Interview with Rezistor
[Author: Robex Lundgren - Published on: Robex Lundgren Musik Blogg]
What´s the name of your band?
The name of the band is "Rezistor" - a derivation of the word "resistance" with the common "or" ending (commonly used in thrash) added ;) Funny thing is that initially we wanted to play a different genre, but after a couple of rehearsals, we switched 180 degrees and decided to go with what we know best :)
How was the band formed?
The band was formed in 2008, after quitting our former bands. Like I said, we wanted to do something different, heavier and honest.
Can you tell about your band?
Well, the "philosophy" behind it is very simple: no rockstar attitude, no gimmicks, just straight metal/thrash played from the heart; we wanted to recapture the pure pleasure of composing and playing rock music with no strings attached (no label, booking agent, tours and the whole nine yards) - we've been there and although that experience had its perks...to be honest it wasn't fun. The music industry nowadays is all about the industry and very little about the music. We got sick of it. To sum things up it's something like: "play your heart out & have fun or go home" :)
Where are all band members from? Who does what in the band?
We're all from the same town, Constanta (one of the largest cities in Romania), a port at the Black Sea.
The current band line up is: Eugen - vocals, Alex - guitar, Valentin - bass.
What was the ambition of the band when you started?
We've been pretty ambitious with our former bands and that turned out to be a waste of time & energy, so this time around we decided to just have fun playing the music we love. As simple as that :) Sometimes musicians tend to focus on the technical aspect of it and their goals tend to be unrealistic - but the most important thing is not forgetting why you started all this in the first place: because you like it and it's fun doing in. Without that, you got nothing.
Could you explain your music to someone that haven't heard you?
Oh, that's a tough one 'cause frankly we hate labeling stuff - especially our own :) But I'd say in essence we play metal/thrash with various other little "flavours" (involuntarily) added here and there :) We've always been (and always will be) metal fans first and then musicians so naturally our music incorporates all the different elements that we've listened to for so long. And of course, different people see and hear things differently so we get a lot of comparisons (from Exodus to Pantera and Rammstein, heh). We prefer the listeners to find the answer to this question themselves :)
Where was your first gig?
Because the band is scattered right now (due to work duties & life) throughout Romania and abroad, it's impossible for us to play live because our schedules are not fixed and we never know in advance the next time we'll be all in town. It's a major sacrifice for a band 'cause it's one of the very few occasions when you can meet the folks that dig your music, but it's what we have to do in order to keep things going. Finding musicians for this type of music is very difficult around these parts...
Who writes your songs? Who writes the music who writes lyrics?
Although it's usually either Alex or Valentin who come up with the main song ideas, we do consider that writing Rezistor songs is a collective effort because each member has its own style and vision and sometimes just a couple of notes added here and there can totally transform a song so we don't minimise anyone's input. Every song is played & shaped during rehearsals so the final version is sometimes quite different from the original idea anyway. That's why we prefer to use the "all music & lyrics by Rezistor" formula: being in a band is not a bragging contest and it's pointless to emphasize one's contribution vs the others - we work & function as a whole.
Who has the best sence of humor in the band?
Well we like to think that again, it's a collective effort :) I mean playing metal nowadays in itself means that you're a bit looney :) When one adds to that all the hours spent in the rehearsal room, one has to have a good (and strong) sense of humour to go on :) On the other hand that's probably why we ended up playing together - 'cause we're not right in the head :) We have plenty of photos on our website & Facebook page, have a peak and see how a Rezistor practice session looks like and you'll understand what I mean :)
What's good/bad with the band? What genre do you feel you are?
A band is pretty much like a family - because let's face it, we do spend a lot of time cooked up together in that small practice room :) And the life of a metal band member is no different from day to day life - it has its ups and downs: you get excited when someone sends you a message saying that he/she loves your music, when you meet other musicians or your own friends & fans, you get a bit down when someone trash-talks you for no reason, etc. But we do this primarily for ourselves and we've developped during all these years a thick skin :)
Why did you pick that particular style? What are your songs about?
Well like I said before we initially wanted to try something else - industrial metal - but once we've started working on some songs the whole process suddenly became complicated and tedious because we were forced to rely on a computer (the very definition of unreliable in a stupid loud environment such as a metal band) and lots of extra prerecorded parts, which was quite the opposite of what we were after. On the other hand, the riffs themselves were straightforward thrash. So we've dumped all that, rearranged some of the songs and went back to basics: simple & raw metal :) So the band's style pretty much came together on its own :)
As for the meaning of our lyrics...let's say that we live a bitter life in a bleak country and all that was poured in our music as a way of exorcising our own inner demons. Everyday life fuels our rage and keeps us motivated. Eugen writes the lyrics and we like what he comes up with so we pretty much let him say whatever he feels :) It just happens that we connect with them...most of the time :)
Do you write your own material or mainly covers?
