Swiss grindcore machine Mumakil are ready with their Relapse debut Behold the Failure. The four-piece are inspired by bands like Rotten Sound, Nasum and Brutal Truth, but the band have despite this succeed in establishing a style of their own. Mumakil currently promoting Behold the Failure and recently I had the chance to ask drummer Seb about the album, Relapse Records, the bandname and many more things.

Seb interviewed by PSL

You'll have Behold the Failure out via Relapse Records in April. It must be a big step up for you to end up on that label?
This is a really important step for our band. Relapse is one of the biggest names in extreme music and we hope to be up to the challenge with this album.

You've put out various releases on labels like Bones Brigade, The Spew and Power It Up among others. How did you end on Relapse?
We re-released our first album Customized Warfare in Canada in 2007 via a label called Caustic Rhythms. Then we appeared on a split with Misery Index, which is a Relapse band, and with Inhume. This second split was released by Relapse Records as part of the Slimewave 7' goregrind series. All these releases made us known to Relapse Records and I think that is how things happened.

Did it motivate you differently that you landed on Relapse Records?
In some way, yes. We spent a lot of time on the album production, sound, microphone settings and so on. But the song-writing process stayed the same as before. Our music evolved naturally.

I've noticed that you're inspired by Rotten Sound, Nasum and Brutal Truth, among other. Are these your main inspiration?
Yes, we're really big fans of these grindcore bands, but I think that we have made our own type of grindcore. Today Mumakil is more musically independent of the bands you mentioned than we were two-three years ago.

Do you solely find inspiration within the grind and death metal genres, or do you appreciate music like punk and crust as well?
Yeah, we also like crust and hardcore punk. Actually we like every kind of extreme music!

You recorded Behold the Failure in your hometown Geneva. Was it because it was the most convenient to do so or were there other things that played in?
We recorded Behold the Failure at our guitarist's home studio, which is also our practice room. This is really easy and appropriate for a band like us to record here. We can work without pressure.

I assume it gives you more freedom to have Jerome Pellegrini record and mix the music?
Definitely, yes. This guy is a really talented guitarist and sound engineer. It's not easy to find people who know how to make a correct sound for grindcore. With Jerome, we don't have that problem.

How do you go about writing songs?
All the Mumakil songs are written and arranged during our practice sessions.

You've put out three split releases in 2008 alone. What do you think a split CD gives compared to an EP or a regular CD?
Split releases are a good way to make a band known in and outside the underground network. It's also interesting to devote maximum energy in two-three tracks for a split. There's a kind of "in your face" aspect that we like.

Do you plan to put out more splits, 7' or vinyl releases in 2009?
No. We concentrate more on our upcoming tour dates.

The name Mumakil, what does it mean?
"Mumakil" is the plural form of "Mumak" A Mumak is a war elephant that crushes everything in its path. They appear in Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. This creature represents pretty well our music.

Besides Mumakil, are you currently in other bands?
Jerome, our guitarist played in Nostromo before. Now he's also playing in a progressive stoner band called Nebra. Our bass player Jeremy has played in Knut and he's now also active in a doom band called Intercostal. I also play the drums in a death metal band from Geneva called Stump Fucking.

Do you expect to tour in support of Behold the Failure?
We have a lot of upcoming tour dates during 2009, with bands like Blockheads, Origin and Afgrund. We're playing the Obscene Extreme festival in the Czech Republic in July and we're currently working on a euro-tour with Blockheads in October.

Anything you'd like to add to conclude this interview?
Thanks a lot for the interview. Listen to Behold the Failure and I hope to see you on the road.

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