Prior to their upcoming European trek, Göteborg’s blackened death metal band AGE OF WOE and German grinding beast IMPLORE have teamed up ith IDIOTEQ for a nice double interview about touring, their new recordings and the evolution they have experienced. See the amazing tour teaser by Chariot Of Black Moth and launch the abrasive and thrilling soundtrack to an interview story of 2 of one of the more treacherous and intense, social aware extreme metal bands around.
Photo: IMPLORE live by Cyclopsrevolution.
11/09/2015 GER Greifswald Klex
12/09/2015 GER Berlin Koma F
13/09/2015 GER Gießen AK44
14/09/2015 GER Weimar Gerber 3
15/09/2015 GER Cologne Sonic Ballroom
16/09/2015 LUX Luxemburg Rocas Bar
17/09/2015 GER Tübingen Epplehaus
18/09/2015 CZ Slavonice Kawarna
19/09/2015 CZ Prague Exit Us
Hey guys! So, you’re hitting the road together in just less than a month. How did that idea come out? What sparked the idea to hit the road together?
IMPLORE: HI! Well AGE OF WOE were working on it before hand and i can’t recall how I got in the conversation with Sonny and Joe Stateless and eventually we ended up doing this together. Which is quite exciting. Let’s say it wasn’t planned but a cool coincidence.
AGE OF WOE: Yes, we can’t wait to hit the roads again. We’ve put a lot of focus on writing and preparing our upcoming second album for some time now, so playing live has not been a priority. But now we have reached the stage where we want to play the new material live, sort of a baptism of fire.
The initial plan was to tour in September, so when we presented the idea to our booker, Joe at Stateless Society, he thought it would be a good idea, and a great match, to bring IMPLORE on the tour. I guess he was right because the tour was booked very fast.
How do you book your shows? Why’s there so many German shows? ;)
IMPLORE: This tour was booked quite fast, within a week and a half probably. I suppose because it’s a short tour and distances had to be reduced… also Joe and myself have more contacts for Germany, so I guess that made it easier to get more shows in German soil.
AGE OF WOE: Joe is booking all our European tours, so I think you’ll have to ask him about that. But my guess is that since IMPLORE are from Germany and Stateless Society are based in Berlin, that’s a logic outcome. But next time we will put more focus on other parts of Europe.
Will there be more shows from you guys later this year? Any plans of touring outside Europe?
IMPLORE: For us this is the first one of 4 tours in Europe till December. We are going to hit Belgium and the UK in October and Russia afterwards, then we fly back to Germany and we have 2 other tours lined up. The first one alone in Southeast Europe (Balkan countries, Greece, Turkey) and the second one in the West of Europe with THIS GIFT IS A CVRSE (Portugal, Spain, France, etc.)… We are also planning our return to the US in March-April 2016.
AGE OF WOE: After this tour we will return home to finish up the new album, so that will be the main focus throughout the autumn. We might still have a show or two to announce though, so keep your eyes open.
We always have plans and that of course includes plans to tour other parts of the planet, but nothing is set in stone yet so we’ll see what happens.
Do you consider touring a fuel for your creativity?
IMPLORE: Touring is a fuel for life, it’s the best that ever happened to me and i wouldn’t trade my position right now for anything or anyone… i got the chance to see places and meet people that i would never could otherwise… So i take every chance to tour, i love it.
AGE OF WOE: I do, it’s a vital part of AGE OF WOE and a great catalyst. Since we always record live in the studio, it’s a crucial part of the process to tour and play shows. That way we have the time and opportunity to try things and work out arrangements and ideas to optimise the songs before we enter a studio. It’s also very inspiring to meet all the creative people you meet on tour, all the bands and also to see all the cities and environments. It’s a truly inspiring experience altogether.
Do you use live shows as a chance to make young people aware of certain social and political issues?
IMPLORE: Yes and no, if playing live awakes people’s interest to check us out afterwards and to pay attention in what the band is based on, then yes, we are taking it as part of a social/political contribution by sharing our thoughts through our music. But I don’t give speeches or explain songs lyrics before playing them… I rather people to check out what’s written and to figure that out themselves.
