Impious orgiastic and desecrating 666 gasmask salutation comrade of true kult die hard edition clear vinyl worship, haha. What has the fate decided to give you in these days of resurrection for UNGOD? Let’s start with the boring question now. Why did it take so long to see a second album spawned by your band?
"Welcome to hell my French Metalbrother! As you should know UNGOD split up in 1998 because of personal issues etc etc. In 2008 we got contacted by Hurricane (Kneel Before The Masters Throne Records) asking for a re-Issue of our debut album "Circle Of The Seven Infernal Pacts" (1993) since this was out of print for ages. Me and original singer Infamist of Tumulus had a little drinking session and I told him about the re-issue plans. We agreed that it can be done but only if there would be some extra material added to make it a more worthy issue. There was no really old material available and we needed something new. I somehow found out that our old drummer Condemptor was still active (we had not been in touch for years) and would rehearse in a neighbour town with the band MORT. I got in touch with them to tell them that I have some song ideas and if they would be interested in maybe writing 1 – 2 songs and record them as bonus tracks for the CD re-issue. They agreed and I grabbed my old bass guitar and entered the rehearsal bunker. We kinda clicked straight away and had 1 song ‘(Dark Tomb Of) Ungod’ ready after the first session. From this point on UNGOD was back and we decided that we should give it another go.The rest is history as they say. All this happened in 2008 and the line-up was: Schiekron – bulldozer bass (founding member), Condemptor – coffins (founding member), Infamist of Tumulus – voxum (founding member) and Kvaltar – chainsaw."
Obviously you’re a lot into releasing EPs and especially split EPs with many different bands. Especially lately I understood that you appreciate to share your vinyls with bands playing styles that are not linked with Black or Death Metal at all? I even heard you say that UNGOD is not to be labeled as a Black Metal band in your eyes. What bothers you so much with what Black Metal has become nowadays?
"We are coming from the good old underground scene when those split releases were a common thing. We simply like this kind of format and you get to check out 2 different bands from which 1 you might not have checked out before. Besides that, we do no split releases with bands we don’t know or are not friends with! This is no business shit here going on but dedication and support! We like to share such releases with whatever Metal style we like! Be it Doom, Death, Speed, Thrash, Heavy Metal or whatever! It’s more challenging for us to have something different on the other side of the split. This is why we have an upcoming split release with VESTAL CLARET from America who really sound completely different to us, in the end it’s all Metal, right? UNGOD plays old school extreme Metal! There is no real difference between REAL Death Metal and REAL Black Metal in my oppinion and both Genres are linked with each other. At least back in the day! We are the fist in the face of the Goatfago and jogging suit hyperspeed techno core Death Metal worshipper! The whole genre has become nothing more than a bad joke! Still some gold is left though!"
I read some good reviews about your last album “Cloaked In Eternal Darkness”. It’s interesting to see that this much respected status of the band has not been tainted at all since the release of “Circle Of The Seven Infernal Pacts”. You’ve stayed faithful to what UNGOD was appreciated for. Though it doesn’t look like the distribution or promotion of the album is visible enough… Not to mention that UNGOD doesn’t play live. Why do you prefer to keep it as a recording band only?
"It’s great to see that there are still some real maniacs out there that appreciate what we are doing. But UNGOD is pure self realization and self gratification! Those who like the actual album might as well hate the next one and vice verca! We are not here to please anyone! The never tainted respect for UNGOD comes from our non existent, role playing childish evil behaviour attitude! Nothing more nothing less! What you see / hear is what you get! No image, no poserdom! Just Metal with convinction without looking left or right. If you are looking for an fake image go on and find somewhere else! There is enough of that shit around! Many reasons for not playing live. But never say never!"
I remember you told me that you were lucky enough to attend a SLAYER gig during the “Reign In Blood” era. Of course you were young and I guess that the discovery of extreme Metal was still fresh for you at the time. But you told me that you actually were kind of scared by the violence you saw at that show. SLAYER was for sure a band to be afraid of and fascinated by in their early days. Do you think this “dangerous” edge in Metal is gone nowadays?
"I was at the Reign in Pain Tour 1987 in Würzburg, MALICE was still on the billing and everything was just crazy! They had those huge containers at the entry where they would collect weapons (knives / bulletbelts / nailstuds etc) and those were almost full! Being a 15 year old boy without big concert experience I was kinda scared.The eighties were probably more brutal than the nineties when it comes to chaos & riots. It all has calmed down with the appearance of Grunge in the early 90s replacing Metal attitude with Emo behaviour 😉 The dangerous edge in Metal is long gone! Thanx to Wacken and all that shit festivals plus bands “overdoing” their image game."
