1. Greetings Hades! First of all, congratulations on the release of your killer debut album entitled ''Demonic Incursion''. I personally think it's your strongest effort yet. It is a malignant aural rape of thrashy black/death played in the purest, old school tradition. Were there any expectations that you felt had to be fulfilled during the manifestation of this album and was the result satisfactory in your opinion? How long were you and Iblis working on it? Was Demonic Incursion everything you wanted your debut to be?
Hades: Greetings, James! Yes, there were plenty of expectations that I had when working on this debut. But sadly, the results weren’t 100% satisfactory, to me. The tracks were mostly composed between 2007-2008, some even way back to a few years ago. But I only got to blend in the drums with Iblis for some months in 2009, before it’s finally recorded, and materialized to what it’s become. Although it doesn’t satisfy me wholly, I’m still quite pleased with the end result, despite the lack of finance for a proper recording. It could definitely be way better, if there is more recording time, in my point of view. But somehow, this album still fucking kills and crushes all stupid forms of faith!
2. Despite being from Asia, I've found that your music tends to evoke that same hellish energy reminiscent of South American bands of old, which is probably where you draw most of your musical inspirations from, right? But being from Singapore, you are quite obviously inspired by IMPIETY and ABHORER, so how much of an impact has these two hordes had on the foundation of your sound? I mean, would you say that one of your aspirations with BATTLESTORM is to reach a level of superiority similar to the aforementioned bands?
Hades: About the music, I've always worshipped the South American style, and I think I’m also very lucky to have pioneers of the barbaric Asian sound existing from my country. Impiety and Abhorer had created hymns so crude sounding, and very violent in their own style which I very well have been very inspired by. But if you're talking about compositions, well I think I’ve only created my own version, my own style, in my very own way. Any others can be a copycat of their pioneers, but not me. If possible, yes I would want Battlestorm to achieve superiority like Impiety/Abhorer. But action speaks louder than words. Also as you've already know, nowadays there are too many fucking bands around, which I shall also say, EVERYONE has a fucking band. This is the fucked up reality that all bands (both wimps and warriors) have to face. And moreover, the 'underground' record labels that mostly exist nowadays are releasing only the 'cult' Blasphemy-lookalike clone 'war metal' bands, or the Dissection-wannabe trendy 'religious' black metal flock. No matter how talented, unique or how true a band can be, can never match the 'cult' gimmick bands and 'stone-worshipping' bands that exist nowadays. So all I can say is that, I'll just have to wait and see what the future holds for this band. I didn’t form Battlestorm to please, entertain or impress others. And I'm definitely not self-proclaiming my band to be cult either. Just do my best for the band to progress naturally in its own way, crushing all barriers made-up of trendfucks and morons.
3. I am in the opinion that it's important for bands to take inspiration from older bands from its own scene/country (unless there were never any good ones to take inspiration from, of course) as this can help develop the characteristic side of a scene's sound. Your thoughts?
Hades: It’s partly true, actually. Bands from any parts of the world tend to take inspiration from their own pioneers most of the time. Maybe it’s because of their pride in what their seniors have created and revolutionized. For example, as I’ve already mentioned before, the ruthless energy, barbaric speed and heaviness of old Singapore bands like Impiety/Abhorer have helped develop and cultivate the growth of more barbaric bastard bands around here. Same like South American bands. Roughly, you'd know what a typical South American band(not forgetting the usual word BESTIAL) would sound like, and who they got their inspirations from. This isn’t bad at all. But also, some bands prefer to differ in types of style from what their pioneers have created. Like I know of some bands here in S'pore, who prefer to have a more European style approach in their music. I've also heard of a Cannibal Corpse sound-alike band from Peru, and even epic Egyptian style worship bands from Europe and US. No harm done, just a matter of preference. Like me, I've always worshipped South American bands(old and new), and also S'pore pioneers Abhorer and Impiety, so its only natural that Battlestorm has adapted an 'attack' style from the influences. Now that is MY own preference.
4. Generally-speaking, how does a band survive in an oversaturated scene full of trends, gossips and worthless uninspiring crap? What are your thoughts on all these poser ''musician'' faggots who play Metal just to show how 'technically proficient' they are/or to get their cocks wet in a vagina? For the most part, I've found that the people who are after such shit are the same assholes who have a lousy attitude towards the underground.
