NEURONIA (for Metal Scrap Records)

 Interview was prepared by ALIAS
Answered Maciek “Tektur” Nawrot (NEURONIA - vocals)

1.Hi! Recently the band released a new EP called "Insanity Relapse". Can you tell, what will be waiting the listeners on this EP for those who still have not heard this release?
Maciek “Tektur” Nawrot (vocals): Hell-o! Well, the new EP is the most melodic thing we have recorded in ages, but also – in my opinion – harder and better player than on the last album. There’s melodic death metal, heavy metal solos and a little bit of blast beats here and there, but also some mid-tempo riffs that are really interesting. I think that it’s a diverse piece of music and we have drawn from many inspirations. And I’ve tried to make the lyrics interesting, telling not only about the problems of the world today, but also our own ones.

2.EP format is not very popular today. So, why did you decide to record this EP? Can we consider this EP a prelude to your next full-length release, or this EP - it is an independent creative unit?
Not so much as a prelude, but definitely a hint about the direction in which we are heading as a band. I guess that the next album will sound similarly, but of course we will try new things on the next release, as we always do. We want to record and release our third album next year, which will also mark the tenth anniversary of the band. That said, this EP is a closed and independent creative unit and we don’t want to replicate any of the tracks from it on the forthcoming album.

3.What means the name of the second track - 3:33 03:33??
Well, it HAS a name – 3:33 is an hour. Sometimes we wake up in the night, tortured by insomnia. My friend from my hometown of Lublin used to wake up at strange hours in the night – 2:22, 3:33, 4:44… This hour came to me as a symbol of insomnia, which can have very strange and ill effects on the mind of the person affected by it. The title was first – then we’ve decided to cut the track down to 3 minutes and 33 seconds, just as a joke!

4.How do you plan to promote your music? What goals do you want to reach?
We do a lot of promotion by ourselves, but a lot of people help us – Robert from Psycho Records, Joel from Infektion Records (Portugal), and of course Natalya and Anatoliy from Metal Scrap Records, whom you surely know. We released this new EP on the Internet, just to get a lot of feedback and see if people catch on to our new sound. We also use social media quite a lot – not only Facebook, but also Twitter, Last.fm, ReverbNation and any other thing we can get our hands on. Internet is a very important medium for promotion right now and you have to keep up with what’s going on on the web.

5.As for our goals – fame, fortune and stardom! :) No, just joking, but we do want to be internationally recognized and show our music on gigs abroad. Of course, we would like to get a professional contract with a big label and tour extensively, but there is still a lot of work to be done to achieve that.
There are many musical styles mixed in your music. Some listeners may get the impression that you just cannot decide what and how you want play. What can you say to that?

Plain and simple – if you want to experience our music to the fullest, keep an open mind. We don’t want to limit our creativity in any way. That’s how you create interesting music these days – trying to merge different styles and influences. Of course, there will be always plenty of room for bands who play a certain “old-school” style and do it great, but we don’t want to be known as a band copies one style. Mixing genres is great and it gives the scene a breath of fresh air.

6.This stylistic diversity is fraught with excesses in one side or another. There should be a sense of proportion. When comes a sense of proportion and understanding that this is where something good and fit and something does not fit?
Hmm… I guess when we do the arrangements. Sometimes we stop playing and start thinking: “no, this part is too long, it will be boring”, “this solo is too outrageous for this track”, “the vocal line here doesn’t fit, you’ve got to sing it another way” and so on. At the same time, sometimes we see that the track is a one-way song and we try to diversify it by adding on other tunes.

7.When you write music, do you plan in advance how the song would sound? Or the writing process is spontaneous?
No, it’s totally spontaneous, we combine some riffs and every member of the band takes part in the process. First, we combine the riffs with drum rhythms, and then we overlay the solos and vocal parts… It’s like we say: “OK, this riff is good, this beat is good – let’s see where it leads us!” And after that, we spend a lot of time on the arrangements to polish the final sound – and it’s then when we see how it sounds in the end:).

8.As far as I know, the band exists since 1993, but you released not too many albums. What is the cause of this and are you going to catch up this fail in the nearest years?
Oh, you’re too generous for us:). We’re around from 2003, and as for the period of the last 9 years, the material we have released is maybe not too big, but not too small either. Of course, with our new line-up, we will try to record more and more material.

9.In the early years of NEURONIA, the band chased the permanent changes of the line-up. Now the line-up stabilized. Would you like to keep the current line-up as long as possible, or you allow changes of the line-up in future?
We would very much like for it to stay as it is. It’s the best line-up the band has ever had – in my opinion – and we should stick to it. Nobody knows the future, but if we keep our heads straight, we should remain in this line-up for long years. In the past, we didn’t always understand each other, but now the atmosphere really “clicks” together.

