Interview with Satanic Black
Interview conducted by Barbara Williams (Crowley)
Date online: March 1, 2003
What made you form Satanic Black?
Jason and I had already played together under many different names for a great number of years before we officially formed SB. We have quite a history between us dating as far back as 1984. So essentially, it was a natural progression for us to have formed SB.
How did you guys meet?
We met way back in grade school.
Why Satanic Black?
Satanicblack fits our attitudes individually as well as cohesively and it also makes for a most evocative band name, wouldnít you agree?
Yes, I like it.
How would you describe Satanic Black to someone who's never heard your music before?
Heavy, Melodic, and Magical.
How do you write your music? Is there a set guideline or do you write what you feel as you go along?
Nothing we ever do is pre-planned. We run purely from our hearts, atever we pull out, and if the feeling is right lyrically as well as musically, then that is what you hear.
Do you write together or separately?
Do you consciously think about staying in the Satanic Black style or music?
Not really, itís just an extension of us. If you understand SB musically then you already know us as people.
As a musician, do you play other sorts of music on the side or is this your 100% musical taste?
I will not answer for Jason since he is not present. So as for myself, I have always played Randy Roads style, which to me is using an array of compound and composite cord arrangements. With his style of playing having such a profound impact on me, I branched off and studied blues, classical, some funk and/or Jazz. I approach music or CDs as study guides. You can learn a lot just by really listening and studying, something I think most people do not do.
How would you describe (or categorize) your style of vocals? Who have been your role models?
Very diverse and dynamic! Truly original sounding and strong. Ozzy, Blackie Lawless, Bruce Dickinson, Rob Halford, Cronos.
The music scene really changed between the 70's, 80's and 90's. What would you say has been your strongest influence?
Definitely the 70s and 80s, even into the 90s. Metal is cult to the fans. It never seems to go away; itís always under there somewhere.
Which bands are on your list of favorites? If I were to look through your CD collection, what would I find?
If you looked into Jasonís you would find Belinda Carlisle and Shania Twain. Gawd, I canít stand either one *laughs*. In fairness, you would find The Cranberries and Prince, even the Bee Gees in my collection, so who am I to say anything? In all seriousness, we are both into the same metal bands (for the most part): Venom, King Diamond/Mercyful Fate, Death, Sanctuary/Nevermore, Ozzy, Sabbath, Judas Priest, WASP....I could go on for ever...but these are some of the oldies but goodies.
What bands would you liken yourselves to?
SB is its own entity its own being. We donít think we sound like any one band. It may be relevant to say that you could hear a history of listening to Metal in our music because our songs are so diverse from one to the next.
Which cities have you played?
Mainly right around Utah and the surrounding western states.
Any plans to go on tour? If so, where and when and with whom?
We would love to--after we finish recording our new CD. California, and Texas would be a nice start. Both states have great Metal scenes and awesome Metal fans.
How do you compare the Death and Black metal scene here in the States and in Europe?
There are only a handful of bands that I find original and worth listening that come from Europe. Venom, Cradle of Filth, Moonspell, and Dimmu Borgir. The rest of the corpse-face painted idiots sound like a monotone merry-go-round. And here in the States it isnít much better. Besides ourselves, I would say Slayer and Marilyn Manson are the 2 bands left that still write pure original kick ass Metal.
When did you start playing and how old were you when you became interested in metal?
We have both into Metal since a very early age; I would say around 9 or 10 years of age.
Have your parents and friends always been supportive?
Outside of playing Metal, what kinds of things do you enjoy doing?
We both enjoy movies a great deal. Jay is into playing video games on PS or a PC. I, on the other hand, donít really get into games all that much. I do spend a great deal of time in restaurants, though; I am a bit of a fan for great foods and drinks.
How do you feel about mainstream bands, especially those who at one point started out as Underground?
Hey, good for them. Marilyn Manson and even Cradle of Filth signing with Sony is a perfect example of this. If you can stay true to yourself and cross over into mainstream, bravo brotha!
Do you feel that Death and Black Metal bands have it more difficult to gain recognition compared to those who play other types of metal?
Not if you're good enough.
I have just recently heard some heavy criticism from a metal fan who finds that Black metal is no longer acceptable because the satanic content most albums have. As an atheist he sees this as a form of religion. What's your take on this?
First of all, just because a band shouts out blasphemies and paints inverted crosses all over themselves and most ignorantly, use a pentagram on the CD cover, does not make them Satanic nor does it mean that the CD contains Satanic content. That whole notion is because of christian propaganda over many centuries. Anton LaVey's notorious Church of Satan defines what is Satanic and what is not! Unless that guy is an actual registered member of the Church of Satan and thoroughly understands what Satanism is, I donít think he qualifies to make that assessment. So his comments are nothing more than an ignorant opinion, nothing more.
