– First of all, thank you so much for answering to our interview. And tell us, how is the band currently doing?
Really good. We’ve being busy playing shows in support of Havoc ,throughout the Uk and the continent with many more on the horizon, and are also looking towards new material. We’ve got plenty of ideas flowing for an ep or 7-inch. So it would be great to get back in the studio soon
-Last year you released your debut album, «Havoc at the Midnight Hour». What are your feelings on the final outcome now that it’s been unleashed upon the world for a while?
I’m pretty pleased with it, we put a lot of hard work, and i think it sounds great. I’m happy it’s been well received
-You mix the raw energy of Punk with all the Heavy Metal imagery. How was AGGRESSIVE PERFECTOR born? What was the purpose?
Aggressive Perfector was born out of my real burning desire to form a heavy metal band but with a real raw edge to it, and also a frustration at the time of my other bands I was playing in becoming stagnant and not doing much
-Now that I mention this blend, what elements or trademarks do you take from different styles (from Thrash to Punk or Heavy Metal) to create your own sound?
From these genres I’d say there’s an energy, an aggression, an attitude and an aesthetic that we have always been drawn too. We just write what we like and think is good. Vengeful One is the most punk song I’d say on the album, there’s a huge crossover vibe to that one.
-You’re named after a SLAYER song. What significance does this hold?
Well we just needed a name for our first gig, and couldn’t decide, so went with that. We love Slayer, Show No Mercy especially is a massive influence, but there’s more to our sound I believe than the name suggests
-I read you recorded «Havoc at the Midnight Hour» once but then scrapped it and did again. Why? Are you perfectionists?
We didn’t like the outcome the first time around, the overall sound, the assault on the songs, it didn’t have the power, some songs were a little too slow, and in truth it sounded more like a demo more than an album. Which meant the second time around we knew exactly what we were doing and what we wanted. We are not really perfectionist, just tough, critical songwriters, who want to get it right. There’s plenty of imperfections on the album, and I like that, I don’t like the the idea of Aggressive Perfector being polished and pristine.
-And how was the final recording? Was everything planned or did you leave some room for some improvisation and experimentation?
Well prior to the recording everything sounded pretty tight and I was satisfied with most of the lyrics written. But we always leave space for experimentation in the studio, with leads, vocals and keyboard parts, its good to have unpredictability and spontaneity I think that’s what makes a recording fun and an album great.
-Synths and keys play an important role throughout the whole album. What effect and what purpose do you think they fill on this record?
Well being a massive horror/trash cinema fan, and lover of the soundtrack I wanted to use keyboards and synths to create a horror/sci-fi vibe throughout , on the opener ‘Onwards to the Cemetery’ the keyboards are pretty spooky and almost hammer horror esque. On ‘Into the Nightmare’ the are more futuristic sounding. They create a real dystopian apocalyptic feel to that song. Also I think keyboards in metal music sound great too when done right. Seventh Son of a Seventh Son by Iron Maiden is a good example
-Everything on the album reeks of 60’s, 70’s and 80’s horror movies. What are some of your favourite movies, directors…?
Off the top of my head, The Exorcist, The Thing, American Werewolf in London, Phantasm and The Beyond. As for directors, John Carpenter, Dario Argento, Ruggero Deodato, Lucio Fulci. I could go on forever with this though.
-And besides horror movies, what else does inspire you?
Well of course the music, the whole aesthetic around heavy metal for sure. Once we’ve written the music to a song, and we’ve got a feel for it. That will often shape the lyrical theme. I take a lot from reading too. H. P. Lovecraft is a big influence. I would say the society around me and the daily grind and grime of Manchester plays on my mind and fuels creativity.
-There’s also some sci-fi, as s example on «Chains of Black Wrath», with that post-apocalyptic biker vibe (of course mixed with horror). It paints a very clear picture. Is there somewhere you want to take your listener to, not just with your lyrics, but with the landscapes you create and the scenarios you manage to build?
