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Deathbus | Interview


Evolving out of a joke tape of noise with various hand drawn covers, Belfast’s Deathbus have evolved into a crusty crossover act who have been a feature at the Warzone Centre, and have toured quite a bit.

They’ve just released a 7′ split with Scottish thrashers Daniel Wax Off – so Chris Owens caught up with band members John (drums), Eddie (guitar) and Alessandro (guitar) to find out a bit more about them.

***

The group emerged out of a joke tape. Tell us how that happened.

John: We all started off as friends so from there we just decided to fuck about and write some stupid songs. We actually have hundreds of tracks all from before the band properly started, the joke tape was basically just a compilation of shite.

Our intention for starting the band was simply to just make music, play loads of gigs and party the whole time doing it! We just went with it and seen what happened.

Alessandro: When we started, we were unsure about our sound and it took us a while to find what direction we were looking for. When we eventually decided on what to do, we stuck at it and have continued to write with similar influences.

We actually call our sound “Crustover Thrash” and we think it perfectly describes it.

Tell us about the tours you’ve embarked on.

Alessandro: Our first tour was a weekender in April 2016 with Basque bands Mutilated Judge and Shrapnel Meat. They messaged our page asking if we could help them with dates in Ireland.

The organisation for the tour was insane, with the Dublin venue Tenterhooks cancelling last minute due to disagreements with the bands content.

In the end the tour was a success anyways and they asked us to come back and do an Iberian tour that following August. It was insane, two weeks playing across Catalonia, Basque Country, Galicia and Valencia.

The people and venues over there are crazy, nearly every show was packed out and every promoter treated us so well, giving us a place to stay plus food, beer, money etc.

Probably the most memorable date of the tour was in a small town called Benissa where we played an abandoned high school that had been turned into a DIY venue run by a collective called Coŀlectiu Baix Terra, absolute mayhem that was.

We ended up organizing another tour with Mutilated Judge and toured the UK with them from April 14th-22nd.

How did that go?

Alessandro: It was really cool! We started in Belfast, went to Scotland then travelled down to England and eventually finishing in the famous Temple of Boom in Leeds.

Overall it was an insane tour, loads of great shows even if all of them weren’t completely packed out. We some seriously great people along the way as well, and in general we were treated incredibly well by the promoters and bands.

Only one show we played was a disaster, which was organised by a University student in Epsom who obviously had fuck all idea what she was doing because not a single person showed up. But apart from that, pretty much perfect!

How do the scenes differ in places like that from Belfast / Dublin?

Alessandro: Although the first tour was only for 2 weeks, it seems like there is a lot more dedication and respect than the Irish scene. Many of our shows were midweek and they still brought loads of people.

Some fans even travelled from a town called Vigo that we played to Bilbao to see a street festival we were meant to play (which was cancelled because of the police), that is a 8-10 hour car journey.

People also were just super friendly, they all wanted to talk with us after the gigs and also managed to out party us on multiple occasions!

Overall there just seems to be more thriving scenes all across the country, even in the smallest towns we played. Surprisingly good!

Like I said, not every show was packed out but everyone who came seemed to really enjoy us. Although we have a good following around Belfast, our only venture in Dublin was useless.

It seems that in Dublin people only want to see their mates bands or want to see bigger bands playing. We would love to play there again to see if it is different but from experience people just don’t care enough to turn up.

On the recent tour we did have some big turn outs, especially in Edinburgh, Bristol and Leeds where loads of people showed up and went nuts. But overall the audiences on the tour were great!

So what would be your take on the current state of the Irish scene?

Eddie: The Irish scene is fucking brilliant i really think there is something special going on a few of my favourite bands would be Hollow Truth, Disconnect, Unyielding Love, Strangle Wire, The Crawling, Zombified, Psykosis, Animator, Scimitar!

I could go on for days and we have some loyal fans from outside of Ireland who think the same.

I was lucky to have started out and get asked to join Acid Age who were one of my favourite bands at the time when we started Wardomized and those guys really took me under their wing and introduced me to a lot of the happenings regarding the scene bands and venues and promoters etc.

I think the scene however is divided at times between the hardcore/thrash and death metal which is quite sad cause its all good some bands need to support each other more

Why do you think there is a divide?

Eddie: Some hardcore bands wont play shows with some of the other thrash bands maybe Ale can put input to that statement too.

Alessandro: I think people find it hard to have a variety sometimes, and many bands end up only playing certain venues or certain line ups. I think it is also down to promoters, although most of Belfast’s promoters are great people have to learn to try and give more variety to bills.

It keeps everything fresh and also introduces bands from different scenes to a wider audience.

There seems to be a significant divide at times between the hardcore and Thrash scene which is a shame because if united it would be a much stronger scene.

Eddie: Yeah we will play with any band in the scene no judgement there

You’re associated with the Warzone Centre. How crucial is it to Deathbus?

Eddie: Well the Warzone has gave a space for many bands to start out I say its crucial to every band here, its definitely a lot more crucial to Deathbus than other venue and our best shows in NI have been there

Alessandro: Without the centre Deathbus would’ve never had the opportunities we have today. It was the first venue in Belfast we played and have continued to play throughout the past couple of years.

The support from the collective and fans from the Warzone has been overwhelming and we hope to continue playing it as much as possible.

A while ago, you mentioned you were fed up with people taking the piss out of the Belfast scene. Can you elaborate on this?

Alessandro: In Belfast there seems to be a lot of people with huge mouths and very little to no actual interest in the scene. I’ve heard so many people run their mouths about local bands and venues then show up the next week to a gig just to get pissed and its really not on.

