With so many cool bands out there to check out I offer you some minor guidance by introducing you to DEPRAVED. Anders Ekdahl ©2020
We live in a world where there are literally millions of bands to check out. What do you have that sets you apart?
-I really don’t know. Perhaps the fact that we have all been playing together for a long time and that we all have varied musical tastes and influences. We do not try to resemble this or that group, even if sometimes we can be compared to some. This is inevitable given the number of groups that exist. It probably also comes from the way we understand our instruments. Now’s groups are more formatted, probably because of the internet. And then it becomes difficult to propose new sounds, everything has already been almost done. Now it’s more the productions that change, it’s less natural than before, too bad. The energy and the brutality must come from the musicians, not from the machines, and now this is no longer the case. Groups are overproduced…
How hard was it for you guys to pick a name? What had that name have to have to fit your music?
-No. At the time, I wanted a simple name that expressed something other than death, easily remembered and in line with the texts Kristoff proposed.
What band(s) was it that turned you on to the kind of music you play? What inspires you today?
-When we started, thrash started to decline and Death Metal was at the top. In the 90s, there were already Vader, Cannibal Corpse, Deicide, Bolt thrower, Sinister, Napalm Death…… And there was SLAYER who will remain one of the most violent groups. And we also listened to Heavy Metal and other styles of music. Today, we always listen to the same things. It must sound true and not sanitized. The “living room metal” that smells of lavender, very little for us.
What is the advantages/disadvantages of CD and vinyl these days of internet promotion where digital seems to be king?
-I’m from a generation where owning a vinyl or CD is something. We made the effort to go buy it in store or online, and we have a product in our hands. Digital is abstract. In France there is a return of vinyl records. The release of “Raped Innocence” on vinyl is scheduled for very soon.
I use Spotify and Deezer but only as compliment to buying CDS (it’s easier to just have your phone or pad when your out) but I fear that soon music as we know it will be dead and buried. What are your worries as a band?
-We don’t have to worry about that because we all have jobs and music doesn’t make us any money. What is unfortunate is that a group will work for 1 or 2 years to release a CD and in a few minutes it is on the internet. This does not take into account the work of the musicians. Music has become a disposable consumer product and the work of groups is not paid at fair value. Spotify and Deezer can allow to know new bands, which is the positive point. It’s always better than illegal download sites.
Now some groups make more (if not only) money on tours or by selling beer, wine, thongs and coffee….
What part does art work and lay out play? Any message that you want to bring forth with it?
-We do not transmit any message whatsoever, political, ideological…. We are only 5 morons who make music for fun. And we don’t pretend to lecture people.
Is it a whole different way to promote a band today with all these social media channels? Or do you go about doing promotion the same way? Playing live and word of mouth.
-It’s different but much more superficial. Now everyone films in their room and fiddles with their guitar, the groups post everything and anything to lather or get to know. Metal is anything but that. And very often good groups find themselves drowned in the crowd. Nothing better than a concert, good beer and friends ! Concerning the promotion of the group, the Music Records label does a great job with the CD “Raped Innocence” and we have a certain notoriety in the French underground.
Do you feel like you are a part of a scene, locally, nationally and internationally?
-Yes and no. There too everything has evolved. Everything is more individualistic. We have a certain notoriety at the local and national levels but we are not part of certain networks which can exist in France. It’s always the same bands and labels that take center stage. We know a lot of groups but they are not friends, just acquaintances. With the exception of MORTUARY who are friends and even family ! Internationally, the French scene is not very well known, it’s a shame but it is solely responsible for it.
How much of a touring band are you? Is touring/gigging still a great way of spreading the word of the band?
-We don’t play enough in concerts, not enough for our taste. In fact, it’s still kind of the same bands you see on the posters. Sometimes we’re too Death, sometimes too Grind … and we don’t want to “lick asses” to play either. For tours, you sometimes have to pay 400 to 500 € for each date, and sometimes play first in an almost empty room. Again, the system is rotten. It is the small groups which finance the tours of the large groups. With this system, the scene can only be sclerotic. On the other hand, concerts are a good way to promote the group and sell merchandising. When we play, we often sell a lot, it’s good satisfaction for us.
Another problem is people who only go to big festivals and who don’t go to small concerts. Too bad.
What will the future bring?
-Good question ! We must already get out of this crisis linked to the Coronavirus which blocked everything. We hope everything will return to normal but for the moment it is complicated. As for DEPRAVED, we are composing with a view to releasing a few new titles in early 2021….
Thank you for your interview. Good luck for the future. STAY SAFE & STAY DEPRAVED.