By GMA's Bangladesh Correspondent Nabil Abaddon
Global Metal Apocalypse has always been at the forefront in covering undiscovered talented Metal bands from the obscurest of places. In the past, we have covered some really talented and uprising bands from India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, Thailand etc.
This time our attention turns towards the Sri Lankan Black Metal quartet Serpents Athirst, who are causing quite a stir in the Asian Metal scene. Formed in 2011 and performing regularly at local venues with a demo tape released through Eternal Transmigration Records (Bolivia), the band gained widespread attention when they played at Trendslaughter Fest IV (India) and shared the stage with the likes of Impiety and Orator.
They recently signed to Irish label Invictus Productions to release their upcoming EP. Serpents Athirst are going to tour Bangladesh and play at the Banish The Posers Fest 2014 on November 7th.
Banish The Posers Fest is the biggest Extreme Metal festival in Bangladesh and was established by the local cult organization Primitive Invocation. The festival started last year with the bill comprising of
Thailand's Savage Deity, Bangladeshi bands Morbidity, Orator, Nafarmaan and Warhound, India's Purgation and Malaysia's bands Lobotomy and Kathgor,
This year Primitive Invocation took the next big step in their existence by announcing the first ever major Asian Metal band Impiety (Singapore) to perform at this year's Banish The Posers Fest. The rest of the line up includes Serpents Athirst (the first ever Sri Lankan band to play in Bengal), Orator, Nafarmaan, Morbidity and Enmachined.
Click here to read about the event.
Returning back to Serpents Athirst, GMA caught up with their drummer / main composer Obliterrator and he had a lot to say.
Infernal hails Obliterrator, can you tell our readers a few things about the first period of the band?
Hails Komrade! Serpents Athirst formed in 2011 by two members in order to spread our message to the select few through live rituals and releases. Our influences from the start varied from savage acts like Venom, Blasphemy, Sarcofago, Black Witchery, Bathory and Immortal.
How does the band name depict the ideologies of the band?
Trends have caused a countless number of blemishes on this world and in order to project our hate towards trends, organized religion and weak monuments, we’ve chose the best representative to invoke that flame and spread our message: the serpent. A vile horde of serpents growling in thirst of the bloodshed of the weak. Our lyrical themes include death worship, theistic satanism, blasphemy, war and violence.
This is the very first time that a Sri Lankan Metal band is going to play in Bangladesh. How excited is the band in terms of performing at Banish The Posers Fest 2014? What should the Bengal hordes expect from Serpents Athirst?
We’re absolutely stoked. We have played with a few hordes previously at Trendslaughter. Impiety and Orator are just a few who shared the stage with us. It’s an honor to share the stage with more Asian bands. Serpents Athirst will promise to deliver the most destructive performance at this bastard of a ritual!
It seems that Serpents Athirst's compositions are velocity driven; its hateful and bestial. How does the band write its songs? Does the guitarist come up with the basic structures or are the lyrics written first?
I, stand as the composer of the band. However, at our own ritual sessions / rehearsals, there are instances where the rest of the brigade puts a mould together and is then sharpened and ready to spread like venom at the next live ritual.
Check out the song ‘Ritual Vomitting’ from their upcoming EP here
Serpents Athirst's upcoming EP "Heralding Ceremonial Mass Obliteration" is to be released through Irish label Invictus Productions. How did this record deal come about? Speaking of the EP, can you tell us about the songs in it? How much time did it take to make the entire EP?
We were offered a deal for the EP. Considering the fact that Invictus Productions is a pioneering establishment, we got hold of the deal and are currently working with Darragh from Invictus to get this EP released. The EP features 3 Songs + samples / interludes which were all put together within a period of 3-5 months.
Your upcoming EP has been recorded and mixed by Kasun Nawarathna at Blasphemous War Goat Studios. He is also the drummer of Funeral In Heaven. It must have been a blast working with such an experienced person?
Who is also one of the outstanding musicians in the Sri Lankan Extreme Metal Underground. He has been very supportive in making our releases a successful manifestation. Yes, it’s also an honor working with him. It’s also an honor to announce that Kasun Nawarathne will be handling guitar duties for this tour in November at both Calcutta and Dhaka.
Can we expect a full length in the future from Serpents Athirst? How do you picture the band's future in general?
Affirmative. Guitar tracks for the full length have already been put together, more news and samples will follow. On another note, Serpents Athirst continues to hold a very dark future.
When and how did Heavy Metal music sow its seeds in Sri Lanka> Can you also name the first few Sri Lankan Metal bands?
The Sri Lankan Metal horde came to rise in the latter part of 2002 and 2003. To name a few, there are bands like Funeral in Heaven, Forlorn Hope, Siblings of Hatred, Fallen Grace, Whirlwind and Paranoid Earthling. There had been older bands such as Rattlesnake, Thapas and Wildfire who were pioneering the earlier days of Heavy metal in Sri Lanka.
What is the metal scene in Sri Lanka like in terms of bands, musicians, gigs, venues and audience turn outs? What bands should be looked out for and have foreign bands visited Sri Lanka?
We’ve got a stellar set of bands, talented musicians and amazing turn outs at gigs every now and then. We do have issues getting a decent venue for a gig to be held in since this country hardly entertains extreme music in public areas and spaces. We usually draw a crowd of 200-300 per gig, which is quite a number in such a small country. A few bands that I raise my fists for would be; Genocide Shrines, Manifestator, Forlorn Hope, Plecto Aliquem Capite, Panzer III, Goatmunition, Paraiah Demise, Funeral in Heaven, Forsaken, Fallen Grace, Dhishti, Old Castles Massacre and Arra to name a few. As for foreign bands, we have had a few but not many. There is hope for more bands in the days ahead.
Apart from playing for Serpents Athirst, what do you guys do for living? How much time from your daily lives do you get to devote to your band on practice sessions, song making / recordings, etc?
We all have a job to support our music. This is clearly not a country that enables you to develop a steady income with extreme music. In this case we have no option to do what we have to do to keep our music steady. We devote a certain amount of time depending upon our work load etc.
What were the first few Black Metal records you owned or heard that really connected with you and made you decide to become a Black Metal musician?
Venom’s ‘Black Metal’ was a favorite that first connected me. In addition, Sarcofago’s ‘I.N.R.I’, Blasphemy’s ‘Fallen Angel of Doom’, Nagelfar’s ‘Virus West’, Immortal’s ‘Sons of Nothern Darkness’ and some of our very own local offerings were also a motivation towards making extreme music (Watch Serpents Athirst’s live performances here)
This year Serpents Athirst played at the Trendslaughter Fest IV in February where you performed alongside the likes of Ugra Karma, Orator and Impiety. Surely, sharing the stage with Impiety was a dream come true? How was your interaction with Shiyathan Kommand?
Indeed, it was a killer experience and our debut concert overseas. Goatfather from Impiety was as supportive as he could be. So were the brothers from Orator who have also been close friends with Sri Lankan Musicians.
Serpents Athirst is also going to Kolkata, India with Impiety and Orator to perform at Order Of The Heretical Trident Festival, which is right after BTPF. What do you have to say about it?
A productive invasion like this only provokes us more and more to spew the venomous hate towards humanity and grow stronger.
What do you have to say about the horde of Primitive Invocation for arranging this vehement event?
The komrades from Primitive Invocation are by far one of the pioneering event managers and supporters of the Asian underground. We're truly honored to have worked with their blasphemous terror front!
Thanks for spending time with us to do this interview. I hope to see you soon on stage at BTPF 2014! The last words are yours.
Likewise. Infernal hails for the interest, Praise!