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Craven Idol's Sadistik Wrath: "We have been held back hundreds if not thousands of years trying to create purpose out of children’s tales…"

Interview with Sadistik Wrath from Craven Idol
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 03 August 2021, 10:06 PM

Charming, yet brutal, classic but sounding ugly and ultra-raw in nature. This image that one can imagine in his / her mind, may as well serve the old prowess, the feverish fiends of the past. But it has already been proven that the past is alive, it returned to haunt and became part of the present's legacy. There is no escape only embrace. Certainly maintaining the past in their minds, souls and talents, stand Craven Idol from the UK. Their doctrine of extreme Metal, the blending of the almighty powers that started an unwavering wave that has been swarming within Metal music ever since the late 80s, comes live and in one's face in their new album, “Forked Tongues”. Steinmetal talked with the band's leader, Sadistik Wrath, or the Immolator of Sadistik Wrath, about the new record, the undying motivation to create it brutal and more…

Hello Mr. Wrath, or shall I call you Vrath, it is great to have you for this interview for Metal Temple online Magazine, how have you been doing?

Immolator of Sadistik Wrath will do just fine. Thanks for having me on!

I heard that the gloves are off in the UK in regards to the restrictions on Covid-19, such an amazing assurance by your government, isn’t that too risky, in particular since that Delta variant is double the power than the British one?

Ha! I’ll try to remain apolitical here, but yes, it’s fucking clownshoes. Ha!

Talking about the pandemic, which will eventually lead me to your new record, how do you feel about it overall? I know that there have been those saying that it is a hoax, a means of controlling the public by governments that wanted to have a sort of a captive hold over their people.

Well, the pandemic sucks of course. Every hundred years or so there’s a plague… usually the result of some stupid shit we’ve done (this time: interfering with pangolins in an indecent manner). Can’t say I buy into any of these conspiracy theories… they are borne from people feeling insignificant in a capitalistic society and wishing they mattered. This is why we invent gods and mythologies to somehow justify a meaningless existence… But I can tell you another thing for free, not a single one of these government nitwits could as much as organise a piss-up in a pro-bono brewery.

You guys are set to release your third album, “Forked Tongues”. Honestly, I can’t really say that I heard about this phrase ever, and it sounds kind of cryptic. Can you tell what is the nature of this phrase, origins and what stands behind it?

To speak with forked tongues means speak untruthfully or deceitfully. It’s somewhat similar to two-facedness, the pronged imagery pointing to ulterior motives. It also aligns with the general theme of craven idols wheeling and dealing…

Eliran Kantor sure made you an amazing artwork, his style is quite special I might add, displaying a vision that might be rather disturbing for some people, yet your intention is what counts. From one end it looks like a battle between good and evil, while mankind from below watches, while from the other end, it looks like a mutated version of the chariots of fire. Please explain on what am I looking at exactly

The painting was greatly inspired by Hokusai’s ‘The Dragon Of Smoke Escaping From Mount Fuji’. In our cover Fuji is replaced by Aetna, the dragon by Typhon, and Hakone by Sicily. Zeus descends from the heavens to challenge Typhon… and the battle ensues. On the back cover we can see a giant scorching wave approaching, Cerberus standing tall, the four winds blowing, and the other Olympian gods fleeing in the form of birds. The main focus is, of course, the battle of the gods… whilst the multitudes are standing in desolation. Yet the only ‘true’ thing on the cover are these very people… the gods do not exist outside their minds… yet the consequences are very real indeed.

In your view, mankind has been making a variety of stupid moves, probably for centuries. How does “Forked Tongues” celebrate this sort of stupidity and lack of awareness of what is going on in your perspective?

“You can’t trust people. People like Coldplay and voted for the Nazis”, as is stated in Peep Show! Anyhow, the album focuses primarily on the self-shackling of man… mainly through entirely made-up religions… and these days by currency. We have been held back hundreds if not thousands of years trying to create purpose out of children’s tales.

When it comes to good and evil, in relation to mankind, there have been sayings that portrayed that man, in its very existence, is evil. So, is everything else just a mask with a potential to be scratched away showing a true face? What does your belief system tell you about that?

If there are no gods then there is no binary concept good and evil. The gods are a reflection of the human psyche… his guilt, his shame… Man is a selfish being with a limited timespan during which he strives to immortalize himself. The gods are what man wants to be… but they are just as flawed, as they are created by him.

I am positive that the recent pandemic elevated your animosity towards the public and governments’ lack of sense, is the pandemic reflected within the lines of “Forked Tongues”?

I can’t say I was surprised by people’s behavior … The album was completed in 2019, before we knew anything about the pandemic, though, so we’ll see next record!

One of the major aspects of the band that it has been true to form, refusing to bow down to anything new that the Metal market offers in order to maintain relevance, and let’s be honest, who can really decide that. Nonetheless, Craven Idol through the record sounds rather diverse even within its spectrum of Black meets Thrash Metal. Would you say that there was a sort of progress musically for the band this time around?

