Monday, September 24, 2018

Promotional Video Review: MASTIC SCUM Dyers Eve [Metallica Cover] 2018 by Dave Wolff

Dyers Eve [Metallica Cover] 2018
Tribute to Metallica`s 30th anniversary of “…And Justice for All"
Place of origin: Salzburg, Austria
Genre: Death metal/Grindcore
Produced by Harry Gandler, Mike Kronstorfer, Gösser Bier
Mixed at Grindlab Studio
Mastered at Metalforge Studio
Release date: August 25, 2018
The Austrian death metallers Mastic Scum released their cover of Dyers Eve August 25, thirty years to the day since Metallica released …And Justice For All and made impressions on popular music that still resonate in the present. I could rave about what an awesome gesture it was and how …And Justice For All impacted the band. Instead I’ll dive beneath the surface and hopefully encourage some thought about whether the song is still relevant and the reasons another Metallica cover would be received well in today’s underground. Bear in mind that Metallica is one of the most covered bands in metal’s history. Personally I always liked Metallica and respect them for their long struggle to be recognized on their own terms, in the midst of controversy that surrounded them more than once. The most recent controversy came from their 2017 Grammy performance with Lady Gaga. Uproar ensued as to whether the band needed Gaga to validate them (Eddie Trunk was particularly and understandably vocal about this). Is it selling out to appeal to a wider pop audience? Or is it a logical progression of a band who always did what they wanted. How would a wider pop audience relate to older songs like No Remorse, Escape, Welcome Home (Sanitarium) and Dyers Eve? Also, how would fans of extreme metal relate to the song three decades after it was released? The song itself is a rant from a former teenager entering his 20s directed at his parents for creating a suppressive, overprotective environment around him. It’s not as much disrespect as it is a statement of confusion and anguish from someone sent on his own after living in said environment. Death metal and extreme metal are coming closer to being respected on their own merit, so there is a question of whether fans in the late 10s will be able to relate to the lyrics as much as fans from when …And Justice For All first came out. Fans today will likely understand Mastic Scum’s desire to honor a band whose influence has been so far reaching for so long. But would they understand the isolation and disillusionment of a kid who grew up in a time when metal was not as respected as it is today? The answer will probably depend on each person and his own experiences. All this being said, Mastic Scum do a fine job commemorating …And Justice For All and placing their stamp on Dyers Eve. They manage to give the track a modern DM flavor while keeping its original thrash metal fire. The lyrics are easily discernible for long time Metallica fans, without a need for a lyric sheet, This cover is worth checking out while you’re waiting for new material from them. -Dave Wolff

Maggo Wenzel: Vocals
Harry Gandler: Guitars
Wolfgang Rothbauer: Bass
Man Gandler: Drums

Friday, September 21, 2018

EP Review: THROMBUS Mental Turmoil (La Caverna Records) by Serafima Okuneva

Mental Turmoil
Place of origin: Eugene, Oregon, USA
Genre: Death metal
‘Release date: July 11, 2018 (reissue)
First released in 1993
Greetings from the past, dear Deads! From the depths of forgotten releases from the early 90's rushes Thrombus with their EP ‘Mental Turmoil’ with official reissue their tape from 26 years! Thrombus‘ first and only demo features tight performances, on-time and in-tune delivery, a clear sound and many riffs. Judging by the guitar work and vocal performances, I’d say they were listening to a fair amount of Autopsy or Carcass. Toss in some thrash riffing and ‘Mental Turmoil’ ends up not far from Unleashed, and would have fit in perfectly in the death metal scene of that era.
I read about the city of Eugene, Oregon USA from the early 1990s and was even more pleasantly surprised by the appearance of this demo in that area. In 1990 the city had nothing in common with extreme music, there were college towns, suburban wastes, hippy communes, and crust punk havens. Back in 1992, the band began working on their material and in 1993 released a demo cassette in a limited edition of 100 copies. Due to this limited edition and the subsequent explosion of genre activity this release was unfairly and permanently forgotten. It's hard to say how much the demo is significant to the history of death metal in America, but it's definitely a pleasant event in the history of this place, a cheerful, evil greeting from the past. This is a special record of defiance and non-conformity and I like it so much.
It has an eerie, dense, somewhat absurd, disgustingly beautiful heavy sound. The lively "basement" sound says the band knows what they want to achieve and how they should sound. Here you will meet slowly doomed, then madly rushing, maniacal guitar solos, swirling cyclical oppressive riffs, then a death rattle with monolithic powerful drums. ‘Mental Turmoil’ is a set of damn good tracks written and performed at death metal’s arguably highest classic form. -Serafima Okuneva

Mike Brown: Lyrics (tracks 1-4, 6), vocals, guitars
Isamu Sato: Guitars
Darren Baker: Bass
Karl Fowler: Drums, vocals, lyrics (track 5)

Track list:
1. From beyond
2. Mental turmoil
3. Fetid mass
4. Structured
5. Embolic infarction
6. What a waste

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Zine Publisher Interview: Serafima Okuneva (INDUSTRIA MAGAZINE)

Interview with Serafima Okuneva, editor and publisher of INDUSTRIA MAGAZINE

You recently presented Industria Magazine at Bigfest, Russia’s largest comic book and small press festival this past August. How did you hook up with the people involved, and who did you become acquainted with while you were there?
I have great friends, especially from the horror almanac Fantomas which is based in Ekaterinburg, Russia. They were invited to participate in Bigfest but couldn’t come and advised me to go. It’s strange, but there was not much of horror culture at the festival. But I met a lot of interesting people who are active in the comic and small press cultures. I met Johnny Rayan who publishes the great angry Prison Pit comics, haha. This is not the last event where I’ve promoted Industria. Bigfest was on the 11th of August, and the Cruel Letter exhibition was on the 12th of August. You can view information here.

