BANISHER

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1.Banisher was formed in 2005. Unroll the parchment and tell us the stories of your quite brief livid existence.

 

The band was formed by me and Michał Such in July 2005 in Rzeszów. After half year of playing, we’ve recorded first demo “Sorrow of Death” and next year we’ve recorded EP “Human Sacrifice”. Since our beginnings we’ve played few shows in our neighbourhood and started to explore new territories. Till our first album “Slaughterhouse”, released at the end of 2010, we’ve played several gigs in Poland, two tours and several shows in Slovakia, Czech Republic, Ukraine and Hungary, and some pretty big festivals. After releasing our debut LP, most of the line up changed, but we still managed to maintain the band and continue playing, touring and recording. Our biggest breakthrough was “Scarcity”. After releasing our second album we’ve played 5 tours in Poland, two European tours, several huge festivals, including Inferno Festival in Norway and Metal Blast in Cairo, just to mention few, as well as big gigs as a support band. At the beginning of 2014 we’ve started to compose our 3rd album – “Oniric Delusions”, which has been released via Deformeathing Records on September 3rd 2016, and was a huge step for the band as it is now. Recently we’ve finished two Polish tours and one short European tour and now we’re preparing new stuff for the upcoming 4th album.

 

 

 

2. Even though you released a first demo „Sorrow of Death” in 2005, I didn’t read a lot about this recording in fanzines, and apparently it didn’t circulate much. Were you really happy with this demo, or kept it on a quite „private” level until you had better morbid juice? Is this demo still available and do you keep on playing some of these songs?

 

I think that back in the days we’ve had the attention thanks to “Sorrow of Death”. I’ve sent over 200 copies of that demo to ten’s of zines and labels, and the feedback was really good, especially the technical and composition level has been appreciated, considering our young age. You can find it on our youtube channel ( as well as the rest albums released before “Scarcity”), although we do not play the old stuff on gigs. But maybe someday, on our XX anniversary or something it might happen.

 

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3.What are the differences between the Banisher of the first and second record EP „Human Sacrifice” from 2007? What has improved, and are you currently closer to what you have in mind?

 

I think it was the continuation of our style, but even more improved. We were really crazy sick about technical playing, but we wanted to make our own thing, that stuff was really intense and modern guitarwise, but we kept the drumming more like oldschool bands, like Death, Pestilence, which made us different than all the other bands.

 

 

 

4. You play Technical/Experimental Death metal, this isn’t especially trendy right now, and quite a lot of « evil » board wankers would see that of a wrong eye. (Ouch… It’s neither new, nor original lol). Aren’t you afraid to be denied by the current full of honey metal scene? What are your motivations, and what does Death metal mean for you?

 

I think that we have our own thing, we do it no matter what and I am not afraid of any new trend music denial thing or whatever bullshit. We are doing our best to make best music that we can, and my motivation for that is my stubbornness, perseverance, patience and humility. Death metal is all I can do in my life so I want to do it the best way I can.

 

 

 

5. I notice you take your time to release a first album „Slaughterhouse” in 2010,after five years of existence. Right now it’s currently very trendy to directly release a first album, even before the release of several demos and before gaining some experience and enrich the setlist… It’s something I appreciate, because I fed up with the online musical fast-food! Fed up with the bands who already release their first album, but will fall into oblivion 6 months later because they do not have the strength or musical qualities to deal with all this intensive promotional/ relations/ packages bullshit… Give us a few details about „Slaughterhouse” recordings. How long was the process of putting the album together, as far as writing the music, the concept and arrangements is concerned?