Hades: Very well said. But it all depends on what a band wants to accomplish, be it posers or not. We can be sick of these fucktards, but these assholes need to co-exist for us to triumph over their weak attitudes. And morons also have their own wimpy reasons too, on why they wanna have their own band (Like what you did mention, get their tiny dicks wet in a vagina). Some bands wanna have good musicianship skills applied to their music, while some prefer the raw and crude monotonous style. Honestly, I do listen to some tech death metal too(Not the Necrophagist type) but I'm not really, very into it. So it doesn't affect the way I handle my band in any way. The underground needs only those who understand the purpose of having a band. Good musicianship is a plus point for some, but that is also where the initial direction of a true band usually ends up in the wrong way, far from their sole objective. This is the time when 'true hordes', evolved to become 'true assholes'. But there are also many existing bands that improved and progressed musically but stayed true to their roots. I won’t mention any, though.
5. BATTLESTORM's sound is obviously more connected to old school Black Metal and Thrash than anything else as I hardly hear any Death Metal elements in your music except of course the ANGELCORPSE influence, but that's minor. I mean, you don't really play any Death Metal-styled tremolo riffs or anything? What Death Metal bands do you like?
Hades: I don’t define the music style or genre that I’ve created. It’s up to the listeners like yourself, to judge whether its death metal, black metal or thrash metal. It could even be heavy metal, I don’t really give a fuck. There are many influences though, and it varies, for example Bathory, Slayer, Morbid Angel, Sarcofago, Abhorer and many more. This is why I myself don’t categorize Battlestorm's music genre. Frankly James, I don’t even have any basic form of music knowledge. And I don’t really have the skills to play music. All I know is how to create the most destructive compositions for Battlestorm. I don’t even bother learning to improve my music structure, nor to handle the instruments well. My music evolves naturally, which some may like it, and some may not. I only know I always put in more effort for upcoming releases, so that it outshines its predecessors. There might be some devastating tremolo strikes in the future, but I don’t wanna go further into that right now. Now back to Death metal bands. I do worship many death metal bands, like Immolation, Incantation, Krisiun, Rebaelliun, Abhorrence, Mortem, to name a few. There definitely are plenty more, but at the moment I don’t think I wanna waste your space here.
6. I see that you aren't afraid to compose songs with a durable length, as some of the songs on ''Demonic Incursion'' exceed the 4 minute mark. Aren't you afraid that the songs might loose some of its ferocity when played at such lengths, especially with the type of style you play? Is it difficult for you to compose songs longer than 4-5 minutes?
Hades: Well, the fact is, its even more difficult for me to compose a shorter song than a longer one. I don’t normally set any timing of all of the compositions that I do, nor do I give a fuck about this thing called 'music structure'. I just compose what I’m able to, and make it as harsh as possible so that it rapes and crush the listeners without mercy. Even on the 'Tempest' demo, I didn’t realise that the songs were long, until upon recording. That's why in this album, I tried to make it shorter, but effective in its way. But in the end, I still can’t say much if I were to compose longer or shorter songs in future. Composing depends on what I feel is right; during the whole process the music is being created. It should complement the overall topics/writings and titles which I have created. And I think the length of each track for this album fits perfectly for its damaging purposes.
7. You covered SARCOFAGO's ''Nightmare'', which is easily one of the best SARCOFAGO covers my ears have been penetrated by! What was the reason for covering that particular song and how come you didn't include it on the full length as a bonus track? Is the cover going to feature on any upcoming compilation/tribute? It's very different compared to the original; was that the intention? I am in the opinion that, a cover must sound totally different from the original, if not at least better; do you agree? And what do you think about all these newcomer bands that cover bands like CELTIC FROST or BEHERIT without even owning any original material of these bands?
Hades: Ok, the reason I chose this song is simply because I really fucking like it, and HAVE to do a cover of it. In fact, if possible, I wanna do covers for the whole 'INRI' album, and make it my own. But that's impossible, I guess. Anyway, this 'Nightmare’ cover is taken from Sarcofago's 'Rotting' album version. So those who only know of INRI, don't even bother to check it out. This particular track, I have reserved it for the upcoming LP (vinyl) version of the album, which will soon be released via underground Scottish label, At War With False Noise. To me, an LP version has to be more special, that the track is kept only for the vinyl maniacs! Also, from the label's side of view (which is what I think), it’s more expensive to produce than CDs, so they deserve having that extra track. An additional track which the CD version doesn’t have, does or should definitely help the label in a way, I guess. And furthermore, trendies don’t get to listen to it, right? Well about this cover, I won’t say I’ve done it better than Sarcofago. No covers can be compared to the original Sarcofago assaults. As far as I’m concerned, there is no point in doing any covers if its gonna sound exactly the same like the original one. You might as well listen to the original release. The reason why I thrashed 'Nightmare', is simply because it HAS to be the style of a Battlestorm assault. I want this cover to blend well with the other tracks I’ve composed, so I exert more force and energy into it which makes it faster, compared to the original version.
