Tuesday, December 15, 2009

EXPLOSIVE KIDS: Part II

Hari ini lepas balik dari kerja aku berehat sekejap, lepas mandi terus memandu ke Jitra ke rumah Diken. Kronologi amp bass aku yang meletup hari itu, bersambung lagi. Kedai Indera Jaya Electrical Kangar dasar penipu, dah 2 bulan amp aku tersadai di kedainya, apa pun tidak dibuatnya. Yang membuatkan aku marah sangat bila dia berjanji, dari minggu ke minggu hingga aku hilang sabar. Kemarin, selepas maki hamun di kembalikan amp aku. Disebabkan aku bengang dengan kos masa dan tenaga yang aku terpaksa tanggung, terpaksa aku ambil tindakan sebgai ganti kerugian yang aku alami. Tindakan itu terpaksa aku rahsiakan di dalam blog ini. Hehe!

Jadi selepas ambil Diken sebagai teman, kami berlepas ke Alor Setar jam 12.30 tengahari. Sampai sahaja di Sze Chan ( atau Shin Chan kata Redza ) amp aku diperiksa, ambil slip, beli satu clamp untuk tambah splash cymbal pada drumset aku, kami pun ke Hard N Heavy store yang dimiliki oleh CS Storming Steels. Sayangnya, kedainya masih belum beroperasi. Kami sampai disitu jam 1.30 petang, mengikut papan tanda didepan, Hard N Heavy beroperasi mulai jam 2.00 petang. Jadi makan tengahari dulu di Restoran Keong @ Nasi Padang kegemaran Diken. Lawak bila tokey kedai tegur baju Thin Lizzy yang aku pakai. “Dia bukan Poser” kata Diken. Wahahaha!


Selepas makan kami sekali lagi ke Hard N Heavy, namun masih belum dibuka. Jadi selepas hantar Diken, baca Metal Hammer dekat rumah dia. Aku selamat sampai ke rumah jam 4.00 petang.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

RECORDING OF OUR OWN PUMPKIN

Local indie band, OUR OWN PUMPKIN set a recording in Faithcraft Studio for their band new song called “Porak Peranda”. The recording took more than 4 hours to complete and took me 1 hours mixing. The result sounds wonderful, a good blends of Brit pop with retro-approach ala OASIS and HUJAN. But the unique part is their vocalist!. Have a listen for yourself...


Saturday, November 7, 2009

KEMENYAN FANZINE: Interview with Varathron


Recalling back those days when Rotting Christ became so popular around here. We all remember every bands from Malaysia were into Greek’s sound, and believe me I’ve seen a punk band jamming “Fourth Knight Of Revelation” in rehearsal room we used to play! Ha! Ha! Let bygone be bygone, Rotting Christ has lost their magick somewhere, but let me tell you there is a survivors from those days... those glorious days. And they need no introduction since they’re the VARATHRON, which still uphold the banner of Greek Black Metal high since 1988. I am glad to have Stephan, the original vocalist here for some questions...

How’s Athen today? Is everything went all well with the band and surrounding?
Hail my brother Rammy!!! Well, I live in Ioannina, a city northern to Athens with a great nature and monuments!! It’s a city 450km from Athens. About the band is so strong now!! A new album surprised a lot of people and we recieved so many great reviews!! Perfect!

I must thanks you to Varathron for giving me the great music again. I praise “Crowreign” as a good album, but I do not agree if someone said it is back to the root style. I means, there alots of progression can be heard in that album. And of course, it is heavier than the last 2 albums.
I think our new attack is a pure Black Metal with a so apocryphal and occult feelings. Also, some riffs are ‘back on the root’ style! The general ‘view’ of album is one more step from our last release. Something more mysterious, something more evil, something more abysmal!!!!!

Tell me about the new line-up? Do you satisfied with these gladiators works?
Well, the new members are so great and faithful on our music. Are two young crazy musicians who are fans of Varathron for years! So, I think was more easy to working for us. Yes, I’m totally satisfied with them!! Are metal maniacs with so ‘hungry’ for work, for creation!!!!

I think, band like Varathron don’t stick to just one studio. What kind of condition that you really pay attention? Why? I remember in the old days, Unisound Studio have gave huge identity to Black Metal bands.. you have also done a recording there, right?
All these years we had recorded on a different studios! I think one very good is the ‘Live Studio’ and of course our new studio ‘Praxis Studio’! About Unisound Studio is not exist anymore like the label and the Storm Studio too! I think th new studio have a great sound-materials for great productions! ‘Praxis’ rules!!!!

The great thing about Varathron is they don’t overuse the keys like Gothic Metal bands. Will you going to keep it that way? And you guys are quite technical this time!
Well, Varathron use the synths only for more atmosphere. Is my pure opinion. The Gothic bands use the synths for dark melody, is a different way. Also, our new album have some technical parts, cause the new members coming from music-high school! It’s not a good thing, what you say?

I say it sound evil and grandeur! Even untill now, your harsh growls still remained. You also used some distorted voices without losing the brutal feelings. Do you satisfied with the result?
Well, my voice is total natural! A lot of people they ask me if I smoke, if I put some effects on my voice, if I put some distortion and more! The answer is no! This is my natural voice! Beside I hate smoke cause I’m a kickboxing fighter! I make a natural life, as I can!

Well, I’m happy to see you guys still wearing those leathers, inverted cross, pentagram. I means these days metal bands more into bermuda pants, jogging shoes, etc.. which is not metal at all...
As you know I born and grow up with real metal sound not a false shits! I like leather, the magic symbol ( like the shirt Blasphemy I wear on picture of our album). I think metal music is a style of life, a great philosophy not just a poor fashion for empty-brain people! I hate fashion and all the music-mafia for money!! Are polluted our metal scene!! Crush ‘em all!!

Do you know that in the early 90’s almost 80% Malaysian metal bands sounded like they’re from Greece! Now, you know how big is band like Rotting Christ in Malaysia. I think, Sakis has visited Malaysia in those days. So, when will Varathron going to tour Malaysia?
I have a total respect to our friends in Malaysia! I received tons of letters all of these years and I have so many friends there!! I hope to visit your place on the next months!!! Beside, I like your homeland, the culture and the ancient monuments!! We’ll start playing live-after some years and it will be great. We have a second guitarist and a bass player for that!! So, we so strong and aggressive now!!

On behalf of your band, tell me.. during the process of songwriting, did you care for what the fans would like to hear or just do what yourself wanted to hear?
When we create an album we want a good result, not only for us but for our friends-fans who we respects all these years! So, when I wrote the lyrics or we wrote the music of a song, we want something who they give a satisfaction to us, first! Then I hope to give a satisfaction to our friends. Beside when we create something is impossible to us, we know the final result. To know, if the fan like or dislike the album, but always we try the best, eternally!!!

What would you do if you weren’t playing with Varathron? Ever imagine your life without music? Tell me about your radioshows?
My life is full of music! I have a metal radioshow, called “Twilight Zone 98.7” FM. Also I playing on another band on my city and I make some productions too. Also my freetime is so full, I training on kickboxing, I read books, I wrote poems. Of course all the mailing of Varathron and I watch movies!

Last words to your Malaysian fans?
Thanks so much for your supports! I salute all the metal maniacs there, embrace our occult music, beware for our live-invasion!! The beast return on the road!!! Hail and Kill!!

Stephen has been a great pal of mine till today. We mostly talk about martial arts we’re into. He is interested in Muay Thai I’ve been practising long time ago and really wanted to visit Malaysia to see and learn martial arts in here. Contact this great guy and check out their new album!

click to visit Varatron myspace

Saturday, October 31, 2009

KEMENYAN FANZINE: Interview With Sarcastic



SARCASTIC was formed in the middle of September 1992, which is by now they are a forefather of extreme metal in Kedah, known in ancient time as the capital kingdom of Malay land called ‘Nagara Kedah’. The band in the old days was heavily influenced by ROTTING CHRIST, VARATHRON, NECROMANTIA and MOONSPELL without forgetting the old masters like SODOM, MORBID ANGEL, SORCOFAGO and BATHORY. They recorded a debut demo “Gather For Last” in April 1994 which contains 3 tracks but only available for friends.


