Tag Archives: Crust Punk

“L’Hardcore è Solidarietà e Lotta, No Business Punk!” – Intervista ai Jilted

Dopo averli visti suonare dal vivo in occasione della decima edizione del Go Fest! nella splendida cornice del centro sociale occupato e autogestito Strike lo scorso settembre, ho pensato, a distanza di qualche mese, che fosse un’ottima idea scambiare due chiacchere con i Jilted, nome storico della scena crust hardcore italiana. Attivo dalla fine degli anni 90, il gruppo di Alessandria rappresenta ancora oggi una garanzia in termini di attitudine e di visione dell’hardcore punk come musica politicamente impegnata, consapevole e intimamente legata a pratiche quali diy, solidarietà e autogestione. Di questo e di molto altro ho parlato nel corso di questa intervista insieme a Fulvio e Koro. No business punk!

Ciao ragazzi! Dato che vi ho visti dal vivo a settembre in occasione del Go Fest! 10, vorrei proprio iniziare da quell’evento. Com’è andata? Cosa significa per voi, band ormai in giro da più di vent’anni, suonare ad un concerto come il Go Fest! che è divenuto negli anni punto di riferimento per tutti gli amanti dei generi più estremi dell’hardcore, del punk e del metal?

Ciao! Il Go Fest 10 è stata un’esperienza veramente unica. Un festival organizzato molto bene, ottima promozione e bands provenienti da tutta Italia,isole comprese (cosa piuttosto inusuale), con una affluenza di pubblico incredibile! Credo di non aver mai visto così tanta gente ad un concerto o festival hc in Italia, se non a fine anni ‘80/inizio ‘90. Probabilmente anche il fatto di non aver potuto organizzare concerti per così tanto tempo a causa delle restrizioni per il Covid-19 ha influito positivamente, la gente aveva voglia di un’esperienza simile.

Quando siamo stati contattati per suonare abbiamo subito accettato molto volentieri, non suonavamo a Roma dal 2014 ed è stato un onore far parte del Go Fest 10 ed è stata la dimostrazione pratica che anche in Italia ci sono molti gruppi validi e molta gente che segue la scena. Abbiamo incontrato amici che non vedevamo da tantissimo tempo,altri che vediamo più spesso, in definitiva una delle migliori situazioni di sempre.

Siete in giro dalla fine degli anni 90, avete visto passare band, mode, spazi occupati, situazioni diverse. Quali sono secondo voi le più grandi differenze all’interno della scena hardcore e punk da quando avete iniziato ad oggi? Cosa pensate si sia perso invece in termini di attitudine, militanza e attivismo rispetto a quegli anni?

(Koro) In quegli anni c’erano sicuramente piu’ spazi,centri sociali autogestiti,squat,negozi di dischi ecc..,erano realta’ molto diffuse in quasi ogni citta’,ed erano una presenza forte sul territorio. oltre a dare un approccio diretto ad una cultura alternativa ed antagonista con la distribuzione di volantini informativi,dischi,cassette,libri,fanzines ecc..,coinvolgevano parecchia gente in ogni iniziativa,concerto,manifestazione. c’era forte interesse e un grande senso di appartenenza. Oggi molti spazi che davano queste possibilita’ sono stati chiusi o sgomberati,ci sono meno punti di riferimento. Ad Alessandria il “Perlanera” e’ molto attivo ed e’ sempre un gran posto da supportare. Come differenze,negli anni 90,ovviamente c’erano mezzi di comunicazione diversi,non c’era tutta la tecnologia di oggi,era tutto un po’ piu’ “artigianale”. Ci si teneva in contatto con gli amici della scena via lettera e telefonate sul fisso a ore pasti,si faceva tanto “tape trading”,si scambiavano paccate di cassette duplicate con amici della zona e in giro per l’Italia per conoscere nuove e vecchie band che non si erano mai ascoltate. Il materiale nuovo dei gruppi andava esaurito in breve tempo,ai concerti davanti ai banchetti delle distro c’erano sempre decine di persone,comprare dischi era una cosa molto piu’ diffusa.

Da sempre suonate un crust-hardcore sia radicato nella tradizione italiana dei Wretched sia influenzato dal crust punk europeo degli anni 80/90. Cosa significa per voi suonare questo genere? Quale pensate possa essere ancora oggi nel 2021 la potenzialità di suonare un punk ancora fortemente conscio dal punto di vista politico e sociale?

(Fulvio) Suoniamo grosso modo lo stesso genere da oltre 20 anni, con qualche miglioramento a livello di sonorità e per noi è fondamentale unire tematiche socio/politiche/ecologiste nonché un’attitudine d.i.y. alla sonorità punk hardcore, tutto l’insieme costituisce l’energia che ci fa andare avanti. Io suono da oltre 30 anni e se non fosse per tutto ciò che sta dietro alla musica fine a se stessa probabilmente avrei già smesso.

Da sempre siamo interessati e affascinati dalle pratiche d.i.y., io ho gestito per anni Angry records (etichetta/distribuzione) e in precedenza collaboravo con Shove records tuttora attiva e ancora oggi “spaccio” qualche disco,libro,fanzine principalmente agli amici della zona. Come hai detto tu, siamo stati influenzati da Wretched, Impact e innegabilmente anche da Wolfpack, Anti-cimex, Doom, Hiatus ma non solo dal punto di vista musicale; continuare a suonare un certo tipo di hc nel 2021 non cambierà sicuramente lo stato delle cose nel mondo ma credo che possa essere utile a qualche “giovane leva” come stimolo per approfondire certe argomentazioni ed avvicinarsi ad un certo modo di pensare e di comportarsi.

Il vostro ultimo disco in studiò e stato Venti di Guerra, pubblicato nel 2013. Finalmente lo scorso anno, in pieno pandemia, avete annunciato le registrazioni di un nuovo capitolo della vostra discografia intitolato “Nell’Ingiustizia e Nel Silenzio”, dandoci in anteprima sia lo splendido artwork di copertina che una nuova devastante traccia “Nel Sangue”. Quali saranno le differenze con i vostri precendenti lavori sul nuovo disco? Su quali tematiche vi siete concentrati per scrivere i testi?

(Fulvio) La registrazione del nuovo LP era in previsione da molto tempo, il precedente “Venti di guerra” era uscito in cd nel 2013 ed in LP nel 2015, ma siamo piuttosto scombinati nel fare pezzi nuovi; inoltre a fine 2017 abbiamo cambiato batterista quindi abbiamo passato un po’ di tempo a provare i pezzi già editi, abbiamo fatto un po’ di concerti e ci siamo poi finalmente decisi a comporre pezzi nuovi e registrare.

Non credo che ci siano grosse differenze rispetto ai dischi precedenti sia a livello musicale che per quanto riguarda le tematiche trattate; qualche pezzo è un po’ più articolato rispetto alla precedente produzione ma pur sempre veloce e aggressivo. Una differenza c’è stata a livello produttivo, infatti siamo finalmente riusciti a registrare nella nostra sala prove, grazie al nostro amico Roberto che ha portato da noi il suo studio mobile “Rec fast die young” e in tre giorni “full immersion” abbiamo sistemato e registrato tutti i 9 pezzi che compongono l’lp e il risultato per noi è molto soddisfacente.

Abbiamo curato anche maggiormente la parte grafica, copertina e foglio interno, da poco abbiamo mandato tutto in stampa ma a causa dei tempi odierni l’lp uscirà per fine Febbraio 2022. Per i testi come sempre ci siamo ispirati alla vita di tutti i giorni, a tutte le porcherie che ci circondano, inquinamento, ingiustizie sociali, razzismo, capitalismo, globalizzazione...

Continuando a parlare del vostro nuovo disco, la cui pubblicazione vedrà ancora una volta la collaborazione di una vera e propria cospirazione di etichette e distro DIY, volevo chiedervi quanta importanza hanno per voi come Jilted pratiche come appunto do It yourself, autoproduzioni, autogestione ma anche solidarietà e supporto reciproco tra band e individui all’interno della scena hardcore?

(Koro) Sicuramente il d.i.y. e’ sempre stato fondamentale per i jilted,fin dall’inizio.con le nostre forze abbiamo attraversato piu’ di 2 decenni e con l’aiuto e supporto di altri gruppi,amici di etichette e distro,siamo riusciti a mandare in stampa diversi dischi e suonare decine di concerti in quasi tutta Italia e all’estero. Anche per questo nuovo lp,la formula e’ sempre quella:una grossa mano da etichette d.i.y. per la stampa e distribuzione. Solidarieta’ e supporto reciproco sono le fondamenta su cui una scena si regge ed esiste.

Nel 2018 avete partecipato alla compilation Non Un Sasso Indietro volume 2, pubblicata dagli amici e compagni di Distrozione. Quella compilation era benefit per sostenere le lotte contro le frontiere e quelle all’interno dei centri di detenzione, quindi quanto sono importanti queste pratiche di solidarietà e complicità con compagnx e individualità che lottano contro lo Stato e il Capitale?

(Koro) Dare la nostra disponibilita’ per concerti benefit e compilation come questa,pubblicata da Distrozione e’ un segnale forte di solidarieta’ verso chi subisce sulla propria pelle gli introiti politici, le logiche e forme repressive di uno stato, che in questi anni ha pianificato questo “mercato” di esseri umani. E’ sicuramente importante per noi quindi supportare e collaborare con chi nel proprio piccolo da’ un segnale di dissenso verso tutto questo.

Nel corso degli anni avete suonato con band fondamentali all’interno della scena crust/hardcore punk europea (ma non solo) come Doom, Visions of War, Asocial, così come con i brasiliani Armagedom e i giapponesi Beyond Description (con cui avete anche condiviso uno split). Quali sono i vostri ricordi di queste esperienze in giro per l’Europa? Quali sono le band con cui siete più orgogliosi di aver condiviso date e palco? Quali invece i momenti e le situazioni che vi hanno dato più fastidio?

(Fulvio) I nostri ricordi dei concerti in giro per l’Europa sono senz’altro bei ricordi, sinceramente non abbiamo mai trovato situazioni “catastrofiche”. Io ricordo con particolare affetto un paio di date in Belgio con Visions of war, Olho de gato e Twisted System, erano le nostre prime date all’estero e mantengo ancora oggi un rapporto di amicizia con alcuni componenti (o ex) di quelle bands. Altri ricordi particolarmente piacevoli sono il tour in Germania con i giapponesi Beyond Description ai quali avevo prodotto l’lp “A road to a brilliant future”, l’Anti-fascist festival a Stoccarda con Behind Enemy Lines, Cluster Bomb Unit….. migliaia di Km , poche ore di sonno accampati ma tante soddisfazioni a livello umano/emotivo. Non parlerei proprio di orgoglio ma direi che siamo stati particolarmente contenti e soddisfatti di aver condiviso il palco con Doom, Mob 47, Wolfbrigade, Sin Dios, Asocial ecc.

Una delle poche situazioni spiacevoli si è verificata qui in Italia, nemmeno molto tempo fa ad un festival,dove (pare) che una delle band abbia preso tutto il poco incasso della serata e se ne sia andata lasciando tutti gli altri gruppi a mani vuote…….il punto non sono i soldi ma il gesto in sé, imbarazzante!

