Interview with Peso and Flegias
by Arto Lehtinen
It was about time to talk to the Italian blackthrashers, Necrodeath’s drummer Peso and vocalist Flegias, about the most recent output called 100% HELL. The Italian four piece has undergone some line-up changes as long time and founding member Claudio pulled out, whose interviews can be found here (2001) and here (2004).
Necrodeath’s music should appeal to all extreme metal fans as the band’s tight and aggressive black-thrash assault is like a brutal slap to the face. The most recent album is another excellent masterpiece from these Italian extreme metal mongers. Enjoy the interview…
Good day there, how is it going there in Italy nowadays?
Peso: We’re just travelling to Florence, nice wheather but tomorrow will be cold and moreover today is my birthday and we’re going to party a lot!
What’s up right now in the Necrodeath, have you been working on the new material or just taking a time off from the band activies?
Flegias: Now we’re busy with the re-issue of “Fragments of Insanity” through Scarlet Records and we are promoting it. In the meanwhile we’re working in the reharsal room for the next release.
All right, I assume it might be a reasonable idea to kick the whole interview off by focusing on the latest Necrodeath album called “100 % HELL”, but before going on any further, I gotta inquire where the idea to name the sixth full length Necrodeath album with such an interesting name was made up? Does it have any deeper meaning however?
Flegias: The topics of the album are all very direct and hard, they’re a cold critic to the world we’re living in: a whole hell! 100% hell is a slogan we abitually use and in this situation it’s suites perfectly for the album title.
The first comeback Necrodeath albums were recorded and produced in Sweden, but the latest ones have been carried out from the beginning to the end in Italy like the latest one, What was the biggest difference between working methods of Italian and Swedish producers from your point of view?
Flegias: Swedish methods are surely more “surgical” and any detail was maniacally worked out, resulting an album with a cold and northern sound. We prefered working in Italy for the latest albums because the new compositions needed more “pathos” and a warm production, and a good work on the details as well.
How did the recording process of 100 HELL differ for example compared to the other recording processes of the older Necrodeath album, for example TONS OF HATE?
Peso: The recording process is always the same: we first record the drums, then the guitars and then John and Flegias record bass and voice, then, after a week break for resting, we work on the final mixing.
There was for about a three year break between those albums, why did it take such a long time to get 100 % HELL out? Did you work on the material for the album ?
Peso: Well, in 2005 the compilation “20 years of noise” was released, in 2004 John and I were busy with the project Raza De Odio, and in the meanwhile Claudio left the band, and composing without Claudio support wasn’t so simple. Moreover we played a lot of concerts. Then we finded who would have recorded the guitar on 100% hell. Those years, actually, were really intense and productive.
The previous album, TONS OF HATE, got weird mixes of reviews, from the not so good to the positive side. Whereas 100% HATE has got nothing, but utter mindblowing feedback all in all, how do you personally react and take various responds toward your works?
Peso: Once I got bad when I read bad reviews, now I realize that they are only subjective thoughts and I don’t give a shit, even if I think “Ton(e)s of Hate” has a very good mix.
Flegias: The two albums where recorded and mixed in the same studio with the same producer and the same technicians… there are not big differences but actually in “Ton(e)s of Hate” we had to experiment some new things that in 100% hell where already experimented and working well.
But personally speaking you gotta be extremely pleased with the result on 100% HELL, are there some certain parts that you would like to change now afterwards?
Flegias: Not even I, it’s perfect!
You, Peso, are in charge of most of the lyrics of Necrodeath. I can’t help ask how much the catholic dogma and all these religious aspects have influenced you to write lyrics? Do you have some kind of mandatory topics that you wanna write about in the lyrics?
Peso: They influence me a lot since I realize how much religion is something different from the faith. What church want to say (to) us trough its text is questionable in any part. Not only the bible but even some parts of the first gospels have been censored and written again in other ways. It seems even the four evangelists are false… that’s why during my life I got to this point where faith and religion are two different and separated things.
There has always been a figure of a female on the frontcover of each Necrodeath album, where does this so called tradition come from to have a femal figure on your albums?
Flegias: Because we like the sluts!
Peso: It’s not true, on the cover of “Fragments of Insanity” there’s a labyrinth and on the cover of the compilation there’s Flegias… Actually it’s a kind of symbol we have always used but it’s not a tradition…
You have had a minor, but otherwise major line-up change in the rank, when the long time and one of the original members along with Peso, Claudio pulled out of the band to focus on other things in his life. But was it a hard choice to loose Claudio after all, as he has been the mastermind of Necrodeath together with Peso after all? I guess you are still friends?
