I know very little about the metal scene in Balkan but I am steadily getting to know more and more about it band by band. PANIKK is a thrash metal band in the old tradition. Anders Ekdahl ©2012
The Bay Area thrash metal sound is almost 30 years old and still new bands keep popping up adopting that style. What is so great about it?
-For us, it is the best feeling in the world to hear fast, energetic, in-your-face thrash metal music. We also like the lyrics because they are mostly about real problems and not that much fictional.
Speaking of Bay Area thrash. What band(s) is in your opinion the most influential? What bands do metalheads of today have to check out?
-Our influences are: Vio-lence, Exodus, early Metallica, Testament, Forbidden, Dark Angel, OverKill etc. I think these bands will always sound good. But there are also some new bands we are very fond of such as Vektor, Warbringer, Evile etc. We could go one for ages. I almost forgot you have to check Slovenian bands (best way to check them at metal-archives.com).
You guys have an album coming out in early 2013. What kind of reception do you think that one will get? How will it fit into the global metal scene of 2013?
We put two songs from the new album out already and the reception in Slovenia is great. A lot of Slovenian metalheads are really excited. There is also some approval we’re getting from abroad. We think the album is really energetic and we put a lot of effort in it. There is something going on they call thrash revival so we are not afraid how the album will fit into today’s global scene.
When you come from a place not known for its great metal scene does that bring with more trouble spreading the band’s name? Do bands that come from Germany or Sweden have it easier to get picked up by fans because of the history of great bands?
-Not that there is easier way of getting picked up by fans because of other famous bands at least not in the direct way, but it is stuck in people’s mind so they can assume some band is good because the from the same country as their own favourite band. It is bands choice if they want to do good music and work hard for success. What is easier probably would be larger market or bigger number of fans if you like who support the band.
Even with the strange (native?) spelling of your name people still get it. How hard is it to communicate in a language not your own in order to get your message through?
-Actually, the name is intentionally spelled with double K, so it’s more mesmerizing and it doesn’t mean anything in our language but it actually stands for panic. So there is the connection.
Is there such a thing as a lyrical theme to thrash metal that has to be followed?
-Not in particular really, but we focused lyrically more on every day problems that are surrounding us or we are noticing on the street and themes about death involving politics that went on in the past or are present today. We could do any kind of lyrics but that were the ideas we came up with at that point of writing songs.
How do you know that you are thrash metal and not any other genre of metal? Is there a rule book you guys need to follow? I wonder because I have a hard time defining what is and isn’t thrash and I’ve been into it since the beginning.
-Well to be honest we want to believe we are thrash metal band because this is the genre that we like the most, but you can here different influences from different genres. We don’t think there are rules to make music you just do what you feel is right and of course every band out there is unique in their own way making their music.
I know so very little about the whole Balkan metal scene. What metal scene do you have in your country?
-In Slovenia we have a lot of great bands in different genres. We are like giant family everyone knows one another but still it is very small market. There still is opportunity for success you just have to work hard as for anything else in your life!
Is it possible to tour the Balkan without any conflicts? How united are the metal fans across borders?
-We have to admit we haven’t been outside our country yet, so don’t have the info about touring abroad. As you know yourself how metal fans treat each other there is no difference in this part of the world. We are all in for the same cause and that is good metal music.
When the future release of your album is so far ahead what plans do you have up till that date?
– Do a few of gigs around country, nothing is yet confirmed but something will come up. We will certainly do a lot of jamming together, practicing. We still go to school so this go along with all the music stuff.