Despite interview with Anthony Cui (bassist).
Hi! Tell me about Despite. Why did you decide to name the band with such title? What kind of ideas do you explore?
We’re a metal band based in Gothenburg. The band got its name many incarnations ago but the idea remains the same. Like the name suggests, we want to keep pushing forward despite any given obstacle trying to break us. We’re like cockroaches; we’ll be doing our thing no matter what happens – no matter what “Bieber-bomb” hits the world.
Tell me more about “Synergi”? Album ideas etc…
“Synergi” suggests it all. As you might’ve guessed, “Synergi” is Swedish for synergy. Each member is a part of the clockwork. Synergy best describes the joy of playing in Despite. It is also applicable a society where everyone has to contribute in order to make the world a better place. The album is a mish-mash of all our individual ideas, our various influences and our differing styles. The title track is a polish bulldozer, while tracks like “The Perpetual Weakening” and “Timelapse” are more polished and elegantly brutal.
“Synergi” is your third album so far, and each album was released by different labels… So, now you are with Eclipse records, do you think it’ll be long time and great cooperation?
Eclipse Records has helped us make great progress, and we’d be happy to continue working with them as long as everyone’s happy.
How does your album support looks like? Some special shows, tours etc?
No tours cemented yet. We’ve been in touch with tour planners, and our aim is to get out on the road sooner or later. Meanwhile we’re playing local shows in Gothenburg. As for promotions, we’re releasing a video soon and we’re working with our sponsors to make sure the word gets out. We’ve also got awesome street teams all over the world promoting us in their local areas.
Where do you take all inspiration from?
If it’s music, it’s a potential source of inspiration. If it’s good music, it is inspiration. We’re all moving across a wide spectrum of influences, so it’s hard to be specific – but it’s safe to say Meshuggah is our common denominator.
In your opinion, what is the best way to define Despite’s sound?
Cogs turning and churning everything they catch. We’ve got an abrasive and brutal side. Although, we do have softer and more melodic spots as evident on songs like Timelapse, Triage and Sanctum Falls.
So, are you on hiatus now, just relaxed and looking for album feedbacks, or did you started to compose new stuff immediately?
We’re restless songwriters. Writing is fun, and therefore it should never be stopped. You can’t be a musician without writing. If we’d stop writing, we’d be living under false pretence.
What are your main musical influences? How huge is their influence in your sound?
Again, hard to say. Our influences vary way too much to be specific. A few bands we all enjoy are Meshuggah, Monuments, anything (well, almost) by Devin Townsend, Korn and Behemoth.
Are there any well-known musicians in particular that you would like to use in one of your upcoming albums?
Thorsten Flinck. That would be cool.
What is your personal strategy for making your music heard by a larger audience?
Touring, more albums, writing songs with variation and keeping in touch with our fans to establish a solid fanbase which we can work outwards from.
Do you have any other hobby beside music?
Plenty! Discgolf, reading, cooking, gaming and movies.
Are you all supported by your relatives towards your devotion to music?
We’re all happy campers, which I believe reflects back at our families. So yes.
How’s the metal scene in Sweden right now? Is it easy to play gigs, to buy records etc there these days? Also how it looks like if we’ll return to the ‘90s, where we have had an overdose of real death metal out of there?
Sweden left the ‘90s for good. Technology is widely available here, Swedes are moving forward fast in the digital world. Records are quite hard to acquire, though there are some devoted record stores still going strong, these are mostly available in larger cities. Gigs are easy to get, but it’s getting harder and harder to draw an audience since we’re competing with a lot of other bands – sometimes friends, but preferably bitter enemies. There’s no such thing as an overdose of real death metal. You’re being silly. Silly, silly you.
More info about Synergi by Despite at https://www.eclipserecords.com/release/synergi-despite/