Sunday, March 13, 2016

An Interview with Creeping

Creeping may be new to many (outside their New Zealand home, at least) but the band has been in existence for over a decade, playing an unsettling style of slow atmospheric metal that forces death, black and doom to co-exist in a way I can only describe as "R'leyehan." Their most recent album Revenant, recorded by Jamie St Merat of Ulcerate, was one of my Bandcamp Picks a few months back and a damn fine listen to boot. Needing to know more, I reached out to the band for an interview, and bassist/vocalist Marko Pavlovic cut right to the chase with his answers.
photo taken from Encyclopedia Metallum

Dreams of Consciousness: Please introduce Creeping - who are you, where are you from, and what kind of music do you play? 

We’re from Auckland New Zealand. Creeping is S. Blomfield – Guitar, J. Wallace – Drums, and me, M. Pavlovic – Bass / Vox. I’ve heard us described a number of ways, most recently as a doom and death metal band, but black metal has always been at the core of our direction and intent.

DoC: For anyone not familiar with you, please give a brief history of your band - when did you form? What were your goals at the time, and how have they changed?

Creeping started in 2004. I wouldn’t call it a ‘goal’ as such, but we always viewed ourselves as relative stylistic outliers, and liked that position, which I think has always been integral in the bands development. I can’t actually remember what the ‘goals’ might have been ten years ago, but I know that nowadays we aim to make the gloomiest music possible.

DoC: I really enjoyed your most recent album Revenant. How long had you been working on it before you released it? How would you describe the difference between your new material and your early albums like Funeral Crawl and Order of Snakes?

Glad to hear you liked it. We started working on it in 2011, immediately after Order of Snakes was released. We spent a lot of time organising and arranging Revenant compared to the other two albums. At its musical core, Revenant is Blomfield and Wallace, with a handful of riffs, overlays, and some arrangement from me - a different compositional equation to the others – but the essence of the sound and the atmosphere we’ve always tried to convey is even more potent than ever.

DoC: Speaking of your earlier albums, what are the chances of getting them released through Bandcamp?

Minimal for now.

DoC: Ulcerate's Jamie Saint Merat worked on both Revenant and your split with Glorior Belli. What was recording with him like, and what did he bring to your sound?

In just about everything each of us have ever done musically, Jamie has been involved in one form or another; be it recording/mixing/mastering, designing artwork, or playing. It’s always a pleasure to work with him. It goes without saying what a talent he is. What he contributes most to our sound is an understanding of exactly what we’re after. He’s an old friend, so it’s a legacy understanding.

DoC: Revenant is released by both Iron Bonehead Productions (on LP/digital) and Daemon Worship (on CD). How did these two labels get in touch with you?

I reached out to both of them to check their thoughts, and they were both interested. I can’t speak highly enough of PK (IBP) and Viktor (DW); both absolute gentlemen with impeccable taste in their own rights, running highly reputable labels with awesome output.

DoC: Speaking as someone from another overlooked scene (South East Asia), it can be frustrating to be a metal fan in an out of the way place - few tours come through, and the bands in the region are mostly ignored by the larger metal world. What would you say is the most frustrating part of being a band from New Zealand? Would you consider moving abroad, as a few NZ bands have done?

I do understand what you’re saying. New Zealand’s proximity is definitely a hurdle for active bands who want to tour globally. However, I feel a point came a few years ago when a number of our bands stopped giving a fuck, stopped playing live so often, and focused our output in better ways. Creeping isn’t really a touring act, so I’ve never really found too much about being from New Zealand particularly frustrating, outside of the many idiots involved with metal.

DoC:  I've heard that the bass tone is particularly important for NZ death/black metal bands. How would you describe your bass tone? What is it about the bass that characterizes NZ bands?

Haha, you’re definitely right, for our bands anyway. The goal has always been to create a truly horrific bass tone, without losing the actual bass component from it. There are a number of us who have always had a massive focus on this --- VK from Vassafor, L. Muir from Diocletian and H. Mortlock from Skuldom were some of the original proponents of this filthy tonal ideaology. Our bass tones all differ, but they’re definitely all aligned to the same end goal: apocalypse.

DoC: How often do you get to tour outside NZ? And how do you feel about a SE Asia tour?


DoC: What's next for you guys?

We’re currently working on a split with another viciously unholy band from the bottom of the world.

Creeping on Facebook

Creeping on Bandcamp

Revenant LP available through Iron Bonehead Productions HERE

Revenant CD and digital download available through Daemon Worship HERE