ATARA este o trupa grindcore din Franta. S-au format in
2007. In 2009 au scos
primul lor material “Let the Beast”, apoi in 2011 au bucurat fanii cu un album “Human
Bulltrap” si un split cu trupa UNSU (grindcore.Franta) numit “Grindcore is a
violent Drug”. In 2013 baietii lansat un nou EP “Hang Them”. Despre ultimul
material discografic pot sa zic ca e scurt, are doar 6 piese, insa se canta cu
aceeasi intensitate grindcore cu care ne-am obisnuit. Ca sound a ramas acelasi
mix de grindcore, powerviolence, crust, fascore, hardcore care intotdeauna
bucura urechea. In piesa “Burden” se observa niste incursiuni downtempo dar
foarte expresiv si intens ceea ce iarasi nu face decat o atmosfera foarte
interesanta. Instrumental vorbind baietii si-au facut treaba ca la carte. O ard
cu blastbeaturi, cu riff-uri rapide de chitara + urletul intens al vocalistului
da acea doza de energie si agresivitate pe care doar grindcore-ul o poate da. Pe mine unu m-a rupt intreaga creatie a
acestor baieti, va recomand si voua sa-i ascultati, baietii fac asta doar din
placere, puteti downloada gratis materialele lor discografice de pe bandcamp
daca va intereseaza si va invit sa cititi interviul cu ei mai jos.
Antoine: Hey ! Thank YOU to give us the opportunity to act like rock-stars ! From this line, all we’re going to say will be false, pretentious and despising haha !
BB: For those who don’t know about Atara can you shortly describe you band?
Antoine: To be perfectly honest, ATARA it’s just 4 guys who love to hang out together, play grindcore, having good meals and drink quality beers... We all met à few months before we deciced to begin this band. Hugo ( 6 strings ov hell) and me ( Antoine by the way, drummer, manager, booker, and dictator) just seen our first band end badly. ATARA was already existing, with Derf ( screams, growls, jokes), Biwoo ( Schopenhauerian Infra-bass) and two other guys. The last gig with our first band, was with ATARA by the way ! So we knew since a little time, and a dark day of December 2007, we just had a talk about setting up a new band, fast and violent. We started to rehearse, and two months later we had our first scene ! We kept the name ATARA, cause it was already known around. And about what we (try to) do, I think it’s like any band which start to write music; Making stuff which is exactly what you want to hear; for us, intense, energic and powerful Grindcore. Even if we’re not very famous, we’re very proud about what we made till today. And it embraces the music and the friendship which came with it.
BB: The EP „Hang them” is out now, can you tell us about the writing/recording process of your new material? ( who write the lyrics and the music? )
Antoine: ’’HANG THEM” is quite particular. In fact, all the 6 songs were written for an album in the first place. But we are very sloooooooow guys, so some of these are a 2 years old... And the time passing, we just saw that we didn’t do anything real since a year and a half, just some shows here and there. So we decided to start a real project, composing a REAL album, something we began to write with one idea in mind; Our music had to improve in so much ways, so we had to improve. We’re really in the mood to bring something up with a personnality, something coherent from the first to the last second. Since our first EP in 2009, our releases are just a collection of the last songs we wrote. For this one, we want more than that. It’s going to respond to an esthetic we took the time to define, and the fisrt songs we already wrote leave us very good impressions, and comfort us in the way we had made a good decision. But the HANG THEM songs didn’t respond to that esthetic. And for us they were too good to be put in a closet ! So we decided to record it, and give it some celebrity !
About the writing process, it’s real simple. We go in rehearsal, and just say ”hey, let’s write some new stuff !” haha. We throw a riff, and work around it. For the lyrics, I’m in charge for most of it, Derf writes some sometimes. Until recently, we didn’t had any, we were juste seeing the voices as another instrument. It was cool for a moment, but it showed its limits. So we decided to start writing Grindcore poetry haha !