Talking about danger in music. Maybe if you had burnt a church and killed a friend around 1994 UNGOD would be THE ultimate band worshipped by kids that fantasize on silly human behaviours, haha! Seriously, how did that whole second wave of Black Metal coming from Norway impact the approach of UNGOD’s music? I mean you were obviously more influenced by CELTIC FROST, SAMAEL, SARCOFAGO and the likes, but stylistically one could feel that your music is not always far from some early DARKTHRONE Black Metal. By the way what do you think of the development of DARKTHRONE over the years?
"Maybe we would be rich now and sit in jail with alot of money, hehe. When we started out the Norsecore movement was not really going on yet. We were mainly influenced by the real old stuff (HELLHAMMER / CELTIC FROST / VENOM / BATHORY etc) and not so old stuff (ROTTING CHRIST / SAMAEL / VARATHRON / MASTERS HAMMER etc).Those bands early releases represent real Black Metal for me! Not some Norwegian trendhopper singing about ice / snow / forests and whatever shitfuck! DARKTHRONE come from the same era like us, same age of members etc. So those are the similarities.The difference is mainly that we still stick to our roots or better said we know what our band stands for musically. Nuff said!"
Were you never tempted to start a band playing Thrash, Heavy, Epic or Doom Metal? Being a Metal fan in the broadest sense, that’s intriguing me that all the other bands projects you were involved in through the years like PHLEGM or FULGOR are somehow linked to the most extreme forms of Metal. Why is extreme Metal so important to you? What made it become so natural for you to play it for all those years?
"Well, I was NEVER involved either in PHLEGM nor FULGOR! I’m simply not good enough in playing anything else than “extreme” Metal and as a whole I think playing Heavy Metal or whatever should be relinquished to those who really can come up with convincing stuff. Besides liking ALL styles of Metal the more extreme stuff is simply touching me more than some lame chickenshit that nowadays is sold as Power Metal. With more extreme stuff I do not mean explicitly talk about Thrash / Death & Black Metal but also stuff like ANVIL / RAVEN / METAL CHURCH / NASTY SAVAGE / EXCITER / RAZOR etc.That stuff was EXTREME back in the day! You know, I still live in the past a bit, hehe."
Reading the lyrics of UNGOD they are clearly some dark, occult fantasies. The figure of Satan is present but not central. Having had quite a lot of changes in your line-up, how did you approach the lyrics with the different singers? By the way, what happened with Infernal Molester who used to sing on “Cloaked In Eternal Darkness”? His voice was fucking deep and harsh; too bad he had to leave. Hopefully your new singer Tairach will prove he’s a good replacement.
"As we are not Satanists in the bands we have not really satanic lyrics but more of a blasphemous / dark and morbid kind. I mainly come up with songtitles and tell the singer what I want to express with the song. Luckily we have a very good lyric writer in Tairach now and I really don’t need to explain anything! Writing lyrics is a pain in the ass for me! Infernal Molester was kicked out for several reasons that I don’t need to spread all over the world. He is out, that’s it! Tairach is the best replacement I can think of and a dedicated Metalhead as well! You soon will hear his voice on our new stuff and you’ll be more than convinced!"
On “Cloaked In Eternal Darkness” you showed a more doomy approach on some songs. Is it a direction you will keep on following on your next songs? Don’t you feel like expressing this passion you have for Doom Metal in another band? Hehe…
"We always had Doom influences in this band from day one. Maybe this time they “shined” more throughout the material.No idea, but we do not really plan the songs, what comes out always sounds like UNGOD and we really do not have any boundaries as long as it stays in the fields of raw, uncompromising, stinking filthy UNGOD Metal! Why just play fast? Why just play slow? Maybe the next record will be fast stuff only? Who knows? And yes Mister Nathaniel, I feel like expressing this passion I have for Doom Metal in another band! So, this is world exclusive news here 😉 We formed another band playing pure fucking Doom METAL, no 70s Hippie Doom or that now trendy Occult Doom Rock, but the real thing in the tradition of CANDLEMASS / SOLITUDE AETURNUS and the likes. The Band is called DEMON PREACHER and features (surprise!): Schiekron – bass, Nathaniel – vocals, Iron Incubus – guitar and Cryptic Tormentor – drums. We have serious plans in finally starting that up in spring.We’ll see what happens!"