Flegias: Of course we are still best friends, and he played with us at Gods Of Metal open air festival in June 2006.Claudio’s departure was only a private matter and nothing else. Moreover we substituted him with very good guitarists, even if we are still loking for the final guitarist…
There was some young looking guy on the latest album 100% HELL doing all the guitars, but obviously he didn’t stay that long in the rank as replaced by another guy Pier from Labyrinth. Actually who was this young lad on the album, when and why was he dimissed from Necrodeath ? Didn’t he fit to the world of Necrodeath?!
Flegias: Actually Necrodeath’s world is really challenging and how you noticed he was a very young guy, still engaged in studying. He couldn’t play during all the promotional tour and that’s why we asked to Pier to play with us, he’s a friend of us ad he’s always enthusiast to play with us.
How did Pier end up to Necrodeath ? I guess he is still in Labyrinth??
Flegias: Of course he’s always the Labyrinth guitarist. The cooperation with Pier began in the easy way, since he’s a good friend of us and he lives in our city, it was really simple to work with him because he’s a professional and any second of his life is dedicated to the music.
As for the videos, as far as I know you have put out quite a few promovideos out by now. How much do you usually invest both the money and time on the process of the making of the videos ?! And where do you usually manage to find and lure those grim, but hot looking chicks for the videos?
Flegias: The videos are produced by ourselves without the engagement of the record label. We like doing it because we can give to the music something more: the images. Moreover it’s my job and it makes everything easy.
I guess and am afraid the Necrodeath videos are not shown, at least, not that much on TV, but at least the Italian ROCK TV has shown and in general supported Necrodeath quite a lot, how about other tv stations?
Flegias: We don’t make videos for the TV networks. The reason we make the videos is to spread them on the web, above all on MySpace www.myspace.com/necrodeath100x100 – we had more then 10.000 guests in the last few months and a lot of people watched the videos.
Do you view that you have managed to lure new fanbase with these videos ?
Flegias: I don’t think our music genre is a genre that can lure fans through a video. We make videos for our fans, it’s a present for them and us. The more visibility videos have compared to our music makes our name go through other music brands…
Necrodeath have mainly done a plenty of gigs in your own homeland, Italy, but quite rarely shows in other European countries, but apparently you toured with Marduk and then at least you have one festival date in Germany at Headbangers Open Air back in 2005. What kind of following do you have in Italy nowadays ?! Do you just constinully avoid getting to be booked to play outside of Italy?
Flegias: To book outside Italy is hard because obviously there are more expenses. In Italy Necrodeath name is very well known and it’s easy for us to book gigs.
Peso: Well please book us for the Tavastia in Hel(l)sinki!
You played at the annual Gods Of Metal festival and came across Phil Anselmo, how did he react when he noticed the legendary Necrodeath were on the bill as well?
Peso: Well we drank together and sang some old Necrodeath song together.
I can’t help asking how your tour with Marduk ? What kind of respond did you get from the audience, as apparently it was quite black metal crowd ?
Flegias: Our music is not less violent than Marduk, it’s only different and that’s why the feedback from the audience was very good and we had fun as well, it was a great experience.
Peso you have a long historical background in the Italian extreme metal scene since the early 80’s as you have played other bands beside Necrodeath for example the legendary Sadist. Well after the demise of Necrodeath after the second album you continued with Sadist (early named NecroSadist) which have gained some kind of cult status, I assume you were quite pleased with the first two Sadist albums where you played on, but the other albums were not that let’s say now appealing??
Peso: I didn’t play on the latest Sadist album, I left the band in December 1996. I’m really satisfied of the first two album but waht happened after my departure it’s not my business.
Now it seems like Sadist have been reactivated from the beyond, I guess you are not the part in the reunited Sadist?!
Peso: No. I’m Necrodeath 100%.
Beside Sadist, you were also involved in AngelDeath, how did you get hooked up by that outfit and what did you release with them?
Peso: Fuck I really forgot that band! In truth I played with them for a week end recording a 7″ (Gore).
Each of you has some other side band going on. As far as I know Flegias and John are in Cadaveria, and you Peso are involved in Raza De Odio. How are you able to share time between these bands and Necrodeath, cos Necrodeath is obviously priority?
Peso: Actually I left Raza de Odio because I didn’t have enough time because each second of my free time is dedicated to Necrodeath.
Flegias: We make it because we organize everything, sharing the dates for the concerts and the reharsal. Moreover we have a lot of passion and perseverance and that’s how we make it!
All right Peso, which bands have you been listening to recently?
Peso: The albums I’m listening in these days is the last Celtic Frost album, very strange I still have to listen to it better. I’m listening to a live album from Dead Can Dance, moreover I still listen to old classics like Kreator, Destruction and Slayer.
I for one thank you for your interest to do the interview, but as usual, the last words are yours …..
Flegias: ok we are near Florence and we thank you for the very nice interview (you know everything man!).
Peso: See you soon Arto, maybe in Tuska this year. I’ll do everything to be there together with you. Please take a look to our pages for the latest news.
The official Necrodeath sites: