Saturday, November 4, 2017

Afgrund (04.11.17)

Hi Enrico! How are you doing today man? Hope you're in the right mood, because right now we will talk about some really serious things.

E: Hello guys! I'm alright, some things are going great and some others suck... and i'm pretty sure you want to talk about those that suck... I'll try to be as accurate as possible.

Okay, so some time ago former band members (Scandinavian guys) re-created their own Afgrund. Wtf? What's going on there? As I know you have some kind of a conflict with them. So could you explain to us about all this shit, please?

E: It would be my pleasure to shed some light on the situation since those ex-members(A.Baier, P.Howe and P.Posti), to support their claim to the rights to the name 'Afgrund', are spreading the word that we Afgrund (international band formed in Sweden in 2006 that I joined in 2007) have disbanded; they've been messing up Afgrund's pages on Discogs, Metal Archives and other community sites with their names, faces and fake "official" web addresses, also spreading other lies i'd rather not dig into... 

The key point is: in September 2008, the band consisted of me(E. Marchiori), A.Baier and P.Posti (P.Howe was already out back then); when we three signed a contract for two albums with Willowtip Records, we all knew there were clauses about the ownership of band's name, stating: "Artist represents and warrants that Artist is the sole owner of any and every group name now used or hereafter adopted by Artist, including, without limitation, the name 'Afgrund' insofar as right of ownership can be acquired in a group name; so that no person or persons have the right to use said group name or to authorize or license its use in connection with Records", "If any member (the 'Leaving Member') comprising Artist shall cease to perform as a member of the group, the following provisions shall apply: (I) Artist shall promptly notify Company thereof and such Leaving Member may be replaced by a new member.  Such new member shall thereafter be deemed substituted as a party to this Agreement in the place of the Leaving Member and shall automatically be bound by all the terms and conditions of this Agreement in the place of the Leaving Member. Upon Company's request, Artist will cause the new member to execute and deliver to Company such documents as Company, in its judgment, may deem necessary or advisable to effectuate the foregoing sentence. Thereafter, the Leaving Member shall no longer be required to render his/her recording services hereunder as a member of the group, but Artist (and the Leaving Member individually) shall continue to be bound by the other provisions of this Agreement. (II) Each Leaving Member hereby relinquishes all of his/her rights in the group name to the remaining members of the group.".

A.Baier played only on "Vid helvetets grindar" and left in 2010, P.Posti played on "V.h.g." and also on "The age of dumb" that was released in 2012, few months before he left the band.  
I have been writing music and managing this band for 10 years now, I kept it alive, not without sacrifices, and continued playing with new members, because that's what bands do, sometimes one must change the line-up to the keep the beast alive. 

To release their album they should just choose another name and say they're "Afgrund ex-members"; It would be more of an adult and logical choice if you ask me... BUT, instead they chose to show up after years with very much arrogance, threaten me and spread the news they are now the "only official and original Afgrund"...  Both me and Willowtip Records clarified for them they don't have the rights to the name, because there's a signed contract! 
They are ignoring us at the moment, and hiding by blocking us on social media... i wish they come to their senses, stop this childish behaviour and just respect what they've signed!

Also, can you tell us who has all the rights for the bands material and for the band name? Do you think you will have to fight for the Afgrund name in court?

E: As evidenced by my previous answer, the name belongs to me(E.Marchiori) and A.Schweiger, our singer since 2010. 

About the material, it might be complicated for the first album 'Svarta Dagar' where, even thou my name is on the official american release, I didn't play or wrote any music there and I do not claim i did (on the contrary of what those ex-members say to people). 
For the three following albums, namely' Vid helvetets grindar', 'Corporatocracy' and 'The age of dumb', there is no arguement: i wrote 80% of the music. 
Those ex-members want to "reform a band" they don't even know all the songs, that's ridiculous... we hope they realize they have to change name asap and we don't have to come to court... however we're sure a judge would look to see what's on paper and the contributions to the band from me and Schweiger during the years! 

Let`s talk about line up problems. As I know, Afgrund has some problems with band members (for a few years) its line up is unstable. So did you manage to deal with this problem?

E: Yes, the line-up has changed often, but that's not a problem, it's the history of this band. I'm italian and lived in Sweden for years(not anymore) and when the band formed. Afgrund's members have always come from different countries, namely Italy and Finland, then also Austria and Ukraine. It's hard to keep a band alive when you live very far away from each other, but in most cases we use GuitarPro for writing music by distance, sending demos to each other, when stuff is ready we meet and record. 

As for playing live, we usually meet the day before the gig or tour for rehearsal; I must say, you need good musicians to work this way and every single one that's been in this band with me has been truly astonishing! But it can be hard to keep up, then again, some people change, some loose interest, bands change members ;)

Aanndd there is some rumours about a new album. Is that true? 

E: Yes, new recording coming soon... not a full-lenght album, but a very intense EP. 

Enrico, you`re also playing in another band and it’s not Grind, am I right? What sort of music do you play? 

E: Yes, I do have a couple of active non-grind projects, but i'm a little afraid of losing "grindcore credit" by revealing this to some "grindcore purist" hahaha... 

But yes, I play guitar in a surf-rock band called Banzai Hawaii, it's 60's party music with lots of echo and uber-reverbed guitar sound and... no distortion (stab!); I also have a jazz exotica quartet where I play xylophone and glockenspiel, very lounge chilly non-grindcorey stuff hahaha... 

Your noise is pretty popular and some of your albums are really hard to find. Have you thought about re-pressing (maybe with new covers and some bonuses)? 

E: Absolutely no reissues, the past is the past! ...and available for free at Afgrund bc
Also, you can keep up to date about Afgrund here: Agrund fb

Okay my friend, that is all for today. Huge thanks for clearing things up!

E: Alright, thank you for the interview! Best of luck with your 'zine, i noticed you just celebrated 4 years of intense activity. Keep up the good work! Cheers guys!