A BRIEF Q & A WITH DIGESTOR FROM GHOUL. (BY REYNOR...
TFM (Reynor Diego): On the eve of their upcoming tour with legendary GWAR and Municipal Waste, Creepsylvania's finest purveyors of all things inexplicable, GHOUL, descended upon Santa Cruz, CA. last Saturday February 25, 2012 for a warm up show at the infamous Blue Lagoon. Without mercy, GHOUL proceeded to annihilate the sleepy surf town-leaving no survivors in their path of mayhem. From the wreckage, Digestor graced TFM with his presence to answer some questions. This is the premise, you're on death row and the time for your execution has arrived. How would you spend your last day on earth? You are allowed three records...
Digestor: Carcass-Symphonies Of Sickness, Megadeth-Rust In Peace, Mahavishnu Orchestra-Birds Of Fire.
TFM: One film?
Digestor: Dawn Of The Dead, the original.
TFM: One book?
Digestor: 1984 by George Orwell.
TFM: Three visitors?
Digestor: Hunter S. Thompson, Marty Friedman, and Dissector from GHOUL.
TFM: Last meal?
Digestor: Barbecue ribs and the normal stuff that comes with ribs, oh...and some beer.
TFM: Final message for the world?
Digestor: I'm really sorry, sorry for everything I've done.
TFM: Music for your funeral?
Digestor: GHOUL - As Your Casket Closes
TFM: Don't forget to catch GHOUL on tour with GWAR & Municipal Waste (also with Kylesa & Legacy Of Disorder in select cities) for more info on tours, merchandise or other sick happenings with GHOUL go to http://www.creepsylvania.com/
INTERVIEW WITH CARL DUSSELJEE (VOCALS) FOR THE...
TFM: Massive Assault have been punishing the world with some of the most crushing death metal that's not to be reckoned with. Furious and brutal they come to us from Hoogeveen, Drenthe in the Netherlands. With a new album just right around the corner, we had a very interesting and informative interview with Carl, vocalist for the band. Carl, can you tell us how this all came about?
Carl: In 2002 Fredde and I started jamming with (ex-drummer) Rob, with the intention of playing loud pounding Death Metal! Because our other bands fell apart one after the other, we were getting even more serious, so we needed a better sounding name then Mortar (the name we started jamming under). Since guitarist Fredde's wall of sound was (and still is) notorious, both in sound and volume, we soon picked up the name Massive Assault. It fitted the music perfectly! And so, from 2003 onward to the present day we are creating Death Metal the way we like best under the name Massive Assault.
TFM: Death Strike, your new album is just about to be released. And it sounds fucking fantastic, the way death metal should be played. Ugly, furious and brutal. How did you approach this album in the recording studio, compared to your previous album Dystopian Prophecies? Did you do anything different or try different recording methods?
Carl: Thanx for the compliments! Well, before this album we released an EP, entitled "Slayer", which was the first with me back on vocals again. Jos switched places from vocals to bass, because that place was vacant after "Dystopian Prophecies" and Gideon came back to torture the drums again. So, that is the first big difference if you compare the approach to "Death Strike" and the first full-length. Also the recording-sessions followed each other up faster. We didn't wait for a few weeks to record the next thing, but went in full speed ahead! Fredde has grown in recording skills as well. He bought heaps of new gear for his Dirty Bird Studios and I think that shines through in the production of the album. All in all I can say that the recordings, producing, mixing and mastering were more intense then any other recordings we did in the past.
TFM: Both albums are extremely well produced. Were both albums recorded with current digital methods or did you use traditional analog methods?
