The beginnings of the band are going back to the year of 1999, exactly to the summer of the year. The cornerstone was took up by Stephan (guitar) and Claudio (drums) by playing a couple of jam sessions and finding out that the musical interests have the same direction. Soon they started their own song writing and the first song began to take shape. In search of more members helped chance to get in touch with Aschu which now assists with powerful guitar work. The trio began to be functioning and the songs became more. Unfortunately the search for a bass man have been unsuccessful, all tested candidates were unmotivated, so the bass position’s still vacant so far. On the other hand it was possible to occupy the vocal part during the beginning of 2001. Namely René took this job extremely well on. Remains to say that CROPMENT is his first band ever and he managed getting in brilliantly. Afterwards the band settled on CROPMENT as the name of the band.
interview with Claudio on 17-6-2002 by Nathaniel
CROPMENT is still really underground, but you had the chance to play with DEPRAVED, REQUIEM, and you will play with DERANGED soon. How did these opportunities happen?
At the right time at the right place...no, I’m just kidding! I’m involved in the underground especially in visiting and organising gigs and festivals. This way you get in touch with a lot of freaks. The gigs with SUDDEN DEATH, REQUIEM and DEPRAVED were organised / promoted by METAL DIE HARD FRONT. That&Mac226;s an organisation with the due in supporting brutal music only. When we were ready to play our first shows with CROPMENT we asked to play at some MDHF gigs to get first experiences. This way we got in the benefit of two shows with the same bands, one in Suisse Allmande and the other in the Romandie.
The DERANGED thing is running cause MDHF is organising a festival called HELLVETIA DAY II on August, 31st. There will play 7 Swiss bands and one special guest. A year ago this part was took on by famous INHUMATE. This year was DERANGED asked to play this fest and they’re ready to drive through whole Europe for it. It’s obvious that they want to play some more shows on the road. And we have the chance to open one show for them in Germany.
You exist since 1999, and you already have good skills and your songs are more than honest for a young band. Have you had a long experience before? How comes tha you meet each others?
Thanks for the compliment! There are mixed experiences into CROPMENT. Stephan had played in a Black / Ambient band and Aschu in a Punk Rock band before. Both hadn’t played more than five gigs before they joined CROPMENT. I guess they recorded one demo tape each, but all just for fun and mainly for some friends. René, the singer, had absolute no experiences with music / singing / crying. He joined us as a really Death / Grind freak. He got in touch on an announcement of us when we had been looking for a vocalist. Myself had been playing in a Dark / Gothic Metal band called LEBEWOHL for 3 years. We recorded a demo tape and played several gigs in Switzerland, Czech Republic and Austria. But the band disintegrated in year 1998. It was anyway not quite my style of music, but my search for a real Death Metal band was without luck. Nobody wanted to play this sound till I met Stephan at a great concert in 1999. We discussed the situation in the scene and agreed on immediately our first jam session some days after. The contact to Aschu resulted from a internet announcement.
Switzerland is more known for its hardcore bands than for a big death metal underground. Could you please explain some words about the death metal scene in your country? You had some cult bands like CELTIC FROST, CORONER, HELLHAMMER, SAMAEL. Which is the next cult band from Switzerland, according to you?
Within a year the Death Metal scene growed a lot here around. At the time we have a small and familiary underground scene with a lot of die-hard fans. Hardcore became also more popular than two years ago. In the time from 1997 to 2000 were just some Metallysee tours in Switzerland but very few underground gigs. So the bands were also very rare. And all known bands were inactive or had already been in peace. I guess it was the epoch of a generation change. Since the year 2000 the scene is experiencing a “reunion”, there are a lot more concerts, clubs, fans and mainly more bands. Especially the bands are better than ever (I think), they have more and a better technical knowledge and above all I guess the peoples behind are more freaks than ever. There are great bands like YOUR OWN DECAY, THE CRANIUM, CENSORED, REQUIEM CREEPING VENGEANCE, GERBOPHILIA, AMBROSSIA and many more. So it’s quite hard to see which band will be next cult object.... I don’t know. By the way I don’t like the most cult bands. I respect them, they did a great job in their time (especially CORONER). But time runs!
