Selling out... of all their cassettes, that is. Crazy, right? I mean, when you make 100 white cassettes and 100 red cassettes, there's no way you expect to sell all (er... drop the zero, carry the...) two hundred of them! So Vampire wised up and ordered 100 more black cassettes of their demented lo-fi thrash death, and you'll never guess what happened next. (Shut up, I said you wouldn't guess it.) They sold out! So why are we hyping a band whose physical product you can't possibly put your paws on? Because:
- They rule so fucking hard, that's why.
- Albert told me to, and I do everything Albert says that doesn't involve turning something in on time.
- You can still hear/buy their shit at their Bandcamp site.
Go on. In all, it's less than ten minutes of hair-flailing ear pain. If you missed the link above, I said you can visit their site here. Or, if you're too lazy to follow either of those links, click here. Ha! Gotcha! See what I did there?
And you can read up about the band in the interview right here on the Deciblog! 'Cause Albert told you to!
How long have Vampire members been playing music together?
Me and Black String got together and started making music without a clear idea of what we wanted to achieve around 2009. We spent a year or two downing beers and switching instruments before Command came along. I can actually give the exact date when we realized our aim with VAMPIRE. It was the 3rd of July 2011. We pre-loaded for the Slayer/Metallica gig at my place and listened to the Necrophagia song “Young Burial” off the New Renaissance sampler “Thrash Metal Attack”. We looked at each other and said “This is it” (“Young Burial” is an impossibly ugly song). Then we quite instantly found our sound and started writing the songs that are on the demo/7”.
What are some albums that got you excited to play this style of music?
I would say the definitive dark death metal album that got me seriously hooked on this was Necrophagia “Holocausto de la morte” (1997). So incredibly out of its time, yet superior in both song writing and production compared to ALL death metal released during the second half of the 90’s. The sound creeps all over you like a swarm of vermin and the riffing communicates a level of sickness too often non-existent in death metal post-“Wolverine blues”. As everyone should know, Phil Anselmo of Pantera wrote most of the album and plays all guitars (credited as Anton Crowley). Amazing work.
Honorable mentions: first two Autopsy [records], everything by Possessed, first two Sarcófago, last Repugnant demo, first Entombed… You could probably hear it all in there somewhere.
Is there any current music that you feel Vampire is reacting against with its sound?
Anything auto-tuned and click-tracked with thick guitars, regardless of genre. Most metal that sounds modern sounds like shit. It’s not that we really are paying attention to it and want to address a heartfelt problem, but we play the sort of music we would like to check out ourselves down at the club.
Why did you choose to release these 3 relatively short songs on cassette?
First and foremost because we couldn’t imagine releasing a cd. Then again, releasing a 7” out of the blue didn’t feel very accurate either. Releasing a cassette demo is a good and honorable way of saying “hello, we exist”, without making too much of a fuzz about it. This idea was of course ruined rather soon, as the demo immediately sold hundreds of copies and got hyped beyond all possible reason.
How much has Vampire played live? What types of venues, and with what other bands have you played?
We have played live two times, both of those with the thrash metal band Antichrist (Swe). First gig was at some weird Danish crust lair in the outskirts of Copenhagen, and second gig was a your typical “seedy pizza shop turned into metal club every first Saturday night of the month” hellhole in Linköping, Sweden. We have more of those coming up. Playing live is fun and gets your blood running a bit faster than in the rehearsal room.
You sound like you're having a great time playing this music. Can you talk about how playing Vampire music affects you?
I think you’re right, yes. Whenever we strike the right tone there is this weird element of humor in our music, at least between the three of us. I don’t know about other bands and I’m not sure people know what we are getting at here. Hard to explain. Look, if you listen to the second Possessed album, in the first song the drumming is absolutely OUTRAGEOUS. It’s not that you look down upon it when listening to it, it’s not silly, you enjoy it, but there is this rather primitive humor in the experience. Same thing with much old metal music, even though you get very much of it in Possessed in particular.
Whenever we are happy with a song, it’s not the feeling of “Wooow… this is sophisticated art”, but rather “Ha! That sounds fucking weird in a good way”. I HOPE other death metal musicians understand what I am talking about now. If not, we are a dying breed. Death metal should be composed with good spirits. (This is something I can find loads of in a very “true” band, like Face of Evil, as well.)
Is Vampire's musical/lyrical direction have non-musical influences as well?
Sure. As the main lyricist of the band I draw much inspiration from horror fiction. That is not to say that everyone in the band is a horror maniac. But for myself, I would argue my love of horror movies is older than my love of death metal. To make matters more complex, good horror film is all about the music, which is something I recognized relatively late in life. You cannot underestimate the impact of gruesome images combined with sweet tunes. Thus, from the top of my head – five horror movies with great music in them:
Let’s Scare Jessica to Death: Amazing low budget flick with slightly confusing story line. Seriously haunting soundtrack and hot actresses. Makes you want to go sightseeing on the American countryside.
Ju-On (first 3 Japanese films and 1st American one): Sliced up chronology, comfortingly low pace and seriously eerie atmosphere. The remake is not bad at all (which goes for Ringu as well btw). People who don’t think so are purist idiots with bad taste.
The Beyond: The death metal cliché of all death metal clichés, but you can’t beat the sheer sentimental impact of the storyline, soundtrack and ending. Some people dislike the fragmented line of events and illogical development, but that’s all about how you chose to experience it, I guess. Apparently the whole zombie thing was just something they threw in at the very last minute due to a rising zombie trend in Germany while making the film. It makes this one a kind of “best of” Italian horror cinema.
Jenifer: Rather a TV series episode than a movie, as part of the less than thrilling Masters of Horror (except for the brilliant Imprint of course). Sexually disturbing and with a splendid circle composition in the good old comic book tradition, which makes sense when you consider the fact that it is based on an old comic strip. Good stuff.
A Tale of Two Sisters: Fucks you up big time first time you see it. Grows on you and appears to be the most well-crafted horror film of the decade at second and third run. Look out for raving ’00 aesthetics in the intro, with the creepy crawling wall-paper with flowers and stuff. Probably the best Asian horror film ever.
You've clearly sold out of the cassettes quickly. Did you expect that kind of response to the music?
No. Who would? Hopefully people listen to it, and don’t just put it in a shelf somewhere.
What are your hopes/goals for the band for the near future?
Find a record label that understands what we are doing and that are interested in helping us out. We are no strangers to making money for other people, as long as they leave what little we treasure in this business the fuck alone.