KREATOR Interview - The Roc Issue 6


This is ROCS interview with Mille of KREATOR. It was done March 25th when they played in Cleveland at Empire. We thank Yanna and Dennis at NOISE INTERNATIONAL for arranging it, we thank Empire and most of all, we thank KREATOR.

Q. How has the US response been to the COMA OF SOULS tour?

M. Oh it's really good. We've been here for almost 3 weeks now and we've had some great shows.

Q. Are you happy with the tour package of bands?

M. Definitely definitely. We've always did that. We don't try to get bands on the bill that play the same kind of music as we do. It doesn't make sense to go on tour with bands that sound like us. So we decided to make this tour a little more interesting by putting a band like BIOHAZARD who play like N.Y.C. hardcore, you know, really powerful and this other band from Germany, MORGOTH who plays death metal music. I think that's like an interesting bill for everybody who goes to see the show. It's not only like one kind of music with really different bands, it's cool! Each band stands on its own.

Q. Was it your choice for MORGOTH to come on the tour?

M. Yea, we asked for them.

Q. With thrash more acceptable in the US now do you think COMA OF SOULS will make KREATOR more accessible to a wider audience?

M. Everytime we write an album we don't go like, let's make it more mainstream or whatever, just to go into the studio and make something. We don't think like that. YOU know we play the music for ourselves and we want to have fun with the stuff we are doing, and if people are gonna like it, it's cool! I mean we always play like thrash but we don't want to be labeled only as a Thrash Metal band. We want to cover differnt stuff as well, like on this new album we're not only playing straight speed all the time. We want heaviness to it and atmosphere. That's like the most important thing to us right now is creating an atmosphere with the lyrics and the music. That's how songs like TERROR ZONE came about. You know like your creating something like a heavy Gothic atmosphere like really weird! And that's what we wanna do on the next LP. We want to work on that and make it more doomier, but we want to do it different than TROUBLE or say, CANDLEMASS. It should be our style still, but different. We always try to come up with something original but different. Doomie always reminds people of bands like TROUBLE or old SABBATH. We want to be doomie in our way.

Q. Since you mentioned some other bands, what's some of your influences?

M. When we started up or right now?

Q. Well both. What made you want to play guitar and be in a band?

M. When we started it was bands like IRON MAIDEN, JUDAS PRIEST and definitely KISS. And when the first VENOM record came out we were still playing PRIEST cover tunes and all kinds of heavy metal stuff. So, when VENOM came out, we were really influenced by that kind of stuff. So we started to kinda play fast, yea! VENOM was like the change. RAVEN and VENOM they made the change start. Because RAVEN were really fast, remember that BLACK SAVAGE in England? They played speed-metal even way before METALLICA did, and that kinda made us play fast. Also the first METALLICA was an influence.

Q. How many times have you toured the US how?

M. This is the fourth time. The last time we headlined with CORONOR. We did two tours with DRI and one with VOI VOD.

Q. Being in the US on these tours, and with this PMRC thing starting-up have they given you guys any flack?

M. So far I think our band isn't big enought yet! I mean they don't really know that we're around. I think as we grow as a band and get bigger and if they kinda see that we are around then I think they might give us some shit. See right now we are not sure what's gonna happen with the new video (PEOPLE OF THE LIE) because it could cause some trouble. We like it because we're really into horror movies, right. This video shows you this demon, the whole story about the demon on the album cover. So its got some stuff that some people might not like. So we hope they don't fuck it up with editing or anything. So we have to wait and see what happens.

Q. Any problems getting it on MTV?

M. It's going to be presented to MTV by our record company today. (3/25/91) So we'll see what happens. We brought it to Montreal for Music Plus, the MTV of Canada and they played it right away, they liked it. It's really different. It doesn't look like a heavy metal video at all. You can hardly see the band. It looks more like a kinda Gothic wave thing. It's like real weird. It's got all these weird colors, it's not really colorful its more like brown, you know kinda like an old horror movie kind of stuff. We tried to make the atmosphere really underground and dark. It's different from all the other videos that are on MTV. Everybody I've shown it to has liked it. But that's maybe the thing that this fucking censorship will go after and give us some shit. We definitely plan to release this as a home video. The video we are gonna show on MTV is only a R-rated version of what we put on the home video. We did it because we are really into horror movies.

