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Tony "Demolition Man" Dolan (Venom Inc.)

Interview with Tony Dolan from Venom Inc.
by Harel Golstein at 29 August 2017, 12:00 PM

When VENOM INC.’s first single “Dein Fleisch” came out this June, about 2 months prior to the release of the band’s first album under the VENOM INC. name (last one they made together was for M-PIRE OF EVIL), It caught me completely off guard and I was surprised with how good I thought it is. Not that I don’t like their old material or that I somehow thought it’s impossible for these guys to impress me; not at all. I just thought it was THAT good. The song is blasting with rhythm and attitude, praised vocalist Tony “DEMOLITION-MAN” Dolan sounds excellent, and even the video made its way into my play-and-then-play-again playlist for at least a couple of weeks. Second single to come out was “Ave Satanas”, partly carrying the album title, and it had me thinking it’s just as promising and pounding as “Dein Fleisch”, ultimately leaving me with a strong feeling this new album is going to be a blast.

-Harel Golstein

How did the idea come to make an album under VENOM INC?

At first everyone wanted the demos so we were told  we should target a label. I said I don’t want to go into targeting labels, I wanted somewhere we could really feel at home, a home that’ll be supporting what we do”. He continues saying “Jeff kept telling me to send stuff and we were exchanging material. I loved everything and it sounded great. It all seemed to be going well and we’ve sent these to Abbadon in Newcacstle. Eventually I flew to Portugal, we’ve kind of put it all together, finishing lyrics etc. This album for us is kind of a salute to the fans. To every driver who ever took us to the airport, every fan who’ve bought an album or a concert ticket, everyone who was involved and supported us over the years. So it’s a huge Thank you.

In the late 90’s after finishing the last album, pop and grunge were everywhere, everything was happening. We didn’t want to finish with smashing our guitars or anything, we’ve just felt that was that. I didn’t want to flung a dead horse for financial reasons. Me and Mantas have been working together for more than 20 years. So it felt normal. The original members had a chemistry that worked, and us three had that chemistry too. So we wanted to do this for the fans mainly. Well the band wanted to focus on new material but It’s also an opportunity for a new generation to listen to these tracks. And it was important for us to go back to the beginning, to reach those fans.

Were you afraid some fans would be disappointed with the new material?

Well I wanted to challenge the people. These days nobody has the patience to explore things, so the new generation is actually the one looking for the good material. They (Nuclear Blast, H.G) didn’t apply any pressure on us, but we felt it because they put so much money on us. So you do feel the pressure to put in a result. But the reason we’ve been successful these past three or four years is because everyone is so passionate about it. When we’re doing an album not trying to plagiarize or copy ourselves. All we have to bee is be who we are. If people like it they’ll like it, if not then not. But Nuclear Blast is amazing. The support and passion is incredible. For us it’s brilliant.

They brought in the same artist they were working with on the M-PIRE OF EVIL album “Hell To The Holy” He already had this image… A kind of character looking like hell, humanity, money, and we wanted all those things. Disgusting human traits. He was in. I had this idea for an image where we disrobed him and you saw who was underneath, and It was Lucifer at an end of the world scenario, passively playing his flute.

I know you love BACH, can you tell me why the flute was so important?

It was just sitting there. We get on doing the album, one of our contacts was that painter, with Lucifer happily walking towards you playing his flute. We’re at a point we have a choice, leaving the earth barren or give it to the next generation. But it’s our choice, and knowledge is everything. That was kind of his mission. So I just went back to that piece of art. We didn’t try to manipulate anything, it was all there. It FELT like the album.

What about the riffs, the lyrics, how do you write? In what sort of setting?

Me and Mantas are working differently. He always works with me, putting the riffs down, putting the structure together. Once he has that he puts the lyrics over that. Very diligent. I’ve always been more spontaneous. I don’t like structure, I see music in images. So whenever I hear music I see images, and it could be anything. The images have a soundtrack for me. So in the old days I was going to the studio and the engineer would be like “Where are the lyrics?”, and I’d say well we’ll see. We’ll see what comes to me. The music is telling me THAT story. When me and mantas work like that, it happens like that. So we just work our ways through the music. We let the music dictate how it’s being said and where, so it has that spontaneous feeling. When we work together it’s the same thing for Mantis. It’s a bit more organic, we don’t have a preconception, we let it flow and see what happens.

VENOM INC. will be starting a North American tour this September. Please tell me a bit about that.

We knew we wanted to do a tour to support the album, and we’ve got a couple of festivals coming up. So in September we’ll be starting our fourth north American run. The fans over there have been so brilliant the first shows we did after coming back, even when we were there with “M-Pire” (Of evil, H.G), so it ws important for us going back there. We’ll be touring with THE TOXIC HOLOCAUST BOYS, which I knew from before, THE CONVALESCENCE, which I’ve heard about, and GOATWHORE that wanted to come along, and I thought great, I love them.

So you are excited to your, it sounds like.

That’s kind of what happens, you know. Many fans that have been influenced or just want to be part of that. The management, the booking agent. You’re a little pensive, you want to get going with it and take it to the next level. Because the album coming out is one thing”.

So what are the future plans for VENOM INC? Should your fans expect this to last? It seems like your fan base is growing very rapidly and all over the place.

Well from the beginning to now we didn’t plan this. Someone even offered us a lot of money to do tours for a live album. But it is growing, we’ve got Australia, New-Zealand. The dates just keep adding and adding. So all we think about is playing shows, we’re not planning doing what until when. It’s Kind of like going on vacation. You’ve got the hotel, the care, we’ve got plane tickets to Hawaii. But beyond that there is no definitive plan. If we sat to plan a route it’s quite possible that we may fuck up somewhere and end quicker then we realized. By doing it this way we’re just having fun. Making it for all the new fans. It’s such a bringer of life, light and energy.

VENOM INC’s New album “Ave Satanas” is coming out August 11th, and if you’re in North America you can see them live starting 1st of September in Philadelphia, PA.


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