Tell the readers about your August appearance at Cruel Letter Exhibition and the people you met there.
The curator of the exhibition found me on Instagram and offered me a chance to participate in the event. She invited me to promote the magazine in the form of an installation and it seemed interesting. Industria's installation included a totem in a web, which was based on the idea of chthonic energy, the engine of human creativity. The totem was highlighted by red candles. In the background, there was a teaser to the last issue of Industria with labyrinths, candles and fire broadcast (I have teasers for each issue of my zine). Fire is an expansive aspiration to the outside world; red is the color of passion and life. All of these are integral elements of Industria magazine’s concept, which is managed to be implemented in this form.

Do you attend conventions like Bigfest and Cruel Letter Exhibition to promote each year?
There are a lot of interesting events with many amazing designers and artists who are interested in the dark forms and aesthetics of lettering. I met Johnathan Castro, a designer from the Netherlands, who has experience with design with "ugly" lettering. He likes the history of lettering, along with experimental, ambient and drone like Sunn O))). He is a great master with great taste in musicians, haha. I really hope that I will be able to present my magazine at various festivals every year, but the festival culture is just beginning in our country. I am pleased to be a part of this movement.

Where can Johnathan Castro’s work be viewed on the internet?
You can find a lot of information about his cease on his site It will be interesting for people who love digital utopias, symbology and ancient cultures, and visual expression in aggressive and futuristic forms.

What sort of a statement do you think Castro is trying to make through his work?
I think that Jonathan would like to express his uniqueness in art through his bright colors and forms. Create for the community and give a fresh drink in understanding what design can be.

What does Industria Magazine cover, how long has it been active and what inspired you to start the zine?
My first thoughts of publishing a zine was appeared when I learned about Weird Tales which ran stories by the lovely genius writer H.P. Lovecraft. I was impressed by the unique illustrations, the special unusual style and the content in this pulp magazine. At times I found scans of rare metal zines, which gave me unique information, ideology and a desire to support their movement. I really like small press and zine culture. I like to feel the paper in my hands, stuffed with specific illustrations, and containing unique information. I want to support small press culture in our country and CIS countries. I talk about how people inspire aesthetics and ideas realized in the Dark Art; the connection of fear and pleasure. All of these are interesting to me, and I'm glad I find people in Russia and CIS countries with whom I can discuss similar and common things.
My zine is about fantasy and escapism. I'm inspired by people who are not afraid to look deeper, who admit this to themselves, develop themselves and love their Abyss. Dark energy has power and inspiration in itself, no less than light, and the connection of fear and pleasure has always aroused our imagination. The idea of Industria involves various manifestations of escapism, and seeks to develop this fearlessness before Darkness in people, cooperation with themselves, their dark sides, fantasies and their abilities.
I feel I'm on an uninhabited island and I like it. This is because I don't know of any similar magazine in our country at present, which combine musical and literary synthesis with a share of pop-scientific articles as the main topics. The first issue was dedicated to Lovecraft, the second to Isidore Ducasse, and the third to fantasy as an unethical instrument in creativity. I want to continue exploring the phenomena of escapism, fantasy, fear and pleasure in creativity. Particularly in extreme and transgressive forms of art. Very few people talk about it, and it’s definitely worth attention.

How well known has Industria Magazine come to be in Russia and other countries?
I do not know how to assess its fame, but I am somewhat known in Berlin (thanks to Moscow’s Zine Ffest 2017) and thanks to you my work is spreading even wider. The small press culture in Russia is not as lively as I would like. I live in St. Petersburg, the cultural capital of Russia, but here people often think more about how to do something than just do it. We have a lot of small press events in Moscow, with interesting people, but often it's the work of designers who don't interview metal musicians and weird/horror authors. But horror culture is gaining momentum, and I'm happy about that. Fantomas from Ekaterinburg is beautifully decorated with terrific horror and strange prose. They produce shirts, postcards and calendars with unique illustrations.

What is Moscow’s Zine Fest like from your experience? Was 2017 the first year this event was held?
Zine Fest is a unique event, where various representatives of small Russian and European press are invited. People sell their magazines and works, make presentations, and some printing laboratories organize their workshops and master classes. Separately, there are representatives of independent music labels with their distro, music concerts and installations. The event was held from 2017 and was a great success. I hope many more years will be spent.

How many issues of Weird Tales magazine have you collected since you first heard of it?
I didn't collect the magazines, only scans. I have scans of nine issues of the magazine and more than twenty scans of the covers.

How much information about Lovecraft and Ducasse was published in the first two issues of Industria?
The first issue included an article on the theme of escapism of The Dream Cycle of H. P. Lovecraft. It examined the author's biography, and the study of the phenomenon of escapism in the stories Selefais, The White Ship, Polaris, Other Gods and others. The article was written by the Russian literary critic Dmitry Danilov. In the central part of the second issue is an article by writer and publicist Oleg Lunev called The Song Of Fear. It tells of the biography of Ducasse and analyzes his famous work, Maldorord's Song.

Did you read the publications by Lovecraft and Ducasse in addition to publishing the articles about them?
I want to publish materials in which I'm well versed. I really love Lovecraft and Ducasse. These people have given much understanding of myself through their creativity.

Are there any Russian based horror publications worth recommending to the readers?
Fantomas is in two languages and distributed by Lovecraft Publishing House. I'm really looking forward to the release of the horror almanac The Malachite Coffin. There will be horror stories inspired by Ural folklore published.

How did you first hear of Fantomas, and how much printed material and merch did you purchase from them?
I learned about it in autumn of last year. I saw posts about them on Vkontakte and offered to collaborate with them. The editor suggested we exchange our magazines and since then we have been cooperating. We try to support each other on the Internet while exchanging our magazines. To date they have released two issues, and I have both of them. I also have postcards, stickers and a unique calendar for 2018 with crazy illustrations of the most different evil entities.

