1. How did 毒蠱 form? Could you tell me a little about how you guys met each other?
Tormentorx: I want to play something I really want to do , Gut(Vocal) and I had processed this plan last year , and finally we make it real this year. We guys know each other in gigs or online for the purpose of Thrash Metal , and Gut(Vocal) is actually my best friend now , I met RH(Guitar) 3 years ago , he is quite a low-key guitarist in China , he also has good techniques in guitar. Then I met Speed Scum Dog(Drum) last year and Spike(Bass) this year , those 2 guys are from one city – HeFei ,I mean they are really tough metal guys too , when we meet each other we can drink morning after that’s the best things for me.
Gut:I have to say, 毒蠱 could be a plan just for fun, I wanna play some Death/thrash style suits my taste, and I can feel comfortable in this band. I met RH(Guitar) and Tormentor(Guitar) few years ago with a local communication APP, and we have a common goal too.I met Speed Scum Dog(Drum) in a metal gig , and the bass guy Spike I knew him once I shared my LOGO design on the website.
Spike:I am the second bass player in this band , I’m a good friend of Speed Scum Dog(Drum),through his recommendation I join毒蠱, and I met other band guys in Atrophy’s show on June.
SpeedScumDog:Tormentorx(Guitar) and Gut(Vocal) told me about the plan of 毒蠱 in Spring,they need a drummer , I prefer to Thrash metal and we are also friends before, we have a common goal too.I met them in a metal gig and wen were drunk at that night.Then we find RH to be another guitarist,get Spike for bass.Spike is a bass player of my another band too ,we live in the same city ,we often rehearsal and drink together(Spike can drink a lot!)
2.What do you guys do in your spare time, other than being part of a band?
Tormentorx: I worked in an instrumental wholesale trade company , in my spare time I always practice my guitar,play some PC games and watch movies…
Gut:I’m the vocal of 毒蠱 , and I am a postgraduate student studing oil painting in LuXun Academy Of Fine Arts,ShenYang.I paint all of the logos and demo covers of 毒蠱 , I can get more inspiration of the cover from my band, all songs are so cult in毒蠱.
Spike:I’m a copywriter meantime I’m a planner in an advertisement company.
SpeedScumDog:I teach drum to children in a school , but I dont really like this job because I can teach them how to play Blastbeat haha.Except listening music and practising drums I play some Fighting games, especially <Street Fighter>!My favourite role is Akuma, he is a fist master,a person of good and evil.
3.I understand “毒蠱” has something to do with “Tame Head”, a character of black magic in your culture. Could you describe a little more about where the band name comes from?
Tormentorx: Yeah, as you said 毒蠱 is kinds of a Tame Head , it’s a black magic from ancient times.To me , I watched a movie named毒蠱 2 years ago,this movie’s director is PengLin(彭龄) , I think the name is important for a band , now too many bands use Zombies , Nuclears or Wars in their band’s name,I don’t want to follow the usual way so I deicide to name my band as a title of a movie.
4.Your Bandcamp page says your songs are inspired by the Shaw Brothers’ movies. Could you tell me a bit about this?
Tormentorx: We really like the old films in China,especially Shaw Brothers,I think there are too many cult or B movies learned from the early Shaw Brother films,In 1970s Kuei Chih-hung(桂治洪)[a famous Shaw Brothers director] filmed the movie<Ghost Eyes>(鬼眼),it’s a very cult movie about ghosts and the poster is too old-school .In a word , these elements fit Thrash Metal,by the way I also watch some martial arts film in Shaw Brothers.
5. Why does the band sing in English, but have your song titles and band name in Chinese?
Tormentorx: That’s my personal preference within a Chinese title in every song , and one song represents one SB movie. About the lyrics, in my opinion,if you sing with Chinese it would be so silly , there are only one band here did good in Chinese – Explosicum.
6. Does any part of your local culture have an important place within your music?
Tormentorx:I don’t have any place now,just write songs tribute to old cult SB movies.
7. Is there a particular message you want to get out with your music? Or is it all just for fun?
Tormentorx: It is not easy here to play underground metal music, so I feel satisfied with my band because it is the way I want to play , I don’t have a high ideology level so you can say it is for fun.
