Damien Done – Interview Ieper Hardcore Fest 2018

Hello, welcome back to Ieperfest. You’ve played here with Culture before.

Today it’s with your solo project Damien Done and the first day of your first European tour, are you excited to perform here?

Very much, i’m excited. This whole thing is a very different experience from Culture. We don’t have a following. It’s not the kind of band where people will be rushing to the stage to sing along and pile up on each other. It’s interesting. Because i’ve never done like this before.

It’s a different sound compared to the ‘regular’ Ieperfest lineup.

It’s definitely a change for the festival, having something this mellow. Although live i think we are a

little heavier and louder than most people realise. The live version of Damien Done that is. It’s definitely a change for us. The shows we have played have not been with metal or hardcore bands.

Last week your latest album, Charm Offensive, received an European release on Hypertension Records. The album has been released in US since a few months. How has the response been to the album up untill now?

In the States it’s been pretty good and actually in Europe there has been some good reviews about, some good press around it. It’s hard to really know. These days when all your doing is digital and vinyl you don’t know how digital sales have been untill months and months down the road. And vinyl, the only people that will by them are vinyl collectors. You only press 300 or 500 of something sometimes and even if you sell them all it doesn’t tell you about how many people like your stuff. So who knows, the real test will be the shows. To see if any one comes out, if they do, if they know the music.

For the European version you’ve made a deluxe version of the vinyl. Screenprinted by l’7e Oeuil, what led you to pick L’7e Oeuil for this collaboration?

That was entirely Hypertension Records their ideas. They worked with him on some Amenra artwork. They proposed the idea and i looked at his stuff and thought it was a great fit. Didn’t give any direction, i wanted it to be whatever he wanted to.

There’s also a bonus track when you buy the special vinyl edition. A cover of Killing Joke’s Primitive, why that particular song?

Before the LP came out in the States we did a 7” with Curious Thing, which was one of the singles of the album. The B-side was this cover song, i love Killing Joke. And i really like that song. I’ve already did some demo versions on my own and i thought it had some potential. Re-recorded it, put it on the B-side and then Hypertension wanted to have something else to offer for the digital. It was supposes to be exclusive for the Mind Over Matter 7” in the States. But Austin that runs the label is a really cool guy and he appreciated what Hypertension wanted to do.

In previous projects you’ve always performed vocal duties, but with Damien Done you’ve done it all DIY style. From writing the lyrics to performing all instruments on the album. And now for the live performances you’ve assembled a full band of friends to accompany you. How different is it to play your songs with other band members?

It’s a relief. The alternative is playing by myself to backing tracks. Me and laptop on a stage. You know, that might happen from time to time. But for the most part this band is the line-up. It feels good, we have some good chemistry. They’ve really been awesome about helping out and being down for anything at anytime. This is the band, this is the ideal situation. On the recording i didn’t record everything but i did write everything. Programmed the drums, the piano. I did guitars and vocals. Programmed the bass lines but then the guy who produced it redid the bass lines and added extra guitars. It’s very different writing the music rather than just the lyrics and vocals. It became much more of a live band. The recording is either very minimal and stripped down in which case the live version much fuller and heavier. Or the recordings are like really full and glossy and slick. In which case we just make them loud, live rocksongs. It’s a good balance, it really works.

Charme Offensive features some amazing artwork, the guy with a balaclava riding on the public transport holding a bouquet of roses in his hands clearly has a message. What was the underlying thought to this?

A lot of the songs on the album have to do with secrecy. There are a lot of stories about people keeping sides from themselves hidden from the people that they love or work with. Sometimes they are up to no good, because they are just pieces of shit. Other times the are good people who find themselves in situations where they don’t know where to navigate. There’s a theme of elements of oneselves being hidden. The guy having the mask, even the other releases, the face is always obscure. I think that is just a common theme that sort of runs through the music. The songs are either about the sides of people we’re not seeing or the side of people we’re seeing they rather have us not seeing.

I’ve read that one of your earlier songs was even used in a Belgian porn movie. How did this come by?

A bunch of them. Most of the songs on the Stay Black record. Muriel is a friend of mine, she runs La Fille D’O. She was doing this kind of really interesting, i don’t know if she’d approve of the term, alt porn kind of thing. She wanted to use my music in it. It went surprisingly well, the whole soundtrack was really good. There were a lot of other artists too.

End of 2017 a video for the song New Cleavage appeared on Youtube, Edward from Goodlife was involved and Dwid Hellion of Integrity directed the video. Looked like a fun shoot in Kortrijk drinking Duvel while girls are dancing around?