Newcomer bands covering tracks from bands like Beherit, without owning a single shit of it? Hmmm. I don’t know of anyone like that around me, but it sure sounds fucking stupid. This is the perfect example of wannabe clones/clowns who don’t support the underground, but instead trying to gain from it! FUCK these pieces of shit! If you know any of these fagbags, better boycott their shitty, wimpy boybands in your zine like what Whorebasher did the last time, just in case I and the rest of the underground got hold of their stuff unknowingly, thinking that they are worthy bands. That will definitely save me some time and money in a way!
8. I really like the artwork done by Sickness666 for your debut! The macabre graphic goes hand in blender with the aural violence of BATTLESTORM. Can you tell us a little bit more about your cooperation with him and how you got him to do the artwork for you? What does the front cover conceal? Is there any metaphorical concept behind it?
Hades: I have been contacting Sickness since 2008, not so long ago. But, still, a good contact. Working with Sickness is easy, as long as the album has been recorded, he will do the job at lightning-speed, but very professional. Not fast as in 'getting everything messed up' kinda guy. Also, the cooperation was even much easier for me, as the label (Deathrash Armageddon), have been working with him for many releases. So I just tell both the label and Sickness, what I wanted, and I got an artwork even better than I expected. Real fucking killer, so fucking pleased!
There definitely is a meaning to that artwork. As all of my past and present releases have been conceptual, this is another one, and there's something depicted in this about the whole album. The art metaphorically shows a man, in pain, tearing his skin to reveal his true self, which is in fact, Satan. Simply stated, it shows Man unleashing his true evil identity, the demon within himself. And there's definitely more to it, which I don't wish to divulge further. Let your intellectual mind explore the whole idea of the album's concept by the artwork, lyrics, and music. Brainless, IQless, inferior lower mankind, FUCK OFF!
9. Tell us a bit about your current label: DEATHRASHARMAGEDDON - who released your last EP ''Violating Angels'' as well as your latest output; how did you hook up with this label and how has your cooperation with them been so far? What motivated you to sign a deal with them in the first place? Were there any other labels showing an interest in the vile creations of BATTLESTORM?
Hades: The initial part when I contacted Yuki of D.Armageddon was a deal to release an album. He asked me if I wanted to release anything before the album, and at that point of time, I had some raw tracks to be recorded which I could use, and it resulted in the 'Violating' tape. Right place at the right time. The only motivation for me to contact this label was because I own some of D.Armageddon's releases and gave it a try. I sent the demo; he liked it, and agreed to release my stuff. Very simple and brief. Yes there were some other labels interested at that time but the time range they wanna release the album would be draggy and takes a longer period of time, which I think if I did a deal with them, ‘til now this album wouldn’t be released. I'm a Singaporean, I prefer to do things fast, and I expect things to be done fast too. Yuki offers me a faster and earlier release date, which is perfect for me at that time. So 666 hails to him and the label!
10. It seems that DEATHRASHARMAGEDDON has done a rather good job with the promotion of ''Demonic Incursion'' as far as spreading it to other distros, which makes it more accessible to obtain; are you pleased with this? Tell me about the different formats available of ''Demonic Incursion'' and the involvement of the Bolivian label RAWBLACKCULT.
Hades: I really am not sure about the promotions and the spreading to other distros part. Well it might be good for the band, having more exposure in the underground, and getting more Battlestormaniacs from various parts of the world. So to know this from you, I’m very pleased. As you know, the initial stages for an unknown band like mine are really difficult, and to get a decent deal with proper labels who could release an album on every format is tough work. So the only ways I have to get deals for different formats at the moment are from various different labels. D.Armageddon (JAP) releases the CD versions, and At War (UK) will be releasing the vinyl soon. Rawblackult (Bol) released the tape version of the album, and that’s the only involvement. 3 different labels from 3 different continents, that should help spread my propaganda.
11. I've noticed that each format has a different artwork, as well as a different logo; why is this? Who is the artist responsible for the artwork on the DVD case version of ''Demonic Incursion''? It’s fucking awesome. It’s typical Asian styled and looks pretty abstract/surreal; what does it symbolize? Did you hire and pay someone to do this piece or was all that covered by your label?
