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Here's an interview of GERBE OF LIFE, a BRUTAL GRIND / DEATH band from the North of France that includes also other elements in its music, that was done with Seb (drums) and Micha (Vocals).
Even if Iím their webmaster and If Iím very involved in their music/ promotion, I decided to do this interview (after some reflections) as I still have got a few nice questions to ask themÖ (and as a few more promo is always welcome ;-)) ).
Last minute change:  contrary to what is indicated, the Split CD won't be with SUDDEN DEATH (Germany) but with another band (in negotiation).  As the studio sessions of our German Death metallic friends have been cancelled, they won't be able to propose their tracks in time.
Good reading, metallers!  


1.  Introduce the band!  

Seb:  We were formed into 97 whith the idea to make a music mixing various extreme styles Grind as a main basis.  This while speaking about subjects such as the obscure nature of the individual, and all that corrompts it, conditions it and from this fact destroys it.
We made some concerts, had some changes of line up, recorded one own-produced CD.  
After other changes of line up, we found a label called SKULL FUCKED (ran by the same guys who make the paper zine and organize the SKULL FUCKED Fest:  extreme festival metal).  
Weíre currently doing the promo of our first own-produced C.D..  


2.  What does GERBE OF LIFE means?  

Seb: The meaning of our name is rather clear, it is the vomit of the life as if the life were a sick individual who vomits with all the unhealthiest and pestilential aspects of the human nature in all its forms.  
For the choice of the bandís name, we wanted something a bit different from the commonplace, as well for its significance that for the fact it mixes 2 different languages in its appelation.  For us it was significant to verbally transcribe by an adequate bandís name the musical emotion we express.   


3.  You have played in other formations before, as your ex Christophe guitarist which was drummer and bass player in DISGUST.  Are there musical links between your previous formations and GERBE OF LIFE?
Can you quote some of your previous groups?  

Seb:   Letís say  it was quite natural for us to play a style of extreme music, as Christophe and I both played in brutal death or grind bands before.
For my part, it is not useful to give the names of the groups in which I played because these formations lasted little of time!

Micha:   My first  musical project was done in a brutal death band called Damnation, but it did not last more than 1 month, after that I arrived in Gerbe at the beginning of 2000.


4.  I know that you played a few gigs only, and this while the band was almost unknown in the Underground.  So, what do you expect from the forthcoming gigs ? (As well on the level of public as on a personal point of view?).  

Seb:   The first point is the metalheads doesnít move their arses to see some bands playing live, and then theyíll complain because nothing happens in the underground metal scene. In a personal point of view, the things I expect from the gigs are to meet othets bands, to spend some good time and to share our music with the crowd.

Micha:   That the music we play touches peoples, that they understand our creations and opinions, and that the crowd shredds everythings during the gigs ! 


5. Do some members of the band have got somekind of special
ę rituals Ľ before each gig ? Somethings that put you in good conditions ?

Seb:  No, we donít have aby ritual, the only thing (and I speak for myself here) is to give all that we can whenever the gig begins, and mostly to feel at this moment all the energy and power our music expresses, and to send it back to the public so that they become even more crazy (laughs)

Micha:  The adrenaline that grows on you puts you in conditions, it makes you able to express rage, angriness and all the feelings our lyrics deal with.


6.  Youíve just signed on SKULL FUCKED Prod and a Split CD with SUDDEN DEATH will be released in September.  How did you get in touch this new label? Do other labels offered you better proposals?  Why did you choose them (give us their conditions...).

Seb:   But itís thanx to you we got in touch with Philip of Skull Fucked (through the web), we received other proposals for example the one of Phil Fasciana of Malevolent Creation, and another American guy who started a new label, but the choice was made on philip because heís French (itís really easier to understand each others !) and he offered us a correct promotion deal, about 800 CDs must be pressed at the beginning, some pro Tshirts will be done, some stickers also, 10000 or 15000 flyers will be spreaded, and heíll buy some advertising space in some mags.

Micha: As Seb told, we found this deal thanks to you !


7.  What does the split with SUDDEN DEATH inspires you?  How did you know this band, and what do you think about them?  

Seb: It is clear that if we had the possibility to include oinly G .O.L on the C.D., that would have been a great satisfaction, but to begin a Split CD  is already more than good (especially as itís our first production, all the bands havenít got the opportunity to release something official with their first effort ! Itís very often necessary to release several demos to get a deal.). We knew this band through Philip , who already knew a bit their history. He sent us their promo and we followed his final idea for the Gerbe/ Sudden Split. It seems to me SUDDEN DEATH has released two self produced MCDs , so it can only be a positive thing at the level of the promotion.     

