To this writer, the P.H.O.B.O.S. sound suggests a fusion of Swans, Neurosis, Scorn, Khanate, Earth, Godflesh, Aborym, and Sunno))). Would the band consider that an accurate reflection of themselves sonically ?
I am heavily into all this stuff, except Aborym that I do not know.
When the 'average' listener talks about 'Doom' music Sabbath/St Vitus/Trouble/Cathedral etc), what P.H.O.B.O.S. does will probably not be the first thing they think of - in one line, how would the band describe their music to such a person ?
There are elements of doom in P.H.O.B.O.S. music (slowness, heaviness) but not only doom parts or other doom elements like psychedelia, mourning or laments. But if the doom fan is opened enough, the spirit of doom lies in the industrial parts and layers too.
While their music is coldly industrial doom, the atmosphere created is fetid, dank, horrifyingly aggressive, almost "Black Metal" in flavour. Does the band feel 'allied' in any way to the BM scene ?
P.H.O.B.O.S. is not allied to any particular scene, although BM is one of my favorites for decades, when I started to listen to Venom, Bathory or Hellhammer. Like other scenes in metal, BM has diluted itself into a great masquerade, but its spirits still survives thru other forms. IMO, early :Wumpscut: or Khanate are possessed by the BM vibe.
With only Frederic Sacri and Alexis Fouillet as active members, how does P.H.O.B.O.S. recreate their sound in the 'live' environment ?
Since 2003, P.H.O.B.O.S. is not a band anymore, but my solo project, definitely (Alexis Fouillet left after the recording of the mCD in 2001). Public execution of the music is not a part of the process. P.H.O.B.O.S. is about experimenting and creating, not demonstrating in a live rock or metal format.
What touring plans does the band have in support of "Tectonics"? Will there be any UK dates to look forward to ?
No live promotion is scheduled.
Where does the inspiration for the music and lyrics come from ? What drives the band creatively ?
Principally an underlying disgust and scorn for mankind, its arrogance and its uselessness, that shall be wiped out on the surface of Mother Earth. This does inspire my compositions, a wish for punishment, added to a fear of the forthcoming awakening of the purifying forces below. But musically, I am only satisfied when I feel those feelings are lifted by something new, non-conformist and disturbing. Drones, noise and dissonance are the best weapons for this, and the main challenge is to master them. Moreover these nihilistic themes are not given through obvious words in a 'spit your rage' punky way, but hidden.
Are the band close to any other French extreme acts (such as Arkhon Infaustus etc) ? Does the band consider that scene to be healthy now ?
Except with my labelmates Blut Aus Nord, I am not connected with any other French extreme acts, despite the quality of some bands. P.H.O.B.O.S. is located in France, but I don't care about a so-called French scene that much. Quality and vision, extreme or not, is not a matter of country but simply of faith in your art.
How did the deal with Candlelight come about ? How many albums are you signed for ?
In fact Appease Me, owned by Blut Aus Nord members, was interested in P.H.O.B.O.S. when they heard an early version of 'Tectonics'. At the same time, they started their collaboration with Candlelight for promotion and distribution, then bands of the French roster were absorbed in a profitable way. I signed for 3 albums.
What expectation "sales-wise" does the band have for "Tectonics" ?
P.H.O.B.O.S. views on the market are pretentiousless and are only guided by arts. The more the better. Infecting the masses yes, but without compromise.
Where will the band go next, musically speaking ? At what point will they start thinking about their next album ?
No specific direction is defined so far, but some ideas are boiling. At the moment I'm working on sound sampling, from unexpected sources ... Still longing for darkness and insanity.
Your album and website artwork is very dark, disturbing, and vivid, does the imagery (with it's seemingly) " Dante-esque " visions play a part in P.H.O.B.O.S. 'live' show ?
These visions still inhabits my mind, they guide me to find the musical and conceptual inspiration, but they are not destined to be transferred on a stage. They're not a gimmick or easy illustrations, I feel this volcanic presence under my feet, soon to explode. I was born and raised on a volcano-island, where sulphur smells, natural danger and beauty of the fires have possessed my body and soul from real experience; not after some National Geographic documentary.
Which band or musician would you like to erase from history ? and why ?
Far too many to be mentioned. Especially among today's metal scene ...
What have you been listening to lately ? Have you got any listening recommendations for our readers ?
Miscellaneous interests at the moment: Om, Tarantula Hawk, early Swans, 2nd Gen, Hyatari, Apoptygma Berzerk, Diamanda Galas, Nortt, 5ive, The Axis Of Perdition, Goblin, and more ...