Monday 20 July 2009

Blue Jeans Festival '96

Ted Pearce
Illustrations by Ted Pearce

It was the summer of 1996 and me and some mates decided to head to the Blue Jeans festival in Athboy, County Meath. As we weren’t quite eighteen yet and considering how difficult it was to acquire alcohol underage, the only option was to buy speed.

Well on this particular occasion I had a pretty good hook up and said I’d sort out some mates. As usual it was fucking long and when he came through he was like, ‘Sorry buddy, no speed, here’s some E’s’. They didn’t want pills. But, fearing I’d look a total dickhead, I handed over the cash and thought, fuck it, I’ll work something out.

Some of my mates hadn’t even done pills yet and they would have been adverse to the idea so I thought, fuck it, they’ll never know the difference. So I went about crushing up all the pills in mixing them evenly with some tasteless white tablets I’d found in my house and dispensed the mix into wraps. I was now officially going to spike all my mates. Well done. Anyway we took the specially arranged bus out to Athboy from Navan with all our mates, most knocking back two litres of Magners and asking of the whereabouts of their speed.

I knew a few people on the bus would want a bit, taste the mix and notice the difference either making me look like a cunt or giving the dude I got the ’speed’ off a bad rep. So I said I was meeting him in Athboy. When we got there I said I had to meet him on the edge of town, so I took my mate Stumpy with me. He was going to keep the dick whilst I sorted all the speed.

I told him what was going on and when we got out of eyesight of everyone we went up this alleyway between housing estates. I began taking the wraps out of my socks when this massive Garda, a real pig looking one too, came up behind me and was all, ‘What’s going on here lads?’. in that typical condescending cop tone. Fuck. I wanted to kill Stumpy. There was no escaping this one. Anyways he led us to the cop car, no cuffs, and all I could imagine was court, judges and my dad’s disappointment/furious anger. Fuck this.

Ted Pearce

He told me to stand on one side of the car while he put Stumpy in the door on the far side of the car. Again I could feel the impending rage of my father and I just began running. The Gard was a little hesitant before chasing after me and just shouted, ‘Come back! You’re only making it worse!’, I just kept running I didn’t really look back. He was in his mid to late forties and pretty overweight. He’d never catch me. However as this was the edge of town in the middle of nowhere there was going to be a lot of running. And there was a new estate being erected too so he was chasing me through the foundations of a soon to be housing estate.

I can remember clearing a massive trench and after that looked back and he’d given up. This would’ve been amazing news could I have gotten back to Navan somehow but I couldn’t. There is no public transport in rural Ireland. Coupled with the fact I was too freaked out to walk the road fearing there’d be a car out looking for me. Separating Athboy and Navan was pure bogland. And I’d just come out in some new Air Max’s. Predominantly white ones. Possibly white 501’s too, it was ‘96.

I just remembered as he hadn’t searched me I still had a bunch of shit on me so I decided to just do the whole lot in one drop which was about two pills, maybe more. Anyway long story short I managed to trudge through fields of quagmire, bog, sheep, cows all fucking sorts and by the time I got near Navan, it was dark. I was completely wired to the moon the whole way through this ordeal too, stopping occasionally to talk to cows and the local wildlife.

When I plucked up the courage to go back on the road, the minute I stumbled over the field gate a car pulled up almost instantaneously, the lights blinding me in the process. They were Navan Gards and were asking about a local robbery at a house and judging by the state of me decided I was the culprit. I fed them some line about having just split with my girlfriend and I was out having a walk to clear my head. They bought it rather easily and drove me back into town. I only then thought, fuck, what happened to Stumpy? Well, as soon as the Gard started chasing after me it occurred to him to do the same, however his only escape was into the town which was full of police due to the Blue Jeans festival, but he went to a junior disco, as they were so called, swapped clothes, borrowed a hat and headed back later that night on the bus we came out on. I learned fuck all from this episode other than always run from the police and never rip off your mates. Which is something I guess.

Friday 10 July 2009

Fenriz aka DJ V.K.O.M. presents... Trapped Under Vice, Vol. I

Back when I started doing my weekly blog for Vice at the beginning of the year I really wanted to interview Darkthrone's Fenriz for it, the reasons are pretty obvious, but he declined stating a rigorous interviewing schedule that he had just finished. I was a little bummed out but we kept in contact and he would tip me off on so many bands I would never have heard of without his vast knowledge of music. Anyway, I then tried to get him to DJ to no avail. When I heard the Actual Pain mixtape I was naturally lost for words and asked him if there was any possibility he could do one for Vice. No problem he said. He would love to. And here it is. Intro from the man himself...

First words. I started the comp by thinking of some acts that should definitely be on there. Then I mulled it over for a week. I then sat down to structure it, and I had several darlings to kill and new ones to include. I am not making a ONE STYLE comp here, like 'occult thrash' or something. I chose numbers mostly from bands that are/were old and rough and soulfully sounding, but thrash is one of the most intense genres, so it sort of HAS TO be varied, WHEN I MAKE 78+ minutes here!

I was thinking of dropping 3 of the songs to make it more like a hit parade, but one needs some ups and downs in life ha ha. Better to leave the mix untampered with. is sort of a whole labyrinth of songs, a world to get lost in.

