The Belgian Power-Trio Jan Frederickx - Guitars, vocals, Bram Criekemans - Bass, Nils Laureys - Drums alias Agathocles can just lean back and enjoy the increasing demand for the band and their new album "Grind Is Protest" in the course of the recent Old School Death Metal boom. Because they were there when Old School and Grind had just been developed. Guitarist Jan gives us some updates.
Agathocles was formed in 1985. Could you tell us how the band formed?
The band got formed by Erwin (old drummer) and myself when we were 13 years old. We wanted to make some serious noise damage, killing music in all its forms.
Who did the mincecore sound come about?
That came some years later, when grindcore got infected with stupid macho metal clichés like sexim, homophobia, racism,.... For us, that has nothing to do with grind/noise, which in our eyes, is left winged noise punk madness. So we invented this term "MINCE CORE" because we don´t wanna be connected with all the stupid values I mentioned above.
How did you distribute your early singles and EP´s? What was the audience reaction to your sound?
Most people totally hated our sound, but we didn´t care and still don´t care. We had a little network of friends and like minded people all over the world who helped spreading our noise around. DIY ethics, they really work !
Whom did you tour with in the early days?
In the 80´s, we have played gigs with bands such as LARM, EXTREME NOISE TERROR, NAPALM DEATH, TOTAL MOSH PROJECT, EXTREEM, DISTRESS, BELGIAN ASSOCIALITY, TYFOON, PESTILENCE, VIOLENT MOSHQUITOS, COMPLETE POLITICAL DISORDER, SOB and many more.
Who are some of the bands who have inspired you?
The bands in the 80´s that have had an impact on us, well, here are a few of them ACCURSED BLUDGEON, LARM, RUIDO DE RABIA, HELLHOUSE, CYANAMID, STRAIGHT AHEAD, HELLHAMMER, SNOT, NOB, SATANIC LEGIONS OF DEATH, 7 MINUTES OF NAUSEA, early NAPALM DEATH, NEOS, SATANIC MALFUNCTIONS, ACTIVE MINDS, CRASS, DISCHARGE and many more. Some inspired us music wise, some lyric wise.
Who does the writing for the band? What subjects have influenced your writing?
I write all lyrics. They deal with things happening around us. Ecology, politics, social matters, personal things, the "scene"... Influence? I have no influence in writing lyrics. My lyrics are my perception on things I see and feel happening around me. And the mood can change, depending on how I feel when writing the lyrics.
Are members of the band gnostic christians and could you tell us something about your beliefs?
No one of the AG members is into religions. The ideology that fits me best is communism. The other AG members are more anarchists.
What bands do you like on the American metal scene and in Belgium?
Belgian bands that I like and which still exist are: MUCUS, POS, SOCIAL CANCER, VETTIG FRONT, PUNISHED EARTH, ULRIKES DREAM, A DEN OFROBBERS, KING TERROR, VORTEX,.... Old and new USA bands that I like are SOCKEYE, LETTUCE VULTURES, SNOT, STRAIGHT AHEAD, CYANAMID, DEATHSTRIKE, GENETIC CONTROL, early POISON IDEA, KILLDOZER, BOOM AND THE LEGION OF DOOM, MAN IS THE BASTARD, BASTARD NOISE, CHARRED REMAINS, NEANDERTAL, CTHUWULF, ...
What does the future hold for the band?
We are busy recording new stuff and got some gigs planned. Beginning 2009, we´ll start writing a new full album.
Could you tell us about your latest release?
The new studio album "GRIND IS PROTEST" is just released on www.displeasedrecords.com from Holland. It has 40 songs in 34 minutes. It´s raw politically and socially aware grind core or mince core if you prefer. Don´t expect cheesy guitarsolos nor technical bullshit, just sheer raw anger. Check www.agathocles.com if you want. This album is the last recording with Tony, our bassplayer, who killed himself in August 2008. MINCE ON ! Author: John Wisniewski, transl. K. Weber, photo: Displeased Records Date: 2008-12-03