Carl: We've recorded into digital software, but we used real amps with mics in front of a cabinet. We used the re-amp method for both "Death Strike" and our previous "Slayer"-EP. The re-amp method may come in handy if you are unsure of how it would sound like in combination with other sounds or if you want to experiment with different sounds. You can use the clean signal for different kinds of amps and record it again, so it makes it easier to perfect the sound you want to have. So you don't have to play all the guitars over and over again. We used the Boss HM-2 pedal, like on all our releases, with everything turned to the max! This is of course the pedal that you can't miss for that chainsaw-sound we love to hear and which is suited best to the style of music we make. We used 3 kinds of amps for the guitars on "Death Strike", namely the Sovtek Bassov MIG100b, the Marshall Superbass and a Rocktron Transistor amp, which were all combined with each other with different mic-methodes. For the drums we used a combination of traditional micing and sampling via midi-triggering, with the real miced sound highlighted in the drum mix. Those miced signals make the drums sound a little more dirty, which we think is allowed and makes it sound better. The bass was recorded with an overdrive-pedal through and old 70 watt Fender Bassman and we used a tube-mic for the vocals. As you can see we have used a lot of mics for the recording of "Death Strike".
TFM: I think it goes with out mentioning that you're a fan of Tomas Skogsberg and all the classics that were released under his moniker. What can you tell us about this producer legend? If it were within your means to do so, would you work with him?
Carl: Yes, I'm a fan of the sound that was created first at the Sunlight Studios and I really dig those classics! That typical buzzsaw sound was, as I think nearly everybody would know, "discovered" by Leffe Cuzner, while Nihilist was recording a demo over there. After Nihilist recorded there and had this great sound on their demo, there were more bands that wanted to record there because of that "Sunlight"-sound. I read somewhere (maybe in the "Swedish Death Metal" book by Daniel Ekeroth) that Tomas Skogsberg didn't know at first what to do with this new genre. I'm quite sure that our guitarist Fredde, who's done the recording and production of "Death Strike", would really like to have a chat with Tomas at least. In fact, I think that is also something I would want to do! So, I'm sure that we wouldn't even come close to something resembling "working" with Tomas, because Fredde would ask him all kinds of stuff about recordings and productions and I would ask him all kinds of shit about everything else, haha! It's no secret that I'm interested in all kinds of stories, may it be about music, musicians or anything else for that matter!
TFM: So with the new album due to come out, are there plans for a tour/festival participation to support the album?
Carl: We will be playing two festivals early this summer, namely Protzen Open Air (with among others Malevolent Creation, Hatesphere, Demonical, Goregast and Avulsed) and Gahlen Moscht Metal Open Air (with among others Master, Debauchery and Fleshless). Furthermore, we are planning a small tour for this June as well, but I can't say much about that at the moment. And then there are the shows that are confirmed in both Holland and Belgium. There are also talks about doing yet another small tour in Autumn/Winter this year, as well as more weekend-tours. So, we keep ourselves busy. We're always supporting our albums everywhere we go!
TFM: Any new favorite records you've been spinning lately that would deserve a worthy mention?
Carl: The latest new record I've bought is the new Undergang release, called "Til Døden os Skiller". That one absolutly kills! It's very low and the vocals are beyond gutteral! That one spins around a lot lately. I also think that by the time this interview will be online, I will have had the chance to listen to the new Entrapment 7" and the new Asphyx (Deathhammer) more then a few times! Next to that I'm looking forward to hear the new releases by Funeral Whore and Bodyfarm! The stuff I heard so far really makes me look out to those releases. The other newer (read: 2011) Death Metal-releases I listen to a lot lately are Goregast's "Desechos Humanos", Entrails' "The Tomb Awaits", Demonical's "Death Infernal" and Morbus Chron's "Sleepers In The Rift". I'm not really sure if you can add all or any of the above to the "new favorite records"-list now... Maybe I can answer this one in half a year from now, hahaha!
TFM: Any chance that you guys might make out to the U.S. in the future? If you did have the opportunity to be out this way what bands would you like to come out here with?
Carl: If we'd had the chance to go to the U.S. we'd definitly do that! We'll see what the future brings us on this matter! If I'd have to choose some bands from overseas, then I think it would be awesome to do some shows with the likes of Fatalist, Funebrarum or our Mexican friends from Zombiefication, but it would also be cool to do some shows with Black Breath and Tragedy. We've done a show with Tragedy in Holland last year, which was really great! And if we'd have the choice to choose some "bigger" bands, we'd most definitly want to play with Obituary, Suffocation or Malevolent Creation (or Steel Panther, hehe). But, to be honest: If we'd have the chance to play in the U.S., it wouldn't really matter with what band we'd play. They experience itself would be awesome enough!
