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Interview With Astrarot

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Last Updated on 06:34 PM by Giorgos Tsekas

One of the most promising bands of Thessaloniki, Greece, the Hardcore Thrashers Astrarot accepted our invitation and answered some questions about… almost everything! Can you take it? Let’s find out…

Hello Nick and welcome to Metal Invader! So what’s the deal these days?

Good evening and thank you for showing interest in us. Everything’s good.  I’m currently making cereal bars and listen to the Heartcore Compilation release.

Could you present to us in a few words who is Astrarot and how the band was created?

The band consists of me (Nick – vocals – guitar), Pantelis (vocals – guitar), George (bass) and Kostas (drums). The band was formed in 2008 having as a goal to conquer the world and visualize Muhammad. After several changes in the lineup, we’ve now found our way and we move with steady steps.

Your name is somewhat peculiar; it reminds me of Astaroth. Does it mean something specific? What made you choose it?

When we were looking for a proper name, our former guitarist (Misha) heard the name of a demon, Astaroth, from a friend and we loved it. When we realized that he had heard the name wrong, we had already bonded with it and decided to keep it, with everyone giving a different interpretation of what it means.

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You’ve been active for quite a long time, so it only makes sense for you to have lived any changes made within the local scene. Would you say that much has changed since you were formed until this day? And if so, did it lead something good?

Almost everything has changed, except for the stupidity, which fortunately has been minimized considerably. It is the first time I have serious people around me, who have a certain purpose and really struggle to achieve it, instead of hiding their incompetence behind stupid ideologies and no longer looking what’s going on around them, ignoring their own mistakes and their own boredom; something that was going on for many years. So, yes, very much has changed and only good has come out of this.

Tell us a few words about “Straight From Nowhere”. When and how did you record it? Who handled the production?

“Straight From Nowhere” was recorded in late 2014 in Florina, in the studio “Behind The Sun”, except for the vocals for two tracks, which were recorded at Valve studios in Thessaloniki. The mastering was done at Made In Hell studio in Athens.

Did you encounter any difficulties while creating the record? If yes, how did you overcome these difficulties?

The main difficulty was that at that time, there was essentially no band, so I didn’t know if the record would be released with the name of Astrarot or with a new band. In technical terms, the only difficulty we encountered was the miscommunication during the mixing process. The first issue was dealt with after many discussions with the former and the new members of the band, while the second was solved after countless talks via the phone and a lot of time.

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Your album cover is quite good and it matches the title of your debut. Tell us a few things about it. Who created it?

The cover is a creation of Nahuel Martinello. The choice was quite easy, because as you said, the cover suits with the dark, industrial and somewhat gloomy, yet aggressive aesthetics of the record, both from the music and the lyrics perspective. Additionally, it perfectly reflects that period of the band, thanks to the edit Straight From The Heart Records and 126 Pixels did.

Regarding the composition of the music and the lyrical themes, where do you draw inspiration from?

Regarding the lyrical piece, we draw inspiration mainly from the adversities of the everyday life, as well as from various topics that catch our interest. Musically, we draw inspiration primarily from new bands and new types of metal music. We’re trying to avoid playing something outdated, while always keeping the aggressive and brutal aesthetics and attitude we had before.

What are the biggest influences on your music?

Our main influences are Soulfly, Biohazard, While She Sleeps, Ministry, Lamb of God, Nailbomb and Bring Me The Horizon, and a thousand more bands that seems impossible to enumerate.

Speaking of influences / favorite bands, did you listen to something that impressed you this last year?

While She Sleeps – Brainwashed, BMTH – That’s The Spirit, Hollywood Undead – Day of the Dead, Lody Kong – Dreams and Visions, Soulfly – Archangel.

As a band you’re a member of the family of Straight From The Heart Records, a label that becomes stronger day by day. How has your cooperation been so far and how you feel about it?

Hitherto, our partnership flows perfectly. We are very happy with it and looking forward to more creative things. Soon, in fact, we have the Heartcore Fest Vol 1, which is the largest Greek festival in modern sound, so we can’t wait to participate in it.

Do you think it is difficult for a local band to achieve its goals and to accomplish something great either nationally or internationally?

It’s a common ground that it’s difficult to succeed in Greece. It’s twice as hard to do it abroad. Everything lies upon each one’s personal choices. However, the most important thing is not to be dispirited when “you get your ass kicked”. The only thing, in which Greece contributes and ultimately holds the bands back, is the Greek mentality. When we’ll stop trying to find ways to settle back and begin trying to make things we love work and come to terms with the idea that sacrifices need to be made, nothing will prevent us from achieving our goals.

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Should we expect new material from Astrarot soon or is it too early to talk about this?

A few days ago our single “Feeding The Flame” was released, which is actually included in the Heartcore Compilation. In fact, we’ve just released a brand new video clip for this track. The reamping – mix – master for this piece was made by Stelios Koslidis, who really did a great job and offered us the best possible result.

Watch the clip here:

Finish this interview anyway you want! What message would you like to send to our readers?

As Peter Steele said at some point, “Do not Mistake Lack of Talent for Genius”. Thank you very much for your time and your interest.

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