Saturday, 10 March 2012

Interview: Perdition Temple

USA's Perdition Temple formed in 2008, after the demise of mighty Angelcorpse. The band is just one album old (As for the album that was Gene did all guitars/bass/vocals and Terry Eleftheriou did the drum works for the record) but there is NO need for an introduction to a band like PERDITION TEMPLE as the members have been around for so long already. But something might be known, something not...who knows! So I decided to ask Gene Palubicki (also in Apocalypse Command, Blasphemic Cruelty) some questions about his whole career.

Ebby: Greetings Gene, What are the next steps in the career of Perdition Temple?

Gene: Right now I've got the line-up completed with new drummer Ronnie Parmer, bassist Gabriel Gozainy, and vocalist Collin Andrews. We've done one local show here in our city and will doing several more nearby as well as the upcoming MARTYRDOOM fest in New York in June. I've got some new songs developed but for the meantime it is time for getting these songs from the debut album out on the live front.

Ebby: Edict of the Antichrist Elect is Perdition Temple's first release, consisting of 8 tracks. Each song has interesting riffs! How long did the songwriting and recording take? The band formed in 2008 I presume. 

Gene: Some of the stuff on that album was written even prior to some of the songs that appeared on the final Angelcorpse album. One of them is being written for the most part almost 8 years ago. I wrote a lot of material that ended up just being shelved during the period of the original Angelcorpse break-up in 2000 up till the reformation that happened in 2006. The actual recording process was much more relaxed than on previous efforts being that I've now got a modest home studio set-up for recording my.

Guitars/Bass/Vocals/etc... It also shaves a lot of expenses when you're not watching a clock while trying to record your parts. 

Ebby: Who did the art work for the album Edict of the Antichrist Elect?

Gene: Longtime Death/Black metal artist Christopher Moyen.

Ebby: What led you to choose Edict of the Antichrist Elect as the title for the album? Is there any concept you depicted in this album? 

Gene: It was an appropriate title for a début for the 'new' band. Everything I've built over the years has basically created commands, or a sort of ‘law’ to how my things are done, and given my personal leanings the title really states my mission.

Ebby: Perdition Temple's first release was a full-length album. That is not usual in metal; mostly some blasphemous demos come before. Do you think that it’s because of your massive experience from Angelcorpse?

Gene: Yes. And given the volume of material I had on hand, I figured why just piece meal it out when I could just bulldoze ahead with the full album. I didn't feel compelled to need to make some 2 or 3 song teaser demo. I have enough confidence in what I do to just go for it right out of the gate. 

Ebby: Do you take inspiration from other bands or other forms of art? 

Gene: I have been amused by Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche stuff as well as stuffs from De Sade, Devi, or even occultists like Blavatsky... All have had some degree of impact in having spelled out things that I feel and can relate to.

Ebby: Have you continued to write your lyrics in that same way as you did in Angelcorpse. Or have they changed? Would you like to express of your lyrical aspects on the album?

Gene: I never wrote any of the lyrics in Anelcorpse. At most I guided some of the subject matter and evolved many of the song-titles. Perdition Temple is my début for lyrics that fully represent where I am at and how I relate to certain subjects. But anyone who followed the course of subject matter with my previous band will find nothing has really changed much from the one band to this one... I have no compulsion to reinvent myself as what I've evolved to naturally is perfectly fine for me to continue with now.

Ebby: Who came up with the name Perdition Temple?

Gene: I did. Its meaning is understood as a gathering for the celebration of all Darkness, Ruin, and Abomination. 

Ebby: You are nearly two decades in the underground metal scene as a musician. How does it feel like to look back on your career? What impact do these experiences have on you as a person?

Gene: For more than half of my life now I have been somehow involved with all of this. It is for the most part the place where I find things most sensible to me. When I am at work at my job or going about other mundane "life" affairs I'm often regarded as disconnected or distracted. Which is for the most part accurate as I feel no connection to “living” as a part of anyone’s community? All the humdrum of the "normal" or "regular" world has no inspiration for me at all. The only thing that gives me any kick at all is what I am able to create from my own version of "reality". 

Ebby: How has Angelcorpse shaped or changed your personality?

Gene: I guess time has shown that this music, either in my past with ANGELCORPSE or now with PERDITION TEMPLE, or others like BLASPHEMIC CRUELTY, this is what I was intended to do. There is no other actual passion I have in life other than being creative through this form. Ask me again in 20 years if I am still around, I am sure I'll repeat this same statement.

Ebby: Are you still in contact with your old drum mates Tony Laueano and John Longstreth?

Gene: I catch up with both from time to time.

Ebby: Terry's drum works on the record is very appreciable, he certainly proves himself a talented drummer. He hits his drums fucking relentlessly, with insanely fast footwork that continues throughout the entire album.

