Stuffed illusions from the heavy breath of deep space. Wires of direct energy for transmitting hope to earth are needed. Dephosphorus’ Axiom is out there through the vast tomorrow and the vale of interstellar space explosions. Supersonic mania through the prism of downtempo grind death asylum. A conversation about how and why we ended up here, and where we’re going.
Dephosphorus are outraged and probably don’t see many good things in this tunnel that we live in. Is that so, or am I talking bullshit?
Panos: Something like that. That’s why we look beyond, aspiring to carry our audience with us… The feedback that we have up until now is that we accomplish this. It’s a basic self-preservation mechanism of psychological health, but to be exact, of the perception and understanding that we have about reality. It’s the ability to remove our focus from certain things and placing them in a wider context. I don’t know if you’re referring to the local Greek current events (which is in everyone’s mind), but in any case life goes on. We, our comrades and other fellow Greeks will continue to make good music and good art in general. Good art arouses the imagination, which is a necessary tool for survival and the evolution of the human race. If there is a way out from this sad local and international situation that we’re experiencing, we first have to imagine it. From the moment that we imagine something it automatically exists, therefore it is plausible.
What makes an impression is the extreme “transmission” of astrophysical and philosophical lyrics. Something not so ordinary at this stage. Is it that maybe the truth is out there somewhere?
Panos: A friend of ours, Qoupas from Paraside/Kvorna, explained to me at some point, the etymology of the word “anthropos” (human in Greek). It means “he who looks up”. Besides man is the only animal whose physiology evolved in such a way as to enable him to easily look up. A human that doesn’t wonder about the meaning of his existence is not human. We perceive, admire and try to understand this vast reality that surrounds us. A universe that, up to this point, we estimate is made of billions of galaxies and trillions of stars, and is governed by physical laws, which are unknown to us (dark matter, dark energy, etc.). The fact that we are on this planet wondering about all these things seems like a universal prank. Even so, if we evolve correctly we might be getting closer to understanding, and solving the riddle of our existence.
I confess that I get really psyched with Dephosphorus songs, much more than with the previous band you had (STRAIGHTHATE deathcore, grind R.I.P). Is that something that came from within or did you follow some underground music recipes?
Panos: You are an old comrade, so you know our background and where we come from very well. So the fact that you get more psyched with Dephosphorus than with Straighthate makes us very happy. Me (vocals/lyrics) and Thanos (guitar/bass/song writing) are very proud of having been members of Straighthate. We feel that we left with them very important work and heritage. Straighthate was a big school. I will agree with what Andrew Childers wrote on the Grind & Punishment blog (http://grindandpunishment.blogspot.com). He wrote that Straighthate was in a way our preparation stage for Dephosphorus. You like Dephosphorus more because, on the one hand, Thanos has evolved as a song writer making more intense and special songs, and on the other hand we have all grown as musicians. And last but not least there is an excellent chemistry between myself, Thanos and Nikos our drummer (who is also a member of Injekting Khaos). The instinctive immediacy of our material is owed, to a great degree, to the chemistry that exists.
To answer the last part of your question (about “music recipes”), we composed the “Axiom” material that you have heard, and the 14 new songs (for the upcoming album and the two splits), in isolation, with very few close friends watching the outcome of the material. This was very good for us, because we were totally focused on the music and there were no distractions like concerts or other bands rehearsing in the studio.
The style of the band reminds us very much of a mixture between CURSED, MORBID ANGEL and DISRUPT. Three bands that have really influenced the evolution of certain music genres like darkhardcore, deathmetal, d-beat crust punk. Do you feel that these bands have influenced you, or do you not feel the need for someone to label your music?
Panos: Thanos and I have a past of being hybrid creators from our Straighthate days. All three of us are choosy almost to the point of being flaky music lovers. That is where the combination of many different types of music comes from that makes up our own style. That is the reason why it is so hard to label us. And when someone does, our music forces him, in a way, to invent a more complex description, or a diverse combination of influences like you just did. We think that is a good thing, because it reveals that we challenge the listener, making him wonder “what the hell am I listening to exactly?”. But for the sake of ease and practical reasons, we invented the term “astrogrind” to describe our style. The three bands that you mentioned before, I think are godlike and so does Thanos who is our songwriter. I think they are part of his influences, among many other bands and types of music, from black metal and noise rock to rebetika….
For some strange reason your lyrics remind us of Supersonic Journey by Satyricon and Stellar Master Elite by Thorns. Both divine bands but with an almost warlike disposition. In a society that doesn’t care about anything, could the answer be our own personal war toward the things that keep us standing still?
Panos: Definitely, before even trying to change the macrocosmic reality, we first have to work on our own microcosm. We believe that humanity must journey on with a strong basis on science and logic. This personal belief acts as a foundation to our concept and aesthetics. We understand that this seems too good to be true, but as I mentioned before, if we can’t imagine a possible outcome, then it is never going to happen. Furthermore we are very much against defeatism and apathy. Therefore through our music and our concept we aspire to encourage our comrades in this humble, microcosmic level of our underground community, to sharpen their imagination. And who knows? Maybe some of the future visionaries who will guide humanity, may be inspired by what we, and others, are “planting” right now.
I hope we get a chance to see you perform your material live. All this “clatter” that emerges from your speakers should be heard live.
Panos: We deliberately chose to focus on our song writing and not perform live because we had a deadline. Thanos, our guitarist and songwriter was drafted in the army a year ago and then he went abroad to study. Now, since we have “Axiom” mini-LP which is out as gatefold vinyl and a free download, and 14 new songs are ready for release for our upcoming debut album “Night Sky Transform”, also two split-EP’s (one of which is with the American band Great Falls for the Subscription Series of the Irish Hell Comes Home www.hellcomeshome.com), we hope to start playing live by next spring or summer. I guarantee it’s worth the wait!
The final words are yours.
Panos: I’m going to mention something that Iain M. Banks said in an interview, he is my favorite living author, one of the most powerful and fertile imaginations in the world right now, and someone I consider to be somewhat of a mentor. He said that in order to have a humane future, we must genetically evolve so as to be rid of our self-destructive genes, those of racism, sexism, xenophobia etc. Until then check out our website www.dephosphorus.com. We are grateful for your time, and we thank Ough for the opportunity to present our intentions – Stargazing & Violence!
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