- Hello Daniel, first of all I want to thank you for allowing me to interview you. Now, please introduce briefly "The Chasm" to the people who are not familiar with the band.
Hail and thanx for the interview Francisco…The Chasm is a Mexican band which resides in Chicago since 1998, we were formed at the end of 1992, so we have been into this battle for quite some time, we have released 1 demo and 7 CD's to date.
- The Chasm was doing great in the early years, what were the backgrounds and the main factor that made The Chasm leave Mexican lands?
Well, we were doing ok in Mexico, but I think our situation is much better now than in the past. And definitely one of the reasons (not the main one though) why we decided to leave Mexico was the lack of support down there, sure, there were people really into our music, but there were also a lot of shit talkers and detractors, all that is part of the past, and I see and understand things better now; those were different times, we were younger, and people reacted in so much different ways, etc.
It all served a purpose, we learned a lot from those years and it helped us to become a better and more destructive/stronger band. I'll say the main factor why we decided to leave our nation was because of the poor infrastructure of the music industry down there, as well as the poor economic situation of the country, which really affected us in many ways, specially in terms of production, recording and equipment.
We wanted to take the band to a major level, and we knew that in Mexico that wasn't possible, so in 1997 we took the decision to move to Chicago and we have never looked back, it has been one of the best things we've done for ourselves…
- What do you think would have happened if you had stayed in Mexico, do you think your band would be what it is today - one of the most respected and acclaimed bands in Death Metal?
Hard to say actually, but to be honest I don't think so, we may still be doing our own shit, if we didn't break up. But you know, is really hard to get noticed by an American or European label if you are a Mexican band, at least that's how it was back in those days, things are so different now; is really incredible how much shit has changed in the last 8 to 10 years.
As I said, if were still in Mexico we may be still playing our thing, not caring about anything ,as we have done before and now, that has been our main priority, to keep creating music for ourselves, Metal that we believe in. Also we may have been even more underground and unknown, who knows…
- I've heard most "The Chasm" albums and I notice a significant transition between them, I know progression is a natural state in most bands, but how did "The Chasm" evolved in such ways? What made the band go from Raw, almost Melodic Death to really technical and way more aggressive Death Metal?
Every time we have released an album, I think is a true depiction of how we feel and sense our existence in that specific period of time. The first 2 albums were very moody and dark, slower pieces, mainly because those times were much more difficult for us; personally I was in deep shit emotionally, so that shows a lot in the early music of The Chasm
- I've seen in your biography that your main influences are Black Sabbath, Destruction, Autopsy, Slayer, Dismember, Carnage, Mayhem, Celtic Frost, etc. Is there any special thing you praise from those bands? Their guts to do different music, their originality, their concept, what exactly?
I think that back in the old days everything was obviously fresher, music had more attitude and personality, it had a greater impact with us, especially at that age, the aura and power of those masters had a big impact in the very early years of our career.
- Now let's talk about your last effort - "The Spell Of Retribution". This album received awesome critics and very good response from the Metal scene in general, what does "The Spell Of Retribution" represents to you?
It represents what this band is all about, honor, fury, strength and dedication. Also it represents the end of an era, as well as the culmination of a very long journey, with this album we accomplished one of our biggest goals, to have a much more solid production, and to have our music treated with more respect (by the label).
We had the wicked world deal, so the objective was completed. Obviously even if we didn't have the deal our music will still be the same, but the situation went much better for us this time. As I said with that album we marked the end of an era…we are now in the process of writing new material, and when the time comes, the true believers will have a new experience with The Chasm sound.
"The Spell Of Retribution"
- What about the recording sessions, was it hard to do an album like this? How do you describe the studio days of "The Spell Of Retribution".
Those were very good times, full of hard work, but we also enjoyed every damn minute of it, it was a very long process to complete the spell, but it was totally worth it.
On a side related note, we have to mention that last august Jerry Soto (Owner of Soto Sound) passed away, he was definitely the best we have worked with, we had already planned to go back there to record the new chapter, but so it's life…honor to him…
- The Chasm has changed labels many times; does your current label really suit you? I mean, are you glad of what the label is doing to improve the characteristics and the commercialization of the band?
To be honest, we really don't care too much about taking the band to a "bigger" level, the bottom line for us is that they respect what we do, they support us and they pay for all the production, they also have very good distribution, that is enough to us. We don't have to worry anymore about recording expenses, or sending CD's and promos etc, we just fully concentrate in creating our music, wicked world is the best that happened to us, and we don't have any complains at all.
- How was the experience of playing in the Nuclear Holocaust Festival? Also, which has been the best concert The Chasm has ever played? The experience you enjoyed the most?
The Nuclear Holocaust was a devastating and totally positive experience not only for us, but for the whole US underground Metal scene, it was a real gathering of dedicated Metal heads, and the response was great, the highlight of the year for us, no doubt about it
I cannot really say which one has been our best concert, because I think every single one we've done had something special, since we don't play too often, every time we do it there's a very good atmosphere…a few that comes to mind could be when we opened for Unleashed in Mexico around 1993, or the times we played at the Milwaukee metal fests, those were insane…
- Can we expect any new "The Chasm" albums in the near future?
Hard to say, it has been a long fucking road and times have changed so much, as well as the situation in our personal lives, at the moment we are definitely trying to come up with something very unique for the new album, but if we find out that is not superior to our past releases, and it doesn't fulfill our souls, we simply won't record it.
Anyway, things are looking good so far, the songs are taking good shape, slowly but steady; we are taking our time, there is no rush, is too early to say when (if) is going to be recorded or released. I guess time shall tell, but we are working on it.
- One last question, is there any song in music history that you would have loved to write?
There are so many songs that really give me the chills, monumental pieces of grandiose composition….I can mention a very recent one, actually the first time I heard it I really thought, "Fuck, I wish I could've done that song", that is "Lochness" from Angel of Retribution.
- Thank you very much for your time, please add some final words for the Metal-heads reading this interview.
Thanx for your time and support Francisco, 100% appreciated. Salutes to all those who have believed and supported our crusade, to those who understand our sound, and to those who believe and comprehend the meaning of the Real Heavy Metal. For those hardcore followers all I can say for now is to be patient waiting for the new material, it will be a long time before we see a new The Chasm album, but if it becomes reality, the wait will be totally worth it.