Edward coördinated it, the record was originally supposed to be on Goodlife. Back in 2003 or whenever it was. He had me come over to do the video. Dwid had just moved to Ghent. It was a great day of shooting. Nothing to complain about. Everybody on the La Fille D’O team is incredible too.

You’ve released your previous albums, EP over the last years but most of these songs have been in the making since 2004 as you’ve shelved the record for a long time. What led to the prolonged release?

There were a few problems. When it was about to come out Edward decided he wanted it to be a full length. So he wanted me to add songs. But there was no recording budget to add songs. That kind of killed the enthouisasm. I started recording, that was good because it drove to start figuring out how to record at home. But that early stuff was not ready to be on the same record as the songs i had recorded in the studio. I couldn’t see them all on the same release. It kind of just killed moral. Then i would be ready, he wouldn’t be.When he was, then i wasn’t. Finally at a certaint point when we were both ready it didn’t make sense on Goodlife. The label had changed, it had been too long since my other bands had done things. So Demons Run Amok stepped in in 2016 and put out the Stay Black record and the 7” to go with it.

Next to your music career you also work as an industrial designer and you have your own t-shirt line named Wear Dinner, where you design humorous mock up shirts. Looks like you’re a very busy man, how do you combine all this?

Not very well sometimes. On top of that being a husband and a father. I’ve always needed a lot of projects. When i wasn’t in two or three bands, this is what happens when i’m not in two or three bands at the same time. I’m in one but i’m also going to do T-shirts and so on.

Any last words or thanks you want to share with our readers?

Really looking forward to today and looking forward to the next shows. We have no idea what to expect. It’s kind of exciting to be starting over as like a small band. I’m really happy that some people have been supportive already. Buying the record, amazing we even sold some T-shirts today. We never took it for granted with the other bands. We always appreciated people being fans but we knew they were fans. We knew what we were going into. This is just an adventure.

Relative Ways – This World

Aussie indie-grunge band Relative Ways released their debut album Alaska on August 10th of this year. The first single from the album, “This World”, is a slow song with amazing production and a solid, full but roomy sound. If you’re into bands like Violent Soho or others reviving grunge in the land down under, you’ll like Relative Ways. Listen to “This World” below and check out Alaska on Spotify.

Crowsview – Interview Ieper Hardcore Fest 2018

Crowsview are a five piece metal/hardcore inspired band from Roeselare, deep in the Belgian H8000 territory. They have been crushing stages for a couple of years with their brutal sound inspired by H8000 bands, Kickback and Arkangel to name a few. Ieper Hardcore Fest also must have noticed the hard working ethos and talent of Crowsview. They were invited to open the Main Stage on Friday. RMP Magazine caught up with guitar player Bart to discuss their upcoming release of their abum Lost Resistance and more.

On September 8th you’re releasing your new album, Lost Resistance. Congratuations. Featuring 8 songs and a release show in De Verlichte Geest, Roeselare. Tell us why everyone should be present?

The choice for De Verlichte Geest was obvious. Most of our band hails from Roeselare and have been going over there and seeing shows for years. We’ve worked really hard to get our album ready in time and so we hope to make it a great party. We’ve chosen for a diverse line up and after the show me and Dieter intend to deejay some records to keep the party going.

Lost Resistance is self released?

There have been some vague talks with a few labels but in the end we decided to release it ourselves. This way we could keep better control of everything and it enabled us to release the album a lot faster. It’s quite a complicated process, as we’ve experienced, to get all the paperwork done but we’ve learned a lot along the way.

The artwork for Lost Resistance is pretty dark in a way, it features a winged Madonna bleeding from the eyes, holding a goatheaded child amidst bones below. Not an everyday image, what motivated this artwork?

Jeroen was knew of the work of CLLK artwork. Pretty quickly we agreed to let him design something for us. We all agreed that it needed to be quite dark. We are really pleased of his work. Totally our style.

On Lost Resistance you’ve worked with two guest vocalists. Namely Ché Snelting (Herder) and Ross Demon (Length Of Time). How was the collaboration?

It went great. We’ve known Ché and Ross for quite a while and next to being talented vocalists each of them are also awesome guys. We’ve contacted them and they were in it for it immediatly.

They came down together to the Hearse studio and everything was recorded pretty fast. Afterwards we’ve went to go eat some fries and had an amazing night witht them. Ché also was really hungry that night.

Things are going fast for Crowsview, you’ve recently played a show opening for Agnostic Front and Merauder, what’s next?

It was quite an honour for us. They’re not the leastest of bands to play with. When i’ve learned about Agnostic Front in my younger years i never could have imagined that one day i’d be playing with them on the same line up and definitely not in Roeselare. It was an amazing night. Really nice people too.

