Black&White view of animadversion on the world – interview with a band DOOM (UK)

At the beggining of 2016, January 8th, Croatian fandom of raw punk will have a unique chance to listen live one of the legendary Birmingham (UK) crust-punk band: DOOM. As far we know it, they never played in Serbia (except in Yugoslavia, with original line-up), and we can assume that Serbian fans will go toward to Zagreb, if they read this text. Kindly cheers and regards to Torpedo Syndicate from Zagreb, for organizing this event.

We are honoured, but at the same time, having a very tough task to interview one band that is known in some specific punk cliques, may we say devoters. It was very hard to skip some „cliche“ questions, as we are sure that they will better represent themselves, sharing with us their ideas, plans, something about crust-subculture and, of course, fanzines. Ladies and wives, prepare for doomed ride, our questions answered Stick & Scoot, rhythm-section par excellence!

First of all, greetings and regards in the name of editorial board of fanzine “Princip”! To people that gather in Anarcho/Crust circles, you are well known band, but I must ask you to introduce yourself to a wider audience, in the light of genre that you represent.

Stick: I've been in the band since 1987, playing drums, in ’87 more like trying to play drums. It's a case of enthusiasm winning over lack of talent in them days.

Scoot: Thanks for your interest, I am Scoot, the bass player, I have spent almost 8 years in DOOM since 1993-95 & 2010-present. 

In band’s biography stands that you wittingly abbandoned playing Crossover Metal and proceeded with awaken music genre as the Crust is. With statement that you are one of progenitors of grindcore, how that appeals to you, and, in other words, what induced band’s radical change of sound?

Stick: Our influences in the early days was Swedish hardcore bands, bands who themselves had taken their influence from Discharge, that combined with the spirit on anarcho punk, the ethics of DIY & a want for change & a nod to some of the metal bands like Celtic Frost fuelled our enthusiasm. "Crust" wasn't a defined "genre" as it is today, we were just playing what we wanted to hear/ liked to listen to, combined that with our lack of musical ability & money, it was always going to be raw.

Scoot: Bri (original member of the band) can answer this, regarding his impact & influence but for me in 1988 I was 14 & didn’t know much about the Swedish punk sound influenced by Discharge until I heard DOOM & it was rawness & anarchism taking to another level - something I felt I could identify with & a few years later personally become involved in.

Crust-punk music production is raw, shifting and intentionally “dirty”. Is it method for foundation of artistic expression or practical aspect of DIY philosophy, which is manifesto of entire punk movement? Which is your standpoint of DIY?

Stick: DIY to me means what it says & trying to forge something that is honest & not reliant on just the business side of it. We have always tried to go for the "family of friends" approach rather than sell our souls to a corporation

Scoot: It goes hand in hand for us, as the years pass certain view points remain but things do change wether we like it or not, be it the internet or younger peoples interpretation of the DIY movement compared to older people who didn't have the Net or regular access to everything, no matter what we do the DIY thing is always there & it is where we belong, but reaching out to a different crowd is something I also like to do, sometimes people out there aren't aware of the diy scene & it's great when you meet people who tell you that they got into the DIY community because of the band.

For you, Crust is the way to express your musical skills or something bigger, a movement with philosophical statements, battles against all injustice, lifestyle, what does it consider, if that is correct?

Stick: It is our way to shout about topics that vex us, to a soundtrack of angry sounding basic music. We make our music for ourselves. We put out what sounds good to us. If others like it to & agree with our message, that is a bonus.

Scoot: Lack of skills haha! Crust was a joke thing that we embraced musically & it became popular as a genre/clique/whatever - it’s all punk isn’t it? It was another extension (if that’s the right word) of the anarchy movement & here we are in 2015 - almost 2016 talking about it & making a noise.

Your visual identity is dark, full of grays and death, recognizable and way characteristic logo, which reflects on the covers of your albums. Who is in charge for graphic aspect of your music, and imagery as well? Considering that the picture amplify an impression that your music creates.

Stick: Discharge artwork was an early influence & in early days black & white artwork/ posters was the cheapest to produce (1st „Police Bastard“ pressing, the cover was a photocopy at local shop) I/ we like the starkness of black /white & reflects the starkness of the music & lyrics

Scoot: I always think about the DOOM Peel sessions I bought back in 1989 & in the insert drawn by our hero/friend SKINNY & something I guess Stick added that always left an impression with me & it was “cliched songs about cliched wrongs” - it is still very apt to this day, Skinny did the latest LP “Corrupt Fucking System” design, he still does a lot for bands/friends. We are all very influenced by the classic Discharge art & forever will be, but with DOOM input obviously!

And now, the most important thing: we are interested on your opinion about fanzines, regardless on type? UK is a cradle of punk-publishing, are fanzines helped band’s career? We found out just one interview presenting other band (Sore Throat)? If this is your first fanzine-based interview, we’ll be honoured!

Stick: I have been doing interviews for fanzines since ’85, they are another aspect of the DIY scene that makes/made it what it is. Like the music, there have/are some that are 'better' than others but it is an aspect of the scene that is done for the love rather than the money & for that reason I support them by answering.

Scoot: OK, I am going to give my honest answer here, back in ’87 I only had the local record shop, John Peel radio & a handful of older punks to show me what was going on, I was far too immature to understand the DIY scene back then , I personally used to buy Metal Forces magazine for 1 page of hardcore or reviews to try learn about extreme music or the underground, I wish I understood & respected fanzines sooner but I just didn’t have access or the knowledge about them, obviously I feel compared to the rest of DOOM (me being younger) I missed out but tried to catch up eventually, I cannot stress how much I appreciate & value fanzines since... The true heart of DIY. 

You have a web-site and Bandcamp page, in which amount Internet helps with promotion of a band? We assume that you prefer an oldschool approach and physical copies of CD’s, cassettes and vinyl records, which aren’t forgotten till today?

Stick: When we started, the cheapest/ easiest way to spread our music was cassettes so that's what we did, now it's downloads, so we do that. There are many ways to listen to music, some people champion different formats, we're just trying to keep up with technology whilst not losing ourselves in it.

Scoot: We move with the times & the Internet is an amazing way of having your music heard along with visuals & our ethics, so we have online stuff as well as vinyl, CDs etc.

Any comment on these awful events around the globe, terrorist attacks, murders, corruption of everything? How to fight against racism, fascism, wars? Will music save the world?

Stick: Some days it's hard not to just sit with your head in your hands & give in to despair. We may seem negative but we actually stand for a better world.

Scoot: No I don't think it will save the world, but together we can unite against it & try make our voices heard, I think sadly it's all gone beyond solutions & it's all about damage limitation now, I sadly cannot think of any solution in this day & age!

You will have first gig with current line-up on Balkans in January, 2016; how much do you know about Crust-scenes in other countries, especially bands from Ex Yugoslavia region?

Stick: I played in Zagreb twice when it was Yugoslavia & many times since. 

Scoot: We are excited to finally play the Balkans , DOOM played Yugoslavia with the original line-up in 1989 & from what they told me it was amazing, I have met people from the Balkans in Croatia & Slovenia & they are enthusiastic, so to finally play there is a dream come true, see you soon!

Future plans? You recently published an EP “Consumed to Death”, according to your web-site.

Stick: Keep going & doing what we do until either the world becomes a paradise & we have nothing to sing about or get too broken to play (I have my suspicions which will happen first).

interview by Desya Lovorov
Napomena: Intervju na srpskom jeziku možete
pročitati u 4. broju fanzina

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