TFM: Are you still working with Crash Landing Records? I've noticed involvement from F.D.A. Rekotz for the new album. Is this just for distribution?
Carl: Both "Death Strike" and the "Slayer"-EP have been released by labels other then Crash Landing Records. "Death Strike" is released by FDA Rekotz and the "Slayer"-EP has been released by Herrie Records Inc. We do however still have contact with Crash Landing Records, since they are friends of us as well. Crash Landing Records decided to focus on vinyl only for the future, since they are vinyl-junkies. There are talks with them to release something on vinyl, but I can't say much about that at the moment. The deal we have penned down with FDA Rekotz is for "Death Strike", which will be unleashed next week and a month later a worldwide distribution will be started. The promotion for our second full length has been great so far. We're really looking forward to where this release will take us. We'll see what will happen! One thing is certain: we won't be sitting on our asses! We'll be recording within 2 months again for a split release... So, the battle continues!
TFM: What topics do you deal with lyrically?
Carl: My lyrics deal with war, misery and death. There are 4 songs on "Death Strike" that deal with war. The first being "Driven Towards Death", which is the opener for this album as well. It's about the horrors of WWI, which was the first "modern" war. The second one is "Operation Anthropoid". This one is about the nearly failed attempt on the life of Reinhard Heydrich, who's also known as the "Butcher of Prague". The third song about war is "Turning Tides", which is about the Korean War and the last one is about my views on war, called "Chained". There are also songs about the inner struggles on "Death Strike", which are called "Dismal Life" and "Aggressive Depression". Then there is "Cycle Of Violence", which is about how someone becomes a serial killer or mass murderer, and "Finished Sympathy". The last mentioned is about my feelings towards my blood relatives. Jos wrote the lyrics to the other 2 songs, called "Pride" and "Plead Not Guilty". The first being about the judgement one passes on the other and the second being about how we all rape Mother Earth and how she sends the storm and the rats upon us. As you can see, we are a very positive band lyrically, haha!
TFM: Well Carl, I wanna wish you the best. I hope this year is very promising for Massive Assault. The new album will certainly crush some skulls. Good luck and keep it brutal. Thank you for your time. And hope to see you in the future. Cheers!
Carl: Thank you for this interview, Marco. We wanna wish you the best with Total Fucking Mayhem aswell! And be sure that we'll be cracking more skulls in the future! Check www.myspace.com/massiveassault or www.facebook.com/massiveassault regularly for updates.
INTERVIEW WITH SHANNON FRYE (DRUMMER) FOR AVENGER...
TFM: Avenger Of Blood, a Las Vegas based thrash/deathmetal outfit who has been blasting the metal scene with their unrelenting blend of death and thrash. Old school titans like Kreator come to mind when listening to Avenger Of Blood. It is obvious that the old influences blended in with a fresh approach are there and are what lay down the foundations for their sound. A great blend, no doubt!!! We had a few words with founding member and drummer Shannon Frye, here's what he had to say. What can you tell us Shannon about how Avenger Of Blood came together?
Shannon: Avenger of Blood formed up in the Bay Area. San Jose to be exact. Our old singer/guitarist Eric and I formed this starting in 2002. We got a bass player back then named Vince and we started writing. Vince didn't work out and we got Cesar to take his place. Shortly after, we recorded our 1st demo that we simply called "Demo 2003". We brought in another guitarist named Kris and played a few shows and shortly after we moved to Las Vegas. We got a new bassist named Shawn and a guitarist named Nathan. We played quite a bit and recorded our 1st album "Complete Annihilation" which was released in 2005 on the now defunct JCM Records. Nathan quit shortly after and Marc came into the band and we recorded 2 songs for the "Speed Kills... Again" compilation for Heavy Artillery Records. We signed with that label and recorded Death Brigade. Before it was even released, both Eric and Shawn quit. Things went downhill fast from there and trying to keep it going we brought in Sal to take the vocalist/guitarist spot and new bassist Chris. Problems occurred and Sal was dismissed and we brought in a guitarist Mike and Chris switched to vocals. We did a split 7" on Relapse Records as part of the Speed N' Spikes series and we were featured on Vol 5. This era of the band was very short lived Sal came back and Mike was relieved of his duties as a guitarist. Problems of unseen and nonfixable proportions arose and I put the band on hold. We are now back at the reforming part with new guitarist Brandon, Marc and myself.
