If you are a follower of this mighty zine…and why wouldn’t you be…you will probably know we are huge fans of everything that can be categorised as Old School Swedish Death Metal. Or SweDeath if you will. The Skogsberg-sound, Boss HM-2 Buzzsaw tone…It has so many names, but it has all the same effect on us. This time we give space to underground act REPULSIVE from the UK. Let’s start with obvious question…(Ricardo)
Can you tell us more about the formation of Repulsive? If I’m right you came up with a direction after you have moved from London to Derby. Why is it so hard to find a drummer nowadays? There are only a few in the UK, or is the style not that popular among the double-bass animals?
First of all thank you for having us on your awesome zine amongst some legendary artists. After I received my offer at the University of Derby, I networked through any musicians and metal fans I could find at the university and discovered Tom who played bass and vocals. I had a few instrumental ideas produced and Tom had a vision for an OSDM project ‘Repulsive’. A good half of my ideas matched his vision, so we collaborated our efforts and he we are! Struggling to find a drummer did put us in a position of great uncertainty due to the fact that there are indeed too few in existence and too few into this style alone. As it stands we are relying on session players. Luckily we managed to drag the hilarious and awesome Stephen (Pteroglyph, Slaughter Throne) all the way from Leeds to perform with us for a debut gig!
Tell us more about the recording process of your debut demo. The songs which are on it, are they written by you or is it a group effort? Why have you chosen to cover Morbid Angel’s “Immortal Rites” of the mighty “Altars of Madness” album? Do you have other covers in mind to give it a crusty and repulsive twist?
Our debut demo isn’t an official release per se, but a simple online medium by which listeners can obtain and enjoy our songs (FREE OF CHARGE). They were all produced on our personal computers. The songwriting is a mix of our efforts. ‘The Entity’ is an old idea entirely composed by myself [Vash], where as the other two originals hold contributions from all of us. ‘Immortal Rites’ was a choice me and Tom made as we wanted a cover not only to market ourselves but to make a cool and interesting rendition whilst retaining the aesthetics of the original. As for any other covers, we will wait to see as it’s not currently our priority.
What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music? Just the simple slash and gore or does Repulsive has a message?
The simple ‘slash & gore’ is certainly something we include as we enjoy that stuff and it greatly suits our sound. That however isn’t my forte so I leave those lyrics to Tom who does a brilliant job. (I’m too much of a pussy to watch the kind of films he watches haha.) My writing leans towards spiritual and demonic hocus pocus. I’m not going to go into too much detail but to summarise, The Entity is about my accounts of Sleep Paralysis which I’m sure anyone can relate to how terrifying an experience it is.
Your first demo got a raving review in our zine. And it seems others like it as well. Still, you mentioned this demo as a semi-non-formal release. You consider it more as a bedroom-project. But I assume you’re pleased with the attention it got, for a simple non-formal release on the internet? If you look back at it, what would you change to enhance sound or quality of the demo?
Thank you very much! I look forward to reading this review. We are extremely pleased with the reception it had and we’re optimistic for what the future holds. I would still consider the demo as the product of a bedroom project as that’s literally what it is. Of course we are blessed with the production skills and resources which allowed us to produce and showcase our material to an enjoyable standard. That does not mean to say I’m satisfied with the production quality. Virtual drums and amplification will always sound kack as opposed to the real thing, and it is difficult to mix to an optimal standard in an acoustically untreated environment. Because of this, we decided to offer these substandard quality tracks free of charge to our audience. There will be no compromise on quality for any official release. Production will take place in a studio with real amplification, real drums and be produced in a suitable environment.
After my shameless online promotion for the Fleshcrawl “Descend into the Absurd” article, written by Marcin of Panzerfaust zine / Compilation of Death zine which was featured in our second issue, you replied that the album was a huge inspiration to form Repulsive. Can you tell us more about your admiration for that particular album? Are there other uncommon SweDeath albums you consider as an influence for Repulsive? What does SweDeath means to you? Are you a collector yourself?
Not necessarily to form Repulsive and not just that particular album, but Fleshcrawl in general have been a big influence in my writing style for Repulsive. I would consider them one of (if not,) the most comparable band to us in terms of our sound as well as Entrails and Bloodbath. Like them, we have taken equal influence from the founding fathers of SweDeath. Whilst that is the general sound we achieve, we consider all forms of extreme metal as influence and not just Swedeath. I personally am more into my firey Morbid Angel-esque style DM including bands such as AngelCorpse, Spearhead, Centurian etc, so I like to throw that in the saucepan. On the topic of uncommon albums, a long forgotten 90s band I discovered to have originated in my hometown of Croydon known as ‘Decomposed’ released the (first Candlelight Record’s) album ‘Hope Finally Died’ which is a hugely underrated gem, and I implore anyone who likes their Death Metal with a hint of Autopsy/MyDyingBride doom to listen to it. Otherwise, anything by Vallenfyre is a win and a huge influence. Classics wise, Carnage’s Dark Recollections, Wombbath’s ICT and God-Macabre’s Winterlong come to mind. What’s special about Swedeath is the tone alone conveys a sense of slow rot and decay. Speed up the pace and you’ve got a chainsaw delivering graphic splatter gore without the need of a visual element. Swedeath is essentially the absolute unadulterated epitome of Death Metal.
What are the future plans for Repulsive? Gigs, releasing new material etc.? Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future. Keep on doing the SweDeath thing and take it to a higher level or more the Edge of Sanity direction?
Gigging is certainly a plan. We performed our debut gig in Nottingham last Saturday (11th July 2015) opening for Warlord and we were amazed by the incredible reception we had not only as the first band but first gig ever! Video footage is available to enjoy on our Youtube/Facebook. We will be hitting the road again in August for a 3 date weekender in the South England with the homeboys Anoxide and Annunciation, and with another drummer who we will reveal in due time. There is hot new material we have included in our live set-list so there’s another reason to come see us live. We will hold back on releasing anymore tracks until we produce an official release which will also be provided in physical format. As well as producing more music, the objectives of this band include performing live internationally. As for our stylistic direction, I cannot comment to say whether we will sound the same in the future or whether things will be different. Rest assured, we won’t be doing an ‘Illud Divinum’.
Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Once again thank you for featuring Repulsive in your zine. It’s been a pleasure answering your questions. To your readers, check out Repulsive on our facebook and Bandcamp! Cheers!