Parlando per un momento della vostra città, vi va di raccontarmi/raccontare a chi leggerà un po’ la storia della scena hardcore punk di Alessandria?

(Fulvio) Alessandria è una piccola cittadina di circa 95 mila abitanti ma ha sempre avuto una scena punk hardcore attiva e prolifica. A partire dai primi anni ‘80,i Peggio Punx hanno dato inizio alla scena punk hardcore in città, hanno contribuito alla nascita del centro sociale “Subbuglio” ed è iniziata un’attività live non da poco che ha visto passare la maggior parte dei gruppi hc italiani degli anni ‘80 e,successivamente (nella seconda sede) anche quelli degli anni ‘90. Dalla fine degli anni ‘80 in avanti sono nate svariate bands quali Permanent Scar, Point of View, Burning Defeat, Insult,Bhopal e altre ancora fino ad arrivare ai giorni attuali con ancora attivi Jilted, Drunkards, Rogue State, Suicideforce, Cranked. Oltre al C.S. Subbuglio, in città ci sono stati il Forte Guercio Occupato che è stato attivissimo per tutti gli anni ‘90 e prima decade dei 2000, oltre a una miriade di gruppi italiani passarono in città Disorder, MDC, UK Subs, Intensity, Agnostic Front, Madball, Sick of it all, No Fx, Blue Cheer e molti altri. Ci fu ancheil C.S. Crocevia ed ora c’è il Laboratorio Anarchico Perlanera molto attivo con concerti, mercatino autobiologic, presentazione di libri ed altre iniziative.

Siamo giunti alla fine di questa chiacchierata/intervista/chiamatela un po’ come volete, quindi vi lascio questo spazio per aggiungere qualsiasi cosa vi passi per la testa. Vi ringrazio ancora per la disponibilità a rispondere alle mie domande, lunga vita ai Jilted!

Grazie a te per la bella intervista e per esserti interessato ai Jilted,speriamo di tornare presto a suonare dal vivo,magari con un po’ di copie del nuovo lp e di proseguire piu’ a lungo possibile!

“Playing Stenchcore Means Resistance” – Interview with Corrupted Human Behavior

I’ll never get tired of repeating how much I’m obsessed with all those sounds and bands that for one reason or another can be traced back to that primordial soup that emerged in the British underground of the 80s and known as “stenchcore”. Fortunately, I can share my love for certain sounds with bands like the Portuguese Corrupted Human Behavior, authors of a splendid debut last year of epic, apocalyptic and bellicose crust punk. Luckily with Kizas, Crostas and Tiago I share not only a musical passion but also the same vision of what punk music has been and must continue to be: a “symbol of resistance” and a threat. In the days when I was writing these questions Corrupted Human Behavior and mainly Crostas were hit by state repression for resisting the eviction of a squat in Lisbon. Complete solidarity and complicity with Crostas, with the 13 comrades arrested for defending Ladra Squat and with everyone who fight against State and Capital and suffer police repression! Let’s not stop making punk a threat to this existing of exploitation, oppression and misery!

Hello dear Corrupted Human Behavior! Let’s start the interview with some obvious biographical notes, would you like to tell us your story? But above all, what is hidden behind your fascinating name and what do you want to convey with it?

Hello dear Disastro Sonoro and dedicated readers, we started this band in mid 2019 when the political situation in our home city of Porto started to tremble and we took the initiative to create a band that would help spread our ideals. As a group of politically revolted friends we started to play together and define our sound both aesthetically and ideologically.

Corrupted Human Behavior is the way we found to indicate the greediness and selfishness that lives inside every capitalist pig that rules our world and way of life because cops, fascists and capitalists are corrupted in a way their humanity is long gone, stiped away by the corruption of money and doing nothing more than terrorism. Its a critique to the Fascist leaders of our modern world but also taking steps back in time to understand that this corruption has been wandering around our minds and cuminities for centuries.

As soon as one comes across your first work and looks at the cover artwork, an acrid stench-crust smell is immediately in the air. What is your relationship with certain sounds? Which are your main influences? But above all, what exactly does it mean for you to play this “sub-genre” of punk?

Me (Kizas) and Crostas started this project when we were underage, and dream that we wanted to accomplish for a long time and for that we listened to lot crust, our main influences since the beginning were always Sacrilege, Bolt Thrower, Amebix as well as Instinct of Survival and Swordwielder and of course Carnage and Misantropia, both bands from Portugal.

For us stenchore is a way to not only write powerful lyrics with meaning along with jawbreaking riffs but not being rebels without a cause. This metallic crust gives us and idea of what the horrors our people and our martyrs have suffered struggling to survive this chaotic social structures that is capitalism and imperialism. The king skull killed in the cover artwork is a direct comparisson to Imperialist leaders that taint our world and that seek to destroy the working class in order to fullfill their foul ideologies. For us, playing stenchcore means resistance, means not giving up the fight and obviously a way for us to sing about all the martyrs that have died in the fight for revolution all aorund the world.

Reqviem for a Broken Blade, the instrumental intro that opens your album, perfectly succeeds in calling to mind landscapes and atmospheres that recall battlefields (among jingling swords, horses neighing and war screams), apocalyptic scenarios and feelings of desolation, destruction and death. What fascinates you about this apocalyptic and warlike imagery typical of certain stenchcore? What do you want to convey by using these images and atmospheres?

The shadows of our kings still perpetuate today. The hordes of orcs come to reality when we take a look at our everyday lives and see the efforts made by the greedy in order to destroy what we fought to create. We try to capture this exact feeling in our sound and imagery not to escape reality but to give us hope and strength to fight on with our ideals, as what we scream about is real and affects us all directly. All escapists seem to want to flee from our daily reality, but we do not, we seek to make people understand that this horrors that can only be described in fantasy are real, affects real people and are real stories. In the afftermath of all the battles fought in this world, all the mothers kept screaming in wrath, and we can ear this screaming in the winds everyday of our lives, and for that we must do whatever we can to fight back the imperialist notion that their war is bringing peace.

In your lyrics you deal with topical issues such as the oppression and control of the state in our lives or the destruction of the ecosystem in the name of profit, showing how punk in all its forms is not only a musical genre but a means to take clear political positions. So what does playing punk mean to you? Do you still see in punk a possibility of attack and threat to this system of exploitation, devastation and oppression?

Punk was, is and always will be a threat to every greedy organisation set to exploit and dominate us. It is a symbol of resistance be it in gigs, squats or the streets and that is why we put all our efforts in this cause, not only musically but also politically. Punk is more than grabbing a guitar and screaming to a microphone, it’s mutual aid and fighting back that gives it meaning and that’s why it will always be a threat.

We try to help as much as we can everyone around us and to be present in the street and in the squats, we try to learn with everyone we meet along the way and everywere we play, for us punk started with simple symbology and ended up in a life long fight against the un-human system.

In this period I managed to interview two more interesting Portuguese bands, Nagasaki Sunrise and Carnage, bands that showed me that there is a quite fertile and active hardcore punk scene in Portugal. What can you tell us about the scene in your country? Are there collectives and squats resisting repression, organizing concerts and benefits and working to keep the scene alive?

Besides the bands that already exist there are new bands being formed such as , Dishuman, Diskrasüki, Päria and Nukke. There are a lot of squats and organizations in Lisbon such as A-da-Machada where we played a gig last month and Disgraça. Recently our bassist Crostas was arrested with another 13 people during an eviction of Ladra squat in the center of Lisbon where they fought the police and after that he and some of them created a band called Polluted Existence.

What is the political situation in Portugal? As bands and individuals are you active in particular paths of struggle, from anti-fascism to solidarity with comrades affected by state repression?

We are all part of any struggle that helps anyone fight against capitalist exploitation and fascism. With the rise of far right parties in Portugal in recent years we feel the need to clean our streets in any way we can and will continue to do so as long as it’s necessary. In our gigs we always incite people to do what they can to stop this from happening, we try to create a safe enviroment for us all. And everytime we see a nazi we punch him.

Are you already working on a new record? Do you have plans for concerts and tours in the near future or is the pandemic situation still preventing you from thinking about all this?

We’ve been working on a new record during this summer with a dear friend of ours and we hope to release it sometime in the next few months. We’ve also been playing some gigs and with the lockdown situation becoming more light here we have much more to come hopefully enough to make a tour, who knows.

We have unfortunately come to the conclusion of this interview, so all that’s left is for me to leave this space for you to say whatever you want or think might be important to those who will read! I send you a big hug my dear friends!

We ask everyone to take a stand and to directly help in what we can, we sugest Kopi and squats around the world, or the current situation in northern syria were kurds are being directly affected by turskish fascism. We encourage all to take a stand against fascism, racism , imperialism and any other kind of right wing power seekers. Also to spray the notion that everyone is capable of doing something against this sytematic horror, that we should not be afraid to fight, be it with a pen, a guitar or a sword, tho sing is to fight if the accuracy is enough, of course!

Also we want to thank you a lot, personally and in the name of our band!

“Too Punk for Metal, Too Metal for Punk” – Interview with Collapsed

Over the decades the Canadian hardcore/crust punk scene has given us great bands like Iskra, Storm of Sedition, Massgrave and many others, proving to be an extremely fertile ground for certain sounds and a certain approach to punk. Quite recently from the desolate and cold lands of Quebec have emerged Collapsed, authors of a destructive mix of crust punk and death metal as we have not heard in a long time. Since finally a real DIY conspiracy (including Phobia Records and other labels) has released the self titled debut album of the Canadians on vinyl, I thought it would be a good idea to do an interview with Collapsed in which we talk not only about music, but also about the punk scene as “support not competition”, solidarity and complicity with the decolonial struggles of the Canadian First Nations and the importance of taking a clear position against the fascist scum present within the extreme metal scene (mainly in black metal) in Quebec as elsewhere. All this and much more in the words of Santiago, Michel, Kev, Paskk and Yan. TOO PUNK FOR METAL, TOO METAL FOR PUNK. SLAVES TO NO ONE!

Hi Collapsed! First of all, thank you for agreeing to answer these questions! You are a fairly recent band, so for those who don’t know you yet, it’s time to ask you some banal biographical questions: when, how and why were Collapsed born? Where did you get your name from?

Hey hi! Well, everything started in 2018 when I (Yan) got flooded and had to move back to Montreal. We (Santiago and Yan) were already talking about reforming a band, our other project Hang them All broke up around 2013. We did a jam session at my place to build some songs and Santiago mentioned some guy (Paskk), from Belgium who used to play in Segregated back in Liege, was looking for a band in Montreal. He can play guitar and do backing vocals, he also has a roommate (JP) who plays bass. So, we met and rehearsed the song “Man/wars” and it sounded good. Then, we kept rehearsing on a regular basis. We needed a singer… tried a couple people while doing a cover of Anti-Cimex; but it wasn’t it. We asked Konfront singer (Mike), but unfortunately, he didn’t have the time. Luckily, we kept asking more and more (we knew Michel was the right guy for the job) and he finally accepted. The lineup was now completed…for a while. We managed to write a couple songs and played a few good shows (scene is pretty cool in Montreal). Meanwhile, we totally self recorded, mixed and mastered our first album during winter 2019-2020 and released the LP on Phobia records (Czech Republic) in partnership with Up the punx (Poland), Deviance (France) and Hecatombe (Spain). Bullwhip Records (Malaysia) also did a tape release! Stiv from Vision of War did the artwork for that album. Later that year, JP had to leave the band going back full time at school. Matt tcheval Deadly Pale filled in for a couple of shows to help us while we were looking for a new permanent bassist. We then asked Kev, also from Konfront to play bass and he learned the songs and joined the band quite rapidly. We got on a couple compilations, played a bunch of shows and recorded at Nomansland studio (Thanks Chany Inepsy & Dizz) an EP in two days for the Pils session in June 2021. It’s getting released on tapes right now. We are almost ready to record our next album! Ho yeah and we sucked so bad finding a name…. Nenuphar and other crappy ideas like that made us reach for help… My (Yan) girlfriend found the name.