What other horror authors are you interested in and why? Does your love of horror include movies as well as magazines and literature?
My interest in horror literature was brought up from the moment I found Edgar Poe and his subtle sense of fear, trepidation and horror at the unknown or incomprehensible. Later I discovered Lovecraft, whose work "The Supernatural Horror In Literature" opened my eyes to the big and rich world of this genre. Horace wrote "The Castle of Otranto" (the first gothic novel in literature) with details of gloomy and mysterious descriptions with the idea of fatal retribution falling on descendants for the sins and crimes of their ancestors. Matthew Gregory Lewis’ archetypically sensational gothic novel "The Monk", according to Brian Stableford, is one of the hardest and blood-numbing pieces of the genre. I adore this story of seduction of the monk Ambrosio by the Devil, here for the first time the synthesis of English and German Gothic originated, which in many ways determined the development of a fantastic and horror literature. Well, this is not all the literature I was subjected to. Of great importance to me is Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce, an innovator in the genre of short stories, a master of short and catchy prose, sometimes frankly horrible. He masterfully transferred gothic stories to the realm of the mind, the psyche seemed to him an ideal place for the development of gloomy aesthetics. Algernon Henry Blackwood also greatly influenced me and my propensities in the field of mystical literature. His masterful ability to blur the line between reality and supernatural, the thrill of nature amazes me and will continue to amaze for a very long time. Of modern authors, James Havok is attracted with his transgressive literature, which opens up new avenues for understanding the horror and disgust for the audience.
My love of horror includes not only literature. Magazines in such subjects, as you can already understand, I do not know so much. Films are a separate love, but not as capacious as music or literature. I admire the talents of Dario Argento, Clive Barker, David Cronenberg, Brian De Palma, I love the work of the first wave of horror in the spirit of Golem from 1920 and Faust from 1926.

Name some of the works of Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce and Algernon Henry Blackwood that resonated most strongly with you.
Definitely Chickamauga by Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce! It brilliantly blends the lyric of childhood with the horror of human violence, the oniric universe of innocent imagination with the cruelty of war. The ghosts of the past walk with the hauntings of the present, and the future is so uncertain as to what would follow after the last words. It's full of symbolism of light finding its opposite, in a paradox of life and death, cruel reality and sweet illusion. It's creepy and disturbing. I am inspired by "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge", in which Farquhar’s overindulgence of fantasy and the reimagining of his fate ultimately undoes him. He cannot realize his desires in the real world, and in the end, he is prey to the delusions and misinterpretations that led him to the gallows. However, though time is nature to subjective perceptions, Ambrose Bierce makes it obvious that it cannot be escaped. In the end, all is darkness and silence!
Algernon Blackwood’s novella The Willows connects reality and the supernatural. Its mysterious nature is unclear. At times it appears malevolent or treacherous, at times mystical and almost divine. The landscape is actually an intersection, a point of contact with a "fourth dimension." Such a weird and beautiful idea!

Are there other authors from the eras of Bierce and Blackwood whose work you find as creepy and disturbing?
One of my favorite writers of that era is the great Gustav Meyrink. His interest in occult disciplines along with his talent was born with incredible aesthetics. I think you know writers like Arthur Machen and Clark Ashton Smith. Their prose are so deep in symbolism, mysticism and sometimes in frank horror.

What speaks to you about the work of Dario Argento, Clive Barker, David Cronenberg and Brian De Palma? Is it the writing, the soundtrack or the atmosphere of their movies? Name some examples.
Of all these directors, Dario Argento is the closest. His work is full of deep mysticism, theatricality and unique characters. His use of lights and colours, scenery and camera work - he was largely an innovator in the horror genre. I adore the Goblin band, their progressive, sometimes disturbing rock that perfectly fits into his films. Suspiria, Profondo Rosso are my favorite works of his.
David Cronenberg’s aesthetics of body-horror (The Fly, for example) interest me. His raising the problem of what is considered normal, and what is normal - the abnormality, the fragility of the boundaries between these concepts. Videodrome, Naked Lunch, eXistenZ all interest me.
Clive Barker is a talented writer, director, artist and photographer. I admire his talent and ability to come up with unreal worlds of brutality, blood and the supernatural. Hellraiser is a cult movie of mystical horror, with a vast universe and scary demons called Cenobites, whose pleasure is pain, torture and suffering. Lord Of Illusions was good, atmospheric and sometimes terrible. Clive Barker skillfully combines different genres, making specific decorations, and as a result we get a great movie.
I admire the ability of de Palma to shoot criminal detectives: to feel the characters and so brightly and characteristically to reveal their image. In Scarface with Al Pacino and Snake Eyes you can see his favorite tricks with long scenes and splitting the screen into parts. I love his mystical thriller Carrie. It's the first screen version of Stephen King's novel and the only one shot in the 1970s. Here, horror seems to be generated by the nature of the characters and their relationship with each other. Very beautiful and unusual.

Describe the movies Golem (1920) and Faust (1926) and why you believe they best represent the first wave of horror.
More correctly, the 1920s a public interest in this genre appeared in the 1920s. Many of the earliest full-length horror films were German expressionism, which Golem directly confirms. Faust is from Germany too actually. It is wonderful that by using limited technical possibilities in these times, directors showed modern filmmakers a real master class.

Does the horror cinema of today have the same effect on the viewer? Is horror cinema better or worse off since those days?
I don’t think modern horror movies have the same impact on viewers like. People were less used to such aesthetics, knew little about the culture and probably feared more. The fear of the unknown, as Lovecraft said, is one of the strongest feelings in human nature. Now the audience is more satiated, but the cinema is ready for it. Now the horror genre is an entire independent industry where the development is cultivated and, above all, technical. More narrow specialists, more ways of expression. It's all interesting and can be impressive for the viewer. But in the past there was a limited supply of resources, the territory of the horror movie was little studied, there were more experiments and limited possibilities.

