Reading the book “Swedish Death Metal” from Daniel Ekeroth I recognized his great words about KATALYSATOR (well, that’s not what I would call a cool name…), telling “they looked like NIHILIST, sounded like GROTESQUE and had more Death Metal attitude than anyone else” and what else could I do then to check out this band immediately? That’s what I did and I was totally blown away by their 2nd demo “Mass Genocide Ritual” (read my review for further details) which has so much oldschool spirit that I couldn’t believe it that we are dealing with a bunch of 17 year old youngsters. That was the age ENTOMBED wrote their best songs so (quote Daniel Ekeroth:) “let’s hope that these boys never grow old!”, haha. Go on reading what Gotte Grotesque has to say!
Hi Gotte, how’s life in Sweden these days? What are you up to?
"Hi Thomas. Well, it’s ok but there are still some churches left for us to burn but it’s ok. Not much, listening to some Mortuary Drape."
You formed your band in winter of 2004/2005, a time when all of you were between 13-15 years old. How did everything start and what’s the idea behind KATALYSATOR. What do you want to achieve?
"We were a few friends who hung out and listened to Metal together and we all wanted to play Death Metal, so we started KATALYSATOR. At the beginning I think we saw KATALYSATOR as a little sideproject (all of us played in other bands too) so we just wanted to play and rehearse for fun. But after a while we got a gig at a Death / Grind Metal festival in Uppsala (were we live) and after that a lot of people talked to us and said they really liked us and so on, after that we decided to record our first demo “Zombie Destruction” and it wasn’t until then it got really serious. We want to show people what Death Metal is about, that it’s not all about playing fast and technical music. We want to show that Death Metal is a lifestyle."
You wrote in your biography that you were mainly influenced by such cult acts as AUTOPSY, DEATH, POSSESSED, NECROVORE, NIHILIST, REPUGNANT, REPULSION, MORTUARY DRAPE, VERMINOUS, KAAMOS… which aren’t the most common bands, especially not for such a bunch young people like you are, if you ask me? I think it’s not really natural for a band with such young members to be influences by these acts. How did you come in touch with this kind of influence and weren’t there any "modern" bands as influence involved, too?
"Don’t forget SEPULTURA! They were a really big influence back then! I don’t know really how we got in touch with such bands but me and P. Pestilence have always been interested to find obscure underground bands, and when you are 12-14 those bands are really obscure and underground. I did listen to a lot modern bands when I was younger but I got tired of it, it’s not honest music and the band members looks like sport freaks or hip hoppers. But I don’t think you can find any modern influences in our music."
Tell me more about your influences. What do you think about the above mentioned bands and what do you think on the other side of the current Death Metal bands like KATAKLYSM, NILE, ARCH ENEMY, AMON AMARTH among others?
"Our main influences are the bands you mentioned earlier and SEPULTURA. I can’t say that I like any of those bands. I think they all suck, but I still like the thing NILE is doing with the occult Egyptian lyrics and shit."
Why did you choose KATALYSATOR as your band moniker? For me this is something a today’s car needs to have, but I didn’t relate it so far to anything dealing with Death Metal
"We thought it sounded cool and we have heard that our band name sucks a lot but we don’t really care. It is something that is purifying and we want to make Death Metal pure and honest as it was in the old days. But we are actually trying to figure out a new bandname."
What do you think about the progression a band like ENTOMBED chose? Do you think something like this will happen to you, too?
"I actually like all the stuff ENTOMBED did after “Clandestine” (except of “Same Difference”) but of course I don’t think it’s Death Metal, but the latest EP “When In Sodom” I think is Death Metal, it’s more Death Metal than all these technical bands like NECROPHAGIST and those shitbands. I don’t think we will ever do something like that. I think that the main reason ENTOMBED did as they did is because they invented something new and when you do that it is a natural development. The reason why bands like DISMEMBER and stuff didn’t go the way as ENTOMBED did I think is because they didn’t have the same aspiration to development. I don’t think anything like that could ever happen to a band that is dedicating their music to the old bands and want to play real Death Metal, ENTOMBED didn’t thought about their the same way, if you read interviews with ENTOMBED they say they didn’t think about their music that way, they didn’t think about it as Death Metal the same way as KATALYSATOR is doing."
You call yourself Pelle Pestilence (vocals), Hampe Death (guitar), Adde Asphyx (guitar), Gotte Grotesque (bass) and Adde B Obscene (drums). What’s the reason for your pseudonyms? Who inspired you to take them?
"Would Fenriz be as cool as he is if he called himself Yngve when he played with DARKTHRONE? The pseudonyms we use symbolizes that KATALYSATOR isn’t just music, we take it further."