This interview was done in 1998 and its seem the band has been laid down to rest today. Anyway, you might get an interesting info here...

Anything to say before we started this interview?
Hi there, I’m Evilheart here which will answer this interview and hopefully you’ll enjoy to read this.

How’s the “Demo 1998” going on? Tell us about the recording, selling and your satisfactory?
“No Mercy at All” was recorded at Kris Studio, Alor Setar and we took in about 2 days to finish all of it. So far, the selling is quite good for us. Untill this interviews were answered, almost 100 copies were sold... I guess and it mostly spreaded around the north region. We also satisfied with this demo compared to the previous one (Gather For Last) which can’t reach our satisfaction.

How do you describe in the demo? I means the lyrics? Tell something about all the bewitching hymns?
Our lyrics is mainly discussing about something like ancient wars, mystical tales/art, vengeance, violence, life, killing, history, etc.. which we thought suit to perform it within metal music. Yes! We believe that metal needs something hard, violence, full of cruelty, etc.. and so on with the lyrics.

How about your sound, people said Sarcastic’s sound similiar to Greek’s sound. Do you agree?
Frankly, I don’t agree with that but in the same time I accept what they want to say about it. Maybe “Into Ritual” have alot of similiarities within Greece sound, but for me not all those songs in “No Mercy At All” influenced by Greece’s bands. The other songs like “ The Hour Of The Battlefield”, “Devilkiss” may be different compared to Greece’s sound. Anyway it’s up to you to decide...

Oh, I almost forget to ask you about the band’s history? Why do you form this band?
About our band history I think you better see it in our bio. And the reason why we forming this band is simply to show our expression/taste/feeling, etc in metal and also to give to the U/G scene what we’ve got and of course we want to share it with them. We did this scene we start and still do it untill now...

What do you think about Malaysian Death Metal scene? And what do you think about old-school metal which became fashion lately?
Death metal scene actually is still alive but no as the same as ever because nowadays our scene is highly recovered by black, gothic, atmospheric, ambient, etc.. . We still have a death metal band untill today such as Silent Death, Braindead, etc and lately Tandus, Mandatory, etc. As I’ve told you above the situation is never the same as before coz now it seems like the subject above rules not only our scene but almost everywhere now. I’m glad if some band start to play back the 80’s metal influences because the old –school stuffs have a lot of originalities and quite unique too. But the band should do it honestly, not just follow the trend. That’s all I think.

When we looks to eastern band now, many of them begin to talk about Malay Magic, Malay epic and poetry and other patriotic stuffs. Would Sarcastic follows them? What do you think about traditional Malay Magic?
What can I say about that, I’m glad to see this thing going on. We should be proud to talk about our own stuffs because it also can buil-up our own identity. Yes! Eastern image. It’s wasting if we still talk about Viking, snow, etc which quite not related with our scene. But for Sarcastic we are not 100% into that stuffs. This not means we disagree with that matter. Since we start, our lyrics is mainly about something violence especially about war, revenge, etc. So we just want to keep that thing moving and that was our identity I guess...

To every darksouls the forest holds something special, unique, mysterious and powerful. Do you agree?
I’m not sure about this. It’s depends on how they feel and of course forest have alots of mysterious thing inside. The story about ‘bunian’, ‘penunggu’, ‘pontianak’, etc. Is highly related within the forest and maybe this all things gave them the inspiration to feel the forest hold something horror, mystic and tons of mysterious thing inside. But don’t forget that forest also hide a lt of wild-life especially the dangerous one like snake, tiger, lion, etc. Ha! Ha! Ha!

At this time, any serious record labels interested to release your material?
We actually just have a deal with North Poem Records ( a new label risen up from Kedah ) recently. They agreed to distribute our demo. So for now, everybody who want to try our stuffs, you can get it through North Poem Records.

Future plan?
Our future plans is to record another material but not in this current moment. From now we just want to concentrate on “No Mercy At All”.

Some epiloque for this interview?
Thanks Remmy for this interview and for those outside there who supported us, we appreciate it and thanks a lot.

Monday, October 26, 2009

EXPLOSIVE KIDS

2 hari lepas aku bersama Syed Devastator ke kedai elektronik Indera Jaya untuk membaiki amp bass Behringer dynamizer yang pukah angkara 5 orang budak umur sekitar 13 – 15 tahun. Bengang betul aku dibuatnya. Dalam masa yang sama aku teringat sebuah peristiwa suatu ketika dahulu di M.A Studio yang menjadi satu-satunya tempat latihan kami – Blackfire dan The Ravens.

Teringat lagi masa itu, aku dan Yen masih berkerja sebagai kuli di merata-rata. Kami dah mencecah umur pertengahan 20-an masa itu jadi suatu permulaan yang agak lewat berbanding remaja-remaja masa kini yang pada usia 13 tahun sudah boleh bermain alat muzik dan menyewa studio. Kali pertama aku menyewa studio masih segar dalam ingatan aku, yakni di sebelah Pasaraya Taman Kemajuan yang dimiliki oleh Subri ex-Blackfire. Aku berusia 16 tahun ketika itu, mengayuh basikal bersama Roohi dan Ronnie ke studio berkenaan hasil himpunan wang saku ke sekolah selama seminggu.

Dibawah jaket Sodom itulah amp Fender yang aku musnahkan. heh!


Kembali kepada cerita bass ini, pada suatu pagi kami (Blackfire) seperti biasa menjalani latihan di M.A Studio atau lebih dikenali sebagai Studio Pak Din, seperti selalu aku cucuk saja kabel bass gitar aku tekan butang ‘on’ dan pulas knob full volume dan petik. BAAaaamm! Amp Fender kepunyaan Pak Din blown! Pak Din punya angin dengan aku hari itu, dimakinya aku berguni-guni sambil menukarkan speaker amp tersebut kepada yang baru serta-merta kerana beliau ada stok speaker yang banyak. Yang baiknya Pak Din ini, walaupun dia marah. Dia tidak meminta sesen pun sebagi ganti kerosakan berkenaan kerana dia faham kami ini tidak berduit.

Children of the Damned yang memusnahkan amp aku pula. hah!


Jadi dari situ aku pun teringat kes budak-budak ini, aku nak minta ganti pun. Semestinya mereka tidak berduit jugak. Mungkin duit yang digunakan untuk menyewa studio ini pun hasil dari wang saku yang disimpan. Jadi tidak sampai hati hendak minta.

Seperti apa yang Pak Din leterkan kepada aku lama dahulu, aku pun ulangilah kepada budak-budak berkenaan. Jika amp masih belum digunakan hari itu, atau maknanya masih belum panas. Jangan terus buka full volume dan main. Warm-up sebentar kemudian baru cari setting yang sesuai. Barulah amp itu tahan lama dan tidak blow. Betul atau tidak teori itu aku tidak tahu, tetapi dah 2 kali perkara ini berlaku melalui pengalaman aku. Dan rasanya ianya betul!

Monday, October 12, 2009

AU REVOIR NEW RECORDING SESSION

owThe recording for all lead guitars begun last night. I must say, this is our best works so far. I definately satisfied with all the 6 songs we worked for this whole year. Thanks to Yen, for helping me out even his schedule was tigh with his volley ball team, job, kids and wife. This new mini-album would never complete without him. To me, Yen was the best guitarist I’ve ever worked with. He’s an excellent guitar player into Scandinivian Black Metal so much. Only the tunes from Marduk or Mayhem can satisfy this beast.

