Under the Church are a crushing death metal band and here is an interview with band member Erik Qvick:
So how long after the break-up of Nirvana 2002 did Under the Church form? How many members from Nirvana 2002 are in Under the Church?
We started the band not too long after the last gigs we did with N2002, we wanted to do some more playing.
It´s me (Erik) and Lars who were in Nirvana2002, who are also playing in Under The Church.
Now how did you come up with your name and where any other names thrown around before you came up with the current one?
I "stole" the name from legendary fanzine editor/concert arranger/recordlabel owner Sigge Sigfridsson back in the late 80´s....the name stuck with me through the years, it´s just a very cool sounding and confusing name I think. There were no other ideas for names for this band.
How long do you think it took before you came up with the sound that you wanted with the band and do you think you’re an original band?
The sound was there as soon as the first guitar chord was struck, we are what we are. I don´t think that we original, but there is a distinct difference in being original and being a copy, it´s a great misunderstanding that being unoriginal is synonym with being "Inferior Quality Music", we´re not original but we write really good tunes and that´s the only measurement that´s valid. We´re not copying a sound that is synonym with swedish deathmetal, this is what we are.
How long had the band been around before you released that demo in 2013? What are your thoughts on that demo these days? Where did you record it and how did the recording go?
We started writing music sometime after those last gigs as N2002, I don´t remember how long that took until the demo was done though. The demo is way better than the self titled EP that came out last year, but that´s how it usually is. Which is why the new full length actually is the demo that should´ve preceded it, that´s why it sounds so good! We recorded and mixed both the Demo and the "Rabid Armageddon" at the same studio, it's a small dubreggae studio here in Reykjavik Iceland called History, the studio engineer is absolutely clueless when it comes to Metal, which is perfect for us, that way the sound can be exactly the way we want, when you´re working with a "Metal Studio Type of person" there's a big risk that they will impose their vast knowledge of how a "Metal Recording" should sound, which almost always include a sterile and boring sound. We recorded the album by ourselves with Gnuzi as engineer, but we dialed in the sounds and mixed it ourselves.
Now a year later you released a self-titled Ep. Did you put that out or did a label put that out? Is it still for sale and what are your thoughts on the Ep these days?
Pulverised Records released the Ep that came out last year, they´re also releasing the full length. The Ep is still for sale on CD and digital format, the Vinyl and Tape versions are sold out I think. The Ep has some really good tunes but the sound of the mixed recording isn´t up to par with the music, the drum sound is horrible, hence the reason us recording the full length ourselves, I wouldn´t take that chance again having someone butchering the Debut Album at birth.
Now just recently you released an absolutely crushing album called “Rabid Armageddon”. Which label put this out and how did the recording go for this release?
Thanks, well, Pulverised Records releases "Rabid Armageddon" on Cd and Digital format, there´s a Vinyl version being released early 2016 as well. Then there's a limited edition on Tape/Cassette as well of the album, which is being released by the Spanish label Hexed Cemetary. So if you´d all please run out and buy all of these releases, our retirement is soon to follow.
How has the feedback been for this as in my eyes and ears it is one of the best releases of 2015?
Thank you for the kinds words, so far the feedback and reviews have been great...we´re really happy with the album.
Has the band been able to play many live shows and do you think you’re a good live band and do you ever play any live songs for fun and if so much ones?
Since the band is spread out over different countries it´s been a hassle with rehearsals and even worse being able to do gigs. But we´re finally getting our lazy band up on stage for the release party AND debut gig in Stockholm Sweden on the 28th of november, most likely we´re a killer live band....on the other hand we´ve never played live before, so maybe we´ll suck? Either way, we have a pretty good set list that we´re working on consisting of music from both the Ep and Full length.
Tell me a bit about each band member, including yourself.
I play drums in the band Under The Church. Lars plays Bass in the band Under The Church. MiK sings in the band Under The Church. Wallin plays guitar in the band Under The Church. Klacke plays guitar in the band Under The Church. We´re a bunch of old farts that plays death metal, that´s pretty much it really.
Is there still a good solid underground metal scene in Sweden these days?
It´s so many good bands in Sweden that it´s just ridicuolus, I don´t know how "underground" any scene anywhere is these days with the Internet and all...but there´s a whole bunch of bands doing fantastic stuff. Namedropping starts here: Black Trip, Monolord, Obnoxious Youth, Bombs of Hades to name a few.
Does the band as a whole have any goals for yourselves?
We have no goals, none other than that we´ll keep on writing death metal and try to release a new album no longer than a year from now, it would be nice to do some gigs abroad as well...we´ll see what happens.
For someone who has never heard of the band, what would you say you sound like?
We play Death Metal. No more, no less.
Do you feel it is tougher now more than ever with so bands and labels that it is harder for a band to get noticed seeing how there is so many shitty bands out there?
It´s hard to say whether the demise of the traditional music industry and major record labels is a blessing or a curse, I think the same goes for the Internet, the Internet provides many opportunities but it's easy to get lost in a blur of static noise.
Where do you see the underground scene in 5 years and do you hate when people steal music and then post it on-line for free?
I don´t have a clue how the Underground Scene will be in 5 years, but hopefully it will be doing well. I don't hate when people put my music up for downloading, but I think that it´s unnecessary for them to do that.
Do many people these days realize that there are members of Nirvana 2002 in the band at all?
I don´t know really, in a way it´s irrelevant who´s in the band...my guess is that if people knew that our guitar players were in Merciless and Morbid they couldn´t care less about N2002. The name Nirvana 2002 gets brought up a lot in interviews though.
Please plug any merchandise or websites that the band has.
Do check out Pulverised rec´s webshop for Under The Church music and Merch. https://pulverised.bandcamp.com/album/rabid-armageddon
Any last words and horns up for the interview.
Thank you for the support and interest in Under The Church, stay tuned for more raw deathmetal!
Interview by Chris Forbes