CoC chats with Piotr Wiwczarek of Vader
by: Paul Schwarz / David Rocher
Though their last full-length album (1997's _Black to the Blind_ [CoC #27]) was released nearly two years ago, Vader have not been soundless in terms of output, as has been their tendency since the release of _De Profundis_ (1995/6 [CoC #17]). An extended EP (_Kingdom_ [CoC #32]) and live album (_Live in Japan_ [CoC #36]) have satiated hungry fans along with the band's rigorous and extensive touring schedule. However, it is finally coming again to the time when a new, full-length Vader creation will be gracing humanity. This coming January is the appointed time, so if the prophets of doom are wrong about the apocalypse, we won't be waiting too long; the alternative is literally waiting an eternity. This interview takes place on the last show of the band's most recent European tour with Six Feet Under, Enslaved, Cryptopsy, Nile and Thyrfing [see CoC #42 for double review] and includes the contributions of fellow CoCer David Rocher, who here represents his own Descension 'zine (and is noted as "D" in the transcript). I hope this satiates the hunger of all you Vader maniacs out there, and encourages the truly unfortunate out there who have never checked out this godly band to do so with all haste.

CoC: How has the touring been going? Are you happy with how the line-up of bands turned out, and that people turned up to the gigs?

Piotr Wiwczarek: In general it was a good tour. Good bands, good response, good crowd. Not bad conditions.

CoC: Have Pavement / System Shock given you any tour support for this one or are you still doing it on your own?

PW: No. I think this chapter is finished, with System Shock. _Live in Japan_ was the last release [with them]. So, now we have already signed with Metal Blade for the next release.

Descension: That's good news.

PW: It's good news? I hope so. It's what we need. Vader never got enough promotion; that's what we really need, as a band.

D: That's something that's really striking about Vader's career, actually. You always got massive recognition from the fans and from audiences and other musicians...

PW: That's the best! <laughs>

D: ... but labels always studiously ignored you.

PW: Yeah. To be honest, though, we don't need somebody who ignores us, we need somebody who is really loyal with us. That's why System Shock did a good job for us in the past, so we started to co-operate. That was real co-operation there between us, as a band, and them, as a record company. But the story was, they do not have enough potential for us. We've still got to do something... better. That's why we need promotion. That's why we decided to sign with Metal Blade. It's not like new news because Metal Blade was asking us for some deal, seems like a year and a half ago or something. It took a long time to decide.

D: What do you think of the bands that are signed to Metal Blade, generally? They have some pretty good acts, like Amon Amarth and...

CoC: Immolation, which he [David] doesn't like.

PW: To be honest, I don't really care about the death metal bands who are signed to Metal Blade. As I said, we need a guy who will try to be loyal with us and promote the band. The regular work. We don't expect something special, we just expect regular promotion.

CoC: What is the plan with the new album? Are you recording anything or planning to record?

PW: We already booked the studio for the middle of October, so we should be done with the next album by the end of November, probably. The problem is that Metal Blade don't release any albums in December, which I was sad about. So they will release our next album in January or February next millennium.

CoC: Where are you recording this time out?

PW: In Poland. Red studio. It's almost the same studio but much better equipped. The same studio we had recorded _De Profundis_ in [then called Modern Sound --Paul]. So, the sound should be better; I hope so.

CoC: Who's the producer this time, is Andy Bomba doing it again or are you producing yourselves, 'cause you produced _Live in Japan_?

PW: We're going to work with the guy who helped us to record _De Profundis_ [Adam Toczko --Paul], the same guy. We'll do it together.

CoC: Are the lyrics in a similar vein?

PW: I think it's going to be the way it was on _Black to the Blind_. We will also be working with the persons responsible for that, also a friend of mine, and... we'll see, you know. I need more time, 'cause I'm still waiting for a couple of lyrics. Maybe I'll write like two or three of them, maybe. It depends, if we have enough time and there's still lots to do... We're still busy, we don't have so much time left, but we still need to put ideas into notes and everything, for myself and the band for the studio.

D: Concerning the lyrics, you often include notes to the lyrics within the booklets...

