martes, 11 de febrero de 2014

Interview with Hellbastard

There are many bands that I admire and follow for years. But there are bands I love for many reasons. Hellbastard is one of them, and the reasons are varied, but are related to their integrity, their history, their humility, and, above all, their music. Therefore, and because I wanted to know what they are doing as a band right now, send them a private message (to their facebook account), which was answered by Scruff immediately. And well, here is the interview with Hellbastard, a band that i love.

Puro Ruido: Hello! How is everything there? It is a pleasure to interview one of the most important bands in the history of Crust......
Scruff - Hello Juan, thankyou for your kind words, they mean a lot. I don't know if we are "important" though ! We're just the regular guys that piss and shit like everyone else. All WE do is hit some bits of metal and wood and skins because we're still angry and still have things to shout off about. Right now we live in a county in the South West of the UK that has parts of it that is extremely flooded, the government response has been minimal. It's truly awakened a lot of people to the ends that government will go to stick to an agenda in an age of extreme unemployment, poverty and climate change. Here in the UK we are experiencing job losses, ever expanding 'security' laws and massive control of the populace. We have CCTV on almost every street corner, the "Gagging" law has just been passed in central government, this means that now it is considered a 'criminal act' to protest in a crowd, even peacefully. Everything here is not looking so good,...

PR: Recently we could see the new video, a preview of what will be the new album of Hellbastard. By the way, "Engineering Human Consciousness - The removal of Intelligentsia in a Machievellian Society" (parts 1 & 2), it seems to me a fucking masterpiece. Question obliged: Do you have a release date for the new Hellbastard’s album?
Scruff - No we do not, the track you heard is ONE track we recorded in August 2013 after playing a show 'near' to where the studio was. We are actually STILL writing the new album, we have never once said we have a new album finished and ready to go,.... we are taking our time with this one,... we want it to truly represent how we are live these days,... it'll be ready when it's ready,... so to speak !

PR: Let's make a little history. What do you feel when you see Crust, style to which you gave it a name, is so popular today, with bands appearing all over the planet. In 1986, when you recorded "Ripper Crust", imagined that Crust Punk would be so respected, and that in the 21st century there would be so many bands doing this kind of music?
Scruff - Well, firstly we never labelled ourselves "crust" or anything else for that matter. We were 3 kids from depression families that liked Punk Rock and Discharge, Motorhead , Hellhammer, Venom and Crass. We were never like "...Oh!! we are THIS kind of band" or "we are THAT kind of band...." we just did what we did, on other people's equipment usually. I/we do not like labelling ourselves at all. The rule IS = there are NO rules. We don't pay too much attention to what other bands are doing, or calling themselves. We are too busy trying to get our own shit done. Fashion comes and goes,... most of these so-called "crust" bands were probably "grunge" bands in the 90's and then metal bands in the noughties when it became 'popular' again. Fuck trends and fuck fashion and most importantly FUCK labels.

PR: Looking for information about other members of the band, only I could find the following thing: Peter, you play, or you played in Blood Of Ash, a powerful band of Death / Thrash who last year released a good EP...." . Still with the band, or just playing with Hellbastard?
Pete- Hi there, I am no longer with Blood Of Ash, I just play in Hellbastard now. B.O.A did two cd's and quite a few shows,.... it was a great time and I wish all the best to the guys from that band,... I had enjoyed Hellbastard's music for many many years before getting the chance to join the band. We are all pretty much music lovers in one way or another and it really does show. I think the next (new 2014) album will open many people's eyes to what this band can actually achieve.

PR: I'd like to know something about Nathan & Laine,... past, as has been to me really difficult to get information about you. Have played in other bands before joining Hellbastard?Laine – I’ve been gigging and touring in bands for the last 10 years in different bands. My main other band is called Daedalus’ Right Eye, we are a alt rock/ pop punk concept band. We write our songs based on a complex story we have written surrounding the imagination of a girl as she battles with good and evil inside of her head, which is set in a Steampunk theme. We slowly formed from late 2007, we are a labour of love instead of a get famous quick affair. It also helps that we are a band of best friends. I guess you want to know how I became associated with the band is miscreants, I joined Hellbastard as the sound engineer back in December 2011 when I engineered the “Sons of Bitches” EP at Pitchfork Rebellion Studios. As I know very little about metal etc I didn’t realise the ‘grandeur’ of the band, so when Scruff said ‘you want to be our engineer? We’ve got a few gigs coming up’, I said ‘yeah sure’. Thinking it would be a few gigs down the road in a small venue, Scruff said ‘the first one is in Montreal and the second in Maryland Baltimore’, I jumped at the chance. Then after a mishap with the old bassist Paul a week before we played Belgium (August 2012) I had to learn a full set in just a few hours. So when Paul decided to leave it seemed to be a natural progression for me to join. I’m hoping to bring a different feel to the Hellbastard engine, keep things fresh and adding to the sound.

Nathan - Well, I've only been drumming for 6 years. Me and a couple of mates started up a band called Sockmakers when I got my first kit, but the band is more of a jam / practice band, used to write (what we feel is) good music and play to the limit of our abilities and beyond. I'm still drumming for them, but I joined Hellbastard in December 2012 looking for new experiences and the chance to play kick ass music
PR: One of the things I admire about Hellbastard is commitment with the ideas exposed through songs. It has been almost three decades since the birth of the group, never abandoned your ideals. That leads me to ask: what is the percentage of importance of lyrics in Hellbastard?Scruff - It is vital. It is 100%. We never set out to BE political, I just cannot stand lyrics that have no meaning, no substance. I can't stand THAT and I can't stand it when bands play it 'safe' all the time. All that amounts to is safety-rock. It's boring and a real misnomer. Saying this, I also cannot stand it when all band does is preach! preach! preach! - it is a turn - off. You do what you Do because you wanna DO it,... simple.