10.Does have group members common musical predilections, and how often disputes arise in the process of writing music?
Not very often. Of course, we all have our own influences and they are very diverse, but there aren’t a lot of quarrels or disputes. Sometimes we have doubts about this or that part, but we try to settle it all amicably.

11.Which bands had the greatest influence on you? I mean, not in terms of the influence of style, but in terms of creative approach to writing music. Even if the style of these bands is different from yours.
Oh, it’s so difficult to say, there are so many… But if you ask about creative approach, I would like to name a few very different bands: Death, The Mars Volta, Kvelertak, Queen, Radiohead, Slayer, Sarcofago, Mayhem, Captain Beefheart, Ulver, Muse, Gojira, Kyuss, Baroness… there really are too many to name in such a short interview.

12.Can you name your top 5 albums of all time?
Gah! This is a very difficult question, as I have so many favorite albums! Why not 20, or 50? But I will try…
Slayer – Seasons in the Abyss
Muse – Origin of Symmetry
The Beatles – Abbey Road
Motorhead – Ace of Spades
Kvelertak – Kvelertak
And a bonus one: Turbonegro – Ass Cobra


13.Do you think there will ever be a day when you will be able to earn enough money just by playing music?
I would very much like that, but given the current situation on the market, I have no great hopes for it. The era when even lesser known bands made good money with their music, has ended together with the 90’s. Now, there are limited options for metal bands, especially in Poland. It would be nice to have some profits from the music, but it’s the passion that keeps us going, not the money.

14.Is there a concert stage, on which you would most like to play a show? (It's like "No Sleep 'til Hammersmith" with MOTORHEAD).
Oh, I would very much like to play at the Hammersmith Odeon! Other places where I would very much like to play is the House of Blues in Chicago, Wacken Open Air Festival in Germany, the Fillmore in San Francisco, Backstage in Munich, Tuska Open Air in Finland and many more. I wish that they would organize the Monsters of Rock festival, but that probably won’t happen again…

15.Often heard the idea that in rock music and metal everything has already been played, and to play something new is no longer possible. How can you comment on that?
Utter bullshit:). Of course, it’s hard to record something new and innovative, but some bands really accomplish it and with style. Take a look at Kvelertak’s debut album – sure, it all has been played before, but never so greatly intertwined and mixed together. Check out bands like The Mars Volta or Baroness, Gorod, Gojira or Obscura – there are new possibilities, it’s just that not many bands think of them :)

16.You are watching the events on the EURO-2012? What do you think about all this hysteria?
Well, it surely is a big event and it does a great job in promoting both our countries, but I think it’s taken a bit too far. The amount of money spent on the stadiums, the fuss in the media, the difficulties in traveling in the host cities… well, it’s all just too much. Let’s be happy that the world has seen us, but also that it’s over for now. And I am really a bit sad that Italy didn’t win the final… it’s my favorite foreign national team. At least Shevchenko got two goals! He’s been one of my favorite footballers since the time he arrived in AC Milan.

17.What alcohol do you prefer and what do you think about as fashionable now in rock music straight edge? As for me, all of these straight edgers, vegans etc. are idiots…
Good question! Beer is my poison of choice, and I like many brands. My favorite one is Per?a Chmielowa from my hometown of Lublin, but I also enjoy a wide range of other Polish beers and some foreign ones: Carlsberg, Newcastle Brown Ale, Karhu from Finland, San Miguel from Spain… various ones. I also like Ukrainian beers like Slavutych, Obolon etc., but for me the best Ukrainian beer is Lvivskye Premium. I also like whiskey and bourbon on the rocks with a bit of water.
As for straight-edge and vegans – it’s just parts of the punkrock and hardcore culture merging into other scenes. If one wants to steer clear of alcohol and meat, it’s their decision – live and let live. I’ve tried it myself, even. During my punk days, I was a vegetarian for almost three years and a straight-edge for six months. But it wasn’t such a great experience :) and it’s in the past now. The only thing that pisses me off are “hard-line” proselytes, who want to punish other people for drinking alcohol or eating meat. Fuck them, it’s like fascism…

18.So the final word from the band at the end of the interview. Maybe something was left unsaid?
Final word? Well, thanks for the interview, and many greetings to all your readers! Support your local scene, go to concerts and help new bands to make it big. As for our plans for the future – we are preparing the material for our new record for next year, so… watch out! METAL AND HELL!

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