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Interview - Csaba Zvekan (Exorcism)

Interview with Csaba Zvekan from Exorcism
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 31 October 2013, 12:05 PM

Prolific vocalist, musician, and all-round Metal man, Csaba Zvekan has been keeping himself busy, from setting up the supergroup RAVEN LORD to another project, EXORCISM, that is due to release its debut album next year. Hailed for their similarities to BLACK SABBATH, EXORCISM finally signed to Golden Core Records this year and are all ready to give fans a proper Metal meltdown. Steinmetal had a talk with Zvekan about the future.

Hello Csaba, how have you been? It is a hell of an honor to have you for this interview for Metal Temple.

Hello to Metal-Temple and the readers. It’s always a pleasure and a fun thing doing these interviews with you.

Recently I had the opportunity to review your new Heavy Metal supergroup RAVEN LORD. But, as if it was in a blink of an eye, you came up with a new band called EXROCISM, consisting of nearly the entire RAVEN LORD crew, switching to traditional Doom Metal. What was that all about?

Well, you know what they say. Once you get some really heavy machinery set in motion it’s really hard to stop it, hahahaha. RAVEN LORD took some time to get in gear as it was done from scratch. EXORCISM was ready to go for quiet some time now. It’s like the ace you got holding in your hand just waiting for the right time to come out. I’ve prepared the two bands pretty much side by side. As the music is completely different from another I couldn’t possibly merge the two and call it the same. Also, I worked with a couple of other musicians on the EXORCISM material before but didn’t like the recordings. The originality, mood and production were pretty much gone. By that time there was already interest from a record company. So I had to find quickly a new line up that works. My main criterion was for all of us to work together as a team. I knew back then that working with Joe Stump was already easy and going on tour together and hanging out was never a problem. I mean, you wanna be on the road with people that are fun and professional at the same time. And then we have Lucio Manca, yet another very talented musician. I saw what he was capable of playing plus I appreciate and trust his opinion and input in musical matters. He is one of those guys who doesn’t talk much during our work, but when he says something the room stands still and everybody listens to what he has to say. So for the last piece of the puzzle we found Garry King who is a mind reader and knows exactly what the songs needs. His work ethics and talent are truly amazing. It feels like I’ve known these guys all my life.

As for the “traditional Doom Metal” part, to be very honest with you, I had to look up the definition of the genre “Doom Metal”. Occasionally I’m a bit “old school” when it comes to defining the genre, still thinking I’m playing “Heavy Metal” all this time.

I wonder, what is the vision behind the existence of EXORCISM? What do you think is so special in its substance as an old school Metal act lurking in a scene slowly modernizing?

This is a very good question. The vision behind all this is to keep up the roots of our music that we grew up with. If we forget the art from the past and don’t reintegrate those parts in today’s more modern music then all this would be lost over time. If nobody would play Mozart anymore we would not know who he was and how it sounded. And yet even after over two hundred years, we still play his music. It’s pretty much the same philosophy. With EXORCISM I want to create great melodies, dark themes, and hypnotic riffs with lava grooves in a very modern package but clearly with ties to the birthplace of “Heavy Metal”.

In general, why choose the name EXORCISM? Does it have anything to do with occult themes or was it just for the thrill of it?

Our wonderful manager Axel Wiesenauer from Rock ‘N Growl Management picked the band name for us after hearing the demo songs. There is one song however, with the very same title. We can discuss the lyrical content of that particular song once the record is out. Don’t want to spoil it too much for now. I think the name EXORCISM fits perfectly to the music we make and looking at the logo today I must say it was a very wise choice. It’s a great name as it deals with purifying your soul from evil demons, if you believe in such a concept. My lyrical themes usually are a bit darker - about the approaching apocalypse and doomsday scenarios. As I always say; if I would be in the movie industry I would probably be a writer for science-fiction and horror movies. This is usually how I like to paint my music.

In the near future the band will issue its debut album. What is expected? Will it be a conceptual piece?

Yes, the record is scheduled for early 2014. We’re totally excited, although there is definitely an overall concept for EXORCISM. The individual songs however each tell a separate story.

I had the chance to check a demo of yours for one of the songs. It reflected the late 80’s BLACK SABBATH and the grandeur of Tony Martin with a little of the DIO era, something in the range of Eternal Idol meets the dirtiness of Headless Cross. Do you agree with that assessment? Do you feel that you guys have what it takes to recreate these exceptional moments from “Sabbath Stones”?

Sounds like we recreated the mood of two of my favorite albums by BLACK SABBATH. It’s definitely all that good stuff in there and I totally agree with you. You should check out the rest of the material where we go even further back in time for a couple more decades.

The “Sabbath Stones” - what a great song that was. Back to your question: only time, the fans and our live shows will tell if what we do is exceptional and if it hits their nerves. I can tell you from my point of view that EXORCISM songs are so much fun to play and were having a blast doing this.

How do you feel about signing with Golden Core Records / ZYX Music? Do you feel that this is the ultimate ground for potential fame of EXORCISM?

Golden Core Records has shown great trust with EXORCISM by signing the band on only a handful of demos. They liked the material so much that they are willing to give us a platform where we can grow on. Now it’s my turn as the producer to deliver the goods in a top-notch fashion. The interest from the individual band member’s fan base plus new ones is tremendous.

The likes on our Facebook page are growing day by day in a way I would have never imagined. We are all hard working people working together, from the individual band member over to management, booking agent and of course the record company. We all pull on the same string and eventually let the leash go for the EXORCISM beast to roam free.

This is something that I really wanted to ask. Within your lineup there is the shredder Joe Stump. I have known Stump to be quite the bone breaking guitar machine when it comes to fast lead guitar playing. I couldn’t quite experience him in RAVEN LORD as he didn’t partake in the recordings. However, it would be interesting to have your insights regarding his fit to slow-paced Doom Metal.

You see that’s exactly what my second question to Joe Stump was when I asked him if he wanted to do the EXORCISM guitars. He explained to me that “bone breaking” and “shredding” is also possible on top of the “blues scale”. And of course it is. He also understands what the song needs in order to stay hypnotic. Let’s remember he is also playing for HOLYHELL, which is a Goth-type Metal band, very similar and pretty much down the same alley as we are.

The good thing is that when I composed these songs back in the day I had many tempo changes. Suddenly during the bridge part and solo I would pick up the tempo to create a more epic type scenario with the music. That’s where the solo guitar comes in and can shine in an upper tempo. Joe, Lucio and Garry are very versatile and adapt easily to what the song needs, as the music is built like a foundation for the vocal melodies and not the other way around.

Csaba, I really hope that this new album of yours will shake cores of Heavy Metal fans and will upgrade the stature of traditional Doom Metal as well. Can’t wait to take a listen. Any last words for the readers?

I’m pretty positive it’ll be another lava metal meltdown for our fans, who will love it.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to be in your webzine (again). With all these great questions I hope it’s more clear for the reader on what we’re about to deliver very soon. Also please check our official website regularly for future shows and tour dates.
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