Wednesday 24 July 2013

Interview with Sascha from WALL

WALL cover art

Now on Sludgelord it is my pleasure to be interviewing Sascha lead singer from brilliant Germany Doom-Pop-Sludge Rockers – WALL

Wall have made a great impression on us at the blog with their awesome S/T début
album which I recently described as -

“This album is something special indeed. If you’re a fan of Torche then your going to
love it. Simple. This album is simply breathtaking from start to finish. It is brilliantly
produced and played by everyone involved. Wall have delivered one of 2013’s must
have albums. Simply Incredible.”

If you're a fan of Torche and Floor style of Doom-Pop then your need to check this band out now. The guys have kindly agreed an interview with me which I can't wait to get started with.

So folks – Here we go

Q1 – Hi. Thanks for doing this. How are things with you all today?

Hi Steve, thanks again for that awesome review and for spreading the word. we're in the middle of moving to a new rehearsal room and kinda bug the hell out of each other. we all go full retard when we communicate with each other. In other words everything's swell and we love each other.

Q2 – Can you give our readers a brief history of how the band came about.

I was part of a kinda similar sludgy band that fell apart in 2006 and it took two years until the right people got together to continue doing this heavy pop thing. oddly enough the bandmembers were not that deeply rooted in the local punk/hardcore scenes as I was but that only led to a more open minded approach from everyone who was there at the beginning.

The intial line-up consisted of those who played on the demo recordings. I started playing drums shortly after that mainly because I'm such a huge fan of Henry Wilson's drumming (late FLOOR and CAVITY's Supercollider) and just recently after having recorded the album Maik from the now defunct KODIAK started playing drums with us.

The current line-up is

Maik- Drums
Sascha on Bass, Synth and Vocals.

Q3 – How would you describe your music. I would describe it as Doom-Pop-Sludge
Metal. Or do you have a different term for it.

I like when people come up with new and crazy labels for it but Doom-Pop or Sludgepop are most often used tho, Jens/NIGHTSLUG once called it pussy-sludge which we all found kinda funny. When explaining it to co-workers or relatives I always describe it as heavy pop music, doesn't have this scene related sound to it.

Q4 – Now congrats on your début album. A brilliant album that has impressed us greatly
at the blog. Along with my brother and a few close friends as well. How has the overall
reception been to the album. I have read a few great reviews.

Thanks a lot for the kind words. The reception has been good so far, as Chris from TCM records puts it the album is probably a "grower" and slowly starting to be heard through word of mouth. I'd say two out of ten fans of heavy music can relate to that melodic approach, the others prefer screamed vocals or a more classic doom/stoner voice.

We all smiled at the cvltnation review where the guy asked himself throughout the whole review if a band similar to FLOOR and TORCHE is needed but he can't really get himself to answer the question with a distinct NO, hugs and kisses to that guy.

Q5 – Does the album or any of the songs have any specific meaning. Or is it just a collection of tracks to rock out to.

Almost all of the songs deal with personal social skills and the lack thereof. That is part apology to those involved and part a constant reminder to better myself. So we kinda rock out to kicking ourselves in the balls lyrically, shame we can't be as funny as PISSED JEANS at it.

 The Legends Meet - Sascha and Steve Brooks. Which one is which!!

Q6 – I apologize for keep mentioning the Torche/Floor references. Obviously your big fans of those two great bands and Steve Brooks in general. Which other bands and artists influenced you all as artists.

No problem, part of the reason we chose our bandname is that ceiling would be a shitty name for a band. So there is definately some EARTH/SUNN sort of worship going on, but I think FLOOR created a very liberating sound with their ST album, freeing sludge music of the same old IOMMI riffs repeated a thousand times over as well as throwing in harmonic vocals thus making way for a different kind of songwriting.

Concerning influences I guess this changes on a quarterly basis for everyone of us and I'm not quite sure what pours into the band's sound in the end, the new COFFINS album or rather the new one from the PET SHOP BOYS. When writing songs I try to push myself in certain directions temporarily e.g. listening to some DRUNKS WITH GUNS or BOREDOMS when I want to go less bubblegummy but I wouldn't say this defines us as a band. concerning other forms of art we would probably be a mix between murakami and bacon if that doesn't sound too pretentious.

Q7 – Was it hard or easy album to write and record for. As the album has huge a sound of it's own. Plus the riffs are loud and heavy through out.

It was more of a natural process since we did most of the stuff ourselves and just had the mastering done in a studio. This way we had lots of time on our hands to refine and tune everything the way we wanted. A more traditional recording process might have resulted in a more standard rock production and we wanted it to sound as big and bass heavy as possible.

Q8 – Do you all have regular jobs or is being a musician your main job.

I think almost all german heavy bands except for the bigger metal ones can't afford to do this full time without a proper job at the side. Maybe it's easier for bands from the US due to a higher international interest but I'd rather play 30 shows a year then 150 and be a roadie or freeloader in between.

Q9 – What is your favourite song off the album. Mine personally is Cheater. An epic song full of different tone and mood running through out.

I like playing ghosts very much, it's a tad cheesy and has some WARNING vibe to it. Cheater is a favourite also, live we tend to pimp the epic part in the end with black metal screaming which always worked nicely.

Q10 – How big of a help has BandCamp in getting your music across to the masses.

