The Black Planet had the opportunity to interview two members of Di.Soul.Ved, a newgrindcore supergroup that is taking the portuguese underground scene by storm, Pedro Pedra and Hugo Silva, the project mentor. This is what they had to say:
- For the ones who haven’t heard of you… Who are Di.Soul.Ved?
Pedra – Well me and Hugo Silva have known each other from a long time ago and we are good friends even before DOWNTHROAT existed so the time came to do something together and we talked about it. We aimed to do something that would surpass the normal speed of extreme music and that was the beginning of DI.SOUL.VED. Later, we talked about the persons we would like to play with and I personally think that the options were pretty obvious since we wanted to gather the most influent musicians we knew upon the Portuguese Grindcore spectre, not mentioning the fact we are all friends for years and get along very well. So its quiet easy to understand why, besides us, Hugo Andremon, José Marreiros, Rolando Barros and Simão Santos have teamed up with us to create the physical dimension of DI.SOUL.VED!
Hugo – I told Pedra that it took more than being a good musician to be a part of this project, you’d need that special something. I was looking for musicians that played and listened to this genre, and that were able to understand it completely. I needed musicians with experience. So, according to it, it became easy to find the names we were looking for.
- How did the idea of starting this project came up?
Hugo – Like Pedra told before, were just a group of old friends that decided to do something. I had a lot of stuff written, but I didn’t have any particular idea of what to do with it, just a distant possibility for the future, where I’d release a solo work. The songs were written, the tabs were complete and I even had a few lyrics in mind, all I needed was that final push to make things going, so that’s where Pedra decided to show up and challenged me to do something real with it.
Pedra – Like always I have to be the responsible for something. Major bummer!!!
- Some have already labled Di.Soul.Ved as a “super group” of the portuguese grindcore scene. How does that label make you feel?
Pedra – It’s natural to be labeled as that when all of we have the musical curriculum you know but then again we are not a super whatever you may call it and above all we don’t wish to be anything close to that. The best way to support this is the fact that Hugo Silva is the main responsible for writing all music and lyrics. In fact this is one man band and the rest of the 5 are guests in this global experience. So, all in all, we have 1 mastermind and 5 parasites to be more accurate (laughs)!
Hugo – We’re 6 guys that have a lot of years of grind on our backs, and a deep knowledge of the “scene”, so I think it’s natural that label would show up. It doesn’t give us any extra pressure honestly, I don’t feel it.
- What can we expect from your debut release? Do you already have a date lined up for that?
Hugo – It’s going to be released in December and you can expect grindcore. There’s not much more to add. Its 30 minutes with no room to breathe, basically.
Pedra – We hope to see the album out till the end of the year so let’s see what happens.
- Why did you chose the track “Dark Balance” to present your project?
Pedra – Well Dark Balance has all the musical elements we relate to DI.SOUL.VED from groove, to Death Metal and Grindcore, from simple to extreme beats, so I guess it’s a fair band sonic ID.
Hugo – It was also a track that pleased everyone involved, and that’s very important. Just like Pedra said, it’s a fine example of what you can expect from the album.
- Let’s talk about the artwork. Who designed it? Is there any theme/concept being explored in the record?
Hugo – The entire concept was designed by PN (drummer for Downthroat). I sent him the lyrics from the tracks and he was able to understand perfectly what I was trying to ay. It was an idea that came along in quite a natural way, there was almost no need whatsoever to make adjustments to the first idea he sent us. He‘d already designed our logo, so it’s easy to see why he was the first person I thought about to be in charge to design and create all of it. I like the way we works, and the fact that he’s able to understand this kind of genre is also of importance. The title is completely explicit about the lyrical themes, they are confessions of the soul, some more personal, others more abstract, but deep down show the spiritual mood of a man in his self as a part of the universe, subject to pressures and influences around him.
Pedra – Just want thank PN for the awesome art work. You kick ass dude!!!
7. Can you describe your creative and writing process?
Pedra – Hugo Silva is the master mind behind all that. I will let him speak about this…
Hugo – I’ve started answering that in a previous question. This time, the writing process of the music and lyrics were my doing. They were already written a long time ago, I just had to dust them off a drawer and record. The lyrics were adapted to fit in the chosen tracks. Everything is almost in exclusive my ideas, but in the future the goal is to open the door to other band member’s contribution. I believe that in this project I’ll always be the main composer, but if in my opinion, I’m working with the best 5 portuguese musicians in this genre, it makes all the sense that they contribute actively to this project. This time everything was already done before the start, next time it will surely be different.
- Do you believe that your previous experience, and the fact that you are well known in the underground scene, will influence the reception this project will have?
Hugo – It will, at least arise some curiosity. It’s normal that’ll happen, because we have that “super group” label on our heads. But I don’t think people will say that it’s good, even if they don’t think it is, just because we’re well known in this genre. We hope to please every lover of extreme music, but not because they’re familiar with our work in other bands.
Pedra – In Di.soul.ved you won’t hear a personal blast from the past, but you will recognize our grind DNA as experienced individuals in this type of music.
- In the last couple of years grindcore has been the “trending style” in Portugal, as you can see with the creation and the increasing popularity of certain bands and events. Do you think this is something that’s going to last?
Pedra – You think so? Sincerely I don’t agree with your point of view. Yes it’s true that the Grindcore culture has assembled in the last years a lot of new faces and support but to be considered hype is a completely different thing. Maybe people relate themselves much more now with the Grindcore social awareness and freedom of speech/self point of view, but that always existed, it’s nothing new as a matter of a fact. Grindcore remains pretty underground despite the commercial outbreak, people still play it, promote it and release it for its emblematic vibration! I think that we are facing a healthy evolution of the Portuguese Grindcore/extreme music scene, we have good bands and some decent conditions to organize events along with some fair promoters, so I would say that we are facing a 10 year consolidation period within all this novelty issue and only afterwards we can really see where we are globally and locally wise not only Grindcore but also the Heavy Metal scene.
Hugo – I agree with Pedra. For us, that we’re in the scene for so many years, as musicians and listeners, it’s not a fashion statement, it’s just our favourite genre. There are more listeners of this kind of music style, and more promoters betting on the genre, but I don’t think it’s because of that. Actually, I really hope that it won’t become a fashion to like and listen to grind and similar genres!
Pedra – Yes Hugo, you’re absolutely right, grind doesn’t rhyme or even mingles with fashion or hype but if that would happen that would mean we would be in a deep shit situation concerning extreme music. Fuck that!!!
- When will your first gig take place? Will it be before the festival XXXAPADA Open Air?
Hugo – It depends on the opportunities will be presented with. When they arise, will be ready for them, you can be sure of it, but we’re not going to be a band that plays live very often. Given the experience we all have, one of the premise was that we were only goin to accept proposals to play live when all the demands were met. We’re not going to play in exchange for dinner, with a dubious working sound and PA, or in places lacking some basic conditions, that’s for sure. When our demands are met, we’re playing.