TFM: Glad to hear you guys are back. I know it's been quite some time since AOB released material ( I believe it was '08 when the last full length came out), now that the band is reformed, is their new material in the works?
Shannon: So far we have 5 new songs and they are real punishing! I am real happy with them and I know others will like them just as much as we all do! We should be recording those 5 new songs in March or April and continue writing for our next album!
TFM: What brought the band out to Las Vegas? That move from San Jose was a very big change for the band.
Shannon: Well in 2003 I helped my dad move here and a few jobs were offered to me. Living in the Bay Area was real expensive and I had gotten laid off from my job. So we decided to relocate here. In many ways I am glad we did, because it really pushed us. It still has some difficulties, but I don't regret it!
TFM: Shannon, do you remember how old you were when you decided to pick up the drumsticks? What motivated you to become a drummer?
Shannon: Well for me I started off as a guitar player when I was 12. I bought a drum set when I was in high school at about 15 years old and just played basic stuff on it. I learned stuff like AC/DC, Ozzy, Dio, and the classic metal stuff to start off but never took it serious. It wasn't until 1992 that I really started to take drumming seriously so I would have been 20 years old about that time. I've always played on and off since then. The things that motivated me to become a drummer are quite extensive. Anyone who knows me, knows I am always an angry individual so beating skins really helps that out. Plus when I was playing guitar, I could never find a drummer. Everyone always told me I look so "at home" behind the set so that was another factor. Also hearing Bill Ward, Tommy Aldridge, Frankie Banali, Steve Riley, and some of the old classic metal drummers really inspired me as well. Also I have some real good friends that play that are also a big inspiration like Rhett Davis of Gravehill, Rob Alaniz, Bob Gitreaux of Ruthless and more. I guess I was just made to be a drummer!
TFM: What does your current set consist of? Would you say it's your dream (ideal) setup?
Shannon: My current set is a 7 piece Mapex MBirch, although I only use 6 of them for now. I seen the set in a Mapex catalog and knew right then and there that I wanted that set! I would say it is my ideal set up, though I wish I could set it up a little better for better access and playing ability. I would love to get a new rack for it and then I think it will work out much better. I do love the sound though! For cymbals, I have mostly Sabian but I have 1 Zildjian crash and a piece of shit cheap Paiste. I need more cymbals!
TFM: What would you consider to be the top 5 most influential bands/albums for you?
Shannon: Thats a hard question to answer because there are so many albums and bands that have been an influence on me in a lot of ways. Motley Crue - Shout At the Devil. I was in grade school in North Dakota when this came out and I would say that this was my true introduction to metal. They were considered metal at that time though! Quiet Riot - Metal Health. When I heard this (the day after the Motley Crue album) I was hooked instantly. It made me want to be a musician that's for sure! Slayer - No album in particular. I remember hearing this band on KNAC when I was a freshman in high school. It was so evil and haunting and pretty much scared the shit out of me. I then sought out all their tapes and became a megafan! Everyone I knew for the most part were Metallica freaks, but I was a Slayer freak! haha Cannibal Corpse - Eaten Back To Life. I got this when I was i the Marines when I was stationed in El Paso (Ft Bliss) for my job training. When I put this on I was so blown away. The lyrics had me laughing, the vocals had me laughing, the cover as well. But it was so intense that I had to keep coming back for more punishment! This was also my introduction into death metal. Glad I found this because I became a huge death metal fan! Sadus - Swallowed In Black. Got this the same day as the Cannibal Corpse album and to me this was the most insane psychotic band ever to exist. I was enamored by everything this band had. The vocals were just pissed off, the drums were faster than hell, the bass was insane as it can get, and the riffs hooked you and made you want to hurt people! Put it all together and it made you feel like you were just as pissed off as they were!