Crowsview hails from Roeselare, H8000 area. How big of an influence was the H8000 scene to Crowsview?

For most of us it all started with the H8000 bands from when we were younger. Bands like Congress, Liar, Sektor, Spirit Of Youth, Deformity and many others have certainly inspired us musically. But those aren’t the only bands that have inspired us,

You’ve all played in different bands before and earned your stripes, Core Of Anger, Victim Eyes,… But what was the motivation for the formation of Crowsview?

I missed performing and creating music, so i persuaded Pieter to have a jam session. The song The Proposal pretty quickly came out of it. After a few rehearsals Jeroen and Dieter joined and we started writing songs. After a difficult search for a fitting vocalist we’ve found Kevin.

If you had to set a goal for Crowsview, where would you want to see the band go in the future?

We just want to play a lot of great line ups on shows and festivals to amuse ourselves. Just playing with awesome bands and playing fun locations.

Any other local bands we need to check out?

The Curse Of Millhaven, Senter, Lost Baron.

Last words or thanks you’d like to share?

Big thanks to everyone that collaborated on our album. The people setting up all the shows and last but not least all the people coming down to our shows.


HAVVK – Glass

HAVVK are an amazing alternative band from London and are sharing with us again! We’re in for a treat because here is their new single called “Glass”! What I personally love most about the band is the uniqueness and the beautiful vocals.

ROA – Ushism

ROA are a shamisen punk rock band from Japan! Check out their latest song “Ushism”, the song is really unlike anything I’ve heard before and I really enjoy the blend of the melodies! Enjoy!

Crowsview – Lost Resistance

If you are into heavy metalcore then Crowsview is what you’ve been waiting for. Hailing from the H8000 area, this five piece delivers a hammering sound inspired by 90’s hardcore and metal that will leave you jaws wide open. They have been destroying stages since 2015 and Lost Resistance is their newest album that will be celebrated at their September 8th release show at De Verlichte Geest in their hometown of Roeselare. Lost Resistance holds 8 tracks that resemble the style and sound of Arkangel, Kickback, Power Trip,… and even has two tracks featuring guest vocalists. On the song Of Skin And Nails vocal duties are shared with the mad bark of Ché Snelting of Herder. The second guest part is by Length Of Time’s Ross Demon who lifts Burn It Down to a different level with his screaming nightmares. Crowsview has been playing all over Belgium the last year with a stop at Ieperfest just recently. With their new self released album to be celebrated it seems 2018 has been succesfull for Crowsview. 

Crossface – Interview Ieper Hardcore Fest 2018

Today you’ve played the Trench stage at Ieperfest. How was it?

Very good, We thought that we would play for some friends, maybe some people would be interested but when we started it was quite full actually.

Crossface has been a band since a few years, you’ve started for the love of it and playing Ieperfest was one of the main goals you wanted to achieve. Today you’ve succeeded. What’s next?

We’re playing Sunday 26th of August in Kavka, Antwerp with Merauder and Harm’s Way. That’s something that came up. Playing the mainstage at Ieperfest someday would be nice too.

Last year Stijn joined the band on guitar duties. A breath of fresh air into the band?

Some people gave us advice for a second guitar player. We’ve had like two or three people asking to play or try out but we were always like no. We’re like a bunch of friends playing, we want to improve ourselves but it has to be fun. I knew Stijn from the scene. He asked, he’s a really dedicated hardcore kid, to put it like that. He can try out for me, no problem. The rest shared the same idea, so one year later was playing with us. He added some little things to the sound of Chedli’s and actually it’s yet another great friend who joined the band. So it’s still a lots of fun and that’s really necessary for us.

You released an album last year, Kayfabe Is Not Dead on Dust & Bones Records. In the meantime you’ve played all over Belgium. How was the album perceived by the crowd?

We printed 300 copies and split it with Freddy (Dust & Bones Records), each 150 copies. A year later we’ve got 8 CD’s left and he’s got about 50 or something, i’m not sure. But he’s quite happy with the sales. We never thought of it, 300 was like the minimum, so let’s just go for it. And now it’s almost sold out. Like i said, we amaze ourselves every time that it’s all going so well. A lot of people here today on Ieperfest come up to us and say that was a really great show.

The album title Kayfabe Is Not Dead refers to one of your passions, wrestling which seems to flow throughout the artwork. The word Kayfabe comes from wrestling, could you let us in on what it means?

