Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Interview with Rob Elliott of NECRODEMON by Dave Wolff

Interview with Rob Elliott of NECRODEMON

Necrodemon began in 1998 and have refused to follow musical trends for as long as you’ve existed as a band. How much importance has the band put into forging their own path in the world of extreme metal?
Necrodemon stand out, and do not sound the same on every song. Every album should be something to respect. Necrodemon has been misunderstood, hated, and deceived yet still stand proud and unchanged. We have always cherished the fact that this band does not follow trends. We write what we want and always will. Our lyrics are very well researched and we try to bring new and different subject matters into metal. Vocally, we have a lot of ranges in our music. We combine black, death, thrash, and other styles together. We do not just want to be a death metal band, or a black metal band, or a thrash metal band. We encompass all of it using the extremities of all those aforementioned styles.

What trends did you see around you, that you wanted the band to stay away from when you started?

We just never wanted to fall into a category or to be nailed down to one style. We also did not want to be predictable. We do not follow, we lead!

Of the genres the band drew influence from when Necrodemon formed, what bands were you most listening to? Were they local acts from your home country or larger underground bands known internationally?

We really weren't into local acts. There are and were a few good metal bands from here but mostly just rock and pop bands. Our country has produced a lot of good bands but not so much in our area. Everyone in the band has been into metal since young ages. We have all been through Iron Maiden to Morbid Angel ha ha ha! We always have been into the underground. Tape trading and mail ordering demos in the 90's was awesome. All of us listen to thrash, death metal, black metal, some heavy metal and a bit of rock and roll.

How many bands from outside Indiana and the U.S. have you met through tape trading in the 90s? How many mail order companies were you ordering from at that time? Are any of those still around?

We spoke with many bands back then. We were writing letters back and forth. Most of the companies and magazines we communicated with are gone. A few are still around or have merged into other companies or changed names.

What bands were you corresponding with in the 90s? Are most of these bands still around in 2015? Name mail order companies and magazines have managed to remain active to this day.

We spoke to Vader, Necrophobic, Pyrexia, Profanatica, and some others. Some of these bands are still around today. Metal Core magazine is the only magazine that we know is still around. Of course Century Media and Relapse are huge labels now.

How long have you been into extreme music? Is Necrodemon the first band its members were involved in, or were you all involved in other bands previously?

We all have been into the most extreme music we could ever find. The faster, the heavier, the crazier, the better! I was also in Lordes Werre and Sephiroth. Marc Bogard was also in Severing Images. Michael Oehmen used to be in Blood Coven. Necrodemon is the band that we all have been in though. We all feel the dark power with this music!

Was any material released by Lordes Werre, Sephiroth, Severing Images and Blood Coven while your band members were working with them? Were these local bands from Granger or were they from elsewhere?

All of the Lordes Werre material including music and lyrics was written by me. Most of the music for Severing Images was written by Marc Bogard. None of these bands were from Granger. They were from a few towns over. Blood Coven is from Ohio.

Is any demo or full length material from Lordes Werre, Sephiroth, Severing Images and Blood Coven still available?

Lordes Werre stuff is available from R.I.P. Records from Chicago. Blood Coven still has stuff available on their web pages. Severing Images is long gone.

Did the current lineup know one another before Necrodemon started or did you find one another searching for musicians?

This is not the original line up. I am the only original member. This is however one of the strongest line ups so far. The one member we will always miss is Chuck Feldman. He passed away in 2011.

How much had Chuck Feldman contributed to the band as a member? How do you keep his memory alive today?

Chuck was a great drummer. He contributed to the spirit of the band. He did occasionally write some lyrics and did write a bit of the music. His demeanor was unmatched! We honor Chuck's memory quite often at our shows. We also keep photos and mentions of him in our new music and on our websites. We talk about him quite often at band rehearsal.

What spoke to you and the rest of the band about Chuck’s lyrics? How often would he contribute to the band lyrically?

The couple of songs that Chuck contributed to lyrically were just special songs to us. He had a knack for finding a really dark view on everything. He contributed lyrically every now and then. It wasn't often but when he did, it was priceless!

How many clubs and independent record outlets are in your local area? As far as discovering new bands, do people where you live depend more in record stores or the internet?

People here use both stores and the Internet. The Internet is very easy to access and use for finding music, but to be honest we do prefer record stores. Physical albums are much better!

Name a few of the record outlets located in your area and discuss how up to date they are in receiving new material? Do any of the retail stores you mentioned offer any of your releases for sale?

The only real record stores in our area are: Orbit Music, Super Sounds, and FYE. Orbit was a great place to get metal in the 90's and early 2000's. Super Sounds was great in the 80's. FYE has either been hit or miss. Sometimes they have a good selection and other times they have nothing. Orbit Music has always carried Necrodemon CD's.

Who in the band researches the subject matter the lyrics are based on? What do you write about that is unique to the band?

I do 95 percent of the lyrical concepts and writing. He is occasionally given an idea for a concept for a song and then researches and writes but, usually he does all the conception and innovating. Unique to Necrodemon is the way our lyrics are worded. Each song is its own story.

