The interview with Head Cleaner is a delight, as delightful is always talking to the band members. We asked from Kostas (guitars) to share some information with us about the band’s upcoming split, his influences, the scene nowadays and other interesting stuff… So here it is…
Good evening, Kostas. How did your contact with Progress Of Inhumanity take place and when did you decide to release something together? Give us some info about the split release. We are friends with Progress Of Inhumanity for quite a few years now, since we shared the same live stage in Thessaloniki and got to know each other. They are one of the few grind bands in Greece, so they have our respect. In general, when they came for shows in Thessaloniki we went to see them, so did they when we went to play in Athens. Especially me and Costas kept closely in touch using internet and discussed about music, shared views about albums, guitars, amplifiers etc, so when Screaming Victims made us the proposition to find a band so that we release a split LP, Progress Of Inhumanity were among our first choices.
Should we expect something similar in the future? You’ve released splits before. With which band would like to do that, really? Every band originated in the underground scene has many splits in their discography. It is a part of the scene’s culture and we all cherish this “brotherhood” between the bands, so I could not exclude any similar releases in the future as well. I would be interested in working with many bands, I really can’t mention just one. It is true that in the past we contacted lots of bands from abroad that we are fond of and the feedback was very positive. However problems always came up, like non matching dates, full length albums that had just been released or were about to be released, programmed tours that left no time for the band to record etc. As an example I can mention the Americans Cloud Rat and Resistance Culture as well as the Canadians Fuck The Facts. Other well-known bands from the scene were willing to work with us but there were legal setbacks by their labels. Finally I realized that the whole “split” thing wasn’t as easy as I thought. Patience is required in order for something great to come along.
Is it about time for a new record? When should we expect it? No, it isn’t time yet. Just last year we released our third full length while in two months the split with Progress Of Inhumanity will be released, containing 7 new songs. You should keep in mind that this release is like half a full length for us, so I reckon that if everything goes according to plan we’ll have a new LP in 2016. That is the timeline according to the facts so far.
We can see you in many project bands lately while at the same time you spend much time for your label Clean Head Productions. How can you manage all this together? The truth is that the projects do not take much of my time. Doomed Again are clearly a studio band, so are Haven’t Said Enough. I like working with friends and playing music with them. In Haven’t said Enough for example I play with my buddies, Stelios from Erectus and Mitch.
What do you think of the Greek Metal Scene and especially the grind scene? Greece’s metal scene has peaked at the last 5 years. I like many Greek bands and I always watch their progress. I specifically like the mutual support between the bands. This proves the maturity of the scene, something that was unknown in the past. Grind is not very common in Greece. However, the few existing bands of the genre are extraordinary. Besides Progress of Inhumanity which we already have mentioned, you can find Slavebreed, Delete the Mass, GrassRoll, Stheno, Dephosphorus and a while back we had Into the Gore, Crud, 666Casualties and Kvazar which have made epic albums and music. I like the Greek scene, I am a fan.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Greek metal scene? I really can’t find any advantage in playing metal or punk, anything besides Greek folk mainstream music here. Metal music is a pariah in the Greek culture system, it never will be very popular. The problems are countless. The most important is Greece’s geographical position, which isolates the bands from the rest of Europe. It really is a huge task for the bands to tour or record outside Greece. Also, there are only a few sound engineers who know the first thing about metal and have the background and the technical abilities to properly record metal music. There are even less proper studios for recording metal music and that is the reason for having so many homemade productions. Even the stores that sell equipment, musical instruments and amplifiers lack of variety. In Germany, for instance, music stores are resided in buildings that expand in thousands of square meters and one can test anything and find everything.
What did you hear lately that impressed you? Lately I persistently listen to “Bushcraft” by Baptists, “Once more around the sun” by Mastodon, which I think is album of the year and “Eros-Anteros” by Oathbreaker. I’m not sure, but I think they must have forgotten an “h” between “t” and “e”, they probably wanted to write “antheros”(blooming). We already have the example with the mainstream Greek metal band that fucked-up the ancient Greek letters on the print of their t-shirt. These things are hilarious.
Name your personal and the band’s influences. My influences cannot be defined. I lately listen to everything that sounds interesting. Traditionally speaking, I’d say bands like Napalm Death, Brutal Truth, Terrorizer, Suffocation and Carcass. At least at my musical beginning these were my standard listenings. The rest of the band members also listen to various stuff, Billy and Leyteris are classic heavy metallers – for instance they dig in Iron Maiden, Manowar and Running Wild- I only know these bands by name. Mitch on the other hand listens to Industrial music a lot, Ministry, Lard, stuff like that.
If you could choose one, which would be your all-time favorite album and who your favorite musician? Napalm Death – Fear, Emptiness, Despair. There a story behind that. It was 1995 when I skipped school and went downtown at a record store to buy the album. All out of nowhere I grew 40° C fever and I headed back home. I can’t remember me getting back, however when I entered my house I put the record on and went under a blanket dripping with sweat. I think that due to the high fever some uncanny brain portals opened and permitted the album notes to enter straightly to the deep unconscious of the mind. Ever since that day I am extremely mentally bound to that record. Regarding my favorite musician right now, I’d say Kurt Ballou of Converge.
The closing is yours. Thanks for the interest in Head Cleaner and I wish to you good luck with the Metal Invader project! επικοινωνία: https://www.facebook.com/headcleanerband