|Interview by Burt Wolf with Ricardo Fernandes, bassist for REQUIEM LAUS!
Interview done October 17th, 2007.
I'M NOT TO FAMILIAR WITH REQUIEM LAUS, SO CAN YOU PLEASE GIVE SOME OF THE BANDS
HISTORY UP TO THIS POINT?
The band came about around 1992 coming from Miguel's former band MORBIDATORY, he joined Bruno
Sousa (guitar), Tony (bass) & his brother Marcelo (on the drums) & started doing this mix of Death Metal with
some Doom melodic elements. They released the first demos one not cataloged called "REQUIEM LAUS" mainly
rehearsal stuff on cassette, then the first demo cassette "LIFE FADING EXISTENCE". Then they released "For
The Ones Who Died" in 1996 now with Oscar Pereira on bass. This demo went to become a classic cult release
& got the band great exposure both nationally & internationally with great reviews. After a few shows around
Portugal, Bruno & Oscar left the band, so it took about 2 years fro Miguel to find both me (Ricardo, for bass) &
Dani (guitar). We started jamming the old tunes & getting some new ones done. Done a few shows then we got
Jorge Castro for keyboard (he also does the lyrics for the band). Released the "THROUGH AEONS" CD in 2000,
got some touring around Portugal with local & also some international bands like AVULSED. Around 2001 there
was some line up changes & things weren't working well, so from 2000-2002 until 2005 the band was no more.
Then on 2005 we returned, started taking things more serious trying to make things work better. We had Luis
for a while which he did a few shows with us, then Jorge Abreu (former DRAWNED IN TEARS / BLUE
SOUND TRAFFIC) joined us & recorded with us the "PROMO 2006", did a few live gigs around Portugal
including a festival with bands as BOLT THROWER, GOD DETHRONED, HATE, CARPATHIAN FOREST,
KEEP OF KALESSIN...things have taken a different level now. We have had a great response from international
& national media as well, great reviews & lots of people around the world have gotten to listen to our sound
since we put it all for free download at the official site. Now we have the new tracks recorded for "The Eternal
Plague" our first full release, with new drummer (again, LOL) Gabriel (also in PESTIFER). Until the end of
November we will have announced with whom we will release it.
WHY WAS THE NAME REQUIEM LAUS CHOSEN AS THE
It was kind of respect to Miguel's favorite Classical composer think
we have that more doomy dark melodies like the Requiem work by
that famous composer.
WHO HAS HELPED INFLUENCE YOU GUYS IN MUSIC & IN
LIFE IN GENERAL TO GET YOU WHERE YOU ARE TODAY?
Everything in life influences the way the music ends up sounding. But
musically everything we listen to daily, from DISMEMBER, SEPTIC
FLESH, old ANATHEMA & PARADISE LOST, AMORPHIS,
BOLT THROWER, SATYRICON & DIMMU BORGIR. I listen to
lots of Classic Rock, Miguel to lots of BOSSA NOVA & Classical
music, Dani is more old school Death Metal, so we got a wide range
of influences that in any other way influence how we sound.
YOUR MUSIC BLENDS IN A FEW DIFFERENT STYLES. HOW WOULD YOU BEST DESCRIBE THE
SOUND OF REQUIEM LAUS?
Yeah, we are a mix of melodic Death Metal with some more Black Metal driven riffs. These new songs really
show what we are about. Can't wait to get them out there.
YOUR NEWEST RELEASE IS A FIVE SONG DEMO CD. WHEN WAS IT RELEASED & HOW WELL
HAS IT BEEN DOING FOR YOU GUYS SO FAR?
Yeah, it has gotten great reviews all around. Still gets reviews these days. We sent it all over the place last year
when we released it & the response has been good from both media & Metalheads.
HAS IT DRAWN ANY LABEL INTEREST IN THE BAND? IF SO, WHO HAVE YOU BEEN TALKING
We have talked with some, the music business is harder these days than it was in the past, so we have a few in
mind to release it. It's not a case of choosing the biggest, but the one that will give us more support, touring wise
& all that with promotion.
CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT THE LYRICAL CONTENT IN YOUR SONGS & WHO WRITES
They are mainly written by a friend of the band Jorge Ribeiro De Castro, except on the "PROMO 2006" CD
which were written by Miguel Freitas. These new tracks are all with lyrics by Jorge again, apart for one which is
written by myself, Miguel liked it so much he wanted to use it on one of the new songs. The themes, well I think
Jorge Castro would be the best to explain this part, but the way I see it, it's about society & the choices we all
make & what goes on with each religious beliefs & well, the world is a very strange place & we express our
point of view through these lyrics together with the feeling we put on the songs.
