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Voltcase (July 2009)
Goth In Asia (2004)
The Mick (2004)
interview taken from Voltcase

VOLTCASE INTERVIEW QUESTIONS - MAX RAEL FROM HISTORY OF GUNS 1. Hi, welcome to Voltcase - how the devil are you?!
Sunburnt and a bit frazzled around the edges after a mad time at Glastonbury. How are you?

2. So, how would you describe your sound to a stranger in just three words (just three words!)?
At the moment i'll go with sexy, electro, punk

3. What could you say to convince the lazy general public that they should check you out, turn up at your gigs and buy your new double-A side single, which is out this month?
We're not for people who get hung up on genre... we write in whatever mood we're in at the time. Sometimes we're completely electronic, sometimes we're a full 5-piece rock band, and any variation in between. We've done songs that are played in Goth clubs, ("Empty Eyes"), Dance clubs, ("LMS"), Punk clubs ("Your Obedient Servants") etc. Our live sets tend towards the higher octane material. Good for drinking and hurling yourself about to. We write songs about serious things and issues... but we also have a sense of humour. The new single is a slow burning electronic track, "When You Don't Matter", coupled with "Slice Up Your Wife" which is a lo-fi electropunk reimagining of the Spice Girls classic which includes the girls themselves and some re-written lyrics which hopefully work initially on a comedic level, but also on a deeper feminist level.

4. What do you guys think of the Internet as a way of promoting yourselves – is it an essential marketing tool, or just another way for people to steal your music?
For a band like us who are quite well known in the underground scenes, the internet is just perfect. We have day jobs, all we're interested in is getting our music to as many people as possible rather than trying to make a living out of it.

5. We try and promote as many local scenes as we can here at Voltcase, what can you tell us about your home town/s and the music scene there?
Any bands that we might not have heard of that you think we should check out?

Music scene in Hertford, which was really ballooning, just suffered a massive blow with the closure of our music venue The Marquee. :( fortunately enough we're close enough to London to be able to get to all the gigs and clubs there.
There's the mrsvee record label run by friends of ours, who have massive of alternative electro things available for free.... website is at:
Also I play with electronic band Xykogen... who also have plenty of free things over at

6. And, for anyone out there just starting out in a band, is there one piece of invaluable advice that you could give them to help them on their way?
Don't get too hung up on 'making it'. It's the easiest thing in the world to become a bitter muso, we've met enough of them. Do it for fun and do it for love, and if ever those things aren't there then it's time to take a beak.

7. So, what’s the most extreme rock-star type story that’s happened to you while on tour or at a gig?
Del our singer is always getting into trouble. One time before a recording session he managed to get cracked over the head with a metal drainpipe! We made him do the session though instead of going to hospital even though he was bleeding everywhere. No way were we going to lose our deposit!

8. If you were interviewing yourself, what question would you ask yourself? And what would the answer be?
I'd say "Max, tell us more about your solo project Raelism..." haha! not really... I'd ask if it's true that we've mapped out our future releases right until the (bitter?) end? The reply would be, "We generally come up with concepts for albums, and the proceed to write in any which way we like, often by improvisation and then fit the songs into album projects as we go along, for this reason there've been songs we've written and even played live ages ago that haven't been released on anything yet. Currently as we stand Album Four will be "Whatever You Don't Turn Up At Twelve", which is electro-gothpunk disco, then Album Five will be "Half Light" which will be totally electronic, then Album Six will be "Eschatology" which will be all 'real' instruments, pianos, guitars, bass etc. If we can get the budget out of the record company hopefully a string section... maybe even a brass section! It's not that we're saying, that's it we're splitting up after that, more that's just what we've got planned at the moment. Who knows if we'll last long enough to actually record and release them. Who knows if by them time we've got to the end we'll have a thousand other ideas to pursue... or who knows if we'll have finally had enough and will just shut up and stop bothering people?! ;)

9. What big plans have you got for the rest of the year?
We're putting the finishing touches to Album Four, the afore-mentioned "Whatever You Do Don't Turn Up At Twelve"... It's predecessor, Album Three, "ACEDIA" was really dark and horrible and depressing scratchy punk, this is a bit of a reaction against it... there's still guitars involved, and there's still a healthy dose of miserabilsm to the lyrics... but the overall vibe of the music is much more up and funky. Our label's sorting out some dates at the end of the year to support the album launch... hopefully including a few dates in Europe.

