Interview: Desekryptor (2024) | From The Bowels Of Perdition

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What are your earliest memories related to music?

P.A.: My older brother is several years older than me, so whatever he was getting into I listened to as well. Mostly typical hard rock stuff. We collected some crappy garage sale instruments and grew up messing around with those a lot.

How old were you when you first got in touch with metal and do you remember what about it appealed to you so much?

P.A.: My brother and his friends would make tape comps a lot ˗ mostly terrible ˗ but one in particular had Slayer’s “Jesus Saves” nestled in the middle. I was probably about ten when I first heard that and I remember thinking, not knowing their history or influences, that they were making this maniacal music in a vacuum somehow. It had a superhuman quality, like I couldn’t imagine anyone being able to play like that. Of course, context changes that somewhat today, but the immediate gut reaction to a riff is what I still find appealing.

Do you collect records?

P.A.: I do.

Have you bought anything particularly valuable recently?

P.A.: I recently ran across an old Roadrunner pressing of Bulldozer’s “The Day of Wrath” at a local thrift store. Got it for about half of what it’s worth. The media’s definitely a near mint, sounds like it’s hardly been played. Someone probably bought it because the band pic is sick but they couldn’t hang with the music.

How do you explain that “Vortex Oblivion”, as a debut album, exhibits so much finesse and sounds so seasoned?

P.A.: Eric and I both record on a regular basis with various bands and came into “Vortex Oblivion” with a pretty clear vision of how we wanted it to sound. Some arduous demoing went into the writing phase, so finally executing it was the easy part.

Was the album named after the eponymous song, or was that song named after the album?

P.A.: Some titles come about as a sort of summation of the lyrics, and other times a little piece of imagery or a phrase will inform the content. I actually came up with the album title “Vortex Oblivion” early on and it stuck. It aligned with how we imagined the record would sound, and eventually it inspired some lyrics so that became the song as well.

Did you go with this cover because of its aesthetic appeal, or because you felt the image communicated a certain message?

P.A.: We were hunting for artists online and ran across that particular piece. We knew we wanted something a little off the beaten path, not your typical death metal cover. The paranoia and brutality of it really clicked with us right away.

Is the fact that all the songs on “Vortex Oblivion” have their own independent identity somethings that makes the album come across as consistent or inconsistent?

P.A.: I worried a bit about the album becoming too inconsistent because we demoed for so long between extended breaks. Eventually, many of the older riffs were tweaked and adapted to make more sense in the new context of the song, and we did focus quite a bit of attention at the end on making sure certain songs had their own unique nuances and identity ˗ “Nervegas Crematorium” comes to mind.

Does it usually take long before you realise that you have written a half-cooked, mediocre riff and discard it, or do you tend to dwell on them for too long before realising that?

P.A.: I think we know pretty quickly whether a riff is gonna work. We’re both pretty critical of our own riffs, and are honest to each other when something isn’t working.

Are you able to detach yourself from the experience of making “Vortex Oblivion” and enjoy it impartially, the way you would enjoy a solid album by any other band?

P.A.: For me, definitely not yet. I still hear things in the mix that could’ve been better, or I think should have been changed. The neuroses of recording.

Although that probably changes daily, which “Vortex Oblivion” song are you currently the most satisfied with?

P.A.: “Abysmal Resurrection” was deconstructed and put back together and probably evolved the most. I like how far we pushed it. “Nervegas Crematorium” is satisfying in a different way because we executed exactly what we set out to. How we played it on early demos is pretty much how we ended up recording it.

Desekryptor Interview 2024 (Vortex Oblivion)

What was your frame of mind while writing “Vortex Oblivion”, what were you listening to, what were you thinking about?

P.A.: Since it did span a few years on and off, the short answer is lots of stuff. Mainstays like Immolation, Incantation, Carcass are always there, but we also discussed “play this more like such and such band” or “a more Diocletian-sounding guitar” and other vague musical cues. Lyrically, I was pondering humans evolving from mythmakers to religious zealots and Armageddon as self-fulfilling prophecy. What the concept of art would mean in a state of inevitable impending extinction.

