Thursday, 30 June 2011

AFTER THE BOMBS - Interview 2008

AFTER THE BOMBS were a female fronted heavy metallic crust band form Montreal, Canada. Formed in 2004 after HELLBOUND disbanded, AFTER THE BOMBS went on to release three EP’s and full length album called “Relentless Onslaught” on The Total End Records. The following interview was conducted with Janick (vocals) and Jason (guitar) via email in 2008 before the band embarked on their Eastern European tour. The interview was originally published in Agitate #9.
Can you give us some history to the band? When did AFTER THE BOMBS start? Who plays what? What happened to HELLBOUND?
Jason: AFTER THE BOMBS started January 2004, HELLBOUND had not practised in several months, a few of us wanted to move in a different direction. Stian joined and at that point it was: Janick – vocals, Jason – guitar, Stian – guitar, Josh – bass and Clint – drums. Stian left the band in 2006 after the west coast tour to go back to Norway so it’s now Matt Strong from ANOTHER OPPRESSIVE SYSTEM playing guitar.
Did you start AFTER THE BOMBS with the set idea of specifically wanting to play metallic crust? Apart from the obvious influences of AMEBIX, SACRILEGE, AXEGRINDER etc, what other bands influence AFTER THE BOMBS?
Jason: I think the idea when we started was to play something similar to S.D.S. Janick changed her vocal style a little. Stain added a lot of speed picking not just metal style but a lot of 80’s Norwegian hardcore like SO MUCH HATE, KAFKA PROCESS, BARN AV REGNBUEN who used really fast guitar style. We also owe much to SACRILEGE, ONSLAUGHT, DEATHSIDE and ANTISECT.
Who writes the lyrics? Are they written by one member or is it a collective effort
Janick: I write all the lyrics… as the others are illiterate ahhaa.
Both the “Spoils Of War” and “Bloody Aftermath” EP’s were released around the same time. Are the songs on both EP’s part of the same recording session? What about the “Relentless Onslaught” album?
Jason: We did two recording sessions around the same time, we did the 12” in a fancy studio two hours outside Montreal in March 2006 and we did a digital recording in a scummy basement for the two EP’s in April 2006. Both were fun for different reasons!!
Can you tell us about the new album “Relentless Onslaught”? Are you happy with how it turned out? What kind of response have you been getting?
Janick: Yes we are very pleased with it. We had so much troubles with the mix and releasing it due to some fucker that screwed us over… but at the end it all came out pretty good. The response is pretty amazing. I didn’t think it would sell out so fast…
Your records always come packaged with great looking artwork. How did you get involved with Rat Grinder who did the “Spoils Of War” and “Bloody Aftermath” EP’s and Marald who did the “Relentless Onslaught” LP? What is it that you like about Rat and Maralds artwork?
Jason: Rat Grinder got in touch with us, we checked out his artwork and were all blown away. Really old school Mid style, he draws with an 80’s mindset. Marald is a real pro we contacted him cause he did a lot of artwork for our friends (STATE OF FEAR, DEFORMED CONSCIENCE) and we really liked his work. I think the gatefold art is some of the best punk artwork I have ever seen!!!
You’ve all been involved in the DIY punk scene for sometime now playing in numerous bands over the years like HELLBOUND, FIERCE etc. What is it that keeps you interested in the punk scene and playing in a DIY punk band?
Janick: For me punk is my life, punk music saved me if I can say that without sounding too chessy.. haha! I was very isolated and antisocial when I was young and punk just brought me a different outlook on life and how I wanted to live my own. It also provided me with an awesome group of friends which I consider my family… maybe more than my actual family which I don’t really have any contact with since I’m 10. Punk is raw, fierce and true and that’s what I like about it. I can express myself without being judged every ten seconds and people understand my feelings and thoughts way more than the average blokes. It’s easier to be who you want to be in the punk scene cause most of the people have been through rough times and understand where you’re coming from.
Do you get to play many gigs? Have you played much outside of Montreal? Can you tell us about your forthcoming European tour 2008?
