Wednesday 11 July 2012

Interview with Biza from TONGUE

Today on Sludgelord I am interviewing Biza from Tongue – The mother fucking cool Alt-Rock/Grunge/Stoner Rock Band from Belgrade that I featured recently.

These guys are starting to appear on a few of the big blogs and it's not hard to see why. These guys just kick ass big time. I wanted to interview these guys as I want them to get as much exposure as possible. Plus they are a great band that demands your attention now.

Q1 – Hi Biza, Thanks for doing this. For people who are unfamiliar with your band, can you tell them little bit about the history of the band? Where you're from, band members, when and why you formed?

Hello everybody,we're Tongue from Belgrade,Serbia and we play rock'n'roll !

Tongue is:

Vladimir "Ripkid" Bizic - guitars & vocals
Bosko Mijuskovic - bass guitar
Vojin Klickovic - drums

I've started TONGUE in 2010 after the demise of my long-running hardcorepunk band LETS GROW where i used to play the lead guitar.

After almost a decade we've decided not to play anymore,i'd say because of growing tensions within the band, also we've had a lack of support on the local scene and generally global punk scene started to falling apart, too many bands disbanded,record labels have stopped working etc. 

...But as a huge fan of music whom i can't live without literally i've had to start something
new and fresh but at the same time also something revealing to me.I wanted to do all by myself,you know,to take all the responsibility as an artist,to expand my musical creativity and start a new journey without anyone telling me what's right or wrong,that's the main reason why i went to solo career.

I've thought it sounded like a stupid idea to perform as "Vladimir Bizic" you know,so i've chosen the name TONGUE instead. TONGUE roots actually date back to 2003 with the band called WISHINGWELL where i used to sing. That was a band that i've formed with my late brother,we've always been a huge fans of that alt.rock/grunge/post-punk stuff.

Unfortunately we didn't make any live shows or records due to my brother's death in 2005. We were really close and I've been in clinical depression and on medications for years because of that loss, had so many health issues,got 30kg etc. , so TONGUE is also some healing process for me.

I'll always remember what my brother told me once, "Hey man don't think what others could say about you,just close your eyes,play and sing from your heart and people will feel it",that's what Tongue is all about and this is my neverending story.

Q2 – How would you describe your sound.

TONGUE is a mix of everything you could possibly find in rock'n' roll music.I really don't care too much about genres,i like to concentrate and pay attention on groove and emotion.You can hear a lot of different influences in our music, from THE WHO to MASTODON.It really doesn't matter till it sounds good.

Q3 – Is The Band a Full Time Project or do you have regular jobs to support the band.

It's not like a full time project,we all have jobs or doing something else beside the band.I am professional freelance 3D artist. Anyway,you need a lot of money today if you wanna do something more serious and we're giving our best, DIY all the way.

Q4 – How has the reaction been like to your music overall. At home and abroad.

To be honest,we didn't get so much support and respect here at home except from some close friends.I don't know if people are jealous or simply don't like the band,anyway situation here is generally fucked up.

There are no good record labels,local media is not supportive at all except if you're a friend with them and that's pretty lame.

If you ask me i don't give a fuck about people here in Serbia, my goal is to be recognized worldwide and reach people all around the globe. We've got a great feedback and a lot of positive reviews from different blogs and webzines abroad and that's rad man, for a debut release i am pretty happy.

Q5 – You started this as a solo project. But now expanded to a full time band. Was it hard to find the right members to play live with.

I have to say i've had luck with band members because it's very hard here in Belgrade to find someone who is both,skilled and interested in this type of music,also i didn't have any demos at all so i can say i am pretty damn lucky.

I know Vojin and Bosko for years,they used to play in a different great bands and they have pretty much great experiences and skills. I've called Bosko to help me out with the record and he immediately said yes, also Vojin gave me a call one day and said, hey man i've heard you're working on some new stuff,if you need me just let me know and we'll give it a try. 

They helped me to fulfill my dream and i am so grateful to them,they believe in what i do and that's awesome!

Q6 – Who are your musical influences.

As i've said before,i like all kinds of music,from blues & funk to hardcorepunk & metal but our main influences comes from great rock bands like Dinosaur Jr, The Melvins, Motorhead, Queens Of The Stone Age, Black Sabbath etc.

Q7 – What is the song-writing process like in the band. Do you find a subject you want to write about and take it from there. Or is it something more in-depth.

I make all the songs and write all the lyrics so we usually go to the studio after the material is pretty much done. I usually make the music first then come the lyrics.I like to sing about,you know, personal stuff i've been and still going through. 

I don't like to preach to anyone,i just wanna tell some personal stories about inner demons.

Q8 – How is the Metal Scene in your home town or surrounding areas. Are there a lot of places for bands like yours to play at on a regular basis.

Metal scene here in Belgrade is kinda small and i am not too much into it but there are some quality bands.There are not much places we can play like we used to back in the day,now everyone wants to rip you off and that sucks,also a lot of clubs have been closed down.

My good pals book the shows in a cool rock club called FEST.

Q9 – What has the reception been like to the band performing live.

Actually we didn't have any official live show yet simply because we don't have enough material to perform a set.I think we'll be doing shows after we're done with our second EP ,it will be later this year.

There is one funny story,when we did one of our practices some people that we're not familiar with came into our practice room and because that weird place looks like some old cafe bar it was like playing a small show there.After we finished playing everyone applauded like at the end of movies and we've got some really positive comments. it was funny.

Q10 - How do you feel about blogs and websites giving music away for free.

I do not support ACTA/PIPA or any other similar piracy non-sense,i think blogs are a great way for spreading your music, they're especially important for a small and unknown bands.

Look, if I really like what someone does I'll probably buy the record or come to the show but how in the hell i can do that if i don't have a chance to listen to an album,stream or download it doesn't matter at all ? Pretty fucked up shit ha ?

That's our bussiness and listen for free,if you like it buy the record or otherwise use recycle bin on your computer ;)

Q11 - What are the most/least rewarding aspects of participating with the band.

This is an interesting question.I think We all play music because we just love it and it is fun,often challenging.

Fortune and fame is something that is hit and miss.We're trying to give our best and playing in a band is something that makes us happy. 

We lose our money sometimes,we put blood and sweat into this and i think the worst thing is when you get a lack of respect and support for what you do especially when you're dealing with arrogant,selfish and jelaous people..that can be so frustrating so fuck them all !

The greatest thing is that you can have positive impact on the lives of others.

Q12 – What are the future plans for Tongue. Any more releases in the coming up.

We'll start recording another EP later this year,it's called "All Roads Lead To Me" and it's the second part of our trilogy called "A Night You'll Never Remember", after that we'll set up some shows i think.

I'd like also to put the complete trilogy  on vinyl so if you guys who're reading this right now have a record label and like what we do please get in touch with us ;) 

We're also gonna tour in Europe next year.

Q13 – Can you recommend any other great bands to check out in your hometown or country that are readers might be interested in.

Yes sure, try with Straight Mickey And The Boys ,Helltard, Tea Break, The Schtrebers, While, Threesome, Gypsy Wizard And The Prophets Of Doom, Hang, In From The Cold, Concrete Worms etc.

Thank you so much for your interest in Tongue!

Just rock never stop!


Thanks to Biza for such an honest and great interview. All the best for the future. Cheers. Steve.