The good things about Yen, he only guy understood what I wanted in my music. He can appreciate my control in the band and his attitude is the best. HE never interested in playing with other bands. Even if I’m not around, he rather not playing guitar at all than to play with other bands. That’s what I truly admire about him.

Looking back in time, we both formed The Ravens ( Black/Thrash Metal band) back in 1999 and now we still together with Au Revoir, which is 10 years now. We’re innocent, unskilled musicians when we first touched our instruments of choice. I remember Boy Rahim, I remember Wanwarlock, I remember Diken, I remember Ijan, I remember Ciwi, I remember all of us drove in Wanwarlock's mini car to M.A Studio. Damn! Ciwi came to my studio just a few minutes ago, and he’s the first guy I give the chance to listen to the new songs. HE was like... Wow! ( like usual!). Ciwi is the most supportive friend we ever had, everything we do ( whether good or bad) he will always say it ‘great’. Back in those old days, Ciwi even paid to watch us play. I am happy he’s still loves our works till these days.

Well, the new mcd will be released on January 2010. Contains with 6 songs, of fucking heavy metal. During the period of this recording, I’m mostly listening and get inspired by Pentagram, Candlemass, Judas Priest, Turbo (Poland), and Black Sabbath. I guess, I go for arrangement this time rather than complex riffs or aggression. But don’t worry, I never get sentimental. It is heavy as fuck and dark as the night!

About the lyrics, what I can say, I’m into John Dunning stuffs, who wrote over a thousand account of true crime. A mixture of sorcery, satanism, sadism, and religious subject as well.

So I just hope you all gonna get this mcd when it’s out, coz I’m sure we are going to take a break for a long period after this album been released. But I promise, this new mini cd going to stab you deep in the heart!

Click here to watch our recording session.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

STORMING STEELS & HELLWITCH



Today I wanna tell you a story about how I agreed to do an artworks for Storming Steels and Hellwitch split cd. I known Fufu (or known as Witch Hunter ) of Storming Steels for about 10 years now. We have been working together in the same factory in our ‘darkest’ era. He formed this Thrash/Power metal band Storming Steels in 2007, and I was very happy with his commitment and waiting for their record impatiently. When they entered Retrex studio to record their material for the first time, I’m honored to give them some advises and tips. On those days, I was working in Bedong, Kedah.


Nostalgic. We were both harsh labours ten years ago


So, Fufu kept asking me to do the front cover artwork for the debut album. I told him, that I’m busy. He wanted an old school feeling something like Iron Maiden or Destruction cover, but he wanted the line-up to be cartoonized. So, one night in about 2-3 hours, I did it. Together with their band’s logo.

Few months later, Fufu came to me told, they cancelled the debut album, but wanted to released them as split cd with US, Hellwitch. I was great news. But I think, it is better for them to release a debut album on their own first. Then they can use Hellwitch fame to release a split cd. But Fufu told me, his vocalist really wanted to release this with Hellwitch desperately. So be it....
Then I have to alter my artwork but adding Hellwitch personels in it. I computerized it, so it became how it looks on the cd. Gladly, the bands and the label like it. It was the first of it kind in Malaysia anyway.

With the release of this product, I begin to write with Pat Ranieri (vocalist & guitarist) of Hellwitch. A very friendly guy who still into tapes and cd trading. He is also kind enough to sent me some unreleased and advance tracks of Hellwitch which I appreciated so much. But amongst the best stuffs I got from him is this gig poster from 1986. They’re one of the opening acts for Morbid Angel gig along with Massacre, Obliviom and others. Just look at the hand-written logos!! The is pure old school!



Monday, September 7, 2009

Of Faith And Victorious Weapons

Antara perkara yang menyakitkan hati sebagai tuan studio bila tengok beginners datang menyewa. Dalam masa yang sama kita teringat masa kita pula yang beginner dahulu. Masa tu kepuasan dalam menghayati muzik yang paling penting, maknanya walaupun permainan kita hancur tetapi kepuasan dalam melepaskan emosi itu yang kita utamakan.

Jadi disitu kita tidak pernah pentingkan aspek technical dan skill. Maka bahana yang diterima adalah tuan studio itu. Contohnya cymbal zildjan 16” aku hancur dek penangan lagu Sudirman aja, skin Remo snare aku musnah dek lagu Bunkface aja, dan sebagainya. Jadi akulah yang pening kepala. Sebab rata-rata budak yang datang jamming ni bukannya ada duit sangat pun, ada yang masih bersekolah, ada yang jobless, lebih teruk hopeless.

Sebenarnya Faithcraft Studio bukan menjana pendapatan yang tinggi pun, bahkan aku sering menanggung kos lebihan setiap bulan. Ya lah, memang kita suka bila studio ini menjadi pusat atau basement untuk kawan-kawan menjana kreativiti, menjalani latihan. Namun yang lebih sebenarnya diharapkan oleh mereka. Mereka mahu studio ini dijadikan macam sebuah charity place yang ditaja oleh aku. Penah ada satu ketika, bila mengetahui ada yang nak rekod lagu di studio aku. Aku pun mula la upgrade equipments aku dengan tambahan crash cymbal, tambahan microphones, cable baru dan sebagainya demi mendapatkan sound yang terbaik untuk mereka. Akhirnya aku juga yang kecewa. Penah aku mendapat untung sebanyak RM10 sahaja dalam sebulan setelah ditolak segala kos elektrik dan kerosakan!


Kenapa aku teruskan Faithcraft? Sebabnya inilah impian aku. Untuk mempunyai sebuah basement untuk aku terus berkarya, dan menjalankan aktiviti yang membebaskan aku dari tekanan hidup. Inilah tempat yang mengambarkan diri aku sebenar. Diluar sana, aku seperti orang lain, hidup hipokrit dengan pakaian dan cara hidup normal yang sememangnya bukan diri aku. Disinilah tempat aku curahkan kreativiti aku dalam muzik, lukisan dan penulisan, disini tempat aku meditasi, sembahyang, baca kitab. Disinilah tempat aku rehat dan tidur. Disinilah tempat aku bersenam. Dan sinilah juga tempat aku mendapat hiburan dan ber musyawarah bersama rakan-rakan.

Jadi Faithcraft Productions buat masa ini memenuhi keperluan dari aspek peribadi aku buat masa ini. Sekadar basement berlesen yang ditubuhkan pada dasarnya untuk perjuangan muzik. Tetapi kini, ia lebih dari itu....

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

KEMENYAN FANZINE: Interview With Kaamos


Death Metal Darkness: the phase that is meaningless without band such KAAMOS, especially in Sweden where melody reigns supreme. I have known Kaamos since 1999 and I have them interviewed in my issue # 6 while their debut promo ’99 remained as one of my favorite tape till today. Here I summon Konstantin to chat about the past and present blasphemy...

How’s life today? With “Lucifer Rising” album, I guess you guys are so busy with many many live shows, right?
Hells Rammy! It’s ok today. We are not that busy with live shows right now since quite a lot of them have been executed already. But there’s still a few coming up.

“Lucifer Rising” is out late from the schedule it supposed to. Why? So, do you satisfied with the result of the new recording? In what way did you seen the band has improved? Anyway, why “Lucifer Rising” is the title?
The reason Lucifer Rising was so delayed is because of Candlelight release schedule. That plus that they were establishing their US office delayed not only our release but quite few. Yes we are very satisfied with the recording. We had a very clear vision of how we wanted the result actually surprised me. I’d say that we’ve improved as a band and not as singulair musicians. Afterall, Kaamos is a band that has one vision so we have concentrated on developing as an entity. We choose the name “Lucifer Rising” due to several reasons. First of all it refers to an age that in the East is called Kali Yuga. Secondly it is a movie done by Kenneth Anger that has inspired me extremely much. And the lyrics deal with themes that are consistent with the idea of the Left Hand Path.

