sábado, 20 de agosto de 2016

Interview - Voodoopriest: Making History

After Vitor Rodrigues left the band Torture Squad, the singer has been living a new path in front of his new band, Voodoopriest, which has already become relevant in brazilian Metal scene, with the great results of the debut album "Mandu" (2014), released two years ago, talking about the indigenous warrior Mandu Ladino. We had a conversation with Vitor to talk about the current moment of his career, this two years after Mandu's release and plans for the next album.   (Versão em Português)

Road to Metal: I remember when you have leaved Torture Squad, the impact of his departure from the band was great. Sometimes, when a person leaves a band or project, usually take a break to put ideas in order, but you have been accurate and set the Voodoopriest the same year.  Leave behind a band that you was a part for 20 years and start a fresh thing, is this a kind of redemption?

Victor: Yes. In fact, remains an apprenticeship. In fact, my idea was to give a good time, then return with a band and have new members. But after the announcement of my departure from TORTURE SQUAD, I received so many messages of support, strength and positivity by the headbangers, had no idea what was the size of it, and I was only know after this happened. And from that moment, I realized the following: I was very touched, I will return with a new band and I will call members that will strengthen the brazilian metal with this band, which became the Voodoopriest.

The beginning, really, it was hard because I had to make a future musicians list. And I had many musicians who were in other bands, so I did not want to take them of their bands. But, parallel to this, I received emails from Covero and Renato Lucas. Incidentally, Covero, sent me e-mails of a few songs, and third or second e-mail, he said, 'Let's do a nice business together' And then I joined him, Renato De Lucas, who brought Bruno Pompeu (bass), and then called Edu Nicolini (drums) and Voodoopriest was formed. At first it was difficult, but after the first reherasl, the things start to happened.

RtM:To Voodoopriest start to conquer your space, you and the others had to follow a certain script. The first was fitting the line up band, the second was to discover the identity of each through tests, ideas, etc., the first EP to present the band to the public and, eventually, the final step was "Mandu", and sure, the tours. All the planning was crucial to the Voodoopriest grow quickly?

Vitor: Not only was it as being, because we always have a plan and we always try to adapt to it, which is the release of a disk, make all the propaganda on him and these things normal band. I think that helped a lot Voodoopriest was we made a strong campaign on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram not only the EP but also the release of "Mandu" and in the future, the albums to come. So, in this work, we studied well to be able to organize, and today we have the help of the staff of "1-1", what is a very nice press office. And now they are doing this part, while we take care over the musical part, because it's hard in Brazil you have to make everything alone...you have to compose music, compose riffs, compose solos, advertise on Facebook, Twitter, enter contact sponsors and a lot of people in order to make possible to put band on the stage. But now, with "One to One" to help us, things became easier. This script not only valley in music but also in the professional sectors, because you have to follow a schedule, study planning and follow it until you reach the ultimate goal.

RtM: Talking about the album "Mandu", the lyrics are about this Indian warrior, and when I was listening to the album, I was find out about it through research that I did on the internet. And the phrase that says "good Indian is a dead Indian", translates very well what the Mandu and other indigenous passed and still pass. It has always been your desire to talk about the theme, regardless the band was showing that the Indians are not exactly paupers?

Vitor: Good question! To tell you the real, in the 19 years I've been in front of the Torture Squad, at no time was I talking about a subject related to the Indians, the indigenous culture or even of Brazil, except the song '174', the album "AEquilibrium" (2010), I talk about that guy who kidnapped a bus in Rio de Janeiro and such. But after my departure, with the creation of Voodoopriest, right away, the EP came three songs talking about this topic. And from that moment, I began to delve into, because I came from indigenous descent. And both my father and my mother, they told Indian stories, it was pretty cool. And when I rode the Voodoopriest, the idea hit me full on. And when I was researching for the first album, which was the debut album even, Full, I began researching stories, legends and folklores, and I arrived just in the review of a Piaui journalist on the book Anfrisio Lobão Castelo Branco, who spoke about the  Indian Mandu Ladino.

