BsB Interview byJon Henning Orten for "The Metal Reviews Archive" (4.6.2001)
J.H.O.: First a band history and your line-up?
B.s.B.: It all started in the summer of 98, when everybody seemed to make a coversong of Knockin' on Heaven's Door. There were even small concerts called "Heavens Door festival" in Bielefeld (Germany) where every band that applied to play there had to have a Heaven's Door cover. Well, Grummel's former Death Metal Band SHATTERGRAVES wanted to play there, too, so Grummel started makin' a cover, which was too Black for the other band members. Then his best friend Gyros and he started recording the riffs, just for fun. Actually it was so much fun, that we had the idea of ripping the Spice Girls, too, just because they were famous and so damn ridiculous. After that we did the Backstreet Boys one, and since we were proud of the results, we decided to publish the works on the internet, where Mp3.com was the largest platform out there. And so the Blackseed Boys were born. The orchestral Shadowgate cover was developed way before all that, but we thought that would be a nice addition to all the pop songs, thus Nintendo Classics were incorporated into the BsB concept as well.
For special occasions we asked friends / relatives to help us chant, sing or scream the one or other passage, but basically all the work is done by the two of us.
J.H.O.: Under "musical influences" on mp3.com, you've mentioned Backstreet Boys and Spice Girls. Do you appreciate listening to such "music", or does it just inspire you to make covers?
B.s.B.: Man, you should see our rooms.... full of Britney posters and Boyband beddings! No, seriously, that commercial crap music is just abused and ruined by us. We're forced to listen to it some times, just to pick up the chords / melodies, and even that is often more than we can endure. Take the Michael Jack-ass song. One fuckin' riff the whole time! Seven hellish minutes! That's twice as evil as all Dark Funeral Songs together ;o) Well, after all none of our music would exist without those originals, in so far they ARE a musical influence.
J.H.O.: What inspires you, and what kind of music do you listen to?
B.s.B.: If we knew why our music sounds as it does... we were psycologists. However, concoiusly we're inspired the mortal nightmares of exquisite Metal bands such as Cradle of Filth, Emperor, Hypocrisy, Angizia, Meshuggah, Dimmu Borgir,... You know what? Check out our Logo and you'll have the main BsB influences. Additionally we listen to Soundtracks such as Conan - The Barbarian or Bram Stoker's Dracula and they influence us, too, if you take pieces like Satana de Janeiro or Shadowgate. Oh, and of couse we are inspired by our own songs....
J.H.O.: Have you got much positive feedback on your covers?
B.s.B.: Oh yeah, tons of teddys and bras pile up in our cellars, we get millions of love letters dayly - just like the REAL stars... ;o) No, we got more positive feedback than we ever thought we'd get. Every day one or two e-mails from interested people telling us what they like about our stuff and encouraging us with ideas to future coversongs.
But of course there are those upholders of moral standards that hinder us spreading the Black Seed. For example other Mp3 providers. Actually Mp3.com state that they don't allow coversongs either, but maybe they just don't realize that our songs are covers, he he he!
J.H.O.: I like your Britney Spears and Spice Girls covers, turning those ugly pieces of commercial radio hits into black metal killers. What are your planning to cover in the future?
B.s.B.: We have no special ideas what to cover next, but we do have some criteria with that we choose our victims. For example we make sure that the songs are more or less worldwide known, that they are in the charts for more than a couple of days and that they are REALLY bad ones. As for the computer songs, we just picked the ones that we have personal relations to, that we played often as kids or the like. We're curious ourselves what songs the future will bring.
J.H.O.: Will Blackseed Boys always be a coverband, or will you ever create your own songs as well?
B.s.B.: We, the members of the Blackseed Boys, will and do create our own songs as well, but not under the banner of blasphemic Blackseed Boys. The concept we follow in that project is that of a totally non-serious mocking of all klishees, Pop as well as Metal.
J.H.O.: Have you got much material under construction?
B.s.B.: No, unfortunately we have no material under construction. We mostly work on one song at the time, and now that we've just finished the Super Mario Land, we haven't found another one yet.
J.H.O.: Have you though about recording a demo and try getting a record deal?
B.s.B.: We did think about that, but not really seriously. Now, thinking about it, we did even send a demotape to Nuclear Blast in the early BsB days, but they didn't answer, they probably missed the Hammerfall vocals and easy listening chorus. But we think it's pretty tough to get a record deal with only coversongs anyway, for the label would have to pay lots of other labels just to publish our stuff.
On the other hand one of our ideals is not to become commercial. We have fun writing the songs, and we don't expect any more from the audience than take some time and enjoy it themselves. The way we spread our music now is that of freeware. Anybody who has one of our songs is free to copy it as many times as he / she likes.
Since many people ask us for CDs, we think about publishing one. We compared several offers from different firms, because it would be best to give 'em away for non-profit prices, but producing a CD with booklet and stuff like that requires more work / money than we expected. So we'll probably sell the CDs over Mp3.com, too, even if that's gonna cost the consumer some bucks.
J.H.O.: Can you describe the writing process? Are you building up your music like .mod files (since you use Impulse Tracker)? How important is the use of samples in your music?
B.s.B.: Okay, first we transcribe the original song. Not exactly, but the main themes / melodies / structure / whatever. Then we think about a conceptional frame, such as "This is gonna be brutal Death Metal" or "Let's make one more piece of varied Black Metal", things like that. Now we transform the pop "riffs" into guitar riffs of the specified kind. In the course of recording those we programm drums, keyboards and the like, add one or another melody and make more riffs than one from a single idea in the original, just to make it better than it was. We try to give the whole thing more dynamics, such as keyboard interludes, tempo changes, stuff like that. Finally we record the vocals, mix the whole thing and encode it as mp3 file.
Even now, that we abandoned Impulse Tracker and exchanged it for Logic Audio the songwriting process hasn't changed much. It's just a lot more comfortable to programm Keys 'n Drums and record the guitars, and the whole thing gets a much higher sound quality.
We do use samples, but just for soundeffects that we can't produce ourselves, e.g. the screams in the beginning of the Sliced Girls or the Britney Spears outro.
J.H.O.: Have you ever played live?
B.s.B.: No, we've never played live and we probably never will. Our music is just not playable live. Well, if you supply us with a drummer who can play that, two or three keyboarders and another guitarist, we might think about it...
J.H.O.: Do you play or have you played in other bands? What genres?
B.s.B.: Grummel right now plays lead guitar in the Goth band XANDRIA (www.xandria.de). He did have an own Death Metal band called SHATTERGRAVES (his first creative approach to Metal music) which he founded in 1995 and which ceased to exist in 1999. Both of us have own recorded / sketched ideas of the most different kind, but nothing with great future yet.
J.H.O.: What is the meaning of life?
B.s.B.: For us the meaning of life in this moment seems to be to BE....
J.H.O.: An ending word?
B.s.B.: This goes out to all you grim Black Metalheads in the world: Don't take the "scene" too serious, be creative and keep up an honest smile!