Let’s kick off this interview with a question about the formation of Incinerator. Can you tell us how and why the band got together (in 2013 I think)?
We've known each other for over 25 years and have been in bands together through the years. Pure metal bands but also hardcore/crossover oriented stuff. Necromancer and I played together in a (death metal) band in 1990, which was my first band. Anyway, in 2013 Jackhammer quit as guitarist in a speed/thrash band because of musical differences. He started a new project with Necromancer. Once they had the music ready they asked me to step in as the vocalist. I had no experience doing grunts but it worked out really well. Out of those first five tracks two already existed. 'Bestial Stench' is from 1991 and was used by Necromancer's and my first band. 'Human Garbage' is even older and back in 1987 Jackhammer's first band already played that song.
Your first release was a digital demo in 2013 and the ‘Human Garbage’ demo in 2014. Looking at the track list it contains the same songs. So, I was wondering if you could explain the difference between these demos?
The recordings are the same but the track list differs. The digital version has the extra song 'Bestial Stench'. Due to time limitations we decided to skip that song for the vinyl and cassette editions.
’Human Garbage’ was released on tape by Dawnbreed Records and as a 7” through Wolfsbane Records. Did those releases gain a lot of extra interest?
Definitely! We didn't expect it would spread that fast. We collectively decided not to play live and when we put our songs online I immediately was contacted by Jeff of Dawnbreed/Wolfsbane. He was very enthusiastic and pretty soon 100 cassettes and 500 vinyl 7” EPs had been pressed. 'Human Garbage' got great reviews worldwide and it sold-out fairly quick.
Now you have recorded your first full-length ‘Stench Of Distress’. I think you recorded that one in your own studio like you did with ‘Human Garbage’, right? Can you tell some more about those recordings? Did you invest a lot of time? Mix and master were done elsewhere I think?
We're quite stubborn as far as that is concerned and we don't want to and don't have time to be in a studio for days. That only leads to “distress” haha... The recording process was more of the same. Over a certain period Jackhammer and Necromancer recorded all drum-, guitar- and bass-parts at the home studio. Finally some vocals were recorded and we took the whole to Double Impact Studios in Oentjerk. There we re-amped, mixed and mastered the recordings. We have known those guys for years and they exactly know what we want. This works out for us and leads to the best result.
The result is great if I may say so. Raw and filthy as it should be. Have you been inspired by other bands when it comes to your sound? What influences you guys in general by the way?
The 'Human Garbage' demo had the well-known Swedish “Stockholm” sound, which we really liked. But since we don't want to sound like thousands of other bands we decided for a thrashier sound rooted in the mid 80s for the full-length. But with that great modern, much clearer sound.
We are really pleased with the result. Too many bands try to copy that old sound and don't succeed so they don't sound authentic. Our taste in music is very wide. For Incinerator Slayer is the main influence for all three of us. Jackhammer is the thrasher among us and you don't have to ask him to listen to a new Suffocation song for instance. Personally I listen to a lot of old death metal and it's amazing how timeless and ingenious a lot of those albums still are after 25 years.
Why did you decide to record two songs that already were on the demo for the full-length as well, by the way?
We simply thought those songs were too good to not record again. Besides that I wasn't completely satisfied with the lyrics and vocal-lines. So this was a great opportunity to do it better this time around.
How did you get in touch with Raw Skull Recordz who releases the album? And how is it working with a rather new label so far?
Jackhammer came in contact with Rai of Raw Skull Recordz and both him and us were enthusiastic to do a full-length. Rai is doing a great job promoting Incinerator worldwide amongst the overfed thrash/death audience.
You are a three-piece and I was wondering if you guys perform live as well? If so, do you use a session bass-player for instance?
After the recordings of the demo we tried to get a stable line-up together. People did want to see us perform live. In some way it seems we can't make it work with external musicians. Due to being busy with work and family we decided unanimously not to play live.
Some of you guys are active in other bands as well. Can you tell a bit more about that? Is it easy to combine multiple bands?
With Necromancer I did an obscure black metal project in the vein of Hellhammer and DarkThrone, but that's on hold. We've got all the time to focus on new Incinerator material for a next album.
I guess that’s it from my side. Anything else you’d like to add?
Thanks for your interest. All self-respecting death/thrash freaks need to listen to 'Stench Of Distress'! Stay Brutal!