Tell me more about the new recording, about the enviroment that Kaamos felt comfortable with? How about things that you think you’re lucky to knew it and you won’t repeat or use it again in the future? Is there any?
We recorded this one in Berno Studio that has a respectable history when it comes to extreme metal. And classical bands like Grostesque, Seance, etc have recorded there. Also this is the only studio in Sweden, as far as I know, that still has the possibility of recording analogues. Which is very important for us. We are not really comfortable in studio enviroments due to that they most of the time have a very sterile enviroment. And you dissect the songs so you only get frustrated with them in the end. But being in Berno this was never an issue. And we will definately use it again if it is possible.

Ok, from your previous so-superb cd “Curse Of Aeons”. Does it still fits to what Kaamos are today? I guess, in Sweden all the so-called death metal bands couldn’t reach your level of brutality!
Yezzzz! Kaamos is and will always be about DEATH metal. We of course develop but since we feel that we control the way that a band develops our aim is to dive and penetrate deeper into the darkness that should be the trademark of genuine death metal and black metal.

Do you dare to break the shell like what Samael, Satyricon, Behemoth, Myrkskog have done? What do you think about bands that incorporated metal with other elements which sometime seems didn’t fit at all?
I do not mind if people/bands implement non-traditional element into a genre. But one has to do it with class. For example as Celtic Frost did with female vocals, Morbid Angel with keyboards, etc. But I do not endorse it for the sake of ‘evolution’. That’s just a fucking lame excuse for wanting to change style. It should add and express idea. Kaamos has so far never used it and I don’t know if we will. But if we do it, it will be very moderate that’s for sure.

So what is the thing that we still kept in ug world? What is UG to you? What is commercial and entertainment? I really don’t care any of these, what I care is ‘true’ music, right? But let’s talk about this a little...
Hmmm... I’d say that UG is when you can go to another country and do gigs without the involvment of managers and bookers. When the organizers are so dedicated to the music that they do all to get you there. And when the focus is the spirit of the genre. Not the money, the ‘fame’ or whatever other glossy shit that certain people strive for.

Did Kaamos really care for serious lyrics? I means, Death Metal or Grind metal bands usually never care much about what they’re screaming for. Some nasty words will do just fine... anyway, tell me 5 of the best lyrics that touched your soul...
Kaamos definately cares and uses serious lyrics. I am of the opinion that the lyrics is half of the song. I know that I am rather alone with this perspective. But nonetheless, I do not believe you touch something primal with death metal song that expresses a care for ‘saving the whales’ mentality. There is a genre for that, and it ain’t DEATH metal. The 5 lyrics that come to mind for time being is, Vision From The Darkside (Morbid Angel), Chaos Breed and Crawl (Entombed), In The Shadow Of The Horns (Darkthrone), Deicide (Deicide).

Let’s talk about the cover. There is ‘medieval’ feelings in it. A very great artwork for a great band! What do you think about it?
I think that the cover suits perfectly with the title and is a very good visual representation of what Kaamos is about. If you don’t know Kaamos and see the cover I think you know what you expect. It is based on Atu 15 of the Tarot, namely The Devil. We used this idea and asked the artist to redraw the card with symbolism and aspects that are coherent with LHP ideals.

Personally do you think Kaamos music can give harm to kids or public in general? Hehehe.
Let’s hope so!

I ask you something different now. Which is the best muder cases that happened in this year? Which is the most interesting crime cases to you?
Hmmm, I am not that much into crime. The only thing I’ve noticed lately, at least for Sweden is that it is escalating. But tsunami was a nice surprise. But that is not really crime.

Are you satisfied with Candlelight Productions? Will they be sending Kaamos over here for some gigs?
Mostly yes. However Kaamos are not going to Malaysia that I am pretty certain of. But I doubt there are many bands from abroad that come there. It’s pretty hard (read impossible) for bands to travel there for gigs.

Last words to our readers?
Nox est Lvx!

Taken from issue # 11 (September 2006)
By - Raimi
See Kaamos live here

Friday, August 7, 2009

PAINTING: KREMATION “ To The End, Headhunter Revenge” album


Nasth Sheir, the guitarist and vocalist of the band was my great penpal I ever had. We have been writting a letter since the late 90’s and sadly I still haven’t got a chance to meet with this cool guy. To me, The Kings Of Sarawak’s death metal will always be them. As they’re amongst the first in Borneo to worship Death/Black Metal beside Senseless, Unitheism, Larrong and few others.

In 1999 with just a kidding, I offered to do the painting for their full length album after listening to their remakable debut EP. From my humble opinon, the EP cover that has been done by Nebiula Production crew didn’t fits well to their image as Sarawakian band. How come Rome-like broken idol can be match with death metal band from the Land Of Headhunter?

So he give me the title of the album “The Curse Of Headhunter” for me to get an inspirations. He told me, he wanted something like Death’s “Human” album cover but with darker vision of death, tribal and symbolic.

A few weeks later, the painting finished. And I posted it to his address. Nasth Sheir liked it and use it as their cover. But the title has been change to “ Headhunter Revenge”. The album was released under Music Trax Sdn. Bhd. In 2000 but I got a free copy 1 year later. After keeps on asking for it. I guess, that is the way our local bands work.

It is a bit dissapointment, to see this album only contained 5 new songs while the rest taken from their previous EP. They also recorded those new songs in Lelengau Digital Studio, but the result in Irama Studio in the EP is far much more better than Lelengau. Anyway, this piece is a must for you who still don’t know who the hell are Kremation!

Recently, I heard Nasth Sheir fronted a Rock/Heavy Metal band called Rebellion which had released a few numbers of demo tapes. You might have to check that out for yourself.
~Rammy

DARK LEGIONS MAGAZINE: Interview With Kremation



One of the most destructive force from the land where warriors would hunt for their prey’s head had release their EP “Reborn”. This is the band which doesn’t need introduction as they are the kings of death metal in Borneo island. The Legions managed to get hold with their spokes person Nasth Sheir and this is what he says...

How’s the going now for Kremation, any line-up changes? I was wondering who was playing drums on your “Reborn” EP? Mind telling me your extreme musical background?
Right now, we are working for our upcoming release which was recorded at Lelengau Digital Studio in Sibu. No line-up changes at the moment but for the LP recording we make it without Rithman (G/K) coz he is still has a few contracts to play at night clubs in Kuala Lumpur. So, we invited our friend who will handle on the solo guitar tracks only. The drummer who is working with us on “Reborn” EP was Mr. Machine. What I mean is... we used MC-50 for the drum tracks becoz we couldn’t find a drummer who could play our song, we even use it in our coming LP which will be out soon! You said ‘extreme’? I don’t think so. Actually it is simply death metal.

Are you satisfied with your “Reborn” EP? Can you tell us more about the EP?
Yes, for the moment... hehe. As you know, the recording of the EP was our first experience. So, of coz there is a lot of things that we didn’t know especially some of the equipment at the recording studio which we never used before or in other words, lack of experience just sums it up! So, we just followed what our main technician (Yazid) suggests whether this or that equipment was good enough for us or not. We worked together and tried to make something different. Kremation doesn’t want to follow other Sarawakian band’s style even we from the same land. So far, Alhamdulilah and REBORN was the result of it. The responses was more than great, especially in Asia but not in USA. USA people said that our EP’s music concept was too soft but who cares!!! I don’t give a damn! You know, we have to create our own idea to compose whatever concept/music style we want to do. So, that is the way we want it to be and of course, we did it for ourselves. We never force anyone to love our songs. Anyway, thanx to those who understand and keep on supporting us, we really appreciate it. And we are also proud to tell you that majority of our EP had positive/good reviews even we didn’t make it a big promotion on it.


