Saturday, April 30, 2011

Incarceri 9 Interview

1. Can you give us a brief history of the band?

Kol: Well, I started writing the songs in late 2005, but didn't have any members. I tries out various members , with various band names including Centuryspawn, then Black Swamp Chain Gang. Both of those last names were somebody elses ideas. The last group of folks tried to kick me out and our bassist Bst, and our old drummer Marco came with me. We kept the songs He and I wrote, and I came up with the name Incarceri 9. We got Jordan in the band in March of 2008, and thus the current lineup was made. Sadly , in late 2008 we had to let our drummer Marco go for various and irreconcilable reasons. We have since carried on without a permanent drummer until we find the right fit. We released the first album in april 20 2009.

Bst : I made contact with Kol after almost convincing myself to ditch the whole scene. Slow start and much wasted time past while we shuffled through some bad lineup choices, before securing Jordan and expanding our arsenal.

2. How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you before?

Bst: Someone stepping on a placental membrane

Jordan: We see ourselves as a synthesis of all that is metal. We explore a wide range of metal subgenres and someone who is new to the band can go into it expecting to hear familiar styles fused with more challenging approaches in a surprisingly natural union.

Kol: I agree with Jordan and would add that all of our songs are either about dark and emotional themes , or freedom and individualism by rejecting religion and the guitar hero culture that is ruining society today.

3. What is the meaning behind the band's name?

Kol: Incarceri 9 broken down means: In Carceri (italian for prison) 9(in numerology 9 stands for the end or completion) so the name of the first album IN PRISON TIL THE END Iis also the meaning of the bands name. The prison is life , the end is death when we are released.

4. What are some of the best live shows that you have played so far?

Jordan: There's a club here in town called New Street Studio that's always been really good to us. We always enjoy playing for them. Sadly, however, a great many of the venues here in Atlanta are extremely corrupt flat out refuse to pay bands for the services they render. Then they act like the bands are being unreasonable for wanting to get paid. I could write a book (and I just might) about all of the garbage that gets spewed our way in this regard. We actually played a festival gig here one time where we tried to get paid and the promoter said "well I had to pay the bartender and the catering and the bouncers and the sound guy and the lighting guy and the camera guy and I didn't have any left over to pay you." Well guess what- without the bands, none of those other people would have a reason to be there! I have a tendancy to rant about this too much in interviews, so I wont go on, but this is a business and we can't operate our business at a loss. There was a time when people played gigs for each other because they were part of a scene and didn't worry about money, but now that comradery has been corrupted into this petulant "something for nothing" mentality. People ask where I get off not being willing to play gigs for no money and I just say "Who is John Galt?"Bst: I really liked the Atrium venue, a hip hop club in southeastern Atlanta. I’m surrounded by hand painted portraits of various hip hop artist, feeling kinda uncomfortable, like I was playing at their party or something.

5. Are there any plans for a tour?

Bst: As long as I can pass the check for it.

Kol: No plans, but would love to tour Europe,Japan,Canada,South America,Africa,etc. I left out the US because I feel they aren't ready for us because we don't sound like Lamb Of God.

Jordan: As the various markets open up to us, we'll be hitting the road and hitting it hard. Right now the focus is on getting the right label, management, and agent behind us so that we have the proper backing.

6. Have you received any label interest yet?

Kol: There has been from minor overseas labels who want to distribute the new album

Bst: some

Jordan: We've actually been approached by some independant labels from overseas. We've got internet distribution through CDBaby and are in negotiations for in-store distribution in several areas. We don't pretend to be one of these "we don't want to get signed we're all about the music" bands. Fuck that- we want to quit our day jobs and do this full time.

7.How would you describe the lyrical content of the music?

Jordan: We explore a lot of dark topics but there's definately a sort of transcendental aspect to our lyrics as well. Kind of like what Albert Camus proposed in his Theory of Absurdism but with a heavy dose of Ayn Rand Objectivist philosophy and Franz Kafka-esque paranoia. Essentially we argue that life is what you make of it, and no matter how dark and bleak your situation, you can still shape it into something wonderful and beautiful in its own right.

Kol: We delve in to a couple subjects, but the main one is the rejection of religion in order to live stronger and more complete lives without the concern of the fabled afterlife.

Bst: Sick fantasies acted out for the public.

8. What direction do you see the band going into on future releases?

Bst: We are writing songs together now from scratch, putting together more complex arrangements. It will be interesting to see where we go.

Kol: More of a group effort than individual contribution. As a whole it will be heavier and faster on the next album from what I'm seeeing now.

Jordan: When we cut In Prison Till the End, we had basically written our individual song contributions on our own and brought them to the table as completed works. As we've written new material its been more of a group effort and so while listeners can still expect the genre hopping we've done in the past, it will be smoother and more elegant, with each song moving through different styles in a more conscious, atmospheric fashion.

