Battlerage Drummer Francisco Vera Talks New Album "True Metal Victory" And Chilean Heavy Metal
The Chilean heavy metallers from Battlerage dropped their third full-length album "True Metal Victory" last year through Metal on Metal Records. After the release of the album, drummer Francisco Vera corresponded with Metalunderground.com to discuss the true metal horde's place in the world of heavy music and the overall metal scene in Chile. Check out the full interview below to find out about the creation of "True Metal Victory" and taking lyrical inspiration from the Robert E. Howard characters of Conan the Cimmerian and Thoth-Amon.
xFiruath: For those not familiar with Battlerage, can you give me a brief history of the band?
Francisco: I started Battlerage back in September 2002 as a personal project that soon took form. After recording the "Metal Slaughter" and "Return of the Axeman" demos in 2003, we began the writing of our first album, "Steel Supremacy," that hit the streets in 2004. Then we recorded the "Battlefield Belongs To Me" EP in 2005, and in 2007 we signed with Metal On Metal Records. They put out in 2008 the demo compilation "The Slaughter Returns," and in 2009 our second full length, "Blood, Fire, Steel." Last year we wrote and recorded our third album, "True Metal Victory," which was released by Metal On Metal Records in October 2011. We have been through many line up changes, and the current line up is:
Fox-Lin Torres: vocals
Alejandro Ugarte: Guitars
Felipe Vuletich: Bass
Francisco Vera: Drums
xFiruath: When did you write the songs for this new album and how do you write music as a band?
Francisco: I wrote some songs in 2008, 2010 and 2011. Basically, I do every song and lyrics, and then we arrange it in the rehearsal room.
xFiruath: Where did you record the album and how did the recording sessions go?
Francisco: We recorded "True Metal Victory" in 15 Hz studios. The sessions were great, everything went according to plan. We had no problems at all.
xFiruath: What sort of ideas do your lyrics cover and is there a specific theme to this album?
Francisco: My lyrics talk about war, freedom, metal and horror. These are the main themas on every Battlerage album, and I'll continue this way in the future. There isn't any specific theme in the album, just in "The Book of Thoth" trilogy, about the genesis of Conan the Cimmerian's worst enemy, Thoth-Amon. It's based on a graphic novel that caught my attention in 2010, mainly because Len Wein, one of my favorite comic writers, was involved in it. It's a story of treason and revenge, about the endless search for power at any cost, and is written in a very "Howardian" way.
xFiruath: Tell me about your local metal scene. What’s it like to be a metal band in Chile and how supportive are the local crowds?
Francisco: I don't care about the scene in Chile, I really don't feel as a part of something. Battlerage stands alone. But if I were to recommend some bands... you should check Attacker Bloody Axe (thrash metal), Marcha Fúnebre (epic doom metal), Axe Battler (NWOBHM influenced metal), Metal Grave (in the vein of Mercyful Fate) and, of course, the veterans of Vastator. The crowd support is great, they always go to see us play live.
xFiruath: Do you get the opportunity to play outside Chile often?
Francisco: No. I hope this will change in the future.
xFiruath: Do you have any upcoming live shows in support of the new album?
Francisco: Not at the moment. However, we play on a regular basis, so we are constantly showing all our stuff, old and new, live.
xFiruath: What music are you personally listening to lately and do you have a favorite/least favorite album of 2011?
Francisco: I'm always listening to the old classics like Manowar, Omen, Manilla Road and Running Wild. Lately, I've been listening to the bands that keep that flame alive like Argus, Hour of 13, In Solitude, etc. My favorite albums from 2011 are Outrage‘s "Go to Hell" and Manilla Road‘s "Playground of the Damned.“ I don't have least favorite albums.
xFiruath: Anything else you’d like to discuss?
Francisco: Thanks for your support. I hope everyone reading this interview will try to get their hands on our new album, "True Metal Victory." Stay Metal!
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