Well, it is the first time I’ve heard the recording from “Irama’s Studio”. I must say the production tone by Yazid (Blackfire) makes “Reborn” sounds so heavy and fresh at the same time.
Really? For your info, we are the first band Irama Studio chose for Metal project. The big boss of the studio was really shock when he heard our songs! He thought that our music was something like XPDC or other rock bands. So, can you imagine how his face looked after hearing to Death Metal music. He he he.. of course worried like hell wooo!!! The sound check of EP was done by ourselves. As I told you, Yazid was just teaching and showing us how to operate some equipment which we were not familiar with.

Does Yazid know about the reformation of the legendary Blackfire? They got new guitarist now...
Yes, we had already told him about it.

How’s the deal with Nebiula Production?
It was simple deal. We asked them to help us to distribute our EP for the Malaysia market only, just like that.
What are the bands that influenced your sonority?
Actually, I’m not sure about my band’s main influence but I love Slayer, Deicide, King Diamond, Suffocation, Death, the ‘old’ Helloween, Yngwie Malmsteen, Vinnie Moore, James Murphy, Cassopia (jazz rules!), Bob Marley and lots more. You will not believe it if I say I had an idea to compose “The Land to Nowhere” after listening to “I Shot The Sheriff” by Bob Marley. You know, I always preffered any kind of music when I start to write the song as for my preference, I mean how they create their music. I believe the combination from other elements of music will create something different. Do you understand what I mean?

Yes. I can sense some black metal parts in “ Reborn”, especially in vocals and lyrics. What do you say?
That what I’ve told you earlier, about the combination from other elements like heavy/ black/ melodic/ aggressive/ rock/ blues and so on. Our vocals tracks was more into Black metal style but we talked about sin, suffercation, punishment, death and life in our lyrics.

I know Kremation is currently working on a new material “The Curse Of Headhunter”. Tell me more about the new devastating opus? From the title, I can say that you are into local legends and myths.
Well, what can I say? It’s full of melodious sound with simple running powerchords and heavy riffs. We also use our traditional instrumen called “Sape”, even the lyrics was more about the history and fantasy of Sarawak legends.

Well, “The Curse Of Headhunter” will be under?
North Poem Records.

What do you think about the history of Sarawakian cannibalism and Black magic? There is one of the songs in “Reborn” which you sang in Bahasa Melayu, right? Tell me something about it?
Hello, excuse me, I would like to make a correction. There was no ‘cannibalism’ in Sarawak. They fight and kill someone or each other because they want to get a title as ‘warrior’. It also happened to a man who decided to get married with the girl, whom he loved. So, he has to get a head and show it to the father-in-law as a proof that he can take care or be respossible for his daughter. Head was a symbol of power. They didn’t kill and bring back victims for cooking curry or soup. They kill for the head, that’s what they really want! Sorry, I lack the knowledge about Sarawakian’s Black Magic because nowadays there’s only a few communities who still practise black magic. And from what I know, Sarawakian’s black magick is totally damn brutal, horrific, mystic and inhumane which you should never use (even think about it)!. The song that we sang in Bahasa Melayu was “Blackwar Dreamer”. It was about what we call as “Hari Perhitungan/Pembalasan”.

Kremation is taking part in “Salutant To King” (A Tribute To Sil Khannaz) cd, you will do a cover song “Eastern Barbaric Skullcrusher”, right? That was, brillant as ever from Sil Khannaz!
Yes, I hope it will also be a brilliant tribute which Kremation will cover..hehehe.Which are the best current Death and Black Metal acts in your opinion?Death, Dissection, Sardotical Scoundrel, Deciede, Suffocation, Nagflar, Abigor, Acturus and Sorath.

What do you think about death metal bands which are too romantic nowadays like Dark Tranquility? Do you think those traditional elements like satanism and darkness is getting lost and forgotten?
He he he.. do you know our LP “The Curse Of Headhunter” is more romantic than Dark Tranquility? As I told you just now, we do what we believe in.. it’s our concept. If you think all this is not right for you, why don’t you just forget about them? The scene still have thousand of you out there...

Back to “Reborn” EP, is there any meaning behind the cover sleeve? Don’t you want to work out some old-taste cover for your upcoming material just like ol’ good Kreator, Sodom, Slayer or Iron Maiden?
No.

The good thing about this new millenium are the coming back of the true quality of Heavy Metal and Death Metal, right?
Yeah!! Rightttt!! Even Death is back with their latest killer album.

All the best to you. Forever we will march under the banner of extreme metal.
He he he.. you’re right brother Rammy. Anyway, thanx for spending time with us in this interview. We appreciate your support. All the best to every metal hordes!

Interview by Rammy
Taken from Dark Legions magazine issue # 3 ( October 2000)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

PRODUCT: Guerilla Jacket


Here come the limited edition of Faithcraft Productions guerilla Jacket. To purchase contact us for more detail.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

PAINTING: NUNSLAUGHTER “ Unholy Hell” 7 inc vinyl

When Basement Records asked me to draw a front and back cover for Nunslaughter limited series vinyl. I am more than happy. It is because I am a big fan of this conservative band. For many years they has remained loyal to the underground scene, challenge themselves to be not progress like other bands. They are definitely one of the best Black/Thrash metal ever come out from USA.

The vinyl was released on 2008 contained 6 tracks that previously released as split with Dreketa titled “Evil Dreams” which they recorded in Bedroom Studio on August 1999 and with Grand Belial’s Key titled “ Satan Is Metals Master ” recorded in Harsh Reality Studio on May 2000. As bonus there is the mighty Venom covers song called “Hellchild”.

This release was limited to 30 copies only and comes with poster and also t-shirt. Due to lots of demand for more Nunslaughter vinyl. Basement records again offer me to do the artwork for Unholy Hell series no.1 to 5. It schedule to be release in 2010. So, be sure you don’t miss this once again. I think pre-order is available through Basement Records.

By:- Rammy
Click here to watch my drawing skills

Monday, August 3, 2009

THE UNTOLD STORY: BLACKFIRE “Lahir Dari Api” Cd



I’ve been reading a lots of review concerning the album. Some praise while some others disappointed with the final result. Do we as band like the album? We did, with some small part of it. But we also think it is a product that put us into shame.

People were so much into myth about Blackfire, because we were so underground and almost 90% metal heads in Malaysia haven’t heard our music before the album is released. They never really knew who was/is behind the band? Of what nature we were formed? What is our attitude towards heavy metal? They don’t even know what kind of music we actually played? And this is what you should learn about Blackfire, I’ll tell you the story never been asked by any magazine or anyone before....

Blackfire never wanted to release an album at the first place. They just want to do a proper recording for personal use and to share with their close friends as monument of their 2 decades of existence in Malaysian underground metal scene. And the first trial was to record the songs at Blackchamberarea Studio in Brickfield which owned by Azmi brother-in-law, Mr. Ajin Blackrose. It was analogue recording with a very warm and harsh sound. I got that pre-recording tape, and love it so much. Core is the guitarist/bassist at that time and it was the reason, why they asked me to join as bassist. So, with hardship as the beginner in guitar playing I quickly learned their songs. Sadly, the recording was left undone as Ajin were busy with his daily life and routine gone and back from England, as he’s married to Indo-British girl.

The 3 of us, Hadi-Core-and me continue to rehearse on every weekend to fulfill our hunger for blackend metal and to forget our miserable life. Anyhow, I still brought up this album releasing matter to Jaie when I saw him at gig in Penang. From my humble opinion, Blackfire as the pioneer in this extreme scene should have their album released, so all their efforts to the scene can be remembered. Furthermore, their music totally unknown to many, so their style were stolen by the copycats but no one ever noticed. So it is so wise for Blackfire to have an album out. So, I’ve told Hadi about Jaie would help us if we trust him to release the album, as he got his own recording studio, sound engineer, and records label. So one night after rehearse, we phoned Azmi. With heavy heart Azmi told us he agreed. Azmi told us again, he never wanted to release an album, but as Hadi want it to happen. So be it. He left all the deal with Jaie to us.

