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12/05/2008 – Interview with EMINENCE

Earlier this year the Brazilian Extreme Thrashers EMINENCE (official website) (also catalogued under Metalcore) released its newest album upon the masses, under the title "The God Of All Mistakes", of which the review can be found at this location. The brutality and clearness of the music suprised me and I couldn't stop listening to the album for quite some time, at least to my present standards.

To know a bit more about this new release and the band, the collaboration with Tue Madsen and a couple of other things, I sent a list of questions to vocalist Wallace Parreiras. You can read his replies below. If you haven't done so, check out EMINENCE and their latest release, because they're actually quite good, although there's still room for improvement on certain levels.

Emninence logo

Your new album has been out since a few weeks. How does it feel? Are you releaved that it's done and out or when looking back, are there things you wanted to have done differently?

We are really happy with the final result. We worked so hard to accomplish this album, I think it's the best album of EMINENCE. :-)

I noticed that in many songs it's the drums that stand out, that are the most diverse instrument. Is there a specific reason for that, linked to perhaps the lyrics? Or did you give Andre all the freedom to do what he thought felt right?

No specific reason. Andre has all the freedom to compose the drum lines, he is a sick drummer.

The title is "The God Of All Mistakes". What inspired you for the lyrics and this title? And in your opinion, what went wrong?

"TGOAM" is just the stupid human being that judges himself like god. Everyone is seduced to some kind of power and it doesn't matter how much it costs. Our inspiration to write the lyrics are social problems, mental disturbance, selfishness, greed. We can not change the world, but we can change ourselves.

The God Of All Mistakes coverHow does the cover art link with the songs? I do see some sort of Jesus-like collage or is it supposed to be an angel?

Not really Jesus. The idea is one man like Jesus paying for his future greed. The war is a demonstration of ignorance, and we chose this theme to show and symbolize the album. I think our music can be represented by the artwork.

For this album you signed with Locomotive Records, for Europe and the USA . Is it easier to use the same company? Plus, what made them the best choice?

We split with Timeless Productions in 2006 and we were still looking for a new record deal to the band. Locomotive gave us good support. Yes, is easy to work with the same company for the US and Europe.

How important is it, in your opinion, to be signed with a label? I mean, these companies get a lot of criticism for charging too much for the CD, for not supporting/promoting some bands enough, for getting all the money, ... But the way I see it: many bands wouldn't survive or become bigger without labels, since they have the contacts for distribution and promotion, not to mention the budgets.

The music business is changing, the labels donīt have as much money as 15 years ago. The bands need promotion and labels have the contacts. In the near future that will be different, but for now the bands definitely need the record company.

The album was produced by Tue Madsen. Was this a personal choice or did Locomotive suggest him? Plus, what was it like working with him?

We have chosen Tue before our deal with Locomotive Records, It was a good experience for us, He is very good producer, the experience with him was great. Tue will surely work on our next recordings.

Was everything done before you entered the studio or did you still make some significant changes?

We did some changes, in the vocal lines and guitar parts and Tue did a guitar solo in the track "Injected Lies". He is a killer guitar player. :-)

In the press text it said you got ranked by MTV, Warner Music and the press... Here in the Benelux MTV and similar is all about mainstream music, or at least the mainstream/contemporary Rock/Metal bands. What's the situation like in Brazil ? Does the media like Metal more than elsewhere?

We played in 1996 on one festival called Skol Rock and MTV and Warner music were the sponsors. At that time MTV Brazil was so cool with some Metal and Rock Videos. Now to be honest with you, it really sucks. No videos anymore, only freak shows for teenagers.

The Brazilian scene has many interesting bands: Angra, Sepultura, Chaosfear, Krisiun, Shaman, Stormental, ... How easy is it for you or a band like yours to gather a fanbase, to play gigs, to get your name out...?

We have good a fanbase here in Brazil, especially in our hometown Belo Horizonte. It's not easy to play in Brazil, especially when our country is so big and Metal music is not strong in Brazil.

Eminence band picture 2008"The God Of All Mistakes" is your third album and probably your first on the European market. Since you've been around since 1995, has there been a change in style or have you maintained this kind of Metal over the years?

I think we changed a little bit, I would like to say an evolution in our playing style.

You are coming over to Europe in September. Will this be a big tour or just a couple of gigs? And are you in talks with other bands to tour together?

We will be touring in Swiss, France, Austria, Czech Republic and Germany - in total 45 shows. Maybe we will be a support band for big acts, but nothing is confirmed so far.

Is EMINENCE your only band? I see that Andre also plays in OVERDOSE.

Yes, I only sing with EMINENCE and Andre our drummer is not a member of OVERDOSE. He did some shows with OVERDOSE just for fun.

Some time ago you shot a video for "Day 7". Did you have an influence on the what/when/where/how of the filming? And why specifically that song?

Alan, our guitar player, and Leandro, the owner of Toca movies, worked together, writing the script and location. I think "Day 7" is our single, Heavy and Melodic.

Skill-talk: are you all self-taught or did you take lessons to develop what you weren't capable of?

I've taken some singing/vocal lessons to improve my clean vocals to do the record, and I'm still doing it, I've a lot to learn.

In addition, how do you maintain your voice? How do you prevent from losing your voice for a few days or wrecking your vocal chords?

I just drink a lot of water and I do not drink alcohol (or at least try to not drink). I practise during 20 minutes before we start our show to keep the voice warm and do some singing lessons.

Metal is known for its loud volume levels. Fans can get their hearing damaged via the big speakers or the earplugs of their mp3 players. But artists also have to take care when they stand on stage. Do you keep this in mind? And have you noticed a change in your hearing?

We use protection in our ears during our shows, because we have to take care of our ears. Everybody in the band has the same thoughts regarding loud volume on stage, We keep this in our minds.

That's it for me. Many thanks for replying and giving more insight in certain aspects. All the best to you and I'll try to see if I can make it to one of the shows. ;-) Final words are yours...

Thank you very much for this interview and I would like to invite Metallers to check our myspace:

Stay Heavy!

Wallace and Eminence

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