Reading on your facebook page and bandcamp, you define yourselves as a band that plays crust metal influenced as much by 90’s crust punk as by swedish death metal. How did you come up with the idea of combining these two souls in your sound? What do you think are the links that have always united the crust punk scene with the extreme metal scene?

We didn’t really think about it… Paskk and Yan usually write all the music and our sound came out like that. We knew we all liked loud angry crust punk in the vein of Skitsystem’s Stigmata (we are all fans of Swedish crust).

Paskk brought the old school death metal influences. We forged out our sound around what we like to hear! Pretty simple no? We’ve all been in the scene since the end of the 90’(Paskk is younger though) and we’ve all been in different bands in the same scene since then.

What were your first approaches to music and the hardcore/crust scene in your life? And what are the bands primarily that have influenced your music and approach?

Santiago: As for a good majority of non-conformist teenagers, the punk rock scene was not satisfying enough at the level of hate and aggressivity. The grind crust universe was more suited to me (late 90’) when I first entered the music scene. My biggest musical influences were at the time Extreme Noise Terror, Human Greed and Driller Killer.

Michel: My first approach to the punk/hardcore scene started listening to bands like Conflict, Crass, DK, Flux of pink Indians, ENT, Disorder, Subhumans and Chaos UK. Those bands really got me as a teenager and brought me to love music, and especially to this way of life. Around the age of 15 I began to play music with friends, we were in the early 90’ in Montreal, Canada, The best time for the Punk hardcore crust scene here in my opinion. Maybe I’m just nostalgic hahaha. So many good bands and crazy shows. Civil disobedience, State of fear, His hero his gone, Global holocaust, Dropdead, Human greed and so many more. All those good bands threw me further in the crust sound like Disrupt, Wolfbrigade, Tragedy, Fall of Efrafa, Consume, Disaffect, to name a few. I’m still enjoying and discovering so many good bands and I still need to sing and scream to empty the rage of all injustices.

Kev: When I was 10 years old, I’ve started listening to Swedish death metal bands like Dismember, Entombed, Grave, etc… my first tape was Entombed Clandestine. Around 16, I’ve started to listen to punk bands and I’ve fallen in love with all this way of life. Around 20, I’ve discovered bands like Wolfpack, Skitsystem, Aus rotten, etc… And boom!!! The mix of the two styles made my head burst!!!!! Now at 40, I play death crust in my best band project in my all life!!!

Paskk: I’ve been a punk rock fan at first glance, when I was about 13 years old. When I was 17 years old, I started to discover more underground punk bands; mainly uk82, anarcho punk and street punk stuffs. When I was 19 years old, I saw a Born/Dead show and not long after, a Sangre show and it was a revelation to me. The energy that crust punk music was unleashing made me enlightened. When I was 20 years old, I pursued my discovering of the genre and started to listen to bands as Wolfbrigade, Skitsystem and Tragedy, to name a few. It wasn’t long for me to focus mainly on crust music (the Swedish style always has been my favorite) and let the street punk genre and look back behind. I started playing in a crust band around the same time back in Belgium. Before moving to Canada, I experienced playing in bands in that music style with 3 bands. Two as a guitarist singer, and one as a singer. Around 23-24 years old, I started to appreciate metal music again, because in my streetpunk phase, I kind of let it denied for a while. I was loving metal again and more especially old school Swedish death metal. Bands like Entombed, Interment, Demonical Unleashed, Bloodbath, Entrails, Asphyx or the later LIK rapidly became an inspiration and a passion to me. I started looking for bands that were merging the kind of death metal I love and the kind of crust punk I love. I already knew the mighty album “Stigmata” of Skitsystem which was a perfect example of how Swedish crust and old school Swedish death metal could become the perfect cocktail. This album is still in my top 3. I discovered bands such as Totält Jävla Mörker, Guided Cradle, Misantropic or Fredag den 13 e, again to name a few. When I arrived in Canada, I was willing to make a new band of that style of music, which I call either crust metal, or death crust. And it’s what we did. I incorporated elements of death metal in my crust riffs, Yan did too, and Collapsed was born. Get ready for next album!

Yan: My approach to music might be different than my band mates. I don’t like to consider genre, I listen to pretty much all kind of music. I’ve been introduced very young to 60’-70’ music, learned guitar pretty young in the early 90’and never stopped. I’ve been in some school band and liked the feeling of being on a stage. Some friends played in a Ska-punk band Downshift in Case in the late 90’ and I joined them for a good while, we played shows all around Quebec. We were underage playing in bars but it was fun! That band went on hiatus after a few albums and several years. Through common friends, I replaced the guitarist in a local legendary crust band Global Holocaust in early 2000 and got introduced to crust punk. I already liked extreme metal and grindcore complexity and speed but that mix of punk rock and metal sounded right in my ears! Played with them for some time then started various bands projects. I’m still very into experimental music of any genre. I’m all about Emerson Lake & Palmer, Dillinger Escape Plan, Bad Brains ,Assuck, Django Reinhardt, Dystopia, Spazz, Wolfpack, Elvis, Flat & Scruggs, Deicide, Choking Victims, State of Fear, Ravi Shankar, The Beatles, Louis Armstrong, Monster X ,Hendrix, The Mahavishnu Orchestra, Fuck the facts… the list goes on and gets more and more on the weird side, I got to be careful when I write music for Collapsed not put too much weird things but the guys are watching me.

Canada has been famous for years for giving birth to many interesting and valid bands in combining crust punk and extreme metal, from the seminal Iskra (fundamental for the development of RABM) to Ahna, from Napalm Raid to Massgrave. How do you explain this extreme fertility of certain sounds in your country? What are your relationships with the punk-hardcore scene in Quebec and Canada in general?

Well, there’s a bunch of extremely talented bands coming out of the north, let’s say it’s so cold you can freeze to death ½ – 1/3 of the year…people are stuck inside and music is an excellent way to get together and do something artistic and fun! The country here is really really wide so there’s a scene but it’s spread. Let’s say from Montreal to the next big city is 300+ km and it’s like that (or worse) all across the country. However, There’s a really nice scene in Montreal. Usually shows of all kinds pretty much everyday, lots of festivals… Underground music scene is active all across Canada but mainly gathered in every big town. I think we have good relationships with other bands and venues but we’re pretty much a bastard kind of weirdos cousins… Too metal for punk rock shows and too punk for metal shows… but it works out! We’re not too much politicized, but more about raising awareness… Not here to preach, we don’t have to justify our ideologies, we say what we think, like it or not.

Quebec is unfortunately famous for having an important Black metal scene whose protagonists are often linked to environments of extreme right or with strong nationalistic-racist feelings. What are your positions about this scene and bands that use extreme metal to convey messages and positions openly fascist, reactionary, racist and oppressive towards minorities?

FASCISTS ARE NOT WELCOME!!!

We’re greatly against all kinds of discriminations. The Antifa movement is really strong here in Montreal and Fascist acts in the punk/metal scene are really watched. Some bands try to book right wing shows from time to time I’ve heard, but most get cancelled or stopped. They are now a minority. Going out in more rural regions people can be more redneck… Our position towards bands openly fascist, racist, homophobic, sexist, transphobic or oppressive toward minorities ? FUCK those persons, they don’t want to meet us in person.

With your music do you also want to convey your political ideas or do you focus on other themes and topics?

Collapsed isn’t much about politics, more about critical consciousness. We talk about premature death of ecosystems due to overconsumption, war, pain, mankind stupidity, relation interactions. Ideologies will bring conflict and there’s enough of those, we are more about exposing problems that are bringing us all down the drain. Not to be pessimist, but the future does not augur well for planet earth if we keep running that kind of system…

Recently, in the last few months, horrifying news arrived from Canada about the discovery of mass graves of First Nations children. A news that certainly does not surprise in a continent born from colonial oppression and genocide of native peoples, but that returns to emphasize the importance of the struggle and the movement of decolonization. The reaction of the First Nations was in some cases violent with the destruction of churches and other symbols of European colonialism on Canadian soil. What are your positions on these anti-colonial protests and revolts as a response to the horrors of yesterday and today of (neo)colonialism and oppression suffered by First Nations? Do you also deal with certain issues in a track like “Lost Tribes?

One of the biggest Holocaust that ever happened in America. In 1924, Paul Rivet estimated that between 40 to 50 million of people lived in the hemisphere before the Indigenous Holocaust began. With some historians arguing for an estimated 100 million, or more. That population got eradicated, their lands got stolen, children killed, women raped…first nations have the right to be angry and we support them. We’re opposed to repression against the first nations and Inuit people. Who doesn’t like a nice church fire? We’re against religion anyway, people can think what they want but not impose their ways of thinking to others.

What does being part of the DIY hardcore scene and playing crust punk mean to you? What do you think about a quite famous slogan within the hardcore scene that says “make hardcore a threat again”?

Slaves to no one.

Isn’t it making punk a threat again? Bunch of good bands on Profane existence! We did our first show with Appalachian Terror Unit!

The Goal of punks was, at the beginning, to shock and provoke, and we are part of that generation of punks. -HATE US.

Unfortunately, there’s division in the scene, people get sometimes offended for nothing and stuff. We like it wild, like back in the days.

Punk is support not competition.

Your first album was recently pressed by Phobia Records and others labels. What is your relationship with this important labels? How did the decision to release your first s/t album come about through a true DIY conspiracy between multiple labels?

We started and will always stay fully DIY, it’s a way of life, we don’t want to depend on anybody. We’re able to record and produce our music ourselves and all our merch is made locally by punks. We had the help from Stiv of Visions of War for the artwork and meanwhile Paskk talked to Mirek from Phobia record to release and distribute our first Lp. We did it in partnership with other labels, it surely does help for a larger distribution! Phobia is planning another pressing of the s/t, since the first one sold out pretty fast. We’re about to go recording a new full-length album in a few months and we plan to release it on Phobia too. So you might get new Collapsed material during winter 2022! (Hint Hint we’re starting preprod really soon!) We would really like to tour Europe and meet everybody from those awesome labels in person during summer 2023, we already had plans for last summer but Covid fucked that up solid… We still managed to do a couple shows around our home town. And it seems like everything is going better now! We just recorded the first of a long list of Pils sessions at NoMansLand studio, an initiative of Chany<Inepsy> and Dizz. They have started those sessions to help to promote the DIY underground bands. They’re releasing some small batches of tapes for every band and eventually gonna release a compilation. Ours got mastered at Enormous Door Mastering (Huge thanks to Jack Control<Severed Head of State, World Burns to Death>). Also, we recently covered the song Godforsaken for a cool State of Fear tribute album with a bunch of nice crust bands from all around the globe. It’s getting released by D.I.Y. Koło Records in Poland. The S/t album also got released on tape by a local label called <Still not fast enough>. Our friend Arnaud did some limited edition tapes and patches. Bullwhip Records in Malaysia also released some tapes of the s/t to have some distribution in south east Asia.