Micha:  Iíve got some good impressions about it, I didní have the opprotunity to liten to their music but Iím in a hurry to hear the finished product!  


8. Youíre currently writting new tracs for the next CD. What will be the differences between these new tracks and the one of your first CD ? (that are also on the split CD with SUDDEN DEATH) ? Will there still be some strong old school Grind touches, or will the style be more Indus/ Depressive ?  

Seb:   In fact, weíve realised after the recording of the CD the new tracks weíre writing had a more mature intensity, that is more rich. Still so brutal but in a more dominating way. (In fact, this is our feeling, itíll be peoples to judge when theyíll hear it). About our musical influences, we also have noticed what weíre playing sounds now more a bit more Death Metal but with a Grind touch ! (Itís difficult to explain it). There are still some very grinding parts, some groove moments and a few Black metal and indus touches. On the other hand, the Crust part arenít as important as in our previous compositions. (There are only 2 Crust riffs on 7 new trasks for now). The way our music evolves satisfies us for now, we even think this evolution is logical and it fits to what we awaited (isnít it the more important ?)

Micha:  The last tracks are more achieved, itís still so intense but in a different way, the 3 last songs are more technical and heavier but it still keeps its efficiency !


9. One of our next tracks is entitled "Phťnix" = phoenix  (that is an instrumental). Could we see a link with the fact the band kept on writing new tunes and promoting its music despite of the shits that happened to the band at the level of the materialís stealing, bandís members, etcÖ

Seb:  Youíre totally right, so many shits happened to the band (at every levels) that we began to be totally fed up, we hopefully had the support of several peoples because I think we cound have stopped it !
The phoenix represents the beast thatís gets reincarnated each time itís killed, but it becomes more powerfull at each reincarnation ! We thought this myth totally fit with the history of the band, we wanted a track that totally fits to this feeling of reborn and we think we feel somekind of a revenge taste on somethings that has crushed us for sometimes in this track weíve written (thatís quite heavy), this emotion is really present in some riffs.

Micha:  This track is quite vindictive, itís full of bitterness, and the fact we choose a song name in english includes one more mix at the level of the concept (as the lyrics are in french), itís still another unpredictable way of doing things.  


10. Can you tell us why your ex guitarist Christophe (that was also the bassist for a moment) went back into DISGUST ? As the music of the two bands is deeply brutalÖ maybe the reason for his departure is due to some personnal problems ? Or maybe he wants to play again some more classical Brutal death ?

Seb: Infact, he left for several reasonsÖÖÖÖ. his main reason was he wanted to try something different on a musical point of view (his depature was so sudden !ÖÖ..) despite of this, he choosed to help us for a few gigs, until we find a guitarist and a bassist , itíll make us able to promote the C.D (as weíve done a few gigs only) and to spend some more moments together on stage.

Micha:  He wanted to switch to anything else ÖÖÖÖÖÖ !


11. How does the fact of writin the lyrics happen in the band ? Is it the result of a bandís reflexion, or is it mostly due to one individualís thoughts ? Will your next lyrics be in a ę right in the face Ľ style, or is it going to evolve in a more ę moderate Ľ or not so direct way ? Gives us an idea of some of you next lyricsí subects !  

Seb:  Itís done in both ways in fact, weíve got the same ideas and thoughts about the writing of the lyrics, it makes the thing easier. The next lyrics will be a bit more psychologic, internal, but thereíll surely be one or two texts about more ę common Ľ subjects : one will deal with the death penalty, another one will be about the self conditionning of some peoples in their own negative spirale, a text will be about the free aggressivity while another one will deal with the internal emptiness (this one isnít written yet, and itís the same for the one about the free aggressivity, weíve got some work planned !) . There is also another one thatíll be called ę Clone Ľ and thatíll deal with the peoples who have got the feeling of being alive only in the material aspect of things and who totally loose their human side. There are a few more texts of this kind, in fact itís always concrete lyrics !

Micha:  In fact, Iíve written a text about the Death penalty, weíve got some other ideas, and my mother (yes !) has written a text about the conditionning and repetitive life of the individual in general. The next lyrics will be a bit more deepened on some personnal aspects.