I also start with two tracks that has really underground sound, so I will lose all posers that try to listen to the mix.

TRACK LISTING for the "TRAPPED UNDER VICE" PART ONE. Fenriz (a.k.a. DJ V.K.O.M.) mix of black thrashing death

Trapped Under Vice, Vol. I

01. Necrovore (USA) 'Mutilated Death' (1987)
02. Mental Decay (Denmark) 'Eat the Posers Guts' (1987)
03. Pentagram (Chile) 'Profaner' (1987)
04. Necrodeath (Italy) 'Agony/Flag of the Inverted Cross' (1987)
05. Morbid (Sweden) 'Wings of Funeral' (1987)
06. Poison (Germany) 'Yog-Sothoth' (1987)
07. Devastation (USA) 'Devastation' (1987)
08. Merciless (Sweden) 'The Awakening' (1989)
09. Minotaur (Germany) 'Fall of the Gods' (1988)
10. Mutilated (France) 'Funerarium' (1988)
11. Deathhammer (Norway) 'Toxic Radiation' (2008)
12. Obliveon (Canada) 'Whimsical Uproar' (1987)
13. Obscurity (Sweden) 'Demented' (1987)
14. Morbid Saint (USA) 'Beyond the Gates of Hell' (1988)
15. Vulcano (Brazil) 'Guerreiros de Sata' (2003)
16. Whiplash (USA) 'The Burning of Atlanta' (1985)
17. Infernö (Norway) 'Thrash Metal Dogs of Hell' (2004)
18. Aura Noir (Norway) Iron Night/Torment Storm' (2008)

Thanks again to Fenriz for everything, and also to Peter Beste for allowing me to butcher his fine photography for the cover. Enjoy

Thursday 9 July 2009

Interview with Zhema Rodero of Vulcano


Back in March, when we were trying to get some stories together for the VICE Brazil Issue, I thought a feature on Brazil's golden age of metal would make an interesting feature. I contacted every legendary 80s Brazilian black/death/thrash band I could think of, with a view to some interviews. I got email addresses from the official sites, went through their official MySpaces, and even emailed a university in Belo Horizonte, as Sarcófago's Wagner Lamounier is a professor of economic science there. But it was all for shit. Either they didn't speak English, didn't get the email, or thought I was a waste of time. One dark hero, Vulcano's Zhema Rodero, did finally respond though, and I got as far as sending him a list of questions (back in April), but he disappeared again and never replied. Until last night. 

AFITFOG: Firstly, I'm interested in finding out Vulcano's origins. How did you guys all meet?
Zhema Rodero: Like all the bands rising (at the time), I studied in the same school together with Paulo Magrão (Vulcano's original guitarist) and we played some rock songs on guitar. Around '78/'79 we formed Astharot, and some years after, Vulcano. In the beginning we played a raw hard rock style, trying to do something like Motörhead, but our singer and equipment just weren't good enough to do that. In '84, the vocalist Angel joined the band, so we became more dirty and brutal with our Brazilian heavy metal.

How were you guys received by the Brazilian media and public?
In '83 we released our first record, a 7" single, and we were totally underground – nobody knew about us. In those times there were big Brazilian rock bands belonging to the massive record companies. Vulcano were a little band. In the end of 1983, a famous Brazilian reporter wrote a review about us in the Brazilian Dictionary of Rock, so Vulcano became more well known in the scene.

When you released Bloody Vengeance, it was pretty unique for its time. What were you guys influenced by?
I do not know exactly, but I venture to say that it was a combination of factors, between the style of play of Lauder (drummer), Flavio (guitarist), and my compositions. I have my way of writing songs, which is well embedded in the style of them.

Was there a big scene in Brazil in the mid '80s or was it underground? Were you, MX, Mutilator, Sarcófago, and Sepultura all friends?
Yeah! There was a strong scene here in Brazil, even though we were all underground. We were all friends because we were always playing together or watching other bands play festivals. Most bands of that time never did anything outside of Brazil. There are few who had a small reputation, Vulcano were one.

How did you feel about what happened to thrash metal towards the end of the '80s/early '90s?
I know that was a very important moment for the metal. Today, the metal is a style and will live forever in the history of music in the world. I’m proud to have participated at that time.

What did you make of the Norwegian black metal scene that hailed all those Brazilian bands as massive influences?
It's hard to explain, because when the Brazilian scene was born, the social politics imposed by government was very different. Here in Brazil we revolted against that situation so it was one of the reasons why we put more rage in our songs.

Where do you see the sound going from now?
I think the sound of Vulcano will become anachronistic because I don't like to put modern elements into the music that I do. I do a song primarily to please myself and I am an old guy, so my song will sound old. I would like to finish by saying that Vulcano are finishing their newest album and it's called Five Skulls And One Chalice. We are doing the mix, and if all goes well Cogumelo Records will release it next November.

Thank you for the opportunity to answer these interesting questions and keep banging !!!!!!!!

Indeed we shall and thank you Zhema.

Sunday 5 July 2009

Fucked by the Living Dead

Braindead (1992) Peter Jackson (New Zealand)

The most thrash movie ever? I like how Jackson went from making thrash movies to more black metal pictures like Lord of the Rings hahahaha