translated by Markéta, thank you!
interview with legendary death metal band Brutality - answered Jeff Acres
Ave BRUTALITY! I´m just sitting by my music player and I´m listening to your new album “Sea of Ignorance”. I have to admit that I love it. How do you as an author see this album after a while? Would you change anything?
I loved the way the album turned out. Everything we did to get this album out for our fans was worth it. This is an album our fans have been waiting for. Of course as you listen to it over and over you find little things you might want change. But as a whole this album turned out better than we could have hoped for.
“Sea of Ignorance” has been published for a while, however you must have head some opinions. What do fans think about it? How about critics? Have you played any songs live yet? How do those songs work on concerts?
The fans love it, this is what they were hoping to here from us. We have been getting a lot of good reviews, and a few bad ones. Not everybody is going to like you.
The first thing that hit me was the cover of your album. It fill the music of this album in perfectly. I’m an old and honest fan so I need my music right here physically, I have to own the music. So that´s why mp3 formats are not very interesting for me. I would say that the publisher did a perfect job. It is said in the booklet that it is job of Kostas Vaxevanos and Hammer Art. How did you find out about his work? Didn´t you want to get back to Michael Stansfield who did your famous albums in the 90th? How was the cooperation with Kostas and how did you create the cover (I read somewhere that the author is Max Winter)? Did you choose from previously prepared artwork or did Max created one just for you based on the music?
Kostas released the album in Europe on his label Repulsive Echo. Max Winter and Art Hammer worked together on the layout. On the U.S. version Max did the cover art work and layout, Art did the booklet cover. The booklet cover that Art did is the album cover on the European release. Max came up with that concept just for us. We wanted to get Mike Stansfield to do stuff for us early on but it wasn't to be.
We have known Jarret for over 20 years. We used to play shows with him and his band Eulogy. He is a great producer and knew how to get the best out of us. It’s the best sounding album we have ever done, and Jarret is the reason for it.
This album is the first long-play album after 20 long years. During those years the technique is getting better and different and also the attitude of people is different. Everything is louder, made for mp3 players. Do you thing the recording and the way of recording is much more different after all those years?
We recorded like we always have, nothing fancy. We went in the studio played it and recorded it. We’re not putting it out for digital down load. We want people to get the cd, the artwork, the layout it all goes with the music. They both go hand in hand.
How did you create your songs? In 2013 you published a preview with EP “Ruins of Humans” which was like a continuing of your 90th albums. I have to say that I was little sceptical because I´m a very big fan of old records and I thought to myself that it is impossible to better that that. However, I was nicely surprised. From your old band are only two people in BRUTALITY. Is the composing and creation of new songs with your new members different? Did you compose one song in a time during those long years or did you do this album as a whole in a last few years?
Well on the Ruins ep we had the whole Screams of Anguish lineup. We wanted to do the album the same way, but things happened and we had to do what we had to do. Jay and myself write well together. He writes riffs I write riffs and we get together and write a song. We were writing songs right after we did the Ruins ep.
The booklet says that the lyrics are made by BRUTALITY. What does it mean? Does it mean that your band worked together on them and every person brought something? Who is the author of those lyrics? I have to say that I love it. Your lyrics say my exact feelings of today’s society and world status. The combination of the lyrics and the cover makes frisson. It criticise what is happening in today´s world in a very intelligent way. It makes us think. Do you have some kind of solution for this world? Or we are screwed and there is no return?
Scott writes most of the lyrics, Jay and I come up with some to add to what Scott has. Scott and I will get in a room and start arranging and placing the lyrics to the music. We have a song on the new album called Fatal Cure about the solution to fix this fucked up world. The way we see it is the only way to fix it is to destroy it and start over. So in other words were screwed.
After all those long 20 years there is one thing that won´t let me sleep. Why was BRUTALITY not more famous? All the time I say that those old albums should be sent to space for future generations so they know how great death metal was played on Earth! I think that you were in conditions to be more famous. Your records were perfect and you were from Florida. At that time those kinds of band were very popular. What do you think about that after all those years? A person become wiser after 20 years.