PW: Yeah, it's kind of -- not even an explanation, just kind of a note about the source of the lyrics, you know? There's a few persons responsible, so I just ask them to write something from themselves. 'Cause lyrics are mostly like a personal expression, so it's easier to understand for somebody who doesn't always know what's going on. It's just a close-up, it's nothing like explanation, because that's impossible. Lyrics are personal. They should stay personal, but you know, many people just wanted to know, "What the fuck is up, man? The source." So that's why we try to write down the notes about that. Sometimes it's about influence, sometimes it's a few words taken from a source. It depends on the author. I think that it's best if the author can decide how to explain it.

CoC: Musically, are you going in the same sort of direction as _Kingdom_ [CoC #32] was? Are you heading for a sort of mid-paced direction or is it going faster again?

[Note: I meant the direction of "Kingdom" and "Creatures of Light and Darkness", the two original new tracks, not any of the other material on this extended EP. --Paul]

PW: _Kingdom_ is not the "new way" of Vader creations, it is nothing like that. _Kingdom_ was specially recorded for guys who were looking for the extra song, the bonus tracks for _Black to the Blind_. I know what the problem is, you're thinking about those remixes, right?

CoC: No, no, I was actually thinking about -- not the remixes, I didn't think you'd be going in that direction --, I meant with "Kingdom" and with "Creatures of Light and Darkness" it had a more mid-paced feel.

PW: The remixes are something different. It's not even Vader; it's made from Vader, but it's not even Vader. Vader is Vader, we stay Vader. The next album also is going to be Vader, which means having speed. So, take it easy.

CoC: I'm okay.

D: What was basically the idea behind the techno remixes, as a matter of fact?

PW: To be honest, we had to do it because nobody wanted to release the album with like fifteen minutes total time [Pavement / System Shock do not release EPs as a matter of procedure, thus EP-type products like Malevolent Creation's _Joe Black_ and Vader's _Kingdom_ are made longer and priced and sold as "rarities compilations" --Paul]. So, we had a couple of remixes made with different friends and there was even an idea to make a full album just with remixes, but we found out it's not a good idea, we don't need it. We're Vader and... it's not good. It's not bad to put two songs as bonus tracks, to kind of experience something, but nothing more, I guess.

CoC: I was going to mention you're wearing a Marduk shirt [a particularly unusual brown/orange camo one, too --Paul]. I was wondering whether you'd talked to them about tanks, because I recall you liked tanks, and they're big into tanks?

PW: I'm a freak of that, I'm a freak of that since like two or three years ago. I started that with making plastic model kits, and I also get books, uniforms, weapons, replicas and that sort of things. I'm crazy about that.

D: I think it is particularly Morgan [Hakannson, Marduk guitarist] who's into this.

PW: I never got the chance to talk to him, but we are probably going to play with them soon, so it would be nice to talk about that.

D: What do you think of their music?

PW: Heavy. Heavy. It's a little bit different, but it's still heavy and brutal: that's the way it should be.

D: Were you never approached by Osmose at some point, concerning signing to them?

PW: Osmose? I don't think -- they -were- interested in signing a deal, but for the demos, and it was too late: Hammerheart already had it [and re-released Vader's two demos, _Necrolust_ and _Morbid Reich_, as _Reborn in Chaos_ --Paul]. I think they [Osmose] have a different way. I wish them good luck, but it is something different, I guess. They have too many bands to care about.

CoC: To what extent do you think that being the biggest band in Poland, pretty much ever, has changed your perspective on music? Has it changed your perspective on music?

PW: I told you, we see the same, I guess. Not the same as we used to be like ten years ago, or more, but we've still got the same passion, the same feeling, and I think that's what's most important. Because you know, the feeling is the most important thing if you are creating music. And of course we have more experience, we have spent more time on this Earth, so we're more grown-up, but it doesn't mean we think of something different. We still play the same music and we're going to keep playing it in the future. Vader is Vader.

D: Talking about the Eastern death metal scene, seems that the Eastern countries have a pretty strong scene rising.

PW: Yeah, it is.

D: Have you noticed any bands in this?

PW: Well, you know, maybe I am too busy now to follow what's happening in the underground at all. But I could recommend a couple of names from Poland, like Devilyn, like Decapitated. This [Decapitated] is a new band and some pretty young guys, like seventeen, eighteen years old. Fucking heavy and fast, man: unbelievable. I was like, that was the first time in my life I was the producer of a band and that's why I can recommend... <laughs> I'm kidding, man, it's a really good band. And there's more bands, not just death metal or heavy metal or black metal, but I just don't remember all the names now.

