Voodoo Shock interview with Uwe Groebel
by Chris Barnes / Custom Heavy
Rising from the smoldering ashes of Rise Above recording artists Naevus, comes Germany's VOODOO SHOCK, a riff-oriented doom machine that is along the lines of The Obssesed or Blessed Realm. Custom Heavy talks to singer/guitarist Uwe Groebel about his former band, the current state of Voodoo Shock and the upcoming full-length on Hegedüs Márk's psycheDOOMelic label.
Custom Heavy: What happened with your other band, Naevus? You guys had a record out on Lee Dorrian's famous "Rise Above" label, and it looked like you guys were doing pretty well....
Uwe Groebel: Well, not really. All went veeeeeery slow. We recorded the album in May 1997 and mixed it afterwards. The release was then in March 1998, along with Sheavy's album. It was a time as I went to the north of Germany which was 700km away to do a special education. So as I came back then in summer 1998, nothing happened from the label. Sheavy and Orange Goblin were asked to do the Dynamo Festival in Holland, we weren't. Then it was talk of doing a song for the upcoming RISE ABOVE sampler Rise 13 and we recorded stuff. As well a song for the Trouble tribute. We sent the songs to RISE ABOVE and they said they're satisfied, but nothing more happened.
That was October 1998. In January 1999 I got a call from Will while saying we're dropped and they can't get more money from their financial supporters MUSIC FOR NATIONS for us - and by the way, the songs are really weak!!!!!!!! - What?
In May 1999 we split up as at first our bass player quit, and I didn't have any energy to do new songs and old ones with a new bassist. That's the thing. I didn't feel bad doing this so I thought it might have been right. Anyway, we have a song from the last session LOST CONFIDENCE on the I AM VENGEANCE movie soundtrack on MeteorCity. Out now.
Custom Heavy: How does your new band Voodoo Shock differ from Naevus in terms of your overall sound? Was a new sound something you really wanted or did it just happen?
Uwe Groebel: With Voodoo Shock we started in spring 2000. We are a three piece which is a lot easier to play live. It's a bit more rough and more heavy. The melodies which I played a lot are not part of it anymore. It's maybe more riff orientated, and it's more old fashioned. We experiment some things out and we don't like to give us a small, limited way to play only. We had good reactions for the first two shows (one with Mirror Of Deception in Germany and the a week later with Phased4°F in Switzerland.)
Custom Heavy: How do you approach songwriting in Voodoo Shock with Oliver (bass) and Mathias (drums)? Is it a team effort or are you still the main songwriter?
Uwe Groebel: We don't rehearse too much, maybe every fortnight as Mathias is out for his education within the week and he comes home on weekends only. So I'm writing all the music and we put it together then. You can't say it's my project, we try to be a band. But it definitely sounds as it is as I have Oli and Matze in the band.
Custom Heavy: What do you think the appeal of Doom is? It's fans are small, (but growing) and tremendously loyal. Is it the music, the camaraderie or both?
Uwe Groebel: I guess both. There is support from everywhere. It's a big family, no matter which style it is.
Custom Heavy: How do you feel about the Doom scene in Germany? How does Voodoo Shock fit in?
Uwe Groebel: We only have a small scene. We have some bands which support each other, we fitted the place with Voodoo Shock which I left with NAEVUS I guess.
Custom Heavy: Are you guys planning to record a full length album at any point? Any label interest?
Uwe Groebel: Yes we sent out stuff already. We had interests but nothing serious for us. We thought about doing a split release Mark Hegedus' Psychedelic Fanzine with the band TOLLWUET from Switzerland, but they split two weeks ago. So we now take the chance and do a whole album on it. The label will be called PsycheDOOMelic. I like Mark's work and I respect everything he does. He's really serious and gives us his best work. I know that. So I like to help him out for his first label step instead. We see how it all works out. Our time schedule says that we are going to record in August hopefully for an October release.
Custom Heavy: Any last words?
Uwe Groebel: Thank you very much for this kind of support. Anyone who's interested in the songs we did can send some cash for postage and I will send a copy of the four songs, including St. Vitus classic PATRA which appears on the actual St. Vitus compilation on Raven Moon Records. Please send $5 for overseas and $3 within Europe. Get in touch at email@example.com or www.voodooshock.de and please support Mark at: www.psychedelicfanzine.de and mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org
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