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Posts Tagged ‘death metal

Richard Weeks (Blackened Death Records)

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The label feature is back after a short gap. This time around, the label in focus Blackened Death Records from UK. The label was started by Richard Weeks a couple years ago and in a short time has put out some killer black and death metal releases.

Find out more about the origins of the label, change in bands & customers and upcoming releases in my interview with Richard below.

Hi Richard, you started Blackened Death Records in 2015. How did you decide to start a label? Why did you decide to start a label that releases only extreme metal music?

I started Blackened Death for a very selfish reason – to self-publish my own music. I started my first band, Carnivorous Forest, in 2012 and the first demos were very rough. After a few years and very little interest in my projects, I opted to start self-publishing my music. And Blackened Death was born.

Your first release was Carnivorous Forest – Necromancy. How did the release come about?

I wanted to do a cover album of extreme metal songs reinterpreted in a dark folk style. At the same time I was recording the album I came up with the idea to do my own label. It was only fitting Necromancy was our first release.

What have been the most memorable releases on your label so far?

The first two Hammer Smashed Faith compilations were incredible to work on. I got to work with some of my favourite artists like Thrawsunblat, SIG:AR:TYR, Toehider, and Chthe’ilist. We have also just released a giant 74 track album called Noise Against Racism which is almost 9 hours long. Very proud of that album and all the acts behind it spreading the same message.

What is the biggest problem that you faced so far in running the label?

One of the big issues I deal with daily is people trying to scam me. I get emails daily asking me to send /physical copies only/ to such and such zine. I also get a lot of so called labels asking me to pay them 80 euros a track to get put on their “cover mount CD” to magazines that do not exist. BDR doesn’t make a lot of money and the money we make goes right back into the label. When someone tries to take advantage of me or my bands, I see fucking red.

What kind of marketing do you do?

To be honest, we don’t do a lot of marketing. We have our social network presence and beyond an occasional Facebook ad, we just work on word of mouth. I think it’s the most honest way of doing business. I like getting involved with the community. I don’t like saying we have “fans” – we have friends and family.

What changes have you noticed in bands/customers in the past decade?

Changes in bands. A lot of underground bands are literally out there breaking their necks to entertain the fans. When you see a small band do a month long tour where they pay for /everything/ themselves just to satisfy the fans, I think that is amazing. In 2017 there are more underground bands than ever and finding your niche can be hard. I have maximum respect for small bands who do it all themselves.

As for changes in customers. I think a lot of them know about the struggles of small bands. Seeing fans buy directly from bands is awesome. Seeing a band get 100% of what they deserve is the absolute best.

What do you look for in a band before you sign them to your label?

I look for honesty and passion. I sign bands who I think deserve some attention. I don’t look for “bands that will push product” or “bands that will hit the charts”. I see a lot of small bands out there who work their asses off and get nothing out of it. If I can get ears and eyes pointed in their direction… that is why I do this.

Have you been in a band? What instrument do you play?

I am in many, many bands. The aforementioned Carnivorous Forest, Suicide Wraith, The Meads of Asphodel… and many more. I have found in the current day and age, you have to have as many skills as you can. So originally a guitarist and vocalist, I have taught myself how to play bass, keyboards, how to layout an album, how to mix and master, how to EQ, how to promote, how to do almost everything myself. I have learned a lot of lessons and earned a lot of skills that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Do you have any advice for those planning to start a metal music record label?

My advice is to /just do it/. If you have a passion for something, do it. Just realise that not everyone is going to be Iron Maiden or Metallica – you are gonna have to do as much on your own as possible. Learn other instruments, learn art, learn PR, just /assume/ you will need these skills at some point. Never stop learning new skills.

What are the upcoming releases from your label?

We have a number of exciting releases coming up soon. A huge grind / crust / death metal / punk compilation called “Grinding Aural Torture” and the three way split between Suicide Wraith / Uncanny Reality / Necrolytic Goat Converter is going to be killer.

 

Written by trendcrusher

December 19, 2017 at 11:40 pm

Roy Dipankar (Royville Productions)

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In the past decade, there have been quite a few documentaries focusing on metal music. My personal favourite has been Metal: A headbanger’s journey. Closer home, the few documentaries I seen have been college projects.

Last week I came across a crowdfunding video by film maker Roy Dipankar his documentary, Extreme Nation. This first of it’s kind, it will not only feature the metal scene in India but also neighbouring countries like Pakistan, Sri lanka and Bangladesh.

Find out more about Extreme Nation, the challenges that Roy has faced so far and his plans for the coming months in the interview below.

Photo by Kabir Ahmed

Hi Roy, for those familiar with you please introduce yourself. How did you get into filmmaking?

As far as I remember, I have been associated with producing & promoting music and film content; both independent and mainstream, as an oft non-conforming, artistically debauch A&R (artist & repertoire) and a compulsive anthropologist.
I also curate film festivals and screenings throughout the year for independent cinema and try to make films that convey compelling stories of our times, that need to be told. I am gradually getting in to the foray of fiction.

How did the idea for Extreme Nation come about?

I had always felt for the need to have quality documentation of a show, an interview or a music video in extreme metal music. I am talking in terms of Indian and Asian countries. Most of the information or coverage has been scattered, kind of disorganised.

