Onslaught – Chaos Thrash Reigns Part IIMonday, 3rd November 2014
Dead Rhetoric: I do remember a time in the 1980’s when if anything was metal- people flocked to it. There wasn’t this sub-division or fracturing of metal styles…
Rockett: I remember back into 1983, there was a load of us doing the tape trading thing. Myself, Bill Steer, Shane from Napalm Death, Pushead, Katon from Hirax, a little group sending tapes around. You look at what all of those people have done, and it’s pretty cool. That’s not going to happen today. There were loads of people involved, absolutely amazing how it worked. It was a forerunner into illegal downloading I guess, but these were tapes that were twentieth hand. So people would buy the records because they didn’t want to hear the tape hiss.
Williams: It was the only way that metal got into places like Russia and the Iron Curtain.
Rockett: We went to Russia for the first time in Onslaught last year. One of the guys was an Onslaught fan from back in the 1980’s, he wanted to book us and take us there. It was a personal mission for him and his friends. They put us in this amazing apartment- and it was kind of secret. The doors were locked, they were saying when they got into The Force in 1986 on tape, they had this little hideaway. They would listen to thrash metal, and if they got caught, they would have been thrown into jail, because it was that subversive in Russia. There was an old guy who could press vinyl in their town- so they got copies of The Force and they hand drew the sleeves, absolutely incredible. The dedication is amazing.
Dead Rhetoric: What does the next 12 months look like for Onslaught in terms of promotion and touring endeavors?
Rockett: We finish up in North America on the 26th of November, and then we go down to Brazil for 2 weeks. This is the fourth or fifth time we’ve been to South America, we have been down there regularly since 2008. The fans are great, the climate is great, the food, and the beer is great. It’s paradise down there. I would like to get to Australia and New Zealand, which we are in discussions about. China is another one, but whether that happens ever is up in the air. I know the government wants to know your lyrics, and anything controversial you have no chance. India is another one… we have played in 60 odd countries.
Dead Rhetoric: Considering all the record labels you’ve been on through the years, what are your thoughts on AFM your current label?
Rockett: They kind of remind me of the time we were on Music For Nations back in the day. A small label where you know everyone at the label, they are very much into what they do; they are there because they like music. We are a bigger fish in a smaller sea, whereas Nuclear Blast is a massive label and every thrash band wants to be there. We would probably get a little lost there even though they are a fantastic record label. We feel happy with AFM, they are very strong in Germany where they are based and it’s the biggest market for metal in Europe. They give us a lot of help; we send them everything we do for ideas.
Williams: They communicate with you directly which is nice, all the way to the guy who runs the label.
Dead Rhetoric: Is the hope to have a new record hit the streets at some point in late 2015?
Rockett: They are asking for it yeah.
Williams: The first thing we have coming out is a new live CD/DVD. It was filmed on the last UK tour at the O2 Academy in Bristol, and some of it filmed in London as well. It’s being mixed and mastered at the moment. We took out a big stage show, a lot of lights on the stage. We got fans to film some stuff, moshpit cameras as well.
Rockett: They are pressuring us for a new studio album in 2015, but I don’t think that’s going to happen. We are getting offers for next year, and we have been offered things in the states for April/ May, festivals booked in Europe, another short run. If the demand is there, you have to take it – it’s the way we can make a living as a band. Obviously we have to make another record, we like to look at a 2-year cycle for touring and then making another record. If you churn out a record every year, they are going to kind of get samey and ideas are not quite as good as they should be. 2-3 years, you are fresher. We are up to 4-5 months of full on touring when you add everything up, but its spread out over the course of 12-18 months. We are not going to complain.
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