What has James Havok published recently? What do you mean when describing his work as transgressive literature?
The last work of James Havok is Ultra-Gash Inferno: Erotic-Grotesque Manga by Suehiro Maruo which written with Takako Hiroishi in 2001, but I've not read it. Transgressive literature is a new term and it describes various psychedelic experiences, altered states of consciousness, rigid breaking of the norms and stereotypes of society by heroes, violation of social taboos. Therefore, for such literature, the themes of drugs, unconventional sex, painful relationships and mental perversions are characteristic. Heroes fall into the ultimate reflection, subject their consciousness to incredible experiments and commit deliberately illogical actions. Its existing boundaries between the permitted and the forbidden, reality and insanity, bad and good, are delineated and then broken down.

Do you have a staff working on the zine with you, are you seeking writers, or do you prefer to publish it on your own?
I prefer to do online reviews and magazine interviews with bands on my own, but sometimes there are enthusiasts who can offer help. For example, one interview was completely made by one new friend Igor and he also composed questions for another band for the third issue.

What band did Igor interview for the zine’s third issue? Do you and he feel his questions brought out enough to interest readers in this band? Is Igor planning more interviews for future issues?
Igor wrote questions for the old school black metal band Black Goat from Serpuhov and conducted an interview with the one woman black metal project Terribilis from Voronezh. He knows the history of these projects quite well, and he had a rather interesting way of writing the material. To date, we do not know whether Igor can help with the next issue, but it is possible in the future.

Do you hire artists to design front covers for each issue of the zine? If so, who have you hired so far?
It was chaotic looking for artists, not knowing specific resources where they can be found. I went by random hooks and clues, found links on the internet, but I did it and I'm pleased about the results. Also, the cover of the third issue was prepared by artists Dmitry Valentinovich and Zhenya Sazhin. I cooperated with Dmitry when I was working with the first issue, he is very attentive to detail and has rich experience. He likes to create something outside the political, religious and moral-ethical framework, which is important to me. Dmitry also makes tattoos, draws art for bands, gigs, festivals and whatnot. Zhenya Sazhin is self-taught with a beautiful taste in a dark context. He also draws for Russian and foreign musicians and designs tattoos. He helped me with the cover of the second issue and the poster for the presentation of the magazine. The cover of Issue three is drawn by them in four hands, and I think it's the quintessence of the Industria aesthetic: mystical and gloomy.

How many bands have Dmitry and Zhenya designed art for? Where can supporters of extreme music see their work?
Both artists have large catalogues. It's difficult to say precisely but you can check their art in these links (Zhenya) and (Dmitry).

Are you corresponding with zine editors from the U.S. in addition to AEA zine? Where else in Europe are you making contacts?
You're the first person outside my country who is interested in my zine and I'm really happy for it. I rarely thought about it before, and I understand it was a mistake. I must gradually open up new channels of distribution and interaction. It's a new level of understanding life and it's wonderful. I know I will find many more people abroad interested in similar themes, and meeting you inspired me.

You also have an interest in reviewing underground music. What genres do you have the most interest in?
In fact, I consider music to be one of the parts of the theory of cosmopolitanism, haha. The universal means of influencing the psyche, the soul and mind of man, and I really like completely different music: from jazz to harshwall noise. But I mostly like to write about dark and experimental genres: death metal, black metal, progressive metal and their subgenres. I really like doom and hard rock in the spirit of the Pentagram and Saint Vitus, I respect dark ambient and dungeon synth music. Ritual, space, horror ambient - it's all very interesting to me. Noise music and the whole wide range of its expression is also a real cosmos for me, an opportunity to find myself in it and understand a little more of the usual things.

For how many printed and online publications have you reviewed bands and their releases to date?
In the three issues of my magazine there were interviews with thirteen bands and musicians who played or play in the genres of the crust metal, doom rock, black metal, death metal, black/death, horror synth, dark/horror/space/ritual ambient, in the first number was even psychedelic rock, but it's in the past haha. I like to write about the dark forms of art and music in particular. Also I have public support for the magazine in the Vkontakte network, where I make reviews of films, music, literature and visual arts that fit into the concept and aesthetics of Industria that inspired me for what I'm doing. It's difficult to calculate the quantity of internet reviews, because I've done public for three years and about two to four times a week I'm publishing reviews.

What bands have you discovered recently whose albums made a lasting impression on you?
We have good examples like The Spirit from Germany and their album Sounds From The Vortex (2017), Rögnirgoden and their EP Tower of Black Magic (2018), Darvaza from Italy/Norway with album Darkness In Turmoil (2018) and the new album of Craft, White Noise And Black Metal (2018). It's about black metal. Towards Of Megalith by Disma (2011) is an incredible example of modern death-doom metal. It was reissued this year and I'm so glad. Peeled Veins (2017) by Spectrum Voice is great and terrifying; I’m waiting for the new album. Phrenelith is a murderous death metal band from Denmark with their album Desolate Endscape (2017). I’m interested in ambient, noise and drone music because it has more possibilities for self-expression. I’m waiting for the new release of Sunn O))). Other bands I like include Maha Pralaya (Russia) with their albums Bon (2017) and Portal (2018), Ugasanie from Belarus with their album Ice Breath Of Antarctica (2018), the Armenian project Aaram 17 with Karahunj (2018), Atrium Carceri (Sweden) with Codex album (2018). I hope you understand this is a little thing that came to mind. There are many more interesting releases, though there are always enough stamped bands and not interesting musicians in our time.

