Graveyard is a band from Barcelona, Spain, who I came across through their superb new EP released by Pulverised Records, The Altar of Sculpted Skulls (reviewed here). It caused me to ponder the question how a band can distinguish itself playing “old school” death metal without tinkering with the fundamental elements of the music in a way that destroys its authenticity. Graveyard pull off that trick; they succeed where other bands fail. They are also one of the few bands from Spain I’ve heard who devote themselves successfully to traditional death metal.
I had the chance to do an e-mail interview with Graveyard’s lead guitarist, Javi Bastard, who also runs his own recording studio. His answers are smart, funny, honest, insightful, and very interesting. Topics include Graveyard’s philosophy about music, observations about why Spain lagged much of Europe in the development of metal and about the current scene, the band’s approach to recording that old-school sound, recommendations about other Spanish bands, and future Graveyard releases. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
I should confess up front that I’m a newcomer to Graveyard, with “The Altar of Sculpted Skulls” being my first exposure to your music. How would you say it compares to the band’s previous releases?
Javi Bastard: I think “The Altar of Sculpted Skulls” sounds more spontaneous than our previous works, at least more than “One with the Dead”, in my opinion. The 4 new songs on “Altar…” were written and rehearsed in just 1 month or so while the songs on “One with the Dead” took us much longer… When we wrote/rehearsed “One with the Dead”, the band had existed for just 1 year and a half or so, now we’re getting closer to our 5th anniversary as a band so I think that explains a few things. In my opinion, “Altar…” is the first GRAVEYARD release where you can actually find a band with its “own style” (considering the small room left for “own style” when you play this kind of classic Death Metal). “Into the Mausoleum” is a whole different thing; it was written, rehearsed and recorded in 2 alcoholic days back in 2007. It was released as an MCD, but of course I see it as a demo released on CD. Continue reading »