Gut: To me,like I said in question 1 , I can vent my hatred through the band, when I start drawing and design in normal times ,its something like a constriction I can release from the songs…
Spike: For music , the most important thing is music itself, make songs sound extreme is also a feature of heavy metal music, for us our music is not only for fun , its like a stretch as a metal fans.We put our comprehension of Death/Thrash style into our music, It's not about trying to be tough or cool, but we think our music should look like this. We don't care about the ideology or any of the other appeals in the work.
SpeedScumDog:To me, I do it for fun , I like the Riffs written by Tormentorx , I feel so relax when I write the drum beats in those Riffs and play it with myself. When we are all done with our parts, I’m pleasantly surprised after the first demo released .A couple of fanatics got together and started playing our favorite music. It was awesome. It was fucking fun!
8. Where do you guys record your music?
Tormentorx: I record 2 lines of guitars with a cheap steinburg and cubase at home , and I mixed them with myself,its not professional but we don’t care.All of the band members come from different cities , under these conditions,we still not record the real drumkit in our 2 demos , we will release a 7’ Vinyl include 2 songs in December or January and we will record the real drumkit too.
9. Why do you choose to play in the death/thrash style?
Tormentorx: My favourite style could be Death/thrash or Brutal thrash,they suit my character,and I will never play those GAY nu metal or fast food thrash.
Gut: That’s a easy question , kill or be killed ! Tormentor(Guitar) also listened too many death/thrash albums,all of us like it,we don’t play any shits or do any stupid things,and we don’t like fast food thrash too ,.
Spike:Personally, I prefer to Thrash metal , early extreme metal is largely associated with some part of the Thrash, not much was known about Death/Thrash at first , in addition to a relatively big band, like Protector, Incubus, Pestilence, Massacra ,I m impressed with the fanatic feeling , when I first heard the demo of 毒蠱,I feel good, that's it.
SpeedScumDog:Becasue I like to listen Death/Thrash!Of course I want to play them with myself , like Gut said:kill or be killed , we don’t talk about shits in this style.
Chinese metal scene:
1. What’s the Chinese metal scene like?
Tormentorx: It’s Ok , there are some good thrash bands in China , such as Ancestor , Explosicum , Hellfire . And a war metal band named Desecrated is good too , our bass and drum played in that band.
Spike:In view of that small group of music, it is inevitable that the two extreme phenomenon of the underground and the public will be developed, and the metal atmosphere in China has been developed a lot earlier in the year, mainly on the number of fans. But you can see that there's a lot of things that are going to happen in China, and it's also a little bit of unkind bands, and these bands tend to go through social marketing, and they're not giving them a basic idea of a music, and that's not good. However, with the development of the Internet, the group of metal fans is still growing day by day. Some fans have a more perfect aesthetic taste, and the level of musicians has also been significantly improved, which is still better. Overall, the metal atmosphere in China is not at the level that breeds a large number of excellent metal bands
2. Do you guys play shows often? If not, how come?
Tormentorx: We still not have any gigs now, someone asked me this year but I refused because of the time , we will perform next year , please wait.
Spike:Yes we still not have shows , we are still working on the album recording and music creation and will be performing next year.The way to deal with it is to meet and drink and drink, and drink and drink.
3. Does your local culture approve of the metal style?
Tormentorx:I think it is acceptable, I don’t have any idea with this question.
Spike:Most elements of metal music are rejected by traditional Chinese culture, but in recent years, the development of entertainment industry has indirectly promoted the development of many underground cultures, and most people have a basic impression of various music styles. What is remarkable is that most people do not call all music rock music, but most people's acceptance level is also limited to this.
SpeedScumDog:Whatever,people who don't accept metal are everywhere, and they'll never hear us, and they don't give us a chance to tell us what to do, and that's great.
4. Is metal gaining popularity in your country?
Tormentorx:: I think so but I don’t care more about them…
Spike:Metal music still has many extreme elements compared to popular music, which means it is difficult to be promoted or accepted as a mainstream culture. Therefore, whether it is popular or not means nothing to me. I will not care whether it is popular or not.