Are you already working on the new record? If yes, do you already have in mind when you will release it and through which label you want to press it on vinyl?

Well, we have answered that in the previous question. When our rehearsal space was closed during the early pandemic, we managed to rent a secret warehouse bunker to continue rehearsing during the lockdown (avoiding the spread of the virus by safety measures though), we kept composing more and more, and now pretty much everything is ready for our second album. We might have a split coming too…

You recently participated in a tribute to the immortal State of Fear along with other great bands, from the Swedes Misantropic to the Italians Cancer of Spreading. How did the idea of participating and collaborating in this compilation come about?

Yeah!!! State of fear is a major influence for us! It’s an honor to be part of the tribute compilation and the line up is insane. Paskk saw that tribute and contacted the label to bring us in. We had to choose, learn and record the song in the same week to send it to the label which needed it very fast to send it to the pressing plant! There’s some delays with the pressing plant but I heard it’s on the way. We’ll get it in a couple months. You can already listen to our cover on our bandcamp. (Collapsed – Pils Session)

We have come to the end of the interview, I leave this space for you to write anything you want and that you consider interesting for those who will read! Thank you again and I send you a big hug Collapsed friends!

TOO PUNK FOR METAL

TOO METAL FOR PUNK

SLAVES TO NO ONE

FUCK YOU ALL

CHEERS

“A Sign of Times to Come” – Interview with Civicide

Any self-respecting good punk has surely had some kind of infatuation with the Finnish hardcore punk scene of the 80’s and historic bands like Kaaos, Riistetyt and Terveet Kädet throughout his life. That seminal hardcore scene today is also kept alive by bands like Civicide, the protagonists of this interview. A band that manages to revitalize that primordial soup typical of the British scene of the 80s in which echoes of thrash metal and anarcho-hardcore punk coexisted and mixed, giving rise to crust punk. Keeping faith with an apocalyptic imagery, perhaps a bit abused in the crust punk scene but perfectly in line with the dark times we are living because of the hunger for profit of capitalism that is destroying the ecosystem and condemning our lives to extinction, Simon, Stefan and Kakekaaos reaffirm that punk can and must still be a means to take a clear position and attack all this. Because using Kakekaaos’ own words: “punk and politics are one thing, one cannot exist without the other”. I leave you with the words and answers of Civicide in an interview full of reflections on punk, on the current political situation (both in Finland and in the rest of the world) and on the apocalyptic visions caused by the environmental devastation and plundering produced by capitalism. A sign of times to come…

Hi guys! Let’s start the interview right away with some biographical notes about you guys. When did you decide to form Civicide and what was the idea with which you decided to start the band? Where did you get your name from?

Simon: Hi! The idea to form Civicide was in my mind for many years. Maybe since the beginning of 2010th I wanted to play some stenchcore metal punk etc. Mostly it was only drunk discussions with everyone and there were never enough actions by me. In 2016 I started to look for people and try to play something. All this confusing situation was until the moment when I heard how Kake plays a guitar and it was obvious for me that I found a second guitar and my goal was close. Soon we were drinking together and found a bass guitar and in the beginning of 2017 after finding a drummer we started. After some time we were playing our first show in August with Fatum, Tanator and Hergian. Idea of the name belongs to Stefan.

Stefan: Yeah what Simon said. A very stereotypical origin story. I can’t remember exactly how I came across the name, but it was something that I thought fit the kind of music that we wanted to make and it sounds cool. Pretty easy to remember too.

Kakekaaos: It went somehow that way, details are fuzzy, I trust Simon’s memory better with this one.

On your facebook page you define yourselves as “multinational heavy crust chaos”. What does this “label” mean?

Stefan: It was jokingly put there when we didn’t really know how to describe ourselves yet. It’s a reference to our different ethnic backgrounds (i.e Russian, Mexican, Finnish-swedish and Finnish). I suppose it also works as an ironic reference to multinational corporations and global capitalism. Never bothered to change it.

Kakekaaos: The multinational part comes from our ethnic backgrounds yeah, the rest is probably the first thing someone typed in a hurry.

When I first listened to “A Sign of Times to Come” I was immediately fascinated and enraptured by your sound which reminded me of that primordial soup known as stenchcore, in which thrash metal echoes and hardcore punk impulses are mixed to perfection in the style of the primordial British scene of the 80’s. How do you define your music? Which are the bands that influence your sound?

Simon: As a Moscovite I have grown in our quite dark and heavy sounds as most of this kinda music from Russia. It pretty much affected my influence on our riffs. I was always inspired by the British scene of the 80’s as you guess and I’m a huge fan of Japanese crust. All this multiplied with other guys’ style and a bit of finnish harcore. As a result we have a cocktail of pain, speed and mayhem you call Civicide.

Stefan: I don’t think we had that much of an idea of how we’d define ourselves and just did things we like to make this primordial soup. I think there was a vague idea of “something like Sacrilege” at the beginning. I’d say punk is the main influence, but then there’s a bit of thrash and a bit of black metal and stuff.

Kakekaaos: Influences come from a lot of shit but the main ones are definitely for me ; Finnish 80’s hardcore, metal and rock n roll like Motörhead, Deep Purple and Venom, 80’s trash like Sepultura and Kreator and of course Crass and Amebix.

You’re from Helsinki, Finland, and any self-respecting punx knows that the Finnish lands have been fertile territory for a long line of great bands, from Kaaos to Riistetyt. Do you think there is a link between you and the long hardcore tradition of your country? What influenced you about the historical Finnish hardcore scene?

Stefan: Of course we’ve been influenced by older generations of Finnish punk bands. You could say that the scene we’ve grown from is a continuation of the same scene from which bands like Kaaos and Riistetyt came from. The D.I.Y. ethos, anger and drinking is all there! Personally I like the very straight forward attitude of Finnish punk.

Kakekaaos: Like Stefu said, the scene is kind of a continuation and as a result, the music and attitude influence us. What I love most about Finnish punk is the combination of how angry and raw it is (specially 80’s hardcore. )and the D.I.Y attitude it has. Wanna play hardcore but don’t how to? who cares let’s just get drunk and try it out, that kind of attitude is probably why there were so many good bands with new ones arriving all the time.

What does it mean to you to play this genre? Is it just music or do you see punk (and all its nuances) only as a way to express your political ideas with which to denounce or attack what you don’t like about this world and system?

Stefan: It’s kind of a difficult thing to say what playing this specific genre means to me. I think it’s a very good way to express the kind of anger and existential dread one feels when looking at the world and a humanity that is racing toward ecological disaster. So in a way it’s not just music. It’s a reflection on the world around us.

Simon: I just play music I like and it means for me to take a guitar and get all the shit I can get out of it

Kakekaaos: Yeah sometimes its a reflection about our failed civilisation,the world and its inevitable and untimely fate and sometimes you just want some fast noise with good lyrics to play to. To me when it comes to punk and politics, you can’t have one without the other, even the basic idea of do it yourself is anti-capitalist at its core..

The atmospheres of your music, perfectly evoked also by a cover artwork very fascinating in its old school style, are very apocalyptic, desolate and dark, building landscapes that seem to want to tell us about a humanity condemned to self-extinction and a future that seems less and less remote because of the capitalist economic system in which we live that destroys, plunders and devastates in the name of profit and unlimited production. Do you want to talk about this too and denounce this ravenous race to self-extinction because of profit in your lyrics? Intimately related to the previous question, what do you deal with in the lyrics of your latest album?

Stefan: I think you captured the idea pretty well there already. In a way it’s very cliché, but on the other hand, it’s a reality we live in. We’re witnessing so much shit that we know is destructive for life on our planet, yet we seem to be powerless to stop it. It’s good to have an outlet for the anger and anxiety and hopelessness that it causes. Then maybe we can focus on working for meaningful change and building something positive in this sea of shit. I don’t think there’s much hope and positivity in our songs for that reason too. A lot of the stuff we deal with in the lyrics is related to this; over-exploitation of natural resources, environmental destruction, power, conflict, despair, anger. I once figured it could be defined as “millenarian visions of ecological destruction and despair”.

Kakekaaos: Stefu covered it pretty well. The ultimate failure of mankind to try to live in a peaceful relationship with nature and the absurd idea that infinite economic growth – even if it is what they love to call sustainable development – and vertically built power structures somehow are the main foundations that dictate how we measure life’s value and its importance.

What do you draw inspiration from on the purely graphic and imagery side? Who is the author of the beautiful cover artwork?

Simon: All artworks in the band done by me. You already described the visual part of it well enough in a previous question and how it belongs to music. But it’s also a parody of the classic and famous painting ‘Hyökkäys’ by Edvard Isto. Instead of a Russian double-headed eagle we have the skeleton of a three-headed dragon ‘Zmei Gorynich’ which symbolizes an old world order and dead empire which still has the sharp claws and fangs. It lives in its own ruins and protects all the conservative distractions builded by the old generation and wants to keep it and doesn’t want to change. And woman by fetters and chains fights against all these shit foundations and tries to do something new and better. Yes, there are pretty much political and social points in the drawing and everybody can interpret it as they wish. That’s the point of all of us, we see everything with our own eyes. Anyways we’re building a new world between old ruins and this process has never been different and never will.

Getting back to talking about the Finnish hardcore and punk scene, what can you tell us about it? Are there any collectives, squats (for example Kumma), bands active in the scene and keeping it alive? Which are the bands and the realities with which you have more and better relationships in Helsinki?

Stefan: Lots of active bands in Helsinki, although the pandemic has put a stop on shows for a long time now. It’s getting better now again though with restrictions being lifted, but we’re living in a precarious situation. I can’t really name any specific bands keeping the scene alive. Everyone’s doing their part. There hasn’t been any active punk squats in Helsinki since Squat Kumma was shut down, to my knowledge at least. But again, the pandemic has put everything on hold so who knows what happens in the future.

Kakekaaos: There’s a lot of active bands yeah, and like aforementioned everyone does what they can. There’s a couple of new squats but who knows for how long, the city usually shuts them down quite fast ( 15 minutes being the record!.) We’ll see in the future after this situation gets unfucked.

What is the political situation in Finland currently like? What are the biggest difficulties that politically active punx and collectives in the hardcore scene may face?

Stefan: I don’t know if there are any difficulties that punks specifically would face. Maybe the lack of autonomous spaces that punks can organize themselves, whether it’s for political action or gigs. Squatting is difficult in Finland and there aren’t that many spaces that work as squats available either, although I’m no expert on this. The rise of far-right authoritarians is a problem in Finland in general, as it has been elsewhere. It could pose a threat to politically active punks and radical leftist politics in general.

Kakekaaos: One of the main difficulties ,for anyone not just us, is the rise of the new, polished and presentable far-right, here and all around Europe. Normalizing xenophobia and racist behaviour ,and claiming its about freedom speech or that everything its a conspiracy to eliminate the ¨white man¨ its the same agenda fascist have always had, the amount of disinformation and straight out lies that can now be spread around via social medias, I think ,makes it easier for these fuckers to gain popularity among the common citizen and organise better.