10. And finally, the question that we ask everyone that appears in Voltcase - what does the word 'Voltcase' mean? (it doesn't actu all mean anything, but we like to see what answers people give - the crazier the better!)
It's a case we carry everywhere with us containing raw energy... we see someone looking tired and filled with apathy at the world around them and we know it's time to OPEN THE VOLTCASE!!!!!

Goth In Asia - History Of Guns interviewed by GERARD BUMANGLAG
interview taken from Goth In Asia

Share with us the history of your band from its conception upto the present.

We originally came together as part of a musical art project put together by someone called Stagger Lee titled, PRE-HATE MACHINE. We were all extremely self-destructive at the time and our lives were all pretty worthless and finally we had something we could believe in. The idea was to be more than a band, to be a philosophy, to be something that would change our own and other peoples lives. After a few months vocalist Del Alien changed the name to HISTORY OF GUNS, and we’d rehearse for hours through the night creating experimental desolate chaotic noise that would have strange effects on the senses. Although the experience changed our lives, there was a lot of fighting and eventually everyone quit the band apart from the two of us, (Del Alien and Max Rael) and seeing as we didn’t really have a band any more to rehearse with we started experimenting with computer based music. This was much more successful compared to our previous noise installations and we started making cds. Some cds are just the two of us, and on other ones we’re joined by other people who wanted to come and play with us. Last year we’ve finally recruited a full band and put on a few shows which culminated in a live gig which was filmed for a DVD release.

What exactly do you mean when you say "History of Guns"? Is it deeper than just being a band name?

We wouldn’t want to give too much away. People say it’s an unusual name, but we like it. One of the first songs we created was called HISTORY OF GUNS and it was written about the Dunblane Massacre, which was a terrible incident here in England back in 1996, where this man Thomas Hamilton went insane with a shotgun and killed almost an entire classroom full of children and their teacher.

How many albums have you released so far and how well were they received by your followers?

We’ve always been outsiders... making our music in our way. Originally we didn’t know what to do with our stuff... we made these tapes and they got passed around to various people through people we met late night drinking round peoples flats. It was all just copied tape to tape, we never charged any money for it. It was part of our philosophy to be not for profit. Art should be free for everyone. We were approached by a guy who wanted to manage us who was convinced he could break us in Germany. But yes gradually our music spread further and further and we’d receive enquiries from people trying to get hold of stuff. When we started making CDs we had to take the painful decision to start charging money to cover the costs. These days we alternate between CDs we sell and CDs we give away.

Where is HoG located and how is the dark music scene over there?

We are based in London, England. Generally the goth/industrial scene seems quite healthy, there’s plenty of goth/industrial clubs around. There’s perhaps quite a substantial part of the scene that is made up of people who are very unwilling to experiment with new music. They like to stick to the older classic goth bands which is fair enough.

What motivated you to write the Flashes of Light album?

We never really sit down and plan what we’re going to do next... it just sort of came out like that. Once we had parts one and two written we thought it might be an idea to follow the music and make the whole album without any distorted guitar. Though some ended up creeping into some songs... we just couldn’t fight it.

Are the songs on the album interconnected?

Yes. But perhaps not in a very conventional way.

"Flashes of Light", parts 1-4 have multiple background music templates, why do you make it so?

It’s just how the songs came out. Sometimes songs seem to want to go into more traditional verse, chorus structures other times sections seem to want to lead on to other sections which want to lead on to other sections and on to other sections! We don’t control the music, it controls us.

When is the best time to listen to your music?

Different cds are good at different times. FLASHES OF LIGHT is something of a journey... and it’s quite long so it’s good to put it on when you can completely submerge yourself in it. Some people have said they like to listen to our music when they’re under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Tell us about what you would normally go through coming up with an album.

