By Kostas Vaxevanos
Interview originally appeared in Repulsive Echo fanzine 1999 May
Q: When was Dementor formed and give us some info about all your releases till now?
A: Dementor is one of the oldest active Slovak extreme bands. The band arose in 1988 like three members band. I joined the band in 1991 and we started to work hard on the progress of our musical expression. The first official recording was the demo tape called “The extinction of Christianity” ’92. This stuff contains 9 tracks of fast more technical death metal influenced by Pestilence, Death, Slayer and Celtic Frost. It was sung in Slovak language. The next act is the second demo “Morbid Infection” ’93 recorded with new vocalist and the result is six brutal death metal songs. This was the beginning of our our Brutal creation. Both the demos got very positive response and a young Slovak label
Immortal Souls Productions offered us a cooperation. The first step on this way was the MC album “The church dies” ’94 sold in the number of 1200 pieces all around the world. At this time, we met a lot of personal changes and the next recording came out in 1997. It was our “Kill The thought On Christ CD edited by ISP again. In this album i took the vocal duties. Although our former slower drummer we recieved positive reviews all around the world. In 1998 we recorded our next material entitled “The Art of Blasphemy” and offered it to some european labels. After some negotiations we took the offer of Spanish label Qabalah productions (sublabel of Repulse) and signed with them. This is all actually.
Q: There have been a lot of lineup changes all these years. Noone from the first line up plays in the band right now right?
A: Yes tou are right. The three original members gradually left the band so i am pretty much the oldest member. The problem was these people list interest in playing death metal without great success. They were not able to wait and work hard for it according the need of Dementor. They chose to embrace a more family style of life. Our biggest difficulty was to find a good quality drummer. Its almost impossible in our surroundings to find a suitable man. We have also strict demands from every band member. The stuff gets stronger when everyone follows the same target.
Q: You released. Your first demo in 1992, in the same year you faced the fall of Communism in your country. Was the political status a reason that prevented you of releasing your material earlier?
A: Communism had fallen since november 1989 in former Czechoslovakia but the state was divided back then. We didnt have any actual problem with communists directly but the conditions to record was impossible because there weren’t any studios and the state could not support that way of music. The state was actually the owner of everything and the personal ownership of factories or shops was forbidden. After the fall of thIs system the situation changed and many studios arose in Slovakia. It was the first impulse and possibility to record officially in 1992. It was also the right time for Dementor to present a recording after the time loss caused by the Communist vacuum.
Q: The cover of “Kill the thought on Christ” is connected with the lyrics. You seem to have Jesus Christ under your sight…
A: Yes especially the corrupted Christian church. We often use their symbols in our lyrics to express our feelings. People in Slovakia blindly believe the fat priests and follow them to total destruction. They mostly know the content of bible, they know the ideas of Christ but they are able for example to send soldiers for wars. Their faith is often a reason for conflicts.
Q: You covered a song from a Slovak band called TUBLATANKA in your previous CD. Do you believe is it more interesting to cover a band that does not belong to the extreme genre?
A: Yes i think so. If you try some song relative to your music, you have probably just one possibility how to play the song. You play the same like the original. The original is pure rock with Slovak lyrics. I think it would be very interesting to compare these two versions if you know both. You would be maybe interested.
Q: Which groups have influenced you in your early days?
A: We have been influenced by bands like Death, Pestilence, Celtic Frost, Venom, Napalm Death, Slayer, Kreator or Morbid Angel in our beginnings. We still like these bands but also Vader, Deicide, Hypocrisy, Cannibal Corpse, Suffocation…
Q: You left Immortal Souls Productions and joined Qabalah recs. Weren’t you satisfied by the work ISP done for you?
A: We were always very satisfied with the work of ISP. They always made the maximal effort to place Dementor to the world death metal scene. We thought The Art of Blasphemy will be edited by ISP again. Everything was prepared for this act but however we decided to contact five other European labels we like their work and offered them our stuff. Just Qabalah showed an interest and offered us a contract. We took it because they were a sublabel of Repulse and they make very good promotion for their bands. The whole promotion and distribution of Qabalah is going directly though Repulse. The next reason was because of some stupid people who were saying that ISP and Juraj was publishing our material just because we are friends. This way we can prove them Dementor is also a good quality band for western labels.
Q: Have you ever played live shows out of the borders of Slovakia? If yes in which countries and what was the responce?
A: We have played behind the borders of Slovakia, yes. We play very often in our relative state Czech Republic but we do not consider it a foreign country. We have also played in germany Ukraine, Latvia and in the capital of Russia, Moscow. We can compare concerts in Eastern and Western countries and i can tell you the best atmosphere was always in former USSR countries. Especially in Moscow. We played there two times in Deathraider fest and we obtained very good response. We have also a lot of new friends in Moscow like Michael Smirnoff member of Mental Home or Yura of Thron.
Q: You are considered to be one the best samples of European Death Metal. How do you feel about that?
A: Thank you very much for the compliment. I don’t know what to say. We always wanted to create good quality material and we try to improve our music. I always think our every new material is always better than the previous. Maybe we will attain very big popularity. Anyway we will make maximal effort to write good material in the future.
Q: Give us some brief info for your new CD the Art of Blasphemy.
A: TAOB is our best, fastest , rawest and brutalest material. It contains 10 tracks and everyone has to consider it himself. I have to say our drummer Hollosh did very good work and he is way faster than our previous drummer.
Q: The new CD was recorded in July of 1998 and it hasn’t been released at the time. Why is that delay?
A: the delay arose due to the manufacturer in Austria. I dont know the exact problem. Toni or Dave from the label should know more about the whole matter. The CDs are ready, we are waiting for the booklets and that time loss is inconvenient for the band but we have to wait.
Q: Both your cds have been recorded at pro Art studios. You seem to be pleased there?
A: This studio has very good equipment. The sound engineer is very good man and working with him is very nice. Most of Slovak as well as Czech bands use Exponent studio. I think their sound is very familiar and we wanted to achieve something different. In Pro art record minimum of death metal bands and you can hear the difference between these two studios. We are absolutely very satisfied there in general.
Q: What are your plans? Are you going to intend a tour?
A: Our plans are very promising. We will play some summer festivals in our surroundings as well as one festival in Germany with Amon Amarth and Edge of sanity. We are looking forward. About a tour? Toni does not have any experience but he promised he will will help us according his chances to prepare some gigs. Osmose productions have shown big interest in Dementor and most possibly our next album will be issued by them. Thats a very big challenge for us and we want to write an even better album than the Art of blasphemy which feels like very difficult for me to achieve. The future opens its embrace and we will use our wings.
Q: i want to thank you and give a message to close this interview…
A: Thank you very much for this fantastic interview. I appreciate your interest in Dementor. Keep the blasphemy!
Original and reissue by Immortal Souls Productions 1997/2021