Problems attacked us again, as Core no longer available in guitar position. Somewhere in 2002 together with Hadi, I went to Nebiula Sound Recording, Loke Yew KL to record the album. It was my first time recording, and I am absolutely unready for it as I’m just learning how to play guitars for only 1 year. SERIOUSLY !!! And the scary part is to record guide tracks. As we reached the small and packed studio, we have to spend our night at Sam’s ( Kitanachi) place. I remember, he was still a hot bachelor on that day. Now he became Edrie Hashim brother-in-law. On that night, Sam told me that he once was a roommate of Shidi Sil Khannaz living in the very same house (studio) at Loke Yew. And he was the kid who hold the microphone to Hadi while singing and blasting his drum at Semua House gig in 1988.

The next day, the two of us rehearse non-stop for about 48 hours, except to take bath and eat. After we felt like losing our hands and legs, we are set to record the album. We just took us one whole night to record 7 songs which Jadam said never been done by any bands before. I played all the guitar tracks ( which later being replaced with proper playing by Joe Slaughter ) and the bass tracks. So after 4-5 days in Nebiula we returned home, waiting for Joe Slughter to learn all the songs and Azmi to complete the tasks.

From that period, again the recording remains a big question mark. Azmi went to practices his vocals for a few times but then gone till 2004. I’m always asking him about this matter, but never force him to do it if he got no interests in releasing an album. But I encourage him anyway. So he did, in 2005 he finished the job. Jadam and Jaie mixed up all the songs with only Azmi monitoring them. So, we here in Perlis doesn’t have any ideas about when and how the mixing process was going on?

Now let me tell you about our personal taste in metal, Azmi into a lots of 70’s stuffs, so he admired clean and hard music like Rainbow ( He told me, he never wear any bands t-shirt but he got big Rainbow backpatch on his jacket in the 80’s), Iron Maiden ( early album but mostly talked about Seventh Sons Of the Seventh Sons), Dio (everything), Black Sabbath, Venom, Sweet Charity ( he went to all their shows in the 80’s ), Aidy the creator of early Blackfire’s music were so much into AC/DC and Motorhead while Hadi only into Celtic Frost, Bathory, Venom, Venom and Venom! But they hated Glam rock so much, which why they always claimed in their shows that they’re Black Metal band and the rumours said that Blackfire into Glam Rock is totally false. Azmi always said to me he feel strange about all these metal bands today that went for Glam Rock fashions in the name of old school? Because the truth is, band like Blackfire were born to terminate those moron bands and defy their directions.

Back to the mixing process, you probably understand it now, right? Azmi were happy with the mixing result as he is into clean and professional kind of mixing. But to me and Hadi it is just an okay product. But undeniably, the drum sound we got in Blackchamberarea Studio is far better than this is one.

Now, the packaging. It absolutely surprised me to death! Seriously. I means, before the album was out in 6.6.2006, me with Azmi already planned for a cover design and concept, and I’m also penned down to him some artworks to be use in the front cover. We visualised a painting of ugly hand with claws holding door knob, red eyes peeping through the hole, .. you know, all kind of those old school horror. I can paint, so does his wife, the cartoonist for Gila Gila magazine. We imagine a great cover design to commemorate our works. Azmi even write down his personal biography to be print and compiled most of the ultra rare photos never been seen.

But it ended up like a super crap design of the decade. We never imagine that it would be such shitty cover ever seen. Jaie keep telling how cool the design was. I’m just smile. But in my heart it is worst than a cow dung. Imagine back at home, I type the word ‘fire walllpaper’ in Yahoo images, then it popped out that picture Jaie use for our front cover. Without edit they just use it for front cover just by adding Blackfire logo on it, and they even use that stolen image as Cd label. I look inside the 2 pages cover. Super tiny font used, and the pictures is like i-don’t-know-what!! It is crap. We feel like idiot when thinking about it, how come Jaie never discuss with us about the design? Azmi and Hadi always said they don’t want to use those old triangle logo anymore. But still Jaie use it for I-don’t-know-what reason? Furthermore, there is no title for the album? We already said before the album will be entitled “Lahir Dari Api” while only the song title in it called “Lahirnya Dari Api”. It seems no one hear our voices when the music is ready. We don’t know how much quantity of the cds has been pressed or sold. To think about this, only make us puke.... but it seem Jaie think we are happy kids whom had an album out on sale.

No, we don’t get rich or any profit from the album. I got 20 free copies of the album, while Azmi maybe about 50 copies. There is no royalty what so ever, as I got to know Hadi borrowed great amount of money from Jaei. So it is considered fair trade of bussiness to them.

A few months later, I saw our t-shirt being printed. Yes, with the old logo we disliked. I asked a friend who bought it from Nebiula Heavy Metal Shop. They said the shirt was exclusively printed by the band themselves. But Azmi absolutely know nothing about it.

Now, when thinking about Blackfire. I really don’t know if we could continue with our music. I’m tired of being ‘enabler’ to the band. It is great to make music and share it to the world, but there a limit in everything. It has to be a good reason for us to record an album again....

by:- Rammy

Saturday, August 1, 2009

IN STUDIO: Blackfire latest recording



30th July 2009, woke up late this day, still feeling headache from bus ride last night.( damn! with hypertension and overweight body, really make me feel old )At 6.40 pm I took Ex motorcycle went to meet miss Madelina Onong in PJ to give Au Revoir t-shirt she ordered to me since the last two month. Miss Onong is addicted to Char Koe teaw, so it is easy to me to seduce by taking her roaming down town and brought her to fine Char Koteaw stall in Wangsa Maju.

After sending Miss Onong back home at 10.30pm, I went straight to SS15 Subang Jaya and waited for Azmi. He reached the studio with his son at 11.30 pm. So without wasting anymore of precious time we headed off to recording matter. Some of you might still asking, did we working on new songs? Okay, this is the story. We had this offer coming from German label to record a crisscross tribute to SABBAT and BLACKFIRE. It is really difficult to us to decide whether we should go for it. Some of our close friends tell us not to do it, as they knew we never listened to any Sabbat songs. We only know them from the magazines. The same goes to me, I never got any of their materials but I saw them live in Singapore on May 2007 as I performed with Devastator, one of the opening acts. From what I experienced, Sabbat worshipped Venom and they’re very much into everything - the images, the music, the lyric.
 

Some other friends told us that it will become the most - unique tribute album ever released. And they gave us this simple and strong reason. Sabbat and Blackfire is the first of their kind from Japan to Malaysia. Both deserve a respect and salutations each others.

So we say YES. So did Sabbat. The vinyl should be out in September this year, but due to Sabbat got so many live shows coming out from Europe. They postponed the release till the early next year. Honestly, we seek their mp3 in the net and begin our works. One of the reasons why I personally agreed to do this recording, probably because I can’t see how we can continue to work as a band anymore. Seriously, maybe this would be the last product of Blackfire… who knows….

Back to the recording, we had fun doing recording this time. So does the engineer Mr. Meng. I never seen Meng laughed so much before. Recalling back my first work in Standing Wave Studio 4 years back there aren’t many metal bands record their material here except those modern rock bands. And I remember, it was Borhan of Osmantikos (Hardcore Punk) that keeps on suggesting me that studio after he recorded their debut material over here. Meng also was a fulltime sound engineer on those days, but now he only doing recording by nighttime.


For those whom might wonder, I should tell you we have this great harsh and dirty guitar sounding this time, since I’m the one who played everything. So, pull up the volume and expect the good old school feeling we possess!!!!
By: - Rammy
To watch our recording session click here

Monday, July 27, 2009

BLACKFIRE “The Hereafter Live” Cd




I remember listening to this tape in Azmi’s car when we hang out in Kangar as he returned home for Hari Raya in 2000. Like other old folks, Azmi keep telling me the nostalgic part on how the gig turn frightening when some of the crowds no longer enjoy headbang instead they worship the songs like satanic mantra - sitting in front row and do tribal-like ritual ceremony. He told me that all those shout and scream I heard from tape coming from RATOR and the gang, who are young rebellious youth on those days. They even started a fight in the mosh pit, that’s why in the middle of their cult song “Black Hell”, you can hear Azmi try to calm them down saying – Jangan Gaduh-gaduh, Black Metal, Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, Heavy Rock Thrash. Semua adalah saudara” which means all kind of metal are brothers. And yes, I almost forget, Azmi started off “Black Hell” with his legendary quotes – “Welcome to my black zone where you can find evil and danger..”


