Aaron recently interviewed Italian Sludge Metal riffsters – OOZE – who made an impression with us here at Sludgelord HQ with their stunning S/T new album which was given the Matt Fitton treatment.
Matt described the album as: “Italy has been banging out some really good noise over the last few years, and Ooze have joined those ranks with complete disregard for their own personal safety, or indeed the welfare of human ears. This album is rough around the edges and very undercooked, which makes it a success on all fronts when it comes to sludge. An outstanding effort from this young group, I look forward to hopefully documenting their infectious grooves for years to come.”
So let's see what OOZE have to say to Aaron when he recently caught up with them.
Welcome to the Sludgelord, pleased to talk to you guys and welcome.
(SL) Who are you, state your name (s) and purpose?
Hi, we’re Ooze from Trieste (Italy) and we love to play heavy music. Outside the band we’re four normal individuals that mind their own business and that try their best to keep distance from the filth that surrounds Italy every day. We want you take part of our nausea.
(SL) Summarise your musical journey (s) this point?
We’re born near the end of 2011, but every band member had previously played with other bands from the local scene. In may 2012 we recorded our first self-produced and self-distributed EP, called Sister Tank. Thank to this EP the Israeli label Totalrust became interested in us and now, our first full-length is about to be released.
(SL) What can fans look forward to from you in 2014? How is your schedule shaping up?
As said before, at the end of January our first self-titled record will hopefully be released and we will do our best to support it with as many live shows as we can, possibly with an European tour. Even if the album is not out yet, we recorded it 1 year ago so if everything will work fine we’re gonna hit the studio again in late 2014 to record new material that we’re already working on.
SL) What springs to mind when you think about the completion of your new/current record?
A lot of work, a lot of patience and a lot of broken piggy-banks!!!
(SL) Who handles song writing duties?
Usually Ans (bass) comes to the practice space with some structured riffs and then, altogether we arrange the song. Meanwhile everyone can bring new ideas and of course working on its part, but we always keep in mind that our goal is to make music without too many ornaments in it and that will make you headbang.
(SL) How long was the gestation of your new/current opus from conception to delivery?
The recording process for our self-titled album lasted 5/6 days, but we can’t really tell how long the writing process took because we had to face a line-up change (we parted ways with our first drummer), so basically the record is a collection of the best songs written during the whole 2012.
(SL) Reflecting on your new/current record, was your artwork designed with a particular physical format in mind? Who designed it? What are your thoughts the finished physical product? What format is/will be available?
The artwork was made by our friend Raoul (https://www.facebook.com/viewfromthecoffin) with the vinyl format in mind, but it works well even on CD that for the moment will be the only format available (of course there will be a digital release as well). We are also planning to print a limited amount of cassettes that hopefully will be released shortly after the CDs.
Unfortunately we didn’t have the chance to see the final physical product yet, but we’re really satisfied with the artwork, because it summarize very well what you will find in the record.
We would like to say here that we’re still seeking a label for the vinyl distribution, so if anyone is interested, drop us a line!
(SL) The best and worst things about being in a band?
For sure the best things about being in a band are the experiences that you make while playing shows, the feedback from the audience, the cool people that you meet, the new bands you know and the places you see.
One of the worst things, at least for us Italians, is the lack of interest that our country offers for bands like us. By that we don’t mean that we would like to be treated like rockstars or shit like that, we really don’t care about this stuff. We’re doing all of this because we love to play and because we love to release all our frustrations and anger on stage. That being said, it would be nice to have more participation and more interest from the people in the underground scene, but this is what Italy has to offer!
Of course another bad thing about being in a band is the constant outcome of money from our pockets, well spent indeed, that will never come back!
(SL) Influences and heroes, what are turn offs and turn on’s?
To say the word Sabbath will be obvious, but we have many different influences in the band, from 70’s rock to nowadays death metal. Sometimes we like to follow anew road rather than the old one: we believe that it’s very important to keep your influences wide and fresh in order not to sound like a copy of a copy. We also believe that it’s very important to be humble and listen to the advices the more experienced bands/people have to tell you. Truth is , there are no heroes.
SL) Any record from the past or present that springs to mind?
“Sore” (buzzoven), “Take as you need for pain” (E.H.G), “Variante alla morte” (Cripple bastards) “The great southern trendkill” (Pantera), “Sabbath bloody Sabbath/ Mob rules” (Blach Sabbath), “Slowly we rot” (Obituary), “Invernal” Black Cobra, but also records like “The fire of unknown origin” (Blue oyster cult), “The rise and fall of Ziggy Stardust and the spiders from Mars” (David Bowie) and “Dirt” (Alice in chains)... but there are many others!! These are just what came to our mind now.
(SL) The last album that kicked your arse?
(SL) What was your first instrument or musical experience and what do you use today?
Our musical background is definitely the practice space. Almost everyone in the band never studied music theory, we hated how our school system tried to teach it. So our love for playing coincided with punk music when we were just a bunch of stupid kids and we bought the less expensive gear possible (like a bass with a little 15 Watt combo that back then cost 150.000 lire, that’s how much you can spend today for a Black Sabbath gig ticket). As said before, we spent a lot of time in the practice spaces to understand how the instruments should be played while listening to tons of music and smoking bongs... also because at the time the only alternative in our city were cheap discos.
(SL) One item, gear or otherwise that characterises your band and one item from your set up you cannot live without?
Loud volumes, a primitive sunn coliseum bass, booze and weed.
(SL) Pro-tools versus old school?
For the songwriting we used to make everything in the practice space, but now we started to use Pro-tools to have a quick picture of what the structure of the tracks could sound like. With this approach it’s way easier to adjust and complete the song.
For the recordings we would say Pro-tools now. In our last album we wanted a rough sound, not edited and so we did a live recording of all the instruments together. With this approach we have kept the right atmosphere but we were also limited with the sound control. If you see us live you’ll hear a different sound for sure.
SL) Blogs and social media vs. getting on the road and touring?
Blogs and social media are essential for an initial promotion and for an immediate digital distribution of music; however, we think that for bands like us live shows are the real deal. Heavy music has always meant to be heard and seen live. How you play your tunes live it’s so important, because this is a very “physical” music and we totally fell in love with this genre after seeing our first gigs and everything that surrounded them. Beside that gigs are a far better promotion than random “likes” on facebook form people that really don’t care about your music.
(SL) What are your survival tips for the road?
- Who drives picks the music .
- Who farts has to warn.
- Don’t let Sirio (guitar) alone for lunch (he likes to take it very easily, so you’ll end up waiting for him forever!) .
- Last but not least, if you have to sleep on the floor be sure to drink the right amount of booze.
(SL) Vinyl Junkie or Ipod flunky? Discuss
Both, vinyl will give you a boner but the Ipod is very handy and useful.
(SL) Finally, do you have any final comments/word of wisdom you’d like to bestow upon us?
Thank you for this interview, we hope to hit the road soon! Every info about us can be found on our facebook page. If you wanna book us for a show don’t hesitate to contact us! And support the underground scene, because there you’ll find the real deal!
Written by Aaron Pickford
Thanks to OOZE for taking the time out to talking to Aaron.
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