Sunday, September 20

Interview with Maelstrom of Whorde (New Jersey Black Metal)

You, Scum [my original contact had been Scum, but my questions received their answers from Maelstrom - Alky], vociferate and also perform batteries upon the drums of war, in partnership with Maelstrom the six-stringer, sans bass guitar, and claim to be influenced by such legendary bands as Beherit, VON, Hellhammer, Archgoat, Bathory, Black Crucifixion and Mayhem. These are musical entities that I have always been drawn to by their genuine disregard for conventional musical 'tastes.' Beherit in particular stands upon a grand pedestal, from my point of view. Tell me, what are your thoughts on the work of Holocausto and company, including his electronic/ambient works, including Suuri Shamaani. To me, he is a genius--as always, genius is rarely recognized until long after the death of the genius.

MAELSTROM- Holocausto was without a doubt one of the most creative songwriters of the 90's black metal scene. I feel that he achieved everything that black metal was sought out to be on their album "Drawing Down the Moon." It just gave you that dark fucking vibe that such immense evil lurks behind this world of light that so many cluelessly buy into. The riffs had so much violence and agression and yet were also dark as fuck. To be honest, I had never heard any of their ambiant releases but I hear electric doom synthesis isn't too bad.

This is a follow-up question: where did Mayhem go wrong? When did they die? I don't believe Mayhem survived beyond De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas; Wolf's Lair Abyss was somewhat interesting to me, but I never listen to it anymore, and it certainly does not have the spirit of Black Metal that Mayhem burned with.

MAELSTROM- The thing about Wolf's Lair Abyss was that some of those riffs were written by the dark prince himself. I personally thought that WLA was a great MCD but I really think it was Blasphemer's influnece that ruined it for a lot of people. Like him or not, Euronymous was the essence of Mayhem and that that essence died with him. I wouldn't have a problem with the WLA members playing together, but the name of the band shouldn't have been Mayhem because their last 2 full lengths didn't accurately represent what Mayhem's legacy truely was.

Tell me about the metal scene in general in your part of New Jersey. I know that Philly has a pretty strong metal presence, as well as NYC, so I'd imagine that somewhere between the two NJ has something going on. I recall years ago, maybe around the summer of 2000, when I was in Philly, there was a show somewhere in NJ, not far from Philly, featuring Bloodstorm with my favorite drummer Proscriptor McGovern filling in on drums, among other underground bands. This was a big deal. I was only 19 at the time, and when I went to all the trouble of going there, I was denied entry because it was a 21-and-over-only show. I couldn't fucking believe it. Did you see this show, or otherwise can you tell me anything about what went on that night?

MAELSTROM- Although some of the first and biggest black metal bands in the states are Jersey natives, there isn't too much going on here in the live scene. The last cool show I heard about was No Colours's INQUISION and Texas Elites BAHIMORON, but I must admit a lot of people made it out to that one. New Jersey is home to one of America's first and most influential black metal bands ABAZAGORATH. I'm also currently a guitarist in this band as well. Also from New Jersey is one of the biggest USBM bands of today KRIEG, who's leader also participated in USBM heavyweights JUDAS ISCARIOT and DEMONIC CHRIST. Since Jeresy is pretty overrun with a mass amount of tight pants wearing dick eating "NJHC" scenesters, you're better off catching a bus to NYC or a drive to Philly.

Now, about your demo "Sermon's Disease." I have not heard one millisecond of your music, due to my isolation, but that hasn't stopped me from inquiring about the burgeoning USBM scene now has it? Since anyone else reading this interview has probably not heard it either, it will benefit all of us for you to explain it. As obvious from your influences, you claim that your songs are about "the ugliness of life...filth, death, hate, pain and disease is our belief. Those who welcome these emotions and lifestyles into their hearts know how powerful they can be." With no bass track I can already imagine the aurally dismal nature of the music, but go a little further and explain your motivation with this demo.