TFM: For those that don't live or have never been to Las Vegas, what would you tell them about the advantages/disadvantages when you live in a 24 hour town?
Shannon: Well the advantages of Vegas is that it is another city that never sleeps.The bars are open 24/7. All the convenience stores and grocery stores sell beer/alcohol all night long. There is no last call ever! There is always something to do and lots to see. The casino's here rule the land and there is always something happening at those places whether its a side show of acrobats or a concert happening in a lounge. It's never ending what you see and can do here! The weather in the summer is dry and hot (just how I like it) and you meet a lot of interesting people from all walks of life here! It is something everyone should come and see at least once. Once you come, it becomes a recurring destination because it is a real fun place to be. Now we have the KISS mini golf place opening in March and it gives us freaks even more to do! The disadvantages are that there are tons of snobby people with sticks in their asses! Being a fan of metal music, we get skipped on almost all the good shows. Metal in this city is not that highly accepted. People here often times become gambling addicts. It can also get quite pricey here. I haven't really experienced many disadvantages at all really. But for all its worth, I love it here!!
TFM: Shannon, aside from new songs being recorded like you mentioned earlier, does 2012 look like a good year for AOB?
Shannon: Well, we are gonna record 5 new songs and see where things go from there. Its real tough finding the musicians needed to keep the band going. I don't get why its so difficult! We sound nothing like we used to and for me since the vocalist on the 2 full length albums we did is no longer in the band, its basically a whole new band so to say. The bassist on the 2 full length albums isn't in anymore either! In reality though, we are a lot harsher, faster, angrier, more aggressive and more balls out with things than we were before. I like our new songs a lot better than our previous stuff! If we can just find those last remaining pieces of the puzzle which is a vocalist and a bassist, then its balls out!!! But We'll keep recording anyways if we don't find those people! Avenger of Blood carried this scene for a long time and we busted our asses!!! I made a lot of our dreams come true and am still willing to do that because there is no way in hell that I will let it die now!
INTERVIEW WITH GRIND FUC KER (DRUMMER) FOR THE...
TFM: How does the Infected Asshole develop?
Grind Fuc Ker: Infected Asshole was developed about 5 years ago but it wasn't until 2 years ago that we made our official debut as a band. Our sole purpose is to play just the way we like it, without being close minded and to do things distinctivly in a subgenre. We like to play goregrind, and that's what we do. The whole band was developed by Vann (bass) and myself (drums). We played together in a previous band and were getting fed up with the direction that band was taking. So we decided to look for new musicians to start up a new project. Initially we started off as more of a death metal act, but were quickly drawn to the porngrind sound. In the end we opted for goregrind which is basically a mixture of our 2 favorites. Later, I would ask Poke if he would sing for us and he said yes. We started off by doing a few covers and then writing some of our own material. We were invited to make our live debut in Pachuca, Mexico. By then we had gone through 2 guitarists who did not meet our expectations. Infected Asshole, contrary to popular belief does not refer to an anal infection but we are refering to a "pendejo" (spanish for dumb ass, idiot, etc.). Thus, you have an Infected Asshole. Typical in a zombie movie, the first one to fall to the wrath of zombies and then is infected. Spreading the infection or disease, that's an Infected Asshole. The initial line up was Poke on vocals, Vann on bass and myself on drums. By the time our second gig came around Diego (guitar) arrived. He saw our show and contacted Vann via myspace. He quickly learned our songs and by the time our 3rd gig came, he was ready to go. That's been our steady line-up since September 2010.
TFM: What material is available from the band?
Grind Fuc Ker: We have an E.P. that was released in December of last year. We uploaded it to the internet as a free download, so our name could get out there. It is titled Craniopagus Parasiticus. We also recorded our full length LP Coup de Poudre under the label Deceiver Records.
TFM: Have you had the opportunity to promote the LP by touring?