The majority of bands and promoters in Belfast are doing this because they love it and its a lot of work being in a band and running shows, there is a lot more than people see that goes into it.

So for some fucker to spread shit around just because they have nothing else to do really isn’t on.

From the perspective of someone who plays in hardcore and black metal bands, why do you think there is this mentality amongst some in Belfast?

Alessandro: I think people are just seriously big headed and think they can say what they want. Also, it seems once one person says something people just tend to follow along.

In this day and age social media is very influential, so once one thing is said online it can really grow to be something a lot bigger.

Its really hard to pinpoint the actual reason why some people hate the scene so much, I guess they just have some underlining hatred for good music!

Tell us about your other bands.

Eddie: I do vocals for Acid Age and guitar in Wardomized both thrash bands Wardomized leaning more towards death metal we have a new EP on the way with our new line up. Me, Ale and John also have a grindcore side project called Necrofuck, and we toured Spain doing about 7 shows playing a 5 minute set!

Mid-late next year we will hopefully be bringing it back for an album.

Alessandro: Me and John are also in a few projects, most notably Neamhní, an old school black metal band. We have been playing for a year now and have an EP launch for our first release on the 24th March in Voodoo.

We also have a couple of other projects lined up for next year but for now our focus is Deathbus and Neamhní. The band was started purely for fun because all four of us really loved black metal and it just became something more very quickly.

We just got announced as main support for Possessed so we’re super excited for that plus we have some more recorded material planned in the coming months!

What did you make of Earl Grey’s remark that you reminded him of B-War from Marduk?

Alessandro: Gave me a good laugh! Not sure it would go down well with the Antifa crowd though.

-Interview by Christopher Owens ::: 24/05/17


26 Comments
  1. These boys are a total fucking joke. Absolute worthless shite, maybe that’s why they’re not taken seriously. “Deathbus”, says it all really. Getting up on stage with a few mates and some instruments does not equal being part of a music scene.

  2. ale ur a fucking legend

  3. El Morte Says:

    I’ve had the pleasure of watching these boys grow from a terrible, crossover-Trash Dirge to a Crossover-Trash Dirge.
    Long may they reign.

  4. is there a contest running for how many shit bands you can be in at once or something?

  5. Known these guys since around the time Deathbus started, I’ve been to their first gigs and many after that. They’ve definitely earned a reputation as a serious local band and have fun while doing it.
    I have a cassette with loads of their first ‘songs’, it’s a load of shit but fun to listen to sometimes.

  6. Even though it started as a joke they’ve become pretty big in the local scene. Just wish they wouldn’t use most of their gigs as a chance for a pissup and take some time to really develop their sound because at the minute its quite ear-rapey

  7. spiceman Says:

    rock on spicy boys

  8. zachburnett Says:

    anyone criticising these guys for their style or demeanour whilst performing clearly doesnt understand what their trying to achieve. Brutally fun music by brutally fun guys who have done an insane amount for the local scene – keep it up.

  9. straight from the horses arse Says:

    shame on the people of dublin

  10. This band are the worst thing I’ve seen. They play the warzone every weekend (usually drunk out of their heads and out of time) then scrounge around looking for free weed off their “mates”
    The drummer has potential but the rest of the band are either drunk or maybe just retarded.

  11. Jude Milk Says:

    Great read lads, keep it up. The last stuff you released is great, sounds like a cross between Ghoul and Toxic Holocaust to me.
    Loving the direction and glad to see more bands speaking up about the keyboard warriors (good job Ale)

  12. Guys i dont even drink

  13. dude my car iw gone Says:

    Keep it up dudes love your sound

  14. lmao

  15. I'm shagging the drummers girlfriends boyfriend but not the drummer himself but actually the guy who is shagging him Says:

    This is getting out of hand

  16. Teresa Mary pishflaps Says:

    I prefer the gritty early stuff about teenage erections.

  17. Aye we still play that shite dont you worry

  18. straight from the horses arse Says:

    @Eddie he said, drunk or maybe just retarded

  19. Hope forlorn hope gets explosive diahrea before his next rage fest Says:

    Some bullshit about hating everything in life and some other wanking bollocks. You lads would probably look at a newborn puppy and criticise it for not being metal enough.

  20. Sluggin For Jesus Says:

    Hello Ianthebassist.

  21. Emphyrio Says:

    Good to see the spastic brigade is out in force again.

  22. Eoin McLove Says:

    Yep. Seriously funny shit.

  23. Jesus is watching Says:

    IP saved into the database, I’m honoured. I see yis haven’t changed a bit. I suppose you’ll all gather round the metal elitist circle later on and jerk off to all your amazing slaggings on all those memorable threads? Other people get nostalgia from movies and music, you guys get it from patting yourselves on the back in a chat room. Try a change and get some Huey Lewis or some Earth wind and fire on your speakers. Yis might not be such hateful bastards then.

  24. Tony Danza Says:

    Jude should probably stop playing guitar. I know he’s not in deathbus, but i feel you’ve caught his cancer, like some sort of common cold

  25. My god you think highly of yourself much ? Reason why the Belfast scene is shit is coz you all were still in nappies when if was at its peak & what fucking business is it of yours if people go out to get drunk at shows the warzone is basically a squat for liberals only & let’s underage teenagers drink in it ..biggest shower of hypocrites ever that place .. As for your band make up your mind wtf you are changes monthly 😀

  26. Ivan Drago Says:

    Is that really Ianthebassist? The same lad who was so against internet trolls?

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