In a single fortnight, almost ten years after their disbandment, Prog Thrash assault from Greece known as Acid Death finally felt the urge to come out of hiding and show to the world they are still Metal as ever! With the recent release of their fourth studio album, ‘Eidolon,’ they have proven this to be true. It combines all the elements of the band’s former works with a modern touch- something the Thrash fans of the times will love for sure. I got a chance to talk with vocalist/ bassist Sawas about the band’s reformation and a bit on the new album, which he was more than happy to discuss.
Hello from BRUTALISM and congrats on your reformation as well as a new album!
Hello everyone! Thank you, bro, for your good words! Yes, ACID DEATH is back and “Eidolon” is the new album!
So what has been going on all this time since the original disbandment in 2001 up till 2011? It’s been quite a gap of time…
Yes, we know that the gap was really big. Unfortunately the band stopped in just one night during October 2001, being in studio for making the pre-production of its 5th release…There were many problems- simple and serious at the same time those days- but most of all the feeling that the music that was important for us was gone. The decision was mine. After losing many hours in the studio for pre-production and seeing that nothing was working anymore I decided to stop the band. Dennis Kostopoulos (lead guitars) and I continued with other bands; I was playing in KINETIC for 10 years; Dennis was and still is in a Doom/Stoner band called INFIDEL. But ACID DEATH was in mind all these years… Having the first touches in 2009 and solving all the past problems we decided to re-start things and this happened in 2010, with 2 new members; Kostas Alexakis (drums, also drummer in KINETIC) and Kostas Gusk (guitars).
Was it easy to get back into the fold when reforming Acid Death? There are lots of new members apparently in the group since last checked…
It was easier than we thought! There are lots of new members that wanted to work in the band. In about one year we worked on the old songs and processed a complete album. Of course the band worked really hard but there was the most important thing that had the same value for all of us: music!
So what did you have in mind for your return when you wanted to re-announce Acid Death to the world again? Does ‘Eidolon’ accomplish that?
At first we wanted to make it clear to ourselves that “mistakes of past” have no place in here. The second was that the band has to remain on the same musical way- Progressive Death Metal- but of course by more of today’s standards. “Eidolon” was made by all of us and the first thought was “Ok, we are composing songs for a new album…we don’t want to have our mind in what today is ordering!” Things worked really fine and “Eidolon” is the continuation of “Random’s Manifest” and it sounds really fresh with the big 90s feeling that has always been in our blood and sound.
If one would compare ‘Eidolon’ to an album like your debut, ‘Pieces Of Mankind,’ would you say that your sound has been pretty consistent or is there a big difference?
Of course there is a big difference between “Pieces…” and “Random’s…” also. “Eidolon” is a more “direct” and “angry” one. It includes all the elements that both our previous albums had but in a more Death Metal way. I am sure that the fans that found the previous albums interesting will love this one and also everyone who never had the chance to hear something for us will find it cool!
Any significant tracks from the new album you’d like to discuss, either in meaning or how the songwriting process came about?
All the songs are “kids” of this team. We worked as a team; something that we didn’t have the chance to do in the past… Of course the people were different at that period. But in this case usually one of us had the basic idea of the song and all the others put their ideas on it. I dare say that it is a completely collective work, including all our personal influences and elements.
Over the years of being on hiatus lots of bands have come and gone- old and new. Have there been any recently that you really think made an impact on Acid Death or have you always tried to stick to being influenced by ‘only yourselves?’
I dare say that we tried to keep ourselves above everything but I know it is really hard to say such a thing. Of course many bands have come and gone. We were and always are into the scene by listening to music, following the entire scene, discovering new bands. As it happens to all musicians, we discovered new things that impressed us and we tried to put them in our music. I dare say we made it sound good while trying to keep all the elements that we had in our previous music, you know the jazzy/atmospheric parts, the “complex/strange” rhythm parts, etc. The trend of course is good but you have to be yourself most of all. And ACID DEATH was never a “trendy” band.
Do you think the things you created in the past- from sound to lyrics- would fit as easily in a modern music world today where the genre focus shifts every year it seems? At one point it is scream-o, the next deathcore, then thrash, etc… Is this sort of tumult demand hard to deal with or do you just forge your own path whether you think fans will like it or not for whatsoever reason…?
Yes, I know…I know that trends follow one to the other. But we are musicians, not “dressmakers”! All this panic about whatever the fans think its “trendy” is a game without meaning. Good music is the most important thing. I am sure that if someone listens to our previous albums today the first thought would be “Oh God!! What a boring kind of music!!” Ten years ago “Random’s Manifest” was the reason that most of the Greek fans thought that we were a “crazy team” that “tries to do…what??” Today that “Eidolon” has the same base sound but the feeling is different because the “Technical Death Metal” that we used to play 10 years ago is more “flexible” to some ears. No problem of course, but we still remain the same! You know it is very important for a band or artist to have its own identity and keep it over the years.
Speaking of reaching out to the world, any tours in the works? I’m sure old and new fans are hoping to get a glimpse of you on the road.
Yes, at first we are arranging our tour in Greece in October for 5-6 shows for promoting the new album in our country and the same time we are on the way to hit the doors for a slot to European festivals or a European tour. You know, there is a serious issue for us: we are coming from Greece. Greece has a really bad image in the eyes of all because of the entire political situation, so there is a kind of suspicion in the eyes of gig organizers…We hope that things will be in the right way soon.
When Acid Death returned (officially) what was the initial reaction? Were people pleased, annoyed that you’d been gone for so long, or was it kind of a dead calm to wait and see until an album was officially released?
Officially things started up in January 2010 in just one night as in just one night the band was stopped. Of course there was big works behind that night but things worked out fine! We never expected that we could find more fans that we left in 2001. The Internet worked really well for us all these past years. There were fans that discovered us after our death and were wondering if there will be any news from band’s camp… In any way we feel proud that we are back. And the trip will be really long this time!!
Has there been anything a fan(s) have said or done to really impact the return of Acid Death, either in the form of a letter or just a gesture of appreciation?
Till the moment we talked, not really. Everyone has a rather positive view of our return and there are many fans that are waiting for our next steps. We had some really bad examples in the past that really impressed us the 1999-2001 period, in a way like “Oh God they hate us!!” But till now, no problem! I was wondering many times, what went wrong with that season…We were never a band like “blah-blah-blah…” we were just on our way, away from any kind of intrigues and things like that… I still remember that 3 times our official site was down by hackers. We were receiving mails like “fuck you and stop this band!!”Anyway, all these now belong to the past.
That’s about all I have for now. Thanks again for your time!
Thank you too for this opportunity. ACID DEATH is back and “Eidolon” is our first “kid”. Listen to it and we are sure that you will find it interesting and you will see that the band has a lot to say.