In 2019 you toured Russia and Estonia, also playing with a band of dear friends like the Italians Overcharge. What are your memories of those dates? What can you tell us about the reception of Estonian and Russian punks? Which were the bands you played with that impressed you the most?

Stefan: Well the first gig was in Novgorod and it got shut down by cops right as we were supposed to play, so that was a great start haha! Then on our way from St. Petersburg to Moscow our van broke down. Luckily we had an amazing friend with us from St. Petersburg who managed to get our van to a mechanic and got us train tickets to Moscow since we were supposed to play that night. Our driver stayed behind with our friend and he drove the van to Moscow the next day when it was fixed. Luckily it was an all-night show because our playtime had to be moved from 2 am to 4 am since the train ride took so long. It was one of the best gigs we’ve ever played at. The places we played everywhere on the tour were great and the people were super nice! The traffic is an absolute terrifying nightmare in Russia though.

Simon: Yeah, traffic is a bit annoying, but basic shit for the megapolices. Maybe the biggest mistake in Novgorod was to organize a gig in the house which belongs to the Ministry of Sport. They didn’t like a bunch of wasted punks in their yard and house and called the Director of house. I hope one day we come to Novgorod again and get revenge!

Kakekaaos: yeah that tour was a nightmare I love to remember. Would do it again anytime.

Plans for the future of Civicide? Are you already planning a new tour? Are you already working on a new album?

Stefan: We’ve had to find a new drummer since Niko, our original drummer, couldn’t continue. He’s still a very dear friend to us and we’ll be seeing him around! Anyway, we’re concentrating on practicing a set with our new drummer so we can play shows again. Then we’ll continue making new songs and make a new record again some time. We’ll see if we could do a tour next year at some point too, but it’s a bit too early to say anything about that at the moment.

Kakekaaos: Practicing a set to start playing gigs soon again is the priority, a new album at some point too. Would love to tour Europe at some point also!

As we come to the conclusion of the interview, I leave this space completely up to you. You can write anything that comes to mind, tell anecdotes or even answer questions that no one has ever asked you!

Kakekaaos: I hope we can play in Italy some day! Thanks and Cheers!

“Charged Pacific Rim Crust Punk of War!” – Interview with Nagasaki Sunrise

Charged Pacific Rim Crust Punk of War“, this is the label by which Nagasaki Sunrise present and describe their music. To know more about what they mean by this concept, you just have to read the interview I recently managed to do with them. Also, if you like British heavy metal and the sounds of Japanese hardcore/crust punk from Death Side and the “burning spirits” scene, Nagasaki Sunrise and their new album “Distalgia” are the best band you could come across!

Like any self-respecting interview, we start with some biographical notes. Tell us about yourselves, when was Nagasaki Sunrise born, how did you choose the name and above all why did you decide to start this band?

Hey! First of all, thank you for the interview and your interest in talking to us! Nagasaki Sunrise was born in 2020, during the difficult months of quarantine and self-isolation. The project idea came from Iron Fist, who had some songs up his sleeve from a home recording session in 2015.

In late 2019 the project was coming to life, quickly becoming a full on band. Speedfaias joined for bass duty and Wartank was pounding the drums of deliverance. Gasolizna joined shortly after, recording vocals for the demo songs on “Turn on the power”.

Our main influence is drawn from the“Burning Spirits” aesthetic, borrowing our inspiration from the larger than life Japanese Hardcore bands from the 80’s that play a major role in our sound, imagery and vocabulary. NAGASAKI SUNRISE represents the paradoxical nature of the human race and its primal urge to wage war, focusing on WWII and particularly on the events leading to the atomic bombings of Japan.

If I’m not too misinformed about you, it seems to me that you mostly come from the heavy metal scene in which you are very active with various bands. What do you think are the main differences between the metal scene and the hardcore punk scene?

We actually have a foot in each scene, being active in both “worlds”, since we consider it being the same. We all started playing punk as teenagers, each one in his hometown. At the moment all members of the band are also involved in other bands (metal and punk oriented), such as Midnight Priest, Vürmo, Roädscüm, Carnage, amongst others.  We all like metal and punk, as well as their subgenres. But regarding the differences, here in Portugal, they’re only noticeable in the big cities, where we kinda of have a venue for punk, and a venue for metal. But both “tribes”, ourselves included of course, attend gigs in both places, as for us, the D.I.Y. spirit and support between bands and communities is crucial to keep the underground scene alive!

Listening to “Turn on the Power”, your first EP, your heavy metal background is immediately clear as well as a sincere passion and influence of certain Japanese d-beat/hardcore à la Death Side. And which are the bands that you think have influenced you the most?

The heavy metal background is surely there, mainly on the guitar leads and sound. The influencing bands question is always a tricky one, since there’s a huge amount of bands that influence us in a way or another. It makes it difficult to leave some bands out, but if i need to choose, i would say Death Side, Discharge, Motörhead, Inepsy, G.I.S.M. and R.U.G., Anti-Cimex, Venom, and so on. Mainly the Burning Spirits/Japanese Raw Punk, the British D-Beat/Rock’n’roll/N.W.O.B.H.M, and the Scandinavian Hardcore sounds.

“Charged pacific rim crust punk of war” is the label you use to define yourselves, your music and your imagery. Would you like to elaborate on this concept?

This term was chosen due to the lyrics, the sound, and the aesthetics of the band.  Since we weren’t able to label the band with a specific sound or genre definition. 

We like the diversity of elements that materializes our vision of punk and metal, which has more of a crossover feeling to it. It can be epic and gnarly, it has solos with d-beat, it’s meant to be chaotic while still displaying a melodic touch, but it is most of all a tribute to the “fallen heroes” of WWII and beyond.

Soon (11 September) your first full-length entitled “Distalgia” will be released, would you like to tell us something about it? What will be the differences with the previous Ep? What is the meaning of the title?

Yes, the album came out on September 11, and it’s already available on all streaming platforms. It will be out on CD in the end of September, and on vinyl in the end of October, released by Monolith Records.   

We are really happy with the end result, and stoked to play live! The recording process was smooth, working with our good friend Kiko “Gloves of Metal” Silva, who also mixed the album. 

It was mastered by Jack Control at the Enormous Door Mastering, and we couldn’t ask for a better outcome. Raw and damp, made to be listened loud as fuck! 

We think that there’s an evolution in the sound from the “Turn on the Power” demo. Not different sounding, but trimmed and polished to its best. We had more time to work on the songs, the lyrics, and the production, paying more attention to the details, and working on them till we were happy. In the end, that sets the difference between a demo and a full length album. 

The name of the album comes from the third track, it is an homage to all the bands that shaped the punk sound, inspiring others to keep on doing it. It’s a junction between the Dis-sound and Nostalgia.

Lyrically, “Turn on the Power” focused on the Pacific Rim battles of the second world war. Where does the idea of talking about certain historical themes come from within your proposal? Will the new album still be inspired by the events that affected the Pacific Rim during the second world war or did you deal with other issues?

Actually, when we came out with the “Charged Pacific Rim Crust Punk of War” thing, we had more in our minds the lyrics of the album than the ones of the Demo. The sound is there, sure. But we wrote it in the process of writing the album, so it was a lot more connected with the last one.  The lyrics of the demo are more related to being loud and playing raw. It also has war themed lyrics, like Napalm in the Morning, but the Pacific Rim war tales are a lot more present in the album. We see the Turn on the Power lyrics as an overture for what we want to do in the future. 

As for the idea of talking about certain historical themes, I can tell you that we are huge BOLT THROWER  fans, and that should be enough! Ahah. We want to talk about War, and the atrocities that transpired during the Pacific Rim battles and other wars, but in a more historical perspective. We’re not doing or writing about anything new, but we want to do it in a different way.

You come from Portugal, a land unfortunately that appears too little often on the maps of world metal and punk. What can you tell us about the Portuguese hardcore/crust and metal scene? Which are the bands with which you have more relationships and that you consider more valid?

Yes, unfortunately that’s true. I think that being a small country and geographically in the end of Europe doesn’t help. It’s really difficult to play outside of Portugal and for bands to come here to play, since we don’t have physical borders with no country apart from spain. Fortunately, this is changing a bit, and we’re starting to have more touring bands coming, and more bands going out (at least before the pandemic). It’s a small scene, but cohesive, at least in the D.I.Y. metalpunk underground scene. And there’s a lot of awesome bands in Portugal as well! To name a few, DOKUGA, BAS ROTTEN, ALCOHOLOCAUST, VAI-TE FODER, BATTLESCARS, DESKARGA ETILIKA, CREPUSCULO MALDITO, PARIA, SCATTERBRAINIAC, KAZÄN, SANGUE XUNGA, SYSTEMIK VIOLENCE, VENENO CALIFORNIA, RAVENSIRE, VECTIS, ESTADO DE SITIO, IRONSWORD, LYZZARD, WANDERER, FILII NIGRANTIUM INFERNALIUM, ARCHAIC TOMB, FREEDOOM, SCUM LIQUOR, BACKALLEY LOBOTOMY, NARCOMANCER, MARTELO NEGRO, CORRUPTED HUMAN BEHAVIOR.

Both on the first Ep and on the tracklist of the next “Distalgia” you can notice the choice to use the Japanese language for some titles of your songs. Is it only a choice of imagery and style or is it a way to pay homage to that “burning spirits” Japanese hardcore/crust that appears as one of your main influences?

It’s definitely an homage to those bands. They are the major influence in the NAGASAKI SUNRISE aesthetic and sound.

Dear Nagasaki Sunrise we have come to the end of this interview, I leave this space at your disposal to write whatever comes to your mind!

Thank you for reading this, and supporting the band! We hope to go out and play live everywhere we can as soon as possible! Keep the D.I.Y metalpunk scene raw, loud and underground!!

Køntraü – Un Mondo Diverso da Questo (2021)

Nella mia testa sogno un mondo diverso da questo e ne porto i segni sulla pelle.
Giorni neri nella mia testa, che si rincorrono senza fine, senza darmi tregua, lasciandomi inerme e impotente a guardare un futuro che non esiste più. E che per questo fa ancora più paura. Giorni neri con l’acqua alla gola e attorno a me dilaga impetuosa una sensazione di abbandono e sconfitta. Stringimi forte, sussurrami all’orecchio che possiamo ancora essere l’offensiva contro questa città di merda che ci soffoca, ci inghiotte e poi ci vomita senza alcuna pietà. Guarda fuori dalla finestra, sembra stia iniziando a piovere mentre, all’orizzonte, vedo il riflesso di Milano che ricomincia a bruciare nelle vetrine dei negozi di lusso. Non c’è più alcun posto per me in questa metropoli paranoica. Un mondo diverso da questo è quindi possibile?  Occupiamo queste strade con i nostri incubi di sopravvivenza. 

Milano brucia in una notte di settembre.

Punx-volpini, questa estate da qualche parte a Milano.