HOW WOULD YOU SAY THE BAND HAS CHANGED, IMPROVED OR EVOLVED SINCE YOUR
EARLIER RELEASES "LIFE FADING EXISTENCE" & "FOR THE ONES WHO DIED"?
I guess with me & Dani joining the band, things took a faster approach. I guess we brought something that
works well with what Miguel had been doing for awhile. With these new songs the band sounds much more
evolved with faster & more complex songs, but still maintaining that eerie melodic parts mixed with oriental
guitar licks. In the end I think it all works very well & for those that like the "PROMO 2006" CD, will love this
new 12 track release "THE ETERNAL PLAGUE".
WHY DID YOU DO A RE-RELEASE OF "FOR THE ONES
WHO DIED" FROM 1996 IN 1999?
Cause it first was released on cassette in 1999 it came out on CD,
for those that wanted it on that format & for those who hadn't
listened to it before.
WHAT HAPPENED TO LEAD THE BAND TO TAKE A
BREAK FROM 2002 TO 2005?
Around 2001 I had to leave the band & they went & started
playing with a couple or 3 different bass players, then Miguel had
a problem with his leg ended up taking some time off too, for
physical therapy. After that Marcelo left the band too...no hard
feelings, some members had different things to do.
ARE THERE ANY FUNNY OR INTERESTING BAND
STORIES THAT STICK OUT THAT YOU COULD SHARE
I could, but I guess it would be better to show you the video evidences. hahahah! We kinda have a lot of fun
together, be it at rehearsal or doing shows & recording. That's why we still do this!
HOW DID YOU GET HOOKED UP WITH STRICTLY HEAVY MANAGEMENT? HOW HAS IT BEEN
WORKING WITH THEM?
That deal is off since they decided not to work with bands outside the USA. Don't know if they are "on" at all
really, so nothing we gained or lost with that deal.
WHAT DO THE BAND MEMBERS DO WHEN NOT DOING ANY WORK FOR THE BAND TO
OCCUPY THEIR TIME?
We all have our day jobs & regular life, the band is taken as a serious hobby, we try to do as much as we can get
our hands on. I also offer my services as a designer for bands artwork, CD covers & stuff & Miguel does his
accoustic/classical guitar playing at some local hotels too.
WHAT'S ONE THING YOU'D THINK PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO FIND OUT ABOUT YOU?
MMMM, I guess that we have been a band for so many years & only now are gonna release our first full length
WHAT WAS THE FIRST ALBUM YOU REMEMBER BUYING? WHAT WAS THE FIRST CONCERT
YOU EVER WENT TO?
I think it was GUNS N ROSES "APPETITE FOR DESTRUCTION" & first gig was a local band DRAWNED IN
TEARS, international band was MEGADETH.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MISCONCEPTIONS OF LIFE IN PORTUGAL?
I won't go into politics or social aspects of the country apart from the usual preference for all that is from outside
rather than see with the same eyes the music that is done nationally.
WHO ARE SOME OF THE BANDS, LABELS OR ZINES WORTH CHECKING OUT FROM
Zines, I guess those that reviewed our CDs in the past, haha! Don't recall one good label... Now bands, that's a
different story, a lot of good Metal around here like: PITCHBLACK, THE RANSACK, THE FIRSTBORN,
HOLOCAUSTO CANIBAL, EPPING FOREST, CORPUS CRISTII, NEPTHYS, NEUROTIC & many more
I can't recall right now.
WHAT CAN WE LOOK FORWARD TO NEXT FROM
The release of "THE ETERNAL PLAGUE" & hopefully
some touring outside Portugal. Who knows what the future
WHAT WERE YOU DOING BEFORE THIS
INTERVIEW? WHAT WILL YOU DO NOW THAT IT'S
Just had breakfast & played a bit CSI: 4 HARD EVIDENCE,
haha. Now I'll probably go make lunch.
THANX FOR TAKING THE TIME TO ANSWER MY
QUESTIONS. If I LEFT ANYTHING OUT THAT YOU'D
LIKE TO ADD, GO RIGHT AHEAD. THANX!
Thanks a lot for the support & for making this interview & hope goes well to you & your readers, keep it Metal
& keep it true. Kind "Metal" regards! - Ricardo