NEW INTERVIEW: Our first interview with MATIANAK (Chicago, IL., USA Black Metal Band), 28/2/2017
Kieran James (Busuk Chronicles): Hi, can you tell me the early history from the formation of the band up to now?
Arelys Jimenez (female vocalist): Greetings! I have been trying to form my own black metal band for many years now. Finally got it to happen! It started by the end of 2014, with a complete different line-up which I was contacted from a post I had on craigslist looking for members and we were called Enochian Ritual. I felt the band was not progressing as I wanted to be. I told them it is best to depart ways as I pursue what I am looking for in creating this band. I went through a few line-up changes from members moving out of state, wanting to focus on their own project, or simply work-related interference. Now we are back with a full line up and new band name “Matianak” (which is an Indonesian folklore witch that died from stillbirth.) The band now consists of 2 guitarists, bass player, drummer, and me on vocals and I hope that there are no changes again so that I can continue this project.
KJ2: You sent me two songs which I think are excellent (see further comments below). How many songs have you got and what are your plans for a demo / album / EP?
ANSWER: Thank for digging our wicked tunes. Right now we have 5 complete songs and a 6th song that we are currently working on at the moment. We did give out demos at our first show that consist of 4 of our songs. We are looking at recording by the end of this year to release our first album by 2018.
KJ3: What are the most influential bands for you guys in playing music?
ANSWER: We all have our own influences in different styles and Genres. The main bands I feel impacted me the most to inspire me to create Matianak are Emperor, Watain, Nattefrost (Carpathian Forest), Anaal Nathrakh, Taake, Naglfar, Wardruna, Dark Funeral, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Limbonic Art, Dark Fortress, and the list can go on and on.
KJ4: What are your future plans and dreams for the band?
ANSWER: Wherever the band leads us, we will follow. I am not aiming to be famous. My only goal for this band is to be able to express, perform, and give out the wicked/evilest/disturbing show we can possibly give. We get into the minds of the psychotic. We definitely look forward to touring other states and hopefully get to play big shows in other countries alongside with our inspirational bands. I am working on making bone jewelry to sell as merch. Getting some clothing to sell as well. We also want to release not only CD’s but cassette tapes and Vinyl’s along the road.
KJ5: How many shows have you played and what has the support and response been like? Where have you played shows?
ANSWER: We have played a total of 2 shows. Our first one was at the fallout. Not my favorite of places to play a show since it is basically like an empty room and that’s pretty much it. We had an incredible good turnout besides one of our guitarist’s breaking a string for the first song. I felt everyone enjoyed us and our free demos were all taken. I had a total of 20 free demos. Our second show was at livewire. That show was probably the best by far, amazing crowd and even got to meet people that came to the show strictly to just see us perform. I saw the crowd pretty entertained as they will either be frightened, disturbed, or really enjoying our performance. I did look pretty creepy after all, so I figured some will be a little spooked. Our fan base is growing quickly at almost 3,000 likes and followers on our facebook page. We are going to be playing 3 more shows lined up for this year 2017. We are very excited to be back on stage after line-up changes delayed us.
KJ6: What are the lyrical themes?
ANSWER: I focus on the most disturbing, f***ed up, and crazy shit I can find out there. They are all based on realistic events. Our first song, “The last cry” is about my old neighbor who was an 87 year old grandmother who cut the throat of her 7 month old granddaughter with a power saw to end her crying. She then attempted to kill herself but failed. Second song, “Domesticated Sacrifice” is about a lady that came into my job holding a paper bag. She kept saying the white witches from the Roman Catholic Church killed her cat. Satan killed her cat. The white witches beat it to death. Inside the paper bag she was holding was a dead cat wrapped in plastic and lace inside. The third song, “The woman in a white dress” is basically what Matianak is about. A folklore witch woman dressed in white dies from stillbirth and victimizes men to destroy and kill them out of her rage and pain. Our 4th song, “Touch of silence” is about a lady who sold a deep freezer wrapped in chains on craiglist but inside was the remains of her dead mother. Apparently, the mom died naturally and the daughter might have freaked out. She most likely had a mental illness. Our 5th song, “Hypnotic Torture” is about the serial killer David Parker Ray a.k.a Toy box killer. He plays this very disturbing recording of himself to his kidnapped victims; it even made me grossed out.
