Listen to the debut album by this Scottish band (entitled "Double Self Titled EP") made me feel like I had been beaten. After finishing fifth time to listen about, I said "I have to interview this band." So, taking advantage of the good connection that I have with Jamie, guitar / voice of this bulldozer, I requested an interview. And Jamie, as cool as ever, accepted and this is what he told us about this great band that all fans of styles like Powerviolence, Crust and Noise should listen.
Puro Ruido: Hi Jamie, how everything is out there? First of all, thanks for accepting the interview
Jamie: Yeah things are going good here, just back from our last practice before recording our side of our next release. It’s a collaboration between us and a Harsh noise/Power electronics artist from Scotland called Crozier. He runs the Vile Noise netlabel, there is SO MUCH awesome stuff on there, everyone should check it out.
PR: Let’s begin. Have a new and good band band called Godhole, with which released a great album called "Self Titled Double EP". Tell us, how good was the response from the public and the press?
J: Yeah! The initial response was cool, just like 'yeah this band is heavy as fuck and a cool mix of different stuff'. But it was a little bit after the release when I started getting emails from people and stuff saying that the release had really touched them and they could identify with what it was about that was really amazing. That’s all any musician can ask for really and I think its pretty cool that even though our music is so heavy its still emotive, which is exactly what I was going for. Then we also got a pretty good review from my favorite magazine 'Zero Tolerance' who called us 'Powerviolence, with actual songs' haha! I do love a catchy chorus!
PR: Are you playing live to present the album? Have made or will make a tour to promote it?
J: Yeah we are really into playing live, we love small DIY gigs with no stage, I like to scream right in peoples faces and have them feel what I'm feeling while playing. If the band are sincere, its pretty hard not to empathise with them when its in such a closed setting. We are starting to put more and more of the noise stuff into our set aswell which is cool. Hopefully after our next release comes out we will do a VS set with Crozier. First though we are doing a bunch of gigs around Scotland then off to tour around Finland with our grindbastard brothers Cut To Fit who play brutal Pig Destroyer type grind in June.
PR: Jamie, I first met you as part of another very good group: Fifteen Dead. You still with them? Or are you only in Godhole now?
J: Ah no, Fifteen Dead has now split up, but its for the better, the band had really played itself out and we were all ready to move onto different things. I think Godhole and Rosses new band Scumpulse (everyone check them out!) are much better than Fifteen Dead. Godhole isnt all I'm doing though. My noise stuff is obviously tied up into Godhole, but I'm also doing a distorted, evil, brutal hiphop project with legendary Dirtcore Rapper from Northern Ireland, Roysta. We call it THE FEAR but as yet has not had a formal release.
PR: Godhole: Why that name? It is a strong, flashy name, but why decided to put that name to the group? There is a concept, a timely idea behind the name?
J: Haha! At Godhole HQ we are MASSIVE fans of the american tv show Its Always Sunny in Philadelphia. In it a character talks about how he feels like he has a gaping hole in his soul. A hole that most people fill with religion, but he fills with alcohol, drugs and women, he calls it his GODHOLE. So that’s really where we got it from but it does have kind of a deeper meaning in that I personally have struggled quite badly with exactly those things in the past. I have more of a handle on it now, but it doesn’t mean that those feelings are gone. I still have self destructive impulses on a daily basis but I'm much better at controlling them now.
PR: I had the opportunity to watch the video you did for the song "Glorious Rotten". I must say that is a really powerful, shocking video. What inspired you to make this video?
J: I just wanted to make something that looked like how we sound... Totally horrible. haha. There’s the obvious link in the decomposing animals to 'Rotting' but a lot of work went into the style of filming and the editing to make it as difficult to watch as possible.
PR: Jamie, also you own a record label. What can you tell us about it?
J: Yeah, it’s something I had always wanted to do and when I needed to find a way to release the Godhole EP I was like FUCK IT! I'll just do it myself! My friend Graham, the singer in Endless Swarm (amazing Powerviolence from Edinbrugh) was also needing to do the same for his band so Mind Ripper Collective was born! We have a compilation of SPAZZ covers coming out soon with most of the best powerviolence bands in the world on it soon so that should be awesome!
PR: Something that I love from the album of Godhole, is that there are 2 mutually distinct personalities. On the one hand, it is the Powerviolence/Crust/Hardcore personality. And, on the other hand, we have the Noise side of the group, as if Merzbow inherit Godhole songs and transformed them into another kind of chaos. How was that you came to create these two personalities, different but complementary to each other?
J: I have been into noise and electronic music for a long time, basically just as long as I have been into punk. I used to be in a digital hardcore band so mixing punk and electronic music isn’t anything new to me. This release ended up the way it did because I basically had the idea of re using the lyrics and sort of re imagining the songs as a whole. Its not all noise though, some of the B-side is actually really chilled out. Emerald Youngster is probably my favorite track from that side. For that song I wanted to make a song that sounded like the peace and calm immediately after death. I like the juxtaposition of QUIET/LOUD and SOFT/HARD
PR: All donations you receive with every download of the album are donated to the Scottish Association Of Mental Health. In bandcamp there is a text allowing to know why made this donation. But if you want to use this space to tell us everything necessary about that topic, feel free to do so.
J: Well really its said best on the bandcamp/insert of the release but the short version is that I lost my brother to suicide when I was 19, he was just 17. I know people always say this after people die but he really was an amazing person and he really was my best friend. It’s taken me years to get to some sort of state where I could finally make a piece of art about him that I could be happy with. That piece is GODHOLE.
PR: Well, Jamie, we nearing the end. What are the plans, immediate or otherwise, for the future of Godhole? A new album? Compose new songs? More sound experiments?
J: Yeah the next release is going to be really interesting. Obviously everyone is going to say we are copying Full of Hell. But really The Endless Blockade did it YEARS before them anyway. I’ve wanted to make something like what we are about to do for ages but its just now that I am really in a position with such creative freedom and the right people to help me do so. I can’t wait to see how it turns out. I am also having a circuit bending noise instrument maker make me a megaphone with an oscilator in it, that also links in chain with my guitar and pedals. So I can manipulate my voice using controls on the megaphone as well as all my guitar pedals, should be pretty awesome and will work great in the live show.
PR: Ok, bro, that's all. Again, thanks for the interview. If you want to add something, do it freely.
J: 'Some people never go crazy, what truely horrible lives they must lead.'