Interview by Jason Guest
With the new album The Arts of Destruction, Desaster is entering its 24th year as a band. Looking back to the early days, how has Desaster developed since then? Are you at the point where you thought the band would be or have you exceeded your expectations?
We are still not a part of the music business, or better said, if we are, we don’t care about. I think we have reached our expectations a long time ago, but, there are still some interesting goals to reach: world domination; becoming the emperor of Europe and Asia; to have our own brewery; something like that.
What is it that drives Desaster to continue making such intense music?
The love and passion for metal and for making metal music. Simply. Very easy! It’s not all about the money! Hahahaha…
Now that it’s complete, how do you feel about The Arts of Destruction? Are you happy with the finished product?
Of course we are, and this time we have a very good sound on “The Arts Of Destruction” but I need more time to have a greater distance from the songs. Now, the songs are still the new ones.
How does it differ from your previous album, 2007’s Satan’s Soldiers Syndicate? And what do you feel is the biggest evolution in your sound since then?
I don’t think there is much evolution. We only write what we feel, and of course time will change a few things, but at the core it’s the same as the “Satan’s Soldiers Syndicate” album. Maybe this time it’s more BLACK and not that much THRASH, but in the end it’s only Desaster.
When did writing start for the album? Were they complete before you go in to the studio? And what’s the writing process with the band?
All the songs are finished when we go to the studio. We have no money to waste for writing songs in a studio. And if the song is not ready we will wait till the composition is finished. All the riffs (building the basics of the songs) came from Infernal, like every time. But we build a song together at the rehearsal room and record demos from the shit. So I can listen to the demos and write the lyrics, and choose the title’s which fits to the songs spirit. I hope it fits?!?! But this all comes naturally. We don’t have a master plan, we only write songs we like. There are no old songs used on “The Arts Of Destruction”. All the songs were written between 2007 and 2011.
Where does inspiration come from for the lyrics?
Inspiration you can find anywhere. Normally I write about the things that piss me of. I write about things I can’t understand or that make me suffer that people act like this or that.
Is there a concept or theme that ties the album together?
Not really a concept. “The Arts Of Destruction” is more the main theme and everything in the lyrics is about death and destruction.
Can you tell us about it and if/how it informed the writing and structuring of the tracks and the album?
The music was done first, I tried to catch the feeling of the music and bring the right words to it.
Axel Herman did the painting, and he did it quiet well. Tormentor [drums] came up with the idea, because he likes his covers (MORGOTH, TIAMAT, ASPHYX…) and I only gave him the title “The Arts Of Destruction” and he delivered what you can see on front of our record.
In an online interview elsewhere, you quoted Nietzsche: “without music, life would be madness”. How do you interpret this? What is the purpose of music?
I not really sure what music means to anyone on this planet, but for me, it’s not only a universal speech, it’s also the pool of “true” emotions, where you are allowed to say and feel what you like.
Will you be touring in support of The Arts of Destruction?
No, we won’t do a complete tour. We prefer single shows at the weekend. The live performance has to be a ritual and not a job. And of course we all have “normal” jobs next to Desaster, and it’s not that easy to have holidays all the time.
Will we be seeing you in the UK?
That would be great. We played several times in Ireland, once in London, once in Edinburgh, so we need to be invited to the U.K. again.
Do you have any favourite tracks on The Arts of Destruction?
My favourites are: “The Art Of Destruction”, “Phantom Funeral” and “At Hell’s Horizons”
Is there anywhere that you’re looking forward to playing live?
I want to Desasterize Moskau. This is the one city I wish to play. But everywhere where you see new things and interesting people is also a good place to play.
Which do you prefer, vinyl or CD?
I like both. I buy CD’s and LP’s, maybe if I really love one record, I will buy both, the compact disc and the vinyl! But I don’t like MP3 I want something “real” to hold it in my hands.
What are your views on downloading music?
I don’t like the internet that much. Talking about Facefuckbook or something like that, where people sitting at home and writing with their friends. That’s stupid. But there is still something good, I can listen to lots of music, and select what I need to buy, and of course, there is a lot of free porn on the internet. Of course this is diminishing the value of music, because no one needs to buy, and no one listens carefully. Remembering the old days, where you have to wait for weeks till your order (of new records) reached your house, I sat down, listened carefully and stared at the artwork. Today you get your hard disc going to a friend and copy 100 albums in 10 minutes.
Has it had any effect on Desaster?
I don’t know, maybe if it was still 1986 we would sell more records, but I don’t know, and it’s not interesting for me because I don’t want to live on Desaster.
How do you view the impact of the internet on the underground? Some argue that it’s empowering as it has diminished major label dominance and allowed bands to reach a wider audience – particularly for underground bands – whereas others argue that it is making music too easily available and so diminishing the value of music as a creative and expressive entity.
Like I said before the internet is very good to find some new exiting music, but you have to find it first. Hahahahah… And there is always another way for the big companies and labels to get our money. Hahahaha…
Do you think that because of the ease of making music available, the internet has affected the quality of music?
Of course, it’s more easy to record, you don’t need to play it the right way, because you can “repair” it at the computer. This is why there are too much bands today. They don’t need to play (and be good!) live to get attention.
Thanks for taking time out for this interview. Do you have anything you’d like to say to our readers?
Normally I bring these words: “Without music, life would be madness!” Thank you for listening (carefully) to Desaster. If you are not a listener, you won’t have read this!