Sepultura: Nobody Lives In The Moment Anymore.....

"We Have A Few People To Chase, Including The Cavalera Brothers"

I could go through the entire history of Sepultura; throw at you an introduction highlighting their achievements, their legacy painted with controversy, the Cavalera brothers, and the rise of one of the biggest bands Brazil has ever seen... but do we really need to? Unless you have been living under a rock this is a history lesson almost every metal head knows quite well... Metal As Fuck caught up with Andreas Kisser last week as the band prepares for South Africa, a continent; like Australia the band have not seen for over a decade....  

It has been eleven long years since Sepultura last graced Australian shores! In fact the band has a few places on the cards to revisit in the upcoming weeks. How are you feeling about the tour? “We are very happy, very excited to get back to Australia, eleven years has been too long. We’ve changed labels of late and now have the set up we need to be able to visit these places again and are heading back to South Africa, New Zealand and Australia”. Brazil; the homeland of the band and a big part of the bands identify; how often do you like to play shows in Brazil? “Yeah we still live in Sao Paulo, so we play a lot here because in Brazil; it’s not like other places, we don’t need to spend weeks away at a time so we stretch the Brazil shows out. We’re at our best right now, Brazil welcomes us with open arms, its great; 30 years of a career, we have a very strong line-up and our label is great for us. In Brazil we have a lot going on, we keep busy, 2014 has been a fantastic year for Sepultura and we’re also looking forward to the Sepultura documentary which is in the works”.  

What can you tell us about the Sepultura Documentary, how much will it cover? “The beginning of Sepultura is pretty well known and we have spoken about it all but I guess, you know of course we’ll touch on the career but we mainly want to concentrate on Sepultura now, where we have come. A lot of media that has been kept in the draws for years will be coming out, the director of the project has been collecting statements from many people who had an input into the band, we still have some people to chase, including the Cavalera brothers. I think it will be very interesting, to show this incredible story of this Brazilian band who came out and did what they did, it’s a unique story”.

The band does have an amazing history, Sepultura have basically reached heavy metal nobility – with the documentary coming to life and you’re having to think about the bands history do you find yourself thinking about the influence that the band has had and/or the legacy the band have stamped in the history books? “Oh wow, yeah, it’s amazing, mind blowing really, it’s such a great motivation to look back and see what we achieved, the good stuff and the bad. I guess the documentary is going to go through that; a heavy metal band and the extreme music that incorporated so many different styles, so many different musicians we worked with; I guess that’s why we survived so long, regardless of the things that happened inside and outside of the band, we’ve had so many changes along the way. When we started we only had a fax machine as the most technological device for communication and then came the computer, the CD, the download, Grunge [laughs] we survived everything because we keep doing the stuff that we like”. It’s funny you mention the changes in technology, in thirty years technology has gone crazy, how would you describe it – is it easier now than back in he day? “It’s hard to say, I mean it’s hard to imagine how we can function without a cell phone or write an e-mail, using Skype now like we are, it’s fantastic, we’re on opposite corners of the world, its great! Ten to fifteen years ago when we would tour Europe, we could only call home once a week or whenever we could find a pay phone. We enjoy both, the old days and today, I mean the pressure is a little heavier now though, information is so quick now so if you don’t reply to an e-mail within two days you’re already losing [Laughs] so I guess ‘time wise’ we enjoy the older days it was a little slower, you could breathe a bit and enjoy the momentum. Head to a restaurant and everyone is on their phone doing something, nobody really lives in the moment anymore...”

The latest album, The Mediator Between The Head & The Hands Is Always The Heart I’m going to call it The Mediator for the interview purpose because it is a long title, but a title in which has a significant meaning. It has been described as a culmination of the bands history, would you agree with this statement? “Yeah I think so, because while we researching for the documentary we went after our archives and we relived many memories and moments of our past and that brought a lot of nostalgia back for us so it was a big influence on this record, I think we relived some of the moments in the past, all the bands we used to listen to, how we would practice, how we worked, so it was really cool to have this sort of revival, and remember things that were sleeping in my mind, so it naturally slipped into this record. Our new drummer also Eloy Casagrande, he is a machine. He knows the band, he loves the band. He brought a lot of energy to the band, he has only been in the band for three years but there is no doubt that he has brought a lot of new possibilities to the band. There are many different factors that have made this album really special”.

What did you want to get across with the album? “It’s all in the title, if you have information in your head and action in your hands, you are nothing more than a robot, you know, a machine. The machine will work according to that direction. The heart is the most important thing that represents the human ability; questioning, revolting, inquiring, fighting. Don’t accept everything that is told to your mind, and that is the main influence behind the album, it’s not just that we liked the movie, we speak about everything, the phrase is very powerful and really reflects what we see today, talking about technology before.... Just the constant move away from reality, Google glasses, what the fuck, we lack the human touch and don’t feel the moment and that is important to us to not lose that human ability”.

The influences of Sepultura hold an integral part in the music and still to this day you guys could talk about your favourite bands all day long; do you still hear remnants of your influences in the music of Sepultura? “Oh yeah, we always keep our minds and ears open, seeing and meeting our fans face to face, I don’t think there is a more stronger feeling than that. We always want to learn new ideas, new music, meeting people all over the world regardless of politics and religion we have this music connection and it is a privilege to be a musician a part of a band like Sepultura and we still enjoy ourselves so much, now more than ever, it’s a great momentum and we’re grateful for the opportunity to get back to Australia. It’s been a long road but a special one and we learn with everything. The good, the bad”. What has the music of Sepultura done for you personally? “Wow! Almost everything, the music of Sepultura took me by the hand [Laughs] I’ve travelled the world, learnt new languages, new instruments, new cultures and I still have that. It’s an experience of life and people around the world know and welcome Sepultura, it’s an amazing feeling and I am what I am because of the music of Sepultura. I built my family around what I do, three kids and a wife and yet everything is connected to my profession. So yes, everything”. [Laughs]      

You'll be travelling quite a fair bit for the remainder of 2014, what is scheduled and how is 2015 shaping up? “We head to South Africa next week, Australia, New Zealand and a few gigs are scheduled in Brazil. We have already been confirmed for Wacken 2015 and Bloodstock Festival in the UK. A new DVD is coming out in September; a recorded set of the last Rock in Rio, with Sepultura and Les Tambours du Bronx and that will open a lot of opportunities for that show to be presented next year. Also we will be working on new sounds and new material for a new album, but I’m not in a hurry [Laughs] We’re just going to enjoy the momentum right now, the album is very strong and the label is doing a great job, so we’re going to stretch The Mediator as far as we can”.