“People need to just wake up a bit, open their eyes and see that TV isn’t important, neither is a six pack or a nice fancy car.”
– Paul Kenney, Fukpig
Interview by Jason Guest
Jason: Hi Paul. Thanks for taking time out for this interview. To begin, why did you choose to re-record and re-release 2012’s album 3? (Ed: see Jason’s review of 3 here). Why not record a new album?
Paul: We have recorded a new album as well. Last year was quite productive. We recorded it as a little project in between recording album four, originally just doing one track. But that then spread to re-recording the whole album as we were pleased with the new way the tracks were going.
Jason: What has the response to the decision to re-record and re-release the album been like?
Paul: Mainly it’s been interest and loads of questions about why we have re-recorded it. Loads of people re-record stuff; the first few Extreme noise terror albums are all the same tracks in different orders and recorded at different times.
Jason: What are the main differences between 3 and The World is Weakening?
Paul: Everything is different; we have a whole new line up for the re-recording, which is why we stated doing it in the first place, just to practise. The track listing is different; it even has tracks not originally on 3. Plus some tracks on 3 we didn’t bother recording again.
Jason: Nicola Honey designed the artwork for The World is Weakening. What is it about her work that drew you to her for the album?
Paul: We have known Nicola for over 15 years, her work is so detailed and time consuming and different for our normal style. We thought it would work really well.
Jason: Did you discuss ideas for the design or did you leave her to her own devices?
Paul: We discussed a few ideas but most of it was from her own style.
Jason: Fukpig has been in existence since 2001. How has the band developed since its inception?
Paul: We haven’t; we play black metal-infused d-beat crust punk, and have done since 2001; we were doing it before in Mistress and just carried on.
Jason: Does it work in your favour being a two-piece band?
Paul: Yeah it works well, though we now have a full line up.
Jason: Fukpig’s music and lyrics contain a very serious message. With ever-widening class division, increasing political deceit, media domination, and rampant capitalism, it seems that Fukpig will never be short of inspiration. Despite ongoing protest and the increasing evidence that they are flawed systems, capitalism, religion, and politics still maintain a powerful position in the twenty first century. Why do you think such institutions maintain their position and power?
Jason: There are those that take every opportunity to assert that humanity is so weak that domination by capitalist ideology and institutions such as the church is inevitable. Do you agree? And do you ever see this changing?
Paul: I don’t agree at all, no. People need to just wake up a bit, open their eyes and see that TV isn’t important, neither is a six pack or a nice fancy car.
Jason: Protest songs concerning the state of the world, the environment, and the economy in particular have long been themes in heavy music. Do you think that music has the power to affect or even instigate such a significant change?
Paul: I think music does have the power; it can change your whole life path when you’re young. Just one track can change everything. One lyric can mean enough for you to live differently or change, though this doesn’t apply to all music.
Jason: You release all of Fukpig’s music through your own label, Devizes Records. What are the pros and cons of having your own label? How does it compare with being signed to someone else’s label?
Paul: Well, having our own label means we can release what we want when we want. Take the latest CD for example, released on a Sunday afternoon and sold out by tea time the following day. We couldn’t do that on a regular record label, though if we were on a bigger label we might get a little more support and promotion.
Jason: You write, record, and release all of your own music as well as have control of and post all of your merchandise. Is that personal touch important for music?
Paul: I think so yeah, it’s important to us. I love it when I buy a record from a band and they have put in a badge or a flyer or something extra, rather than just a packing slip from Amazon. It’s all from me, one guy in a house trying to make a little difference. Every single sale is important to me.
Jason: With music available pretty much everywhere and file-sharing becoming the norm, has music lost its value? Do you think that audiences’ relationship with music has changed?
Paul: To me it hasn’t; I’m not sure how the younger generation are dealing with it all. Maybe it is making it all a bit throwaway. But it’s opened the door to all recorded sound now being available at the click of a button. It’s making old music now new music.
Jason: Devizes has released music by Moghul (Ed: reviewed here) and Kroh (Ed: reviewed here). Any new releases coming from either of those bands? And are there any new bands on the horizon for Devizes?
Paul: I’m working on new Kroh material that should be ready in a couple of months; Moghul are taking a break at the moment which is a shame as I loved their EP. I played it non-stop as soon as I heard it. We were very pleased to be able to release it on vinyl. We are always looking for bands to put out. We put out Kaliyuga last year and they should have an album ready this year.
Jason: Back to Fukpig, the band get loads of requests for live shows, in the UK and abroad. Any plans to play anytime soon?
Paul: No plans as yet. We will never say never. But at the moment nothing has been offered that we want to do.
Jason: What does the future hold for Fukpig? Is there more material in the works?
Paul: We have a full album written and recorded, so we should have something out soon. Plus the vinyl version of this world is weakening is coming in Febuary.
Jason: Thanks again for taking time out for this interview. Do you have any closing words for our readers?
Paul: Thanks for all the support.
And you can keep up with Fukpig here