Unfortunately, I could not have, in hand, the first and second edition of the books because they were removed from the shelf. So I had to do a search like a puzzle, join those information I had at that time, going in libraries and delve on the internet, do some research to get to this wonderful character. I, until that moment, did not even know it existed, because in schools we learn something that is totally different than it really is. I delved me so much on this issue that what was to be only a theme for a song, became a theme for the whole album. So what I did: desmembrei whole context of it and I was playing the songs. We recorded the album at Norcal Studios, with Brendan Duffey and Adriano Daga, ending the album talking about Mandu Ladino, which is a very beautiful story, strong and cool.

RtM: And the very title track, which was chosen as a single presentation, defines this concept well. And a passage that I find explicit and very interesting in this range in specific is as follows: "They fight against slavery, fight for their land / hearts full of hatred of the white man's crimes."

Vitor: Exactly! Unfortunately, I am very sad about it. It is present because before the white man arrived here in America, in Brazil there were 11,000 Indians, more or less. And unfortunately, with the arrival of the white man, that number decreased considerably. And that's sad, because until then, they were the owners of the land that they even call themselves owners. They had a relationship with a very strong land, brotherhood, where the land was more important for them, because from the land came all food and life, but only, of course, with the greed of the white man, unfortunately many ethnicities were killed and many communities Indians were massacred by the invasion of the pioneers, Portugueses and others.

"I made sure to put the green yellow headdress with red pen, representing the blood of Indians who were killed and are still dying because we do not have a strong policy and aid policy to the Indians here in Brazil."
RtM: The album cover was created by polish artist Ralf The Might, who has worked with big names in the thrash metal world. And art, as well as being cool and very well made, he could characterize the album's theme through it. 

Vitor: Actually, I wanted a cover simple but impactful. Throw the skull itself is the ancestors of indigenous and our Brazilian people. And I made sure to put the green yellow headdress with red pen, representing the blood of Indians who were killed and are still dying because we do not have a strong policy and aid policy to the Indians here in Brazil. And this is the Mandu, is the warrior strength of the Indian. And even people who do not have indigenous descent, but who considers himself an Indian is welcome, because in fact, what we are trying to preserve, therefore, is the memory and the Indian spirituality strength that come from age to age, and that continues today fighting for their freedom.

There are many stories that we have here that have not been researched and have not been shown to the public. So surely, the person who knows nothing about the "Mandu" or Indian, consequently he will achieve with the "Mandu" get that knowledge.

RtM: In addition to "Mandu" range, highlight the heavy 'Dominate and Kill', 'Religion In Flames',' Warrior 'and' Trail Of Blood. The coolest these songs is that there is an entire indigenous atmosphere without putting typical instruments that the Indians used.

Vitor: The goal was to make an aggressive album. We don't put percussive parts to give more atmosphere in the thing. Of course, the idea was born with the album "Roots", Sepultura, and Angra's "Holy Land". And through time and history, come the Glory Opera too, which is a melodic metal band that did a very nice job that is "Rising Moangá" from several other later. And today culminated with the Voodoopriest and other bands, the Levant of Native Metal, which is very cool too. And the sound of Voodoopriest is exactly that, just took the heavy part of the riffs and guitar licks, the battery more Thrash and some parts more Death Metal. And more melodious parts, because it has a heavy metal vein in the middle of it all. And joining it there, merged and created the album's personality.

"I came from indigenous descent. And both my father and my mother, they told Indian stories, it was pretty cool. And when I rode the Voodoopriest, the idea hit me full on."
RtM: And how is being the reception of "Mandu" in Brazil and in the rest of the world?

Victor: We are celebrating two years of "Mandu", and with respect to this celebration, launched lyric-videos for all the songs on "Mandu", like chapters. And it's very interesting! We are doing well, we want to further strengthen the national scene here, which is the most important, but we also have contacts out there and we are sending to those contacts. And these contacts are propagating the band internationally. Let's see if at the end of this year or next year, we embarked on an international tour and start turning things around.

RtM: On the next album, it will be treated again on indigenous issues or will you expand on various topics?

Vitor: About themes, I'm not sure waht to say now to the Road To Metal staff, because it is a very relative thing. Maybe I can get out of here now and find a super cool theme. I do a conceptual theme again and another Indian warrior, african, i don't know, as I also can write about different themes. But in relation to music, we are doing some songs and new riffs. We are already creating  and structuring the songs that will be part of the second album.

Interview: Gabriel Arruda
Translation: Carlos Garcia

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