This is the first ever full band interview with death metal’s Father Befouled. Traditionally Father Befouled interviews feature their main man Justin Stubbs. This interview features the band behind Justin’s project in a bit of an extensive, detailed interview. The Befouled guys speak about their new album Revulsion of Seraphic Grace and their recent appearance at Martyrdoom in NYC. Also mentioned is the anti-fucking-religion in their lyrics and their viewpoints on the topic. The band is scattered all over the place so they speak about what it is like to continue and prepare to perform without actually getting to practice. Telling why they chose this path of old school death metal and speaking on why they believe this style of old school death metal has stayed so far underground. Telling why they chose this path of old school death metal. Of course Father Befouled lets us know that they do in fact have other influences besides Incantation. The interview goes into great detail and the guys in Father Befouled have a lot of insightful and intelligent things to say.
Father Befouled is:
Justin – guitar/vocals
Derrik – guitar
Jake – bass
Brian – live bass at Martyrdoom
Wayne – drums
ME: I find your new album ‘Revulsion of Seraphic Grace’ to be an improvement from your previous full-length ‘Destitution of Covenant’. The new album sounds tighter, going beyond the limitations set by what is expected from “Incantation worship.” Would you agree?
JUSTIN: The drumming made this one 666 times better. Wayne had much more free range to play the way he is accustomed to rather than sticking strictly to the songs I wrote. I think we’ve really moved forward and developed our own style. That, while pretty firmly rooted in Incantation’s sound, is a sound of our own…The last record was really rushed – it was the four of us banging it out in four days at Wayne’s house in a 110 degree room. I also had to teach the other three people the album in that time because I write everything and we all live apart. This record is way less disjointed. This one I took a lot more time on my own once the drums were done. Tweaking the guitars, and rewriting lots of parts to fit the drumming better. There were lots of parts on the last one (album) where parts are crammed together – there was lots of post-production editing.
DERRIK: I would agree. But even on earlier stuff there was a lot more going on besides Incantation. I think the Incantation worship just stuck out in people’s minds.
JAKE: As an objective observer to the results of this record, I can say that I think the sum total is a bit more than the others. Not to say anything adverse with any other material at all, this one is just more dynamic in it’s scope. I like the dichotomy/flow of these compositions more. Has an evil as fuck swag too.
WAYNE: I think this album might have a few more slower parts and a bit more double bass than before too. It just happened to turn out that way.
JUSTIN: This is the only time anyone besides me has answered for Father Befouled, so I’d love for it to be super comprehensive.
ME: ‘Revulsion of Seraphic Grace’ is a bit smoother and less technical than your previous releases. Was this intentional, or was it just the way things tied together when you began to lay?
JUSTIN: I would not say it’s less technical – I try to make it as challenging to me as a player as I can, but making it flow much more smoothly as a cohesive listen was paramount. The last album was disjointed and very constructed in places, that I, being my own worst critic can pick out. I wanted this one to bleed from song to song and follow itself. The lyrics also tell somewhat of a narrative, so following the entire thing as once piece was sort of planned. There were technical parts on the last album that were really too much – I’ve never played a single note of a few of those songs since the day we recorded them. There were technical parts on the last album that were really too much – I’ve never played a single note of a few of those songs since the say we recorded them.
BRIAN: I didn’t write a note for either of the albums, so I can’t really say anything.
DERRIK: I think the song arrangements are maybe not more technical but a bit more cohesive, they’re altogether more colorful than the last album.
WAYNE: I think the last album SOUNDS more technical because it’s more all over the place. But the actual riffs/playing isn’t much different. The drums are much more simple this time around.
JUSTIN: Certainly…with Profano…and the first album, I had zero concept of how to write in a conventional time signature. So everything was very chaotic and nonsensical. Then with out first drummer; he played like we were Conqueror or something. So it was just barbaric as hell.
JAKE: I think the presentation on this one accentuated the qualities of this kind of metal pretty effectively.
ME:You guys just played Martyrdoom in June, some of you in more than one band. How did you feel about the outcome of the fest? Bringing together some of the more respected bands in the underground death, death/black scene today from both the US and Europe? Have you ever been there?
JAKE: I thought it was a total success, had a blast. Probably the more comfy/painless/fun times I’ve had playing a fest. NY was sick. The sound was a lot better this time around. As far as venues go, it’s a pretty fair shake.