KJ7: Why do you like to play black / death-metal instead of simply one or the other?
ANSWER: I am focusing more on just the black metal sound but I can see how there is some blackened/death mix in our music. We are trying to create a unique sound to the Genre. I feel the band will be more interesting and less boring if there’s a variation of components, style, and range. If it all sounds the same, then I feel I failed for the creative aspects. We are not just some band making noise. We are creating art and I want our fans to feel and see it as well.
KJ8: What are the best and worst things about the metal community in your city Chicago?
ANSWER: The best part is that the metal community is big we are all like family. Everyone knows each other as well. We have so many metal venues and metal bars as well. The metal scene is huge here. The bad part about it is if people see you play multiple times within the city I feel people less care to come and support you. I feel people are starting not to care as much for shows like it used to with packed sold out shows. Also, the scene is very picky and is not open to going to different genres of shows. Death metal fans stick with death metal shows. Black metal fans stick with just black metal shows. Local shows are nothing unless a big headliner comes. In my experience, that is what I have been seeing. People need to equally support all types of metal not just stick to one genre and be ignorant. I try to come out and support the best I can. Yeah, I know some bands are not the greatest and not all will like the same bands but at least respect and support unless they ask for it…then by all means…
KJ9: Do you know about Chicago Death Metal band Morgue Supplier and Panama City, Florida Black Metal band Lustravi? We were fortunate to be able to interview both bands because of our long-standing association with Corey Athos of Obscure Musick USA…
ANSWER: I have heard of Morgue Supplier but not the rest of the bands. I am always open to check out new music.
KJ10: What are your most memorable shows or experiences onstage?
ANSWER: I say Livewire was our best show. This random kid kept handing me books and magazines. I have the not the slightest idea why. These two gals that I never met in my life came to the show just to see my band. I was very flattered and honored to have people come out that never knew us before and just to see us. They became my awesome good friends now. I also had fellow coworkers come out to see us perform. They don’t know much about the genre but knowing they came out anyways to support meant a lot to me.
KJ11: Did you hear any Indonesian Black Metal bands? Some good ones are Immortal Rites, Grim Infernus, Sereignos, Diabolical, and Blasphemer.
ANSWER: Oh yes! Definitely. I love bands from other countries the most. I am not really big into U.S bands but I do enjoy some that has met my standards in taste. I look for unique, creative, evil sound when it comes to bands.
KJ12: Have you got any message for the fans?
ANSWER: Our music will possess you! We get into the minds of the psychotic, the insane, and the evil to present you Matianak.
KJ13: Ok, here is one for debate – Christian Black Metal – does it have a right to exist?
ANSWER: Honestly, NO! It shouldn’t exist. It is completely opposite and a joke on what black metal is. “Metal is evil and the devil’s music” is what religious folks say. So why now are they contradicting themselves in trying to make a Genre of what they oppose? It doesn’t make any sense. It’s like “Hey! I don’t like eating anchovies, they are gross, disgusting, and makes me want to throw up, but all the cool kids are eating it so I am going to eat it too and hopefully I be popular and cool too. Pfft….Morons! Let’s rebuild the church the mean kids burnt down and make a song about how awesome God is. Yay! Our sins will be saved!
KJ14: OK, thank you very much and I really enjoyed your songs. The Black and Death vocals work very well. I am more into Traditional, Thrash, and Power Metal but there is enough variety and good songwriting in your songs for me to stick my teeth into, and the clear production is a positive in my view. You don’t just blast-beat us into oblivion, there is a sense of purpose in there.
ANSWER: I am assuming this is not a question but just complementing our music. Thank you so much for reaching out. It is a great honor! Yes, we are not just blast beats and grunts and look at me. Every piece of what makes us a band is what we want to show. Evil riffs, evil stage presence of real animal bones and disturbing lyrical content is what makes Matianak. We represent a whole new look and style to black metal – a creative yet disturbing balance. We are not just noise. We are Matianak.
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