We’re always working on new stuff... so at any given point there’s usually around ten or so songs in the process of being worked on. When some of them are nearing completion we’ll decide what to do with them... either send them out individually to appear on compilations, or group them together into an EP or an album. Sometimes when we’re working it’s very obvious to us that certain songs want to go together... like much of the Flashes Of Light material.

How did you end up signing for The Liguid Len Records and what musical genres does it cater to?

Liquid Len became a vehicle for us to release our music. We have complete control over out output, but sadly there’s no money to fund our plans for films and gallery installations. There’s barely enough money to get the cds released. But we fight on... as long as we’re still breathing we’ll always be doing something.

What are your personal views on life in general? Are there other topics you haven't written about that you'd like to touch on someday?

We believe absolutely in personal freedom. There is an infinite amount of topics, and every day we are learning. We could live a thousand years learning every day and still we’d know nothing. There will always be places to explore mentally, spiritually or politically... worlds inside and outside.

What do you guys usually do when you're off-duty?

We tend to drink a lot.

Have you toured outside of Europe? Where do you plan to play next?

Sadly we’ve not yet played outside the UK. We are always open to offers from promoters. We’re currently in talks with promoters to put on a short UK tour later in the year.

Tell us how you got involved with Dark Cell Digital Music correspondents.

It’s a sad truth that so many people in bands think to themselves all they have to do is make music the best they can and record labels and success will come to them. And we maybe had that kind of naivety in our early days, we just made the music and that was all we cared about. People who heard our stuff tended to like it, but we didn’t really have any kind of proper distribution method of getting our music out there to people. Mick Mercer put us on to the Dark Cell guys and they’ve been truly wonderful, our music is now getting out to more people than ever before, you can even buy FLASHES OF LIGHT LP from Amazon UK.

Is there a possibility of playing music differently on the next album, or would you prefer to follow the more traditional route?

Our next album is already recorded. It’s going to be called APOPHENIA. Whereas FLASHES OF LIGHT LP was very much in a dark digital atmospheric vein, APOPHENIA is much more guitar based. There’s some good fast noisy songs on there recorded with our lovely new guitarist FESTER. The song YOUR OBEDIENT SERVANTS on the Whitby Promo is the first song taken from the new album. Because of the time it’s taken to get the funding together to press the album and the speed at which we work, we’ve also recorded a short EP called WIDE AWAKE... it’s different from our other stuff, it’s very fast and very sparse... we might release that next as it seems to be easier to handle EPs than albums.

Who do you think are the artists out there that have a direct influence on your music?

This is a very hard question. Everyone who’s involved with History Of Guns has very different musical taste... and i’d say we’re probably more influenced by the kind of music we listened to growing up rather than music that’s around at the moment. We do like a lot of the current bands, but for something to influence us it has to be something we’ve been listening to for many years which has sunk right into our marrow.

Which genres of music can you tolerate into your system?

Any genre is fair game. We accept that people have to place bands into genres, it’s the way the human brain needs to classify things... but in all truthfulness we express ourselves in whatever sounds come out of us with scant regard for genre. Tho sometimes we’ll have a fight if one of us really wants to use something the others just aren’t into.

The lyrics are brooding and much oppressed by worldly realities, which composition have you developed a certain fondness for?

Yes. Oppression is something that bothers us a lot...

There’s a couple of tracks we’re perhaps no longer in love with on our demo album ENOUGH IS TOO MUCH, but we love the vast majority of our songs the way other people love their families. Whether or not anyone else thinks they’re any good is of course another matter.
How wide is the overall distribution of your products? Have your parcels reached american soil as well?

We have received good reviews from America and Dark Cell Digital Music charge the same price no matter which country in the world you order from. (see ) We are currently in talks regarding a US-based distributor and also a Japanese one.