Your last album has also shown something new for UNGOD. The presence of guests like Iron Incubus from HELLISH CROSSFIRE, who now joined the ranks of UNGOD fulltime, spitting out gruesome guitar solos, and me with my modest vocal contribution. Having also used a Romanian singer on “În numele Metalului Est-European”, I wonder what surprises the future holds… There won’t be enough room left in your rehearsal bunker with so many people joining forces with you! Haha…
"We already had some guest appearances on the self-titled MLP from 2009.The Song ‘Dawn Of The Black Apocalypse’ features Martin Missy (PROTECTOR), Patrick Kremer (ex – WITCHBURNER) and Hurricane (ZARATHUSTRA). We like working with different people on our material and it’s always interesting to see in what the “common” UNGOD stuff can evolve by adding outside influences. On "Cloaked…" we just felt there should be some sick guitar shredding and we did it! The same goes out to the Song ‘Night Of The Forlorn Graves’. Here we simply live our passion for good old Heavy Doom Metal and we knew that your vocal style would fit in perfectly. The result justifies! The Romanian thing was pure coincidence and I think that’s perfect as well! Like I said, it’s always interesting to see what happens while working with some freaks outside the band. Nah, the bunker is big enough to have a bunch of drunkards there ;)"
In 1998 it happened that you decided to call it quits with UNGOD, but since then the band returned, and your last album really gave you a new lust to attack the trendy soulless Metal with mayhem! I heard that there are already a couple of songs already written. UNGOD is more than a hobby for you then. It has slowly become a central part in your life. How do you relate to the movie “The story of ANVIL” then? I mean in a way this music is a very good way to escape the crap of everyday life, but when it becomes so strong an essential in one’s life, is it possible that it destroys you as well?
"Lots of personal shit appeared in 1998 and I decided to leave the band and “just” be a fan. I did spend most of my sparetime answering letters and interviews giving it all for the band. Even paid one year rent for the rehearsal space out of my own pockets when the line-up was broken again, only not to lose that fucking room. So, I was kinda burned out at the end. Also writing songs became a mess and I really had to take a break. I thought they would continue without me but that was not the case. Anyways, I always had the tingle in my fingers to just enter a rehearsal room and make some noise.It took almost 10 years to get that shit together again and here we are, actually really enjoying what we are doing. UNGOD has become a central part in my life – but not THE central part! If I really don’t “feel” it anymore I will quit for sure! And yes, music is the best way to escape everydays struggles!"
I just read “Metalion: The Slayer Mag Diaries” at the moment, and what I really like is the childish enthusiasm, the human being you can sense behind each word written in this zine. A lot of the early Metal zines from the 80s were pretty poor in quality when it comes to the writing style and the interest of the interviews, but what counted was the frenzy around this new form of Metal that headed toward the extremities… Sadly I see that after the damage caused by the second wave of Black Metal extremities in the Metal style became rather a sort of stupid run for the most evil posing… And that still works awfully well today. In a way I think UNGOD is one of the very few bands linked to the Black Metal style that reflects this real Metal attitude. Being involved in Metal in all its forms since the early 80s, how could you compare the Schiekron from the days when he was still innocent, pure and named Oliver, and the Schiekron of today that still fights against all odds?
"Sometimes this “scene” looks more like a fucking competition where everyone wants to be better or more important than the other. I have more patches, my records are the rarest etc. There is not really a difference between the young and old Schiki 😉 Still enthusiastic, still fan to the bone – still crazy! Maybe a bit more relaxed and not as hotblooded like I was as a teenie, hehe."
Well, I am a silly fucker and I’m sure that I forgot to ask you tons of interesting things, so as I know you’re a pretty nice guy, I’m sure you will take the opportunity to add anything useful, intellectual and highly humoristic as the epitaph to this little chat. Cheerz and beerz, dear devil preacher!
"Thanx alot Nathaniel – for support and above all your friendship! I really look forward for our next drinking session at Keep it True Festival and moreover some amorous adventures between you and me, haha. Look out for upcoming releases: UNGOD / VESTAL CLARET – Split tape (out in March), "Chaos, Conquest & Defiance" compilation CD (tba), UNGOD / PROTECTOR – Split 10” or 12” (tba), UNGOD / CRUCIFIER (US) – Split (tba). No merch available right now from me – check your local distributor or whatever fuck!"