The truth about this tape, Blackfire never asked for it. Azmi told me that when the show is over, the sound engineer gave it to him said that he recorded it for fun. But there are others who did the recording of that show on that days, including Joe Kidd of the infamous Aedes Zine ( the first UG music zine in Malaysia ). As known to all, it was his recording that spread all over the globe thus making Blackfire one of the most important band in Asia. If the other bands still copy Venom and Bathory to named it as Black Metal. Blackfire has formulated their own Asiatic version of evil music and sang in Malay at the first place. We can clearly heard Azmi confirmed their nature, before blast off with the song “Sengketa” – Kami bukan band Thrash Metal, influence kami lebih kepada Black Metal. ( We are not Thrash Metal band, our influence more to Black Metal”.

The venue for this unforgettable live show took place in Semua House, Kuala Lumpur on May 21st, 1988 which actually felt on 2nd day of Hari Raya Edul Fitri. Semua House back in the day was a fine place for underground community, - thrashers, skate boaders, punksters get unite. Lots of independent events were organized there. In that gig, Blackfire were playing with RAMPA, which formed by Zainal Rampa, the founder and ex-singer of Malaysian rock monsters, SEARCH.

Our deal with Basement Records begins when I received an email from Shammir in 2006. This hard working Hardcore Punk label has released lotto great products and got good distribution channels world wide. I heard some metal heads disappointed we choose punk label to release our cd, but Me and Azmi already gave up with the so-called Metal label that offer us. They only want profit but the result was total shit. So, we don’t have any problem signing with small punk label that do their job honest and keep their promises. Since then, I’m helping Shammir with the artworks, converting lotta demo tapes to cd like Infectious Maggots, Multilation, and many more.

There are only 3 tracks recorded here, so Basement asked me if I could add some rehearsal track as bonus.Iit would be damn expensive and wasting to press a cd with only 3 tracks on it. So, I put in our old rehearsal in M.A Studio, Perlis with Core on guitar and Pak Keh on bass, while Hadi singing and drumming. I remember watching those rehearsed, I’m really impressed with Hadi. It was really brutal, if only I had a camera on that day...

Now about the cover. The artwork for this cd were done by me. I even print a shirt with the artwork in very limited quantity. Those who are interested to buy it can contact me for that. The truth about it, I wanted to draw something in the same mood of original artwork on his tape. But Azmi disagreed and told me he never like any skulls design in any Blackfire artworks anymore.
by:- Rammy

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

INTERVIEW WITH DARKTHRONE



This is the first interview I’ve got it done since I quited doing zine in 2006. Why I did it? Simply because of this great person. Gylve Nagell, best known as Fenriz. I’m sure knew about his role in Norwegian metal scene. I had good time recalling my memories with DARKTHRONE’s music  as its soundtrack. I remember spending my pocket money and riding my bicycle to town just to check out their albums “A Blaze In Northern Sky” and “Transilvanian Hunger” pressed by Valentine Sound Productions (VSP) in cassette format. A few years later I finally got the chance to listen to their debut album which is way too good- that Fenriz himself didn’t want to talk much about it. 

I got my first Darkthrone T-shirt in 1995 given by a friend as he thought DARKTHRONE were too grim for him. I wore that shirt almost everyday. And nobody knew it was black metal. Back then in my hometown, there was only 9-10 guys knew what it is ‘black metal’ all about. 

Thanks to the internet. Everything become easy these day. I get to know Fenriz personally. And yes, he is no cannibal. But in reality, we shared something in common. I mean, like him, I’m a working-class metal head. I worked 8 hours per day as a social worker, then taken care of my studio and label, doing some artworks, composes some songs, practicing guitar and drums, maintaining my blog and touring with my bicyle if I have a free time. Fantastic or not. This is the life we choose.

Fenriz is a charismatic person I always thought he was. Devilish rocker who inspired others to fight for true metal and keep it the way it should and always be. You don’t need to be hypocrite bastard with this guy, you can talk to him about anything. So here are our interesting conversation tonight...

Interview by Raimi

Your very first whispers from the north?
Just back from tent trip nr 27 this year, listening to Dogs D'amour

So, what things that you enjoy most in life nowadays? I knew you are fulltime metalhead, is there anything out of music? I see everyone really wanted to live their life like yours, maybe from the myth they were told- everything is fun in Darkthrone...
No, there's only working class lifestyle, and i work way more than most people, every day up at 05.55 go to work, listen to music that people send me (on a discman) 7 hours there every day, that means i almost never have time to listen to music that i bought myself and WANT to listen to , cuz i have to listen to all that stuff that people send me. very frustrating, it is now 20th july and so far on my list (i write a list with all the releases i buy/get/trade) is 344 titles!! can anyone imagine how much this is? anyway, on the way back and from work I listen to mp3, and then there is lifting weights at the gym for 4-6 hours every week.

In the weekend i go on tent trips, and as you can see right now I have to work in front of the pc. this myspace page has 3000 + visitors every day, over 53 000 friends are signed up, and I work here to promote other bands I like TOTALLY IDEALISTC on my band of the week page. The worst think I know is when bands ASK IF THEY CAN BE BAND OF THE WEEK, that's disgusting. Of course it has to come from my own soul/brain, people can't ASK for that. then I would be corrupt. These bands only destroy for themselves.

So I get between 30-60 inquiries every day. It's NO fun in Darkthrone, only work.

What do you think about this black metal against technology attitude? I meant, you know like “Hey, we black metal demons don’t do internet, we satan don’t use keyboards”..? I remember you got pissed when I told this guy who wanted to contact you but didn’t have a myspace account?
Black metal is thinking for yourself. That can be done with or without computer. Most importantly is to stay away from copying 90’s bm. I don't play bm anymore because of all the trendys defacing the value of bm, and all the arty people into emperor and such... I didn't sign up for that. I signed up for rebellion, and I do that the best with my own songs since 2005 which is a mix of NWOBHM-punk and speed metal.

Myspace is the best thing for underground since the scene in the 80s WHICH I COME FROM AND BELONG TO. People must stop thinking of me as 90s person.

Are you happy with the myth surrounding Darkthone till these days? I laughed when I heard some kids even think that you are a caveman, that why you could composes primitive sound?
No, the reason I started doing interviews again in '98 is that I hated all the rumours. but my METAL EARS are "cavemanic", I cannot stand modern sound, not since shit like “Release From Agony” with Destruction, or “Blessed Are The Sick” with Morbid Angel, and that 3rd Death album... these releases had early modern sound and my ears couldn't take it. Also our first album had modern sound, but we had no choice cuz of SMALL BUDGET. We regretted ourselves and have spent the rest of our career on having THE CORRECT sound, namely RAW.

Do you think it is your attitude that make your music valuable and worth to be recognize?
Yes, it's 1100%% ATTITUDE! JOHN McENROE!!!!

You refused Darkthrone to be nominated in music awards yet you appeared in TV shows, metal documentary, etc as seen in Youtube.com? So, what is commercialism in metal for you?
I work hard as hell every day so I can do what is RIGHT with Darkthrone, I don't have to "join the circus". Soo many clowns out there.....