What about the Whitby October CD, how different is it when compared to Flashes of Light?
It’s very different. It includes songs from our various cds and some new songs and new mixes as well as some songs recorded live in session. Where we can, we like to give cds of our work away... in our dreamworld all art would be free. After the successful sales of FLASHES OF LIGHT LP we had the idea to make 500 cds and give most of them away at the Whitby Goth Weekend, then send some to places like yourselves who had expressed an interest in our work, and post the remaining hundred out free of charge to fans around the world who e-mailed us requesting a copy. Sadly we didn’t have enough to satisfy the demand and of course once we’d said it was limited to 500 copies we weren’t able to make any more!

Mention other bands that you have performed with in the past.

Max Rael also plays part time with experimental black metal band The Meads Of Asphodel signed to the Supernal label. (see )

What are your future plans for HoG?

Our dream is to one day be able to dedicate ourselves entirely to HISTORY OF GUNS. We have many many ideas for projects, but sadly not enough time or money to be able to carry them all out. In the mean time we will carry on doing our thing, always curious to see where it will lead us next.

Your parting words please. Thank you.

Watch the watcher. Thank you for speaking with us.

The Mick - History Of Guns interviewed by Mick Mercer
The Mick available to download from Mick Mercer

MICK: Pre-Guns, Max is band-obsessed even at a school. What type of music was this?

MAX: Ooh i don’t know... it’s always hard to pin things down, i mean it was like the whole growing up thing. So i guess we started we were kind of pop rock, and we’d do cover versions of Queen, The Power Of Love by Hewey Lewis and the News i mean you know really awful old stuff like that.. i was just the keyboard player really i didn’t write anything... i just kind of played what i was told, and then you know as your goolies start to swell up i was drowned by this big wave of darkness... and i started writing all these terrible lyrics and minor chord sequences, and luckily despite some tensions i was allowed to bring these into the band... but it was a strange mix i mean. Angry songs of mutilation and disillusionment then an acoustic guitar love ballad with a f***ing string arrangment! And then as we went on we got darker and darker, like with the covers, by the end we were doing Enjoy The Silence, Love Will Tear Us Apart and that...

MICK: What were Del’s curious interests?

DEL: Well at school music lessons were a joke. So my parents sent me off to guitar lessons, but the idiot only had one guitar and me being left-handed he angrily re-strung it in front of me each week... Come to think of it his attitude probably scarred me for life! So I ended up one of those kids who shut himself away listening to stuff from Numan to the Pistols...
Come to think of it that may have scarred me for life too!

MICK: Max, you have an interest in underground Metal which has seen your working in that genre. I’m not saying a psychiatric restraining order will follow but perhaps you could explain that?

MAX: Um yeah... lots of fingers in lots of pies!! No it was Del used to work with this maniac called Crin who used to run the underground extreme metal zine Godreah and he put together this series of compilation cds featuring underground bands The No Holy Additives Series.... and he asked us for tracks and so we have a track on parts 2, 3 and 4... Del why did we get put on those compilations?

DEL: Oh yes that’s right, pass the buck! No but what we produced was far from metal, but somehow it worked. Over the course of the three cds we’re on, we only ever had one bad review, and we have kept it ‘cos it’s so funny, the man really hated us!

MAX: And it was at one of the compilation launch parties and we got to meet some of the other bands and i think it was the first time we got hammered on vodka and red bull.

DEL: Red Bull was a new invention then

MAX: Yeah and from that we were kind of commissioned to write a track for The Meads Of Asphodel which appeared on their first album, and since then I’ve been involved in various of their projects, including writing and playing a few tracks on their recent second album ‘Exhuming The Grave Of Yeshua’, and there’s some new stuff that’s currently in the works.

MICK: Del, you may have similar perversions. What do you dip and dive into away from the band?

DEL: Vodka, lager and wine.

MICK: You’re an odd band because, technically, you audience might come the whole rock-Industrial crossover points, hardline indie, or adventurous Goths. Does that cause problems, in being seen as a floating force, or do you find it beneficial?

