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They are polish, they have just released the debut album "Gods Of Thousand Souls", but their sound is a mix of Scandinavian and American styles, I'm talking about Empatic.
Welcome on Aristocrazia Webzine guys, let's begin giving us some info about your history. How was your passion for death metal born? What made you think "this is what i want to play" and why?
Maciej: Hello to all the readers of Aristocrazia. Our childhood is an experience of different music cultures. Every one of us had been searching his own place on earth before we were set on the right path. Actually, we listened to everything we had access to. That's why we play what we play, and that is broadly defined death metal. It's inside us, the Polish. Poles need to somehow vent their emotions after all the wars which didn't spare us in history…heheh
Your style draws from the most evil death metal, but also from the melodic and the groove scenes, which are your main listenings? Is there a band which influenced you in the composition of the album?
There are five of us in the band and everyone has their notes in the head. Here I have to quote one of our reviewers: "The guys have their music tastes as broad as the wingspan of the white eagle". There are plenty of bands we've taken as our models: In Flames, Type O Negative, Sepultura, Pantera, Soulfly, Machine Head, Slayer, Death… So in our music you can find various styles.
Personally I didn't find any evident defect in your work, it has nice refrains and good songs, someones which hit staking their all on impact and other ones which vary alternating well-known but still effective formulas with an involving Death-Thrash, also in the second part of "Gods Of Thousand Souls" there are tracks like "So What?" and "Fulfilled Dreams". Is there a song which is dearer to you than the others, or a song which you consider the best to make someone understand your music?
We put all our hearts and souls into the "Gods Of Thousand Souls" album. Thus each song is very dear to us. As I said before, there are five of us and our music is varied. To promote the album we chose "Green Mile" and maybe this is the song which represents Empatic.
Who works at the instrumental side and who at the lyrics? Which is the process you follow to make a song?
The process itself is quite simple. Everyone writes down their notes. Someone has an idea, a basis for a song. He brings it for the rehearsal. While we're playing, we recall some old riffs that would match the song we're creating. Sometimes something new and fresh comes up. The lyrics are written by me and Włodas. That's the whole process. As simple as that.
I really appreciated Maciej's performance, especially his deep growl, are there any singers which inspired you?
Thanks a lot. I surely won't call myself a singer 'cause that's just a too big word for such a screamer. I would really like to know how to sing but to be honest I just scream bloody murder. Some people like it and others don't. But in connection with front men, I have my favorites: Mike Patton, Freddie Mercury, Chuck Schuldiner, Anders Friden (In Flames), Philip Anselmo, Howard Jones (KSE), Piotr "Peter" Wiwczarek (Vader), Piotr Rogucki (Coma).
I found some of your live shows on youtube, you work well together and the tracks were well-played. How much was useful that period on stage to improve your feeling? Even if it is a debut it is really mature.
Thanks. The Empatic musicians are people who have a wide experience in live performances from their previous bands. The time we've spent together in Empatic, that is five years, is the time of many gigs with such great bands as Pandemonium, Frontside, Neurothing. Every concert, every conversation with the musicians was an important experience. All we knew was that we wanted to release an album. After a few years of gathering observation, we established the sound that is on the album.
"Enola Gay" is a historic track of the '80s generation, why did you make a (good) cover of it?
The idea of recording "Enola Gay" cover arose at the time when Włodas and I worked together in his father's firm. Of course, we both heard the song before. The time passed by much faster when there was interesting music on the radio. That's how we got this idea to make the OMD hit in metal version. Covers, in general, are a dodgy subject. It's not hard to fuck up the song, that's why we were a bit worried about how the song would be accepted at concerts. But it turned out that it's great. All the grinning faces of ardent metal fans when they hear the song, priceless. Not everyone realizes that the seemingly happy tune doesn't reflect the story in the song. It's actually a true story of a WWII bomber called "Enola Gay" which threw an atomic bomb named "Little Boy" down on Hiroshima. And that, we all know, changed the mankind history forever.
You are one of the many bands of the always growing polish scene, how are the relations with other bands? Do you feel yourself to be a part of it? Are still the great bands such as Vader, Behemoth and Hate which make a difference or does the generational turnover take shape?