What do you generally find unique about all those releases you mentioned above? How much more room for originality and creativity do you see in extreme metal, ambient, noise and drone?
Some of the these musicians feel the atmosphere very deeply and very skillfully create it, transmits it, someone very technically and innovatively performs the passages already familiar to us, someone has his own unique style, often the musicians who really impress me are really evil and confidently play their music. Probably, in extreme live music there is not much left untilled land, but you can give birth something new or unique in its way to do what we have already heard. Noise and ambient embrace very different approach to creating music, these genres have more means of expression and opportunities to do something new and it's very exciting.

How much does the network Vkontakte help you promote your zine? Do you connect with fans outside Russia there?
I have no small audience there, but for now the network has a lot of weak points. I think to change my plan of action, I should go to Facebook to find a new audience interested in the zine. What about a foreign audience? There is the question of how interested they might be in a zine printed in Russian. It can be interesting and unusual, but to read it would be a big challenge. I plan to make a subsidiary publication for Industria where there will be more visuals, rather than textual information. I plan this to expand my interaction with the outside world.

How extensively do you research a band before reviewing their work?
If the question relates to the zine directly, knowledge of details of the group or musician is important to me. I don't like the template questions and answers, I want to make interesting, sometimes provocative material. I think that understanding well what you are dealing with is a key to success.

In what ways would you say your interviews are interesting and provocative? Would you say the same for your reviews?
I would not say that my interviews are so provocative. Rather, they can contain these questions. It's important to keep the audience in attention, and questions about ideology of the project or unusual cases with their creativity can help in this. I try to make reviews interesting and if I have a lot of information about band and their material it's possible to make review unique and interesting.

Are you consistently researching new subject matter to discuss in your zine? If so, what have you found recently?
I'm in a chronic search for interesting, unique information for the magazine. The subject of discussion is similar; the role of fantasy in creativity, the uniqueness of the creativity of a particular person, the connection of fear and pleasure, the role of the dark ways in creativity. But these topics are revealed in each issue in different ways. What I found and would like to use in the new issue, I'll keep a secret for now.

What bands are you seeking to feature in the next issue? Do you plan to interview more bands outside Russia in future issues?
Again I'm interviewing not only Russian bands. I am also interested in musicians from CIS countries. I want to support my country’s culture and those associated with it with. I interviewed bands from Ukraine and Belarus, but I want to explore the territory further” Georgia, Armenia, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan and other places. Underground scenes there are not known well, and this definitely attracts my attention. At the moment I also don't want to talk about specific information about the next issue. I can say that we continue to discuss with black-death, black metal, dark ambient and noise bands and musicians.

From what countries would you most like to interview bands for the zine, if the opportunity presented itself?
Probably I would like to explore spaces that are little known to the general public. I interested in it would also be interviewed by those musicians who integrate aesthetics, ideology or ancient cultures or religions of their homeland or simply interesting for them in their creativity. Interested in South America and eastern countries like Iran or the United Arab Emirates may be.

How soon do you expect the new issue of Industria to be completed and released?
I’m slowly collecting the material and waiting for December, when the designer will be free to work with me. I really hope that at the beginning of the spring the audience will see a new issue of Industria.

Do you hope to promote the zine more actively when it is made available for purchase?
I want to participate in various events and create such events by myself, because there are not many activists in Russia supporting the culture of music or horror small press. At the moment I've sold all copies of all three issues, but I want to sell and talk more active and more interesting about the fourth issue of Industria.

Industria Magazine on Vkontakte

-Dave Wolff

Band Interview: EXAMINE by Dave Wolff

Interview with Sean of EXAMINE

What are the origins of Examine and how long have the band members been involved in the New York Hardcore scene?
Examine started in 2015. We had all known one another from other hardcore bands we had been in. I had been in Resistance back in the day and I’m 2015 I was in On The Offense. OTO had just broken up and I wanted to start something new, so I hit up Gil, whose band Vexed was kind of at a standstill and asked him if he wanted to hook up and see what we could come up with. He was down to do it, I booked studio time, and the day before we jammed I still didn’t have a drummer. So I asked Shuffles who had been in Abject! and Close To The Edge to help out and fill in. So after a few jams we came up with a few songs and we were all digging it. I hit up my friend Mike who had played bass in Olde York, Sainam and On The Offense and he liked the sound we were doing. So he came aboard and Shuffles became our full time drummer.
I first got into the NYHC scene around 1986, and the other guys came in through the ‘90’s. 

Which local clubs have you and the others in the band attended? Were there any clubs where the band members met or did you know one another outside the clubs?
I don’t think there are any local clubs that at least one of us hasn’t attended, haha. CBGB’s was my Sunday church. Then places like Coney Island High, Castle Heights, Pyramid, Wetlands. And in the past recent years there’s been Hilltap, Parkside, Lucky 13’s, and The Grand Victory. I don’t think any of us met hanging out in clubs. We’ve all been in bands for a while, and I know I met the guys just from whatever band I was playing in ended up playing on a show with bands they were in, that’s how we all became friends. 
How did you first hear about the hardcore scene, and do you remember the first show you went to? What about your first show experience convinced you to continue going and why have you been a part of the scene as long as you have?
I first heard of Hardcore through my cousin Stacey. She is a year or so older than me, and we went over to their house for something or other. She sneaks me and my brother into her room and played us “I Saw Your Mommy...” by Suicidal Tendencies, and we we’re “Holy Shit!!!” Then I had a friend named Sal who was into Stormtroopers Of Death, and that’s where I first heard of New York Hard Core, not so much S.O.D. themselves, but the scene. After that I started buying as many Hardcore records as I could. I also remember some metal magazine doing a feature on the best bands out of NYC, and it featured Agnostic Front and the Cro-Mags. What sealed the deal for me was listening to WSOU back in the day, and I remember they came back from a break and played ‘We Gotta Know” by the Cro-Mags, That was it. When I heard that intro I was hooked, and knew I found my place.
The first Hardcore show I went to was a Sunday Matinee at CBGB’s. I don’t remember all the bands on the bill, it was probably my friend’s band Bustin’ Out and Bad Trip. It was just how really cool and down to earth the bands were. Everyone you met wasn’t like a big rock star that hung out backstage during the show. I remember seeing all these guys that were in my favorite bands, just hanging out front of these shows and being mad cool. And most of those guys are the exact same way today. Some of the best in the game have zero ego and will always say what’s up to people. So you became part of it, not just a spectator. You sang with the bands, you chilled with the bands, you contributed in your own way… whether it was starting a zine, or taking pictures, or drawing flyers… whatever. It was an inclusive thing and you were part of it. That’s why I’m still here, Hardcore is the realest of the real, and NYHC is who I am. Many of those people I met when I was in my late teens, are still my friends to this day. 

