Exclusive

EXCLUSIVE: I STARED INTO THE FOREST interview

We conducted an interview with Brasov, Romania grindcore/hardcore/screamo band I STARED INTO THE FOREST on February 11, 2012.

Hey there. Thanks for your time. Please introduce yourself.

Bogdan:

Hi, I’m Bogdan, I play guitar.

Adrian:

Adrian- icecream.

Andrei:

Hello, I’m Andrei, I play bass.

Your music is a blend of different hardcore styles with hints of grindcore, mathcore and screamo. Where are you heading with your music. Have you been always writing in your current genre?

Bogdan:

Screamo has always been a big part of what we wanted to do with this band. We were all big fans of bands like ORCHID and PG.99 when we started. Also metallic hardcore like older CONVERGE and the early mathcore bands. In some ways our EP ended up sounding more metal than we wanted, we’re probably going to fix that in the next one. I think the new record is also going to be a bit more melodic in some ways. For the longest time I’ve played variations of hardcore and grindcore so I guess I was never that far from what we’re doing now.

Andrei:

I think everyone “carries” his own influences and musical preferences with him when in a band and all of that makes its way into the sound, either consciously or unconsciously. When we’re writing a new song, usually it’s Bog and me coming up with guitar riffs that we put together like when solving a puzzle and then re-write the parts until we’re all happy about it. But when I’m writing a riff for example, I might have a rough idea what should be next, but all I do is play with the guitar until I find something that feels “right”. In terms of where we’re heading, I guess we’ll find out, wouldn’t want to spoil the surprise for anyone (ourselves included).

Are you planning to take advantage of the TOUCHE AMORE hype and go bigger with your band? [laughs]

Adrian:

Hahaha. I don’t know about taking advantage of it but I sure do like listening to them.

Bogdan:

Yes, our plan is to have a record deal with Sony by 2013. Hope you’ll put in a good word for us.

Andrei:

Sony? Not unless they endorse us for some I STARED INTO THE FOREST special edition Playstation 1.

What have been some of the highlights of 2011 for the band?

Bogdan:

2011 was great, we had our first tour and our first record. Playing with TRIAL was really cool since I’ve been a fan of theirs for a long time, but I was a also a little bummed they didn’t play any of the older songs. We’ve also changed our vocalist and drummer in 2011 which is a pretty big thing.

Adrian:

I guess the tour was the coolest thing for me, plus playing with TRIAL and releasing the EP.

Andrei:

For me, having never played bass before and being used to the guitar, one of the highlights was learning to play our songs on bass in… two weeks (I think?) before we had our next concert, that was quite fun. But probably recording Society Discontinued and launching it ourselves, DIY, means the most to me.

As we know literally nothing about it, please introduce the Romanian hardcore scene for us. Are there any bands that you’re hyped about?

Adrian:

There isn’t much of a hardcore scene in Romania, but there are people who are making a difference in Romania like Gluga Neagra aka Black Hood Society (Timisoara), BHCB (Cluj, Bucuresti), T.B.C. (Cluj), Illegal Operations (Sibiu). I personally dig what Mediocracy, El Cabraret and STUCK IN A RUT are doing, also PAVILIONUL 32 (not so active at the moment). Oh, and let’s not forget COINS AS PORTRAITS.

How’s the thing with Fading Halo Records going?

Adrian:

Well, we kind of are Fading Halo Records. It’s our label which we started this summer, because we wanted to take promoting and everything else in our own hands. Even though there aren’t many Romanian hardcore related records released every year, I consider more people should hear about them. Especially if they are also free.

How do you manifest your DIY ethics? What is the biggest challenge for DIY bands?

Adrian:

Until now, we’ve been organizing hardcore shows in Brasov, under the name of Play Or Die Booking, also Fading Halo Records now. The “Society Discontinued” CD pack was assembled by us, and the artwork was made by a friend (Viez). Oh, and we don’t agree with corporate sponsors, and any other shit like that, bringing dirty money into the scene, so we finance ourselves.

I think the biggest challenge is not to disband, because lots of people leave Romania to study or work (and that’s what I’m going to do if I stared Into the Forest is dead). Plus the money issue is also important. It’s difficult to pay for everything, and we don’t really get money for shows in our country.
Bogdan: We also try to keep the prices low for our merch and we have decided to always make our music available as free download. In the future I’d like for us to do more of the artwork ourselves.
Feeling unappreciated because of small audiences might also become a challenge to DIY artists at some point. We don’t really think about this since we’re kinda just starting out.

Andrei:

In the process of making and releasing Society Discounted we got our hands dirty, so to speak, with what could do ourselves, working under a bit of pressure in the end because everything had to be ready for the tour, and I’m happy that we chose to it this way.
I think it’s been helpful for our future efforts, and it will be easier next time. For me it is much more meaningful to have done this DIY because it proves that we can be independent and do our own thing, and also that if we try, we can do more than we thought we could. DIY is all about empowering yourself, and I’m all in for that.
Having the resources to support everything is tough, but if people work together toward their goals, learn from each other and share, it becomes much easier. I guess the internet helps too, since it gives you information and a set of tools people didn’t have 20 years ago.

Where have you been touring so far?

Adrian:

Hungary, Austria, Czech Republic, Germany and Serbia, this fall with COINS AS PORTRAITS and EL CABRARET.

Andrei:

I heard it was killer. [laughs]

Will there be a chance to see you at some summer festivals this year? How about Fluff Fest? Are you trying to apply for some of European camps like Fluff?

Adrian:

Maybe in the crowd [Laughs]. I don’t know. We are currently working on some new material. But who knows, maybe.

Andrei:

Personally, I’d love to play at Fluff Fest and some of the other fests, like CRY ME A RIVER. Hell, even if we don’t get to play, I’d still love to go.

Bogdan:

We definitely want to tour this summer or early autumn. We’re going to try to get on a couple of festivals but it all depends on when we can leave and when our next record will be done.

What are your plans for the future as a band? Are you writing already?

Bogdan:

Yeah, we’re working on a few new songs, it will most likely be released on 7inch and CD. We’ll try to get it done this summer, then probably a small tour. After that, either a couple of splits or maybe a longer record.

Andrei:

Yea, this time we might “go vinyl” too haha, I’d like that. Also, the new tour is a must since I couldn’t attend the first one!

What does everyone in the band do when they are not playing or writing for I STARED INTO THE FOREST?

Bogdan:

I also play guitar in a fucked up grindcore band called COINS AS PORTRAITS, do some label work for Fading Halo Records and go to my office job, writing software. Claudiu, our new drummer, also has his main band called The Dignity Complex which is kinda modern progressive metal and he goes to school.

Adrian:

I’m trying to save the world of course [laughs]. Nah. I’m just studying for my Master Degree, and trying to make some music with my side project with Andrei.

Andrei:

I’m in my last year of master studies, so it’s not long until I finish school… Other than that, yea, trying to write songs for the emo band with Adrian and a friend, watching movies (sometimes I have a weakness for those that are so bad that they’re good, but I love cult and obscure films too). Wow, just realized this, 3/4 of us are still “schoolboys”…

Thank you and all the best to you for the rest of the year! Anything you’d like to add?

Adrian:

Thank you for the interview. I hope to meet you at a show someday. Fuck ACTA!!!

Bogdan:

To anyone who’s into weird hardcore: download our record!

Andrei:

Watch some Monty Python tonight!

I STARED INTO THE FOREST live:

Comments
To Top