensed to various labels. Jason De Ron had already decided to leave the band due to illness and his other interests, but in early 1996 just as the album and novel were about to be released, Chris and Jayson also decided to leave, Chris to pursue other interests and Jayson to forge a career as a multimedia designer.
In 1996 the "Within the Ancient Forest" album and novel were released. Later, Elise and I travelled through the Middle East, visiting Biblical and historic sites in Israel, Egypt, Jordan and the West Bank.
In 1997 I left my career in science and started my desktop publishing business (Tompkins House) in earnest with a government supply contract which exists to this day. Later that year Elise and I travelled to Europe. We touched base with Tourniquet in the Netherlands before going on to meet Ian Arkley, the former guitarist of Seventh Angel, in a pub in London. He agreed to help me out with the next album, and so we spent a week staying with him in Birmingham, England. We combined material, creating songs together, and in 1998 I flew him out to Australia to record the guitar sections for "A Time to Mourn". To become even more independent, I had set up a home-based digital recording studio, "The Operating Theatre", and we completed all of the bass and guitars for the third album very quickly. For the drums I recruited my cousin, Mark Orr, an accomplished drummer in many styles but this was the first time he'd turned his hand to doom.
In 1998 I also completed a Master of Bioethics degree specialising in the moral ramifications of gene therapy with a thesis which examined the question: "Should parents alter the genes of their children?"
In 1999 the "A Time to Mourn" album was released independently. My daughter Enara was born in May.
In 2000 I became one of the Directors of an internet company, Global Research Business, which provides academic business research papers online and began doing more and more website work with my other business.
In 2000 and 2001 I began work on album number 4 with long time friend Rhino. We shared guitar responsibilities and completed most of the album. My first published short story entitled "Self-aware" was published in 2001 in Orb magazine, a speculative fiction magazine in Melbourne.
At the beginning of 2002 I bumped into Jayson Sherlock in the National Gallery of Victoria. In May I received an email from Jason De Ron who is close friends with Jayson, asking if he could rejoin the band. I instantly agreed and we got together, exchanged our visions for the future of the band and the music, and soon recorded the final guitars for album 4 with Jason providing some overdubbed guitar parts.
The rest of the album is not far away.
Marital status I have been married to Elise since 1994 and we have a 3yo daughter, Enara.
Favourite Movies I like lots of movies but the stand outs for various reasons are Schindler's List, The Fifth Element, Almost Famous, and Memento.
Favourite Literature Some of my favourite authors are Stephen King, C.S. Lewis, Arthur C. Clarke, Arthur Conan Doyle, Jeffrey Archer, and Alfred Lord Tennyson.
Favourite Music I've been a huge fan of Pink Floyd since about the age of 15, and this has opened the door to an appreciation of alternative sixties and seventies music. I also admire David Bowie, and love listening to The Church, Foo Fighters, Queen, and many more.