segunda-feira, 22 de novembro de 2010
So!!! Now an interview with the awesome Italian Crusties KONTATTO! Speacially answered by the all members!!!
MT: Mit, vocals
K: Koppa, guitar and vocals
F: Febo, guitar
A: Ago, bass
M: Marziona, drums
01-So, I know that you are playing since 1998,something like 12 years now…and seeing to the past, what do you think really changed in the band….i mean in all ways, what thing changed to better…or more easy to do….what are the principal differences about when you started to play with KONTATTO and today??
K: Yes, we started a long time ago and had to face many many line up changes. When we started playing, we were, first of all, a different band as I am the only one since the first line up. At that time we wanted to play raw punk in the vein of Disorder, Discharge, Wretched and Varukers. We didn’t care too much about the quality of the recordings and about our capabilities, then growing up, we improved a bit and got the right people behind the instruments and now I think we are all satisfied about the music we play. When we started, the crust scene was very poor in Italy, but now we can’t complain at all as there are very good bands around and it’s easier to set up gigs, especially now that we are among the best known bands around our country. You know, at the beginnings we were just five kids playing raw music, now, 12 years later, people got the chance to see us growing up and never surrender in front of difficulties, so I can say that we all changed a bit and care more about the shows we play and the quality of the recording because I think that playing drunk as fuck on stage and recording albums that sound like shit is lack of respect for the kids who come to see our gigs and for those who buy our stuff worldwide. So maybe we are now more responsible and stronger people than we used to be years ago.
F: Koppa already mentioned what changed to better, and he's right. The only thing that got worse are the hundreds of kilometres that separate us. We used to live quite close to each other at the beginning, but now that someone moved to other towns we have to travel quite a lot to meet, rehearse and stuff. So it goes, but it's only physical distance, we are as close friends as ever, and are always happy to travel to see each other!
M: I joined in only in 2004 and I think I lived the real turning point for the band. They wanted me because for a few years Koppa moved to the drums just to keep the band alive, which actually worked out. When he realised he couldn’t handle it as they wanted new sonorities and ideas, I joined the 4 playing drums to bring new energy to the band. I think it worked out good, the band really improved and we got a double guitar line up as Koppa moved back to guitar. I also feel the difference in the way we approached music years ago, when it was more difficult to promote yourself and myspace was not existing yet. Personally I was really raw in the way I played and I just didn’t care. Now I try to improve every time to build up new songs in a more inspired way and not “just to play”.
02-In the begin ,what motivated you to start the band?? And why the name “KONTATTO” ?
K: Like many 80es bands we started because we had (have) strong messages against war, fake democracies, governments, politicians, police brutality, animal exploitation and all the “clichés” punk bands sing about. The name “kontatto” came out because of two reasons: one is that it sounds really “80es”, the second one is that it means something like keeping in touch, sticking together, you know?, it’s a kind of message of unity and it makes me think of something that breaks the borders between who’s on a stage and who’s not.
03-I know that your members also plays in others bands,like DEATH FROM ABOVE,GIUDA,CAMPUS STERMINII….who play what and where?
K: Vocals and guitar in Campus Sterminii; vocals and bass in Death From Above; guitar in Giuda; bass in Noia; vocals in a goth rock band that still has no name.
F: Guitar in Campus Sterminii.
A: Vocals and guitar in Miseria.
M: Drums in Campus Sterminii, Death from Above and in Axis of Desolation, a new band that will record soon. I’m helping Koppa in his goth band and I do guitar.
MT: Drums in Total Hell.
04-Italy seems to be great scenes since 80s ….i grew up listening to tons of WRETCHED stuff here in Brazil, where they had many fans in the 80s, and I am still a big fan of them!! In that time we were listening just to tons of d.i.y tapes with their works….etc…also at that time just some few more bands I remember from there, since in the past all was really hard to find, etc….like EU´S ARSE or IMPACT for example….what can you tell about some of these old Italian bands?? Or about the old Italian scene?