Noticeably, your lyrics are very strong and straightforward in content. I have just recently read an article (on anus.com) about boycotting Christian metal. What are your feelings about that? What does "Metal" actually mean to you?
Well, both of us are definitely not fond of christian metal, and never have been. Metal is a way of life not just a genre of music. To us the phrase christian metal is a conundrum. Metal has nothing to do with christianity. Metal is for free thinkers and true artistic expression. Christianity is for god fearing, senseless morons.
What do you think about the Internet and the way bands can promote themselves these days?
We have made SB the name that it is today because of the Internet. I have referred to the Internet as a Marketing Supernova, and essentially, it really is just that. A band can really put itself out there using the Internet as a tool. A band can exchange riffs via the Internet to write songs, say if the band was scattered around the country or even the world, for that matter. It really is an excellent source to get communications out quickly and immediately. The Internet can really be an assent as long as you donít get to caught up in it and let yourself be deluded.
Do you think you're attracting new fans or are you pretty much catering for the ones who have been with you from the beginning?
We are always reaching new people. We get e-mails from new fans all the time. And, of course, we have our fans that have been there from the beginning. The feedback from our fans has truly been phenomenal. You guys rule!!!
Have you gotten any gifts from fans? Which would you say would be the coolest or weirdest?
Again, I will not answer for Jason, only for myself. I would say the coolest gift I have ever received from a fan was oral sex. That was a great gift. So you female fans remember that. Barbara?
When you guys began writing for the new CD what did you hope to achieve? Do you believe you've accomplished that?
Well, that is when I formed UnHolyGoat Productions. We wanted a better Production and more control of everything involved from recording to printing covers. Satan Speaks was voted as one of Utahís Top 50 CD releases, so that was gratifying and a testament to what we could accomplish to say the least.
Are you pleased with the current record sales or will there be more promoting?
For two dedicated Metal fans, yes! We are only two people doing everything, and weíve done it pretty damn good. There are a few things in the past I did that I wish I hadnít, but its time to keep moving forward. We will definitely have more funds and more experience for our next recording. We are also looking to have a lot of fun doing it. If it doesnít feel right, why do it?
Have you thought about getting on a Compilation CD such as WWIII, the Identity series, or even by playing a tribute to one of your favorite bands?
Not really. Pperhaps later we may explore that avenue. For now, we have our hands full.
What are the future plans of your band?
We are currently working on a new CD. We each have faced many personal challenges which delayed this from being done sooner; however, we are back on track and we have some really killer tunes to be put out there. We're very excited about this new CD.
Do you have or are planning to have a side-project?
Thadeus has a few projects on the back burner, but for now everything is focused on getting a new SB CD recorded and out to market.
When will we see the next CD release? Is there any specific label you may be using?
This new CD will be an independent release under our own label, UnHolyGoat Productions. We are aiming for Summer 2003.
Any hope to see you on tour in the El Paso, Texas area???
Could you tell us a little about the lyrical concept for your last album?
It was a mixture of fact and Horror Fantasy, sometimes crossing themselves; some really cool points of views, and some really fucked up murder, blood, and guts. Definitely stimulating, to say the least.
Black metal is still a rather limited genre that generally doesn't attract large crowds. Do you think this is the fate of extreme music for all future?
Personally, we hate genres. Whoever started these lame-ass categories should be shot. If itís good Metal, it will not have a genre; it will be universal and appeal to a wide array of people, not just face painters or corpse grinders.
How do you see yourself as a role model (or idol) to many young people who listen to and who get into your music?
Never really thought about it.
Who is your audience?
Our audience is what Magister Rex Church of the Church of Satan calls "Our Iron Youth!" which is a term he coined to describe a young person's independent nature which allows them not be affected by the pestilent Christian rules. "Iron Youth" are the world's future, our future innovators. We want to show to our fans that we are our own. We are genuine and we do it our way and we donít really care what our critics think. We are Satanic Black!!
What holds your band together?
A need or desire to write kick ass Metal. Thadeus and I have known each other for 20 years or so. We are not related, but nonetheless, we are Blood Brothers. There are many things we have in common and many likes we share. We also are very different in many ways, but at the same time we are similar.
Any last words to fans?
A giant Hail to the fans of Satanic Black. You know who you are! Crush your enemies! Hail Satan!
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