We got signed after the big death metal boom of the early 90s and were kind of an afterthought. We've been around since the early 80s just like all the other bands of the day, but we never got the pub we should have. It’s all good we embrace it, we know our place in the history death metal and are cool with it.
How about BRUTALITY and concerts? We don´t really hear about you in Europe. And for example OBITUARY have tours all the time. Do you want to have some tour with your new album? And I have to ask – how about you and Europe? You belong to my “dream list” of bands which I want to see live on stage! And I am not the only one in the Czech Republic.
We have jobs and families and don't want to do long tours, we want to do some festivals and bigger shows. You can play in front of more people doing it like that than doing a whole tour. We hope to be doing some fests in the near future.
Today people don’t buy CDs they download them on the internet. Correct me if I´m wrong, but you haven´t put your album on bandcamp, etc. for download. Why exactly? I personally get it, however today there are people who don´t even buy an album they are too lazy. What about you and the status of the musical industry today? You are an underground band, however you must have been hit by downloading music.
We want people to buy the cd. You need to have the whole package to get the understanding of what were all about. We have no plans on putting it out for downloads.
“Sea of Ignorance” is published only on CD. Do you think about vinyl? This medium is getting more popular those days.
We are in the process of getting it put on vinyl for a late summer release. Its going to be killer, with some really cool extras. Keep an eye out for it.
You published your album in Repulsive Echo Records. They are from Greece. Why this label? Didn´t you want to try some bigger labels? Your music could go to a bigger amount of fans. Do you like the work of this label? I have to admit that I didn´t know this label until now. By the way, I order this album from you to the Czech Republic and it is very expensive thanks to the mail office.
We have been working with Kostas for a while now, he is a fan and we want to work with cool people. We got offers from a few labels, but all they want to do is rip you off. We are doing this all on our own. We own all the rights and we call all the shots. We only work with people that are fair to us and we will be fair to them.
What about rights on your old albums? How does it work? I have the old originals in my collection, however (and correct me if I´m wrong) they were published again in 2014. And to be honest the CD by Argentine Disembodied Records was not very good. The vinyl was OK but the classic CD not so much. Were you able to take care and change things as a band with this? At the beginning the albums were published by Nuclear Blast? Or don´t you thinking about publishing albums on your own? If it´s possible?
We rereleased Screams and Sky turns black a year or so ago. We did a licensing with Disembodied to release a small number of the first 2 albums. We own all the rights to our releases. We plan on rereleasing all our albums in the future.
As a band you did stop playing a few times. The first time was between 1998 - 2001 and after that you did came back for a few years. After that there was no BRUTALITY and finally in 2012 you were back. Why exactly? What happened? I´m sure that keep a group of people together is not easy at all, however you career was pretty good at that time. What did you do in those years when you were not playing?
We wanted to do it right or not at all. Each time we tried to get going again it just didn't work. This time we knew it was right and we did a good album for our fans. We got married had kids, jobs, you know normal life. Some of us still did music, some got out of it.
Do you listen some new albums which you would want to share? What exactly does BRUTALITY listen? Who is the inspiration for you in case of musicians? We know that you like the BLACK SABBATH. What do you think about their last album?
I like all kinds of music from Jonny Cash to Celtic Frost. We all like different kinds of music and it shows in our song writing. As far as influences, Gezzer Butler, Steve Harris, and Cliff Burton are my favourites, but there are many others I like as well. I love all the Sabbath albums from Born Again on back, major influence on me.
Do you know and listen some Czech bands?
Not really, but let know of some so I can check them out.
What is BRUTALITY going to prepare for this year? Anything new and special? Are you going to support your album with some longer tour?
Right now just to get this album out there and see what happens. We plan on doing the vinyl soon and album shirts.
Thank you so much for the interview and for your music! It was honour to do this with you. I wish you that this new album is sold and I hope that we will see each other in concerts in the Czech Republic!
Thanks for your support Asphyx and for the killer interview, and thanks to all the fans around the world that have supported us all these years. STAY BRUTAL!!!!!!!!http://repulsiveecho.bigcartel.com/