Saturday 22 December 2012

Interview with Cultura Tres

Today on Sludgelord I am interviewing Cultura Tres – A Blistering and Brilliant Psychedelic Sludge Metal Band from Venezuela who we originally featured back in June 2011

Their 2011 album El Mal Del Bien has received critical praise across the globe. And has elevated these superb Sludge Rockers at the forefront of South American Doom/Stoner/Sludge Metal.

They have toured Europe a few times because of the album's success which is now going to be re-released on CD and Vinyl through ace Record Label – Devouter Records.

The band have kindly agreed an interview with me.

Q1 – Hi Guys. Firstly, thanks for doing this and taking the time to talk to us at Sludgelord. We really appreciate it and are massive fans of your music.

Gracias! Thank you for the chance to talk about the band, and the good work you do promoting great underground music.

Q2 – For People not in the know – Can you tell them how the band came about, When you formed etc...

We are Cultura Tres from Maracay, Venezuela. The band formed in 2007, with the release of EP “Seis”. Since then, we’ve released two albums: ‘La Cura’ (2008) and ‘El mal del Bien’ (2011). Perhaps it’s nice to know that we are completely DIY: we do our own mixing, mastering, filming and editing of our video clips, artwork etc etc. It’s a lot of work, but we are happy we have full say over our creativity.

Q3 – How would yourselves describe your sound. 

South American Sludge. Dark, melancholic, trippy, heavy.

Q4 – Which bands influence you on your music. 

Alice in Chains. Godspeed you black Emperor. Mars Volta. Pestilence. Astor Piazzola. Entombed. Silvo Rodriguez. Los Natas.

Q5 – Is the band a full time project or do you have full time jobs to contend with.

Well, it’s a full time project in a way, but we all have other jobs as well, to sustain the investments for our band. We work as video editors, sound engineers, light technicians, and one of us works at a university.

Q6 – What is the song-writing process like in the band. Is it a whole band collective or individuals that write the music. 

Usually, guitarist/vocalist Alejandro comes up with the idea for the song and the main riffs. Then we get together to flesh out the song, deciding on details, structure, mood. Then Alejandro lets the lyrics flow up from the unconsciousness while recording, a magical process if you ask me.

Q7 – Now you’re one of the new breed of South American bands gaining praise across the globe for your blend of great music. Along with At Devil Dirt and Banda De La Muerte. You guys must be pleased with the praise you have received so far.

Nice that you know these bands! Yes, we are very proud about that. There are so many great bands from Venezuela, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Brazil and for a long time they were only noticed inside: America and Europe ignored music from other continents. Now that’s changing, and we’re both proud and happy that such great music from our continent gets good attention world-wide. And of course, to be part of that!

Q8 – Your 2011 album - El Mal Del Bien – has been universally acclaimed and has opened many doors for you across the globe. The buzz around you guys has steadily been building to the point your now becoming quite a force on the international scene. Bet your pleased with the praise for this as well.

Very much so! This is also a good opportunity to give thanks for that to our press agent Vania [Leave Something Witchy]. She single-handedly brought this album to the attention of just about every underground or mainstream media out there. Also in the last month, with the Devouter Records CD release of “El Mal del Bien”, the label helped gain additional attention.

Q9 – Do you gig a lot in your home country and other parts of South America. Is it easy to get gigs in your part of the world.

We try to gig everywhere we can, and did many shows so far in South America, Europe and Japan. In some places it’s very easy to gig, and in some places it’s quite hard. For example, the USA would be very difficult because of visa, even though we seem to have quite a few fans over there! And we always wanted to play Italy and Scandinavia, but never managed to do so yet. With our new album coming up, we hope to discover new places, so be prepared…

Q10 – Are your family and friends supportive of your music.

Some of them do, but for some of them it was difficult to understand what drives us to work so hard, drive many kilometers in small vans, build the stage, give a show, clean up and sometimes sleep on concrete. But anybody who really knows us can see the passion behind it, and see what it brings us: the beautiful experiences we gain through traveling, encountering so much hospitality, great food and beautiful music.

Q11 – What are your favourite bands around at the moment. Do you listen to modern day rock/metal or do you just listen to the classic era of Stoner Rock/Hard Rock 

Actually, we have quite a diverse taste in music. We like anything from Calle 13 to Carcass, and from salsa to seventies rock.

Q12 – You have travelled around the world now. What is your favourite place to gig. Or do you love playing everywhere.

Yeah that’s one of the privileges of being in a band: the travelling and meeting real people, instead of being a walking-bag-of-money tourist haha. Our favourite place differs between the band members: they include Tokyo (the sushi!), Buenos Aires (the steaks!), Czech Republic (the beers!) and Venezuela (the beaches!). Everywhere we’ve met incredible hospitality and made friends for life. It’s a beautiful thing, touring.

Q13 – Your just went on another UK tour. How has the UK reaction been like to your music when playing live?

UK feels like our second home. The scene is very tight and supportive, bands come to check out each other’s shows, and for some reason the people are very concentrated when listening to our songs and seem to understand what we want to say with our music. Also the organizers are very open to Cultura Tres, which shows for example in how we were invited to play the first edition of DesertFest.

Q14 – El Mal Del Bien is finally being released on CD and Vinyl through Devouter Records. How did you associate with those guys. Great label by the way. We are big fans of their work.

Yes we are too! Phil is a great guy, and we have label mates to be proud of, like Galvano, who we recently saw live. Devouter Records got in touch with us, because Phil knew the band, and wanted to release our album in the UK. From the email exchanges we developed trust, and we met each other during our recent tour to the UK. Internet works!

Q15 – What are your views of blogs such as the Sludgelord reviewing your records, as opposed to mainstream music magazines? - How has the mainstream coverage been like for your music. 

The main difference is that underground blogs REALLY take their time to review an album. Mainstream media usually writes just a few lines, but never a really detailed analysis of an album after more than one spin. This gives a much deeper insight into what we are trying to say with our music, and it’s actually what reviewers should do! Of course, mainstream media can be important too, and luckily for us they have also written well about our work, Metal Hammer, Terrorizer etc etc. But if you ask me, the most true reviews came from underground webzines! So please keep up the great work, through you guys we can discover and learn about amazing new music that is hard to find out otherwise!

Q16 – What are your future plans for the upcoming 12 months or so. Anything we should be excited about? 

Well, we are right now in the studio, recording the third album. The songs are in their final stages, and soon we will announce the title. We plan to start touring in March.

Q17 – Finally, Do you have anything to say your fans

Thanks so much for supporting underground music. It’s the biggest cliché but it’s really true, without people coming to the shows, buying merchandise and albums, it would be very hard to keep up as a band. And the same goes for the underground blogs like your one, a big ‘gracias’!

Well guys thanks for doing this. Good luck with the CD/Vinyl Release. We are big fans here at Sludgelord. Keep up the excellent work.  Can't wait to hear the new album. Thanks. Steve.

Check Out This Brilliant Band from the links below:

Official Website