MAX: I don’t think so... people always say oh i’m very broadminded i listen to everything, though truthfully most people who think they’re broadminded actually aren’t... But i think things are definitely getting better, increasingly people are opening up to more different kinds of styles. When i was a kid it was all very polarised you know either Metal or Dance for example but crossover?! Nah forget it! I mean do get people who hear Del’s voice and dismiss us as a goth band, but then people like that can f*** off...

MICK: If you can identify the various sorts of feedback you receive from people, which is your main audience?

DEL: Manic depressives, drunks and drug addicts!

DEL: I don’t think you can label our audience, that’s just not fair on them... they are individuals who happen to like what we do, and we are lucky to have ‘em!

MICK: And of course, those vocals – like Richard Butler from Psy Furs, mixed with Lydon and Harry from Inca Babies. At what point did you realise you were singing this way, it’s hardly something someone plans to construct, surely?

DEL: It wasn’t ever a conscious thing...

MAX: He just opened his mouth and that’s how it came out!

MICK: Who else have you been compared to – which comparison being your favourite?

DEL: People have said Bowie, Dury and stuff we often seem to get compared to bands we’ve never heard of!

MAX: There was a few people who when reviewing Flashes Of Light mentioned Future Sound Of London... so i bought one of their cds off of Ebay and thought it was awful. But then i normally need to listen to things eight million times before i know if i like it or not.

MICK: What can you both agree are the points about HOG which you are most proud of?

MAX: i think we’re proud that we just do what we do, sometimes it’s very hard doing it all alone independently, particularly when it comes to financing and frustrating s**t like that, but at the end of the day, we answer to no one.

DEL: Our drinking ability.

MICK: Let’s follow the timeline, and my comments should be perceived as sentences lobbed out as semi-questions in a conversation, so please decorate the space s in between with perttient illumination


MAX: Ah this was the first thing we put out by ourselves back in 1999 when we first started recording using the computer.

MICK: It’s a nice rompy-stompy EP really, isn’t it? But still the little piano and rampaging samples.

DEL: It’s very different to the early demos.

MAX: Yeah i think because we recorded and mixed it ourselves we were able to open up the sound a lot more. Which meant there was more room for attention to detail, little sounds and samples and drums that we could use to add punctuation to the narrative.

DEL: I think it’s important not to overcrowd the sound.

MAX: He’s always accusing me of that!

MICK: Catchy guitar!

MAX: Yeah that’s hughes the reverend playing on the track Little Miss Suicide, very catchy hook... i hate it, it’s too pop.

DEL: You hate everything that works properly!

MICK: Right from the start there is a more imaginative rhythmic pattination and adventure than is usual in UK Goth circles. Where does this come from, specifically? You don’t just happen to have this once you start. Why are you so fluent with rhythm?

MAX: I don’t know Mick! Honestly, i mean when i was a kid i loved PWEI and early house sound of chicago and that, but when we first started we could just never find a drummer so we used our trusty drum machine, Malcolm. Our first attempts were kind of straight forward dull beats all - boom cha, boom boom cha, But you can’t keep doing that for every song, so we started messing around you know just hiting the pads and seeing what came out... and then we started on the computer and we got one of these cds full of drum loops. And i don’t know but it felt a bit weird using drum beats that’ve been put together by someone else... so we’d cut the loops up, f*** around with them or stick the drum machine over the top or something.

DEL: Though not just for the sake of it... Sometimes a song needs just a straight beat.

MAX: Yeah but if it goes on for too long i’ll get bored and start f****** with it!

MICK: And why the lack of a conventional vocal approach? Why the spoken passages, the samples and effects. Why not just use the voice?

DEL: We always wanted to treat the voice as just another instrument, so we like to play around with vocal effects, delays and stuff... As for the spoken stuff it’s just how it came out at the time, I mean you don’t think in song, you think in voice

MAX: I think in moog...

MICK: What was the reaction to this record at the time?

MAX: Generally pretty good. I mean we suffered in that we were doing it ourselves for the first time and we didn’t exactly have a huge list of who to send promo copies out to or anything.. . but locally, that is we’ve always had quite a good response locally because Del’s such a character! No because we always like have a band pub HQ, and in those days it was The Brittania in Waltham X and we used to rehearse in the room above the pub, and they were good to us in there and people used to come back and listen to us rehearsing and jamming for hours...

