VULTURE basically came, saw and conquered! With last year’s demo turned EP “Victim To The Blade” they easily grabbed the spot of the newcomer of the year. This year it’s time for them to mutilate the masses under “The Guillotine”. Since there aren’t that many VULTURE interviews around, it was about time to have an in-depth chat with axe-man / drummer Genözider about everything VULTURE!
Hey! Thanks for taking your time for doing this. Since there haven’t been that many in-depth VULTURE interviews, maybe you can tell us how the band kicked off? Is VULTURE more like a band that started from a concept or from riffs / songs which didn’t fit anywhere else (since I know you’re in like a zillion other bands and projects)?
“VULTURE basically started with me quitting OBSESSÖR. Speed / Thrash Metal has been the music I feel home in since day one, so it was more a necessity to get things going with another band / project. The four gents that form VULTURE have known each other a rather long time beforehand. We wanted to work something out with two guitar players, so we could add classical twin-melodies to our music. I’ve always been in love with Steeler’s variety of vocal perfomances, he was the only singer of choice. We started mapping our a basic idea of where we wanna go with our music, before starting to write anything. A thought out concept felt right, we didn’t just want to start head over heels and end up with a demo that isn’t 100% perfect for us.”
Why VULTURE and who came up with that name? Was it intentionally to choose a name that’s a bit more “standard” rather than something really exotic like let’s say label mates QUADE LAHÜE?
“We were searching for something catchy and menacing. VULTURE simply sounded right. Before we had a long period in which we couldn’t agree to a name. The name VULTURE itself isn’t bound to a special meaning or metaphor.”
How did the “Victim To The Blade” material come together? Since I guess you’re the main creative force behind the band (please correct me if I’m wrong) I can imagine it was all written before there was even a full line-up. I once read somewhere that you guys are not the most motivated bunch of lads when it comes to rehearsing, maybe you can add something to that.
“No, we certainly aren’t, haha. Nope, we started the songwriting once we were sure where would like to end and exactly how we want to sound like. The songwriting itself is paired with a lot of discussions and reflections. We’re not writing anything in the rehearsal room. You gotta write songs when you feel creative and inspired, not when you’re forced into one room for a couple of hours.”
Since all of VULTURE’s members have been in other bands as well I guess the recording sessions for the demo / EP have been quite easy and laid back. Maybe you can tell us something about how it went down?
“The recordings for “Victim To The Blade” were a lot of fun. We wanted to have everything done in two days, including the mix. We were extremely happy with the results right away. We forced Marco, our studio engineer at Hellforge Studio, to do the mix on sunday evening after a weekend of hard work and he killed it immediately.”
Did you expect it to be as successful as it in the end was?
“No, not at all. Of course we were sure to have a great demo in our hands. But to have it released by a proper label on all formats and having to reprint those two times already was definitely not what we planned. Felt really great to get such an immense response but also definitely put a lot of pressure on us which we didn’t know before.”
Who came up with the brilliant cover idea for the High Roller version? To me, and probably almost anybody else, it has this tremendous Giallo vibe. Are you guys into genre movies? I mean you also use a lot of horror themed synth snippets on your records so I guess there has to be some proper interest (and if so, maybe you can add your all-time top five?).
“Velio Josto, who’s drawing everything for us, sure has a great and gifted hand for these romantic and cheesy horror artworks. Totally dig his work as well. We definitely love the atmosphere and mostly also the soundtracks of all that old horror classics. It has so much in common with Heavy Metal. That’s why it’s suiting our music so well, I guess. There are a lot of great movies out there, but it’s not like we’re experts or geeks for trashy genre classics. If I gotta name some of the movies I love the most, that fit this genre somehow, I’d probably go with a lot of Carpenter stuff, like ‘The Fog’ or ‘The Thing’ and so on. I’m more into older suspense movies. But also here, my sort of name dropping would sound like AC/DC, METALLICA, SLAYER, to anyone who’s really into movies, haha.”
People who have bought your record and been to your gigs might have noticed that there’s a difference when it comes to the line-up. How come there’s these two different versions of VULTURE? Does it maybe have to do with playing on stage and recording in a studio being two completely different pair of shoes?
“It’s not two different versions or anything. Just like many bands, we’re being supported by an additional drummer live. That’s basically it. The reason for me being responsible for the drums in the studio so far is a rather practical. We’ve spent an entire year writing the eight songs for “The Guillotine”. Since we’re all living far apart of each other, meeting for rehearsals is very hard. If we would have to rehearse our songs with a drummer before our recordings, that would easily take another year at least, I guess. If you want to keep a certain momentum you built up with a release, that’s not an option.”
Your very first gig was on Austrian soil if I’m right. How was it to bring those songs to the stage for the first time? Did it click right from the start between all of the members?