Well, coming back to story of KATALYSATOR. Shortly after you formed your band you released the demo "Zombie Destruction". How were the reactions on it? How many copies did you sell and are you still satisfied with it?
"The reactions were quite good and people understood what we were doing. But when it was released and everything was done we just needed to do more and to do better so we recorded the new demo. It was printed in around 50 copies. But we will print more demos and they are still available."
In March 2007 you released your 2nd demo "Mass Genocide Ritual”. How’s the response so far?
"We have got pretty good response and I think it is a lot because of myspace. We have got many orders from people in other countries than Sweden. The first demo had only been sold in Sweden, maybe a couple outside of Sweden, that’s why we will make more copies of the first demo."
What do you think about my comparison I wrote in my review that KATALSYATOR sound for me like a perfect mix between NIHILIST and GROTESQUE. Can you live with that and how would you describe your sound by your own?
"I am not surprised, because they are some of our favourite bands. We would describe our music as DEATH Metal."
What was the reason why you released your demos on cassette and not on CDR?
"Because cassettes look and sound better."
You told me that one of your goals for the future is to release a 7"EP. Is already a label interested in releasing that seven inch or how are your plans to realise that?
"A lot of labels have been interested but we haven’t decided were to release it but it will come."
This idea sounds very old-fashioned. Why do you want to release a 7"EP instead of an ordinary CD?
"Because a 7” looks better and sounds better."
Wouldn’t you suit perfect to Blood Harvest Records for releasing this seven inch? What do you think about this label?
"I think it’s one of the best labels around."
What do you think about the current scene in Sweden? I’m aware of such great newcomers like TRIBULATION, CORRUPT or NECROVATION. What do you think about them and do you have some more bands to mention worth to check out?
"I think they are really great, NECROVATION is one of the best bands around right now. But the bands you really need to check out is DEGIAL! They are the best band in Sweden right now! Pure dark and evil Death Metal, and don’t forget to check out VINDICATE (www.myspace.com/vindicatethrash – Rest In Pain!)."
Daniel, the editor of the book "Swedish Death Metal" praised your band a lot in his book. This was actually the first time I heard about you and got interested in KATALYSATOR. What do you think about this book and his words about your band? I mean he said you look like NIHILIST and sound like GROTESQUE. Can it become better??
"The book is the best book that has ever been written. A lot of people have said they found us through the book. We owe him big time for that! No, and especially not from such an experienced man as he is."
Honestly, judging your photos, I’d say you look more like GROTESQUE than NIHILIST. What kind of look do you want to have in front of the audience?
"We just want to look dead and disgusting, because that’s what we are."
Your band totally fits into these great times of the early nineties where tapetrading and editing fanzines was big in the scene. What do you think about these times and the fact that you missed them due to your age?
"I think that the soul and passion that was in there back in those days are lost, and that’s our goal, to bring it back. So I don’t tend to think that way. I socialize with outlandish people through writing letters and I trade tapes. Not because I want to be oldschool, but because it fits me. That scene fits us, that’s it."
Anyhow, what makes this time and the bands from this period so interesting for you?
"They are not soulless crap like all the faggot scum bands of the current so called scene."
Is it correct that you also play in the Metal band IN SOLITUDE and Hompa seems to play in DEGIAL? Tell us some details about these bands and are you probably playing in more bands besides them? Which band is the one which you take the most serious?
"Yes, me and P.Pestilence play in the Occult Heavy Metal band IN SOLITUDE and the Grind band DEFORMED. And Hompa plays in DEGIAL who plays Dark Death Metal. I take no band more serious than another. It works out."
Your first live experience was at the Uppsala Grind / Death Metal festival "Uppsala Blodbad". What can you tell about it?
"It sucked totally, just a lot of short-haired grinders who fix gigs with fake Grindcore bands there. But it was fun and a lot of support that night."
Did you have more live appearances until now? How were the reactions from the crowd and were you satisfied with your appearances?
"We have not played that much but when we do it we do it in 1000%. We blow the crowds minds out. We played our best gig in a church actually; we were drunk and sang about the devil."
Regarding your lyrics you wrote that the "lyrics were just about zombies and stuff like that". How serious do you take the lyrics and with which topics do they deal right now?
P.Pestilence: "Since I write the lyrics I will answer this question. I try to create a feeling and visions with my lyrics at this point. It deals with the deepest abyss, the darkest death, places and paths were no man has set his foot. So, the lyrics are at this point as important as the music. The old lyrics were just mediocre zombie tales like any other band, but as the music develops the lyrics do."
OK Gotte, we reached the end of this interview now. Thanks for answering! Hope you enjoyed the questions? Anything left to say?
"Don’t support all these Death Metal bands that are saying there just oldschool, it isn’t about being “oldschool” it’s about being Death Metal! TO THE DEATH."