JUSTIN: Martyrdoom was great. We’ve had limited stage time since our inception, and we have to pick and choose when and where we play. But Martyrdoom came out perfect. The organizers came through with every promise, and every band KILLED. It was a great experience all the way around.
DERRIK: I had a great time. Vinny held shit down like a pro. Every band was fucking awesome.
BRIAN: I had a blast playing Martyrdoom. It was put on by Vinny Bochicchio and Signature Riff, which I already knew personally, and knew to be total professionals before the show took place. I attended a show at that venue once: The show Jake played last year.
JUSTIN: We played NJ in 2008, and have been to NYC, but never played there. My only complaint was the sound guy for our stage was a complete fuck up.
BRIAN: Martyrdoom was the biggest crowd I had played in front of before, and they were very into all the bands that played. There were two stages, and you could barely move around in either room. They were both PACKED!
WAYNE: I thought it went over really well for a first one. According to Vinny, there will be another one next year, and hopefully it can grow and become a yearly thing. I think if he can find more international bands that people really want to see, it will continue to be a success.
ME:Do you see yourselves playing a potential Martyrdoom 2013?
JAKE: If it’s in the cards, I’m into playing anything that is doable and legitimate..It’s better to play 2 or 3 real good things per year than a bunch of shows all the time.
JUSTIN: In some capacity, yes…if it works out. EXACTLY.
JUSTIN: I think we did pretty good. Also – let me add this in – Jake is our bass player, has been for four years. He could not play this gig, so we got Brian in..so we have two bassists in the family. And Jake got to see us for the first time as an observer.
DERRIK: Yeah, if it comes to pass, I’m game. Because of the distance between us the stars have to really align.
BRIAN: I’d love to play Martyrdoom 2013. If the opportunity doesn’t come up, I’ll still attend if I’m able to. I’m not exactly sure what the current situation of the band is, due to the logistics of getting the band up there, and with Jake playing the same show with his own band. I was asked to fill in for him in Father Befouled for the show. I have attended all Father Befouled shows except for one. I was at their first show in 2008, and have followed them ever since. I suppose if Jake isn’t able to play any future shows, I’ll be the first alternative, which I’m totally happy with.
WAYNE: I’m not sure if he plans on having any repeat bands, but it is unlikely. However, Vinny already asked me to have two of my other bands play, and most likely I would be playing live drums for Justin’s solo project, so you will see me there playing three times I believe!
ME: Who were some of your favorite bands to watch at Martyrdoom? There was a great variety, and some bands that us Americans do not often get to see, so it was pretty exciting.
JAKE: I thought Anu was sick as fuck. Sanguis Imperem killed. They always fucking deliver. Father Befouled (remember Brian played bass that night), Perdition Temple…it was great to see Gene.
BRIAN: It was great to MEET Gene.
JUSTIN: For me, Dead Congregation, Sanguis Imperem, Kommandant, Prosanctus Inferi, Anu. Only band I completely missed was Grave Miasma. Oh – Cruciamentum crushed.
DERRIK: Prosanctus, Anu, Dead Congregation, and Kommandant.
BRIAN: Prosanctus Inferi, Anu, Kommandant, Dead Congregation, and being the tremendous Angelcorpse fan I am, I loved the crap out of Perdition Temple. It was my second time seeing Cruciamentum, and holy crap, they blew me away once again.
DERRIK: Yeah, FUCKING PERDITION TEMPLE, especially Gene!
JAKE: Yeah, Cruciamentum/Grave Miasma was fucking great. Bill Taylor is a beast.
JUSTIN: It was hard talking to Gene in Atlanta in April. He was talking about how hard finding a second guitarist was, and I mentioned Bill, to which he said, “Nah, he’s comfortable with Immolation…” Well – guess he took my advice!
DERRIK: Jake, are you playing with Void Meditation Cult in Tampa soon?
JUSTIN: That already happened
JAKE: No, that was last week. I couldn’t make it to that gig.
WAYNE: Prosanctus Inferi was my favorite. I finally got to see them with their new drummer and it made a world of difference. Evoken sounded amazing, even though the room was so packed I couldn’t get in to see most of it. Cruciamentum and Grave Miasma sounded great even though I didn’t get to fully watch either because we were getting set up to play with Encoffination and Father Befouled. Dead Congregation sounded awesome too. Much better live than on CD if you ask me.
