– First of all, thank you so much for answering to our interview. And tell us, how is the band currently doing with its newest release?
First and foremostly it isn’t a band, it is just myself with some very special guest.
– Tell us a little bit about the album’s process until you finished it. How did this opus born?
The album was written over one and a half years and was done in various studios one song at a time. I produced all the tracks and it really is the first Warfare album in 25 years.
– Before going into detail about the album, I would like to ask you about its title, that word game with the name of the band and yours, which can be read in two different ways but, after all EVO is the same as WARFARE. Did you want to state with this that the whole album is something only you had in mind? (I hope I have explained myself right).
Yes over the last 25 years I have had many requests to re-record music, to produce music, to play for name bands all of which I declined and then it all came back to me in a dream, the next day I wrote down some lyrics then I dug my old bass guitar out of the garage, this had never been played for 25 years and I asked a good friend of mine Fred Purser (Ex Tygers of Pang Tang) if I could come to his studio and plug it into his valve amp. I played the first chord albeit a bit rusty and as I play with a 50p coin I nearly blew the fuckin roof off and then the Noise Filth and Fury was back in my blood.
– And already delving into the record, I have had the chance of listening to it and in line with the previous answer, it could be titled both EVO or WARFARE, because your spirit is 100% here, and the classical essence of the band. I guess this is what you were looking for?
Although this is a solo album it’s title as it suggests is Pure Warfare and this is the follow up all the fans thought would never happen.
– On the album there is also place for thicker, and darker moments, getting close to real Thrash Metal. For instance songs like «Black», «Carnage» and «Strangled» build a whole different atmosphere still without loosing the essence and rage. What could you tell us about these songs?
The songs were written from my darkest dreams I am a man that walks a very thin line in between brilliance and insanity. The album is meant to be original dark and filthy just like the first four Warfare albums.
– But if there is something the album really has, it is the Punk Rock and danceable essence, as tracks such as «Pure FIlth» and » Burn out» show. Tracks to drink beer and raise hell to. Is this the WARFARE stamp? Is this the kind of tune you like to create?
Yes the louder the better.
– In broad strokes I only have to ask you about «Stardust», a song that reminds a lot to those small ALICE COOPER pieces, creating darkness. It is short and theatrical. Did you think about ALICE COOPER or did it just come out like that by coincidence? I must say it has turned out really great.
No I had no thoughts of Alice Cooper whatsoever the album really is a concept about life, the life that stinks of the street, however stardust is the finale to the lyrical content of the concept which when you buy the album and read the lyrics on the sleeve those who have the intellect will grasp the reality of hell.
– As I have the chance of interviewing you I would not like to miss the opportunity of talking about the early days of the band. How did the idea born and how did the beginning of the band happened?
I was playing in The Blood and then The Angelic Upstarts and I got the idea to merge punk rock with heavy metal but in an original format and like nobody had ever done it before so that it was so loud and cacaphonous it went over the threshold of pain. The early days I was really living it what you hear on record was all for real and total anarchy
– In 1984 you released both an EP as your first full-length, entitled «Pure Filth», and then in 1985 «Metal Anarchy» came out. How was all this time and this period? What are your memories from it?
Pure Filth was the debut album and it was a full album and not an EP. I have fond memories of the early days one of the high-lights was working with Lemmy when he produced the second album Metal Anarchy. Although everything was intentional it is now a blur from the many years of severe alcohol.
– Back in 1985 you managed to open for METALLICA at Hammersmith. It was told you were upset due to the expenses or something like that, and you threw the mic stand. Is there anything true about this?
Yes it is all true, cars smashed to pieces, bouncers smashed in the face, police called it was fuckin glorious, unbelievable and a perfect day out for me.
– With what bands did you get to coincide during the good era of British Metal? I always ask this to classic bands from the UK: How was the NWOBHM like? Did it help you? Was it relentless activity from bands or just a few ones could allow themselves to keep suich activity?
Back in the day living in London it was all happening, Wardour Street was awash with name faces the guys from Motorhead, Billy Idol, The Upstarts, Rose Tattoo we all hung out together. Warfare was slightly after the NWOBHM but I knew all the guys that played in those bands and yes it was a very exciting time for any musician who made it.
– From 1986 to 1988 you released two more albums. Those were the years when a lot of acts changed a little bit their style. Back then there was a lot of melody into the scene. Your two albums from these years still had a lot from your roots, but also a slightly experimental touch form my view. What is your opinion on this? And how did you experience these years and these albums?
I wanted to grow and not be stuck in the same mould to make it interesting for both myself and the fans although everything was played with the Marshalls on number 12 towards the end of the band I was creating quite a twist by adding alternative dark music into the metal riffs especially on a Conflict of Hatred, but at that point I was beginning to lose interest and I stumbled up on writers block but still wanted to create a final album which was Hammer Horror before I retired totally.
– There is also a video named «Concept of Hatred – Anthems of the Altar». How was the adventure of filming everything live was like? I keep watching it on YouTube nowadays and I still freak out.
The dvd was recorded in a real church we got the permission from the Bishop of Durham telling him that we were a folk band and then we had all the film crew down and almost blew the fuckin roof off the place, after that the residents went absolutely mad, it was on all the tv stations and all the magazines and newspapers saying that we were blasphemers, another perfect example of my intellectual insanity.
– Already in 1990 you released an album that went pretty unnoticed, and where you indeed changed your style. That album was «Hammer Horror», a conceptual opus dealing with monsters and which honestly I really liked. I still think it is powerful. How did you come up with doing such an opus? Did you get to play it live some time? ANd nowadays, what is your opinion on this release?
The release was my baby as I had always been an avid lover of Hammer Horror films and I wanted to do a concept album of the same. Ironically when I got the idea it was the 40th anniversary of Hammer Films and the actual film company signed me to do the album which took about six months in the studio to create an opus I am really proud of, that aside I still like the really noisey stuff as you can tell by listening to the brand new album as it is probably the heaviest release of 2017.
– Did you ever think that was going to be your final album? What did you do from the 90’s until your recent reunion? Have you been involved in any other projects or have other commitments?
I had many committments away from the music business this is the first album I have written and created in 25 years.
– A lot of years passed by. Metal dropped considerably, but then the Internet arrived and again a lot of bands from different periods and Metal styles resurrected, and access to music was way easier. Was this an incentive for you to come back? Did you notice a new legion of young fans, along with the old lifelong ones, were getting interested in you?
Because Warfare were the worlds very first punk metal band I suppose I influenced many many new bands, the internet had nothing to do with me coming back, the comeback was all down to my dream and/or nightmare, this inspired the re-creation of my very first love Warfare.
– On a view to the future, how do things look to get out an tour? Do you have something ready?
There are absolutely no plans whatsoever to play live and if I did it would have to be on a huge scale with a tremendous backing band, as the songs on the new album are so intricate to play, and I do not write as a musician, I write as a hell raiser in my own style.
– And about future releases, do you have a steady band for upcoming albums or are you just focused on the new album right now?
The new album is my main priority hopefully the only thing that the future holds if I am lucky, is life.
– Do you have any other musical project besides your band?
– So that has been everything from our side. Our best wishes and hope we could see you someday touring in Spain. If you want to add some final words, feel free to do it my friend. Thank you so much.
The new album Evo/Warfare is now out on both cd and vinyl www.hrrecords.de and is the heaviest most intense album to be created since Pure Filth and I hope it makes your ears bleed and burns your face off.