Janick: Well after Stian moved back to Norway we didn’t play a gig for one year… cause we had to find another guitar player. When we did we had to teach him all the old songs. Since then we have played a few gigs here in Montreal and in the US (east and west coast gigs).
The tour in Europe is booked by Koppa from Agipunk and will take place in May 2008 in Italy, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland and Austria. We are very excited about it! Thanx to Koppa and Agipunk for the great opportunity.
What’s the scene like in Montreal? Is there many divisions in the Montreal punk scene? What are some positive and negative aspects of the Montreal punk scene?
Janick: The scene in Montreal is good… I think but of course there’s ups and downs and divisions… cliques if I can say… like everywhere and sometimes I really despise it. But I can say that for the past two years punks have been more together… I mean we mix more styles together… like crust and 77’ punk rockers and oi! It’s cool and I think it’s way better that way, there’s more people at shows and everyone benefits from it. Let’s hope it stays that way…
Janick, you started the Katacombes venue in Montreal. Can you tell us more about the Katacombes? When and why you started the venue?
Janick: Well I started Katacombes with my friend Claudie after L’X our old venue was being kicked out of it’s local by the University of Quebec in Montreal in 2004, after seven years of operation. It took us two years and in November 2006, we finally opened the Katacombes. It’s an 18+ venue of 165 capacities. There are also workshops and jam spaces on the second floor. I started Katacombes cause I can’t do anything else in life than work in the punk scene and for the punk scene… ahhah! This is my life! I couldn’t picture myself working in a grocery store or in a restaurant after dedicating more than ten years of my life doing L’X. So I decided that the eviction of L’X was not going to stop me and I worked very hard with Claudie to open the Katacombes. It’s doing great. Bands that are planning on stopping in Montreal should definitely contact me. Email: coopkatacombes@hotmail.com or www.myspace.com/katacombes
On the subject of the Katacombes you recently organized the “A Varning From Montreal” DIY punk festival. How did it go? What bands played? Do you plan on organizing anymore “A Varning From Montreal” festivals?
Janick: The Varning fest was to celebrate the first anniversary of Katacombes and it was fucking awesome… It was the first time that Montreal had a festival like that. Here are the bands that played: MEANWHILE, WARCRY, INEPSY, WORLD BURNS TO DEATH, CAUSTIC CHRIST, BORN DEAD ICONS, COMPILCATIONS, us, BROKEN, CAREER SUICIDE, MAN THE CONVEYORS, AGHAST, BOMBED OUT and THE OMEGAS. I’m planning on organizing one every year… if our financial situation allows us to do so… we’ll see…
What bands are you currently listening to at the moment? What are some of your favourite eighties crust records?
Jason: A lot of Japanese hardcore, AGE, CROW, EFFIGY, WORLD BURNS TO DEATH, DARK THRONE. I like a lot of the newer metal bands like TOXIC HOLOCAUST and MIDNIGHT. As far as 80’s crust records, I think HELLBASTARD is a band that always gets overlooked but is awesome. The second SACRILEGE LP is a great record. DEVIATED INSTINCT later stuff is very good slow crust. Too many good records in the 80’s!!!
Janick: SACRILEGE demos, new AGE LP, CROW, WARCRY – Deprogram 2006 LP, CRIMINAL DAMAGE, WAR RIPPER, WORLD BURNS TO DEATH… my favourite 80’s crust records would be SACRILEGE demos and “Behind The Realms Of Madness” LP, ANTISECT – “Out From The Void” EP, ANTI SYSTEM – “Take A Look At Life” LP, DEVIATED INSTINCT, HELLBASTARD, HELLKRUSHER – “Buildings For The Rich” LP, MISERY – “Born, Fed, Slaughtered” EP and “Production Through Destruction” LP a classic not to be forgotten. BASTARD, NAUSEA… POISON IDEA (it’s not a crust band but it’s definitely one of the most brilliant band to ever existed!) There are many many more but I’ll stop right here…haha!
Anything else you want to say or feel needs to be addressed? What’s next for AFTER THE BOMBS?
Janick: Touring Japan hopefully soon!!! Anyone wants to invite us! Ahha!
Thanx for the interview Chris.
AFTER THE BOMBS, PO Box 80-Station C, Montreal, QC, HEL 4J7, Canada. www.myspace.com/afterthebombs 
  

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