Insane Devotion (Brazil) 30/12/2015
Like every year, this year too, I want to end 2015 in the best possible way. The interview bellow is one of those ones that make you appreciate even more than you already did the artist behind the band. I refer to Insane Devotion from Brazil that some time ago they released their second full length album Infidel. I talked with Fernando Nahtaivel, responsible for the keyboards and the drum programming, and with A. Maurício Laube, responsible for the guitars and the bass. Both of them very interesting personalities they present us Insane Devotion and they describe with pleasure their experience and their history throughout the twenty years journey of the band.
1. Hails Fernando Nahtaivel. How are you? Thanks for the interview. Insane Devotion is an old band, active since 1995. Would you like to give me some information about the band, the members and generally about your journey until now?
Fernando: Hail xDemoNx and Orthodox Black Metal. Thanks for this opportunity. Actually the band was formed in 1996, but only when Mauricio and Moloch entered the band, back in 1998, we took it more seriously. Since then we released two full-length albums and a split-CD.
2. Insane Devotion is a really strange name. You make the listener wonder “Are they devoted to music? Are they devoted to Black Metal? Are they devoted to darkness?”… Could you give me some information about it and how did you come up with it?
Fernando: Actually I created this name as a criticism against religion, because religious people are insane. They devote their lives to a lie, and we see every day all the shit that are made in the name of religion. But I also like your interpretation, and we are for sure insanely devoted to music and darkness!
3. Apart from Insane Devotion all members in other Metal projects too would you like to tell me more about those projects and if participating in other projects helps you become better also for Insane Devotion?
Mauricio: Scorner and Insane Devotion are both extreme metal bands, but they show a lot of difference on their sound. So, this gives me the opportunity to work with different kinds of rhythms and melodies and, of course, at certain point this could result in some influence in one band from another. The cool thing is that this whole process help me a lot to develop new ideas, new technics, new ways of constructing structures of the songs for both bands, which is very good for myself.
Fernando: We've been working as producers for our other bands as well, this experience in studio also helped a lot in the production of Insane Devotion's Infidel.
4. Along with your new album “Infidel” that we will talk about it afterwards, you also sent me another album. That was Nahtaivel - Midnight Sessions, a very good album (I will write some comments about it soon) but not directly connected to Black Metal (it is an E.B.M. album). Would you like to tell me more about this project?
Fernando: I have an Industrial solo project since 2002 called Nahtaivel through which I released several albums. Midnight Sessions was released in 2011 and is a conceptual album, each song is influenced by a different movie. It's electronic music, but it's dark, harsh and underground. After this album I also released Pon Farr in 2013 and Epicus Doomicus Electronicus in 2014. This last one is more epic and slower, therefore the title, and several metal fans expressed to me their appreciation for this album. Unfortunately I was able to release my last solo album only digitally. All Nahtaivel's solo discography is available at www.nahtaivel.com
5. Let’s talk about “Slaves Will Serve” which is included into the new cd. I liked that one a lot, to be honest maybe more than the new one, because I think you have a more old-school and a darker approach. Also I recognized some Greek Black Metal elements in that one. Would you like to tell me more about “Slaves Will Serve”?
Mauricio: "Slaves Will Serve" was written in a moment of our lives that we were 100% into the extreme black metal scene and we wouldn't give opportunity to other kinds of music influence our work. We were rehearsing a lot that time and all the bands we were listening at that time were reflected the way we wrote that album.
Fernando: The first three Rotting Christ albums, and manly Thy Mighty Contract, have an huge influence on us and the Black Metal scene from the south of Brazil in general, so this influence, together with everything that we were listening, might have been transferred to our music. But also in this particular album, O.Uber (aka Azarack, former Murder Rape and Evilwar) was playing guitar and bass with us and he is fanatic for Greek black metal. Rotting Christ, Nightfall, Thou Art Lord, Necromantia, etc... He introduced those bands to me and his playing style is really influenced by these bands. The first Evilwar album, where he was the main composer, has lots of Nightfall influenced riffs too. Ultimately I've been listening a lot to Hail Spirit Noir. It's an incredible Greek band. I love King Crimson, and for me they are the King Crimson of black metal. Amazing band!
6. So ten years after “Slaves Will Serve”, you return with “Infidel”. I think that it is quite different than the previous one, if you allow me to say more modern. What is your opinion about “Infidel”?