PR: Talking about the lyrics, you have been warned for decades about the consequences that entail the capitalism, religious fanaticism, wars and other things related to all this. What do you feel to see that today, in 2014, may continue to write about the same topics, as almost nothing has changed, or, in any case, has worsened?
Scruff - Exactly, it has gotten worse worldwide. Protest songs are easy to write, it is whether or not anyone actually listens that makes it valid.

PR: On your website there is a sentence I really love: OLDER, WISER & ANGRIER. What is the fuel that drives you to sound in that way, getting heavier, more angry, and, of course, getting better?Laine – I think throughout the years of Hellbastard, the song/lyric writing process has been refined and grown up as such. Since knowing Scruff I’ve found that he articulates what he wants to say in a more concise manner, using clever wording to draw in the listener. Since being with the band in different forms, I think the message has been more about opening the peoples eyes to what is happening to us. Which I believe is slowly happening, judging by current world events.

Scruff - Laine pretty much said it all there.
PR: One word, and you tell me your opinions: Religion. What do you feel when someone with a full belly, a comfortable life and a wealthy social position, has the audacity to talk about poverty, misery and and that, interposing the damn religion amidst all this?Scruff - We all know religion is control. It is an insane indictment of the madness of humanity. I can certainly do without it. It is indeed the epitome of hypocrisy and injustice. It spreads evil and death. We don't need it.

PR: What was the reason why Hellbastard separated in 1992? And was what made the bastards back to the streets in 2008?Scruff: We get asked this question a lot. It happened, and that's it. In short we had no label support, we'd lost members and lost basically everything. I got angry AND bored and moved almost 500 miles to form a new band (Nero Circus), then other bands, always touring and releasing albums,...... Sidewinder, Heavy Water, The Dischargers, Moodhoover,..... King Fuel...... then 2008 come along and WHACK ! I reformed the band and the album "The need to kill,...." was born.

PR: Let's talk about the new record. It will be released by Selfmadegod, like "The Need To Kill" and "Sons of Bitches"?Scruff - "There's so many fucking bands out there, and 90% of them talk a LOAD OF SHIT. How the fuck could we NOT reform? Earth and its cohabitants were crying out for something 'real'. I don't know about you - but i'm SICK-to-FUCKING-death of boring bands that have fuck ALL to say...." From reforming Hellbastard in 2008 to the present day we have released -

1) The Need To Kill - Rage murder and retaliations,....the rise of the working classes) LP/ (Coloured Vinyls). 2) The Need To Kill - Rage murder and retaliations,....the rise of the working classes) CD. 3) Eco-War CD EP. (Plus limited amounts of 'white-label' promo cd issues exist,..) 4) Hellbastard/Dissent Split 7" Clear Vinyl EP. 5) Hellbastard/Dresden Split 12" Coloured Vinyl EP. 6) Sons Of Bitches CD EP. 7) Sons Of Bitches LP (Various coloured vinyls) 8) Sons Of Bitches White Label Test Pressings with free embroidered patch & special silk screened cover. (Only 35 copies in existence). 9) A 2008 Re-release of debut cassette demo Ripper Crust (1986)....(LP Coloured Vinyl) with silver sleeve & poster and special stuff. (Re-released with GOLD sleeve later on). The first 're-release' of this was in 1993 and was pressed on purple vinyl and the label was called "Grindcrust Records". A mate of mine (Ben Moody) ran the whole operation and he is dead now,....... All hail Ben. 10) Official Video for the track "Pylons II" 11) Official Video for the track "Cheyne Stoking..." 12) Official Video for the track "Sea Shepherd" 13) Official Video for the track "Fir Bolg-Bow to Slough feg" 14) Official Video for the track "Arcadia.." 15) Official Video for the track "Engineering Human Consciousness-The removal of Intelligentsia in a Machievellian Society" (parts 1&2). 16) Official Teaser trailer for the split Hellbastard/Dresden 12". 17) Official Teaser trailer for the "Sons Of Bitches" CD EP. 18) Endless touring around the world & sporadic appearances in various countries.

I think our sound has developed all on its' own over the years. I still use exactly the same gear now as I was using years ago,.. we are just very technically competent now. The NEW album is still being written, we have like 7 songs for it,... we need at least 14 and then pick the best 12 or so. There is no definate label to release the new album yet. We keep getting offers from various record labels, so we will see.

PR: Well, let's ending. There are chances to see you in South America for the upcoming tour?Scruff - All we need to do is meet the right 'promoter' who can organise a tour for us over there and we would come and play. It's not about the money or cash,... it's about playing our songs to those dedicated people who enjoy what we do and the messages we have.

PR: Ok, I think this is it. Of course, as a fan of the group, I must thank you for this opportunity, for me, is an honor to interview one of the most honest and powerful bands on the planet. Want to add something to your Latino fans?Scruff - Laine - Pete - Nathan - Thankyou for giving us an interview and allowing some Latino fans to get the chance to read our answers to your questions. We WILL get over there one day, all we need to do is meet the right 'promoter' who can organise a tour for us,... We'd LOVE to come and play there for you all ! Thanks for reading,... keep on keeping on ! Cheers. Hellbastard.

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