Gotta admit that that I am not that down with the UK punk scene anymore so this was another band I had no idea existed until I got this chance to interview them. SYSTEM OF HATE. So read this one answered by Pat and then check em out. Anders Ekdahl ©2017
What pressure is there in releasing an album compared to a demo? Do you feel that there is a sort of pressure to succeed when you release and album, that it sorta is for real now?
-For us the pressure is there, we all have jobs so fitting recording / rehearsing in round work is always required. We write the songs for us not for a given market so if it failed, it failed but we would have been very disappointed. We knew it was recorded well and we were all getting nervous, because we sat on it for a while waiting to release it and couldn’t wait for people to hear it. Once you start getting brilliant reviews and trusted friends tell you how good the album is, you know you are on to a winner. We know if more people hear it they will like it, but the world has changed, younger people seem to prefer individual tracks to albums, downloads etc. It’s a tough market place for an older band. So yes, there is lots of pressure but we do this for enjoyment, ha ha.
When you release a record of any sort what kind of expectations do you have on it? Do you set up goals for it?
-For me personally, I’ve got to like it, know we didn’t try and replicate anyone else, know we wrote the best songs we could and enjoy the recording process. It’s fantastic when a total stranger walks up to you and says that’s one hell of an album. You have to sell a few to get to the next one, as a self financing band, the sales from one release pays for the next, or that’s what we are hoping.
When you release an album and you go out and play live and people know your songs, how weird is that? That people know what you have written on your own?
-It’s an amazing feeling, we played in Rotherham recently and a guy right at the front sang every word to the whole set, it’s a great feeling for a small band like us.
Do you feel that you have to follow in the footsteps of the last album for a new when it comes to lyrics and art work for everything so that those that bought the previous record will recognize your sound?
-Yes for us it is important, we decided to take the dark punk path, lyrically we can’t change, the common running theme is death, war, destruction, the bible, corrupt governments / leaders, we are all screwed, but we do like to think there is some ‘hope’ somewhere in there. Musically we wouldn’t want to change either, we are always going to try and write better songs but the vibe will remain. Dark songs for dark souls.
Do you feel like you are a part of a greater community because you play in a band?
-It’s wonderful, you can walk into a pub / bar and not know anyone, and if there’s a band on, someone will know you or you can soon find someone to talk to. In the punk world I find everyone extremely friendly and helpful, the punk rock family as they call it. I’ve got loads of mates in Barnsley I’ve met through music, it’s a great gang to be part of.
How hard/easy is it to come up with new songs that that still are you but doesn’t sound like anything you’ve already written?
-I wouldn’t say it was easy. You just start a riff or chord progression etc, if it’s remotely like something we’ve already done, you just throw it away. We are always trying to improve our playing ability and our writing, so we push each other.
What influences/inspires you today? Where do you draw inspiration from? Is it important to have some sort of message?
-A message is very important, most of our stuff, it’s what you think and what you take from the song, we want out listeners to interpret the meanings for themselves. The general inspiration comes from this corrupt World we are all in-prisoned in. We are angry, so sometimes the music sounds angry, ha ha.
We hear about what state the record industry is in. Then we hear that cd sales are increasing. As a band that releases records do you notice the state the industry is in?
– I think the record industry only works for the likes of Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran, they put massive, massive amounts into advertising and promotion, and the straights (music buying public) can’t be bothered to look for decent thought provoking music, so they settle for safe easy listening crap. We have a small market to appeal to and they are very loyal, we do okay but we could do better, that keeps us pushing to improve.
What is your opinion on digital verses physical?
-I know our fans are mainly of a certain age (older) and they like something in their hand to look at and read, as I do myself. For me, vinyl is a steak dinner, a cd is a chicken dinner and a digital download is a McDonald’s meal, hope that helps.
What lies in the future?
-We are currently writing our 2nd album, we aren’t rushing it because we have to try to improve on “Unhallowed Ground” and that’s not going to be easy. We may put an acoustic e.p out in the meantime, we have plenty of gigs and of course, Rebellion Festival in August. The future’s bright but in a very dark way.