K: The old Italian hardcore scene was killer, unfortunately, most of those bands, disappeared at the end of the 80es. Wretched broke up in 1988; Indigesti broke up in 1987 and then reformed for a lp et the end of the 90es but never played any gig and I think they stopped again; Negazione played till 1993, then the broke up and formed 2 bands (Angeli and Fluxus, but they are not punk rock at all); Eu’s Arse broke up in 198 and reformed in 2002, they released 1 brand new record so far, but it’s not as good as the old stuff; Impact played till 1996, then they broke up and reformed in 2005 and still play live shows, but no new records are coming out. Raw Power never broke up, but I’ve never been a big fan of them. Bloody Riot released a 7” and a record in the 80es and they are still playing sometimes, but I don’t even consider them a band because they play once every two years only; Rappresaglia never really stopped since the beginning of their story, but the quantity of records they released during all these years is very poor. They play punk rock now. Nabat break up and reform every once in a while; Crash Box broke up in the late 80es and started again in 2006 (don’t know if they’re still doing it, but the show I saw was amazing). Then we had tons of other good bands that are basically all dead but sometimes you hear that they are still practicing and maybe one day we’ll see them on some stages. The old Italian scene was very very political and, in my opinion, this thing help in killing it. After a few years of unity and fun, everything went on the wrong direction and bands were simply boycotted because they were playing also bars instead of squats only and stuff like that. After that, many of the people more involved in the political activities, turned into regular people and even businessmen, so, what the fuck… Then, you know, drugs were involved as well, police repression, jail… all that shit killed our old scene.
F: We grew up with the old Italian shit too but, just as you, we could get knowledge of it only from old worn out tapes. We were all born in the late 70's/early 80's, and we are too young to have seen that scene with our own eyes. We all started being involved in the punk scene in the early nineties, when almost nothing but the ruins of the Italian punk scene of the roots was left. Though, the legacy of that mighty bands was strong, and we got the most of our early inspiration from it.
05-Of course we can see some “old” Italian punk influences in your work also, like WRETCHED for example….beyond, Swedish bands also, etc…. what are your biggest influences?? Are you playing some covers also in your live gigs??
K: Like I said before, we started with Wretched, Disorder, Varukers and Discharge in our hearts. Then we opened up our ears to crust core and Swedish hardcore, like Wolfpack, Wolfbrigade, Shitlickers, Mob 47, Anti Cimex, Disarm, Disfear, Totalitar, No Security, Discard, Kontrovers etc, but also to UK early crust (Doom, E.N.T.), US crust (Masskontroll, Disrupt, Warcry), European crust (Autoritar, Recharge, Hiatus) and Japanese crust (Disclose, Reality Crisis…). We played many covers during all these years. The first ones, if I’m not wrong, were: Give us a future (One Way System), All systems fail and Nowhere to go (Varukers), Never again (Discharge), Fino in fondo and Democrazia (Wretched), Attack (Rappresaglia), Warsystem and The leader of the fuckin’ assholes (Shitlickers), Cries of pain (Anti Cimex), Outlaw Vagabond (Wolfpack) and probably I’m forgetting something. In the last couple of years we played at our shows Led to the slaughter (Varukers), Usa la tua rabbia and Mai arrendersi (Wretched), Life (Disorder).
06-How are the process of composition of the songs today?? All members collaborates with lyrics, themes and riffs?? Or this is a isolated process…etc…?
K: Basically it’s me, Ago and Febo writing all the songs (riffs, melodies and lyrics). I arrange them a lot (I like pretty little things like slides and bandings that make a song special, at least to me), but everybody put in their ideas and efforts in creating a song.
M: I can write riffs but usually they’re faster than me in doing songs so I basically do the drumming only, trying to experience new things, and add things here and there to the songs when they don’t know anymore how to go on with something eheheh.
07-What about playing overseas….i know that you played a tour in USA and also in UK….i saw that you toured in the past also in Slovakia, Austria….any other country in mind to a tour?? Maybe Brazil????????????
K: we toured twice in the U.S.A. and we had a fucking great time over there! The kids seem to care a lot about us in the states and it’s always a pleasure for us to go back there. Crazy fucking energetic shows and lots of sellings at the merch table. These things, believe me, make touring bands really happy. We played only once in the U.K. at the Scumfest in London. About Europe, hm, we played many times, but it’s nothing like the states… Czech Republic is very good thou, Italy also. I’d like to go to Greece and Spain also but we need some time. About Brazil, well, we will come only if you come to Europe first!!!!