Yup, we write our own stuff. It's the only way to go for us because after all those hours spent writing and shaping the song you become attached to it (it's like your own little baby); so it would feel unnatural to play music written by someone else because there would be no emotion, no connection with it. We prefer our ugly little offsprings instead of a postcard face kid, because it's our own "flesh and blood" :) So if you like our songs - or not - yeah, we're to blame ;)
As for covers...we've played covers in the past with our former bands but only during live shows as a way to connect better with the audience; honestly we don't see the point of a cover band - no disrespect for such bands whatsoever, but we just don't see why you'd prefer to do that instead or writing original material...
Have you made any albums? If yes what are they?
Yes, we released our debut album, "Beware the Silent" in 2011 and we're currently recording our second studio album (we haven't picked a title yet). Both are DIY & available for free :)
Do you have any clips on YouTube?
Well we don't have actual videos (what's the point in doing music videos today anyway?), but our music is available on YouTube. Please visit our channel and have a listen: http://www.youtube.com/RezistorBand ;)
How old are you?/What got you started in music?
We're well into our 30s and aging ugly :) Music got us started :) Seriously: we loved metal and like many other kids we wanted to be able someday to play in a band. We've started on acoustic guitars playing by ear the songs we were listening on the radio or records, went through a whole shebang of garbage and DIY gear, and lots of years later here we are, still noobs and proud of it :)
Is it easier to get your inspiration from older bands or from bands more modern?
Well we grew up listening to those older bands so naturally they've become part of our music background and shaped our personal tastes, but the new bands help us stepping up our game, you know :) It's really incredible how good a lot of these bands are and they've raised the bar very high for the rest of us :) I mean listen to bands like Revocation, Havok, Angelus Apatrida or Korzus...man, that's heavy as hell and cool as...well, you know ;)
What's the first step when making a new song?
I wish we knew :) Writing a song is a very random process in our case :) Sometimes you may wake up with a riff in your head, other times you may come up with a cool chorus after listening to your favourite music, and often just playing your instrument will help you churn good ideas. Inspiration can strike anywhere and anytime. That's why some musicians always carry a hand recorder in their pocket or keep a guitar in their bathroom :) And it works, by the way :)
How do you feel about the downloading of music instead of buying albums?
Oh, heck...while we don't support piracy and all that stuff, we can't ignore that downloading changed the music industry (and not only) forever. It's a phenomenon that can't be stopped anymore so the bands have to find new ways to use that to their advantage. For an Underground band that means free publicity and instant access to a large crowd of listeners, but on the other hand makes selling records pointless 'cause it only takes one buyer to get your music out in the digital world and then it's out of your hands. So a lot of bands (us included) decided to just use their records as promotional material and give their music away for free, and by doing so building a larger audience for their live shows and gain profit by selling merchandise. Now we don't tour and (so far) we have no merchandise, but on the other hand we've always thought that people should have free access to culture so we would have shared our music for free regardless :) If you're DIY, then you'd better be in all the way :)
What would be your dreams for the band?
Live long and prosper :) Really.
Besides your own music, what genres and bands do you listen to?
First of all, we don't listen to our music 'cause by the time it gets on the disc we get so sick of it after playing it hundreds of times that we wouldn't touch it even with a 10 feet pole ;)
Fortunately we never get tired of listening to other metal bands, and today there's really a lot to choose from :) We prefer the more aggressive side of metal, you know, stuff with heavily distorted guitars and screaming/growling vocals (preferably all in the same package) :) So thrash, death, hardcore or even industrial are game. Not too keen about black metal though. And all those "core" hybrids that sound the same (we hate all this modern production bullshit standard that makes everything sound artificial and digital). But really, anything that sounds good will make it to our playlist :)
How do you view the music industry of today?
There is no music industry anymore. We're back to square one when the labels were just band managers at best. You can't make money by selling records. But there's one good thing about all this: the "middle man" got the boot and now thanks to the Internet and the social media platforms the bands can have full control over what's going on with their music. Touring has become the main source of income (providing that you don't get screwed by tour managers & promoters - see "ANVIL! The Story Of Anvil" if you want to find out how things really are behind the curtain) coupled with selling merchandise and that's about it. But it's very difficult because there are new bands rising everyday and the audience has reached the saturation point. You really have to go through hoops to impress the listeners today 'cause let's face it, they've pretty much seen & heard it all...
What do you hold most dear?
Family. Friends, money, fame, anything else comes and goes. Family sticks through thick and thin. Sadly, for some it may take a while to understand that...
What would be your greatest fears for the future?
A global EMP strike followed by a zombie apocalypse ;) Seriously though,it's pointless to live in fear - tomorrow will become today even if it catches you crawling under the bed in total fear or with a smile on your face :) Instead of feeding yourself with negative energy, go out and live and party everyday like it's the last day on Earth - corny, but true :)
Have you been part of any other projects?
In short yes. In long...let's say if there are folks interested in more details they can follow the "trails of crumbs" (aka links & shares) that we've placed on our website & social media platforms :) We prefer to keep things separated...because musically speaking they're (totally) different entities.
Have you been in any other bands?