“Raging Death Date was our first show, Austria came right afterwards. We were heavily nervous. To play the VULTURE songs live for the first time was a tough task for us. Playing sloppier BULLDOZING BASTARD tunes was a lot easier and smoother for us, haha!”
After that you played prestigious festivals like the Raging Death Date and Live Evil in London. How did that turn out?
“Totally killer! Raging Death Date was a great way to present the band for the first time. Live Evil was so intense as well. I’ve never been to London or England before. Love that place! Metal Assault was also a really huge thing for us. Unfortunately I was struck by a fever and couldn’t enjoy it that much.”
Is VULTURE planning on becoming a full-blown touring band or do you prefer playing one-off gigs instead to keep it something special as it’s the case with many other bands.
“We’re all bound to our jobs. That’s why right now we gotta focus on single shows on weekends. We got a lot of touring offers already and had to decline all of them. We’ll see what the future holds.”
When did you start writing the material for “The Guillotine”? Was there any pressure to keep up with the quality of the old material? Was the writing process the same or did some changes, or let’s say progressions, occur. To me personally the songs from both “Victim…” as well as “The Guillotine” have the same feeling which is why I could imagine that most of the material has been written around the same period of time.
“A lot of pressure, yep! We started writing right after the release of “Victim…”. We felt like we had to top the EP songwriting wise, so the discussions about single riffs, bars or even notes became endless and sometimes also really annoying. I guess the final result speaks for itself. A lot of pressure fell off of us, once the files were sent to the pressing plant. But we surely know better now.”
Marco Brinkman has again been the guy you chose for recording. What’s the history you share with him and how did you get in touch to begin with? Any significant changes when you compare the “Victim…” sessions to those for “The Guillotine”?
“Marco has been a friend of us since many years now. He played bass in BEER PRESSURE in our early years nearly 10 years ago now. Afterwards he started his career as a sound designer and turned out to be the only weapon of choice for us. Not only because he’s our friend, but also because he knows and understands music perfectly and is able to get authentic sounds with modern technology. That’s something not everybody’s able to. The recordings for the album were also done under the same pressure that we had during the songwriting. Everything had to be perfect. We suffered a lot from Marco’s ideas of a “good take” and he suffered a lot from our thoughts about a “good sound”. The mixing phase took four months. He had to do a month-long break to be able to get back into it, haha. Results are speaking for themselves, I guess. The sound is simply perfect for us.”
What has the future in store for VULTURE after the official release of “The Guillotine”? Is there anything planned you maybe can tell us already?
“We of course hope to reach as many people as possible with our record. Nothing’s mapped out so far. We’re looking forward to a lot of great shows around Europe.”
What’s the general goal for VULTURE? I suppose world domination is the very least.
“The goal for ourselves is of course to keep our level of songwriting and to not lose on energy. Maybe we should become better musicians as well, haha!”
Now to something a bit more general. What do you think of nowadays scene? Do you think it is very thriving with a lot of creativity behind it or is it more like a copy / paste kinda thing with everybody trying to fulfill the standards and cliches? I’m asking this because I think your songs are very traditional and “conservative” in a way however they are sounding so incredibly fresh that it almost seems like you’ve re-invented the genre or at least its approach.
“Of course there’s a lot of copy cat kind of music being released. But there’s also many gems popping up again and again. A lot of it being from Scandinavia. Im thinking about ANTICHRIST’s “Forbidden World” or RANGER’s “Knights Of Darkness” and I’m really looking forward to the first BLACK MAGIC full length. However, most bands just try to sound like “that one riff from NIFELHEIM”. If you want to do authentic Metal, you gotta dig way deeper, I guess. Get back to the seventies and see what bands inspired to create Heavy Metal. That’s what we are trying to do.”
Top five current bands?
“JONAH QUIZZ, BLACK MAGIC, RANGER’s EPs, the LEGACY demo, SOUNDHOUSE DEFECTS.”
Top five all time bands?
“Don’t really have all time faves. PRIEST, SLAYER, dunno.”
One of my favorite questions is who would you play a gig with / go on tour with when there wouldn’t be any boundaries and restrictions. Choose whatever band(s) from whatever era, dead or alive. Your perfect package.
“Definitely Baloff’s EXODUS, SLAYER during the “Hell Awaits” time and maybe very early METALLICA.”
Are Ibanez Destroyers the (un)holy grail?
“Maybe, haha! We like the way of us looking more like a militia working for Steeler, our frontman. The right outfit is very important for a good show, I guess.”
Alright, I guess we can call this a wrap then. Thanks for doing this interview and in case you wanna add something please do so right now.
“You’re welcome, Marco! Thanks for the chat!”