Grind Fuc Ker: Not exactly. As a matter of fact, the opportunity to officially launch the LP has been stalled due to logistics at Deceiver Records. Every opportunity that presents itself, we do our part to promote the album. In fact, we have a mini 9 date tour coming up with AHUMADO GRANUJO from the Czech Republic so we'll be promoting the LP with full force!
TFM: What national (Mexican) bands do you believe can be credited with helping launch the underground movement, within extreme music in Mexico?
Grind Fuc Ker: Good question. Well, there are many bands that deserve mention, DISGORGE & SEMEN & before that you can say HOL-A-WIT, PARACOCCI, SHUB NIGGURATH...I'm not sure but truthfully, there are so many. We're also very fortunate that not only did they pave the way for extreme music at a national level but we also have a great relationship with most of them. We also have their support as a new and upcoming act in the scene.
TFM: If you could be the drummer in any given band of your choice, who would it be and why?
Grind Fuc Ker: I could probably say, because they're such a high level band and one of my favorites, I would have to say LAST DAYS OF HUMANITY.
TFM: Can you mention 5 recent bands/albums that you have listened to that have made you say "Holy shit, this is fucking fantastic!"
Grind Fuc Ker: The new SEMEN promo for COPROPHILIC INFECTIOUS PROCESS... SPASM - TABBOO TALES... ABOMINABLE PUTRIDITY - THE ANOMALIES OF ARTIFICIAL ORIGIN... A Russian goregrind band called S.C.A.T. They are brutal and I love them. They also contacted me via Facebook and they also like our stuff! Hahaha! A cybergrind called BONDAGE VULGOR. They are from Brazil and their music is great!.
TFM: What drummer(s) have had an influence for you as a musician?
Grind Fuc Ker: Throughout my life their have been many. From punk influences (MISFITS & SEX PISTOLS) to death metal and progressive drummers. But without a doubt, the strongest influence for me would be John Merryman from CEPHALIC CARNAGE. From a few years ago to recently, he is on the top of my list. His drive and composition are stunning for acheiving those speeds he plays at. He also adds jazz influences and a gravity blast that is beyond compare. He truly is up there for me.
TFM: What will 2012 bring for Infected Asshole?
Grind Fuc Ker: For now, we will continue self promoting our debut COUP DE POUDRE... but in all honesty we have a few new tracks, and were thinking about venturing off into the world of split records. Even though we have previously and unofficially been on one. With no previous notice they just used 3 tracks from the E.P. Hahahahaha. But we have all of the intention of releasing a split and probably another L.P. Their are also some new tours coming up the Mexican Gore Mafia and In The Name Of Gore. Those tours are 1000% a must, and we love to be there.
TFM: Thank you so much for your time and keep the brutality going!!!
Grind Fuc Ker: Thank you for the interview and mostly for keeping in touch with bands in Mexico that are still making some noise!!!
INTERVIEW WITH RAMON (BASS) FROM THE BAND: LOOKING...
TFM: Some time ago, around 1999 in the country of Spain one of the most disgusting, furious and brutal bands is born, that band is Looking For An Answer. Since then, the band has been busy and if you have any doubt about that, just take a look at their releases. 9 splits with some of the most brutal bands on the face of the earth (Agathocles, Catheter, Cripple Bastards and Ratos de Porao, just to name a few), 2 E.P.'s, 3 full length albums and countless of shows under their belts. We had a brief conversation with Ramon (bass) and here's what he told us. Hello Ramon, can you tell us more about how the band got it's start?
Ramon: All this started up about 12 years ago, Felix began programming drum beats to crust/punk music. A few weeks later I joined on bass and soon afterwards Inaki joined as vocalist. Thus, LFAA embarked on a journey as a grindcore band. 3 years later Moya joins on drums and 4 years ago Makoko would finish up the line-up as second guitarist. As you mentioned earlier, 3 full length L.P.'s, 9 splits, 2 E.P.'s and hundreds of shows later is what we have inherited and the end result of what LFAA is today.
TFM: Recently, LFAA has joined the list as another great band that forms part of the Relapse Records roster. Could you tell a little more about that?
