Procuring and Conserving the Madness

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Resurrected death metal unit Pestilence are poised to descend upon the land of the free and home of the brave for a month-long spree of mind-bending tech death mayhem — a tour also featuring Vital Remains, Warbringer, Enfold Darkness and Sacrificial Slaughter ― beginning with a stop at this year’s Maryland Deathfest. This will mark the band’s first appearance Stateside in over 16 years. Pestilence mastermind Patrick Mameli recently chatted with Teeth of the Divine about the new lineup, getting back into the groove of things, and, even though we tried to confuse him and didn’t do our research, he trampled our puny questions like a true champ.

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I checked out the rough version of the newest Pestilence song you have on the Myspace page [“AmGod”].  Is that kind of the same vein that the rest of the new material will be in?  That’s pretty brutal.

Yeah, this new material is going to be the most brutal Pestilence material ever.  It’s going to top all our music.  There will be some shred of evidence that we enjoy listening to fusion and jazz, so in that regard, there’s a little bit of Spheres going there.  Again, we just want to stay true to the Pestilence formula, like you said.  We’re not a formula band, but we like to keep some things steady in our style.  Also, if you look back at our albums, no album sounds alike.  So this album will be, again, way different form Resurrection Macabre, but it will be the most brutal album, definitely.

Excellent.  I really look forward to that.  Do you have any ideas for a release date, or would it be too soon to say?

Well, we’re recording in September, and the release is somewhere in February next year.

That’s great news.  I’m glad to hear that.

Yeah, it’s good news, and I’m so happy with this new lineup.  I got a great drummer, a great bass player.  You know, Jeroen [Paul Thesseling], he’s played in Pestilence before, for the Spheres album.  He also plays with Obscura, so, very good bass player.  I’m very happy with the new guys.

Excellent.  What’s going on with C-187?  Are you still doing anything with that band?

No.  That was a project and, well, you know…it didn’t really go that well.  I mean, I think we sold 2,000 copies or something.  I think it was marketed really wrong, because I think that album deserved so much more than that, than what we’ve got, you know, just selling 2,000 copies.  That’s not a lot.  But, it was a great time recording with Sean Reinert from Cynic, and the other guys, and we had a blast.  I think that we tried to create something new, but, hey, when people think of me, they probably think of Pestilence.  That’s just the way it is.  You know, we just have to make sure that we conserve the madness.  I mean, it’s something that we really enjoyed doing, we all, so, yeah.  But like I said, expectations sometimes [are] so high.  It’s very difficult to deliver the goods.

I check for news, reviews and that sort of thing.  I saw something from March, something Pestilence-related, and it looks like you had actually gotten on there and posted some things yourself.

Yeah, that sometimes happens when I, um, when I had a few drinks.  That’s why I don’t want to go on Blabbermouth anymore.  It’s like, people can ventilate so much crap.  I think I am one of the few guys in the death metal industry that has the balls to go on there and say something back.  Because I think that, you know, it is so wrong for people to use a nickname, and kind of hide behind that nickname, and just ventilate crap.  Let’s face it: musical taste, it cannot be defined.  It’s something that is inside of you, and that’s just it.  Some people like the color blue, some people like the color red, some people, purple.  But, you know, don’t bash anybody.  People are bashing each other, and sometimes it kind of gets to me, because it’s like my child.  Pestilence is my band, it’s my music, and then when somebody just says crap– for whatever reason, because they dislike me so much that they have to do that — then sometimes I just have to respond.  Maybe it’s not very professional, but I feel like, sometimes, you have to do that.  You just have to do that.  Sometimes I can’t stop or help myself.  Yeah, you tell me.  I don’t know why I do it.  It’s just like, crazy.  It’s almost like somebody’s saying some crap about your mom or dad, and that’ll totally freak you out.  And most of the time, these people don’t even know what they’re saying, but they can hide behind that nickname and they go for it.  I just have to say, if you don’t like to listen to Pestilence, or just want to bash it, start your own band.  Play that instrument, and make that album that you want to listen to, and then you listen to that stuff all day, every day.  And then you’ll find out when somebody else says shit about your band, how that feels.

It’s annoying, but it’s amusing at the same time.

A: Oh, yeah.  And what it does, if I post some comments, you’ll see the views go up.  Then the thread’s like, 40 or 50 hits or something.  Then people go again, and they think it’s interesting.  I mean, even negativity helps, you know?  Because if somebody sees, ‘Wow, this one had already 40 hits,’ they’ll check it.  For some reason, people bash.  It’s funny, too, I guess; I don’t know why people do that.  That’s just the way it is.  Back in the old days, I guess you would buy a magazine and that was it.  Now everybody can post under a nickname, and then say something.  And it starts to get a life of its own.

Back in 2007, a friend of mine and I went to this festival in Chicago called Chicago Powerfest.  Atheist played, Lethal, Novembers Doom…a bunch of other bands.  It was a two-day thing.  Anyway, after the first night, there was a party in the hotel across the street from the venue, and that’s where all the bands were staying.  We were hanging out, and Kelly Shaefer and Steve Flynn were there from Atheist, and there were a bunch of other people.  Somebody said, ‘Let’s play some music,’ so I ran back to the hotel room, and I grabbed my copy of Testimony of the Ancients and popped that in, and it was just like euphoria.  Kelly Shaefer [said something to the effect of], ‘Wow, I haven’t heard this in a really long time; that’s some great stuff!’  To me, it was really cool being a fan; I just thought that was a really cool thing.

Wow, that is pretty cool, especially that me and Kelly go way back, and we had our misunderstanding, our bad blood, stuff like that.  For him to go there and say that, that’s just so cool.  That’s awesome!  When you are in a band, making history, you don’t feel it that way.  It’s just your music, you know.  But we would have the same, if we would put on an old Possessed album, or something like that.  It’d be like, ‘Oh wow, I haven’t heard that in so long; that’s awesome.’  And, you know, that’s a big compliment, what you just said.  That’s just great.  That’s awesome to hear.

I was really obsessed with that album at the time, and I was playing it every day for a month, so I thought, ‘Hey, let’s check this out,’ and everybody dug it.  It was cool.

Well, thank you very much for that.  That was awesome.

No, I should say thank you very much for that, because that is by far one of my favorite death metal albums of all times, and for that experience to ever happen was totally mind-blowing to somebody like me.  So, thank you.

Wow.  Thank you so much for the compliment.  That’s awesome.

[ Visit Pestilence’s website ]

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  1. Commented by: Erik Thomas

    Nicely done Jodi

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