Act Of Gods interview (05/2004)
1- Most people on metalstorm never heard of Act Of Gods, so can you introduce the band for us?
Well, the band started in September 2001 with Phil on guitars, Guillaume on drums and Ventylator on vocals. Phil wanted to record a professionnal demo to join a band. This demo was made to introduce his technical abilities. We recorded it in March and as we had good time playing together we decided to continue together under the name Act of Gods. We were very satisfied by the final result of the demo so we decided to send it to the major record labels. We received several proposals but we finally chose Osmose Productions because they made us the best offer. Later on we found a bass player called Bertrand who took participation to the writing of the album Stench of Centuries that we recorded in November 2003. During the mix of the album, Damien joined us and he was able to add a few solos on the album.
2- You have two former Mutilated members in Act Of Gods... What made you want to come back after ten years?
I think we never came back. We were only playing and practicing in different bands. We wanted to have the best conditions to continue so we tried to progress as musicians during this time. When Mutilated split-up, Phil switched from the bass to the guitar because he new that playing the bass would never lead him anywhere. When he felt he was ready he called for extra musicians to play the songs he had written. It took him a few years but it was worth waiting.
3/ Why did you choose the LB Lab and Stéphane Buriez to record Stench Of Centuries (because he kicks ass obviously...)? Do you think you couldn't have found better abroad?
In fact we had a very small budget so it was better to record the demo in France. Phil paid for anything because we had no record deal with Osmose Productions when we recorded the demo. To stay in France allowed us to save a lot of money we could use for a better production. We chose the Lb Lab because it is for sure the best metal studio in France. Listen to the different productions here and there and you will understand what I mean. Our goal was to record a professionnal demo and we had the opportunity to do it in France. We are happy about that because we had no language problems and the guys at the Lb Lab are all friendly and professionnal.
4- Don't you think the success of your demo was due to the cult status of Mutilated?
I don't really think so because in Mutilated, Michel was writing all the music. While in Act of Gods Phil is writing the guitar riffs. Then we put the different elements together in the rehearsal room. Everyone has a say unlike Mutilated. Furthermore I do not think it is possible to compare the music of both bands. We don't want to be a Mutilated's clone. We do not want to look back! People never asked us why we were not playing the same kind of music, I think they understood that we wanted to write the music we like and not the music of someone else. That would be ridiculous.
5- You say you want to get away from Mutilated's influence, then why record a Mutilated cover?
Simply because Phil wanted to thank Michel, (Mutilated's mainman). You know Phil learnt everything with Mutilated so it was necessary for him to express his gratitude towards that band that was by the way the first French Death Metal band back then. In 1987 Agressor and Loudblast were playing Thrash Metal.
6- I guess that unlike Mutilated you wish to have a long and successful career in the metal world...
I think we do have the energy and the musical potential to pursue such a goal. We don't want to give ourselves illusions of grandeur but we are truly dedicated to Death Metal. We like this music. It is a passion so we will do our best to continue whatever it takes. We are not trendies nor followers and we will be able to make the right decisions for the better of the band. Mutilated split-up because they refused the opportunities they had back then. I can assure you that we will take advantage of any opportunities that will help the band to continue its way.
7- What do you think of the booming of the French metal scene over the last couple of years?
It tends to be gradually interesting with bands like Kronos, Gojira, Ultra Vomit, Scarve and No Return. The technical skills and abilities have grown up and we do have bands able to rivalise with their foreign competitors. The only problem comes from the turn out which is often low at the shows. We have the bands but now we need the support. We no longer need to be ashamed of something in France because we do have a real potential.
8- How has your European tour with Impaled Nazarene gone?
Very good, except the show in Geneve where we got a bad sound. We learnt a lot from that experience and we are pretty satisfied. It was a good opportunity to introduce Act of Gods to people even though the audience was not really Death Metal.
9- What are you up to now?
We will start writing the new material this summer. We already have a few ideas but I would rather not tell you anything right now because everything has to be done.
10- Everytime I listen to French death metal I am struck by the fact that bands like you, Loudblast or Carnal Lust for example don't sound like anything else... Do you think there is now a trademark for French death metal?
You are probably right, French bands sound different but I could not tell you why. I think we all have our own perception of the music and the cultural differences must play an important goal in that way. I know that a few journalist called French death metal the "Frog Noise" because we mainly have grind bands like Inhumate, Sublime Cadaveric Decomposition and the likes...I would say it is a good think that French bands sound different from their peers. Like the US style or the Swedish style we bring something different.
11- The last word is for you...
Thanks a lot for this interview, I hope you will enjoy the Stench of Centuries album in which we put all our dedication and all our energy. I hope to see you on tour in the near future.
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