MAELSTROM- The demo is raw as fuck!!! It is a brutal, nasty assult on the senses made in a druken disguist of this plastic existance! Sermon's Disease was meant to be pure hatred and filth, a fuck off to everyone! It is our ultimate tribute to darkness and death!

Do you see two sides to the "coin of life," or just emptiness and darkness and filth. Do you consider yourselves Nihilists? Explain, please. If so, where does my perception of beauty in the naked body of a beautiful 21 year-old girl fit in? Is there an aspect of such a thing as this that is beneath the surface, that is ugly indeed?

MAELSTROM- There is no darkness without light, yet there is so much more darkness. And I see the beauty in it, in the darkness itself. There is a dark pleasure to be found in that naked beauty you described... the lust for flesh that consumes most of the world and defies the path of a rightgous man of god.

I am a drummer for 12 years now. I began with a few lessons for basic rudiments, but quickly ended that in favor of sheer practice. My favorite drummer is of course the mighty Emperor Proscriptor McGovern of the Glenorchy District. I am always interested in drummers that also perform vocals, whether backing or leading, the latter being the case with the mighty Proscriptor. Tell me about your methods here.

MAELSTROM- SCUM programmed the drums on Sermon's Disease using a drum machine, but I now handle the drums using a different drum machine. The drums are basic as much as the guitars are. If we were to ever play live it would be with a session drummer.

I see that I am dwelling on this, but Proscriptor once mentioned his theory that Black Metal revolves in five-year cycles between the States and Europe, and that currently the US is the forefront in the battle for Black Metal survival. What do you think about this interesting idea?

MAELSTROM- I think that Black Metal's best scene was originally Norway, then France, and now the Unitied States. I agree that at this point in time the US is playing the freshest and best black metal possible!

To this day I can not formulate with words what it is about pure Black Metal in the Beherit, old-school Darkthrone style that strikes me to the depths of my soul. What do you think gives pure Black Metal such power?

MAELSTROM- Black Metal is music from the soul! For the first time in metal it wasn't about getting singed and making money, but staying true to yourself and your beliefs! The murder and suicide and church arson that constantly surrounds this music is proof that it is more than music, and that the bands are so passionate about it that they take it to the extremes. That is why black metal continues to thrive after over a decade while death metal has gone bland and feelingless! And while Nu metal has died an embarassing death (a death the metalcore scene will soon have to face) in that decade, black metal continues to evolve and become stronger than ever!

What do you think of US bands such as Grand Belial's Key, Morbius, Absu and Blood Storm? These are my favorites. I never got into Judas Iscariot, Krieg, Leviathan, Xasthur, etc. much, but that's mainly from not hearing much of their material. Oh, and what about Demonic Christ? What do you think about this southern woman who defies so many conventions, yet appears stunningly in a photo' with a confederate flag bra? I am not wild about Demonic Christ's music, but I respect them for what they do, particularly Dana Duffey.

MAELSTROM- Dana Duffey has done more for USBM than most, and I think that in the end, that will be her legacy. She was just another example of black metal defying all the rules, and not having limitations in it's own. Judas Iscariot is one of my favorite bands and deserve's its seat on the USBM throne. Xasthur, Leviatithan, all those twighlight guys... they're keeping what black metal is all about- Originallyity, Creativity, personoal emotion, fucking darkness and evil! You could not play the shit these guys play without a heart of black!!!

Do you agree with me that a so-called Black Metal band with more than three members (MAYBE four) is a bunch of poofters?

MAELSTROM- Not at all, although you don't see 5 parallel ideas too often...

I'll end here. Please give me some final thoughts upon religion, no specific religion, but religion as a general phenomenon. Is it a plague upon the human soul and mind, a blight upon the potential of the human spirit, chaining the wolf Fenrir that rears within our hearts?

MAELSTROM- Religion enslaves our spiritual selves! The proof of religion being a mere tool of mind control is everywhere- in science, in history, in war! I bow down to no entity or religious figure! I have found a god in myself, I chose the path of master over slave!!! Awaken yourselves! Awaken the god within you!!!

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