Hades: The logo for the album is the same. The CD and LP will have the same artwork, which is by Sickness. The DVD case version for the CD is actually the 'JAP' style version. I don’t know the artist, I just asked Yuki that the ltd DVD case version should symbolize something which is very Japanese, plus very demonic-associated in concept as followed by the album title and original artwork. Good thing I don’t have to finance anything on the artworks, all done by the label. I was definitely pleased when he first showed me the art. Killer!
12. What is your opinion on these bands that feature the same godamn songs on every release they put out? Do you think this is perhaps a result from being lazy? I personally find it fuckin’ stupid when I see the same old songs of a band on every EP, demo, split they put out, especially if the band proceeds to do this for 6 years!!!
Hades: Hah, you're damn fukking right on this one. Lazy morons, they are. I know many bands that does this and they are, to me, considered as recycle bands. And it really sucks! No ideas and no fukking talent at all. They recycle the same songs all they want on every fukking release, and make them look real fukking stupid. A new different release & title? Argh fuck, its the same shitty tracks again!? I’m never impressed, nor would I even give a damn on these lazy lot. And 666% will I not support this style of rubbish they're doing! These scums should just do other stuff which is, NOT TO be in a fukking band! It’s a fukking insult to REAL bands! Period.
13. Up until this point, all your releases have sounded different from one another. Do you feel its important to try something different with each release in order to keep the variety flowing?
Hades: Whatever releases I do, is conceptual, and it has to justify all the ideas which I’ve already planned. I'm not gonna do the same thing over again. The band shall progress in every way it wants. But if one who owns all the demos ‘til the album, they will definitely know it’s the same band, with the same style, only with different types of approach and ideas depending on the concept of the release. Every one of my releases is very Battlestorm indeed. Other bands can keep on releasing the same things they've done previously, but not mine. More importantly, I have to be contented with the compositions myself, before anyone else. No fukking excuses!
14. Are there any newer albums that have been occupying your stereo lately or are you mostly stuck on the old ones? What do you think about the more recent cults like ANAL VOMIT, NECROS CHRISTOS, BESTIAL MOCKERY, BLASPHEMOPHAGER, DEIPHAGO and such? I am in the opinion that bands of today are still able to capture that same malignant atmosphere as the old ones did. But I suppose things have shaped up a bit over the last few years. I mean, if there wasn't any good bands still active today, then doing this 'zine would be a complete contradiction in itself; don't you think so? Do opinions like ''only old black/death/thrash is good'' have any relevance to you? To which Metal subgenres do you listen to most and what do you think about other styles like industrial, dark ambience, crust?
Hades: Of course, there are newer albums playing in my stereo. Like you mentioned, Anal Vomit is a fucking killer band, their first album is a regular on my player. I believe there are still, and there will be many awesome underground bands existing/to exist on this fucking planet. I don’t give a fuck of what others think, I only listen to real death, black, thrash, heavy metal. No stupid sub-genres or any 'core' shit.
15. Is making a career, as in income-wise out of the question and 'wrong' approach for an extreme black/death band? I mean, this can obviously have a negative affect on the overall quality of the music, right? Would you ever consider signing with a big label if it didn't go against the core ideals of BATTLESTORM?
Hades: Well, not really. If the label doesn’t give a fuck about what their bands want, as in sound and quality and only want things done in their way, then the bands might as well leave that stupid money freak label. There are choices to be made by each individual/bands, whether to be a wimp, or to be a warrior. The purpose to have an extreme black/death band IS to be extreme. Unless the initial purpose is to make money. Then might as well do some stupid mainstream music, instead of metal. Well, I haven’t even thought about signing on to any big label yet. So I have nothing to say on this.
16. Alright, thanks a lot for your time! I hope this interview will help the band spread its ammunition across this filthy world and get more maniacs to fight the battle with you against this scum society TIL EVERYTHING IS FUCKING DESTROYED! Feel free to drop your contact info/or add anything else that might be of interest to those reading. HAIL AND KILL!!!
Hades: First of all, thanks to you James Goatfukk for being such a perverted fukking Battlestormaniac, and covering another intie of us for the 2nd time! To all bestial DeathBlackThrashers of the Underworld who are reading this, get the latest Battlestorm album 'Demonic Incursion'! It’s especially created to Fukk u Sadistically, and Crush your pathetic skulls to pieces! Wimps, homos, and the likes, Fukk Off! Ave Satanas...
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