How many changes have you witnessed in hardcore and underground music in general, for good and bad? Does Examine reflect these changes in any way?
Social Media is something that has had an enormous effect on Hardcore and any underground art form nowadays, both good and bad. On the plus side, anything underground can reach millions of more people today than it ever had back before Social Media. It’s amazing when you see how far and to what corners of the earth Hardcore has spread. My friends were all just a bunch of kids from Queens, and now a bunch of them are doing World Tours, bringing their music to people who it really means something to and are really affected by it. It’s incredible to see. On the negative side of that though, I see a lot of people not actively, physically participating. Before Social Media you HAD to hang out to get merch, see shows, meet people, find out who is playing where and when. And when you hung out you would be exposed to new bands, new people. You spent the whole day at CB’s, so you watched all the bands, not just the headliner. Now you can be part of it and never leave your room. You can buy merch online, watch You Tube videos, watch whole shows on the computer etc. People jump onto Facebook and talk shit like I’ve never seen before, saying things that you could never get away with back then because you had to be physically present, and you had to be physically prepared to back up whatever shit you were talking. And there is definitely a trend nowadays of people trying to “buy” old school credibility. There are people that were born well after 1988, that will eat up anything they can about the earlier years just to feel like they were part of it. They’ll only come out when the established bands are playing, they’ll pass on a free demo from a newer band but buy some re-re-re issue of some older record for $30. Some people are so concerned about being part of what was, that they miss everything that is going on now. New bands get pushed by BNB, ILL ROC, Pissed Off Radio, In Effect etc, etc, etc… and still many people are just not interested. I don’t think EXAMINE reflects the changes, but we’re definitely affected by it. It serves as a good reminder to us that you gotta do this music for yourself. It is kind of freeing to not worry about going over well, or sounding like this or that. We can just relax and write what we want and how we want. 

Despite the negative influence social media has had on the scene when it comes to people actually going to shows, do you still see turnouts when attending?
At the bigger shows yeah the turn outs are amazing. But for the more local bands/shows it’s going to be a hit or miss. I know people that won’t walk three blocks from their house to see a free show with ten bands, but will drop $40 on tickets, plane fare, and a hotel to go three states away to see a festival. When we play local shows with bands that we’re cool with, it’s always a blast. But like I said in NYC you don’t see a lot of people coming out and supporting the newer up and coming bands. 
Is that down to earth feeling you got from shows still part of the scene?
Absolutely, that’s definitely still there regardless of the size of the show. The same OG’s that were hanging out in front after their show back in the days are still hanging out front now. And it’s funny how they have no egos, yet some of the newer bands have massive egos. Every show you walk away with a couple of new friends. 

Something I’ve asked several interviewees is how they felt about CBGB being evicted, and large companies exploiting its memory one way or the other
Losing CBGB’s sucked, for me especially because it had personal meaning to me like it did so many others. But I guess living in NYC you come to expect that as a byproduct of gentrification. And it really sucks to see the smaller venues close up as well. The people at the Grand Victory had that running pretty good for a while and they eventually had to close shop with the hardcore shows. Part of it is gentrification and part of it is again people not really supporting the smaller/local shows. Unfortunately exploitation is part of the game as well, that’s just a matter of time. I see some knucklehead wearing a CB’s shirt because it’s trendy and I just shake my head. They’ll never understand it, and it’s better that they don’t. And you really can’t knock some of these companies trying to cash in, when many of the people from within the scene are trying to cash in as well, I got mad respect for bands like Madball, Agnostic Front, Sick Of It All, Urban Waste, Crown Of Thornz….these bands have been busting their asses non-stop since Day 1, so if anyone deserves a little piece of the pie now that Hardcore is making a little bit of money it’s them. But then you see all these other bands that walked away from it all of a sudden popping back up, re issuing records, re-issuing merch, trying to get every penny from the new kids as possible, they’re no different than Old Navy selling Bad Brains Tee Shirts. 

What personal meaning did CBGB have for you when you were going to shows there?
It was the Mecca for me. That’s where I found who I was. That’s where I found my music, my friends, and my sense of self. It’s like you would go to a matinee and everyone there was either your friend, or was going to be your friend. It was a true sense of unity. 

Have you heard anything about ABC No Rio? I heard they were going to renovate the place some time ago but don’t know what’s going on with it now.
I remember when they first started booking shows at ABC NO RIO. Pretty sure they still book shows but at different venues at the moment. I know Dyanmi and see him from time to time at shows, good people. 
Tompkins Square Park is one of the few locations in NYC still hosting shows, and the admission is free. Which shows there, if any, have you attended recently?
I’ve gone to a few with the not so known bands, I’m not really big on seeing crazy headliner type of shows. I am sorry that I didn’t get to make it to the Dr. Know benefit though. Everyone I know that made it said BnB did an awesome job on the show. 