Yes, both local bands that never got far but were lots of fun and big names that had a lot going on for them but were a chore :) So yeah, we've seen both faces of this coin called "music industry & success". The road to the top is far less glamorous than most people think and you risk losing the most precious thing on the way: the joy of creating music just for the heck of it, and not because you have an army of music industry vultures on your back feeding on you until you drop dead or quit. We hate these freakin' middle men :( Anyway, we digress... let's just say that we prefer the past to remain just that. We are very proud of everything we've achieved with our former bands, but we live in the present. Whoever wants to know more: a bit of detective work will get you some tasty results - the music is out there, scattered all over the Internet - just Google it :)
What do you work with outside of the band and the music?
Yeah, music is just a hobby for us, it's very difficult to make a living out of playing heavy metal worldwide and for a Romanian band it's pretty much impossible because the costs of just maintaining a band are high, touring & recording is even pricier and often paid out of your own pockets, the average income in Romania in only 200 Euros, but the prices are just like in the rest of EU - add to that the highest VAT from all EU contries and you get the picture...so yeah, we have regular nerve wrecking jobs that often mess up our band's schedule. But it is what it is...
What would you do if there was no music?
There's no need to worry about that because if there was no music anymore than the human races would be wiped out/extinct :) Humans need music because art is the ultimate form of human expression and music (in our opinion) reigns supreme - because through music you can paint images in the listener's head, sculpt shapes, lay down words of wisdom, etc. Everything else is in fixed form. That's why 10, 100, 1000 people listening to the same album will "hear" it differently. Music is vibration and you need to be tuned on the right frequency to click with it.
How important are your fans?
Wait, we have fans? :) Joking aside, in spite of creating music primarily for ourselves, of course we are very honoured and interested in getting in touch with the folks that dig our music - 'cause like previously said, if they do like it, then they're probably tuned on the same frequency as we are. And fans are the ones that make or break a band - now more than ever. To ignore them would be beyond suicidal considering that anyone can access the social media platforms in seconds from anywhere on the Globe - your "glorious" career might end in a blink of an eye just because you were too arrogant and pissy with the wrong guy :) So stay humble and remember that at the end of the day they're the only ones that do give a damn that your band exists ;)
What's the funniest/most memorable thing a fan has done for you?
I wish we'd be able to tell a ton of cool stories about that, but honestly, we're probably not famous enough to drive peeps into superfan mode ;) We're still somewhere between "who are these guys" and "man these guys piss me off" :) But if there are some super excited fans outhere that would like to get in touch with us, don't be shy - we don't bite...yet :)
How often do you rehearse?
As often as possible. We love to do it and the rehearsal room is where all the magic happens :)
Where do you rehearse?
Because we have a pretty hectic & irregular schedule we are forced to rent practice space from a local studio whenever we need to. Maybe someday we'll manage to settle down and put together our own rehearsal studio, but for now renting is the best solution...in the meantime all the gear is piling up to the roof in our homes :)
What drives a band that isn't all that famous and renowned to try to make a living on their music and to keep playing?
The only thing that keeps a band going is the love for metal - plain and simple. The music industry is in shambles and yet its remnants are still feeding on every victim they can sink their teeth into. So unless you're hellbent on doing this, sooner or later you will give up. There is no fame to gain anymore and they will make everything in their power to suck you dry of every penny so really, you have to fight all the way for your right to rock'n'roll.
Do you have any webpages?
There's a saying: "if you're not on the Internet, you don't exist" - that pretty much sums things up :) You have to take advantage of all the social media platforms and anything and everything that can get you closer to your listeners in order to be visible. People these days expect everything to be just one click away - so yeah, we had to go the whole nine yards:
- Website: rezistor.eu5.org
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rezistor/182286798465646
- YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/RezistorBand
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/Rezistorband
- MySpace: https://myspace.com/rezistorro
- Bandcamp: http://rezistor.bandcamp.com/
- ReverbNation: http://www.reverbnation.com/rezistor ...you name it :)
Any pearls of wisdom for all other bands out there?
We're not in the position to give others advice (besides we don't like to do that anyway). But there are a few things that we consider to be common sense: make music the way you want to, not how others tell you to. And stay humble. Oh, and if you ever plan on having a family, make sure you marry a very patient & understanding woman/man :) Musicians tend to live in their own little bubble world and often don't realise that for the people around them, their "path to glory" is not glorious at all. So make sure you pick someone who can stomach the "honey, I'm going on a tour" bomb well ;) In fact, you can test this even if you're not planning to go on a tour at all - just try it and see what happens ;)
Would you like to add anything else?
Actually yes :) We are currently recording our second album (world premiere exclusive news, btw, heh) so expect new Rezistor material (hopefully) by the end of this year. Get ready for a deadly dose of cardiac metal (a little inside joke) :)
On a different note, thank you for this interview :) And to all you (very) patient readers: kudos for making it all the way through this :) Feedback is much appreciated, so please get in touch :) And spread the word about us if you like our music :) All the best & stay metal :)