Nati nella saletta di T28 e da qualche anno attivi con varie apparizioni live nei vari squat e centri sociali milanesi e non solo, finalmente i Kontrau sono riusciti a dare alla luce il loro album di debutto accompagnato da un titolo che sembra una vera e propria dichiarazione di intenti da parte dei nostri: Un Mondo Diverso da Questo. Anche il nome scelto dalla band, che in esperanto significa “contro”, lascia presagire l’istinto bellicoso e l’attitudine rivoltosa dei nostri. Annoverando tra le loro fila gentaglia bellissima già attiva in altre band come Mesecina, Peep, Failure, nonchè volti noti della scena hardcore milanese, i nostri punx-volpini ci danno in pasto diciotto minuti in cui d-beat/crust punk e sonorità death metal vecchia scuola si mescolano in una ricetta convincente, brutale e che non lascia un attimo di tregua. Se musicalmente non stupisce l’intensità e la solidità della proposta dei Kontrau, tratto che si poteva notare già dai loro concerti (basti pensare a quelli di questa estate a Milano o in Scintilla a Modena), quello che maggiormente ho apprezzato durante l’ascolto delle undici tracce è senza ombra di dubbio il lato lirico. E’ infatti dai testi che emerge un continuum di tensioni e sensazioni che richiamano alla mente l’hardcore punk italiano degli anni ’80 e specialmente l’attitudine e il liricismo di band come Wretched o Declino. Testi che trasudano tutto il malessere, il senso di impotenza e di alienazione prodotti dal vivere in una metropoli come Milano e la necessità intima di rivoltarsi contro di essa e contro un mondo votato al profitto, al consumo e alla merce, allo sfruttamento di ogni forma di vita, alla distruzione del pianete e alla repressione di ogni forma di dissenso. Testi in cui emerge prepotente la tensione a trasformare l’apatia e il nichilismo in azioni per minare l’esistente capitalista, risvegliarsi dal torpore imposto dal quieto vivere e dalla pacificazione sociale, attaccare a viso aperto la repressione che minaccia le nostre vite, al fine di riuscire a costruire una vita radicalmente diversa, quel “mondo diverso da questo” evocato dal titolo dell’album.

Per quanto riguarda la musica, i Kontrau riescono perfettamente nel loro intento di condensare la loro passione per il d-beat/crust più classico di scuola svedese (l’iniziale Giorni Neri per esempio) e quella per le sonorità primordiali di certo death metal (Segni sulla Pelle, Con l’Acqua alla Gola), regalandoci così un sound che non mostra segni di cedimento e che si dimostra impetuoso, brutale e spietato nel suo incedere, incurante di ciò che si trova dinanzi così come delle macerie che si lascia alle spalle. Ultima nota che ci tengo a sottolineare è la prestazione dietro al microfono del buon Filippo, una voce abrasiva e rabbiosa perfetta per il genere e che risulta convincente e ispirata in tutte le tracce. Per concludere, i Kontrau hanno dato prova di essere devastanti sia dal vivo che in studio, quindi l’unico consiglio che mi sento di darvi è quello di correre ad ascoltare Un Mondo Diverso da Questo senza perdere tempo perchè erano anni che non veniva pubblicato (seppur al momento solo in versione digitale, purtroppo) un disco crust punk così valido, intenso e brutale all’interno della scena italiana! Bravi Kontrau, bravi punx-volpini!

E’ una notte oscura e piovosa nella metropoli, qualcuno fissa il proprio smartphone, qualcuno non riesce a dormire, qualcuno sta scappando dagli sbirri e 5 volpini corrono lungo le strade…

Rigorous Institution – Survival/Despotism (2020)

I Rigorous Institution sembrano provenire direttamente da qualche umido squat di Bristol o di Norwich della prima metà degli anni 80, quando il crust come lo conosciamo oggi non esisteva ancora ma si respiravano solamente i fumi nauseabondi del suo antenato, quel marciulento brodo primordiale conosciuto come stenchcore. Si ma sia chiaro a tuttx, il sound dei Rigorous Institution non ha niente a che vedere con quel metallic-crust che andava tanto di moda nell’underground nella prima metà degli anni duemila e nei primi anni ’10, bensì riesce a rievocare perfettamente quel calderone di influenze che sembra provenire da un’epoca in cui Discharge e Hellhammer, Amebix e Celtic Frost, avevano molte più cose in comune di quanto oggi si potrebbe pensare. A differenza dei precedenti Ep “The Coming of the Terror” o “Penitent“, con questo Survival/Despotism, i nostri punx di Portland si spostano in maniera ancora più netta verso territori e sonorità di amebixiana memoria, in cui atmosfere post-punk enfatizzate dall’utilizzo del synth e ritmi tribali che chiamano in causa la sezione ritmica dei Killing Joke, rivestono un ruolo centrale e riescono a dipingere paesaggi dai toni post-apocalittici, dominati dallo sconforto e dall’impotenza. Stando a quanto scrivono sulla loro pagina bandcamp, i Rigorous Institution definiscono il loro sound con termini come “synth crust” o con la ben più fantasiosa etichetta di “descendant angel-crust“, ma in fin dei conti poco importa come lo si voglia chiamare, perché quello in cui ci imbatteremo durante l’ascolto di questo ep non è altro che la versione più embrionale e primordiale del crust punk da cui tutto ha preso poi la forma che consociamo noi oggi. Musicalmente le due tracce che compongono questo Survival/Despotism riescono dunque a sintetizzare in maniera estremamente convincente e ispirata sonorità che spaziano dagli Amebix di Winter/Beginning of the End agli Hellhammer di Apocalyptic Raids, accompagnando questa primitiva versione del crust punk di scuola britannica con un’atmosfera fortemente oscura che ha il compito di evocare nelle nostre menti scenari apocalittici e desolati, da cui veniamo sopraffatti in preda allo smarrimento e alla disillusione. Se vi mancano quelle sonorità e quelle atmosfere che solamente i primordiali gruppi stench-crust britannici sapevano creare e trasmettere, questo Survival/Despotism è un lavoro che non dovete assolutamente farvi scappare!

 

“Make punk a way of protest again!” – Interview with War//Plague

This summer I wrote a long article about the Minneapolis hardcore punk scene that was published in the zero issue of Benzine, a punx fanzine created by some individuals from the Milan hardcore punk scene. The idea to write that article was born after the police murder of George Floyd and after the riots that crossed and burned the USA during the summer months. The publication of that article allowed me to get in touch with War//Plague, one of the most interesting crust punk bands in the Minneapolis scene and one of my favorites. I recently asked Leffer and Lutz a series of questions, covering a variety of topics ranging from revolts against racism and police violence, to the idea of punk music as a way of protest and political movement. Right now I can’t find the right words to explain you how happy and proud I am to have interviewed War//Plague, especially because we all share the idea that punk is and must still be a threat, so I’ll just leave you to their answers and wish you a good reading.

This summer, after Floyd’s brutal murder by police and in the wake of the raging riots, I wrote an article titled “Minneapolis Burns, Fragments of the Minneapolis Hardcore Scene,” starting first with the title of the Destroy EP “Burn this Racist System Down.”I wanted to ask, what can you tell us about the current hardcore punk scene in Minneapolis? What differences do you notice between today’s punk scene and that of the past in your city?

Leffer: Ever since George Floyds murder, life has been a bit unstable, yet the community is strong here in Minneapolis. Life has come to a stand still and a lot of people are in survival mode with the pandemic, etc. So punk life and energy has been redirected to the current state of affairs here. No gigs or gatherings but protests are constantly happening and that’s how many are coming together to give a sense of community and strength.

Lutz: The current state the punk scene here is a bit fragmented, but it’s still going strong. There just aren’t a lot of places to play and with the pandemic, no one is playing out. We’re all still on lock down for the most part, but hopeful things will turn around later this year. However, I think the punk scene is more charged than ever.

When was War//Plague born and where did your name come from?

Lutz: We started in the spring of 2008, still seems like yesterday. The name was kind of the amalgamation of ideas, surprisingly it’s probably a more relevant name now then it was back then!

Leffer: Like Lutz said, it was 2008, right after PROVOKED broke up. Lutz and I wanted to continue playing music so we started writing new material. Finding a name took quite a while as we wanted to really think on our approach and the basic musical theme of the band.

What is your position on the uprisings against police abuse and structural racism in U.S. society and culture that followed Floyd’s murder? How did the hardcore punk scene of your city live those days of revolt?

Lutz: The spring and summer of last year was very intense in the city. Constant protest, helicopters, military presence, etc. Not to mention all the white nationalists and knuckle draggers that came into the city to start more problems. The police in this area have been a menace for decades, many of them are extremely racist and violent. The day the precinct burnt down was very surreal… the turmoil in the air was thick. Police in riot gear on the roof, blockades, smoldering ashes and smoke from surrounding building, protests, people looting for diapers, food, etc.

The city spent millions to fortify downtown prior to the Killer Cop’s trial. After months of promising to dismantle the police and make changes, the city council invested millions to hire more police. People are pissed off and fed up. But one thing I can say, that the media doesn’t cover, is that summer really brought the community together. Not just the punk community, the southside community as a whole. The punk scene is and will always be allies. Systemic racism is real in this country and I believe this fight is far from over.

Leffer: The cops and police union here are incredibly corrupt. The history of racism within the police ranks has been running for far too long and the community has had enough. George Floyd changed the world and especially this area of Minneapolis as people are simply fed up with the constant fear. Floyds wasn’t the first murder to happen under a corrupt and racist system, but his unfortunate death has shed a large spotlight on what needs to change.

We are located quite close to where Floyd was murdered and have spent time at the intersection where he was killed as it is a memorial now. When you go to that spot, the feeling of sorrow and tragedy is overwhelming. However, it also gives a sense of urgency that something must be done and done now.

How is the current social and political situation in Minneapolis?

Leffer: The socio/politcal environment here is very strong and constantly moving. This community thrives on coming together and making sure voices are heard. Protests are frequent and well organized, which spreads far and wide with many people coming together as the urgency to be heard is felt by all.

The down side to it, is having provacateurs from the outside coming in to harm the cause or make things worse. We had random groups of white supremists and other trouble makers travel into town to start burning down parts of the city and trying to blame it on the peaceful protestors. Thankfully some of the media caught wind of this and some were caught, but the forces of evil are persistant with these types of people so the struggle continues.

Lutz: It is still very active. I expect momentum will pick up. Winter here is extremely cold and frigid. Though that has not stopped people from protesting. Not only are there protests against the racist system that has enabled these police to get away with murder, there are protests against the Line 3 pipeline going on. These oil lines break and poison the water. This also breaks treaty with the Anishinaabe peoples and will cause more climate change.

In a thought-provoking interview with DIY Conspiracy in 2019, you define punk as a Way of Protes and Political Movement. Would you care to elaborate on this approach of yours (which I totally agree with)?

Lutz: There are many different ways to protest. It can be throwing a brick through a window, but it can also be writing, music, art, etc. I think punk has always been a political platform for people that want to express themselves and go against the grain. Punk means questioning the norm, not conforming to the mainstream’s ideals and morals, etc. That in and of itself is a form of protest.

Leffer: Punk has been a political movement since its inception. It’s a form of protest and by raising your voice you want to be heard in a world that doesn’t listen. Punk is a also an educational tool. Personally, I learned more from a punk record at a young age than anything else. You learn about animal rights, free thought and working together for a better world.

What does it mean for you to play this kind of music and to be part of the punk scene?

Leffer: For me, it’s means everything. Punk and the punk community are in my blood and I wouldn’t be who I am today without it. I’ve met amazing people, played all over and travled the world all because of our passion for punk. It really is a driving force.

