War metal veterans! HOLOCAUSTO are one of those bands from the golden age of the mighty Brazilian scene and still standing strong. This year the band returned with “War Metal Massacre” and yet they are ready for a new attack! Valerio (guitars) and Rodrigo (vocals) answered the following questions. Prepare for war…war metal massacre!
More than a decade later than your previous album, Holocausto returns with “War Metal Massacre”, how do you guys personally feel after this release?
Valério: Our feeling was to build a bridge ... on one side of the bridge is Holocausto of 1985 and on the other side Holocausto of 2016 ... an extensive bridge that needed to be shortened (united) by the band has with its origins, the respect that the band has with its fans ... our feeling was this: to return to the starting point.
Including songs like Massacre, which was the first song ever recorded by the band in 1985 and “Destruçao Nuclear” and “Escarro Napalm” from the glorious and famous Warfare Noise I compilation means a strong back to the roots attitude…why did you decide to take this musical journey to the past and to re-record those classic Holocausto songs?
Valério: We were just writing songs for the DIÁRIO DE GUERRA (DAIRY OF WAR) album, when we received the invitation to play at the BERLIN festival at NUCLEAR WAR NOW PRODUCTIONS and with the show we also launched a new album. So we took a break from these compositions and decided that this new work would rescue 100% of the origins of the band's EXTREME WAR METAL. So we re-recorded our first three songs (MASSACRE, DESTRUIÇÃO NUCLEAR and ESCARRO NAPALM) and then the three new songs came out naturally (EU SOU A GUERRA, CORPO SECO / MÃO MORTA and WAR METAL MASSACRE).
What kind of sound did you try to achieve? How long has been the band working on this release and the new songs?
Valério: The goal was to rescue our WAR METAL ... back to the origins ... I think it took us about 6 months to leave the 6 songs ready to be recorded in the studio.
Holocausto now features the classic line-up and Rodrigo returned to vocal duties only, something he didn’t do since your debut album. How this line-up reunion came up?
Valério: Since the departure of Rodrigo Furher, the band had nine songs recorded in a pre-production that had as its final objective the recording of DIÁRIO DE GUERRA, with the formation of WAR TRIO (Rodrigo drums and vocals, Anderson bass and vocal and I guitar and vocal). Then this material was saved, we tested other drummers and after about 8 years, we decided to return to the album DIÁRIO DE GUERRA, so we invited Rodrigo to reassume the vocal and Nédson for the drums, that is, the formation of WARFARE NOISE.
If I´m not wrong, the band had another title for this release,“Diario de Guerra”, did you dropped that tittle or will you use it on a future release?
Valério: No DIÁRIO DE GUERRA music was used in the WAR METAL MASSACRE. We are rehearsing these songs and if all goes well in early 2018 we will go into the studio to record the DIÁRIO DE GUERRA album.
The album cover is also very reminiscent to the early days, was the concept and idea designed by the band?
Valério: the cover is 99% Yousuke's responsibility of NUCLEAR WAR NOW PRODUCTIONS, the 1% was just our yes when he sent the cover art.
How did the signing to Nuclear War Now come about?
Valério: when we received the invitation to play the festival in BERLIN, the idea arose to take advantage of this moment and launch an album on the opening day of the festival. So Yousuke liked it and it was.
What bands did influence you in 1986
Valério: SEPULTURA, RATOS DE PORÃO, SLAYER, HELLHAMMER, CELTIC FROST, DISCHARGE, SOD, DRI, POSSESSED, SODOM.
Do you still listen to those old recordings? How do you annalyse that stuff in comparison to the bands of the same era?
Valério: yes, everyone in the band listens to the recordings of the 80's ... there's no way to not listen ... it's inside us ... always will be ... some members like Rodrigo are always following the evolution of some bands and styles of METAL / HARDCORE etc ... I very seldom listen to any bands that are not the ones that I mentioned above or that are not from the 80's. The Anderson also listens to a few bands that are not from the 80's and Nédson also listens preferentially to the bands of the 80's but also with more current recordings.
Valério: Yes I remember ... COGUMELO was preparing for the selection of bands to launch a collection, and Vladimir Korg (CHAKAL) worked in COGUMELO and at that time CHAKAL and HOLOCAUSTO rehearsed in the same place, one band after another and our relationship of friendship extended beyond rehearsals. So Wladimir told the owners of the COGUMELO (PATTI and JOÃO) that it would be interesting to invite HOLOCAUSTO to make a demo tape and it was.
By the way, how was the relationship of Holocausto with the other bands involved? With which bands did you have a better relationship?
Valério: In the 80's the group of friends who enjoyed the HOLOCAUSTO was formed by rockers, hippies, headbangers and all crazy (laughs) ... then we got along with all the bands, because there was not a group so big and heterogeneous as the group of friends of the band. The band that gave us the most was CHAKAL without a doubt.
What were your impressions towards a label like Cogumelo Records back then?
