Desecravity is one of the most notable and brutal bands with an aggressive qualified fast and high-technical attitudes of Death Metal in their musical understanding from Japan.They did three killer records and they have just released the last one titled Anathema which clearly goes on the path of brutality of extreme metal music just like the previous two records they did.I talked to Yuichi Kudo who is a skillful and killer drummer and the main guy of Desecravity.He answered very polite and courteusly about his band and his musical reflections.Let’s meet with the the sharpest blade of Japan.(Grinder)
Hello Yuichi.How is life in the death front of Tokyo?
Hi there, things are great. I’m just busy doing tons of thing in the DESECRAVITY as usual like management, writing song, booking tours and so on. Because I’m responsible for all things.
I would like to congratulate you about your last monstrous full-length titled as Anathema. How are the reactions for it from press and death metal community?
Thank you. We have received a lot of excellent feedbacks in reviews, messages, and comments in SNSs. I feel like I could express my imagination and feelings through the songs in the album, so I’m happy if many listeners feel something of my expression from the album.
How did you start up this album?What ideas,notes and tunes were you into about writing and collaborating the songs?
After released our 2nd album “Orphic Signs”, I have been with a satisfied feeling for a while. I didn’t want to touch composition at the time. I started working on a new album “Anathema" from late 2016. The first song I wrote for the Anathema is Impure Confrontation within 2016. I usually spend time a couple of month for a song, it’s kind of late, want skill to write faster. I usually create a story or scene before I start writing a song. Then I use tones writing a song with musical expression. These elements are made from my imagination or experience of anything in my life.
Where did you record and mix Anathema?Who did you work with?What type of recording equipment did you use?
We recorded in the own recording room in Tokyo area and mainly I work as a producer on it. So we can play under less pressure in the familiar environment and no time limitation. Basically, we used Pro Tools system and own instrument for recording.
How do you define your last release Anathema as a record?What things have changed?Can you compare it to previous release Orphic Signs?
Nothing changed or many things changed. I mean I haven’t approached changing any musical things, never tried to play technical, faster and heavier. As I mentioned above, when I create songs, the most important things are the story and imaginations for me. They make me design like DESECRAVITY songs. It’s like an art. Example, a band wants to play sweep technique and blast beat, that’s why they put them on a song. It opposites to me, a technique is just like tools to express what I want. The pattern, phrase, riffs, melody, anything is just the result of DESECRAVITY’s expression.
Can you give us about the details about your artwork?
We asked Ryohei Hase, who is a professional artist has experienced work with Snow White movie, famous musicians and big companies, for drawing our cover art. Actually, he has stopped working as an artist lately. Anyway, firstly I told him the album theme is Anathema, then gave him some words including “Confrontation” which is one of the important words in my story. So he perfectly made the art which was expressed with my story and his imaginations with my words. He is amazing.
Yuichi,to be honest,basically you are a death metal beast behind your drum set.How have you been progressed your skills since the beginning?Can you tell us your story about being an extreme drummer?
Thank you. Well, I started playing the drums when I was 15, was learning by myself and already in metal. After a few years, I moved to the United States to touch and learn music. It was right, I had spent a great time more than expected with lots of musicians and been changing lots of thing in my mind, especially while being in music college. After I’ve been in the United States about 5 years, I got an opportunity to move to Vancouver, Canada for joining and playing in a death metal band and experienced tons of stuff with great bandmates and all friends. My music life is built on the experience even now. Then, I moved to Japan and formed DESECRAVITY for playing into the global metal scene from Japan. I play the drums almost everyday but it is not for improving skill and pursue technique or speed, I don’t confound means with the end. I just need skills for only my musical expression on a song.
What are the themes and lyrics behind Anathema?What things do you focus on lyrics in Desecravity?
I usually use myth and religious things in my songs. I like those kinds of historical stuff. Anathema is I wrote things merges a human element in actuality with historical contents.
You toured in far eastern countries for a lot of times and toured in Russia as headliner in 2013 What kinds of reactions did you take?Any comparison?
I think we couldn’t go to Europe in 2013 but toured in Russia. Well, I don't feel so much different between Asia and Russia. They have a huge passion for metal. The Russian tour was one of wonderful tours in my music life.
Do you have any plan to come for a tour over Europe and Usa this year?
Unfortunately, we don’t have a plan so far.
You have been working with Willowtip from USA since your first full-lenght.How did you start to work together?How was the deal?Are you happy about Willowtip?