ME: Justin’s lyrics are pretty fucking anti-religious. Aside from it being a common theme in metal, do you have anything personal against religion? What were your religious upbringings like? Ya know, as children. Don’t tell me that mom and dad blasted Slayer into the crib!
BRIAN: I was forced to attend Catholic church for about ten years. I was pretty indifferent about it. My biggest gripe was waking up early on a weekend. It was right about the time my folks stopped making me go that I started to open my eyes and turn away from it. I feel like the basics of religion are good: Don’t steal, don’t kill, don’t like, do good deeds, etc. Pretty much anything beyond that, I detest. Reckon I was about 16 when I wasn’t forced to attend anymore. I know religion is a very personal thing, so I don’t really get into debates with people about it, unless they throw it in my face, or something like that…but even then, I don’t waste my time stressing about things like that. Religion is like a band I don’t like. Instead of talking about how much it sucks and I hate it, I choose simply to ignore it.
JUSTIN: I’m going to turn that around and say my anti-religion feelings are personal – not that I don’t want to talk about them, because I will, but that I pick and choose very wisely where to voice my opinion. I was raised southern Baptist, which a is pretty thick-headed, close-minded form of Christianity. I am a pretty militant Atheist, but I see so much hypocrisy and ignorance in the world, perpetuated and instigated by religion. And what it all boils down to is this extremely thin, archaic, lost-in-translation manifestation of ideals that is so full of holes. There is no possible way to find truth in it. People put so much faith (I despise that word and idea) in this book, that is so fabricated, so horribly skewed to each person’s interpretation, that’s a farcical to find truth in it.
DERRIK: I do! That shit is fucking ridiculous! We are all subject to so much misery and bullshit all because of something no one can prove exists…because it fucking doesn’t. I’ll never understand it, I love playing in a death metal band that promotes the denouncement of false truth.
JUSTIN: That’s where the real hatred of religion comes from – the ignorance of the world we live in. Basing our misfortune and failures on the guidance of a divine puppeteer. It’s laughable. I save my thoughts on religion for one place – Father Befouled. I can sprout my hatred for others who feel the same. I’m not on a soapbox trying to bend others to my will. I was, and I’m still surrounded by it everyday. I just bow my head and ignore it. I’m very close with my grandmother, who is VERY religious, and she does not understand why I feel the way I do…
WAYNE: The whole concept of a magical man in the sky that created EVERYTHING is so fucking absurd it makes me laugh. How people believe in that just blows my mind. I’ve never personally met a religious nut that I would consider a rational human being. I didn’t have any religious upbringing at all. I made my own decisions on what I did and didn’t believe. I’m a little too old for my parents to have been blasting Slayer. I consider that a good thing, because I hate Slayer anyway! They were more the classic rock type people. The reformed hippies of sorts.
ME: You have released three LPs, two Eps, and three splits, if I’m not mistaken. What keeps you going? Is there a constant writing process or do you ever need to take a break? Does taking a break just mess everything up? Does Justin do all of the writing not just lyrically but instrumentally as well?
BRIAN: I used to live a few hours from Justin, and visited several times. Each time I’d visit, he’d have so many new musical things to show me, being Father Befouled, or any other of the handful of bands he’s in…or, simply just songs that he recorded with all the instruments for, and never did anything with. I have no idea where he finds the time, or even more-so, the inspiration to do so much musically. It takes me a couple of months or more to write a song. He’s a machine.
JUSTIN: I’m never constantly writing, but I’m constantly thinking and planning. A majority of the writing is done once a release is planned, but even that could take months. A lot of our material is in the works for a long time before it ever sees release, or is announced. But I think the plan now is to take a break for a bit, let the new record really sink in, and we’ll decide what to do next early next year.
And yes, I tend to write everything, but that’s really because we all live separately and do not rehearse. I am always up for input from them though. Wayne contributes a good bit with the drumming. This new one was almost completely driven by drums.
JAKE: My role in Father Befouled has always been supportive. I don’t want to interfere with the writing process or any other creative aspect. These sorts of things usually work best with once mind with the idea.
DERRIK: It is mostly Justin’s vision, but I think we all give the band a bit of our own personality. I’ve been in the band since a few months before our first show, and in that time I’ve seen what was a simple idea grow into what it is now. A lot of that has come through the interaction with other people. For example, our sound with Antichristus was a little different from what we sound like now, but for where we were at in that time I feel it was perfect.
