Believe in The Sorcery? Interview With Maurizio
Well some of you will ready know about this brutal Canadian outfit for their extreme music with a very aggressive approach. The band have just released their 1st full length release entitled "’Sorcery“" which is on the German label Nuclear Blast. The band are know for the total O.T.T. vocal's which make Kevin from Brutal Truth sound like Pearl jam vocalist.
I managed to have a chat with bassist Maurizio to find out more about this extremely brutal band which are making quite a up stare in their own country at the moment. The interview was done a couple of day's before the band packed their bag's for Europe on a monster tour with: Deicide, Cathedral, Brutal Truth, Fleshcrawl and some other bands. Well here is what Maurizio had to say when I put the following question's to him. Check out their new lp, it's rather good.
So when did the band form & has there been any line up changes since you formed?“.
"Well we formed the band in 91 and we had two member line up changes which were our guitarist who was Stephane who was with us originally with our old drummer which played on the "Mystical Gate..." & that was a demo. Our new drummer Max played on the new album and that's the line up since then."
So are you still friend's with the old member's and what are they doing now?“.
"Well the old drummer is one of my best friend's who I still hang out with, but the other one is a little distant so I don't see much of him. He had a attitude problem which we couldn't tolerate & control so he got kicked out!."
As a band what other name's did you have for the band if there were any?“.
"Well we didn't have any actually as we were just looking around trying to find something that would fit our music. Trying to find a name was so hard because there are so many band's out there and all the name's were almost taken. We wanted some to do with the destruction of the earth, something really fucked up!, so that's why we choose the name Kataklysm."
So what does the band's name mean?“.
"Well it mean's like a tornado the destruction of the earth, the last day of the earth were everything will be destroyed, the Kataklysm."
Are your lyric's based on the typical Death Metal style or are they different?“.
"My singer is really into it, but I prefer the political side of lyric's, like talking about thing's today & spiritual thing's too."
So who are your influences as a band & how do they fit with the style of music you are playing?. would you say you sound like Brutal Truth?“.
"Like everybody else we got our root's right?, like: Napalm Death, Celtic Frost, that started it all off. We then started to get influenced by thing's around us like the news and the way people can get aggressive, so that influenced us. For the lyric's our singer reads a lot of book's and it's like he invents his own stories on the mystical thing. The band is based on aggression like thing's that are around you that is aggressive in life we take it on put it into our music.
As for us sounding a like bit like Brutal Truth, well yes I guess we do a bit because we are fast with the drum blast beat's. I think we have a edge over Brutal Truth because our drummer can hold the blast beat's longer. It's cool if it's Brutal Truth compared to Metallica, then there's a problem ha!."
My next question is about your bass playing, do you think it sound's like Epidemic & Seance,would you agree with me on that?“.
"Yes I would say it sound's a bit like those band's with a little Napalm Death, but I try to have a sound which is a little more original then that which is really powerful & you can hear everything I am playing. A lot of people are impressed with my sound live and they are always trying to see what gear I use on stage. I have worked hard to get my own sound."
So how would you describe your music, is it grind or what?“.
"I would say it's very powerful and in your face approach and very energetic music. When we started playing here in Canada people started to label us as a hyper blast band so we kept that, as we are a lot heavier live. Our music is very heavy & also catchy and it has a edge on it that people like. we try to give our fan's more than just a 3 chord riff in each song."
So how long have you all been playing your instrument's as a band?“.
"Well Max has been playing drum's for 8yrs, Sylvain has been singing now for 4yrs, Jean has been playing guitar now for 7yrs and I have been playing bass for 5yrs. So my singer & myself have the least experience in the band, even though we formed the band.
At this point thing's started to get a bit side tracked, we couldn't help laughing as I asked Maurizio about his singer, when I said you can't understand what the hell Sylvain is singing. I also told him that he sound like a lunatic in a straight jacket in a nut house. I even told Maurizio that Sylvain makes Glen Benton sound like Bon Jovi, ha-ha!.
(Laughing) Yes I guess he does sound crazy in a straight jacket and I can see your point. He's one crazy mother fucker-ha!."
Tell me a bit about your demo which was pressed onto CD, who's idea was it to release it onto cd & do you think it was a good idea to re-release it?“.
"Well we got formed in May of 91 & in February of 92 we released it. We worked on it which was the "Death's Gates Of..." with all the old members and it took us a year to get interest from Nuclear Blast to get our contract. We wasn't signed to N.B. when the "Mystical Gate..." came out, and I think we did pretty good considering the scene is over saturated we made a little dent in the underground.
