abscession

After I had heard one song off of Abscession’s demo I knew I had to get my hands on it, and so I ordered me a copy of the limited tape. And I was absolutely blown away by it, thinking it to be one of the strongest death metal demos I’ve heard. Of course I had no other choice but to review the demo and interview the band, ’cause I’m sure they’ll become a force to be reckoned with.
We conducted the interview by e-mail. I sent the first bunch of questions on June 22nd and I received the final bunch of answers on July 9th.

Hello there fellows. Let’s begin with an easy one; why don’t you just introduce the band to the readers, and also let us know who’ll be taking care of the answering.
Thomas: Hey there, we’re Abscession, a swedish old school DM band in the vein of Edge of Sanity, Carcass, Entombed… and so on! We’re currently five members, Thomas on growls and bass, Mike on growls and grunts, Markus on guitars and screams, Niel on lead guitar and Macke on drums. Thomas and Markus will be answering these questions!

Earlier this year you released your debut demo, Death Incarnate, and from what I’ve read the response has been nothing but great. Did you anticipate such good feedback? Do you feel the material deserves its high praise?
Thomas: Hell yeah, the feedback has been crazy! We figured we’d record some good old DM, inspired by the success of newer bands such as Bloodbath. I think when we started out it was mostly a fun thing to do, but once Markus had made some riffs we started to realize that this shit was gonna be really good. Markus is an awesome riff-writer, as you will hear on Death Incarnate. But I don’t think we expected this amazing response. Although we are grateful for all the people who enjoy the hard work we put into our debut release!

The demo was released in quite limited copies, with only 166 printed, and on tape as well. That’s pretty unusual today, but utterly old school. How come you decided to release it in such limited quantities, and why the particular format? And how did you get in touch with Suffer Prod, as a new band with its first release and convince the label to release its first tape ever?
Thomas: I think Markus can answer this better than me, but when we heard that Suffer wanted to do a cassette release it was just too old school to pass up!
Markus: When the songs were finished I was pretty proud of them and took them with me when I visited Marc from Suffer. He’s a total oldschool freak and was blown away by the songs. He said it must be released in some way, and then he had the idea to make a tape again, like in the early 90s. First we were a bit skeptical, cause almost nobody has a tape player anymore. But then we thought we could put a note in the tape that people that buy it can get a link for a free mp3 download aswell, so nobody can complain. We all were a bit nervous, but as the tapes began to sell and the word was spread we knew it was the right decision.

Are there any plans on re-releasing the demo on other formats? In my mind it’d be perfect for a 7”.
Thomas: Well, you never know! I agree though, a 7″ would be fucken awesome. I love vinyls and it would be sweet to have our music on that format.

When can we expect to hear a follow-up, are you working on any new material?
Thomas: We’re currently working on new material for a full length album. There’s no date set for a release though, so we’re just writing it up as we go along.

Have you thought about sticking with Suffer Prod for the upcoming album, or will you search for a ‘bigger’ label?
Thomas: The guys at Suffer have been really cool to us, so if they wanna release our next full length album we’ll definitely think about it. We’ve had some offers from other underground labels but Suffer is still a more interesting choice.
Markus: The guys from Suffer offered us to release the follow up if we don’t find a bigger label. When the CD is ready we will go label shopping and see who will be clever enough to release it.

You’ve changed drummers since the demo recording, unless I’ve been misinformed. Have that brought on any changes in your sound?
Thomas: Yeah, this is a half-truth. The new drummer, Macke, is very technical and awesome, but it’s not 100% confirmed that he will play with us yet. He did drums for another band I growl for, [Zombie Destrüktion] and we’ve been close friends for almost ten years so I don’t think it will be a problem to convince him though.

There are a lot of new acts here in Sweden that goes for that old school death metal approach, but to me there’s a sense of melody that differs you from the rest. So, from where do you draw inspiration, I assume Bloodbath…?
Thomas: Haha yeah BB are influential in their own way, but I think we (the band members) all coming from pretty different musical backgrounds and just add our own ingredients to the stew, so to speak. Though once again, I have to credit Markus for pulling the heavy-weight of writing most of the music, and doing mixing and mastering on his own. Crazy!
Markus: Allthough our influences might be different I think there are some bands that every band member likes, like Edge of Sanity and other stuff Dan Swanö did. I don’t know much new Death Metal, I prefer to listen to the good and trusted albums I listened to in the 90s for inspiration. f.e Carcass – Necroticism or Death – Human.

Since a couple of you are also involved in another death metal band called Zombie Destrüktion, is Abscession to be considered more of a side-project? Or is it a whole-hearted thing?
Thomas: Yeah, ZD is my other band but it’s been on ice for a while. Abscession is definitely whole-hearted, I love this old-school stuff. Though we’ve recently started playing with ZD again, but I guess ZD is now the side-project for me, since it’s been a bit up and down over the years. Love the ZD crew though, they’re the greatest guys to play with!

Have you played live yet, or is Abscession a studio band so far?
Thomas: No live gigs yet, but we’re talking about it from time to time. We’re all pretty pressed for time, but once we have more material we might do a tour or a few select gigs. So keep your eyes open!

Well, a tour to promote your album (once it’s released, that is) isn’t such a bad idea. I guess the Suffer Prod boys could be pretty helpful with contacts, considering their affiliation with an almost legendary deathgrind act… And speaking of which, a split with Depression hasn’t come up during your talks?
Markus: We haven’t considered doing a split-CD with Depression, allthough its a good idea and it might be fun doing a split-vinyl one day.

To be perfectly honest I’m not sure I have many questions left to ask. So as the interview draws to an end I have to ask; what can we expect from Abscession in the future? What are your hopes and thoughts?
Thomas: Well, you can expect more brutal old school death, but you can also look forward to a few surprises! I don’t want to say too much here, but we’ve got a really interesting concept in the pipeline.

And as that was it for the serious questions, let’s move on to the standard ones.
Latest record you’ve bought?

Thomas: Rainbow Rising on vinyl. RIP Ronnie James Dio!
Markus: Whitesnake – Slip of the tongue

Latest record you’ve listened to?
Thomas: Iron Maiden – A Matter of Life and Death.
Markus: Masterplan – Time to be king

Latest book you’ve read?
Thomas: White Gold Wielder by Stephen Donaldson
Markus: I guess some operation manual

Latest show you’ve went to?
Thomas: Metaltown 2010 in Gothenburg. Between beers I managed to see Nile, Raubtier, Rammstein, Kyuss, Katatonia and probably some more stuff that I can’t remember (probably due to the beers…). Good shit though.
Markus: Transatlantic in Cologne May 2010

Crappiest record you’ve bought?
Thomas: I’m not sure actually, probably some crap I listened to as a kid.
Markus: I once ordered a “surprise” CD package off of Nuclear Blast, which contained the most crappy speed and thrash metal acts you can ever imagine! Can’t remember band names though, luckily for the bands

That’s it. I really hope I’ll see you live around these parts one day. Best of luck with the future endeavors and thanks for your time! Any last words?
Thomas: Thanks to those who managed to read all the way down here! Have a beer and listen to Death Incarnate as a reward!
Markus: We’re truely honoured in your interest in making an interview with us, and hope the readers will give us a listen, so they can see how cool old school death can still be in the year 2010.
Cheers!