Q. We see COMA OF SOULS bears the infamous sticker. How do you feel about that?

M. Yes, we always get them on our albums. As long as they don't destroy the artwork. It's not that big so I don't care.

Q. We fight against the album stickers because a lot of stores here won't handle albums with it. How is it in Germany?

M. Over in Germany its starting right now. It's starting, this shit, this censorship shit. That is something I really don't understand. Everybody from Germany sees that over here the censorship thing is happening and it's bullshit. And they copy the whole thing. It's weird! I know that in Germany they copy a lot of good stuff from the US, but they also copy the bad shit. It's stupid! What happened in Germany was they had three heavy metal shows on cable TV. Well it really was two. Two heavy metal and one alternative which had really cool new wave, punk, underground, alternative hardcore stuff. They also showed whoever came to town with a lot of live stuff. It was really cool, you had bands like BAD RELIGION playing on TV and all that shit. All of a sudden they had a show on regular TV where they totally ripped the whole metal thing apart. They talked about JUDAS PRIEST and the suicide case and how they were guilty and so on. The whole thing was done by a reporter who didn't know anything about music or what he was talking about. After his report the heavy metal shows on cable TV were all canceled. So it's starting and it's really bad, I can't understand why, it's all art you know. Every form of art shouldn't be treated like that. Censorship is something we shouldn't even have to talk about, but they are there and they have power and that's the scary thing. Used to be when someone asked me about censorship, I would say ahh fuck off, you know it's like what? But now I see these people have power and its scary. At this point we explained to Mille how the people holding the power here that we spoke about was wives of senators and other high government officials along with right-wing religious fanatics. We told him, that just the week before we were in Lorain to take on the record/book burning Peters Brothers. Hearing about these guys really hit a nerve with Mille. Here's what he said.

M. That reminds me of something! That's the same thing some of my people did. They did it in 1939. It's crazy! How can people do that and still be serious, it's a joke.

Q. What about album covers. In Europe many covers are different than the ones released in the US. Some even show nudity. Are KREATOR's covers different?

M. No! Our covers are the same. This is also artwork on the the new album cover. Did you know the picture on the inside of the demons head is a piece from the 15th century? So the COMA OF SOULS cover is a combination of old ancient art and modern art. They couldn't do anything about that, I hope. In Europe it's not that bad with nudity. They show naked women anywhere they want. Over there you know what they do? They edit and censor horror movies, they won't show blood. They have the worst porno movies there, the ugliest you know. Their way more scared of violence in Germany. You should see the German versions of the HELL-RAISER films. Man they're the worst. They cut all the most important stuff, you can't get the meaning of the movie anymore. So that's how censorship works over there. Over here, it's more sexual, they're afraid of seeing tits or whatever. In Germany it's the horror flicks. You know you have to be 18 to rent or buy a horror film from a video store, and they are edited. I go to Holland and buy movies all uncut. Holland is a cool country. They don't censor anything.

Q. So has KREATOR had any problems as a band in Germany?

M. We were named in a magazine they put out that was supposed to be some kind of education about drugs. They had lyrics translated into German by Black Sabbath, Slayer and us. They had the lyrics to EXTREME AGGRESSION translated and this guy was trying to say it was about drugs. And then the funniest one was, I wrote this song on the last album called STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS. It was inspired by a woman who is some kind of medium who can talk with people in some other sphere, right. They found out that she was also a member of the Satanic church, and because I wrote the song, I was a Satanist. That's total bullshit! It just doesn't make sense at all to me, it's almost funny. They're all educated people right, they should know all about philosophy. I mean, they should know that if there's a good side, there has to be an evil side as well. To make the good look good maybe, I mean what the fuck! And why not write about both sides? That's life and life is not only good and it's not only evil. That's what they don't realize.

--Mike Heck