Bandcamp is great to discover new bands it's a lot less annoying than other music sites and it's a comfortable way to distribute or just make the music available to check out.

Q11 – Has the Sludge/Stoner/Doom Metal community been a big help in getting your music across to the masses. Have you received any mainstream attention yet.

The community has been quite nice so far, very dedicated show promoters and totally huggable boys and girls in the bands we had the pleasure to play with so far, not narrow-minded as the doom moniker would sometimes suggest. Especially the support from fellow bands like UNION OF SLEEP or B.SON really means a lot to us.

Only mainstream attention so far came from a female songwriter from the UK who uses the name for her outfit since last year and suggested a name change on our side.

Q12 – In 5 words or less describe the live WALL experience.

Loud candy explosion

Q13 – What are your views of bands using websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo to fund their new album releases. Some people and bands are for it. Some are not. Would you consider doing some thing like that yourselves.

Personally I would rather slap together some handprinted CD-R's or go digital only than having people pay up-front for it since the product in the end could still be a letdown for those who paid money in advance but in case of some cool inventions, social documentaries or weird electronic instruments I like the idea a lot.

Q14 – You released your demo record in 2009 and released your début album in 2013. Was there a specific reason for the long wait in between.

I switched to drums after the demo, the singing part wasn't clear in the beginning and we took some time to realize we needed two guitars and we practically used 2010 and 2011 to refine everything. Seems so lazy looking at the numbers but we were very busy mixing everything up until it all fit together. as a three piece we even tried one of these very long songs which set us back for more than half a year.

Excellent Poster that Michael from Wall put together for me.

Q15 – I am a big fan of the German Sludge/Stoner/Doom Metal scene at the moment. Some great bands coming from your country – yourselves, Voltron, Amber, Aleph Null, Nightslug, The Moth, SHAKHTYOR, Union Of Sleep and Wolves Carry My Name. Is the German Sludge/Stoner Metal scene thriving at the moment. Are there a lot of gigs and venues for you to perform on a regular basis.

The interest in bands who play this type of music has definately been rising over the last few years. Lots of people with a Hardcore background are now rocking to bands like WEEDEATER and start slow bands themselves. Some of them I remember were making jokes about being able to drink a cup of coffee in between riffs merely five years ago.

So now it's of course easier to get shows, even some bigger events that are not labeled doom now accept heavy bands.

Q16 – How easy is it for you to get regular gigs or do you perform only when everyone is available to play.

We just let it happen for the most part as the whole thing is much more rewarding when the promoters are really into it, hooking up to some bigger international bands that are touring Europe hasn't been that great of an experience so far and besides the booking agencies behind these tours are often douches far away from any DIY attitude.

Q17 – Your début album is being released on Vinyl courtesy of excellent record label – This Charming Man Records. How did you hook up with them. (I have dealt with Chris many times and he is hell of a nice dude).

We're all in love with the guys from UNION OF SLEEP, always have been. Jens introduced us and Chris helps out on drums in UOS at the moment. They have all been in the Hardcore scene since the 90s so we probably even ran into each other back then.

Besides we got two hardcore Smiths fans in WALL so it had to be that label anyway.

Q18 – What are your favourite bands you are currently listening to. Any bands that myself or our readers should check out.

I have rather weird playlists at the moment ranging from old hardcore to noise to synthpop and then some slow heavy stuff mixed with grind bands like NAILS or PHOBIA. Guess the only current albums your readers would dig out of that could be the new MOSS and COFFINS albums, MAGIC CIRCLE and maybe the new GAYTHEIST until the next TORCHE record comes out.

Q19 – If you could provide words to wisdom for people wanting to start a band – What would they be.

I think everybody who starts making music should be knowing why she or he does it and I've never seen or heard a good band without a distinct vision, even total rip-offs can surpass the bands they try to mimic when they're passionate enough about it.

Q20 – What are the advantages and disadvantages of being in a band. Financial aspect
being a part of band could be a major disadvantage.

The biggest advantage is that you get a handfull of bandmates who share and help to propel some very important emotions or geekstuff that you'll probably not be talking about with your mum. The biggest disadvantage is that communication can always turn sour when stubbornness starts coming into play be it creative ideas or logistics or everything at once. Financial aspects do not concern us that much since we don't depend that much on the money the band makes.

Q21 – Do you have any plans to tour overseas or is this too expensive for you to do this
at this moment in time.

No plans at the moment, I guess we'll have to see how the overall interest in the band develops now after the album came out. We'd love to if we could pull it off without going bankrupt.

Q22 – Finally do you have anything to say to your fans.

Hope we'll meet everyone who likes what we do in person. When you put something genuinely heartfelt out there and people like it it's very touching at least when you're not the most confident person on earth.

PS: BTW you already featured two Wall side projects last year, Arne is in CUT and

Jeez - Didn't even know that I covered two WALL side-projects. Folks. Check em out. Both excellent bands in their own right.

Well Sascha and WALL – Thanks for talking to me. Been a real honour for me. You have released one of my fave records this year. I hope I get the chance to see you guys live in action one time.

You can buy the album on DD from their BandCamp Page and Vinyl from This Charming Man Records.

Check This Amazing band from the links below.


Check out the excellent track Wasteland from WALL's brilliant debut album.