Ramon: I do not think we belong to any particular label, Relapse has met with us and has done its job just as Power It Up, Deep Six, Agipunk, Beat Generation, Rescued From Life and other labels with whom we have worked with. We do not like exclusivity, it is important for us to keep control of our editions and edited in different stamps to cover different distribution channels.
TFM: Spain is becoming a country that is known for producing some great bands (LFAA, Machetazo, Wormed, Dishammer (R.I.P.)). What can you tell us about the metal scene in your country? Is it difficult to promote/orgainze gigs in Spain?
Ramon: The MACHETAZO guys are my brothers and one of my favorite bands, WORMED are also great friends since our teenage years, unfortuantely DISHAMMER no longer exists. When it comes to grind, the best bands this country has produced are (in my opinion) in chronological order: SEQZION DEMENZIADOS “Justa Coprocracia?” (1991), RUIDO DE RABIA “Revolución Cósmica” (1993), HAEMORRHAGE “Grume” (1996), DENAK “Grindcore” (1999) and MACHETAZO “Trono de Huesos” (2002). It is now very easy to organize concerts in Spain, in the last 4 or 5 years many people have called to help organize concerts, usually we have always been fortunate to deal with honest people but also have encountered in any one case with a promoter-leech that claim to make your booking a business to scam bands.
TFM: Congratulations on making an appearance at this year's MDF in Baltimore. How do you feel about being part of such a big event?
Ramon: We always prefer small concerts for 150 or 200 people as opposed to major festivals, but, to be able to travel to the USA and to play a festival alongside some of the best bands of all time like AUTOPSY or SAINT VITUS is an honor that we don't deserve.
TFM: For you personally, what would be the top 5 bands/albums that have had the biggest influence for you?
Ramon: Although there are many more, possibly the most notable ones would be: MOTORHEAD "Overkill", METALLICA "Kill 'em All", SLAYER "Reign in Blood" NAPALM DEATH "From Enslavement to Obliteration" and TERRORIZER "World Downfall" as each one of them had a different mark on me at different times of my childhood / adolescence.
TFM: What are your future plans?
Ramon: Right now we are closing dates for a 20 day tour of Europe in July.
INTERVIEW WITH DOPI (DRUMS & VOCALS) FROM...
TFM: Machetazo has it's origins somewhere in the mid to early 90's. A group of friends decided to get together and with a passion for 80's horror and gore movies and extreme music. From there on they have created history, with an impressive discography to playing locally and on the international platform, countless festivals among those. We caught up with Dopi (drums & vocals) for the infamous Machetazo and here's what he had to say. Thank you for your time Dopi, would you start by giving us a brief background of the band?
Dopi: You're welcome dude. Machetazo has been active since 1994, it started more like a noise/grind side project to other bands we had back then, but soon the side project ate the rest of the projects cause it was a lot better while the other bands were just dying in boredom. The concept at the beginning was really funny and weird, just a result of late night reunions with pothead teenagers obessed with horror and gore movies and 80's noise and grindcore, later it got more "serious" and grindcore fused with other influences like death metal and crust.
TFM: Your background with previous (current) bands is impressive. You've played various forms of metal from doom (Worship The Sun, Deadmask), to thrash/crust (Dishammer), deathmetal/grindcore (Machetazo) among other collaborations. It is obvious that you are a fan of all the different genres that the world of metal/punk has to offer. If you could pick one genre of metal/punk that you would consider as one of your favorites, which one would it be and why?
Dopi: This is a very difficult question cause I'm deeply into lots of different music, sometimes it depends on the timing so I'll be more into one or another genre, my personal mood and external influences use to make me walk different paths, but gotta admit that extreme music is always the best, there's nothing like playing fast blastbeats and have some sore throat, it feels so good cause it's a true spiritual comfort, the best way to channel the hate and negativism.
TFM: Of all the collaborations that you have been/are part of, which one would you say is your favorite or the one you enjoy the most?