Describe some of the song lyrics you has written for the band and explain how they stand out from other lyricists?

Necrodemon has covered a vast range of topics. We have sung about Death, Hauntings, Winter, Beasts, the Supernatural, War, Spirits, Horror, Hate, Rage, and many more. We believe our lyrics are very intelligent and well thought out. I will not let the lyrics become final until they are perfect. We did a concept album in 2006 which not many people do anymore.

What process do you undergo to perfect your lyrics? How do you cover the subject matter described above and make it different from other bands’ lyrics?

The lyrics are written when a story or topic reaches out to the band or becomes an obsession. When you believe in what you’re singing about, it makes for a better song and an unchallenged delivery. All types of media on a subject are then digested. Books, films, news articles, credible Internet sources, and so on.

Which major events of the past few years have you written about? What sort of news articles most interest him?

Normally the band focuses on hauntings, death, darkness, and a specific nemesis that brings these. War and hatred for Islam and ISIS are the only current events covered by our songs. All in the band hate ISIS and Islam. It is an infection on this planet.

How many demos did Necrodemon release before moving on to full length recordings? Were they released on cassette, CD or digital format? Are copies of your demos still available for trade or purchase?

We only did one demo before doing a full length. This was the "Deadly Demo 1999". This was released on cassette. Demos are still available by special order. To order one, contact the band directly.

List the songs on your debut demo and explain how they represented the band musically when it came out.

The Summoning, Rape, The Asp, Journey through the Continuum, Mechanical Death, Drop Zone. These songs were the beginning of Necrodemon. It was the transition from Lordes Werre into the new band, Necrodemon. These songs were thrashy death metal.

What was the subject matter of each song on your debut demo, and did anything in particular inspire the lyrics?

The song titles pretty much speak for themselves. Inspiration for the lyrics comes from the dark parts of my mind, books, films, and haunting stories. If anyone wants to read the lyrics they are all here:

How did the band progress in musical terms from your debut full length to your current full length? Do you prefer releasing your full length albums on CD or streaming them on social media?

The music has become darker and faster. We all have progressed on our instruments. The lyrics have become better. We enjoy releasing our music on all formats. However we can spread the plague of Necrodemon, we do it!

What has most helped the band to progress over the years? The time you have played together, the equipment you have been using to grow as musicians, or your decision to work as an independent band? Or is it a combination of all these?

The band has progressed mostly because of our dedication to the music and to real metal. Rehearsal is most important. You must practice and practice and practice again! Necrodemon has always strived to be bigger, better, and more bad ass!

How does a typical band rehearsal go? Who often offers the most input into writing and composing material? How often do you practice each week? Does the band rent studio time or have their own studio?

Band rehearsal is a few times a week. We either go to or a studio or we use ours. We do both. We do not rent a rehearsal place, we have our own. I am the main composer, lyricist, and songwriter but other members do contribute.

Discuss your first two full lengths and how they have been received by fanzines since they were made available.

Haunted Eons was the first album. It received a bit of good reviews. It is what put us on the map besides our demo. Allegiance To The End was our second album. This album was a bit of a landmark for us because it showed that Necrodemon was here to stay. It also started the forging of the "Necrodemon" sound.

Did Allegiance To The End receive as much positive reviews as Haunted Eons? How did it help establish the band’s signature sound?

Allegiance got great reviews. It is a very aggressive album. It is also the first time we had a better production. This made the music clearer. Allegiance forged the "Necrodemon" sound by showing the world that we do not follow trends and that we can do all styles of metal in one album. It also showcased our love for the old school metal, an improvement in the lyrics and music, as well as a message that Necrodemon is a dedicated band.

What gave you the idea of devising a storyline to work with for the concept album you released in 2006?

Third full length and first concept album. We focused in on the winter and the cold. From beginning to end, this album is frigid! Every song, lyric, riff, and sound effect was inspired by freezing weather conditions and all we could imagine for it. Northern Indiana gets very extreme in the winter and we let it influence us. And as a side note to all the people that talk shit about us: We did this because we wanted to and not to be like Immortal. We do not copy bands or styles we do what comes naturally. I added black metal style vocals on this release.

What is the storyline and plot development of your concept album? Who in the band first thought up the idea of a conceptual story? Are the results what the band envisioned them to be at the start?

It is a concept album of and revolving around everything cold and of the Winter. Both Rob and Chuck Feldman thought up the concept. Every song is freezing. We believe it to be a great album. It combined all types of black, thrash, and death metal. Every track is about a subject of the Cold.

Which of the songs from your current recording are your personal favorites and why?

From "Rise of the Supernatural" we all as a band love the songs, "The Terror Begins...", "Supernatural", and "Grim". Because they kick fucking METAL ass!

How aggressively has the band been promoting the current album by playing out? How is the scene in your area and which clubs are most actively supporting underground bands?

Necrodemon plays out as often as possible. The scene here is pretty small so we tend to go outside our local area. We like going to Chicago and Indianapolis.

What shows are coming up in the near future? Does the band have anything in mind music or lyric wise for the next full length?

Shows are always on our pages and here: We leave all of our next moves and ideas to be a surprise.


-Dave Wolff

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