You were at the SOUL GRINDING Festival in Strasbourg, which was organized by the guys of INHUMATE. What did you think about this 100% underground fest? Are there some gigs like this one in your country?
My first gig in France I ever visited. Very great public and bands! My favourite bands were IMPERIAL SODOMY, FATE and GOREROTTED. The prices were absolutely ok. Only the food sucked ! You know, I’m vegetarian and the dudes sold only sandwiches with meat and nothing. I thought, no problem I’ll walk into town to eat something. No, the fucking security was not letting me out before the end of the festival. That was really shit, I was pissed off! Ten bands without food! But INHUMATE did a great job and I hope there will be some vegetarian food next year. Otherwise 100% thumbs up! Visit our HELLVETIA Day on 31st August in Sursee! 7 Swiss bands and DERANGED as Headliner. MDHF will also do the two day-long UNDERGRIND FREAK FEST in Sursee in May with great bands like DEEDS OF FLESH, MALIGNANCY and PYAEMIA. For more info surf to www.metaldiehardfront.com or mail me at email@example.com
Since 2001 Switzerland has its own Metal / Grindcore only open-air called MOUNTAINS OF DEATH and will run from 23rd to 24th
August this year. More info: http://mypage.bluewin.ch/demonenbrut-openair/main/
You are into Fast Beast entertainment. Please explain what it is and what you are doing with it.
Before I joined MDHF I had founded Fastbeast Entertainment. Mainly for promoting gigs and bands. I had also managed REQUIEM for a short time, but it hasn’t worked together. Today I’m just doing the booking / promotion for CROPMENT by FB, I haven&Mac226;t any more time left for something else momentary. Later perhaps I’ll follow up my plans to found a label and distro. But that’s quite a bit work and I couldn’t find any collaborators for that. The main part, doing underground gigs, was adopted through MDHF in the 2000.
You said that you had influences from Death, Thrash, and black metal, and even from Grind core. Which are the bands that represent all of these metallic movements, according to you?
There are great known bands as MALEVOLENT CREATION, CANNIBAL CORPSE, VADER, MONSTROSITY, SUFFOCATION, CRYPTOPSY, EMPEROR, SLAYER, MAIDEN, NILE, NAPALM DEATH, KREATOR, SODOM, DARK FUNERAL just like more underground combos like INGROWING, SUDDEN DEATH, INHUMATE, DISAVOWED, CEREBRAL TURBULENCY, DEEDS OF FLESH, PROFANITY and a lot more.
Tell me about the future split vinyl you'll do with VAGINAL INCEST. Could you present this band to our readers?
The EP will contain our first two songs we’ve ever written. Their not up to date, their two years old but we’re mainly without studio experiences and don’t like to record a 9-boring-track-full-length with a shitty sound. Perhaps will do a next record till the end of the year. We’re thinking about a split CD. If there are any interested bands, get in touch. The contact to VAGINAL INCEST was pure chance. Their playing Porngrind and it’s very underground stuff. Check their website: www.vaginalincest.de. They’re three guys and a drum machine and sound quite filthy.
If death metal would be a beer, which one would it be?
Surely a Czech one! But which is hard to say, they have that a lot of great beers......especially Pilsner Urquell, Cambrinus, Staropramen or Starobrno.
Please tell me what you think about these few words.
CROPMENT: plays brutal music cause it’s fun to play!
ASPHYX: not my style, too slow
BEER: a fine invention! But I rather smoke!
TO PRAISE THE METAL ONLY FOR THE METAL: What is metal really ? Just posing or is there more behind? I guess it would bear more thinking about life and problems than just say I don’t care. Metal/ brutal music isn&Mac226;t a solution of problems, it&Mac226;s for my just the only effective valve to get out my aggression of my head.
CHUCK SCHULDINER: A great man which gave the Metal scene more perspectives and technical knowledge. Human, Symbolic and Individual Thought Patterns are highlights for me. Rest in peace!
Here's the end of this little interview. If you have something to add or to ask me, it's time to do it. Thanks for this interview, and STAY FUCKING METAL.
Thanks a lot for the nice interview. I Hope CROPMENT plays soon in FRANCE. All the best for SKULL FUCKED ZINE! Support the underground!