Poland seems to have quite an impressive thrash / extreme metal scene with plenty of long-standing bands. Why do you think this is?
It’s a hard question. I don’t know. I guess there is something in our mentality. Because of our history, we got used to many different, uncomfortable life situations. It has influence on people. Metal music is a good channel of expression to shout out our frustrations or rebel against something let it be religion or government or anything. It’s brutal and emotional music, it needs strong personalities, rebels, idealists. And there seem to be quite plenty around.
In the earlier days did you find it hard to get noticed amongst the crowd?
Beginnings are always hard, but it happened quite fast in our case. We used to play brutal death metal and we got noticed immediately. Soon we recorded a few demos and the first album. We were quite known in the Polish underground and we influenced lots of other bands at that time. We found it quite hard to get noticed in the west. It happened only around 2001 when we signed our first contract to a western label.
Do you feel the support you gained in your home country helped push you internationally?
It helped us a lot and we got all the necessary experience. If people here hadn’t known us, we wouldn’t have signed any contract outside Poland. After that we have gone to play our first European tour and our international career has really started. But it’s another story. Mostly our determination and hard work took us to the level, we are now.
How have things changed over the last 23 years for the band from a personal viewpoint? I know Adam’s the only one who’s been there from the start!
A lot of things have changed. We know much more about the music industry and how it works. We are much more experienced now and we have made a big progess when it comes to our music, visual side, contents etc. Finally we are much more focused on the band as a serious part of our lives. It’s our priority. Once it was a dream of a few teenagers, now it’s a machine driven by devoted, self-confident and focused professional.
What is new with Solarflesh? In your eyes, what makes it really stand out from the crowd?
Solarflesh is the longest and most diverse album we have ever done. It sounds more organic and raw than any of our previous records. It has dark and “dense” atmosphere with lots of samples and additional vocals in the background. For the first time in our history, we’ve had guests on a record.
One of them is a Greek vocalist Androniki Skoula (Chaostar) who did excellent job in two songs adding some “hellenic” atmosphere to them. We also invited guitarist Mateusz Szemraj who played an Arabic lute in the title track and did one guitar solo. At the end of the record you will hear a few experimental dark-ambient- industrial tracks that sound like hypnotic mantras. I believe this album contains some of the best songs we have ever written.
You have quite a comprehensive European Tour coming up with Hypocrisy and Essence. What can people expect from your live show?
Of course we are going to focus on the new album this time, we’ll play at least four songs from ‘Solarflesh’. When it comes to live shows, we always deliver extreme and atmospheric performance. We are well prepared, and we have charged our batteries enough to change each single show in no-compromising battle. It’s gonna be a blast! I can’t wait for this tour.
With eight albums behind you, how easy do you find it to pick material out for a live set? And on a tour do you tend to play the same songs each night?
It depends. When we play older songs it’s really easy, we just need one or two rehearsals, that’s it. Whenever we’re working on a new setlist, especially including new songs we need more time to prepare everything. Anyway, we prepare different setlists on each tour or show. Sometimes we can play longer as a headliner or we just have more time than usually so we can play something extra. If we play a tour, we have the same setlist every evening (with small changes sometimes).
Your 2011 US tour schedule looks exhausting! Would you consider doing something that intense again?
Oh yes! It was very long trip – around 86 shows on two separate tours with a few gigs between. It was really hard and we felt exhausted after all that but we did this. And we can do this in the future, for sure. It’s amazing thing to get experience, you can learn a lot. Such intense tour again? If it was worth it I would go for this and I think the rest of the guys too.
Thanks for you time :)
Thank you for the interview!
[Hate’s new album, Solarflesh, is out now on Napalm Records]
- Hate – Solarflesh (2013) (brushvox.wordpress.com)