08-Who is doing your artworks?? They are great!!!
K: Stiv of war (from the band Visions Of War) is doing our artworks. He is a great artist, a great friend and a great fan of Kontatto. He’s gonna do also the next record’s cover because we want to make three records with a story that started on the cover of “Disillusione” lp and it’s continuing with the newest “Mai come voi” lp. The next record will be the end of that story, but, hopefully, not the end of the band…
09-What are you trying to cover with your lyrics? What types of themes….and do you have themes just in Italian language? (if yes, why?)
K: During all the years we sang about war, the decadence of this society, corrupted governments, this fucked up system, animal exploitation, police, fashion in the punk rock world,unity between punks etc. Now we’re more focused on conspiracies, new world order, hatred towards regular people, religions lies, priests abuse on children, that’s it more or less.
F: We started writing lyrics in Italian cause it was just more natural to us to do it in our own native language, and we wanted our messages to be easily understood. We just couldn't think that many punks from abroad would have listened to our shit at that time. Now that we are a bit better known abroad (and our knowledge of English has improved with time) we would find more easy to write lyrics in that language (it's like that for me at least, English is the most natural language for punk music I guess...) but Marione still feels more comfortable singing in Italian, and the choice must be up to him. We always include English translations/explanations for every lyrics in our records anyway.
10-I know that Koppa is a “multi-guy”, play many instruments, play in others bands, have a label, organizes tours, etc….how do you find time to work with all ?? and divide the time with the bands without chocking hours to play live for example…beyond that I said here, what others works you have yet in the punk scene?
K: You almost said it all, eheh, my life is a full time punk job. I run with 2 other guys (involved in the band Giuda) the label Agipunk. Organizing long European tours for overseas bands gives us the chance to sell our records at the merch tables all around the continent. Then I only play guitar and bass (I’m a very bad drummer…) and I also sing, but everybody can do that… When I go on tour I always try to manage to go with more than one band, so, usually, when Kontatto tours, also another band of mine comes with us. It doesn’t really affect me at all. It’s funny to travel a lot and playing in front of as many people as possible.
11-How are the scene in Italy today? Cool bands,zines,labels,etc …you can tell about…
K: I think today the scene is stronger than ever. We have tons of great bands playing in Italy and, for more details, I remind you to Maximum Rock’N’Roll issue 327 where I wrote a full Italian punk scene listing a lot of bands that are now releasing records over here. If you want some names to check out, go on my space profiles of these bands: Post Fata Resurgo, Dirty Power Game, Cancer Spreading, Noia, Campus Sterminii, Giuda, Children Of Technology, Humus, Terror Firmer, Minkions, Contrasto, Anti You, Green River Killer, Ed, Ban This, No White Rag, Pioggia Nera, Miseria, Repulsione, Drunkards, Bhopal, but, believe me, there are many many more that deserve to be checked out!
12-What are the news and upcoming for KONTATTO now ?? recording, gigs, etc….
K: We are currently planning some shows in Italy because we don’t play many gigs here. We’ll play soon three shows in Germany and Czech Republic and then we’d like to tour the U.K. and Greece as soon as possible. Then, maybe a full long European tour supporting some band from overseas (Besthoven for example…) and then we plan to release a new full lp in a couple of years.
13-And now the end….the end is near….it´s time to say……….
K: Our last goodbyes… So, Fofao, thanx a lot for your interview! It’s simply a pleasure for us to appear in your blog because we all love and respect what you’ve done during all these years. All I wanna say is that Italian bands are very underrated compared to other bands in other part of the world, so I’d suggest everybody to keep their eyes open for what’s happening here because it deserves everybody’s time and attention. See ya in Europe one day!
M: Can’t wait to come to Brazil man, together with Japan, it’s a dream to me!!! Thanx for the time and space, keep on doing great as you’ve done for so many years!!!
A, F, MT: Thanx a lot for the chance you’re giving us. Hope to see you sometimes.
Peace, love, anarchy, KONTATTO