SPIKERS is another cool Ukrainian band that you oughta check out immediately. Anders Ekdahl ©2017

Do you notice that there is an anticipation for you to release an album? Have you built a large enough following for people to eagerly await a new album?
-We don’t have feeling that our album is awaited. We just have desire to release our new material. And not everybody listened to our previous one yet. Well, people write us asking if we have something new, about merch and so on. As it turned out, people from other countries are interested in us, rather than from Ukraine. For example, they call us to Russia, Latin America, where there are batshit crazy metalheads and that’s cool. That would be great to perform at international festival!

Is it important for you that a new album picks up where the previous left off? How important is continuity??
-Based on my observations, if fans like you, they want to follow you, want to know what’s new. And, surely, new material must please them. But there mustn’t be any cranking out for quantity or sales. If a musician is productive genius and hammers out hits one after one, that’s just marvelous! But do to make mishmash, frequently and quickly, just to stay on top, I disfavour that.

Was it hard for you to come up with a sound for this album that you all could agree on?
-We don’t have any special worries about the sound at all; we are only guided by our resources. The only thing that matters is to make the recording clear and appropriate for listening to. No doubt, that would be great to throw bones into some fantabulous studio and to record mind blowing sound. This may happen someday, and may not. We recorded our debut release “In Coffins” with just fucking 58$!

How important are the lyrics to you? What kind of topics do you deal with?
-Yes, lyrics are as important as music. Word is a powerful weapon actually. When strong lyrics fall on mighty riffs – this is success. As for our lyrics, it’s about war, about its absurdity. About society degradation, violence and post-apocalypse. Not being native speakers, it’s hard to express out thoughts to the full extent, but we work at it, and for now within the limits of what we play, it’s enough for us.

How important is the cover art work for you? How much do you decide in choosing art work?
-As for me, album cover is an independent creative operation. And it’s one of the main parts of the release. Bumping into an album in the internet, people first consume it with their eyes. And within these few seconds the impression about the band forms and people may predict what to expect from the artist. Looking back at the classical covers by significant bands, we can admit that they are individual works of art, completing audio tracks and objectifying the message put into the songs. For our release “In Coffins” (2016), we used film frame from the movie “Cargo 200”. As for me, it excellently depicts the album message and especially the title track “In Coffins”. It embodies all the absurdity of war with the soldier being posthumously awarded.

How important is having a label to back you up today when you can just release your music on any sort of platform online? Are there any negative consequences to music being too readily available to fans?
-We are just looking for a label. Internet is packed with music and it becomes very difficult to find something for your playlist or download if you’re not recommended to do so. That’s why we are looking for a label. To make people of influence recommend us to the audience; and then listeners can decide whether they like us or not. Having recorded our release, we uploaded it into Bandcamp. For a long time we hadn’t been revealing the country and the members, it had been the experiment to see if people would like us or not. As it turned out, even not all our friends clicked “play” button because they didn’t know who Spikers was and they didn’t want to waste their time. After creating pages in social networks and posting a few reviews by foreign periodicals, local audience began to take interest in us. Our people love everything from abroad. There you have it.

I guess that today’s music climate makes it harder for a band to sell mega platinum. How do you tackle the fact that downloading has changed how people consume music?
-We don’t have any metal climate in our country. So we’re not talking sales at all. The only way is to make some money at merch and live performances, and an album in the internet is some kind of presentation of what audience can get at the live show.

Does nationality matter today when it comes to breaking big. Does nationality play a part in if or not you will make it big internationally?
-Yes and no. If the band’s material is of good quality and guys stubbornly move themselves forward, to they will likely make the scene and they will be noticed at the world stage. But unfortunately metal/rock wasn’t born at our post-soviet territory. People mostly watch England and USA. We have another brainwork, mentality. In our countries we only learn how to make such music. But if somewhere in Africa there appears super metal band and plays something never heard before, that will be success, that’s for sure. And it’s the internet that will help them.

I use Spotify and Deezer but only as compliment to buying CDS (it’s easier to just have your phone or pad when you’re 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 such worries. Because the world changes very fast, new gadgets emerge constantly. It remains pertinent to release physical media only for narrow circle of people, true style devotees, who consider physical media as collector value. We are the same people and we are focused on them.

What does the future hold for you?
-If we don’t prepare anything by ourselves, then the future will bring us nothing.

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