Antoine: I would say it was the convergence of many things. Before we entered ATARA, we were curious about what Grindcore was with Hugo. This guy is alwas the first to discover new things and share it with us. At this time, it was ”Grind Finale” from NASUM. He listened to it, been blasted haha, and lend it to me. It was my first step into this crazy microcosm haha ! ROTTEN SOUND came right after, and during a long period, it was the only things we listened about. And when we started ATARA, we all shared our influences. So we discovered BLOCKHEADS, which remain the first and main influence of Biwoo, and legends as NAPALM DEATH or BRUTAL TRUTH, which are a bigger part of Derf’s culture. He’s older than us, so he saw all theses bands appearing, and the impact they had.
But this is just the background. The real thing that gave us the will to play Grindcore, was a show in Angoulême ( the city where we was living at this time), with YATTAÏ early 2008. It was our second gig, we were just playing proto-Grind, and these guys already had (and still have) a very good reputation on the french scene. We just took the beating of our life. Everything was there ! Violence, intensity, emergency, and a big part of fun. That night, we just said ourselves ” We must go that way. Our own, but the result have to be the same.” And here we are today. YATTAÏ are now very good friends of us, they juste released an new LP ”Fast Music Means Love”, and if you didn’t listened to it already, go on, it’s pure madness.
BB: How your local grindcore scene looks like? Can you recomend some french grindcore bands?
Antoine: For me, it looks like very good. A french Grind compilation had been released by Kaotoxin Records a few months ago, with almost 40 bands. And 40 bands with a real activity. Go check this out, it’s a good pictures of what’s happening right now in the french scene. And there’s also some bands who are not on this compilation but which are really amazing. RATBOMB, CHIENS, WHORESNATION, BLACK CODE... BLOCKHEADS and INHUMATE remains the biggest and oldest french grindcore bands, and still the best for me, especially BLOCKHEADS. We played twice with them, and twice it was breathtaking. They don’t do a lot of shows, but you can be sure that everytime it’s gonna be a killer one .
But if I should recomend some bands, it shoulb be these ones. All the ANGOULEME TRASHCORE TEAM, which includes YATTAÏ (Grindcore Tornado) GRÜNT GRÜNT (Grïnd Grïnd) and VENGEANCE ( Grind / Powerviolence); And of course NOLENTIA, our buddies. These guys are our best friends on the scene with YATTAÏ, we have so good memories with them. And they just gave the longest name to their last full length: May the hand that holds the match that will set the world on fire be blessed above all. WE LOVE YOU GUYS !!!
BB: Besides your musical activity what do you do?
Antoine: We’re all members of the most violent bikers club of the french Wild Southwest. Drugs, guns, girls, shootings. Sons of Anarchy are pussies beside us. That’s what we say to everybody. In real, two of us are teachers or working in education, one’s working for a cartoon and animation studio, and the last is supervisor in a factory. We are now in 3 different cities, with absolutely not synchronized schedules. So if we are so slow, here’s the main reason. We have to plan weeks before for a rehearsal, even more for a show. But we still succeed in !
BB: Do You have any plans for touring? Would you like to make an East European Tour? Maybe a concert in Chisinau, Moldova?
Antoine: We think about touring. And that’s all ! As I said before, it’s very complicated. We did a mini tour with NOLENTIA in summer 2012, it was wonderful. Great shows, great bands ( CONSTANT VULSE, this is for you guys ! ) plenty of cool people. If we have the occasionn the time, and the logistic, we’ll jump in it. And East Europe and Moldavia, for sure. We know that extreme music is acclaimed in your area, so it could be a very nice experience. But the resons stays the same. It’s very hard for us to plan a tour, the maximum we’ve done, it’s 3 days. All that we hope, is that one day it becomes easier as the days we begun. We made twice the number of shows in our two first years than in the three last !
BB: Can you tell about a funny or crazy thing happened to you in a tour/concert?