Our demo sold very well & N.B. issued it and they sold 50 in a month & then they sold 50 in another month. So maybe they thought it would sell so they decided to press it onto cd, which it sold very well so N.B. offered us a deal for us to record some album's. I think it was a good move to release it onto CD because we wanted to prepare a mini CD for people to hear what we sounded like and we thought it would help with the album sale's when it got released. The mini CD sold that well that we were suppose to go on tour with Gorefest but we didn't want to tour until the album came out so we could have a longer set and that people would already know us."
So what other label's approached you beside N.B.?“.
"Well we don't want to say to much in case something happens with N.B., there has been label's which are as big as N.B. or if not bigger than N.B.. We did'nt give a shit about the label, it was what they could do for us as long as the were into us and supported us that's what mattered.
So N.B. really made us feel like they wanted us. When we 1st started out we had interest's from EMI in Canada which is a really big label. They wanted to press an album for us but we turned it down because we knew we couldn't sell 100.000 copies. They came to one of our show's and it was packed but we couldn't sell the amount they wanted us to sell."
So is the 1st release selling well for a demo onto CD?“.
"Yes I think it did sell rather well, it sold so far something like 10.000 copies which is cool."
How do you compare your lyric's on the debut cd to the latest one, are they the same lyrical stance?“.
"Well The "Mystical gate.." deal's with the afterlife, the reincarnation, what happens afterlife & this album deal's with the evolution of man since the beginning and more with the magic and stuff. I think it's in the same base as the "Mystical gate" but it's more involved, the lyric's are more evolved & there's more to offer because it's an album. The lyric's are really mind blowing, there not gory because everybody does that and I don't give a shit about it.
Cannibal Corpse were the first band to do it and I think they were the best, so I got to respect them for it. It's like there's new band's coming out there and all they can sing about is the same thing, which gets boring (’Ed: I Agree“) and a lot of band's are doing it because there favourite band's are doing it. Cannibal Corpse to it best that's for sure.
I think the lyric's on the new album are pretty much in the same aspect, sort of a follow up to the debut cd but we are talking about a different subject. The new lp is more about before afterlife, were as the mini cd is about the afterlife."
So what did N.B. offer you which was better from all the other label's?“.
"They made sure that we got at least 2 tour's for this album & it depends on how well the album sells could make us tour the U.S. as well as here again. We have right's to do our own t. shirt's that we can sell and we make 100% profit and we have good distribution with Nuclear Blast and they are doing a lot of promotion for us.
The reason why we went with N.B. was because we knew we could go on tour and this is a label that make's you tour, and that's very important for us and any band."
How long is the contract with Nuclear Blast?“.
"The deal is for 5 album's and this is the first release, the mini CD doesn't count.
Are you happy with the way N.B. are handling your business affair's?“.
"Well they are a bit unorganized because they have so many band's and not enough staff working for them, this is what I think. You have always got to push them and if they want to do something they have to think about it and by the time they get back to you it's too late. We are always pushing them because we want this band to go somewhere.
They said they wanted us to do only 5 interview's and we said forget it!, we want more than that. So we pushed them to get us more, and if we dont push the label then they think that we aren't interested and they will give up on us and any other band for that matter."
So could you tell me what each song is about, even though you didn't write the song's if you know what they are about?
"Well our singer told us what the song's are about, and when we compose we go into the lyric's and compose by the lyric's. The song "’Sorcery“" is about the good and evil, the power and war's & magic. Like on the cover you can see the sorcerers are worshipping the black hole & and the Kataklysm is the log which is the sun trying to block it.
Next is "’The Rebirth Vortex Of Creation“" is about the creation of the human kind, the evolution from day one to now. There's tow chapter's which is a story line. The other part's of the song are a trilogy that does that and talk's about, it's 3 chapter's rolled up into one. The chapter's are: "’Mould In A Breed“", "’Whirlwind Of Withered Blossom's“", "’Feeling The Neverworld“".
Next is "’Elder God“", I'm not sure about this one, all I know is that it deal's with the spiritual side of the other side, it's a war between murdock which is a good god and Satan which is the other guy and there fighting. Next is ’The Resurrected Portail Of Heaven“" is about a guy who gets possessed by the son of Satan.
He's possessed and he's trying to get out of it by mind control and he can't because the guy is fucked up and he's getting burnt. ’Garden Of Dream's“" is a trilogy, a chapter and they talk about it.
Well in this song he's starting to feel as if he's getting Possessed. Let's just say that in this world Satan just wanted to take a person from out of nowhere and he wanted this guy to be possessed and he wanted his son to be through this guy's eyes, so this guy could see and be the son of Satan.
Next is "’Once Upon Possession“" now that he's possessed now that zygote is trying to get out of him. This is also part of "’Dead Zygote“", which is a egg of a women, but this egg has no soul, the son of Satan. The last song is a instrumental called "’World Of Treason“". This was done to show people that we are not just a wall of noise, we can play our instrument's and we are a heavy band but we can play."