Lutz: Well, for me it’s a way to just let it all out. Scream and yell… get all that noise out of me. Use it as a way to put something out in the world that can inspire someone or change their point of view. Punk has been around for a long time now, some move on, sure, but that doesn’t mean give up the fight. You need to keep that rebellious spirit alive, keep dreaming and keep fighting. Otherwise, you’ve just given in to the system that oppresses so many.

Your last work “Into the Depths”, released a few years ago now, is a great work of riotous and angry crust punk. What can you tell us about that record? What themes did you try to address with that album?

Lutz: Thanks, glad you enjoy it! I guess the overarching theme of the record comes down to a few things like revolution, idealism, and internal conflicts. There’s a lot of songs that tackle the struggles with one’s self and the world’s problems constantly pushing its way into our everyday life. From war and capitalism to the mistreatment of others – treating people like they don’t matter or that they are just expendable machines. Basically, coming down to the fact that people can only take so much before everything boils over. The rich have had their time in the sun and really done nothing to contribute or help others, it’s time for everyone to get a piece of light. Yet you’ll regularly hear Conservatives and the rich talk about ‘trickledown economics’ and that the stock market shows a strong economy, blah, blah, blah… It’s all bullshit. Those are the fairy tales they tell people so they can keep making money while other starve.

Leffer: I feel that album is a reflection of our current world. We’ve written more intricate or mid-tempo songs in the past but this latest album was soley derived from the socio/political environment we’re in and it keeps getting uglier. So as long as it continues, we’ll continue the fight and to create rage and protest through our music.

Under what circumstances did the collaboration and split with Warwound come about?

Leffer: I was working closely with Ian Glasper (bass) of Warwound and through years of communication and friendship, it just sort of happened and both bands agreed on it.

Speaking for a moment of the purely musical side, which have been the bands that have influenced your sound since the beginning?

Leffer: We have diverse range of taste, but I could say a lot comes from a mix of UK crust/stench and old school Scandinavian hardcore punk. We do mix up some metal punk style riffs in our music but all in all we just write what feels good.

Lutz: So many, maybe too many to name. But I’ve been influenced by everything from Sepultura, Disfear to Killing Joke. Obviously growing up here, I was also influenced by bands like Misery and State of Fear. The Twin Cities scene over the years has had a big impact on me.

Minneapolis has a long and important history of protests and riots but also a very fertile hardcore punk scene. What do you think have been the most important bands that have kept this scene alive?

Lutz: Misery for sure, they carried that torch for decades. But I think a lot of great bands have come and gone, all of them contributed to the history of this punk community. I think we’re all antsy to get through this pandemic and hear what everyone has been up to.

Leffer: I agree with Lutz, MISERY definitely but there are so many. Minneapolis punk and those involved in the community around here usually are in it for life. It’s never usually been a trend or a fad but something more important in our lives. It also goes beyond the music, in regards to “bands”. There’s record stores, community action and venues to support others forms of politcal events, etc.

On Disastro Sonoro I have from the beginning shared Profane Existence’s famous motto “make punk a threat again”. Profane Existence is undoubtedly one of the most important historical realities of the Minneapolis hardcore punk scene, what is your relationship with this DIY project/collective/label?

Leffer: Most of the bands we’ve been involved with have been released off PE and have usually been a part of the PE collective through shows and other music related festivities.

Lutz: We’ve been involved in some form with PE for the last few decades. Provoked (our old band) put out some records on the label and the first War//Plague LP was on PE. At one point, the PE distro was in our living room at a punk house we all lived at, affectionately called the Shit Haus. We’re still friends with Dan, though he’s not really involved with PE these days, he still drives us on tour sometimes. Right before the pandemic hit, we played the PE anniversary show out in Pittsburgh at Skull Fest. Really fun time, saw a lot of old friends, met some new ones and Aus Rotten even played a few songs! It’s always cool to run into people you haven’t seen in over 20 years and they’re still involved and active in punk.

How are you experiencing the situation regarding the Covid 19 pandemic in the US? How has your life as a punk band changed at a time of such a severe health crisis?

Leffer: It’s been tough, but we’ve been able to keep somewhat sane through this process. We are constantly writing music, even if we’re not at band practice we write at home and even record guitar riffs on our computer and share them, so when we do meet up (once a week) we already have ideas of what’s next song wise. So the pandemic has actually been good for writing a lot of songs and finishing up our next LP.

The bad side of it, besides the vile and depraved system not taking care of it, is that venues and gigs are suffereing which a lot of artists rely on. It was a crushing blow for us when we had to cancel our tour with AXEGRINDER and to also play HAGL fest in Vancouver. We were really looking foward to touring again, but we’ll need postpone that until things are better. It’s always good to make sure people are safe during these times.

Lutz: Well… to put it bluntly, it sucks! But I know there are people struggling more, so you just have to roll with the punches and do your part to keep the disease at bay. There are a lot of conspiracy theorists in this country, not to mention the former orange-cheeto-wannabedictator, he really didn’t help the situation. For the most part, I think we are just trying to stay positive and active. I mean for the first like 6 months, we didn’t jam at all. We’re back to a regular schedule now, which has been great. We mask up and social distance. I think there is a sense of urgency in the new music we’ve been writing. We’re living through some historic times and I don’t think we’re out of the woods yet.

Future projects for War Plague? When will a new album be released?

Lutz: We’re working hard and have a ton of new material. So, I think a new album is definitely in the very near future.

Leffer: Yes, we’re working very hard to get this next album out. We were able to record a secret song for a future international compilation coming out later this year. Besides that, more touring and always more albums!

We have reached the end of the interview, so this space I leave completely to you, feel free to tell anecdotes or talk about anything you want! Thank you again for the time you spent answering my questions! Let’s continue to keep punk a way of protest and a movement of revolt!

Leffer: Yes, stay punk and stay active! Now is more important than ever to use what we have, and if that’s using your voice to scream, then so be it. Everything adds up and the more voices we have the louder we get. Thank you for the chance to have this interview and hope you and everyone else are staying safe in these uncertain times.

Lutz: Thank you for the interview, we really appreciate the support! I guess all I want to say is just keep up the good fight. Times are dark and they’ll probably get darker, but keep your head up, talk to your community, get involved, even if it’s just something small. Like I said, there are many different forms of protest, so do what you can. As much as it seems like the world in coming apart, remember there are tons of other people out there fighting hard to make a change. Depression during Covid is another pandemic I’m sure many are dealing with. Don’t bottle it up. Reach out and talk to people. There are a lot of assholes in the world, but there’s only one you and there’s a community out there willing to help. Cheers!

 

“Dis means war, Noise means friendship!” – Interview with Just a Nightmare Zine

Nightmare o reality? Dis means war! If you need your monthly ration of d-beat raw punk, Just a Nightmare Zine is the one for you, a real d-beat raw punk assault without mercy! This time I had a some long and in-depht chats with Alex (formerly active in Disease), the mastermind behind Just a Nightmare Zine, nothing better than a fanzine totally faithful to Do It Yourself and focused on d-beat and raw punk. In the past few months he has already published ten issues of the fanzine filled with interesting interviews with bands like Giftgasattack, Besthoven, Warvictims, Framtid and many, many more. Long live fanzines, long live Just a Nightmare Zine and let’s not forget that Noise means friendship!

Hi just a Nightmare Zine! I stumbled across your project recently and I must admit I was immediately fascinated by this zine. Can you tell us how, when and why you decided to start writing and printing a fanzine like this?

Hey, thanx for showing interest in this small D.I.Y zine.

Just A Nightmare wasn’t intentional. At one point in 2018, i decided to do a talk with a friend of mine, Per,  but in something like a more formal format like an interview. Although it was just a friendly talk. There was no intention this to be the start of something that’s called Just A Nightmare these days.
That’s why that conversation took 2 years till we are done. We would’ve done few questions, then totally forgot about it, then do few more and again forget about it. There’s a lot of different moods in that issue cause it was done slowly in 2 years time.
This will become the 1st issue of the zine that came out in June 2020 and will include the bands Per have taken part in, Giftgasattack, Warvictims, Martyrdod, Agrimonia, Kirai, Honnor SS etc..

As far as why i started, i’m not really sure, i think i’ve had on mind that every punk bands interviews are just a scratch at the surface. The same questions asked over and over again, kinda qeneric. I do love that as well, but i just wanted to dive a bit deeper and to get a glimpse of peoples lives.
Why  they do what they do, what was their life path, their struggles, the things they love and hate to do, and just their daily life.
So, it was never cause of the Corona, it was just the time to do it.

Why i decided to do it in a physical form and not digital? I’m also not sure.
Maybe as most of the things i do in life, if i can chose the easier or harder way, i’m always a fuckup and go with the harder one and put myself into more shit ha!

The name you chose immediately gave me the impression that it was meant to be a sort of homage to Disclose, but maybe I’m wrong. Can you tell us about the choice of the name of your zine?

Disclose and Kawakami are without a doubt an endless inspiration for me, no matter if it’s zine or some other project. The name came out spontanious as everything else in the beggining of this zine. I think its a nice reflective vision of the content that’s inside of it.

From what I could read and understand you define Just a Nightmare as a fanzine dedicated to d-beat/Raw punk in all its forms and incarnations. How come the choice to dedicate and focus on this specific genre of punk music? What were your first approaches with this genre?

When i was a kid the internet was not a thing back then, and in a thrid world countries it came even later then in the most of the rest of the world.
So when i was around 9 years old a heard Nirvana from a friend of mine older sister.
One day i went to a CD store with my dad and saw a Nirvana CD at the shell, i don’t know why i decided to buy it.
And thats how it started, the story with the music. After that, i kept searching for more and new ‘extreme’ music. I discovered bands like Exploited, Dead Kennedys, Disorder, Chaos Uk. As well as bands like Ramones and Clash, but i never liked them, although all the local punks were crazy bout em.
One day, one of my older punk friends called Savo gave me a Discharge tape. I can say that this was my first real encounter ever with D-beat. Then i bought the Final Blood Bath CD from a local record  strore. After that, the descovery of new dbeat badns just continued and i got more and more into it.
So i think this is the answer as well for  why the dedication of the zine for raw punk.

In the last years there seems to be a sort of fashion/revival of raw punk/d-beat around the world and often you end up getting lost among the many releases that crowd the scene. Which are your opinions about this explosion of bands dedicated to play “raw punk”? What do you think are the best recent bands playing d-beat?

D-beart raw punk was never a trend and will never be. Occasionaly there’s a wave of new bands every now and then which i think it’s great.The more bands the better no?  Time will prove which bands will last and leave a mark.
I think it’s really good when there are new bands making new noise.
I just don’t like when some make it out of joke and boredom and it’s not serious. Which can be noticed in their music most of the time. I do respect dedication and being sensire in what you do. Todays world gives opportunities for everyone to make their own part. So sometimes punk is made by people that are not punks and do not live it.
The more recent bands i like, some that comes on my mind right now are –  Physique, Zodiak, Hellish View, Kritik, Temor, Löckheed, Affect, Progress, GLÜ, Anti-Metafor, Detesto, Collapsed from Indonesia,  Burning//World, Better Reality, the one man project Forclose is great, End Result, PissSniffers,just to mention a few, i am also looking forward for a debut release of the Japanese ‘No’, and of course-the amazing Heavy fucking Nukes with Earth Crust Displacement!