CoC: A couple I know, Yattering...

PW: Yattering! The guy who is drumming for Vader now is from Yattering. He joined about two weeks before we started the tour.

D: Is Doc no longer...

PW: No, no, no. He got like a break. For a couple of months, because of some problems, I think like the drugs, and he needs to do something with himself and with that. We've got time, we can help him to do that. But if nothing changes, Doc probably will never come back. But I hope he will do something with that and everything is going to be alright. For now, this guy like saved the tour for us, 'cause we were close to cancelling the tour, 'cause we didn't have enough time to prepare the songs [with another drummer]. This guy prepared ten songs in two weeks, from the beginnings, which is a good job. And you're going to see tonight, he's also good. He's a little different, but the same speed, the same craziness.

CoC: Well, the Yattering album [_Human's Pain_, CoC #36] is pretty insane. <laughs>

PW: Those guys are friends of mine. _Human's Pain_ was the last album? [I acknowledge this --Paul]. Those guys, they work pretty hard with what they're doing. So I think they should have something more just for music. In this fucking business, you know, sometimes you need just the record company with the money, to feel the success. We work in a different kind of way, we work hard, and we have, and I think just to have money is not enough, it shouldn't be enough, to do something.

D: What do you think of the bands with whom you're on tour this evening?

PW: Great bands, especially Nile; they've just started. Cryptopsy, we used to tour with them in the States, you know, March, that was a great tour also. Enslaved, we met those guys in Oslo for the first time when we were on tour with Morbid Angel, also pretty much surprised with them, 'cause I hear lots of shitty words about Norwegian bands. So, that was the first band I was in touch with and they're a good band and good guys, you know, friends. Thyrfing, they're a new band, the guys are alright. Six Feet Under also, there were no problems with them on the tour, they were the headliners. Not tonight [where Mayhem took their place --Paul], though.

CoC: Okay, I think we should all go watch Nile.

PW: Yeah, you should.

(article submitted 12/10/1999)

5/25/2000 P Schwarz Vader: The Cold Demons of Death Metal
10/16/1997 P Schwarz Vader: Within the Dark Lord'S Silent Empire
11/1/2011 A McKay 9.5 Vader - Welcome to the Morbid Reich
9/8/2009 J Smit 7 Vader - Necropolis
10/5/2006 J Smit 8 Vader - Impressions in Blood
1/2/2006 J Smit 8 Vader - The Art of War
10/31/2004 J Smit 7 Vader - The Beast
4/11/2003 M Noll 9 Vader - Revelations
3/13/2001 M Noll 6 Vader - Reign Forever World
5/25/2000 P Schwarz 9.5 Vader - Litany
1/16/1999 P Schwarz 9 Vader - Live in Japan
7/8/1998 P Schwarz 8.5 Vader - Kingdom
1/1/1998 P Schwarz 9 Vader - Black To The Blind
2/4/1997 A Gaudrault 10 Vader - De Profundis
8/12/1996 G Filicetti 4 Vader - Sothis
5/11/2008 J Smit Vader / Septic Flesh / Devian Pedigree Butchery
5/31/2005 A McKay Kreator / Vader Kreationism
5/13/2001 M Noll Marduk / Mortician / Vader / God Dethroned / Amon Amarth / Mystic Circle / Sinister / ...And Oceans / Bal Sagoth Baptized by Fire and Beer
8/12/2000 P Schwarz Vader / Vital Remains / Fleshcrawl / Rebaelliun Invadering From Across the Seas
8/12/2000 M Noll Deicide / Immortal / Cannibal Corpse / Marduk / Vader / Dark Funeral / Hate Eternal / Vomitory There's No Mercy in Satan's Oven
8/12/1999 D Rocher Six Feet Under / Mayhem / Vader / Enslaved / Cryptopsy / Nile / Thyrfing / Darkseid Facing the Breton Storm Season
8/12/1999 M Noll Six Feet Under / Vader / Enslaved / Cryptopsy / Nile / Thyrfing Pig's Feet and All Things Yummy
6/7/1998 P Azevedo Morbid Angel / Vader / Entwined Morbid Mayhem
10/16/1997 P Schwarz Malevolent Creation / Vital Remains / Infernal Majesty / Vader Something Old, Something New, and All Things Death Metal
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