Why not. We are very proud of being a part of Willowtip family for about eight years. I can’t remember exactly how I started to talk with Willowtip Records though, I had an opportunity to talk with Hammerheart Records at first, they had covered distribution in Europe area as an affiliated, so they talked to Willowtip Records about us, it was something related with the start. Then we could signed.
Can you tell us about the project of ‘’Let It Die’’?Would you like to collaborate any other video game project in future?
I received an email from Akira Yamaoka who is the music producer of Let It Die, Silent Hill series and others. It was about offering collaborate with music project of Let It Die, PS4 game. I'm very proud of hearing the offer from him but I actually hesitated if I receive it or not. Because they gave us time for only several weeks until finishing mixdown. I had to start from writing a song though, I decided to challenge it. It was really tough.
Yes, if we will have a chance to work with any companies or anything, we would like to do.
What ideas,bands and musicians were you influenced before you started it?What things made you start to play Death Metal?
I've been influenced not only death metal but also other kinds of music. I have listened to classical music a lot, even when I was a kid. When I listened to metal at first time, I thought I start wanting to play the drums. The metal sound made me comfortable like a drug. No matter how many times I am reborn, I will be in a metal band.
How was the raising as a metalhead in Tokyo?How did you get into metal and death metal?What things are different for a metalhead and an extreme metal musician in Japanese culture and life ?
I don’t remember exactly how I started listening to metal, but I borrowed a lot of metal CDs from my friend and went to CD shops for listening sample CDs and finding bands, then I listened to metal everyday, I gradually began seeking more heavy sounds and more speed. Finally, I found death metal. Since I have listened to metal, I have never stopped metal.
How do you see your progress as a band and musicians from early days to present?
We have improved technically and personally by the music and through changing members. Especially, present bandmates Yuya and Daisuke are very skillful and talented. I have seen them every week, it is easy to see their improvement. Also, they make me grow up by a synergy. These three guys have a good relationship musically and personally.
As far as I know you did a fest called “Unlimited Black Air 2014” .Can you tell us about it?
It was the first time to host a metal event called Unlimited Black Air 2014 in Tokyo, Japan. It was a new challenge for us and we wanted a stage where my band can appear in front of fans. Usually, a band is under control by an event organizer, so we wanted to try controlling the whole event once, it was really a success but tough work. It was continued to the next year and will be open in this year again.
What things and works do you guys do except being a musician in Desecravity?
I don't know much about other guys private life. We usually don’t touch private things each other. I usually spend a lot of time on music like writing song, practicing and management band, I also travel a lot, go to a concert and museums, play sports, party, and so on. I don't work much.
As regard to your musicianship,Yuichi,how should a young musician work and study music and instruments for a progress and change?
I think that it is only necessary to do what you want to do straight ahead. Do not compare yourself with others or do not imitate others. I think that you should take care of your imagination and originality. There is no need to be afraid of being different from others. That's all I can say. Regarding technical matters, ask your teacher.
Let’s back to the time of ”Implicit Obedience’’.How did you write and record that album?How was the spirit of the band between 2009-2012?Eric Rutan mixed it.Would you like to record all album in Mana in future?
Implicit Obedience era is basically the same as now. After recording, I had the opportunity to talk with Rutan when I was looking for a mixing and mastering engineer, he liked our album so much and accepted the work pleasantly. Although the 2nd album “Orphic Sign” was also mixed and mastered in Mana recording studio, the newest “Anathema” was by Unisound, Dan Swanö.
Yes, of course, if we have another opportunity to work with Mana recording studio, it would be great.
Can you advise any bands from Japan?What bands do you listen nowadays?
Every band has a different stance and how you want to do in a band is different, so I cannot advise. But one thing, if you want to become a global band like Defiled or Vomit Remnants, you should not stay in a small community forever and do more challenging without fear.
What band do I listen to? I’m just watching new King Diamond video while I’m answering your interview.
Your drumset looks unique and amazing.How did you set it up ?What kinds of musical ideas make it real?How many hours do you practice in a day?Do you have a personal studio?
When the expressiveness of a song became high, I wanted various sounds and added new parts onto the drums. It’s really difficult setting up, I’m still looking for the more comfortable settings. I usually play the drums just for fun about 1 or 2 hours in my private studio everyday and band session a couple of time every week.
It is time to end this cool conversation.Thanks a lot for your honest answers and precious time.What would you like to tell to the world and death metal freaks outside to finish this interview?
I'd like to say thank you to all who are supporting us, we look forward to seeing you some time in the future. Cheers!