How would you describe the sound of the new album in comparison to the first one?
Fred: “It’s different because we went with a different mixer. I would say the first one was more polished, and we had a lot of interludes and it was telling a story, so I guess it had to be ‘clean’ in a way. For Ashes we really found our sound, and with this record we really didn’t want to have the production that every death metal band seems to have these days. It’s great for them, we just wanted something different. What’s great about our band is that we have a lot of people whose musical identity really shines through. When Joey plays drums you know it’s Joey, and everything we do is still going to sound like us, but we wanted something very aggressive sounding.”
Joey: “I don’t like the sound of the word ‘polished’, and while we have a more raw production sound on this record our performances are all lined up perfectly. When you listen to it, it makes you move, and whether you’re playing brutal death metal or crossing over into black metal you need to be completely on point. You can’t drift whatsoever, and what’s best about Sinsaenum is that it’s always a workout, and it’s always a test. Even though the record is titled Repulsion For Humanity it’s humans that made this record, playing at their tightest.”
Fred: “Yeah, it’s a very organic album too. It’s not clinical in either production or performance. I was listening to a band – who I’m not going to name – and found myself thinking, 'For fuck’s sake, this is so sterile.' There’s no balls to it, nothing, and we’re completely anti-that. It’s good to listen to bands like that because it makes us very much aware of what we don’t want to do.”
A couple of the songs break the eight-minute mark, which is new territory for Sinsaenum. What can you tell us about those tracks?
Joey: “They needed to be that long. There’s no getting away from it. When the heart is pumping like that, your feet are on the bass drums or your hands are on the guitar strings and you’re all together you know when it’s going to end. I don’t care if it’s 15 minutes, eight minutes, three minutes, it doesn’t matter.”
Fred: “Exactly. Like we were saying before, there was no plan or format to stick to, and a bunch of them just ended up long and slow, and that felt right. The last song on the record, Forsaken, which is nearly nine and a half minutes long, was actually longer in the studio. At the end we had the riff on repeat and I just let Joey play on the drums forever, and we felt we needed to shorten that one a little bit – or the album would be fucking 90 minutes or something (laughs)."
The title doesn’t really need much in the way of qualification, but was there anything in particular that inspired it?
Fred: “Humanity. I wake up, I check my phone, I check my social media, I watch TV and I shake my head. Whatever is around me repulses me, and I guess that’s no different for Joey.”
Joey: “Absolutely. What’s great about the song by that name is the fact that it’s very true. It’s not just a title.”
Fred: “And it’s definitely not a gimmick.”
Joey: “No, it’s not that at all. It’s us saying what in the fuck is wrong with people? It’s not like we have to be all peaceful and everything, because we’re full of hatred and that drives us to do what we do, so we’re not peaceful people. But, at the same time there needs to be a measure of respect for people, but that gets disregarded all the time, and that really inspired that song.”
Fred: “And the good thing about Repulsion For Humanity and all the hatred we have is that we’ve turned it into something positive, in the end. Instead of going outside and shooting people we’re channelling all that hatred into a positive outlet, and I hope people catch on to that.”