1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording of the new album?
Well after the recordings, mixing and mastering we finished the details upon the art work and sent them all to the factory. The cd was released almost a month ago,
March 20th, so right now we are preparing the upcoming shows, making new merch and probably will begun to work on new songs.
2.You have a new album coming out this month, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff
you have released in the past?
There are a lot of differences considering composition, tuning and production. When we started the creation of this record we decided to separate more the guitar compositions from the bass lines. So with time we managed to make two different musical lines that complement each other instead of having one copying every single note of the other most of its time. On the new album you can hear them very well and both Ivo and Alex made a outstanding work on this matter. Also after our previous album we decided to change the tuning we always played from D to A since we added one more string to the guitar to achieve more heaviness. We already use A in our live performances since maybe 2013 but this is our first album composed and recorded with this tuning. As result our music has grown in heaviness but at the same time we're able to keep the balance between our crushing new weight and the so called "melody" increasing a lot more the musicality of our songs as a whole. Concerning production we worked with better professionals and better studios so we were waiting for a very different outcome in the new album and at the end I think we accomplished that.
3.This is the first album in 6 years, can you tell us a little bit more about what has been going on during the time span?
For those that follow us everybody knows we aren't a band that works against time to put something new every 2 or 3 years. We try to make things different every time we create and that's something very motivating since we are always trying to surpass our own musical limits. The downside of this is that we are very demanding and critical about our own ideas and many times we quit songs, riffs and musical structures just because they sound alike something previously done by us or other band or
because simply it hasn't nothing in common with the band musical path. The new album has 14 new songs but we recorded 18 so we still have some unused material to release in the future. Never the less every time we start to work on new material we say we have to be faster to have the work done though life manages to turn our expectations and everything becomes more difficult than we could ever guess. This time we were able to write the whole album in 4 years but we had some studio
problems that unfortunately prevented us from having "Ablutionary Rituals" on the expected time.
Since the previous album we played a lot in Portugal but also performed in Spain, France, Germany, England, Holland and Czech Republic. Let me tell you that we don't live from the music we make so for us we to find the right balance between our professional, family and personal lives is really quiet something that we are very proud after almost 26 years of existence.
4.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?
We always focused on the dark side of the mind theme and our lyrics deal with fictional behavior deviations, serial killers and monsters until our previous album.
With this new one we came across with new inner questions that lead us to change the normal approach we were used to do. So we left the external world of human malignancy and tried to understand the intrinsic human motives that origin the shadow self, why does it exist, what's its propose, what does it teach us, what can we learn from it...It's more personal, more human, more real right know and less global, external and fictional so we have tighten up the musical and lyrics on this new effort to evolve as band and therefore to create a more solid release.
5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Grog'?
When we decided to form the band we wanted a short, easy and strong name to be remembered. Grog it was and it fits very well!
6.The band has been around for 25 years, what is it that keeps you motivated to keep the band going for more than 2 decades?
Honestly we never planed that but as time passed things begun to grow and after many years of several difficulties we were able to finally stabilize our line-up. From that point till today we still aim to do our music and approach it differently every time we make new one. The creative process has to offer us challenges or else we would be doing the same thing over and over again. That should be the death of the artist but to be able to surpass our own musical limits in creativeness and musicianship has worked out as our grinding fuel to keep us going. We still have ideas to explore so all I wanna think is for us to be able to get there and create them.
7.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
As you can imagine we have played a lot in this last 25 almost 26 years. I consider that our time in the Obscene Extreme was awesome, also in Brutologos - Palencia we always have a great amount of fun, in Steel Warrions Rebellion - Barroselas, Butchery At Christmas Time - Covilhã, XXXapada na Tromba - Lisboa are great Portuguese fests among others. Our stage performance is very energic and powerful and we try to create a wall of sound capable of crushing the audience and squashing their ears towards madness levels. Check our videos on you tube because it's better for you to have a clue about what I am saying.
8.Do you have any touring or show plans once the new album is released?
We already have some shows planned for Portugal and one in Austria this year. Since the new album is freshly released we don't any confirmed dates so far but we are working on that.
9.Currently the band is signed to 'Murder Records', can you tell us a little bit more about this label?
Murder Records is based in Holland and is a part of the major Helldprod Records. As a division of the main label it's dedicated to the most extreme music inside the label and that's why we are working with them since 2011 when we released "Scooping the Cranial Insides" album. Also being a label with its headquarters in the middle of Europe it's easier for us to promote the band since the dominating metal countries are closer and we can enter their markets with other background since being a Portuguese band it's still not very easy around our pears around the world. Not because we ain't got great bands, because we really do but since we are far away from everything sometimes we have to duplicate our efforts to achieve the same recognition that other bands have.
10.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of grindcore and death metal?
We are a small hardworking band as you can figure it out for yourself but hey it's the underground way to dictate its laws. Never the less we have been connected to a lot of worldwide people in the past 26 years and overall the majority of the feedback is quiet positive. We also had negative reviews and people that don't like us but it's all part of the big picture fortunately we have very dedicated fans that support us and we are always reaching new ones which I think it's not bad at all
11.Where's the band heading into musically during the future?
Quiet sincerely I don't no. I mean we are Grog and we play death grind never the less we aren't afraid to do other experimentations in our music since we have nothing to prove and we are free to do it as we wish but no matter what happens we will always be Grog so the need for speed will be always there no matter what.
12.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
Currently we don't get inspired by other bands since we do our music considering our natural ability and taste within the genre. Of course you might say but I can feel the presence of 10 bands that play the same shit, which is perfectly natural since we know that originality is something very hard to find these days. Sometimes even I don't know the bands that are related to our sound so here's the thing 20 years ago it was possible to relate bands because we had 100 serving as a referential but nowadays forget it's totally impossible since that number has risen to up 100000 more. But of course we have our own preferences within the extreme music and not only so take note of the following bands that still keep on pushing the old school flame forward. Immolation, Suffocation, Malevolant Creation, Napalm Death, Obituary, Pestilence, Sinister, Avulsed, Carcass for example.
13.What are some of non musical interests?
We all have families, we like cinema, to read, to party...basically we are normal persons eh eh eh eh...
14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final word or thoughts?
Thanks a lot for promoting and supporting us. Everyone is free to contact us at our sites grogpt.bandcamp.com/ and facebook.com/grogpt/. Grind Up!