DEL: And fighting!

MAX: Yeah well that was you and Stagger... but people liked the CD, i think they were shocked in that it was so different to our live sound which was always dark and messy and heavy and suddenly here we were with all these big loops and sfx and stuff, and big beat was all in fashion then and one review described us as “Fat Boy Slim meets Joy Division” which made us laugh.

Why was the ‘Enough Is Too Much’ album abandoned?

BOTH: It was s**t!

MAX: No i think the main reason was financial...

DEL: Looking back a couple of songs just don’t really work

MAX: Yeah, i mean the track Devastation Remains you know it’s the closing track on the album, which is really important and i think maybe we just didn’t have the resources, it should’ve had real drums and a big f*** off orchestra and s**t

DEL: I think by the time we’d got enough money to do anything with it we’d already finished Disconnect so we thought it best to put money into the latest thing.

MAX: Someone on the sluts mailing list said something a relative used to say which kind of sums us up, ‘Champagne ideas and a beer income’

MICK: Two years between releases, any reason other than financial?

MAX: Yeah well our efforts to get ‘Enough Is Too Much’ out hadn’t gone anywhere then Stagger quit the band and so there were only like two of us left, which meant we couldn’t really go to the rehearsal studios so we kind of went into hibernation for a bit.

DEL: Funnily enough it was Crin coming at us for another track for his compilation series that got us back into the studio and we fired up the studio machine to improvise a new track (‘Reconstructing Terror’) and there were these two tracks we’d started after ‘Enough Is Too Much’...

MAX: Yeah ‘57 Days’ and ‘Burn’

DEL: And we hadn’t listened to them for a few months, but we liked what we heard so we finished them off and wrote Pride, Fact and Disconnect. But again we had it finished but we were completely skint so then it took us a while to find the money for the first pressing.

MICK: Stagger Lee leaves, - but with what effect that you can identify?

DEL: Less fighting!

MAX: At first it was a huge piece of the band that was missing.

DEL: But we soon got over it.

MICK: This finds the vocals accentuated in a rampant Jimmy Pursey (or Keith Allen) gets Tourettes approach. What’s that all about? And the clash of beautiful synths gliding behind such jabbering?

DEL: It’s about what’s going on in my life at that moment... i don’t stand alone someone somewhere must be going through the same s**t. Nothing vocally is planned, that idea seems ridiculous to me. How can you mean it? You become a shallow liar... never underestimate the intelligence of your audience, they will see straight through it.

MICK: There’s a serious artistic feel snagged inside this music, so what would you say was the most poignant moment in the lyrics on this EP?

DEL: For me personally the whole song Disconnect mean as a lot to me. Once again it’s about what was what was going on at the time.

MICK: The way ‘Burn’ slinks by it sounds like you have early rave sensibilities! Is that a coincidence?

DEL: We’ve always been into all kinds of different stuff and with ‘Burn’ we just wanted to go all out for energy

MAX: Yeah we love the high energy guitar things it’s the bastard cousin of ‘History Of Guns’, ‘Compassion Fatigue’ and ‘Your Obedient Servants’

MICK: Most people wouldn’t be too offended if the first track was dubbed triphop.

MAX: that’s a new one on us! but yeah i guess it’s got that kind of vibe, well up until the end. It’s a sci-fi dream and then being wrenched back to reality... The band Onion Jack have asked to do a remix of it, it’ll be interesting to see how it comes out.

MICK: Kevin Gerrish on bass. Is that not a permanent position,

DEL: Good god no!

MICK: it’s just the two of you?

DEL: Trust us if you’d met him, you’d understand!

MAX: Yeah Kev was a funny one. I mean we did recruit him as a full time member, and Mirror Pond was going to be a full length album and everything. I mean it wasn’t like just the two of us like Disconnect and Flashes were, in that we were thinking very much like a three-piece at the time... Hughes the Reverend also makes an appearance, playing lead guitar on Skin Can’t Breathe.

