Eradicator of All Melodies: Black Fucking Cancer track premiere + Q&A

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Many have asked: what’s in a name? In the instance of San Jose’s Black Fucking Cancer the answer is “the embodiment of their sound.” Then to really drive the point home, they called their demo Summoning Aural Hell. And it totally lives up to its name. Appropriately, Graceless Recordings, that label with more underground sway than the earth’s magnetic field, put out BFC’s Summoning Aural Hell demo on tape. In these times of pompous prose poetry promos and vulgar displays of alliteration it’s good to be accosted by a trio such as Black Fucking Cancer, who stand as an antithesis to such antics and “demo”goguery. Now, five years after successfully summoning aural hell, Black Fucking Cancer are primed to release their self-titled full length through not only Graceless but Osmose Productions, as well. Decibel caught up with the BFC guys--who, despite their name, are extremely polite and forthcoming--to find out how such a pact came to be. New track stream to follow the interview--which is fascinating. Especially the part regarding BFC's recording process. SPOILER ALERT: there’s air drumming involved!

What can fans of the demo expect from the full length?

The answer is simple. MORE! Every element and characteristic of Black Fucking Cancer has been sharpened to a precision blade. The full length record features three of the original demos songs in their fully realized incarnations as well as four newer songs from our catalog that further obliterate, deliver, and develop the cancerous destructive force that is our sound. The sound is huge, dynamic, chaotic, and relentless. While at the same time, more focused, with more precision execution, and an attention to detail.

How did the recording process for the full length go?

The recording process was actually a huge challenge for us. A big reason was because it was almost entirely done in-house, from our rehearsal space. For the demo, we had gone with a much more raw and primitive approach. All the instrumentation was recorded live, in true one take - one kill full-band takes with the vox done afterwards. This was done due to our slightly loose/improvised noise elements, our often stretching of tempos, which are extremely difficult to recreate in a studio environment, and finally the overall lack of equipment.

For the full length, we wanted to raise the bar on every level. The execution as well as the overall production. We wanted it to be all encompassing versus the rather two-dimensional sound of the demo. To achieve this we needed to be able to track separately this time to achieve a larger and more separated sound than before. This presented a huge challenge with songs like “SinnRitualVoid” with it's drawn out and loose intro. We had to recreate the live feeling separately. It was particularly difficult because the intro has no tempo, it's something you just do in the moment. The band has massive playing chemistry and it's one of those things that we can only truly do together. We basically had to reverse engineer it. Tracking guitar and bass together while J. Played air drums. To keep the separation intact. It was the only way to still get the live improvisational feel, while not playing together. The drums were recorded at a place where we play most of our local shows, the Oakland Metro. Sal Raya, the house engineer at the Oakland Metro Opera House, approached us with the idea of recording the drums with him at the venue. The venue is characterized by its high warehouse ceilings, open concrete space, it's lonnnngggg reverb tails, and slap backs. It was a very unique and excellent space for creating a very live sounding recording. A few bands have utilized this space after us, but we were the first!

After the drums were recorded, we took all takes back to our rehearsal space to build and edit from there. This is where all guitars, bass, and vocals were captured. The entire post production was done in that same room. The process was long and intensive. We wrote solos and lyrics in the studio, collaborated on building samples, song intros, and noise. All of this while having full-time jobs to report to the next morning after many long long nights. Much of the time we could only work on the record one or two days a week! This added months to the overall length of the process. However, we all feel a real proud sense of ownership over the final product. We put every essence of ourselves deep into these pieces of music. From conception to final incarnation. Despite the nearly 2 and a half year process we are glad we were able to take our time in delivering something that we truly feel represents us.

How did the deal with Osmose come about?

Bit crazy actually. We were putting together the details of the LP with Graceless and with the size of the production it became obvious that financial constraints would deem it necessary to get a co-label involved. Graceless took it upon themselves to reach out to other labels. Osmose was a bit of a shot in the dark. Sort of a "Worse they can say is fuck off" kind of thing. Much to our surprise, they responded with a ton of interest. The end result is that Osmose is releasing the Digipack CD, Graceless the tape edition, and the two combine efforts on the Double LP version. We're proud to be working with both entities. Osmose has been extremely easy to work with and are without a doubt eager to back music they love and believe in. Graceless has been behind us since essentially day one. We are extremely grateful to be able to continue to work with them as things with the band grow and progress. Their support has been invaluable in the spread of Black Fucking Cancer.

Any plans to take these new songs on the road?

Definitely. To kick it off the we are having a special album release show at the Golden Bull in Oakland California on June 25th. We are anxious to see what opportunities arise once the record hits the pavement. We are currently solidifying some dates on the west coast with long time friends Dispirit who will also be performing in support at our record release gig.

It's been five years since the demo. What's changed about/within the band since then?

Since Black Fucking Cancer's birth our goal has been to create the most uncompromising and relentless soundscapes possible and we plan to continue to do so.

June 24th will see the release of Black Fucking Cancer via Osmose and Graceless on CD and tape, respectively. Double LP to follow.

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