Have you noticed punk and hardcore making a comeback on Long Island after a dry spell that lasted for years? If so, what bands and venues booking them have you gotten wind of?
Yeah it’s rolling along pretty well on Long Island and we’ve had a chance to play with some really good bands like Live Fast Die Fast and Hangman. I know SBC books a lot of good shows and goes out of their way to put LI bands on bills with NYC bands, which is awesome to mix it up and get bands exposed to one another. I see a lot of shows poppin off at the Amityville Music Hall, a very decent venue.

As far as record outlets go, Long Island lost a handful of them (including Slipped Disc and Empire Records), but some still exist and a Newbury store recently opened in Roosevelt Field. How important are the new outlets and the outlets that are still open?
Record shops always added to the musical experience as a whole, especially underground music. I’d always go to Bleeker Bob’s on the way to CBGB’s and pick up whatever demos I could grab that they were selling. Shops create more of a physical tangible space for the scene. It’s much more tactile then just combing through downloads and streaming.
Do you know of any newer zines people can read to keep up with the scenes in the city and neighboring areas?
I love IN EFFECT and GUILLOTINE. Both of them were around back in the day in printed form and have moved over to the digital forum now.

What local and national fests do you know of that actively support underground music?
The Black N Blue Bowl every year as well as the Diablofest that Danny Diablo does. Those shows take place in NYC and always have a great mix of older bands and newer ones. Then there is the This Is Hardcore Fest in Philly, and I think they still do a Raidfest out of state. 
There have been many documentaries about punk and hardcore on cable TV and social media sites like Youtube. How many have you seen and which of them are the most informative?
I haven’t seen many of them yet, and I doubt I will. I came into it when I did and caught it at a great time. But for me, it’s always been there. It’s a living breathing evolving experience. I try to stay in the present and check out what people are doing now. I’m gonna read Roger Miret’s book and check out Godfathers of Hardcore and Drew Stone’s documentaries once I get some down time. Those are more personal to the old school people and filled with great stories. But as far as far as anything in regards to the scene, I respect the past and the history, but I’m going to concentrate on the here and now. 

John Joseph of Cro Mags and Bloodclot has written and published a book recently. Have you had a chance to read it?
I went back to school two years ago and got hit with a bunch of Intensive Writing courses. So basically for the past few semesters it’s been The Illiad, or Paradise Lost, or Frankenstein or House Made of Dawn. And you gotta remember that I came up with all these bands and heard their viewpoints first hand. Cro Mags and Youth Of Today had a big influence on me exploring vegetarianism and the idea of a more positive self. So a lot of what is getting written about I was lucky enough to be exposed to long before it came out in a book. Nonetheless once my heavy reading for school is finished I’m gonna catch up on some of John Joseph’s books and Roger’s book.

Why do you think hardcore bands who were active in the 1980s are still popular three decades later?
Because they are timeless, often imitated never duplicated type of shit. That time and those bands had a profound impact on me and I’m sure so many other people. They kicked down a lot of doors with their musical styles and messages. I guess just everything was aligned perfectly when those bands happened, and the music that came out of it is solid and immortal.

Where does Examine fit into today’s hardcore scene in New York?
That’s something we really don’t think too much about or stress out about. We do what we do and if people don’t dig it we’re cool with that, and if they do dig it then that’s even better. A few of us could have done the whole bringing back the old band thing for some instant cred, but we all wanted to do something different with EXAMINE. We have a kind of open door policy when it comes to writing that we pretty much develop any ideas we come up without ever saying “Oh this isn’t hardcore enough” or anything like that. So I guess that’s what we bring to the scene with our music and approach, kind of pushing boundaries a bit and not getting locked into what a hardcore band “should” sound / act / think like.

Who in the band writes the lyrics and what issues do they address?
So far I’ve written all the lyrics, but we’re gonna be working on some new material that will have lyrics the other guys wrote. I write mostly personal stuff, trying to get out and express what I’m feeling at any given time. I’m a pretty peaceful guy, so when I feel that shifting I grab the pen and paper and start venting to get back to that chill state of mind. So most of the lyrics you read and hear are just me working out and dealing with shit.

How much material has the band released to date, and how well have your releases been received by the scene?
We put out our original Demo and earlier this year we dropped a full length record on Dead City Records. Right now we got a slew of new songs all in various stages of completion and are trying to determine what we’re going to do with them. Some days it’s just going to demo them out, some days it’s an EP or another full length, still unsure about it.
As far as being received by the scene I think overall it’s been positive. I haven’t had anyone tell me that they think we suck yet, but I definitely get a good vibe from people when they see us play out live or have checked out the album. And all in all we have a lot of fun with the band, and it’s always a blast playing live.

Are copies of your demo still available since its initial release?
We actually never made physical copies of the demo, but it was/is available on our Reverbnation Page for free downloading. It’s five songs that our boy Spew recorded for us.

Was your demo produced independently by the band and Spew? What sound were you looking for when putting it together?
Spew has been a great friend for years now and he built a studio in his basement. Guy knows what he is doing and offers a lot of creative input during the recording process. We weren’t really looking for a particular sound outside of “heavy”. Spew has been playing in hardcore bands for years now so he knew exactly what vibe to get.

Name the songs recorded for the demo and explain how satisfied the band was with the results?
There was Foundation, Black Blood, Cowards Die In Packs, Masked Up and Kept Sick. As far as a demo goes we were really happy with the way it came out. Spew and Mike did the mixing and it came out aces. I was of the mind set that it was just a demo and wasn’t expecting it to sound as good as it did.

