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Pastor interview

Out of the remains of long forgotten heavy psych monstrosity arise Pastor, which is a new band influenced by good ol' dirty rock'n'roll. We spend some time to discuss about their new album out on Who Can You Trust? Records. Enjoy them!

When and how did the members of Pastor meet?

Arik: I actually started the whole thing with this crazy guy called ''Shardik''. I can't really remember when and where I met him though. I think we met in a bar and I started babbering like ''Hey man I want to start a rock band thing... like heavy rock.. kinda 70's style ya know?'' he was totally in for the kill! 
So we started a band kinda thing with some friends back then but it didn't worked out and we left to join our own thing ''PASTOR'', think we jammed together for almost a year till we found our drummer Alex. 

Alex: I met Arik at a Danava/Saviours Show back in 2012 in Austria. I got there with my friends and he was already hanging out outside. I went to the bar for a beer and he was standing right next to me. They were playing Sir Lord Baltimore at the venue and we both sang along to the lyrics. We started talking and he told me he was forming a band. It was obvious I had to join. I originally wanted to play guitar but there were already two guitarist (him and Shardik) so I thought I am just gonna start banging the drums. It was love at first sight. We met our bass player Georg over the internet. One time I showed up at the rehearsal and there was this mean looking guy playing bass like hell. The love story continued...

Where are you originally from?

Arik: I was born in Israel but grew up in Styria/Austria. Freakin countryside man boring and nothing to do. I was a weird child. The whole rock n roll thing started when I moved to the city Vienna. From there on my life went downhill haha. 
Shardik is from Lower Austria and Georg is from Linz/Upper Austria  but they all ended up in Vienna sooner or later.

Alex: I am from Burgenland/Austria. I moved to Vienna because of university and trying to get a life together. Instead of that, I joined Pastor.

What’s the lineup in Pastor right now?  Is this your original lineup or have you all gone through any lineup changes since the band started?

Alex: Actually there were no line up changes. Arik and Shardik started playing with two other guys and I think they called themselves "Moon" back then. We played two songs from that line up but changed some riffs and later on stopped playing these songs altogether. We met our bass player through the internet and ever since that it was a consisting line up.

Arik: If someone leaves, this band is through!

What was the local music scene like where you grew up?

Alex: To me it was awesome! When I lived on the countryside we had a lot of Punk, Hardcore and Screamo bands around town. These were some of my first concert experiences when I was about 14 years old and ever since then I totally fell in love with Punk. There was this local punk band called Determination and they were touring and shit and they were totally fast and wild. I was super into that and wanted to do that myself.

Arik: There ain't been shit at least so far I remember. Like I said I was a weird child and the whole music thing came later.

Are any of you in any other bands or do you have any side projects going on at this point?

Alex: I am singing in Avalanche. It is a Vienna based Sludge/Hardcore call it whatever you want band. We recorded some 7", tapes and a 12“ and got on the road quite often. At the time it is pretty mellow but I think we’ll get our act together and play more in the future. Georg is playing guitar in a band called Mothers Of The Land from Vienna. You should definitely check them out!

Arik: Ain't got time for that in the moment bro.

What does the name Pastor mean or refer to?

Alex: I think we were just going for the most shittiest name ever...  Actually I don’t really know but I can only say it has definitely nothing to do with any religion stuff.

Arik: I think Shardik and me came up with the name when we where drinkin' and spinning records at his place we just thought it sounds heavy but actually I don't know either haha.  

What’s the songwriting process like for Pastor?

Alex: Usually Arik and Shardik come up with some riffs. I try to lay some beats over it and then we work out the details. It is really super chilled and a Pastor song usually comes pretty natural. We also jam a lot and that’s pretty cool as well. 

Arik: Yeah its like Alex said. We get into our rehearsal cave and start jammin. He just forgot to mention all the beers !!

Alex: Oh yeah!

What about recording? You have brand new album out and in 2014 your released a single (''Wayfaring Stranger / The Oath''). Both of the releases are on Who Can You Trust Records?. Would you like to tell us what was the recording process like and maybe some words about songs, that appear on your new album?