Yea absolutely, I want to tell a story throughout the songs and take the listener on a journey. ‘Chains of Black Wrath’ it’s set in a city that’s crumbling, who’s civilization is in total dismay and chaos, having to deal with a bunch of post-apocalyptic renegade lawless mercenaries
-You also focus a lot on evil. Not just evil as an unknown entity from Beyond, but also as an earthy kind of evil. A real one. The kind of evil living among us, as we can hear on «Vengeful One». Is real life more inspiring than horror fiction?
It can be for sure, and I think like a lot horror fiction writers, we draw a lot from the dark side of the human psyche, we explore the evils and cataclysms of this unforgiving world. The song ‘Vengeful One’ though is more about a down and out loser that’s looked upon as the underclass, getting one back on a society thats rejected and taken the piss out of them. It’s goes bit over the top, and it’s cloaked in 70s horror/slasher nostalgia , but thats the idea.
-In fact this song depicts and paints urban scapes. What does the city have that inspire you? Is it its decadence?
For Manchester it’s the setting, its a post-industrial city. With the urban decay and dark satanic mills there’s a grittiness about the place, its often raining and grey here too, so it can feel a bit miserable. But Its a city that is changing, and at a rapid rate, it’s become more yuppified, with some truly horrible sterile apartment blocks popping up everywhere, built to make a quick buck, to cater for a new affluent clientele. There is a decadence in the city, you walk around on a Saturday night, people are coked and pissed out of their minds, and it can be a hostile environment at times . I certainly feel a sense of alienation and it does reflect in the music and lyrics.
-Your lyrics are approached in a very traditional way (when it comes to Metal) but they’re not just a random collection of cliches, they have a deeper, not that obvious inspiration but you think sticking to certain stereotypes. Is it almost necessary to convey this kind of 80’s aesthetic and to provide something entertaining?
I guess its the genre we are a part of, its a homage to the old school, i love the music, image and lyrics of that era, the 80s, i think we are just putting our own mark on it
– In fact you stick in any possible way, from the cover artwork to the sound and themes to a very 80’s style. What’s to you the most important thing in an album of the genre? The overall feeling and attitude? The sound? The speed?
All these things, but not necessarily the speed. We love Doom Metal, and bands like Candlemass and Celtic Frost are huge influences, its pure heavy hell, at times it doesn’t need to be fast to be powerful
-I think we all already know Metal tends to be a quite nostalgic «community». When Simon Reynolds researched on the cult of retro on «Retromania: Pop Culture’s Addiction to Its Own Past» he wondered if: “Is nostalgia stopping our culture’s ability to surge forward, or are we nostalgic precisely because our culture has stopped moving forward and so we inevitably look back to more momentous and dynamic times?”. Applied to the Metal world, what’s your opinion? Do we use to look back because we feel there’s something missing on most of today’s music?
There is a desire to explore the magical glory days of metal for a lot of newcomers, for the old school folks its never left them, metal is in the blood forever. Currently though i think there are some great bands coming out and a killer scene, like ourselves they are influenced by the past masters, but they are doing there own thing with it. Perhaps its a rejection of current art and culture, as some of it is garbage. For me, i grew up on vinyl, listening to Sepultura, Slayer and Iron Maiden obsessively, or a mix tape someone had done for me, and there is a magic to that, that metal fans understand
-All this about «Havoc at the Midnight Hour» beind said; how could you describe it in just 3 words?
Horror Metal Hell!
-And before we wrap this interview up, what are now your near-future plans?
All 3 of us play in another band called Wode, its more on the Black/Death metal side and we are about to record our 3rd album in April this year, think we will be touring for that as well. And with Aggressive hopefully a new ep along with some touring, it should be a busy year, providing the Coronavirus doesn’t wipe half the population out.
-That’s all from our side, thank you once more for answering our interview. If you’d like to add some final words; feel free to do it.
Thank you Tania for the interview and killer questions.