Mauricio: I don't like to think modern as a word to describe "Infidel", because modern could be related to something new, which is not the case with this album. The new songs bring a lot of influence of our projects like some very heavy parts that I probably must wrote with the death metal spirit, the more experimental ideas that Fernando should've brought from his EBM project, beyond the fact that we didn't want to get stuck to the black metal stereotype.
7. Who is responsible for composing the music of the band? Is it the job of a single member or a group process?
Mauricio: It's 100% shared by the two of us. One of us brings an idea and we discuss what we could do with that and then the rest of the song is going to be created with contributions from both of us.
8. What inspires you to write music and to express yourself through different styles of music?
Fernando: We have an urge for writing music. A strong desire that compels us to make it, it's really physical, we simple have to do it. And dark music is what we like to make. The world is full of shit and we have the luck to know how to play instruments, if was not for that we would have been expressing our hate and contempt in other ways, and now we could've been imprisoned or killed. Music is what keeps our sanity, so we are always writing music for a project or another.
9. Could you give me some information about your lyrics? Who is responsible for them and what is he trying to express through them?
Fernando: I shared this responsibility with Mauricio. Most of the songs are about our thoughts on humanity, and these thoughts aren't very good. We are atheists, so there's no worship in any form. We are strongly anti-religion and I think it directs our lyrics too.
10. You use a drum machine into both of your releases. I have to say that the programming and its sound is very good but wouldn’t you prefer a real drummer? What do you say about that?
Mauricio: A long time ago we really would like to have a fine drummer playing with us, but we really gave up trying to find one that was committed with our sound and shared our ideas. Insane Devotion works perfectly this way and we don't have any reason to change that.
11. You come from a country that has a great history in extreme Metal. How is the underground Black Metal scene there? Are you in contact or cooperation with anyone from the scene? Are there any bands or musicians from Brazil that you like and support?
Fernando: The Black Metal scene here, and extreme metal in general, in number of bands is really huge. Thousands of bands! We are in contact with people from the underground from all over Brazil and we have lots of good bands. In our hometown, Curitiba, Murder Rape and Amen Corner are the two most well know black metal bands, and we have lots of good death, grind and doom metal bands as well here. Division Hell, Necrotério, Anmod, Eternal Sorrow, Infernal, and lots more. And also Scorner and Doomsday Ceremony, two bands with members from Insane Devotion. What I think we have to improve is the situation for live acts. The equipment and houses are rubbish, the payment for the bands is almost non-existent, and, as one of the reflections to live in a poor country, bands don't sell so much merchandise as they would deserve to sell. Also from those thousand bands, only a few are able to tour in the country. To make a living from the band is only a dream for almost all the extreme metal bands.
12. I guess because of the lack of a real drummer you don’t play live. Would you be interested in playing live or it is something you don’t support as other bands in Black Metal do?
Mauricio: No, we have no problems with playing live. I believe bands should play live when they have opportunity. I played a lot with Scorner in the 90ies. Fernando plays live concerts with his project. Moloch is very active with his band Doomsday Ceremony. Maybe this could bring us some relief about not playing with Insane Devotion. But every time we put a new album on the market, we discuss about the possibility of playing again, after all we only played twice when we released our split album in 2000.
13. Have you started composing new material for your next release? When do you plan to have it ready for release?
Mauricio: In this moment we're working on the Infidel's release and didn't start talking about new songs or ideas. This should happen in one moment, but we don't have this urgency in writing for Insane Devotion at this exact moment.
14. How to you imagine the future of the band for the following years?
Mauricio: We always had fun saying that we took 5 years between the release of the split and the first album and then 10 years to the next one and maybe now we need another 15 years to come up with good ideas lol, but I really believe we still have a lot of ideas to put on records, so yes, you will hear from us in the future.
15. I guess that’s all I wanted to ask you. Do you want to sum up your near future plans and add anything for conclusion?
Fernando: We really would like to thank you xDemoNx for the opportunity to promote our band and new release, Infidel. We also would like to thank all the people who are reading this interview and support Black and Death Metal. A great “fuck you” to all Christians, Muslims and Jews from all over the world. Make a favor to the world and kill yourself. Stop making trouble in the name of lies and invisible beings, and stop to spread ignorance everywhere. Hail profane music!