 

“Slaughterhouse” was ready to record in 2006. I think I’ve finished it even before I finished high school (lol). We’ve had 3 attempts of recording it since 2006, but due to all-time issues, just to mention few – line-up changes, permanent lack of money, cheap production etc. we actually finished the album in July 2009. The album was supposed to be released at the beginning of 2010, but the record label which we’ve signed with was delaying the release for almost one year. They told me that they’ve sent me the cd’s, but the CD’s were stopped on some kind of border/customs office, and to get them back or forward to me the label has to pay some ridiculous amount of money. So they decided to release the album only as a digital version and sell it on their website or whatever. Obviously, I told them to fuck themselves, and obviously that was a deception, because the CD’s have never existed. We were insanely pissed off, and we’ve made a conclusion, that there is no point in seeking for another label and waste another year or so and we’ve released it for free in the internet at the end of December 2010. Later on Torn Flesh Record helped us with the distribution online. Man, I really hate that period when I remind myself of what we’ve came through to make that record happen.

 

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6.Your previous album „Scarcity” was a great success by critics and fans. Did this put some pressure on you when writing/recording for this new album?

 

I’ve had huge pressure and I was afraid, that I won’t make the new record as good as “Scarcity”. I really like that album and I am very satisfied with the feedback. Fortunately, I was able to take the band to the next level with the new record. I am developing my musicianship all the time, so it’s a natural thing for me that the new stuff is going to be better than the previous one. And I am looking forward to see what is going to happen after “Oniric Delusions” successor will be recorded. Which will happen pretty soon.

 

 

7.Musically, Banisher has always been the kind of band with a lot of diversity, with this new release being no exception. I like the balance that the band has between the intensity and the aggression but with an emphasis on technique and melody. How difficult is it to find that balance? Do you use a lot of time on trying to vary the music or is it something that just comes naturally?

 

 

The main concept of “Oniric Delusions” was to create highly intense, aggressive, technically advanced, brutal and extreme, yet groovy, catchy and recognizable songs. And perfectly suitable for live shows. Only killer shots, no prisoners to be taken with that stuff. This is very mature and conscious album. Everything is deliberate here. Through the years our musicianship has developed significantly and I guess that all in all the music on “Oniric Delusions” came naturally. I am absolutely 100% satisfied with everything on this album.

 

 

 

8.Is it always easy to build structures so that every riffs fit between each others? How long does a song generally need to be finished, or almost done… When a song is done, do you keep on improving some ideas from time to time, or does it remain untouched and frozen in ice once it’s recorded?

 

Writing “Oniric Delusions” took me half year. I was really creative and fast with that, because normally it always took me over 3 years to complete an album. I really can’t say how much time I need to write a song, because I am always waiting for the “green light” in my head, what can take even months. But when it comes, I usually finish a song within 2-3 days. Then I record a demo and send it to the rest of the guys. Afterwards minor improvements are being made and the song is ready to be recorded.

 

 

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9.Many bands play really fast today and that is sometimes illegible for uninitiated people. Do you feel that Banisher is a contrast to all those bands? There are lots of underlying melody and tons of groove in your music that is not always played at inhumanly fast tempos.

 

Yeah, I get your point. Well, through the years I’ve learned to create music. Music is not a competition. The great thing about music that I’ve discovered some time ago (comparing to sports for example) is that you don’t win if you’re faster or you collect more points. Racing in music is pointless. The most important thing is musicality. And to achieve that, you need lot more than speed and advanced technical skills. Advanced technique is only a tool that can be used to extract what’s in your head.

 

 

 

10.How do you see the evolution of your band’s style from your beginnings to your last album? What do you feel you can offer to the worldwide audience with „Oniric Delusions”?

 

Mature and conscious music. That’s what I’m really proud about “Oniric Delusions”. The band made a colossal improvement in literally every possible way since our beginnings. Musicianship, songwriting, musical awareness, hearing skills, studio experience, stage/tour experience, proper ways to rehearse, decent gear and instruments… I can make the list much longer, even such prosaic things as having a car or at least driving license. You know, I can even remember the times that we were getting on a gig by train or by city bus with all the gear, because none of us had a car (and most of us were too young) and we didn’t have the money to rent a bus, haha. Oh well, but what can you expect from a bunch of greenhorn 17/18 teenagers, hahah. Well, I guess that’s enough said.