12. Does it happen that you work back some older tracks ?
During the process of writing new tracks, does it happen that you didnít find any new riff fitting to the following of a given track and that you took back some riffs dating back to some years ? (Such as Azagtoth on "Formulas fatal to the flesh" with some riffs dating back to the beginnings of the band...).

Seb:  Yes it happens, and we arenít against it as it makes us able to always get an old feeling at the level of the compositions. All the more, youíre frustrated because you can use an old riff you found before and that wasnít fitting to a given track even if you liked it well. An old riff can fit well a new track and bring some more deepnes to it !

Micha:  It has ever happened !


13. There are quite a good amount of Brutal Death bands including some bass lines that are different from the guitar playing ( such as Steve Di Giorgio in DEATH, itís the best exemple!), and it makes the style of a band more rich.
But itís very rare with Grindcore bands. Did you ever think about adding some parallel variating bass lines that would add something more to your music, will keeping the efficiency and the impact of a grind track ?

Seb:   In fact in the grindcore style, we like a lot a bass sound that shredds your head, but if at a given moment the bassist wants to bring a bass part with a clear sound and if it sounds good, why not ! Our concept is the fact of mixing influences, Just  fit to this principle to the end

Micha:  Grindcore is a violent music and the fact of adding some more melodic bass parts wouldnít fit this style of music ! But why not, Iíve ever been thinking about adding some clear sung vocals on some parts.


14. I know GERBE OF LIFE actually asks all your energy and attention. But have you ever been thinking about what youíll do after the band ? (This surely wonít be your last band). If so, will you still play Brutal/ Grind, or will this be another style ?

Seb:  In fact, the band asks us a lot of attention these days. I donít know what the othersí projects are, but Iíll surely do something different thatíll one time more be mixing several styles of music and even of kinds of music. But itís actually too sonn to speal about it !

Micha:  Iíve got two projects : one that would mix brutal black, crust, and electro. The other one would be something a bit melodic, but it remains possible and impossible !


15. In your opinion, can a band mixing Nu metal and grindcore achieve something convincing ?
This is maybe the style that must be experimented to to succeed in doing something a bit fresh soundingÖ Do you think a band playing this style can be coherent, as well at the level of itís spirit than at the level of its music? (Some bands tried to mix Grind with Free Jazz (EXIT 13 in some parts), or with nonsenses (ANAL CUNT very often !), and it wasnít convincingÖ).

Seb:  You know, to mix several kinds of music you must know very well the styles of music youíre going to melt together.  You must know on which basis youíre going to begin and you must know well the subject to be able to create something thatíd be coherent. There must be, and this is also an important point, a cohesion and an osmose in the mixing of these styles.

Micha:  Itís always interesting to mix very different styles of music, as long as itís played with conviction and sincerity


16. On a Yahoogroup, Iíve seen peoples speaking about a new extreme musical mix : the ę Space crust Ľ.
In your opinion, is it somekind of joke, or maybe the guys must stop believing everythings theyíre told ?

Seb:  Iíd say I know abolutely nothing about it !

Micha:  I really havenít got any opinion about it !  and why not some Disney metal ? (laughs !)


17. What are the last underground bands that you discovered and that surprised or interested you ?

Seb:  At the time, I donít really know what happens in the underground. Iíve just discovered SUDDEN DEATH (itís logical isnít it ?) they play some good Death metal with Cannibal Corpse (all times) influences. They also include some Dismember touches for the tremolo riffs and for their sound, as a whole I could say their style sounds more Death metal (with an old school feeling) than Brutal death metal because they own a few blast parts only ( there are a few blasts, but itís far from being the dominating element in their music, but theyíve got a quality release !)

Micha:  Not a lot of things, only some bands such as TON, INSISION and a few othersÖÖ..


18. What are your future projects ? I let you conclude !

Seb:  At the moment, we want to promote the release of the CD doing some gigs. And later on we want to release another CD. And thanks for the time and energy you put into our band ! Their are still hopefully some peoples who give of themselves for the fact some others succed in their activities, itís gratifying ! We also use this opportunity to to say hello to Philip (From Skull, eh, next time donít forget your ę Vieux Lille Ľ and your ę Maroil Ľ (two french cheeses) theyíve polluted my fridge ! (laughs) and the most important : eat some froots as you really reek when you shit in the toilets, youíre rotting from the inside man ! (LAUGHS ! ! ! !)

Micha:  Thanks for the interview, our next project will be the release of our second CD, some gigs, and to change of sex ! (laughs)


WEBSITE: http://site.voila.fr/GERBE