Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Despot Interview

1. Can you give us an update on what is going on with the musical project these days?
Despot released its debut album, "Satan in the Death Row" on August 15, 2013. I'm already writing music for the follow up, but right now it's mostly just a bunch of crude concepts. There probably won't be anything new from Despot until late 2014.

2.How would you describe the musical sound of the new recording and also how does it differ from your previous demos?
The idea of "Satan in the Death Row" was to write a Black Metal album with as little influence from proper Black Metal bands as possible. By proper Black Metal I mean every band calling themselves Black Metal. To get inspiration for writing those songs I listened to a lot of Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Venom, Bathory, Celtic Frost, Candlemass, Angelwitch, Running Wild and, of course, loads of Thrash and Speed Metal like Overkill, Destruction, Sodom, etc. 

The end result is different from my previous stuff because of this concept. Everything else I had recorded until then was heavily influenced by Black Metal bands, especially those from the Scandinavian, Greek and South American scenes. 

3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the new release explores and also how would you describe your progress as a songwriter over the years?
"Satan in the Death Row" is an album about ideological persecution, especially the kind motivated by religion. I also threw in a bit of scientific rationalism in "Egregious". "Forbidden" is a fictional narrative from the perspective of a prisoner of the Iberian Inquisiton gone mad after rotting in a dungeon for many years. The title track is based on the West Memphis Three, a depressing modern case of witch hunt.

4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name Despot?
I chose Despot because I like short band names and I think it has a nice, imposing tone to it. Also, since I do almost everything in the band, I become a despot of sorts. A decadent despot who rules nobody!

5.Are you working with a line up these days or is the musical project solo again?
I work solo, but my wife Luiza helped me with some lyrics this time around. The graphic art is by a guy named Andre Persechini, an artist from my hometown of Belo Horizonte. You can see more of his stuff here: http://www.behance.net/gallery/Despot-Satan-in-the-Death-Row/10471133

6.Recently Apechale Winter re-issued your 2010 demo, what are your thoughts on the final product?
They released the demo digitally on their bandcamp page, so there were no changes to the original material. I'm really thankful for their interest in my music. They have a roster full of interesting new artists and I would recommend anyone reading this to check them out athttp://acephalewinter.bandcamp.com/.

7. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your newer music by fans of black metal?
Feedback has been very positive, but I'm a very small act and have limited reach. All the reviews so far have been positive, though they all point out the rough edges of "Satan in the Death Row", which is very helpful.

8.Are you involved with any other musical projects these days?
None.

9.What direction do you see your music heading into on future releases?
I will continue to write anti-social, heavy music in my own unorthodox way. I like to tread new waters whenever I sit down to compose a piece of music, so don't expect anything like "Satan in the Death Row" or my previous material again. 

10.What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
My main influences for "Satan in the Death Row" were NWOBHM and old Thrash and Speed Metal bands as well as some cult 1980's shit like Bathory and Celtic Frost. I'm quite a fan of old Black Sabbath, too. And classic Doom Metal, both old and new (eg., I hold Candlemass and Reverend Bizarre very dearly).  Other than disgusting old Metal, I listen to a lot of old prog rock like Yes and King Crimson (my favorite band). I like me some classical music too, but I mostly only listen to early XX century composers like Villa Lobos and Stravinsky. I have a large collection of Jazz and Acid Rock albums too. These also get lots of spins from me. 

11.Outside of music what are some of your interests?
I'm interested in all stages of data processing. No, seriously. I'm a computer nerd. I like Linux. And programming in Python. Perl is also a hobby. And I like Math. That is math as in mathematics, not meth as in crystal meth methamphetamine . Math is sexy, meth is not. I like Android as well. And robots.
12.Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?
Sure! First, thank you for the interview. It's been a blast. Secondly, to anyone reading this, thank you for considering my music. Feel free to drop me a note at despotbrazil@gmail.com and I'll do my best to reply in a timely fashion. Please note that since I'm super famous, I get literally hundreds of thousands of fan e-mails everyday, so it might take me some time to get back to you. Just kidding - I only get penis enlargement spam in my mail box.
 

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