You’ve already published ten issues of Just a Nightmare full of interviews with a lot of extremely good bands, how do you choose the bands to interview?

Yes, i decided to make it as a monthly zine. Since most of the zines comes out on every few months, why not to do something that will come out every 1st day of the month.
I wasn’t sure if that’s possible but time proved it is.
The goal that i made to myself as a challenge was to do 10 issues. So, that mission now is complete.
I do interviews with people/bands that i love. Everyone that i have done interview with have played in more then 1 band. So the zine covers every band that the person has been involeved with.

What aspects do you prefer to dwell on when you find yourself interviewing bands? Do you prefer to deal with more political issues or with more personal issues related to the more musical side?

I consider it all. Although the main aspect is the persons life i do the interview with . Since the kid days to very present today. So yeah, all aspects are involved, more or less, depend on that persons life. Obviously since we cover every band that the persons has been part in, music aspect in the zine is mostly covered.

What band do you dream of interviewing and publishing on Just a Nightmare? And why?

The one bend and person that i will never be able to do an interview with and i love to, is of course Kawakami and Disclose.

If you had to choose your favorite issue of the zine from those published to date, which one would you choose and why? And which interview are you most proud of?

Every issue is special cause every person that i have talked to is different. All of these people are different in their own unique way. No life story can be a bad or borring, quite opposite, they are all very interesting and challenging for me to do. That’s why i do it.
I don’t want to look at this zine in a way of achievement, cause for the people that have taken part in it is very personal. I just wanna look at it as a sensire punk work, those people have influenced me in one way or another.
I am just the one asking the questions. It’s the people that do the zine. It’s their story. I just put it on paper.
And they all have one thing in common and that’s punk. They are all true raw punk warriors!

When you decided to start writing and publishing the fanzine, were you inspired by any other punk fanzines in particular?

I was inspired to do this in a physical zine format cause that is the thing that i can most connect with. Punk has always had a connection and sharing through the zines.
But what really inspired me to do this in the very essence and the core of its meaning was the peoples life stories.

What does it mean for Just a Nightmare Zine to be part of the global hardcore punk scene? What does punk mean to you?

I would like to think that when I do something I love, I really put dedication and focus in it, and im really  glad that the small cyrcle of punks that know this zine, like it.  This zine is not a big one, it’s pretty much isolated and small.
But considering the content in it, maybe that’s just the way it should be. As the years go by, people has been changing and life gets different. Generations grow old and new younger ones come. It is the cycle. Everyone have their own opinion on what punk is for themselves. Some are here to stay, other just come and go.
Punk is sacred, it has always been and will always be. That’s the way I want to perceive it.
It’s the way I live, the things I do and why and how I do them, it’s freedom and understanding. It’s friendship, sharing, caring and unity.

What are the biggest challenges and greatest satisfactions you’re encountering in keeping alive a project that is certainly as challenging as Just a Nightmare Zine?

The possitive exciting challenge is to catch and do every issue on time ha!
I do understand that the talk we do in the interview is very personal, so i’m serious when we talk about delicate subjects or periods in these peoples lifes. The bad challenge is to cover expences the for printing it, post mail these days is fucked up even more then usual cause of Covid, but it’s not a reason to stop till i can meet end to end.

 

Point-blank question: what are your five favorite punk/hardcore records of all time? And what bands are currently out there that you think are really good?

For this talk that we have now these are the top 5 records:
Disclose-Nightmare Or Reality/A Mass of raw sound assault/Neverending war/Once the war started
Framtid-Under the ashes
Disaster-War Cry
Discharge-HNSNSN.
No Fucker-Conquer the innocent.
Decontron S/TWait!? Is that already more then 5?!
Some bands that are great and i haven’t mentioned already, D-Sagawa, Dispose & Kajsajuntti, Disable, Absolut, Svaveldioxid, Ambush, Besthoven, Contrast Attitude, Cønditiøn, Singe & Tortur, B.E.T.O.E, Avslag, Hellish Inferno, Bipolar from Greenland(the only punk band from that country that i know off), Final Slum War.

If I understand correctly, Just a Nightmare Zine is a project intimately tied to the raw punk/d-beat band Disease. Can you tell us about what the Macedonian hardcore/punk scene is like?

Yes, you got it correct, I also take part in a band called Disease, and all of the members together with the vocalist of Born for slaughter are also the ones behind the band Angza.
Marce the drummer, also plays in Arlekin, and he and the vocalist Fixa both take part in Stagnator.
Spagi takes part in Transhunter and Goli Deca.

The punk scene in Macedonia at the moment is very small. No punk bands around. But at different points in time the scene was better or worse, so I guess these last few years we are in the worse period. Or the worst ha!
There’s been some really good punk bands in the past like New Police State, Tank Warning Net, Bloody George, FxPxOx, Disclass.
Today is different, there are separations between the crews which devided the scene even more, caused by some specific people.
But it is what it is.
I keep myself focused on the things we do, trying not put too much thoughts on the bad things in the local scene.

We have come to the end of the interview, this space is completely free and you can use it to write anything you think is valid.Thank you again for taking the time to answer my questions. Long live Just a Nightmare Zine, make punk a threat again!

Thank you too Stefano for taking your time to do this.
Life is sometimes better sometimes worse, at the moment these are some fucked up times that we go through and none really know when or will this will end.
Take care for each other and stary safe.
Noise is friendship!
Stay Punk!

Disease, the d-beat raw punk band in which Alex plays!

 

 

“Are We Not a Plague On Our Own?” – Interview with Plague Thirteen

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of asking a few questions to Plague Thirteen, authors of one of the most intense, dark and devastating crust/d-beat records I’ve heard in the last year. A record that I reviewed a month ago on these pages defining it “the perfect soundtrack of the pandemic nightmare“. An interview in which, talking about climate change, pollution, war and environmental devastation, Plague Thirteen ask us two fundamental questions, perhaps rhetorical but extremely relevant: are we not a plague on our own? Are we doomed?

HOW AND WHEN DID PLAGUE THIRTEEN FORM? WHERE DID YOU GET YOUR NAME FROM?

We formed the band around 2019, myself and Geoffrey played in another band called LINK, unfortunately we split up after more than 20 years of playing due to various reasons, we had already the idea to start a new band and it was the right time to do so, Bjorn and Arthur completed the lineup, Bjorn used to be a former member of LINK a few years back, and he and Arthur were playing in a band called SORE who split up as well , we locked ourselves up in the rehearsal room and the result is PLAGUE THIRTEEN

The name PLAGUE THIRTEEN has different meanings, who are we as individuals? Who are we to judge one another? Are we humans so superior in our kinds that due to our selfishness we ignore what is happening to our lovely planet and environment? War, poverty the hate wave that’s spreading, are we not a plague on our own?

YOU RELEASED YOUR FIRST RECORD DURING THE SECOND AUTUMN LOCKDOWN, SO UNDER WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES AND EMOTIONS DID YOUR FIRST ALBUM COME ABOUT?

The recordings of the album already took place before the whole covid  situation, we first brought it out on a cd version as we went on a small tour at the end of 2019, we wanted to bring it out on vinyl and our good and long time friend Nico from Loner cult records was willing to help us out with it together with deviance records, phobia records,shove records and up the punks records.

The songs of that album are packed with emotions and struggles we all faced during a certain period. the split of the bands , the losses we encounterd , for me personal , it  was a hard and emotional period that i have  been in for a while and this translated in writing the music together with the rest of the band.

WHAT THEMES DO THE TEXTS OF YOUR SONGS DEAL WITH? ARE YOUR SONGS MORE POLITICAL OR PERSONAL?

We are not an outspoken band who writes political songs, most of the songs deal with the everyday struggle we have in this life we are living, some personal and some have a political touch in them, and we try to put as much of our emotions in them, bring them with no compromise, say what you mean, mean what you say…..

WHAT SONG IN THE ALBUM ARE YOU MOST ATTACCHED TO?

There are a few songs that i am attached to musicaly and lyricely.

EYES WIDE OPEN  is one of them, the song talks about how we stand in this society , controlled by our goverment , no matter what you do or not , we are being watched 24/7. Or MOURN who talks about loosing your loved ones , when this song was writing , we lost a very close family member at a young age

WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE BELGIAN HARDCORE/PUNK AND DIY SCENE? ARE THERE ANY SQUAT THAT YOU ARE ATTACHED TO?

There is a big scene in Belgium and a lot of new bands are rising from the ground up, bands like HETZE, SILENCE MEANS DEATH, GAGGED, RAW PEACE FRUSTRERAD, ARROGANT….and many more, from the region we are from there is also a big hardcore scene called the H8000 scene, too bad that there has always been a gap between different scene’s here in Belgium, but it is what it is, few active squats here.

HOW IMPORTANT IS THE POLITICAL DIMENSION OF HARDCORE PUNK FOR YOU?

It is very important, punk means revolt , if you are angry about something, speak your mind out  don’t just stand there and act like you are a victim of society, it is easy to claim yourself a punk or hc kid ,rebelling from behind your computer screen, go out on the streets, get involved in a good cause.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR PLAGUE THIRTEEN TO PLAY CRUST/D-BEAT AND BE PART OF THE HARDCORE SCENE?

It means a whole lot to me, it has been a part of my life for more than 30 years, it is a network of friends, a world within the world we are living, I can’t express myself enough how great it has been to visit all the nice places we were able to go and play all around Europe, see how people live, sharing stages with great bands, people inviting you to their homes, made delicious food, give us a place to sleep.

MUSICALLY YOU SOUND VERY SIMILAR TO CERTAIN MODERN CRUST PUNK BANDS OF THE EARLY 2000s. WHICH BANDS HAVE INFLUENCED YOUR MUSIC?

Our main influences are bands like HIS HERO IS GONE, TRAGEDY, FROM ASHES RISE, NEUROSIS…. but also older stuff like NAUSEA, CELTIC FROST, GRIEF,DISCHARGE,MOTORHEAD,….

THE HEALT SITUATION IS NOT STILL STABLE, SO I KNOW IT’S NOT EASY TO TALK ABOUT THE FUTURE. BUT WHAT ARE THE PLANS FOR PLAGUE THIRTEEN IN THE NEXT MONTH? 

We are currently working on writing a new album, and hoping this pandemic will be over soon as we did not play any live gigs for more than a year now, as soon as this blows over we are going to tour Europe again and play as many gigs as possible.

THE COVER OF THE YOUR FIRST S/T ALBUM IS VERY SUGGESTIVE. HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA OF CHOOSING THAT PARTICULAR ARTWORK? WHAT DO YOU WANT TO CONVEY WITH THAT IMAGE?

It represents what mother nature gives us and sometimes we need to stand still and look at its beauty, but it is also a reminder of what we can lose if we keep exploiting this earth , how long can we live this life, this rat race ? Pollution, climate change…..are we doomed ?

CONCLUDE THIS INTERVIEW AS YOU SEE FIT.  THANK YOU AGAIN FOR TAKING THE TIME TO ANSWER NY QUESTIONS AND I HOPE TO BE ABLE TO ORGANISE YOU CONCERTS IN ITALY SOON!

First of all, thank you so much for this interview and giving us the opportunity to present ourselves

We hope to share the stage again very soon!

Stay safe and take care of each other