Exclusive Interview: Malfested open up on “Shallow Graves”!
What more reason that post mortem boredom could you have for forming a new Death Metal band in the middle of a plague? Yet to leave to sanctuary of the mortuary are Malfested, a new Death Metal band from Kortrijk, Belgium who take influence from 90’s Death Metal acts like Deicide and Bloodbath to forge a a concept record which tells of a great battle between man and the undead for their debut record “Shallow Graves“…
Our first impression of “Shallow Graves” was how slick and polished it sounds; as a new band, perhaps from a collection of seasoned musicians? So how have you found the reaction to the record from those who have heard it? Will you introduce yourselves? Who is in Malfested?
[Niels/Guitar]: We are also very pleased with the sound on this record. Indeed we have been playing in bands for quite a while now and “Shallow Graves” turned out exactly how we wanted it… Modern but not over-polished and brutal without down-tuning the guitars 4 or 5 steps. Also when bands associate themselves with old-school Death Metal they tend to go for the Buzzsaw tone in spirit of those great old Swedish bands but that just didn’t work for us.
[Arne/Vocals]: All credits for sound go to Cyril Hostyn who recorded and mastered the album with us. We became good friends during the recording and he will be our first choice when we record the next one. Since the album is yet to be released, we can’t really say what the reactions will be but we had many positive feedback for our single of the album “Masked with the Skulls of the Fallen”.
Can you tell us a bit about how the idea to form a band came about?
[Niels/Guitar]: a few years back I had the idea to start a death Metal project. I was playing in a hardcore band for 10 years by then and I was hungry for metal! It was going to be a studio project called Heinous Anus, extreme death metal leaning towards grindcore and I was going to release a short EP called “Death by Diarrhea”. A bit of fun right? It never happened and I started a Metalcore band instead. That band ended by COVID’s cruel deathblow and I got bored real quickly… That’s how Malfested came to be! I asked my former frontman if he was up for some brutal death metal project and he was on board before I could finish the question.
[Arne/Vocals]: We wanted to record an EP as soon as possible! This year 2020 the year of the great plague. He took most riffs from the Heinous Anus project he wrote years before and pieced them together into Shallow Graves! We also dropped the dumb band name of course! We don’t want to be mistaken for a grindcore or slam band! We started recording 2 weeks after forming the band!
Malfested was formed in 2020 and being the year of the pandemic, does that mean the band is a studio project or are you itching to play these songs live?
Yes, Malfested was formed out of necessity! The greatest enemy during these times is not the sickness but the boredom. It also claims it’s victims right? So it’s a studio project…for the moment! Not involving a full band for the first time really made things move much faster than usual. We talked a small bit about performing live but we always have to remind ourselves that live shows just isn’t a thing at the moment, and won’t be for a long ass time. We have a full band in mind, but everybody is very dedicated to their current bands. So playing live in the future? Sure maybe, if we would get an offer we couldn’t refuse! We guess it will happen at least once.
The concept of “Shallow Graves” fits very well with the current Global situation, however you’ve also made it timeless. How conscious were you about avoiding referencing the modern plague when constructing the lyrics?
[Arne/Vocals]: The concept of Shallow Graves is about a rampant deathly plague that can only be stopped by embracing the lesser of two evils! We really didn’t want to refer to COVID, we’re not that kind of band battling actuality and politics.
[Niels/Guitar]: It’s all about zombies and dark fantasy. We love it and even tried to write our own stories…doing it through lyrics was challenging but fun!
When you have band practice and it’s time for a break, what foods are regularly on the Malfested table?
[Niels/Guitar]: We eat before practice! Afterwards (and during) we’re mostly very thirsty! I remember some late Monday nights when we usually get together weekly to have some drinks.
[Arne/Vocals]: and calling in sick on Tuesdays!
Outside of the World of Metal, what are your inspirations?
[Arne/Vocals]: We mentioned zombies and dark fantasy before! Like most (death) metal fans we really enjoy fictional horror in all its manifests.
[Niels/Guitar]: But also people who emit great energy and determination! Seeing somebody being amazing, it doesn’t matter what…With passion and through hard work! We can feed of their positive energy and make us want to excel in our own hobby.
What is next for Malfested? We are already working on our next album for 2021. Since shows are out of the picture for now, we want to focus on studio and let our music be heard. And of course have fun together in the process.