I like to use the term ‘old school extreme metal’ when describing our music… in this I don’t necessarily refer to anything old, but that pioneering spirit of those the late ‘80s. Everything was possible… genres hadn’t put everything into boxes and set up a ‘framework’ of what death metal should do or what thrash should do. Metal wasn’t about worshipping others… but your own ideas. This spirit can exist again… but what it takes is for more bands to think unconventionally…. Rather than following the past like an IKEA construction manual.

That is very well put indeed. In your view, how does a record such as “Forked Tongues” shines within its segment of the Metal market, which also offers a variety of your deadly mixture of Metal? What makes “Forked Tongues” a record that is far beyond expectation?

With Forked Tongues we try to invoke the spirit of old school extreme metal from the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. A time when the rules were few and the innovation ran free. Copying others carried the heavy sentence of exile, leading bands (even countries) to develop their own sound. Forked Tongues doesn’t try to be anything but its own thing… and I believe therein lies the advantage. Of course, it’s significantly easier to market something with a genre tag, but what’s the point of sounding like another Incantation clone?

In contrast to your previous two records, how would you describe the intensity of “Forked Tongues”, which no doubt rattles the cage with an enticing ferocity?

With all due respect to our past selves, this record blows everything we did before out of the water. Of course, it’s an age-old cliché for a band to laud their newest work as their best. The intensity on this album is the accumulation of years of rehearsing, hours spent in the rehearsal room by Heretic Blades and I, then listening to those hours of rehearsal and seeing what works. After ‘The Shackles Of Mammon’ we didn’t take any sort of break and just kept writing… then embarked on a tour with Mystifier for a month. It’s the musical chemistry borne out of this that you hear on Forked Tongues!

As a songwriter, and you have been for quite a long time, also with experience from other bands, how did you feel that “Forked Tongues” continued to develop you forward? Would you say that the songwriting process of the album challenged you in a way?

Even with my 20ish years as a songwriter, Forked Tongues was extremely challenging and not only because of the lyrical concept. Of course, there are the longer songs, but it is also technically on a different level to previous albums.

Challenges aside, it is also the album that saw us work closer as a band than ever before. Songs were all jammed with the full line-up and experienced many a tweak… all thanks to the above-mentioned chemistry. I’m fairly used to writing by myself (or just with a drummer), so it did also mean losing an element level of control… but then a big part of writing is about problem solving and four heads are better than one.

The album’s sound is highly raw, dirty, picture perfect for an 80s Bathory album, but also the early sound of Venom sparked in my ear every now and then. What made you have the album sound “uglier” so to speak, so much rawness? Is it a sort of longing for the old days of extremity?

You’re more or less spot on there. The right production is incredibly important for extreme music. A lot of modern polished productions just suck the soul out of metal. Bathory and Venom are not only massive influences, but also bands that put passion above perfection. It is this attitude that we aimed to portray and producer Tom Dring of Vagrant Studios delivered the goods. We also wanted to bring some of the intensity of our live sound to record, so we used a very similar set up as we do on the road. Tom then turned things up to 11 and unleashed the dynamics… and what you get is Forked Tongues!

Earlier on we talked about challenges, now since the record was probably record and engineered while the restrictions were still on, were there any hardships that prevented you from being on your own scheduled time?

The pandemic did indeed delay the record, but not in the expected way. We actually recorded ‘Forked Tongues’ back in 2019, before the pandemic hit. Lots of factors then affected the release (along with a vinyl pressing bottleneck), which delayed things further…

Throughout the record you provide several faces of the band in its old school nature, yet I believe that the final track, “The Gods Have Left Us For Dead”, really sealed the deal for the entire album. The music is rigid, atmospheric, even when things get cracking, and displaying your efforts. How do you find this track? What can you tell about the narrative of the song?

We are extremely proud of this song and have been pleasantly surprised to find it’s many a listener’s favourite! Despite being a long number it came together very quickly indeed… probably because it was the last track to be written and the whole band was fully immersed in the record. The movements of the song are very smooth and the sections almost wrote themselves.

Story-wise, this is obviously the end… Typhon has usurped the Olympians and returned to power the first gods. However, things do not turn out as Typhon’s supporters expected and instead of implementing a new Golden Age, he enslaves mankind to do his bidding. Ultimately, the message is in the title of the song… the gods always shackle man… yet none of these gods are more than a figment of his imagination, and yearning to understand a feeble existence.

The opening track on the other hand is where the shackles are broken, a roaming free destroyer that is fuelled by energy and vengeance, certainly a track that is hard for me to ignore. What can you tell about this track’s vigorous nature?

Starting albums with a strong message of intent is something I’m very keen on. Who really wants to listen to another 2-minute intro of spooky noises?! Just get on with it! The core riffs on Venomous Rites date back to around 2006 when Scourger and I were jamming in as North London basement - so similarly to Typhon – their wrath has been building over a long period of time.

With the events going in the UK, surrounding the release of the restrictions, would you say that Craven Idol is back on the live scene for shows until the end of 2021?

I doubt we will return to the stage until 2022. There are tour plans in motion, some across the pond… we’ll see…

Mr. Wrath, I wish to thank you for your time for doing this interview. Thank you for delivering the goods with “Forked Tongues”, it is quite the inspiration to follow. All the best

Thanks for the interview!


 



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