vendredi 26 avril 2013

Amebix Interview 2011 or 2012 ?

AMEBIX interview for SEDTION mag France ( by Flox )

Sedtion: Hey Stig, it's been over 20 years of silence for AMEBIX! The creation of 'Sonic Mass' has been quite a surprise for alot of people. Why have you waited so long to make a new record ? When and how did the idea start out ?
well it has been a while i guess.and intitially we kind of ground to a halt in 1987 after just getting nothing back for so long and people didnt understand what we were trying to do ..its different now ,but back then there was nobody else on the same path as us....this came about after doing a dvd about Amebix and our lives from the early days ..a tour came from meeting Roy and us all cliking so well together ..and after and during tours we would come up with ideas but after i came up with the title [sonic mass]we all had a focus for our ideas..also we had already recorded the redux versions of old songs that Roy mixed and recorded so we knew that he would be able to make something special out of all these ideas floating around .. 
Sedition: At the time of your revival you guys decided to bring in Roy Maygora ( Nausea / Soulfly ) into the band! How did this happen, and was the first plan just to do some gigs or had you already the will to re record some songs and have the earge to make a new record ?
we met Roy through a e mail contact of Robs   ..a woman called Alicia introduced him to us ..and he was really excited to play with Amebix as he was an old fan of the band ...i had heard of him from his work with Soulfly and various different bands so i knew his reputation as a great drummer and multi talented musician ,but as soon as we started playing together it was like we had been together for years ,we had a great connection and he understands what we are trying to do ....its was just going to be a one off with him to rerecord some old stuff but it was so inspiring that we ended up coming out of our self imposed retirement and after playing together off and on for a couple of years we started thinking like a brand new band ..and recording songs after or during tours ..all over the place 
Sedition: When 'Sonic Mass' came out people have been quite sceptic about your new LP! I've read a few reviews and reactions of people saying your record is a bit too polished and much closer to a KILLING JOKE sound rather than what they were expecting from AMEBIX. How do you feel about this ? Has having Roy in the band been a big influence to this change or is it mostly from the fact that you have 20 years of musicianship behind you and a different musical approach these days ?
personally i dont care what people think   if i did then i would have given up years ago and not started Amebix at all..people didnt like us when we started, and there will always be people that dont like what we are doing ...thats fine   dont buy our records no one is forcing you to ...i dont make music for other peoples approval that would be pointless ..we have always been about being true to ourselves that is what makes us different we are not here to cater to anybodys idea of what they think we should sound like ..we epitomise  the true spirit of punk rock in our music [originality/ progression..ect ] rather than trying to conform to some box like musical catagories so that it will be nice and safe and easy to digest and label..Roy has been a big influence on what we do because he has so many skills as a musician ..there are things that would have been impossible to do before that he has made possible now definately ..
Sedition: Still about this new album 'Sonic Mass' initially this record was announced to come out on your good friends labels AT and PE. Why a change to Easy Action ? Are you satisfied today with your choice ? 
 it     it was originaly going to come out on both labels one doing digital and the other doing vinyl ...but for one reason or another it didnt work out .....also we wanted to do things in our own country again rather than it being done in the US ....and this is where we have ended up ..although this would not have been my personal choice ...we must make the best of it i am hopefull after all the shit we have been through ..i hope it works out 
Sedition: The song and vidéo of 'Knights of The Black Sun' ( by Andy Lefton ) have been stunning as well as the 12" record that came out for that! I imagine it quite hard to put images on music and lyrics, how did the imagery come together ? What was the idea behind the whole vidéo ? How was it meant to be interpreted ?
      i had little or no input on the video i cant answer that one im afraid 
Sedtion: I know you've been involved in Zygote for years but what else has been going on during AMEBIX's hiatus ? What have ex-members been up to ? Are you all still in touch with each other ? 
       we sometimes see  some of the old members at gigs or whatever ..but we all live in different parts of the world from each other even the current line up is  in  Scottland / California and west country UK respectively getting together for a quick jam these days takes a lot of organisation ..but when we do we all spend time together and things develop naturaly they should really i guess...i have been doing different projects on and of for the entire time   with different people or just lately solo projects as im just  starting to record my own stuff...whats been going on for me in the' hiatus'  would take a fairly long book to describe [which im actually thinking about writing one day ]   but suffice to say    life is difficult and music has helped me through it a great deal for everyone else i dont really know what they have been doing other than Robs amazing swordsmith business that he has become a world leader at 