Filming for Extreme Nation began at the Trendslaughter gig in Bangalore on February 2014. What I had in mind was a docudrama of sorts that would be part documentary, part fiction. This was the initial seed. However as my horizons expanded from city to city, town to town, country to country – I believe there was enough of amazing already happening with real people and events. Hence since late 2013 to now – Extreme Nation has developed to be quite a unique story!

Metal from the Indian subcontinent has it’s own flavor. Though the seed was laid in the west, metal music has gradually metamorphosed into a monster of it’s own kind. Metal music from India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Nepal through it’s various sub-genres, avenues and initiators carry their own story that is akin to the region. We are telling our tales through the eyes and tongue of a leviathan spawned out of our own backyard.

How do you select the bands that feature in the documentary?

Bands and individuals who feature in the film range from old school initiators to current violators of what accounts for blind human faith, mundane routine and beyond the ordinary. Music that is outrageous, boisterous, that defies authority, questions rules, proclaims of all & most things forbidden, through ill art. This film is not just about music or art alone but also about the people of the subcontinent and their inter-relations. That makes an interesting premise.

What is the biggest problem that you faced so far?

Financial constraints and mobility to countries like Bangladesh and Pakistan. Hence sometimes accessibility was a major concern, though I’ve overcome that through technology, networking and a handful of trustworthy individuals.

What are the memorable moments so far? Any funny incidents?

There are many in fact. Missing flights, drunk interviews, head of a metal maniac striking the camera, Hair getting stuck in a tripod, etc. Also once when a band member showed me what he calls a ‘mini horns up’, that was indeed extremely funny.

Tell us more about the crowdfunding project you have started.

This story has been initiated by me but the ultimate resource seemed clear as more and more people contacted me over the last few months in terms of support. Crowdfunding, hopefully will help finance the completion of the film and also involve a mass movement which is exactly what this film deserves.

This is not just a rockumentary highlighting metal musicians in their elements, but also showcases the characters’ personal relationships with a volatile subcontinent steeped in geo-political strife & constant power conflicts.

So this film is important not just for metal heads, or music lovers but as well for those who possess active interest in the political, historical, sociological & ethnographic affairs of the subcontinent and the world at large. It is a fun ride through captivating stories, revelant gigs, places, band and their concepts of the past and present in the extreme underground.

What are your plans for the coming months?

To complete Extreme Nation and apply for festival premieres across. I am also working on the pre-production of a short film; it will be hybrid cinema with mix-media involved (there will be music, though not metal). This short film will try and lay the foundation for a feature film in the making. All I can say right now is that it will be “a psychedelic experience from the underbelly laced with vitriol laden social comment”.‎

Thanks for answering all our questions. Do you have any final words?

You are welcome! I can only ask for more and more support towards documentary films and of course the best way to do so is begin with my film. This will only help me to bring one unique ethnographic film out of India to you.

Contribute to crowdfunding campaign on Wishberry

Written by trendcrusher

October 29, 2017 at 9:52 pm

Gutslit

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I first heard Gutslit when they started out in 2007 and they have come a long way in the past decade. The band has released 2 albums and toured Europe multiple times despite line up changes. Their second album Amputheatre via Transcending Obscurity records is out now and it sounds great. The album is huge leap ahead of their previous album Skewered in The Sewer with regards to songwriting and production.

Read my interview with bassist Gurdip Singh Narag on the Everyday hate blog

Written by trendcrusher

October 20, 2017 at 1:32 pm

Nervecell

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Nervecell are stalwarts of the Middle East metal scene. The UAE based death metal band have released 2 full length albums, toured across Europe and performed alongside legendary metal acts like Metallica and recently Nile.

Next week the band release their third album Past, Present…Torture via Lifeforce Records (US/Europe) and Metal East Records (Middle East). The band have premiered 3 tracks from the album so far, a peek into their heaviest material yet. A few listens of the album was all it took for me to get convinced that Nervecell had topped their previous album Pscyhogencide.

I spoke to guitarist Barney Ribeiro about Past, Present…Torture, death metal in 2017 and also performing in India.

Read my interview on Transcending Obscurity

Written by trendcrusher

August 17, 2017 at 11:01 am

Psycroptic

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Death metal band Psycroptic are one of the well known extreme metal acts from Australia. They have made a mark with their 6 full length albums, the latest one self titled was released in 2015. This month the band embark on their first tour of India, covered 7 cities across the country.

I spoke to drummer Dave Haley about touring in Europe and North America, their upcoming album and also what to expect from their India tour.

Read my interview on Transcending Obscurity

Written by trendcrusher

August 1, 2017 at 11:23 am

Drug Honkey

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Drug Honkey are a doom quartet from Chicago. The band play a unique mix of doom and death metal and have released 4 full length albums since forming in 1999.

A couple months ago they released their latest album, Cloak of Skies via Transcending Obscurity Records. I spoke to guitarist Hobbs about the album, guest features and more.

Read the interview on Nine Circles

 

 

Written by trendcrusher

July 20, 2017 at 1:44 pm

Cenotaph

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Cenotaph are veterans of the Turkish metal scene. Vocalist Batu is the only original member of the band and has kept the band going through multiple lineup changes. Earlier this month, they released their latest album, Perverse Dehumanized Dysfunctions; after multiple listens I can testify that this is their best release yet.

I spoke to Batu about their first album in 7 years, the Turkish metal scene and also their upcoming European tour.

Read my interview on Transcending Obscurity

 

Written by trendcrusher

June 28, 2017 at 6:14 pm