Alex: Recording Evoke was crazy. We just had 3 days for the instrumental part and I think 2 days for vocals. We didn’t rush through the songs but it was sometimes pretty hectic because we had to get 3 songs each day done. Our budget wasn’t big enough to spend an entire week in the studio so we did it like that and I think we all liked it. The 7" was recorded in Linz/Austria at KAPU which is a club that has a studio in the upper floor. That was chill. We stayed there three days and recorded three songs. We also slept at KAPU and partied in Linz every night. Some rad stories happened there.

Arik: Recording Evoke was more or less professional compared to the recording session for the 7', haha that was crazy. And all of our shit was recorded live of course. That's the only way we can do it.

What influenced you to make this album?

Alex: To me it was the previous 7". I really wanted to do an album because I haven’t done a long player with any of my bands yet. It was on my to do list for such a long time. I think our main influence was just to get these songs out there. 

Arik: It was just the next step ya know. 

What about the cover artwork?

Arik: Yeah, that was done by Adam Burke who also did the cover for our 7". I think we didn't really knew what we wanted to have on the cover so I just told Adam to do something far out creepy with trees and stuff and I have to say Adam never disappoints. He came up with something thats totally rad that fits the music.

Are there any major plans or goals that Pastor is looking to accomplish in 2015/2016?

Alex: We are doing a three week long tour with our buddy's in Black Wizard from Canada through Europe. We are really looking forward to this tour and had to manage a lot of personal stuff for doing this but I think it will be strictly amazing! 

Do you all spend a lot of time out on the road touring?

Alex: Recently we played a lot of shows in Germany and we just got there for one show. Our last show was in Aschaffenburg/Germany which was planned a 7h drive from Vienna but turned into a 11h nightmare of traffic jams and waiting at the German autobahn. We don’t have a van so we have to go to these shows in my small Toyota in order to keep the expenses low. We always ask ourselves if we have some mental problems while driving but I think that’s just the way it is when you’re playing in a band. No matter how crazy you go inside the car as soon as you can play a show it was all worth it, I guess! And it is always rad to see weird shit in other countries.

Arik: Haha I think there is nothing more to add. We are kinda broke all the time so there is no money for a van or comfort but that's just rock n roll. 

Are there any new bands, that you would like to recommend?

Alex: Depends on what you call new but I am still listening a lot to the new Lecherous Gaze album Zeta Reticuli Blues. That band is just killer! We just played with Death Alley and these guys are just super nice and their new album Black Magick Boogieland is something I can highly recommend! Also we are all super into a band called Joy from San Diego. Seriously there are too many good bands out there these days to mention. 

Arik: DZJENGHIS KHAN! All said. But seriously I dig loads of stuff from the late 60s and 70s era.
And just to mention a few bands that I dig: Hot Lunch, Banquet, Wild Eyes, Harsh Toke, Earthless, Ovvl, and so on... 

What's your opinion about vinyl comeback? How do you listen to music? 

Alex: It is great! I mean I am 25 so I didn’t really grew up listening to records back then but I can still remember the first time I bought a 7". It was magic! I also listen to a lot of CDs in my car but whenever I am at home I go through the vinyl. I think a lot of people are making a big deal out of vinyl and their collection and as long as they are not acting like pretentious a-holes I think that’s really cool! Vinyl has so many positive aspects but I think it doesn’t really matter on what format you are listening to a band as long as you support them. 

Arik: I dig vinyl & tapes a lot and for me it's something special. And of course I use the internet to check out new bands, who doesn't? I don't have a CD player and I  honestly don't give a thing about comebacks or trends. Each to their own! As long as you support the bands you dig.

Alex: Go buy mini discs man!

Well, thanks guys for taking your time. Would you like to send a message to It's Psychedelic Baby readers?

Alex: Thanks for spreading the word about underground and independent bands. We are highly thankful for that! Go check out smaller bands in smaller clubs, it all started there!

Arik: Big thanks to Clem! Thanks to Psychedelic baby! Stay rad! Support rock n roll underground! Be yourself!

Interview made by Klemen Breznikar/2015
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