Well, the “Darkthrone And The Black Flag” is out now! And from what you’ve told me the differences between your previous material was an addition of N.W.O.B.H.M tastes which we won’t find in any of your past albums or in any of Norwegian bands? So, how could you explain this?
Because we grew up with stuff that was NWOBHM influenced, and for instance my fave album this year is “Wheels Of Steel” by Saxon, it is TOTAL perfection to me. not music for musicians, but for people with HEARTS AND SOULS!! anyway, everything moves in circles, personal music tastes too, I would like us to sound like 1972 or 1968, but for now - we are proudly stuck in 1980-1985, it seems.

Also, listen to the KILL EM ALL by Metallica, it has 30% punk and 30% NWOBHM on it. And this albums should be one of the most important for metal, along with Iron Maiden. But people today... triggered drum, STUPID use on synth ( there is good and bad styles of everything ) ...and a modern sound that takes away ALL the soul. They are traitor's of metal ..producers with their studios ..andy sneap, peter tätgren ...they destroy metal.

AURA NOIR has some riffs that are speed metal-ish. And norwegian band HJALLARHORN has often Nwobhm tendencies.

 
What things that make you strong each days to continue with Darkthrone? I remember when I’m still doing zine back in 1999, Darkthrone was going to be lay down to rest. I even put that news in my zine.
Because we keep DISTANCE to one another. We don't join the LIVE circus. Bands usually break up cuz of touring. Also we don't make plans, we take each day at a time, just like LIFE ITSELF, as darkthrone is a part of our LIFE like eating or girlfriends. And also, as we as people change, lyrics change, style changes...but we change in different ways than almost ALL other bands...others ALWAYS in more commercial style or style that has more support..we ALWAYS went with ugly sound and smaller styles than we had success with...now with metal punk..the smallest style ever since the late 70s when Motorhead "invented" it.

I knew your reasons for all this raw/harsh recording. But what is your comments on bands with crystal clear sounds, profesionalism in packaging/layout and attitude?
Crystal clear is to me PIECE OF MIND with Iron Maiden. And I love that. The problem is when people need more modern sound than this. Because NO METAL really needs it...it just became this way...and do you think these new bands actually listen to other bands with this modern style? No, they listen to Piece Of Mind with Iron Maiden!! HAHAAHA always they return to the old style when they want to listen to stuff themselves ...so why don't they go after that style instead? it's a mystery, and an AMBUSH on the metal that both I and the modern bands love.


Do you think Darkthrone musical direction detonates a new fashion in the scene as you does with Black Metal in the early 90’s? Do you still has that excitement to the new Norwegian Black Metal bands? Did you already gave up with Death Metal scene since you only recommend me those old Thrash metal mongers...
When we started playing primitive black metal ourselves in EARLY 1991, of course we didnt' listen to 90s bm AS IT DIDN’T EXIST. We only listened to 80s black metal and in our minds this was kind of the black metal we made.

When mid 90s styles came with Dimmu Borgir it was nice to listen to their 93 rehearsal, but when they went to the studio it was not so cool anymore. Many bands played like Burzum but had more modern sound, it was a copy, and they had "wrong" solutions ..also copies of our “Transilvanian Hunger” style just became totally boring after a very short time, and i was never interested in listening to copies of what i did myself, BECAUSE I ALWAYS MOVE ON after writing songs, albums, lyrics ..and i have no interest in listening to copies. But some are good. like Tangorodrim. (Yeah! I love them)

Now I am nervous about making metal punk into a trend, I hope it will not happen. but this style has been underground for so long, it was bound to get a revival anyway. I mean, almost no one was talking about a band like WARFARE in the 90s. But i listened to them always since I got one of their albums in 1987.


In 87 I got a bit tired of thrash metal (or else we would have played total thrash in 87, but we didn't. We had a lot of punk and sludge (Celtic Frost slow style/Dream Death).

In 1990 totally tired of death metal. In 93/94 totally tired of black metal. But this is not totalitarian! it doesn't mean I didnt listen to the style. I am speaking GENERALLY, not specifically! there are always exceptions!!! in 94 it was the 3rd time I started to support thrash more than usual, since then I never quit haha!

Lyricwise, it does changed, right? It is still evil, but its like rock & roll lyrics. More straight forward and 'in-yo-face' kinda lyrics, is it?
YEAH, it's "STREET LYRICS" - but again that's just SOME of the songs. Ted also write lyrics, and I also wrote very emotional lyrics like “Norway in September”!! I am a result of a lifetime of music and lots of experience.

You don’t like to spend you time in rock pub but in techno club, as the chicks there far more interesting. And I read in local newpapers about System Of A Down new album which claimed to have your influences on it... all these things in media really make you a legend, Fenriz...
It is very embarrassing that System Of A Down continue to site me or Darkthrone as influence, they are modern metal and once in 98 or 00 I left a party because someone was playing it. I didn't know what band it was, I just left. Later someone told me it was System Of A Down.

And the first story about clubs is a TOTAL LIE. And since 2005 I stopped going to the clubs, and I am not interested in meeting more girls since 1990, as I always had a steady girlfriend.

I didnt' drink until 1990. Before I was only into music and 80s tape trading underground. After 2005 with Oscar from OLD opening my eyes, I returned to only work in the underground and almost stop drinking again.
I tried to be a social person from 1990-2005. But then I had enough, I found out after all that time that I am NOT a social person and that I have WAY too many people in my life anyway. I am cutting down.

What do you really miss from those old days? It is a whole different scene today, right? Like if before bands only release a fucking tape and spread it around themselves, replying interviews with letters, etc...
It's still exactly the same. my mailbox is always full, and I send out at least 3-4 letters a week with burnt cd's (instead of tapes) but the scene is now releasing tape like never before, Flo of THRASH ATTACK zine just made his own TAPE ONLY label with first relase IRON KOBRA which is great speed/heavy metal (covering THOR), and I get tapes from ALL over the world. I prefer cd'r's cuz I already have a system with my discman at work. Anyway, the mail is the most important for the underground still, mixed with computers. It's the best of both worlds. Only FUKK OFF to Greek postal system and Frankfurt mail that STEALS PACKAGES!!!

The biggest difference between 80s underground and these days, is that everyone has an opinion now, and they can spread it like the WEAK VIRUS that it is. In 80s the underground was purely CONSTRUCTIVE, if someone had a negative opinion they had to form a band and sing about it to get their opinion through. capice?

Sorry, but I can’ help to ask you this: What do you think about Mikael Jackson?hehehe...
He did the best stuff in late 60s and late 70s, I think. Probably first Jackson 5 album ABC and then OFF THE WALL is the only records worth having (i am the music police).

I remember (in old interviews) you said the best performances you watched was Iron Maiden “Powerslave” tour. Was that from video tape? You’re not keen in playing live but don’t you enjoy other bands perform?
No, it was “Live After Death” on video in ca 2001. But before that I saw some live show from 82 and 83 (back when I was a kid) with Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Def Leppard, Quiet Riot etc ...I watched those shows to death, but it was on video taped from tv...I never wanted to see a show, my friends wanted to go to Iron Maiden but I refuse. I hate crowds. And I played my first gig with Darkthrone in may 1988 BEFORE I EVER SAW A LIVE SHOW IN PERSON.

Later that year I saw my very first gig, was Slayer with Candlemass and I hated it - not because of the music but because of the OTHER PEOPLE. They acted like total sheep, and actually standing in line outside before the show was a sheep-treatment, and I hate crowds and standing in line. Then everybody bought the tour shirts and walked around in them like brainwashed idiots.

The month later I got a steady job, and I started instead to go to BLITZ, Oslo's punk house. It was more individualistic there, but I never made any friends there. Just bought records, ate some waffles (famous waffles) and watched hundreds of GREAT gigs.


Anything else say to our readers? Thanks and keeps on rocking....
ALL MUSIC FREAKS!! GO TO OUR MYSPACE, DARKTHRONE OFFICIAL! it is an OASIS for people into underground metal! new band of the week every week. over 30 so far! Thank you for reading and supporting real underground metal!

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