MICK: More conventional singing from Del, then the madness resums – why so?

DEL: Maybe the vodka was kicking in!

MICK: The stompier it gets the moiré addled and snide it becomes.

DEL: The music and the vocals feed off each other.

MICK: It seems by now you’ve achieved an image – you’ll either have an unruly brawl, or there’ll be great beauty.

DEL: Why can’t we combine the two? Mind you it would be like what we have now, we don’t know if we are up or down, mentally that is...

MAX: Um yeah well life’s a f*****g mess, but at times a beautiful one.

MICK: You do realise that with you ability and the way you can make the rhythm so exciting that with a less complicated approach you’d reach more people. You can’t, presumably help yourself. There’s no desire to make it easy?

DEL: What would be the point in that? We would be like every other band. No, if only one person likes what we do then we have done what we set out to do... we make music that we like.

MAX: It would be nice not to be so f*****g skint all the time though.

MICK: Rumbling bass on 5 sounds wonderfully like some Joy Division offspring

DEL: The funny thing is Kev came up with that bass line and normally he was just into his slap bass funk stuff!

MICK: So, okay – lyrics, rubbish or genius?

DEL: That has to remain up to the listener to decide.

MAX: I’m always instantly suspicious of anyone who calls themselves a genius.

DEL: Well i didn’t

MAX: Yeah well good... Mick, don’t start giving him ideas!

MICK: Goose on bass? Revered on guitar? Permanent now?

DEL: Goose has quit, Reverend’s now the drummer!! And we’ve finally found our guitarist, Fester.

MAX: I don’t know why we have such a hard time with band members...

DEL: Something to do with our personalities!

MICK: What was all the mythical bits about?

DEL: Mythical bits?

MAX: Well there’s all that bible wanked-on stuff

DEL: I had been waiting for years to talk Max into Flashes... i wanted it to drag you down and pull you in. I don’t like listening to myself rant on but this, well... it’s a lot of the darkness inside coming out of my mouth. Life can be very mythical. You are the only person to spot this Mick; but way back when, i was into white magic and depression (just for a change) but it stayed with me and now it’s on the CD. Max knows somehow how to catch those moods, that’s how we work.

MICK: How long do these recordings take. There is so much to them.

DEL: Always longer than it should do!

MAX: It’s well not my fault! When we work we actually work surprisingly quickly, everyone improvises their parts in one or two takes and then i’ll cut stuff away and add the little rhythmic things and sound effects and stuff... it’s just a bastard trying to find the time when we’ve both got bloody day jobs to do...

DEL: And we have to spend a lot of time in the pub.

MAX: yeah, some more than others.

DEL: Actually it’s something we’ve been planning if we can ever find the time and people who could take the pace is naffing off to a remote farm house in Wales or somewhere with a load of equipment,

MAX: bottles of vodka,

DEL: yeah, and recording gear, and spend a couple of weeks writing and recording a whole album

MAX: we’d easily do it, as we’ve said most of our stuff comes from improvisation

DEL: we’d take bets on who’d have a breakdown first

MAX: it would make great telly...

MICK: Is there a story running through it, because I felt like I was passing through a film?

DEL: Yes and no, in that everything we do is related to everything else that we do.

MAX: Yeah there are a lot of cross references, and patterns in our stuff.

MICK: Is it designed with a purpose? Did you set out, beforehand, just how it must be accomplished rather than concentrating on individual tracks?

MAX: Well not really... i think when we started we just had the tracks Flashes Of Light Parts One and Two... and i thought it’d be an idea to have an entire album, with four tracks on it, each one being fifteen minutes long... but the tracks didn’t want to be any longer, they just came out very naturally at that length.

DEL: Flashes seemed to grow on it’s own and morph. There’s only one song on the album that I don’t like but Max likes it and others are split on this song. I didn’t want it on because i was afraid the listener would lose interest, but it seems i’m wrong.

MAX: History will prove me right on Flashes part 3!! If i’d have my way it would have been even longer!!