 

 

 

11.Tell us a little about your new album „Oniric Delusions”. What is the idea behind it? In what way do you feel that you have improved since the last album? How would you describe the reactions your latest offering has been getting in the specialized press so far?

 

In my personal overall feeling I can sense that “Oniric Delusions” has rather aggressive feel than “Scarcity”, which was more extreme and insane. That’s mostly because of the vocals. Also I really like the sound of the album. And as it comes to the songs – even more mature and aware compositions and arrangements. We are having the best feedback and reviews that we’ve ever had. That’s very motivating and satisfying, because we’ve put tons of effort to create this album as it is, and we are convinced that “Oniric Delusions” is a great album and our best album so far, and it is great that the listeners think likewise.

 

 

 

12.Your new release „Oniric Delusions” comes to us by way of Deformeathing Production. You were previously under contract with the Unquiet Records label. Was there a specific reason why you decided to terminate the cooperation? Were you free of contractual obligations with Unquiet Records after the release of the blistering „Scarcity”?

 

Unquiet Records is a record label of our ex-vocalist Tytus. When he was in the band, we decided to release “Scarcity” via his label. We weren’t obligated to record any other record under Unquiet Records. We are still in good co-operation with Tytus, although we decided to release our next CD via Deformeathing Production.

 

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13. Deformeathing Production is still a very small label. How did the deal with Deformeathing Production came into play? Tell us in a few words about its profile and your co-operation with them at this point. Are you satisfied with the promotion/support of your label is able to offer this release?

 

Deformeathing Production as far as now is our highly engaged label and is doing great work for us. The label is growing up all the time and is releasing more and more polish metal bands. We are having good promotion, a great amount of reviews and interviews and the label owner is very supportive for Banisher.

 

 

 

14.What is the songwriting process for Banisher like? Is there a main man in the band – someone who writes the lyrics, comes up with the main concept, arrangements and directs the ongoing of things, or is it all teamwork?

 

 

Songwriting process in Banisher was always a one man thing – I was writing the music, and then I was recording a demo of the song and I’ve sent the demo to the rest of the band. Afterwards we were adjusting minor developments with the music. Then, me and the vocalist were creating the vocal lines and then the vocalist was writing the lyrics. I think that this style worked well, but now I am going to change that process more into teamwork. Still, I am writing all the riffs and most of structures/arrangements..

 

 

 

15.How long have you been preparing „Oniric Delusions” including the song-writing process? Is there a particular song that you prefer that you feel really stands out on the new album?

 

I wrote “Oniric Delusions” within 6 months, finished in June 2014. We’ve recorded all the instruments on two sessions – less than one week in November 2014 (guitars and bass) and 3 days in January 2015 (drums). Then we’ve had a 10 month break, because our vocalist left before the session and we’ve had to find a new man for the job. In October 2015 Szczepan joined the band. We’ve arranged the vocal lines and wrote the lyrics in 3 weeks and recorded them in I guess 4 days. We’ve spent the most time on mix and mastering – around two months. The album was ready in February 2016. I really love all the songs on this album, but if I’d had to pick the best ones, I’d go “The Fatal Parable of a Certain Mercenary” and “The Iconoclast”. We play all the album on gigs, so I guess that all of the songs are great live.

 

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16.Given that it had been three years since you had done your previous album, was there a sense that Banisher had to come back with a bang with this record, while you were writing and recording it?

 

We were very careful about this album. Everything had to be done perfect. And I am 100% satisfied with “Oniric Delusions” in every way. We’ve had lot of time during all those delays due to line-up changes and I wanted this album to be perfect. There was no rush, no deadlines or any kind of pressure and the only matter that was important for us was that it has to be a killer piece.

 

 

17.What’s your take on the album now that it is completed and released? Anything specific that you guys picked up in retrospect and are using to put together and improve upon with new material?

 

Absolutely nothing could’ve been better on this album. I wouldn’t change even a single note, because we were working on this album for so long and there is nothing to improve there. Even considering the fact, that we’ve finished it 2,5 years ago.