How recently was your latest full length on Dead City Records released?
The full length was released early in 2018, and yes that was the first release since the demo. We we’re considering just doing an EP but we had enough material to go full boat with it. Dead City Records is run out of Westchester NY and it’s a very DIY type label. Ache, The Krays, No Redeeming Social Value. They also do a lot of merch for Sheer Terror, Murphy’s Law, Killing Time, Breakdown, Caught In A Trap, Billy Club Sandwich etc.

How much promotion has Dead City Records done for your album since it came out? How did you first hear about them?
Dead City has been great. They shoot out like a press kit type of thing to different web sites and webzines. They got the record distributed on the West Coast, Japan and Europe and they hooked up the whole digital media market for us, I-Tunes, Spotify etc.
Shonen who was the drummer in On The Offense used to play in a few bands with John from Dead City. So when OTO recorded our record we went to Dead City for advice and help and they ended up hooking us up. Then when EXAMINE was recording we spoke to Dead City and they put us on board.

Were any songs from the demo re-recorded for the album, or does it host all new material? What is the title of the album and the titles of the songs on it?
All five songs from the demo were re-recorded for the full length. Everything else on the record was new except for the Motorhead cover. The full length is self-titled. The songs on it are Everybody Dies, Foundation, Black Blood, Reina, Cowards Die In Packs, Moving Forward, Walk With Us, By Your Own Hands, Masked Up, Search, Kept Sick, and a cover of Motorhead’s Stay Clean.

What inspired you to cover Motorhead on your self-titled album? What about the song you chose spoke to the band?
Motorhead IS the inspiration haha…. I think with all the modern hardcore bands doing covers of all old school hardcore songs, we figured we’d go back a little further and cover Motorhead. Especially Stay Clean, we really like the thought behind the song of not getting to stuck on anything for too long, and living your life free of the meddling and the distractions other people try to inject into it.

How many new songs do you have completed for another release?
Somewhere in the ballpark of about seven fully completed ones. This summer we all had a lot of family and personal stuff going on, so I ended up writing a ton of new material that we’re going to start working on. We have incorporated four new songs into the set list: Make Them Suffer, Territorial, Buckshot, and Death Reaction.

How soon do you expect to begin work on your next release? Is the band looking forward to it?
We’re gonna be demo’ing some of the songs out by the end of 2018, and taking a fresh listen to them early 2019, and we’ll gauge from that what we’re going to do with them as far as putting them out. And yeah, we’re all kind of biting at the bit to get good sounding recordings of them.

Are there any labels interested in helping distribute the new release at this point?
Dead City Records has always been very supportive of us, so I’m sure whatever we drop next is going to come out through Dead City.

What kind of an impact has hardcore had on popular music, and what do you think its impact will be in the future?
I think starting back with the whole Seattle thing we could see where Hardcore was impacting music. I remember hearing Nirvana for the first time and saying “Pffft, NYHC has been doing that for years already”. And now all these like teeny pop “Hardcore” bands are all over the place except they wear like eyeliner and make up and kind of have a goth/hair band look to them. To each their own you know, but you can definitely see where hardcore has bled through and influenced a lot of what you see now. As far as the future, for better or for worse Hardcore is going to always influence “popular” music and culture. It’s like this, Hardcore is the ultimate stripped down most raw of underground music, for the most part it’s the realest. And anyone that’s ever been into music or fashion or art for commercial reasons, always digs as deep down into the underground as they can to exploit it and sell there more mainstream version of it. So hardcore is always going to inspire many, many people, for many, many different reasons. But the realest hardcore heads are always going to stay true.

Do you feel that pop punk has watered down the genre in the mainstream?
Nah. I think most people that are into Hardcore can smell Pop Punk bands from a mile away and keep clear from them. I don’t really see “Pop” seeping into and effecting Hardcore at all. And maybe there will even be a few people that get turned on to Hardcore via Pop Punk, like back in the days the kids that started off listening to metal via hairbands and eventually found their way to Slayer. 
When you see a documentary about punk and hardcore, how often do those movies miss the point and how often are they spot on?
I couldn’t really answer this because I don’t really watch documentaries about it. I appreciate why someone would make a documentary about Hardcore, but for me, I lived through some of the best years of it. So it’s kind of watching a program about something you experienced firsthand. 
If you were ever to make a documentary on punk and hardcore, what would it be like?
I never really thought about that until you sent me this question, haha. I’m totally lacking any sort of the skill sets it takes to make a film, but if I would make one I’d make it about an old rehearsal studio in Woodside Queens named “The Underground”. It was this little hole in the wall studio in the middle of like an industrial block in Woodside Queens. That was a spot where a lot of bands would jam, hang out, and check out other bands. Real laid back place where I met a lot of friends. I was in a Hardcore band named Resistance back then. Hoya from Madball and Beto from 25 Ta Life were in a band called DMIZE who we got along with practiced there. Ezec from Crown Of Thornz used to practice there with various projects, and there were bands like Fit Of Anger, couple of those guys went on to start Everybody Gets Hurt, Stand Proud, Outburst and tons of others. So we’re talking the latter half of the ‘80’s and a lot of the guys that used to practice there went on to much bigger and better things. That place was the birthplace of a lot of shared creativity from a bunch of teenagers.

What do you hope Examine’s impact on hardcore music will turn out to be? How long does the band intend to continue?
I just hope that people can relate to our music and/or our lyrics in one way or the other. Hardcore is way bigger than individual bands and it impacts us more than we’d impact it. So hopefully people will vibe with what we’re putting out there. We’re gonna continue until its stops being satisfying and enjoying to do. No one is getting rich off of Hardcore music. Even the biggest bands in the game aren’t living free and easy. They all gotta work when they come off tour, busting their asses to feed their families and pay the bills. That’s why if you’re gonna do it, you best be doing it for the love and enjoyment of it. If it ever loses that then we’ll call it quits.

-Dave Wolff