Gene: He has a perfect choice for working on those songs and on the record. He completely understood ALL of what/where I wanted the album to go. I am certain we will do work together in the future, likely for whatever I do next for my APOCALYPSE COMMAND works. Since terry is not able to (currently) enter the USA, I've had to bring in new drummer Ronnie Parmer who is local to my area and is doing amazing work with me now on learning and recreating the album songs and has some great input for future stuff. So I guess in these last years I've been quite lucky with drummers. As opposed to many problems we had in ANGELCORPSE during it's last days...

Ebby: Edict of the Antichrist Elect was released via Osmose Production. You have a good relationship with them since Hammer of Gods (1996).

Gene: Aside from the mixing of the album which was done in a studio, all my guitars/vocals/bass were recorded on my home studio stuff, all of which is very modest gear, but quite suitable for my needs. Best part is not having someone trying to "produce" or give an outside input on what is being attempted. Osmose has always been an ally. It is possible that PERDITION TEMPLE may continue with them for the future. We'll see what happens. 

Ebby: In the studio, is it just yourself and Terry? I mean any guest musicians?

Gene: No guests on the album.

Ebby: I heard that you are working with some new members for doing live performance.

Gene: Perhaps no extended length tours since in these times we're all tied up with jobs and other responsibilities, blah blah but there will certainly be a steady stream of select shows on a consistent basis.
Ebby: Gene, you were also doing a record label called as Evil Vengeance Records. Angelcorspe's main material was released on Osmose, the singles, EP's, and live albums were released on yours Evil Vengeance Records. Is it still around?

Gene: The label thing ended around 2002. All the ANGELCORPSE ep's we essentially just official 'exclusive' band releases. All that stuff ended up on the compilation album put out by OSMOSE called "Iron, Blood AND Blasphemy" 

Ebby: Certain subjects seem to be ageless in metal. Philosophy, Apocalypse, Anti Christianity, Warfare, and Satanism are just some of them. Deicide's début album Deicide essentially took Satanism to a whole new extreme in early 90's. This was not the cheesy kind of Satanism we find in Venom or Bathory. Satanic thoughts spread through the metal music. It will last as long as metal exist.

Gene: Strong ideals are always going to find a perfect fit with strong art. It will be the same 20-50 years from now and beyond.

Ebby: We can go back in time to late 90's to when The Inexorable came out as it’s one of my most favourite albums. Edict of the Antichrist Elect has a clear The Inexorable influence; this can be heard especially from most of the riffs. I know the musical styling of Angelcorpse continue on in the form of Perdition Temple. Is this something that you especially wanted to incorporate in your compositions?

Gene: From the musical side, for me there is no separation from what I was doing in ANGELCORPSE to what I am doing in PERDITION TEMPLE. There was actually criticism about PERDITION TEMPLE that it sounded so close to the ANGELCORPSE sound. Ha, that was the point! Because though, since there were enough changes to the sound, such as the vocals and lyrics coming from a different source, it was appropriate for a name change, so I came up with the new name that best represented the place where the music now.

Ebby: I'd like to talk about your past. I have heard that while on tour with Immortal, Satyricon, and Krisiun, in support of The Inexorable, Angelcorpse had an accident in your tour van, in which Pete was injured! Can you expound on that? On the same tour, Helmkamp's girlfriend was stabbed, and he decided to leave the band and rest of you guys continued for a while but decided to split up... 

Gene: We all took some damage in the van wreck. And yes there was also the stabbing incident. We finished a few shows of that tour without Pete... and then a few weeks after the tour he decided to leave the band.

Ebby: But in 2007, the band reformed and recorded a new album, Of Lucifer and Lighting. Your first after an eight year split, offered the listeners the same ferocity that Angelcorpse's first three releases did, as well as something a little more but Pete said of the reunion."It just seems like the planets realigned. It's not like we didn't get along or that there were any bridges to mend". 

Gene: It all seemed to be a point in time that the idea was good. Pete had lyrics and I had tons of song materials.... timing seemed well. So we did the album, and also had some great tours/shows to go along with it. But I guess for both he and I our sights for the future had already begun to drift to some different places which resulted in the permanent ending of the band.

Ebby: Talking of Pete. His music is uncompromising and chaotic. A total fucking onslaught. It is a credit to him. He has always tried to do his own thing from the beginning of Order from Chaos. But I can say that Pete is an ominous musician because most of his projects are short-lived! What do you have to say about Pete Helmkamp personally?

Gene: I can say that Pete will decide on some radical direction changes at almost a moment’s notice, and in some of the situations it has in turn caused abrupt endings to otherwise promising projects. That aside, the works produced are always of a high quality standard.

Ebby: Perdition Temple confirmed to play at Martyrdoom Festival 2012 which might be the best underground extreme metal festival in USA. The fest features many other amazing bands such as Encoffination, Grave Miasma, Cruciamentum, Dead Congragation and mighty Evoken, etc.

Gene: It will be an amazing time playing with many of these contemporary juggernauts of hardline death/black metal...It'll be fantastic to contribute to blowing the whole place apart!