Would you say that the things you stand for in your private life and your personal philosophy often bleed through into your lyrics on some level?

P.A.: Of course, the way I relate to and perceive the world around me can’t be escaped when writing, but lyrics are also an exercise in exploring an idea to its most extreme outcome, existing somewhere between the embellishment of a lyrical concept and a true 1:1 reflection of personal philosophy.

Given its undeniable familiarity with many of the genre’s pillars, would it be fair to say that your music seeks to embrace the past in order to eventually transcend it?

P.A.: Yes, we’re trying to create a similar listening experience to the bands we revere, not necessarily to transcend them, but to elicit the same power and brutality.

Could you think of any artists or bands that influenced you more with their philosophy and approach to music than with the actual music?

P.A.: Because Desekryptor’s process can at times be a little convoluted and over-analytical, I appreciate the spontaneity and emotional emphasis of raw black metal like Vlad Tepes and Mütiilation, even if it doesn’t inspire me much musically.

Is it possible to capture the very essence of Desekryptor by combining three different traits from three different bands?

P.A.: Incantation’s ability to combine elements of death and black metal without being too obvious or trying too hard, Immolation’s compositional twists and turns, and Portal’s unpredictability.

Is death metal at its finest more about power, grit and urgency, or about technical proficiency?

P.A.: Technical proficiency in and of itself doesn’t elicit the intended response. Being in awe of the hours someone spent on scales or sweep picking is not the same as being physically moved by a devastating riff.

What are some of the albums that never really leave your rotation?

P.A.: For me, Incantation’s “Onward to Golgotha” and Immolation’s “Dawn of Possession” are all-time favorites. So many potent riffs and inspired playing.

Do you feel that “Vortex Oblivion” set you on the right course, that the band is heading in the right direction, and that now you just need to keep on moving in that direction?

P.A.: The EP we recorded after “Vortex Oblivion” ˗ “Curse of the Execrated” came out first but was actually recorded after the album ˗ has a similar spirit but ventures off in a somewhat different, more obscure direction. The EP we’re working on now is probably some of our heaviest, most immediate material to date.

Do you like to think that an average Desekryptor fan is an open-minded person with a broad taste in music or a narrow-minded fanatic?

P.A.: I would imagine most of our fans probably listen to metal primarily, but it’s none of my business if someone cleanses their pallet with some sappy bullshit.

Does the stock metal bands have in the underground diminish whenever their global popularity increases?

P.A.: If you’re referring to their stock as the quality of their output, then probably more often than not, but it depends. Malokarpatan’s latest record is a masterpiece and I assume they’re at the height of their global popularity. If you’re referring to how the underground metal community at large perceives them as their stock, that’s not something we’re concerned with or care about.

When a certain classic band’s music has too many obvious references to their own previous work, can you tolerate that repetitiveness if you are a fan of that previous work?

P.A.: Obviously, if it’s a band you like your tolerance is higher for that sort of thing. Bolt Thrower have essentially continued recording the same record for years but I love that record. Revenge is another band where you know what to expect but they always deliver.

Is the only authentic art the one that comforts the disturbed and disturbs the comfortable, as the old saying has it, or should art be capable of entertaining and providing escapism as well?

P.A.: Art requires something of me, requires me to alter my perception and meet it halfway. That’s not to say I don’t consume plenty of media that’s simply fun and exactly as expected, but ultimately it’s less valuable to me and my pursuits.

In terms of the surging technological development on the one hand and the inherent stupidity of mankind on the other, do you find the crossroad humanity seems to be at the moment fascinating or petrifying?

P.A.: In the grand scheme of things, humanity may be a small blip on the timeline. Another species could rise out of human ash and enjoy one hundred million years of success. It does feel like we’re at a precipice in the human story. Not sure I want to know what’s coming next.


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