Thrash hardcore band MORAL VALUES was born in September 2014 in Milan, Italy, by an idea of Carlo (producer, audio engineer and owner of Toxic Basement Studio, former member and founder of GREEDY MISTRESS) and David (ex GREEDY MISTRESS). After a first, temporary, line-up that recorded two songs for a demo called “3 Minutes Demo” on March 2015, the band started to fully exist with a final line-up that includes Gabriele on guitar (former RUGGINE) and Fabio on vocals (ex OVERCHARGE), who joined during the summer of 2015. The full-length debut has just been recorded at Toxic Basement Studio (CRIPPLE BASTARDS, RAW POWER, INSANITY ALERT, FOAD RECORDS, MINDFUL OF PRIPYAT, …) and will be released on vinyl and tape in April 2016 via the band’s very own Slaughterhouse Records. The album is the real deal, with equal parts of hardcore and thrash metal blended in to form an explosive assault on your senses! IDIOTEQ is proud to give you the full stream of the record, along with a sleak interview serving you a brief introduction to the band, their newest effort, the themes they cover and their plans for the future.
Hey guys! Could you tell us a little bit about MORAL VALUES? How did you start this band and who’s in the current lineup?
The band was born in September 2014, just after the very last US tour of my previous band, GREEDY MISTRESS. I felt it was time to change and I founded this band with another former member of GREEDY MISTRESS, David.
We recorded a 2 songs demo (only available online), with a temporary line-up, during first half of 2015, then, in September 2015, we completed the line-up. This winter we recorded our full-length that will be out on April 1st, both on vinyl and tape, for Slaughterhouse Records.
So, right now, the line-up is: me on drums, David on bass, Gabriele (former RUGGINE) on guitar and Fabio (former OVERCHARGE) on vocals.
The title of the album, “Picnic In A Minefield”, is a bit controversial. How did you come up with this idea? Is it a concept tale? What inspired the lyrical content on the album?
“Picnic In A Minefield” is not a concept album by any means, but you can imagine lyrics and music together as a black and negative landscape that drives the listener through the tracks. Everything’s heavily inspired by dystopian and post-apocalyptic imaginary taken from movies and novels, using a straight-to-the-point or sarcastic way of writing.
We talk about human beings. We don’t criticize or praise any single person and we don’t criticize or praise some kind of group or institution, the whole human race is what we talk about. Evolution, science, history, discoveries have improved (or worsened) the way we live but at the very end we all suck the same way.
There are no specific points of view, there are no value judgements, we’re just saying this. And please note that there are no pro-war hidden messages inside the album.
There are quite a lot of new bands blending thrash metal with hardcore, but with MORAL VALUES, seems like you took even more subgenres and modernized the mixture your own way. Was this intentional? How do you go about choosing the right mood for your tracks?
Crossing over between metal and hardcore is not that new. Soundwise, we’re influenced by US and UK 80ies hardcore, crossover thrash, early death/black metal and early fastcore and grindcore but we just have this set of rules we follow: no basic song structure, no choruses, no solos. Other than that we don’t want to follow a special genre or subgenre.
Speaking about choosing the right mood, we start from a couple of riffs and we build up the whole atmosphere that leads the entire song. We work hard on making sure the song sounds cohesive (as we rarely repeat song parts) and pick some chords and arrangement solutions that help keeping that dark mood we are looking for.
Is Slaughterhouse Records the only label involved in the distribution?
Slaughterhouse Records (the label run by me and David) is the only label involved in releasing the album both on vinyl and cassette formats (no cd version planned). We have some distributors around that will sell it as well. No co-producers are involved, if that’s what you mean. We’re pretty happy about how things are going with the label, so we prefer to move on by ourselves.
Just a quick curiosity about this album: most of the album has been done by the band itself. The whole recording, mixing and mastering has been done by me at Toxic Basement Studio, front cover has been hand-painted by our singer and, as I just said, the album will be released by Slaughterhouse Records.
What excites you the most about this new project?
Focusing on human level, I’m happy to play with these people and in particular to play again with David, who played with me from 2009 to 2013 with GREEDY MISTRESS, sharing so many great things during those days. After he left the band we always kept in touch and when GREEDY MISTRESS disbanded and I was about to create something new, he was the very first to call me. That was the real thing that pushed me to start something new.
Concerning music, the choice to do something quite radically opposite from my past experience with GREEDY MISTRESS, was something I was looking for very strongly. With GREEDY MISTRESS we were looking for some kind of melody and a “regular” song structure, we were not properly a melodic band but melody was in there. Some kind of catchiness played a key role in songwriting. With MORAL VALUES, however, everything’s riff-driven and, as I said before, no “regular” song structure is wanted. It’s some kind of fresh air to me.
Do you have any plans to hit the road with MORAL VALUES?
We are going to play here in Milan the same day the album will be released (April 1st). Later we have some shows planned during April and May. We will also see if something interesting is coming for the summer and we’re also about to plan something for this autumn.
We decided to start writing and producing the whole album, instead of doing some songs, add a couple of cover songs and then record the album. We don’t do this, we play the whole album live, no pauses, no frills, no covers. That’s it.
We just did kind of a “warm-up” show in Brescia to check if the whole idea is going to work, and we were quite happy with the result.
Apart from touring, what’s next for the band?
We’re already working on new songs for a hypothetical new EP. Obviously it will be not a very next future release but let’s see if something new during next autumn/winter can come alive.
Alright guys, thanks a lot for your thoughts and this fine introduction of MORAL VALUES. Feel free to wrap it up with your final words and take care! Cheers from windy Warsaw!
Thank you for your time and the space you gave to MORAL VALUES!
I wish you all to grow your own individuality, be respectful towards the others and to support voluntary human extinction.
A big hug from Milan!