Dopi: Machetazo has been and still is my fave, the main one, in fact it's the real band, not a studio project or sideband, you know? Machetazo has always been the one that toured the world and released most of the records I've been involved in my life, everything I know about this musical underworld is cause of Machetazo, also with Rober I have a very close musical relationship and we understand each other in a way I haven't experienced before with anyone else. But anyway I always put all my energy and enthusiasm with all the people I use to work, any recording is important, I know I'm very lucky to play with very talented musicians who use to be good friends of mine too, so gotta respect them and put all my effort.
TFM: Machetazo had the opportunity to be part of Maryland Death Fest in 2011, what was that experience like for you?
Dopi: We already played there on 2006 also, but I gotta say it was a lot better on 2011, we stayed there almost the whole fest instead of being on tour so we had the chance to take it easy, watch a lot of fuckin' awesome bands and party with some of our best friends from around the globe. We played a lot of fests but MDF was the best so far, that's for sure, not cause the show itself (we always preffer to play live in small places) but cause of the cool people we only can meet there.
TFM: Spain has a very solid scene as far as the underground scene is concerned. What can you tell us about the scene in your country? Are there any new bands that have recently come forward that have made an impression on you?
Dopi: The underground scene here in Spain is the same as anywhere else right now, too many stupid bands and almost everybody under internet control. But anyway there’s always some exception and sometimes something good arises from the dirt, like the new thrash punk band MANIAC, their new demotape is awesome, check it out!
TFM: "Mundo Cripta" which was released in 2008, was the last full length album that Machetazo released. Since then many e.p.'s, countless splits and some live albums have been released. Are there any plans for a new full length album?
Dopi: I know we always take it easy between full-length albums but to release a new one every year would be nonsense, we don't wanna do that, we rather release EP's and split records with bands we like. But right now we feel it's time to work hard again on a full-length, already started to compose new songs and I guess we'll enter the studio in the summer, so there will be a new Machetazo album this year 2012, we got deals with Doomentia in Europe and Parasitic in USA, it will be a vinyl release only, but it will include the CD version as bonus.
TFM: Your main role in the majority of your projects tends to be that of drums and vocals. It's really not a common thing not only in the metal/punk genre's but just about any genre. Just like yourself are there any dummer(s) that you would consider to be some of your favorite(s)?
Dopi: John Garner from Sir Lord Baltimore is the most incredible drummer/vocalist ever! Chris from Autopsy and Proscriptor from Absu are fuckin' awesome too.
TFM: After you had worked for so long with Razorback Records, after the release of "Mundo Cripta" how has the relationship with Doomentia Records been developing?
Dopi: “Mundo Cripta” on CD was released by Throne in Spain, No Escape in Australia, and that fuckin’ rip-off label Embrace My Funeral in Mexico, the vinyl version was released by Power It Up in Germany. Doomentia released a 7" titled "Desolación Mental" on 2011, and as he did such a great job we decided to keep on working with him for the near future, in forthcoming releases like “Trono De Huesos” LP 10th anniversary reissue and our next album.
TFM: If you could put togehter a tour with 3 bands (other than Machetazo) what bands would those be?
Dopi: I would chose some of my best buddies right now: Aldebaran, Iron Lamb and Brodys Militia. That would be an insane and funny tour, full of musical diversity too!
TFM: What would be your 5 most influential bands and albums?
Dopi: Personally I would say Motörhead “Overkill”, Cirith Ungol “One Foot In Hell”, Baron Rojo "Volumen Brutal", Iron Maiden "Powerslave" and Metallica "Master of Puppets", cause they had a very deep impact on me when I was young, I feel something very special when I play them still today. But about influence in my work with Machetazo I would say Repulsion "Horrified", Autopsy "Mental Funeral", Carcass "Reek of Putrefaction", Terrorizer "World Downfall" and Napalm Death "From Enslavement to Obliteration". All classic shit, there aren't records like those anymore.
TFM: Are there any plans for a North American tour in the near future?
Dopi: Nothing sure yet, but really hope to visit the West Coast someday, can't think of a better place to tour right now.
TFM: Thank you so much for your time Dopi. We hope this new year brings the best for you, all your collaborations and of course Machetazo! Be well and hope to hear from you soon. Greetings!