AGE OF WOE: Not necessarily, but of course, since I’m writing all the lyrics, I’m always happy to learn that someone have been affected or touched by the words I’ve written. I’m more interested in using lyrics as a means of contemplation and reconsideration rather than pointing fingers, it’s not my style of expressing myself lyrically. I rather talk about social and political issues before or after shows instead.
How much do you follow politics? Is there anything that pisses you off that you feel more of our readers and gig-goers should be aware of?
IMPLORE: I don’t follow the mass media news, but there are way too many things that pisses me off. One of those is to see so called left wing people supporting American troops and ignoring the fact that the new world order is a real thing.
AGE OF WOE: Very much, everything is politics. It’s very important to be aware of what is going on around us and more people should be concerned. There are so many things that makes me pissed off in this world, so I wouldn’t know where to start. Everything from how bankers infiltrate and dismantle sovereign states for financial gain and economical power to the increasing racism and intolerance towards people fleeing from war, poverty and misery. You can never be too aware, so read, discuss, connect and educate yourself and each other.
Everything is politics.
Photo: AGE OF WOE.
I’d like to take this opportunity to shoot IMPLORE a couple of questions on their new album “Depopulation”, which is about to hit the streets via Pelagic Records. Guys, what does this record mean to you personally? Was it hard to put it together and shape the final product? How was the process?
IMPLORE: The idea of “Depopulation”s concept came itself very easily and natural, the whole theme, artwork and lyrics. Depopulation was intended to be the continuation of our previous EP “Black Knell”, and as the name points it was announcing the beginning of the depopulation… The EP was released on July 4th 2014, well not to be less the LP is coming out on September 11th. The writing process got complicated cause I had to carry on some personal duties and Michi had to work double shifts in order to be able to tour the US, in the end he was unable to record the album and Christian Bass (HEAVEN SHALL BURN, and our previous drummer as well) he did it. We went through some times of stress due to the personal commitments, but it all came out well in the end.
I wondered if you are surprised by the fast growth of the band? IMPLORE has been around for 2 years and it has already received so much praise. How do you feel about that?
IMPLORE: When we started this in 2013 we were not expecting anything from anyone, we wanted to play live as much as possible and to have fun doing it. When I told Daniel (guitars) about starting this band right after we met I underlined to be serious about it, I was not gonna put so much effort and time to see it fade away in a bunch of months or to fall into oblivion after a bunch of gigs. We were driven and dedicated, I think the attitude you have towards things is what takes you where you want to go, I’m a dreamer and beacuse of that I’m living in a foreign country playing the music I like. I feel satisfied so far, because a lot of people paid attention to us and it’s nice to see that someone cares for what you do, all the struggle pays back. We are deeply thankful.
The band’s initial line-up has been changing since day one. Is it stable now?
IMPLORE: The core of IMPLORE now is Daniel on guitars, Michael on drums and Gabriel (myself) bass & vocals. Since we are people with regular jobs we cannot take as much time off as we want for touring, we have Petro helping us out like in the US tour, and Arnau another friend of mine will be joining us on drums for the Russian tour cause Michael can’t take holidays for that time. Would be nice to tour with the official line up all the time, would be the best for everyone… but we need our jobs.
Ok guys, so can we expect some new recordings from AGE OF WOE, as well? Are you guys ready to serve us a follow up to your latest split and the “Inhumanform” LP?
AGE OF WOE: We are getting there, yes. As I mentioned before, we’re working hard on the new album at this point. So a new album is underway, which feels absolutely amazing. It’s going to be a hectic and busy fall for us to get everything in order. But we’ve come a long way for sure. It’s always hard to follow up on a debute album and I know that we have evolved a lot since we recorded “Inhumanfome”, so it’s going to be interesting to see how people like the new material. At the moment we’re focused on bringing this one home. It’s a lot of work with album cover, finding the right studio, talking to record labels etc etc.
You all have been doing your thing, composing, recording and playing gigs for a while now. Could you say a little about your motivation to write new music?
IMPLORE: It’s been a while since we wrote our last song for the album, we didn’t write anything new ever since… But the time will come that some new ideas will pop up in the practice room or at home and we will start building the songs for another record or split. The motivation is that we love what we do. Why stop doing something you love?