 

 

18.The band has had a lot of line-up changes, particularly on the guitars and bass. What is the reason for this, and do you find it hard to find the right person each time?

 

I really love the current line-up. And I really hate the line-up changes, but sometimes they just have to happen. People are quitting (or are being fired – that also happened) cause of multiple reasons. Fortunately, I am always enough lucky to find new members pretty fast. Lots of random musicians are often asking me for the vacancies in the band when we need them, but at first I am always looking among my musician friends, because after over 15 years of playing music I know that the best line ups are put together with the guys you know and you like. Nowdays almost everyone can play well their instruments, so this is obviously an important matter, but the most important thing for me is that I need to know that I’m in a band with a guy who can I trust, not with an antisocial moron or someone who’s pissing me off all the time and spoils the atmosphere in the band.

 

 

19.Few years ago, the polish Death metal scene was very active, many metallers even clearly identified a polish Death metal sound, and we used to see many albums released… But this phenomenon seems to have calmed down… There might be fewer bands… Am I right, or is it a false idea I might have because of Internet’s never-ending changes?

 

It is extremely tough to maintain a band. Especially when you have other duties, day job, family, kids. And unless you have money from the band it is always hard and makes many of bands to quit, because at some point they are just too tired and see no future with their band. And many of them also don’t see a point in playing in a band just as a hobby (although many people do), because if you’re serious about the band you have to put 100% of your dedication, time and money to let it roll properly. Nevertheless, I think we still have a very strong metal scene and it doesn’t matter if its death or black metal, we have this “thing” that makes polish band very distinguished among bands from other countries.

 

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20.What’s your view on the current state of death metal? How much do you identify with the rest of the underground scene? Is the Internet both a curse and a blessing to underground music?

 

I’ve noticed a tendency in death metal to get back to the more old school kind of playing, as well as blackened death metal. At the other hand, there are also lots of bands that what I call “modern new djent/technical death metal”, mostly young bands in the US. I was always a big fan of bands like Suffocation, Dying Fetus, Morbid Angel, Cannibal Corpse and all that happened in the 90’. Bands are still seeking for new sounds, styles and ideas, and Banisher is no exception, but we are definitely not in the league of technical/djent racing contest, you know, who has more strings and can play faster or more difficult. We’d rather make music from riffs, and if it happens to be technical – well, I don’t mind.

 

 

21.What is currently on your playlist? Which albums and demos kicked your ass recently, to the point you come back each time for more?

 

New Suffocation, Beheaded, Immolation, Hate Eternal, The Kill, waiting for new Dying Fetus and Origin. I also dig a lot new Danzig, Royal Republic, The Black Keys, Rival Sons, Eagles of Death Metal and can’t wait for the new Queens of the Stone Age album.

 

 

22.How do you think Banisher will sound in the future? Have you got particular goals and plans? Or will you keep on as long as the livid energy is there, devouring your flesh to escape the physical body? Tell us about your future projects, available merchandising, and feel free to conclude a morbid way or another…

 

Currently I am working on new riffs for the 4th album. This time I want to make more slow, crushing heavy riffing, more melodic, (kind like “The Fatal Parable of a Certain Mercenary”) and most of all more diverse album than “Oniric Delusions”. Of course there will be fast, extreme, aggressive and brutal stuff, but this time I want the album to be even more interesting and varied. I still do not know of any plans if it comes to gigs, because I am very busy with Decapitated till end of the year, but I hope that we will start to record this album at the end of 2017. At the meantime we are also planning to record a video to one of the songs from “Oniric”

 

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23.Thanks a lot for your time. I would like to extend my praise for a killer third album. Last words are up to you!

 

Thanks a lot for the opportunity to make this interview! Stay tuned for the new stuff, visit our website (www.banisher.pl ) and follow our social media for updates and see ya in the future on gigs!

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MORE INFO:

http://www.banisher.pl

https://banisher.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/banisherofficial

https://twitter.com/Banisherpl

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“Oniric Delusions” out via Deformeathing Production

https://deformeathing.com