Antoine: I’ve got one,but it’s crazy and sad at the same time. In 2008, we had a show with YATTAÏ in Niort, it was the starter of our first mini-tour. First suprise, the bar owner didn’t promote the show. No flyers, nothing. We kenw that it wouldn’t be THE show of the year, but we didn’t expected anything good from the moment we arrived there. The only thing we’ve been counting on, was that it was a free show, and that some curious with nothing to do on a Friday night came to see us. We just dreamed about that haha. And it was a nightmare ! 3 drunk guys, 1 bum, 5 friends from the area. Food was awful, not any cash at the end... Our shows were good, and things became mad from the moment we begun to put ou gear in the van. Beside the bar, there was an afro/carribean night-club, and some people hanging out and drinking beers in front of. One of the drunk guys from the bar we played in was also outside, drunk as fuck. He looked at them and yelled: ” Hey niggers, my car ain’t a sofa !!!” One of them were just half sit on the trunk of car ! We were just shocked ! In a way, one of the reason we’re proud to play Grindcore, it’s for the values it’s conveying. No one must forgot that NAPALM DEATH our gods among the others, were from a proletarian neighbourhood in Birmingham ! People with an history, who are politically engaged, and still fight for social equality, tolerance, and respect. We all have these values in common in ATARA, and it’s the basis of most of our lyrics. We can’t stand that kind of behaviour, even more from someone who is not even able to put himself together. He was drunk since the moment we arrived at the bar, in the end of the afternoon ! So the guys from the afro night club, most of them were black, just looked at him, finished their beers, and ran towards him the bottles in the hand. The drunk guy ran too, but inside the bar, and tried to hide somewhere ! They found him, and when they triend to pick him outside, the bar owner yelled at them ” No niggers in my bar” a baseball bat in the hands ! we just said ourselves ” WHAT’S HAPPENING HERE !!!” We knew that it’ll be going really bad, so we packed the fastest we could. I was right beside all my cymbals stands, when a really, really, really massive guy just came next to me. He watched my stands, and I think that in a second, he saw what all he could have done with it and the drunnk guy. So I threw it in the van, and when we said ” Go !” a car just drifted in front of the bar! A guy came out (the car was still drifting !!!) and screamed ” Who wants to fight ??? Who the fuck called my friends niggers ???” He went directly to the trunk, and when he was on the point to open it, an other guy came out of the car and said ” Don’t do that here ! Are you out of your mind ???” We never knew what was hiding in this trunk, I don’t think we still want to know now !. Right after that, we jumped into the van and the car, and left. It’s the craziest thing we saw on the road. Not a really good memory, but its craziness makes it look like to a scene from a Tarantino movie ! And it was the only time we saw such a racist behaviour. We don’t even know what happened to him.
BB: Except the grindcore, what kind of music do you like? For example when you’re on the road to the concert what do you listen?
Antoine: We listen to a lot of stuff. And surprisingly, since a few years, a lot less Grindcore. It’s not that we don’t like it anymore, just that we found the bands which are the biggest influences for us, and which helped us to build our identity. We stay in touch with what’s happening new in the scene, but not as much as before.
Three of us are really into french Black Metal; there so much good bands. DEATHSPELL OMEGA, BLUT AUS NORD, AOSTOH, the perfect balance between dark and poisonous atmosphere, and true violence. Even if were are (and will be) a Grindcore band, these are very inspirationnal for us. Beside, I think that if we had to share with you our 4 discographies, you’ll find everything. Metal, punk, hardcore, doom, pop, indie, electro, hip hop, drone, jazz, folk, reggae... and all that’s existing in between. So on the road, it’s just a mash up of all the things we love, and we want to share between us. And sometimes we agree on a band haha.
Personnaly, I’m convinced that there’s good in every stuff. If the will of making music is authentic, in the idea of bringing the best thing that could, there’s a lot of chance that I’d be interested in. Recently, I’ve been into french Hip hop, and british folk at the same time. And in each, there’s was a thing that made me think ” Wow, this shit is serious !” The type of music isn’t important, as long it’s made with honesty.
BB: Thank you very much for talking to us! You have a message for metalheads from Moldova?
Antoine: Thanks to you ! Been a real pleasure to answer to your questions. People of Moldova, we’ll try to come in the future ! Keep listening to music, everything, be proud of it, come to the gigs even if you don’t know the bands, be curious, because there’s no purpose to play music, if there’s nobody to play in front of !
Antoine // ATARA crew
Nick aka Fieldy
Nick aka Fieldy