Heh… Behemoth, Vader, Decapitated, Hate. They represent a really high level. The bands are known all over the world. We have just recorded our first album so we know our place. We have people to learn from and that's the most important. I don't think we actually match these bands with our repertoire, hehe. It would be great to share the stage with at least one of them. Whether a generational turnover will happen, well, there are a lot of awesome bands in Poland and I think some more will join them.
Robert works with his label for the underground scene, how did you come in contact with him? How is working with someone who lives this music as a lifestyle and not as a way to earn money?
After having recorded the material, we looked for an editor in many places. The results were poor. The bigger companies, and I don't mean the biggest ones, are scheduled for years. Somehow we didn't fit there with our music, etc. We had met Robert several times and he saw our live performance. I wonder what he thinks of the cooperation with us, hehe. I think it's a pure agreement. As you said, Robert lives this music, music is his life. What else can I say?
How is metal's situation today? Are there any sounds or something else which you don't like at all and other things which you think should have more highlighted?
Metal music is treated nowadays as the worst of all evil. People think that under the influence of this kind of music its fans are aggressive, insane, that they murder or commit suicide. That's ridiculous. What I regret most is that in the mass media there are no TV programs or radio broadcasts for metal music fans. This sort of music was pushed down not only to underground but under-underground. Now there's so much this pink and plastic music all around that it makes me sick. And I don't even know whether people are fooling themselves or if they're being stupefied.
Today it's easy to find bands which debut with a full length without having recorded any demos or promos once was difficult even to self release a 3 tracks tape. What changed in your opinion? How much is good this trend of self producing longer releases which, unluckily are often not so good? Do they demand of having all at once? What about climbing the career ladder?
It used to be hard because there weren't so many record companies as we have now. If you have money, you can do almost anything. Record an album, release it the way you want, choose the cover, and share the stage with the greatest bands. Money has such a power that we often don't even realize it. Fact, it would be natural to climb the career ladder step by step. But it's not always like that. When you're involved with a record company, some ways are already paved, and it's obvious that your album will get where it's supposed to get. When it comes to self releasing, hmm… I don't know, you should ask someone who tried that, if they're satisfied or not. And the music on albums, well, even that released by a company is often not so good.
Is there nepotism or influence peddling in the metal scene?
In every aspect of our life, whether it's music or acting, or something else, we have to deal with this kind of phenomenon. It's a standard. We live in the times when everyone wants to get as much money as they can. Once they used to take bribes and now they officially say how much it costs to perform before the star. Pulling the strings and influential friends have always been and will be.
How much are important medias such as social network and file sharing on the reputation of a band? What do you think about these two elements?
The time of the Internet, social network, file sharing, is a norm nowadays. I think social network is the fastest way to promote and advertise bands. All the information on Facebook, Myspace and other of that kind are spreading as fast as the latest gossip. The moment you fart, people on the other side of the world will hear you. Whereas file sharing, well, I think it's unavoidable. We all lead a very comfortable lifestyle, you don't have to leave the house to listen to music which you can download, listen to, and it’s all for free. But I believe that if someone wants to buy a record, they will do it anyway.
The promotion of our album is actually just starting. It'll set off at full speed in New Year. It's not a problem to record "something", you need to stand up for it by performing live. We're gonna give a lot of gigs, and surely there'll be a tour. We'll see if it's also outside Poland, we'd really like that, but time will tell.
Printed paper vs webzine, two different ways to live the music we love, which are their ups and downs?
People used to hang the posters and press cuttings of their favorite bands on the walls, or stick them in notebooks. When you were disappointed by the band, you just had to tear the poster off the wall and crumple it cause you didn't need that shit anymore. Or you could draw glasses or mar the face on the picture. So printed paper has its advantages. On the other hand, a webzine is a much faster way to reach the potential fans. It's available any time, with no effort at all. Just click and you're on your favorite band's website. However, in case there's a blackout, I lit a candle and the paper rules. Each has its good and bad sides.
Are there any confirmed dates that you'd like to tell to our readers? Will we see you in Italy?
Confirmed dates, well, there's a schedule and the dates will soon be released. For more details, visit our official website and follow the latest news, also on Myspace and Facebook. More details in the coming year.
Thanks for the time spent with us, the last message for our readers is up to you.
Empatic is sending their regards from cold Poland to all the readers and fans of heavy metal. I hope we'll have a chat over beer in Italy some day. Maybe we'll attract some souls on "Gods Of Thousand Souls". Thanks for the interview. Regards.