AGE OF WOE: When I think about it we’re always writing new music, more or less. I think it’s a natural drive in AGE OF WOE to constantly move forward. That’s one of the things I love with this band, the creativity and the constructive atmosphere that exists between us in the band. I’d say that the chemistry alone is the main motivation for us to evolve and writing new material.
Who are the writers and musicians that first inspired you to start your own bands and who are the people and acts you follow now? What’s changed?
IMPLORE: We were inspired by bands such as CATTLE DECAPITATION, LOOKING FOR AN ANSWER, MISERY INDEX, EXHUMED, NAILS… and many many others but Daniel and I have a hardcore influence, Michi comes from extreme metal. All combined shaped us on some kind of grind-crust-death hybrid. I like Thoreau, Orwell and many other writers, I watch a lot of documentaries and try to shape everything on an abstract way, sometimes it works and others are just straight to the face type of lyrics.
AGE OF WOE: Oh, that’s a tough question to answer. As long as I can remember I’ve been intrigued by the thought of playing in a band. I think what motivated me to start my first band was the scene in itself. So much creativity and inspiration were to be found everywhere. Now I’m mainly following underground bands and always have been. There’s nothing fun or interesting to follow a band like IRON MAIDEN for example, because that’s more like following a company. But to follow real bands, bands as living and breathing organisms, that’s a real treat and again very inspiring.
Has the ubiquitous technology influenced your evolution? How do you see the dynamic digital age we live in affecting independent music scene?
IMPLORE: It’s cool to be easy to reach, you open the browser and you can find all the information about any band anywhere. Technology played an important roll for us cause we got visible through facebook and other bands shared our music, it obviously helped us to grow and build an audience. On the musical aspect, Daniel demoed a lot of songs on his computer with an interface and the quality was fantastic, this made the whole writing process a lot easier cause we could listen to songs before we learnt to play them perfectly. On the other side of the technology it affects on the record sales numbers, we are not selling much physical music even though our ep is sold out, but 500 copies in more than 80 shows is not much honestly. People bought our digital ep, but we sell more merch than music. It’s a strange feeling somehow. Facebook is a useful tool to get in touch with promoters or with people who can help out finding a place to sleep, a venue or someone somewhere willing to book a show. Everything has its ups and downs…
AGE OF WOE: I think it’s mainly a positive thing. It makes it easier for bands to take control over their music and organisation and also to spread the music worldwide without labels, pr agents and all that. But the downside is that it has opened up for pretty much anyone to release music online which I think makes it hard for bands to be found in the jungle of low quality music. But generally I think it’s a good thing, a more linear and respectful scene.
Ok, guys. What else? Are there any bands out right now that are really exciting you? I mean both the world of extreme music and all kinds of records that you might be ashamed of liking ;)
IMPLORE: I can’t stop playing the latest Cattle Decapitation album, also the new Deathrite LP is killer… PRIMITIVE MAN, USNEA, MANTAR, DOWNFALL OF GAIA, SEVEN SISTERS OF SLEEP, VALLENFYRE, etc. I spend 6 days a week in a tattoo shop and i have to research heavy music without extreme vocals to avoid annoying my collegues, I’m a lot into the latest KLONE album too. Daniel is a big Lana del Rey fan and I listen to some some dream pop stuff, I’m not ashamed at all.
AGE OF WOE: I like a lot of different genres and there are so many great bands out there right now. I think we’re living in a good time right now for underground music. At the moment I’m really into bands like A GENERATION OF VIPERS, GALVANO, GOATWHORE, ILSA, KONTINUUM, MAMMOTH GRINDER, MONOLORD, MUTOID MAN, RENTOKILLER, RIWEN, SOLBRUD, THIS GIFT IS A CURSE, TRIBULATION, TIMEWORN, VENOM PRISON and YOB, to name a few. I also listen to a lot of balkan folk, country, action rock, post rock and much more. But I’m always on the lookout for new bands that can blow my mind.
Cool. Thanks so much for your time guys and good luck on the road!
IMPLORE: Thank you very much for paying attention to us both and we really appreciate in the name of
IMPLORE the chance to be part of your site! thanks!!!
AGE OF WOE: Thank you very much, Karol. It’s always a pleasure. Keep up the good work!