Jeffrey D. Adkins
Hailing from Russia and serving out a new brand of metal, Grenouer
is now making a name for themselves on the scene. With a few albums
out and a sound that’s growing more distinguishable, this band
is bound to get the attention of metal heads worldwide. I have vocalist
Andrey Merzlyakov (Ind), guitar player Motor and keyboard player Alexey
(NV) here to answer some questions for Metal Fanatix all over planet.
Metal Fanatix: Thanks for taking time to do this
Ind: Thank you so much for your interest in a Russian
metal combo. Russian bands are a rare guest for American metal resources.
So, it’s good to hear from you and nice that you appreciate
Metal Fanatix: First off, what made you want to be
in a metal band? And if you weren’t in a band what would you
be doing now?
Ind: I’ve been into metal since I was a kid.
I became really interested in bands like KISS, Black Sabbath, Iron
Maiden, Alice Cooper and of course Metallica, they pretty much inspired
me to put my own metal band together. I used to spend loads of time
playing metal air guitar with a hockey stick in front of the mirror,
I suppose this is when I realized my ambition to be a lead singer.
I’ve got to point out though that my first band was actually
a punk band, this was because we couldn’t play our instruments
particularly well yet, but the desire to play metal was still there.
To be honest, I really don’t want to think about what I would
be doing if I wasn’t in a band, it’s my life…I love
NV: I guess it was my addiction to music that got
the whole thing started for me, and later on I just came to realize
somehow that I wouldn’t be able to live without it anymore.
Fanatix: It’s hard to find a band that has a unique
sound since there is so much experimentation and hybrids of genres
these days. How would you describe your distinctive sound?
Ind: Experimenting with different genres is the best
way forward now, sticking to one genre really restricts you. To be
honest, Grenouer used to be a death metal band, but now we play a
variety of metal styles.
NV: Mechanical, tech, cold, abrupt, non-compromising,
that’s what Grenouer is about these days!
Metal Fanatix: It seems to me that you took a different
approach with “Try” than you did with “Presence
With War”? Is this so? Can you explain a little about the transition?
Motor: That’s so true! We are taking a different
approach and as a result we’re playing the sort of music we
want to play. I think a lot of it comes from the musical skills and
abilities that we’ve acquired over the years.
Ind: It’s happened very naturally. We opened
a new chapter of inspiration.
Metal Fanatix: Then where do you acquire your inspiration?
Anywhere out of the ordinary?
Motor: I just enjoyed listening to various types
of depressing music, for instance; John Zorn; Sadist; Fantomas; Bjok
and Massive Attack, as well as watching David Lynch movies.
Ind: Blimey, life is full of unexpected things and
you could probably find inspiration on the tip of a pencil if you
looked hard enough, but in reality we just rehearse a lot and compose
our songs in our rehearsal studio. Simple as that really!
Metal Fanatix: Has anything previously written by
Grenouer not made it onto a record yet? If so, are their any plans
to use it on future recordings? Have you guys thought of any songs
you might want to cover as a bonus track? What would that be?
We have at least 5 songs that are just the other side of
Grenouer. We performed them on stage and everyone was really surprised
how close to Alice In Chains and Stone Temple Pilots our approach
was. At the moment we’re not really ready to record any of it
yet, but I hope that someday we’ll carry on experimenting with
this sort of post-grunge sound.
Ind: We also recorded a cover of A-HA’s "Take
on Me" for our third album in 2000 and it was a positive experience.
Playing covers is not a problem, I remember Sepulturas’ “Roots”
song was a good ending for many of our gigs, but naturally we’re
more interested in playing our own material.
Metal Fanatix: Sorry to bring this up, but I was
quite surprised when I heard about the fire you guys had in your rehearsal
studio. I survived a fire at my friend’s house a few years ago,
and it has changed my outlook on life. Has the fire changed you and
the direction of the band? Was it hard to replace your equipment?
NV: So did I and since it wasn’t the first
time for me I find it all so predictable. The same sort of situation;
a big soviet factory where nobody gives a fuck about anything. The
first time I almost experienced death, but now I only feel that I
should work harder to get better equipment. Our equipment did suffer
some minor damage, but miraculously it’s still functional, despite
a somewhat wild “out of the flames” appearance. Replacing
it won’t be as hard as finding a really decent place to rehearse,
somewhere where nothing like this ever happens again!
Metal Fanatix: I also think I heard that you had
to cancel some shows because of the fire. Is this true? Will they
be made up in the future?”
NV: It is true, but there wasn’t anything particularly
special about those gigs anyway. It is quite depressing though that
we won’t be able to play live for quite a while yet.
Motor: Hell, this fire changed our outlook big time!
But what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger! At the moment we
are buying new instruments and equipment which requires a lot of money
but we’re handling it ok.
Ind: What’s more, we had to reschedule our
studio session because our budget has gone on other things now. The
band has taken a bit of a beating and it’s still too early to
think about how we’re going to make a complete recovery. At
the very least we’ve got to start rehearsing again and get back
into living and breathing music again.
Metal Fanatix: Live shows are a great way to spread
the word of a band. Describe what the band is like live? If you could
put together a world tour, what bands would you like go on tour with?
It’s quite hard to describe being on stage, it’s a very
emotional experience as all your senses are directed into the audience.
Motor: It’s quite crazy! There’s definitely
nothing like playing live!
NV: Everything is changing so rapidly and so dramatically
right now, in terms of sound and approach it’s all about further
experimentation, so it’s pretty hard to say how everything is
going to sound and feel in the end. I find the whole experience both
intriguing and stimulating.
Metal Fanatix: Have you guys created a music video?
If so, tell us about it…If not, explain what you would have
in it if you had an unlimited budget.
Ind: We tried to film some videos but the budget
was a major problem that limited the outcome and all in all we weren’t
too bothered about the end results. We do have a lot of footage from
gigs but that’s quite different from a real video.
NV: If that was the case I guess it would have been
fun to get some cult director, say, Anton Corbijn to shoot it, then
tell him that he is absolutely free to do anything he pleases. The
result would have been beyond even the wildest of fantasies, that’s
Metal Fanatix: It’s about time to wrap things
up, thanks for the interview!! Are there any last words you would
like to share with us?
Ind: Thanks a lot for your questions. Keep the world
metal and you’re welcome in Russia anytime as long as you’re
not afraid of large piles of snow and buckets of vodka.
Metal Fanatix: Thanks again…METAL!!!
For all the latest news & updates on Grenouer make sure
you check out the following website:
- Official website