9. What are your main influences music wise or non music wise?

Kol: Life in itself influences me the most. I will go over the bands that influence me the most in the various genres. BM- Celtic Frost, GM- Tiamat, ProgM- Amorphis. Overall , I would say Sabbath, Mercyful Fate, and Iron Maiden

Bst: I believe the biggest influence in what we do is history and cultural study. Grasp that, and then begin to dissect everything around you. Or just watch the biographies of half ton fat people, you’ll get the idea. I take a lot of inspiration from the concept in science fiction that people can evolve socially beyond the need for rigid doctrines and social order.

10. What are you listening to nowadays and what are some good bands or releases that you would recommend?

Jordan: I'm a huge fan of Sigh, which is this Japanese metal band that fuses black metal with jazz fusion. Their album Imaginary Sonicscape is one of the most criminally under appreciated records in history. I'm also a big jazz head, so I would recommend Miles Davis, Pat Metheny and John Zorn. I think the last few Residents albums, since Demons Dance Alone, have been incredible. Especially Animal Lover and Tweedles.

Kol: Really liking Aggaloch right now, but still listen to Celtic Frost, Darkthrone, Tiamat, In Flames, Dark Funeral, Lacuna Coil, Opeth, Amorphis, the list could go on , buit you get the idea.

Bst: I believe in a different type of music for every mood though I never found any use for electronic or dance pop music. Right now I’m diving deep into the vaults of early American blues and grungy garage rock from the 50s and 60s. Fireball Ministry, they fuckin kill.

11. Does Satanism or Occultism play a role in your music and life?

Bst: :no stock in Satan or the occult. Some of my songwriting themes are mathematical, but I tend to live my own simple philosophy.

Kol: Philosophically, I agree with Satanism, but I am not a member of the religion , because I am anti religious. It plays a big role in my writing for this band though. I myself am agnostic about the idea of divinity, but I'm an atheist when it comes to ALL of the worlds religions. To me , if there is a god, it does't care.

Jordan: I'm the only member of the band who is an official Satanist, but we're all sympathetic to the philosophy. I have always viewed religions as tools for programming the mind and Satanism is just about the only one that acknowledges this and places the reigns in the hands of the practitioner rather than some pompous ass preacher or a sniveling congregation. I use Satanism as a means to conciously strip away all mental barriers that could hinder me in my pursuit of my goals in life. I find this to be extremely empowering, and its led me to realize that many of the things in my life that I thought were serious obstructions are just paper tigers, to borrow from the Communist lexicon.I definately recommend studying Aleister Crowley as well as Isreal Regardie so as to have a fully informed understanding of occult thought, but I strongly advise against joining any of the modern incarnations of the organizations they championed as many of them now thrive on the kind of intimidation and group-think that has cause Christianity and Islam to out-stay their welcome.

12. What are some good books or films that you would recommend?

Jordan: I absolutely recommend the writings of Harlan Ellison. His work changed my life early on when I read stories like "I Have no Mouth and I Must Scream" and "The Deathbird." I have 26 of his books in my collection and he's the only author whose work I collect so rabidly. I actually have three copies of Stalking the Nightmare, two of them hardcover first editions. As for other authors my favorites include Haruki Murakami, Philip K. Dick, Franz Kafka, Herman Hesse, Ayn Rand, and many others.For films I recommend Takashi Miike's titles like "Audition," "Visitor Q," "Ichi the Killer," and so on. Shinya Tsukamoto's work is amazing is well like "A Snake of June," "Bullet Ballet," and Tetsuo I and II. Kyoshi Kurosawa is fantastic as well. "Cure," "Pulse," "Charisma" and "Bright Future" are really stunning.

Bst: Eric Bogosian’s one man show, Robert Heinlein’s Time Enough For Love, Leonard Pitts, Edward Current, Frank Herbert, Douglas R. Hofstadter, Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh

13. How would you describe the metal scene in your home state?

Bst: Weak, under promoted, underappreciated.Kol: total shitJordan: There's a huge scene when it comes to established bands. I went to the show Nightwish played here recently and it was a packed house. Same thing with Dream Theater, Queensryche, Megadeth, etc. The problem is that there's no support network for local bands trying to get established. There's a great deal of apathy when it comes to supporting new bands.

14. Any final words?

Kol: We look forward to spreading our music , and thanks for your zine, love the work your putting in to help expose bands like us.

Bst: thanks for your time , look forward to seeing some of you soon.

Jordan: Thank you for your interest in and support of Incarceri 9. When we conquer this insipid planet, your name shall be on the Good List and no harm will come to you.

15. Thanks for the interview?

Jordan: Thank you.