Wrestling is my passion from like ten years old. We were looking for a name, i’ve put Crossface out there. It kind of stood on itself. The cover of the album is a wrestling picture, that was not my idea. But it worked out great. Kayfabe really stands for as a wrestling term that means pretend. Most people will know that pro wrestling is staged. A Kayfabe is like when two wrestlers are having a feud with each other. Battling each other but actually they are friends or colleagues. That’s the term Kayfabe, it’s not real. That’s why Kayfabe Is Not Dead is the album title, not being real is not dead.

With Crossface you’ve choosen for old school hardcore. 90’s H8000 bands seem to be a big influence, what other influences makes Crossface into it’s own?

I think it’s all old school, like Merauder is an influence, Slayer of course. But mainly early Hatebreed, for the vocals and lyrics. Mainly it’s H8000 influenced. We really love Congress, Vitality and Regression and so on. That’s really the main influence.

As you just mentioned Vitality, you’ve worked with AK (Vitality) from the Off The Moon studio to mix and master the album, a well known name in H8000. Why this choice?

He’s a friend, a friend of mine and Chedli’s. We often go there, twice a year, when he’s at home. Because he works for Slayer and Carcass as well. He’s not at home that much, but if he’s at home we like to go there for stories. We’re not only wrestling nerds but we’re also music nerds. We like to know what’s going on with this and that band. So we’re friends and he told us if we needed his help we should come over. We are very lucky to work with him. He helps us out a lot. He even came over to our rehearsal to tune the guitars. He helped us with mixing and mastering. He told us where to go to record. You just need to ask and he knows that we’re not taking advantage of him. It’s really another hardcore friendship experience.

On live shows you often play a cover by Vitality, namely Slaughterchambers, a song against vivisection and animal abuse. Any particular reason this song was chosen?

The lyrics does not pose a problem because i’m a vegetarian. We are with three vegetarians in the band. I always think that when you have straight edge / vegetarian lyrics, the one that sings them has to be like be it. Otherwise it’s like not real. Apart from that, Chedli and i were very ODK crew, Vitality minded. Chedli has that sound, if he plays the guitar he just has that sound. It was like a natural thing, when we started playing we didn’t have enough songs so we were looking around. Congress, Liar, it’s also difficult but it’s well known to say so. Why not play a Vitality song, because AK helps us out a lot, the rest of the Vitality guys know we play it as well, they love it when we do. Why don’t we play that and it also fits with our sound. There have been talks about not playing it anymore because we have enough songs now but we love that song so much it stays in there.

To quote one of your song titles, Anger As Fuel. Is this one of the main drives for your music?

It’s a part of the message. There’s a lot of stuff going on in hardcore and the world that dislikes us.

You have to use that anger as fuel to keep pushing forward. It’s like a positive message. You can look at it as violent but we are not about that.

Another track where the title sort of speaks for itself is Nature’s last laugh. What’s your vision on the current state of nature?

It’s about that subject, i love to read about it a lot. That’s also why i’m also a vegetarian, not only for the animals but also for the environment. What can we say about it, it speaks for itself. It’s sad and it’s true. What i wrote is about my personal view of things, i’m not really relaxed about it. When everyone tries their best, at least i do or we do that’s what the song is about.

Any last words or even some fresh bands we need to check?

We really have to thank a lot of people, Laurent helps us out with the pictures. Freddy who believed in us since day one. All the friends that come out to shows and some of them became friend through that. Steele Justice, Five Across, Sore, Today’s Illusion, Farsight, Makasrr, Minded Fury are some of the bands that we like to play with…But really: a big thank you to the people who support the underground scene in any way, let’s keep it alive.



Living With Lions – Second Narrows

From just north of the border in Vancouver, Canada, Living With Lions have released “Second Narrows”. The song named after a bridge in their hometown is the first single off of their upcoming fifth album, Island, which is due out on September 14th!

Foxbat – White T(h)rash

Not many bands have gotten me to say, “holy shit, I want to post this!” Foxbat is one of the bands that has. They’re the reason RMP is on SubmitHub – to find amazing new talent.

All too many submissions from SubmitHub are mediocre either in mix quality or writing, and even if one or the other is good it’s rare to find a solid combination of the two. Again, Foxbat pulled this off. Perfectly. 

It’s safe to say I love the sound of this band. Their album Rotgut dropped on August third, and you can listen to their single White T(h)rash below and pick up the album on Bandcamp!

Everyone Loves a Villain

From the Pacific Northwest, Everyone Loves a Villain delivers a whopping punch of modern metal. They may be from a small city in the middle of nowhere, but the sound is big enough to fill an arena. They’ve submitted not one, but two killer tracks that draw influence from BMTH, Breaking Benjamin, and more. Take a listen and find more on Spotify!