Meta-Stasis is one of UK’s most prolific Extreme metal bands of the recent past. Having released two ground breaking albums which were both commercially and critically acclaimed; the band returns to India with Deccan Rock- IV and is set to co-headline with BEHEMOTH! Freshly back from playing the Bloodstock Festival last weekend. I speak to the front man- Jeremy Gomez or popularly known as Solomon.J.Lucifer.Christ about the band’s music, imagery, early times and lots more: Excerpts from the interview-
MJM. Greetings from the Metaljesus camp! You played Bloodstock Festival last weekend. How was it? You guys must be tired now after a jam packed weekend.
Solomon J – Bloodstock was unbelievable. We enjoyed every second of it, we acted like a pack of wolves running wild on stage, it was madness. We had the most packed out tent in the Sofie Lancaster stage and biggest circle pit out of the whole weekend according to the press and friends. We can’t complain about that.
MJM. That sounds great! Speaking of the band, you guys were originally as a studio project, how did the idea of creating an actual band come by?
Solomon J – It developed from a studio project with the members from Sikth and Ted maul into a live band because of the good response we got from press and fans of the release of the first album ‘When the Mind Departs the Flesh‘. The bands concept traces back to Gibraltar childhood memories and friends. The name Meta-Stasis was given as a torn all Gibraltarians have to live with, myself being a Gibraltarian. Franco, a Spanish dictator once built a massive factory close to the south of Spain, with the intentions of when southernly winds blow across Spain, the poisonous gases the factory produces infiltrates the lungs of the people of Gibraltar causing a lot of cancer. Many protests have taken place by Spanish and Gibraltarian people to close the factory down but till this day it is still stands there. We do NOT need cancer in any shape way or form and the spreading of the disease in metastasising but we see it as the real anti Christ which shows no compassion towards humanity. We are Meta-stasis !!!!
MJM. What inspires you to write such lyrics? What was the concept behind the writing?
Solomon J – Concepts are of religion, personal turmoil, family and friend loss, psychosis and working with the mental health. This inspires me to write about the darkest corners of humanity.
MJM. How sure were you with the direction of the band’s music? The album, ‘When the Mind Departs the Flesh’ was a ground breaking album in the band’s career. It was critically and commercially acclaimed. Tell us about how this album was molded.
Solomon J – You can never be sure of a sound for a new band especially if it developed in a studio out of nowhere. The aim was to sound as heavy as possible and not to sound like every other band. When ‘The Mind Departs the Flesh Moulded’ from two months of self loafing in a negative house in Cockland. Ted Maul and Sikth members lived together in a house in London and so we turned the first floor of the house into a pro home studio recording the whole album from drums to vocals. It was all under the influence of the negative power !
Listen to ‘The Thorn’ here-
MJM. How different do you think was ‘The Paradox of Metanoia’, in terms of writing and approach with all the new members in place?
Solomon J – It was very different as it was no longer a studio project and we rehearsed songs and wrote songs partly at home and in a rehearsal room. Dynamics and song writing changed. Although the main writer was me, so the focus and direction was always the same. In ‘The Paradox of Metanoia‘ I Introduced a keyboard player to be able to trigger all the electronic sections. The band aimed to go for a more of a cross breed in music mixing extreme metal with jungle/drum and bass.
MJM. How important was it to keep an eye on the band’s on-stage imagery?
Solomon J – It’s always important to give a good impression live, we all wear our rotten suits, all suits have been hand made and buried in a hole in gardens for months drenched in vinegar and bleach. It’s important to not just look good but to smell at your best in every gig. Shock factor !
MJM. Whose idea was it to establish such make up and costumes? Even perhaps the whole idea of Psychos, Serial Killers, Medical terminologies, hospital, nurses etc.,
Solomon J – It was an idea myself and the band had before when the mind departs the flesh came along. I myself have been fascinated with serial killers since an early age. I work with humans with severe problems in life such as psychosis, aggression, serial offenders and many medical conditions. My life evolves around extreme human conditions and dark motives in life.
MJM. How do people react after the performance, especially teenage girls that you might come across?
Solomon J – Most people react shocked I don’t know about teenage girls. They might run to their parents I guess.
MJM. Have you ever come across funny public commentary because of such an appearance?
Solomon J – I think we have been called many things and been compared to many horror movies. It’s something you accept and move on. Once our key board player was called the owner of Kentucky fried chicken. They have also commented on our bass player’s hands as he has exceptionally large hands that cover his whole bass but unfortunately has a small winky.
MJM. Favorite artists other than Metal?
Solomon J – Fx Twins, Jeffery Darmer, Gojira, Strapping young lad, Morbid Angel, Alice in Chains, Slipknot, Salvador Dali, Ted Bundy, HR Giger, KFC, Chicken dandy.
MJM. Any favorite movies or TV series you love watching?
Solomon J – I hardly watch TV as I’m always painting or writing music. Although I love good dark horror movies like sinister, the exorcist, Texas chainsaw massacre, American horror story, insect programs, crime and serial killer documentaries.
MJM. On a rather serious note, within a short span of time as a band, what are the most striking changes you see as a whole? People have also referred to Meta-Stasis as the ‘New Generation of Extreme Metal’. How does it feel to be honored with such titles? Do you think about it at all?
Solomon J – I think its great people think like that and can see the vision we entail. It’s taken the band a few years for people to understand what we are about. I guess it’s sometimes a hard capsule to swallow when you cross music genres for some true metal fans. It can be a hard pill to digest having all these styles in one band. But that’s what makes Meta-stasis. Defiantly, Metal Days, Bloodstock and India are the bands highlights.
MJM. Speaking of India, you guys played here earlier this year and are now returning back with Deccan Rock IV, co-headlining alongside BEHEMOTH! What’s running through your mind now?
Solomon J – We had the best times of our lives in India in January 2016 unforgettable. It was an honour to play to such a beautiful country and people. Getting invited back to India main supporting the mighty behemoth is like a dream for most of us. We are over excited and we can’t wait to come back and destroy India again with new songs and a killer new set that’s on fire !!
MJM. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of India?
Solomon J – Beauty, freedom, purity, friendliness, good people, curries, chicken, sweat, floating feeling, stomach pains and pure metal.
MJM. So, what is the setlist going to be like?
Solomon J – It’s going to be heavy as fuck with loads of diversity which will take you to the darkest hell your human brain can ever take you. Not for the weak hearted.
MJM. Do you have any last words for Indian fans?
Solomon J – We are coming for you all so show us your God !
MJM. Anyways, thanks for speaking to us. Looking forward to watching you guys here at Deccan Rock-IV. All the best with the upcoming shows and tours.
Solomon J: Respect and dandy !
Book tickets for Deccan Rock IV by entering ‘MJM’ followed by ‘your name’ in the name sections. Ex: MJM Harsha. Booking tickets this way would automatically put you in the list of buyers who are eligible in a draw to win specially signed posters from BEHEMOTH themselves! CLICK HERE.
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Harsha Vardhan (Metaljesus Magazine– Owner/ Chief Editor)