WAYNE: I think we just kind of write/record when the time is right. If we get offered to do a cool split or something, Justin will email me asking for drum tracks. After 9-10 months, he does the same for the full length. It takes him a little longer to put songs together than some other people, so I think when he is feeling motivated, he just works on it until it’s done. Justin does almost all of it, and I’m pretty sure we all consider it his band basically. Derrik also contributes some riffs and ideas I believe. Jake and myself are just kind of along for the ride and we do our parts when the time comes. We both have other bands we consider our “main” projects, but FB is still a priority for all of us.
ME: So there is no current writing in the works for any upcoming releases it sounds like, even splits?
JUSTIN: Nope. The planned split with Macabra is going to feature an unreleased song we recorded in 2008. Other than that, there is nothing. I really want to do a release that has the songs from the split with Helcaraxe remixed and remastered, plus live stuff, 7” split stuff, and we have a couple of unreleased songs too. As for past that, I want to do something simple, like a split or a covers 7” before we even think about another record.
JUSTIN: Let me just add that without Jake and Derrik, we’d never be who we are. Jake always hashed amazing input, especially when it comes to working the songs out live. Derrik plays ALL the solos.
ME: What have you been listening to lately as far as metal, or even “non-metal?”
BRIAN: As always, I’ve been listening to a lot of Texas metal. Imprecation, Bahimiron..the new Thornspawn material is great. Morbus 666. Also, a lot of old, obscure Texas demos from Hellpreacher, Necrovore, Valkyrie, Wyzard Death Tripper, Militia, Morbid Scream, etc. I’m from Texas and worship the metal it has spawned..most of it, anyways. For non-Texas stuff, I’ve been listening to Revenge, Lust, and the latest Black Witchery album, Bestial Warlust, all kinds of stuff. I basically put the MP3 player on shuffle everyday, for the 30 minute drive to work. So I listen to dozens and dozens of bands at any given time.
JUSTIN: Oh fuck, here goes. Lately:
Agalloch – everything + Live
Goreaphlia – Ascended to Chaos
Entombed – Left Hand Path/Clandestine
Epitaph – Seeming Salvation
Dismember – Like an Ever Flowing Stream
Hank III – EVERYTHING
M83 – Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming
Copremesis – Muay Thai Ladyboys
Malignancy – Inhuman Grotesqueries
Guttural Secrete – Reek of Pubescent Despoilment
Engorgement – Excruciating Intestinal Lacerations
DERRIK: Perdition Temple, Necrovore, Loss, Black Witchery, None so Vile, Dead Congregation, Church of Misery, Mushroom Star, Monstrosity, Mayhem, Windir, Agalloch, and my go to Absu and Dissection. Straight to hell! Yeah, I could go on forever. Old Psycroptic and Blood Revolt and my other band Abyssion.
WAYNE: My stack of CD’s is telling me:
Moondark – The Shadowpath
Death – Individual Thought Patterns
Upsidedown Cross – Evilution
Bal Sagoth – A Black Moon Broods Over Lemuria
Kate Bush – Hounds of Love
Old Crow Medicine Show – OCMS
Mythic – Anthology
The Last Emperor – The Legend of Bigfoot
Blacklace – Get It While It’s Hot
Hypocrisy – Abducted (Still sucks! Only the first two are real)
Motorhead – Orgasmatron
JAKE: Metropolis Soundtrack, Wicker Man Soundtrack, NON, Spear of Longinus, SPK, Nitberg, Organ, King Diamond
JUSTIN: “Spear of Longinus and Nitberg” = kicked off Relapse haha GUILTY.
BRIAN: I’m not ashamed to say I’m a big Kiss fan, and have been recently revisiting all of their original-lineup material as of late.
JUSTIN: KISS = MOST OVERRATED BAND OF ALL TIME
JAKE: I never sat down and listened to Kiss really
DERRIK: FUCK A DICK! That Shit RULES!
BRIAN: They got me into rock ‘n roll when I was 9, so I have a soft spot for themselves
JUSTIN: Kiss has some GREAT songs, but it’s all overrated as fuck haha
DERRIK: I’ll give you overrated, and they also have some complete bullshit.
BRIAN: I’m a big fan, but I’ll never own the Kiss Kasket. I don’t even own a Kiss shirt. I do agree that they’re overrated though.
DERRIK: Why listen to Kiss when you’ve got HIGH SPIRITS?
TO BE CONTINUED!!!