Sedition: AMEBIX has been a huge influence on the Crust punk mouvement in the late 80's and throughout all the years. You've been pioneers in a special imagery for the artwork and metaphoric lyrics. Since the lyrics are not printed in your new LP can you give us a global view of what you wanted to come out of your new record lyrically and visually ? Has this new sound brought you a new following ?
we wanted to make something that would reflect our past present and predict our futures ....Rob is a truly great writer of imagery in my opiion one of the most talented lyric writers alive [dont tell him i said that though ].while my thing is making atmospheric music im not great at lyrics...but as usual we wanted to tap into certain ideas and archetypes and i believe we have succeeded in doing so ...we have made something from nothing ... and that is a good thing 
Sedition: Going back to the release of 'Redux', were those titles chosen because you think those four songs are those that represent best the band ? 'No Gods, No Master's' taken from the anarchist leitmotiv and in the song 'Chain Reaction' has really been attached to the bands philosophy. Do you still feel the same politicaly after all this time ? After your passage through CRASS records on the 'Bullshit Detector' comp, the Bristol squatting mouvement of the early 80's, the Manoir of Dartmoor. How as individuals do you feel you have evolved ? Does the DIY punk mouvement still feel the same for you down the road ?
in obviously things have changed in the world a lot but people are still the same as they were back then and my beliefs are still pretty much unchanged views on life and humanity have always been along the lines of the things i felt to be true as a child ..polititians come and go fashions change ...but i believe in freedom of mind and body to do youre own will with providing you are not hurting others .... 
Sedition: It's also cool to see a proper reedtion of the 'Monolith' LP that originally came out in 87' on Heavy Metal records now available again from 'Back on Black'. Re reading your biography on your website it's stated that the collapse of Heavy Metal records and your last tour in 87' saw the decline of the band. Is this the reality of things and do you think it was a good call at the time ?
i dont think  Heavy Metal records collapsed as such but as far as i know they are still chugging along quite happily despite never paying us for monolith .. as for the band even a painter needs money for brushes and canvas ..we werent getting anything back to keep us going so we stopped the time it made sense and yeah i think it was a good idea to knock it on the head then ..
Sedition: Coming back to your song 'Largactyl' talking about the diagnosis of your first drummers 'paranoiac / schizophreniac' state. What was the idea through the song and how do you feel about 'Modern Medecine' and the way people are dealt with ?
that is one of the  only lyrics that i wrote for was about a lot of people around then that were being messed up by this horrible stuff and also about what is sane and what is not ..treatment for mental problems is  very primitive and underfunded in my opinion  especially as mental health is the measure of weather society is functioning properly or not ... is it life that makes one mad or are we born to it ?  is modern living fundamentaly  bad for ones brain ?
Sedition: For sure AMEBIX has a much bigger following and opportunities to play bigger venues than when you where initially around. Does this make things easier to live with the band ? Do you feel comfortable with the way the band has gained in notority throughout time ? Does this make you approach things any differently these days ? Is AMEBIX in anyway more stable financially ?
no/ yes/ no and no 
Sedition: Rob moved to the Isle Of Skye that seems very epic as a place to be. And has also become a self taught swordsman! This medival / pagan lifestyle is also a good part of the band. How did this happen ? What attracts you with this way of life and imagery ? Is this swordsmanship a good way of making a living or is it essentially an artform ? Who are typical buyers ? Is there a way to see Rob's work ? [i think ]
Sedition: What are the subjects today that you would like to approach with AMEBIX ? What kind of subjects inspire you to continue writing music ? Are there new AMEBIX projects coming up in the near future ? Tours ?
Amebix is inspired by life and living itself, the difficulties and triumphs ,the will to power the potential of mankind to be more than it is ..i am inspired to continue writing music simply because i have so much more to say with it and music is  what keeps me sane ...ha ha if it was about money i would have got a 'real'job years ago 
Sedition: Thanx for your time Stig for this interview, it's a pleasure having you guys inside SEDITION mag. Any last words, comments for french readers ?
my pleasure   be nice to each other    NO GODS NO MASTERS   stig c miller. 

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