Translation: Dope Fiend
Bronislav "Bruno" Kovarik - Bass, Vocals, Guitar
Petr "Pegas" Hlavac - Drums
Igor Hubík - Guitar
Vlastimil "Vlasa" Urbanec - Guitar
For the ones who follow the death metal scene, Hypnos would not be an unknown name, the band returned in 2010 with the founder Bruno Kovarik, also formerly in Krabathor. The release of "Heretic Commando - Rise Of The New Antikrist" gives us a chance to talk again with him.
Hi Bruno and welcome back on our website, how are you?
Bruno: I am doing really well. I was working on the garden a few hours today, then I had a good dinner and now I am doing this interview. Generally, I guess I am going thru one of the best periods of my life, I feel very relaxed and even-tempered and I am full of energy to kick Hypnos on higher levels.
We met when you decided to renew Hypnos, two years have passed since then, what are the main events happened during this time?
First main things were releasing of our mcd “Halfway To Hell” and comeback show on Brutal Assault Festival in 2010 year. Then we did two smaller tours with Napalm Death, some cool festivals and finally, this year we released our fourth full length album “Heretic Commando" via Einheit Produktionen. We had well-known Norwegian producer Børge Finstad behind the desk and we can honestly say, that this is the best album we have ever recorded and released.
"Heretic Commando" confirms that who can write good music will always put his personality in his sound. How were the composition and the recording processes of this album and how much did it get the influence of Igor Hubík (Root) in the songwriting?
Material for this album we were writing cca ten months during last year, we were recording home demos which we sent via e-mail each other but final look we did always during common rehearsal. I wrote most of the material but I have to say that Igorr wrote three great tracks with more black metal feel that definitely belongs to my favorite ones. He little bit destroyed my typical song writing style and made our today´s face more colored.
Watching the video of "Inverted/Chasing The Apostles", I felt a primordial ambience which reminded me of early Morbid Angel, and also did anyone tell you that your performance sometimes reminds to Peter of Vader?
Really? Cool, Peter is my great friend and very inspiring person, I admire him. Anyway, there is not any certain plan to copy him. Also first album of Morbid Angel was very long time my most favorite record so if you place our record on similar lever, it is really honor for us. But we would like to find our way with aspects that would be typical for our production, it is really hard to be original among so many bands but we definitely wanna try that. I mean that kind of mixing death and black metal, mixing of atmospheric stuff with intense aggression, could be the direction.
The line up in the video is made by four people with you at the bass and the vocals, who is the second guitarist? A session member or someone that may become part of the line up of Hypnos?
This is weird situation. Fourth guy is Vlasa who originally used to be our session live second guitarist but during the time we saw that he fits in the band pretty good and they we decided to feature him on our new album as well. He recorded three solos and I guess he fits in line up although he is not permanent band member, he has big interest to do his band for Hypnos and I appreciate that. He is becoming to be important part of us.
About the sound and the value of the songs, I already talked in the review, honestly I can't criticize anything since you are one of the few bands which is still coherent playing what they love: death metal. How much is it important to have a clear head and a real passion for the genre? I'm not saying that there aren't good bands today, but I see an increasing number of formally perfect releases that lack of feeling.
I have probably same feel sometimes. I can listen to many perfectly made records, with great sound, amazing musician skills, awesome artwork, musicians have the best and expansive gear but they sound all the same, as machine, cold, boring, I can hear no songs that repeats in your head but just the collections of riffs. I always repeat to my guys: “Remember, we must create songs and first! Songs with significant structure and chorus, songs with heart and message. I wanna have the songs in my head after listening the CD. I wanna have our songs to be helpful to our listeners when they feel happy or sad, I wanna make them remember our music even after decade maybe". This is the attitude I always had, my model that we will keep on in the future as well.
I read many times the booklet, it's really great telling the birth, the evolution and the realization of your ideas. You mentioned Rober Green Ingersoll, "The Great Agnostic", who talked about religions saying that they are "the opium of the people" and the lyrics say again that the divine plans doesn't really work with the human life. In the last period I'm continuously repeating to some people that death metal is not made just of clichés and that they should read the lyrics; in your opinion, did the fact that in extreme metal the lyrics are sometimes stupid talking about porn or something like that influence people, making them avoid to put their ideas in music?
Depends. It differs from band to band or better to say, from lyrics writer to lyrics writer. I am a bit disappointed that not many people is interested in reading lyrics (thanks that you do!) but on the other hand, it never makes me to do it different way. Even there is the only person that reads them, this effort will always make a sense for me. Writing of lyrics is a hard work for me, real childbirth and I always spend a lot of time on that, sometimes I hate that when you hold the pen for hours and nothing is coming. But I always have a theme first, the idea what I wanna say and message I wanna give to our listeners. I realize that I have the power to influence the people thru our music and this is big responsibility that must be taken seriously. Concerning Robert Ingersol, I admire how brave and pragmatic he was, he spoke the pure and easy truth, understandable to everyone, without bullshit you hear every day all around. If he would be living these days somewhere near to me, I am pretty sure we would be great friends.
In 2006 your last live show has been the one at Brutal Assault, six years later you put in cd 2 of "Heretic Commando" the one of two years before in that festival, do you have a link with this event? It's one of the most important in your country, am I right?
This is wrong information, our last live show in 2006 year was in Giessen, Germany, during January´s Eurotour with Centinex and Purgatory. First time we played Brutal Assault festival in 2010 as our comeback show and this event was really awesome. We got terrific response of thirteen thousand fans, this show takes also a part of our bonus DVD released with "Heretic Commando", it is named "Back In Death"... kind of AC/DC parody, same like "Halfway To Hell" title. I like to play with words.
Italy is too much influenced from the decision which Vatican made in the past (we hope not in the future too), also in the politic field; and meanwhile, scandals are still coming out in the ecclesiastic world, the world is full of religious and fanatic wars, how can we fight the religious plague? Is there a chance that mankind will notice that this is just eyewash?
I remember, I became a fighter against religions since I was at elementary school, when I was a child. When I started to play in the band, I was spreading my standpoints thru our music. I agree with you that believing in something supernatural makes no sense, it is fooling the people, machinery bringing power and money. People are just the fools many times, especially when they are in masses. It is easier to follow the other ones, to be a part of herd, they feel more safe and not lonely, but of course, this is the fiction. Unfortunately I do not think that people will leave religions one day but I will do my best to influence the people in order to start using of own brains. They do not have to agree with me, but I wanna make them think of that.
Since some weeks the polemic about "Pay To Play" blew up again, this phenomenon of bands which pay much money to have a good place in a festival or in an important tour, did anyone make you a proposal like this? Did anyone ask you money to play? What do you think about people that pay to play? Shouldn't it be the opposite?
This is normal since I remember, sometimes we also had to pay for that. Normally, you always can´t take a part on important tour without paying, if you are not headlining band. I have no problem with that, this is the competition, similar conditions for all, fight. Stronger one wins. I respect these rules.
What are the plans for the future of Hypnos? Any scheduled live show?
Yes, we plan some single shows for autumn and hopefully also small tour with one more famous headliner. I am in touch also with some promoters from Italy so I really hope that we reach Italian stages again soon.
In these years full of reunions do you think that we can hope about the return of Krabathor, maybe with the same line-up of "Lies"?
Surely there are the efforts for this reunion but I am the one who said no. It would be just nostalgia, a lot of work with no future. I wanna put all my power into something meaningful, what is currently Hypnos.
The interview is over, the last message for our readers is up to you.
Well, thanks for your support. Anyone interested in Hypnos can check out our website: www.hypnos-cz.com. Ciao!