Valério: no one in the band had any recordings, so we could not compare COGUMELO to another. The COGUMELO was and will always be the record company that believed in HOLOCAUSTO and NATIONAL METAL.
Valério: There was no internet ... the only form of contact was a letter ... so we received dozens of letters a week, but the poster of headbangers who bought WARFARE NOISE, I do not remember receiving a letter from some band, we received some poster of neighboring countries and a letter from POLAND, which alias I keep to this day. Of course we got a lot of interviews from the zines of the day.
What were the reactions of the audience, other bands, press and the staff at Cogumelo about your image/concept?
Valério: I remember as it was today in the first meeting between the members of the bands with the COGUMELO to define the name of the album, most thought we were punks ... I do not remember if anyone thought we were Nazis, but punk with certainty most liked it. At that time we had the discs of RATOS DE PORÃO, BRIGADA DO ÓDIO, OLHO SECO, LOBOTOMIA, CÓLERA and the SUB compilations (all from PUNK and HARDCORE bands). Our look was more aggressive, instead of bracelets bought in stores, we made our bracelets, and we put screws or instead of rivets ... I think that combination left that question: these crazy are METAL or PUNK (laughs) .
Campo De Exterminio was re-released a couple of years ago on CD and LP by Greyhaze Records, but the swastika was removed from the album cover, was this a decision taken by the band or didGreyhazedecided to do that change without asking the band?
Valério: in the 80's to use the swastika was a sign of protest, nowadays is a sign of apology to Nazism and in Brazil you can be arrested for it ... so common sense made us understand that we should not Use the swastikas.
Why did the style of the band change on the 1988 album “Blocked Minds” and why did you switch to drums?
Rodrigo: The simple change of guitarist would already indicate a change in the style of the band (Valério left the band). I had already taken the drums before, the first time in 1986 at the WarfareNoise compilation release show and then in 1987 on the CAMPO DE EXTERMÍNIO tour and on these two occasions we were a war trio with me on drums and vocals, Anderson on bass and Vocal and Exterminator on guitar.
And what about the “weird” stuff on "Negatives" and “TozagoAsDeismnos” what bands/music influenced you during that period?
Rodrigo: At the time of the Negatives the influences were Voivod, Discharge, Violence, Massacre, RDP, etc., metal bands and hardcore. Already in the Tozago era the influences were Godflesh, EinstuerzendeNeubauten, Ministry, Damião Experiença, etc., elements of industrial music and jazz.
Then, more than a decade later, the band returned and released, “De Volta Ao Front”, how was the idea to reunite Holocausto in 2004 to release the album?
Rodrigo: Cogumelo Records began to relaunch its entire catalog, especially the classics of the eighties, with the CAMPO DE EXTERMÍNIO being one of those items. We did the work of re-digitizing the roll tapes and during the production of the reissue we were able to meet again and the interest to play together again. It was the third time we became a WAR TRIO.
Rodrigo: It was a historic moment for the band, playing as headliners at one of the biggest extreme music festivals in the world, representing the South American metal alongside several seminal bands from various parts of the world, with the massive presence of an insane audience was really very special.
Do you have any funny or weird story from any Show of the past?
Rodrigo: Our first show was in the interior of Minas Gerais, in Jeceaba, on 04/19/1986, together with the band Freax (USA / Brazil). The audience did not expect to see a song so strange and extreme for the time and the show lasted only one song, already in the second song there was a widespread confusion with pounding everywhere.
What do you think about Sarcófago? Would you like and imagine a reunion with all the guys who recorded I.N.R.I?
Rodrigo: Sarcófago is one of the great bands of our city. They are our most brutal brothers of extreme music. I especially like the songs of WarfareNoise and INRI and it would be exceptional to have a meeting with the original members, but I think that's impossible at the moment.
And what do you think about Sepultura without Cavalera brother still existing under that name and about the music they play Nowadays?
Rodrigo: Sepultura was responsible for the wild and brutal way of playing, it was the gateway to extreme music. We were at their first show at Barroliche in BH where we live this historical moment of Brazilian heavy metal. Nowadays, due to the changes in the formation and natural evolution of the musicians that old Sepultura has been mischaracterized, but I respect the current work.
Rodrigo: Our bizarre world.
What does de future hold for Holocausto? Are you already working on new material?
Rodrigo: We do not know what the future holds and we do not really care about it. We are focused on the shows we are doing, celebrating the 30 years of the CAMPO DE EXTERMÍNIO, playing it in its entirety. Yes, we are developing the songs that will be recorded on the DIÁRIO DE GUERRA album, following the war metal line, with extreme brutality.
Thanks for your time, last words are yours…
Holocausto: thanks Chris and CTODP zine for their interest in the interview and support. Those who have waited for decades for the Holocaust to return to their origins WAR METAL, I hope they are satisfied with our WAR METAL MASSACRE album and we promise to keep our WAR METAL on the next works. Many thanks for the support of all the bangers.