DEL: Oh, can you imgagine it.

MAX: But yeah symmetry’s quite important... with flashes you have the two long songs, four short songs, two long songs... but you can’t ever force it, it just has to happen like that.

DEL: Well you can help it along the way!

MICK: What mood are you usually in when you feel a need to put the album on?

DEL: Pit of depression! Actually we hate each other’s taste in music so whenever we’re getting pissed round one of our places we can only listen to the guns.

MAX: Much to the annoyance of our friends!

DEL: No they love it really... actually a friend of ours is seeing a shrink - O.K. fine, but the scary thing is, this person is now quoting lyrics from every back EP, LP and dodgy tape!! I just hope they understand what its about and can kick back at the world rather than misconstrue and spiral deeper in to hell.

MICK: When do people say they play your stuff most, what state are they usually in – excited and craving noise, or down and wanting to be dragged up, kicking and screaming?
DEL: When they're down and wanting to go down deeper!

MAX: i think there's a big escapist element to our music in that it'll take you away to a world that's not necessarily a particularly nice world... but it's a different one nevertheless. And sometimes when you're down anywhere is better than where you are now.

MICK: In the old days which I remember, you'd have been selling thousands. Now it must be hard. How much more would you be doing, in ways you can indicate, than you can now?

MAX: That's a funny question... i mean yeah it's hard and sometimes we get f****d off with the whole thing, but well you can’t really think about how life would be different if this and but that ... my gran used to say, 'Life's to shorts for "If's".

DEL: Yeah and that's the thing, in that originally we always just made music for ourselves.

MAX: It sounds like a cliche, but seriously for the first few years of our existence we'd just jam, and record it all on tape, and play occasionally make a racket in local pubs that would have us and stuff, but we#d never send off demos to record companies, or try and send our music out. It was just for us...

MICK: What was it like live?

DEL: Bloody excellent! We were amazed by the reaction we got.

MAX: Yeah i mean it'd been a few years since we last played.

MICK: Were you pathetic, wretched nervous wrecks beforehand, or afterwards?

DEL: There were a few nerves floating around beforehand... but then Fester pissing in the sink backstage broke the tension!

MAX: Afterwards we were flying

DEL: People kept buying us drinks!

MAX: It was all filmed by independant film company Goat Films and should hopefully be out on DVD at the end of the year....

MICK: You could well be the most rhythmically assured band working in Goth or Industrial – or do you know better?

MAX: I don't know I don’t really compare us to what's around. i mean there's bands i like rhythmically um say like Chaos Engine for example

Now you have Fester apparently bringing 'brutal guitar.' So why have you been looking for such a style?

DEL: It's all about energy... We could never actually keep a guitarist, so we'd almost given up when we met this fat bastard. We were looking for a lineup that would work live, we wanted a high energy assault.

MAX: If i was a better player i'd be the guitarist and we'd get a new keyboard player
DEL: F*** off would we

DEL: You stick to what your good at!

MAX: Well it’s been hard to find a guitarist, in that on the recordings so far it’s mostly me doing it, or if we need something technically better then hughes will do it, which meant it was impossible for us to play live for a few years. I mean we’d try guitarists out but they never seemed to get what we were about, they were showing us how good a player they were with solos and time signatures, but you know we’ve never been about that, on record we might be about creating atmospheres and stuff, but live it’s just completely about energy... and like take the song TOMB, you’d say to a guitarist ok the chords just go Eminor, Aminor, then occasionally we give each other the nod and go to Bminor, and they’d be like ‘huh? where’s the verse bridge chorus’ and all that and we’d be like f*** all that, thems the chords feel free to f*** around as much as you want!

DEL: It’s no wonder we get through so many members!

MAX: But yeah Fester gets it... i mean he’s joined at a strange time in that we were half way through recording the new album Apophenia, so he’s on half the tracks... and he’s so full of ideas we’re writing tonnes as well, i think a couple of the new songs will be on Apophenia, the rest will have to be for whatever comes after that

DEL: Have you ever seen a dog chasing it’s tail?