Thursday, November 24, 2011

an interview with Martin Missy from the swedish epic doom rockers OBRERO

Coming from Sweden and formed around Martin Missy (also former and actual singer in the returning PROTECTOR), OBRERO has recently released what I consider as one of the very best DOOM albums of the year "Mortui Vivos Docent" on night Tripper Records (from Sweden too)...
Despite maybe deceiving apparences, this band doesn't come from nowhere and for sure won't remain a project without tomorrow; basically OBRERO's style is some kind of fresh and original retro 70's heavy rockin' doom but definitely not the way we're used to now for about two years (with the likes of Graveyard, Orchid, etc...) and as I precised "basically", I would add : "not only..." !
 It's maybe a bit hard to imagine but this could be an hybrid son of CANDLEMASS, TROUBLE, THE OBSESSED, early PENTAGRAM and CATHEDRAL, brought forth in a decadent evening dedicated to the hallucinated 70's and to the heaviest and most epic Metal of the early-mid 80's !!!
Sweden's heavy rockers/doomsters are often very tight and inspired musicians and there's absolutely no exception here, the guys are all extremly experienced, inspired and make obviously proof of a communicative enthusiasm, which will satisfy as much the fan of twisted mid-tempos and groovy parts, as the fan of heavy and epic moods... Finally I'd like to insist on Marty's vocals which are really exceptionnal and impressive in terms of harmony, power and charisma; just listen the Youtube video below with the song "the wolve's hook" and you won't fine any single little argument that can contradict this appreciation !
Oh sure this band isn't really wellknown for the moment, but I'm sure they'll become big in no time, so believe me they deserve your support right now...
Well, now let the mighty Martin speaks about the album,  the ambitions of OBRERO and its future :

The band formed in 2007 but just recorded the debut album in spring 2011, how did it come that it took 4 years to release an album with such experimented guys like you ?
At first we never thought about a record deal. The band was kind of a a rehearsal-room-project in the beginning. It was first when we had written and recorded a bunch of songs that we looked a little bit further.

What about the release “volume 1 : tales from the old west and beyond”, was that your demo ? Encyclopedia metallium says it came out in September, after the album really ? or maybe it’s released in a special edition (CD or vynil) ? This includes 12 songs of which none is on the album, how can you explain that ?
Yes, "Volume 1..." is our demo (released on CD) and contains the songs I mentioned in my first answer. Somehow it never got released though. And when we released "Mortui Vivos Docent" we thought it could be kind of cool when we release our demo after our debut-LP. I don't know if any band has done that before...? Probably, but nothing that I have heard of.

Your singing in Obrero is very different from what you previously did with other bands, did you have to work some particular aspects vocally wise ?
It took a lot of practicing to get the voice to sound like it does on "Mortui...". If you listen to the demo "Volume 1...", you can hear the difference. My voice was not as good / trained back then.

The lyrics deal with fantasy stories in environnments of hate, battles… Where do you find inspiration for that ? How do you manage to write such harmonious lyrics with this awesome epic touch like on “the wolf’s hook” and “svantovit” ? do you write them after the song’s composition is finished ?
I get inspiration from books, tv, cinema and real life. I usually write down an idea when I get it, and save it for when its time to write lyrics for a new song. The music always is wirtten first. After that I sit down, write the lyrics and then develop the vocal harmonies.

Any particular reason about the fact that the lyrics are not on the same order as the songs in the CD booklet ?
Hahaha, that was a mistake by the company that printed the booklet. We had sent them everything in the correct order.

Sweden has maybe the most productive scene in Europe concerning stoner and heavy rock, while the doom scene isn’t as active, especially considering that Candlemass will soon end, where do you situate OBRERO and do you think you could have an interesting place to take ?
Very difficult to say. We just focus on one day at a time. At the moment we're writing new songs. Then we will record them. After that it's time for the booklet / layout. And so on. We don't think that we ever could get as big as Candlemass, but if it should happen, it would of course be cool.

In your opinion, which song of the album represent the best the sound of OBRERO ? “svantovit” has everything representative I think : very catchy heavy rockin’ doom but also extremely heavy and epic with almost heavy/thrash riffs in the 2nd part (nice amazing 80’s touches), all that with a massive production…

That's very difficult to say as well. I think my favourite song is "Charles the Hammer", but I'm not sure if it has everything in it that represents Obrero. You may be right that "Svantovit" might have all the aspects of Obreros music in it.

What about your deal with Night Tripper ? Here’s your chance to give all details to guys who’d like to buy your album, especially tell us about the vynil version please… Are you in contact with both other bands from the label ? Is it just a one-album deal ?
We will release at least one more album on Night Tripper Records. We got in touch on Myspace actually. Cronis from Night Tripper Records liked us a lot and signed us right away. We are very happy that Cronis also decided to release "Mortui Vivos Docent" on vinyl. There still are a lot of fans that like to buy LPs in that format. We have no contact to the other bands from the label (yet).

What about gigs ? was the release-gig really your 1st one ? Any plans yet settled for 2012, maybe some summer festivals?
Yes, the release gig in Stockholm on the 23rd of September this year was our first gig. We haven't recieved a lot of offers for gigs yet. When we get them, we'll take a look and see what's possible (we all have jobs and other bands to regard and some of us also have families).

What about the comeback of PROTECTOR ? Was it a natural collective decision or was it maybe also the result of many fans requests ? After your departure from the band in the late 80’s, PROTECTOR turned out more into death metal stuff, what can we expect exactly for your next album ? Do you have yet contacts with any label for a 2012 release ?
We had been playing live with the Protector-coverband The Protectors for 5 years, when we decided to write new material and reactivate Protector again. Before that I asked Hansi Müller, who founded the band back in 1986, if it was ok with him. The new songs will be Thrash Metal, with a little touch of Death Metal here and there. We are in contact with some record companies for the release of a full-lengh LP next year, but nothing i decided yet.

It leads me to ask you the exact nature of OBRERO for you guys, as all of you are invested in various other bands, is it just a side-project ? Does it imply a lot of organization to satisfy all camps ?
Obrero started out as a side-project, but now it has become the band nr. 1 for all of us. Well, I have two nr. 1 bands now. :-)
The other bands (again with the exception of Protector) are not that active, so we have a lot of time for Obrero.

After all those years, do you still feel German, or definitely Swedish or just European ?
My mother is from Sweden and my father is from Germany, so I've always felt half-swedish / half-german. But I also feel European.!/Oberoswe

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