So where was the the album recorded and who by?. I understand that it was done in a famous studio in Canada were the like's of U2 & Bryan Adam's has recorded, is this true?“.
"Well the album was recorded at a studio here in Canada called "’Le Studio“" which is a very big studio here in Canada. Yes the band's mentioned have recorded there & their LP's was done by the same guy who did our album, his name is Glen Robinson.
We were looking for a producer to record this album & we wanted Colin Richardson to do it because he gave Bolt Thrower a great sound. He was a bit expensive for us so we looked around and found Glen. Glen has never done a Death Metal band before and he said he would like the experience of doing our album, at first we wasn't to sure because he has never done this music before and we thought he would make us sound like Bon Jovi or something.
He said he would let us do what we wanted, so that was kind of cool. In the end he was really good for us, he gave us a good sound and this album was recorded live. Everything was done at once except for the vocal's which were done after because if we had of done the vocal's live they would of got lost in the recording."
Would you work with Glen again if you had the chance?“.
"Yes we would work with Glen again, he only live's in New York which is'nt that far from were we live. He said he defiantly liked working with us and he wants to work with us again. He said we were very tight and we were better to work with than Voi-Vod, We'll have to see if does the 2nd album or not. I'm a big fan of Colin Richardson because he makes Bolt Thrower sound so heavy.
I understand that you never had any special guest's on this album, but if you had the chance on the next record who would you have?“.
"We would like to have Jensen from Séance if he's interested, I think he's got very good talent & a good guitarist and he's knows what he's doing. He's the guy who's managing the band even though they had a manager, I felt that he was doing the whole job."
So Maurizio are you and the band happy with the final result's of the album, or do you think it could of been better?“.
"I think the whole album stand's up for it's self and I think it's got a lot of power & energy and it came out the way we wanted it to which is in your face and it blast's you away. There was only one song which I wanted to be heavier as it didn't come out to well, this was "’Once Beyond Possession“", which live people go totally crazy over but it didn't come over the way we wanted it to on the album, the rest I think is very heavy and we like it."
So who did the cover for this album & was there any other cover's and titles in mind?“.
" Like the cover for this album I had no part in it but I did for the 1st CD. I didn't like the cover to much on this one because I didn't like the way the sorcerers were made and I think he did a job which was done very fast and he would of taken his time you know. He did'nt put alot of time into it and I think it look's a bit to cartoon'ish for me. You know the lyric's are suppose to be very serious & I wanted something which was a bit more serious with a lot of colours and more professional. This cover was done by the same guy who did the 1st one, his name is Sv Bell.
As for the second part of your question, well we was originally going to call the album "’The Rebirth Vortex Of Creation“" but the title was too long, so we thought fuck it why not call it "’Sorcery“".
Are you doing a video for this album, if so which track?“.
"Supposedly Nuclear Blast are saying we are doing a video but I'm not sure. We don't want to do a video right now because I don't think they have the budget to do one for us yet. They did that "’Death Is Just... PT3“" video which I think is shit, it's all done on a 8mm camera and I'm not into that because if I do a video I want to do it professionally. The whole band & our manager don't want to it unless it's done properly."
Now could you tell me what band's you've played with in your career?. Also what band would you like to tour with if you had the chance?“.
"Well we've played with: ’Incantation“, ’Anal Cunt“, ’Entombed“, ’Cannibal Corpse“, ’Sinster“, ’Cynic“, ’Suffocation“, ’Broken Hope“, ’Deicide“, ’Cathedral“, ’Brutal truth“ and more.I would like to tour with ’Life Of Agony“, I also Like ’Downset“, ’Biohazard“ are cool, I like this sort of music. I can't see our band playing with ’Offspring“ or ’Pearl Jam“ which are totally shit!, I hate grunge."
When will you be touring Europe & the UK?“.
"It's hard to say about the UK Jase, we are going on tour in Europe with Deicide and another 4 band's. It seems as if place's like Spain, Portugal, and England doesn't seem to have a scene (’ED- That's Not True About The UK, We Do. So All Foreign Band's Play Here“) that is what I have heard, maybe I am wrong, so I'm sorry to the UK reader's, no offence. I think the thing that fuck's you guy's up is the sea which you have to travel across."
So do you have anything to say too your fan's and my reader's. I would like to thanx you for the interview and I wish you and the band & Ali well.
"I hope people will continue to support the underground as it's important, and if people don't then the band's wont get signed and be heard. Thanx to our fan's for there support and we'll see you on tour soon!. Thanx to you Jason for the interview, I wish you well with the zine and I hope your still doing it in another 6yrs. later dude!."