-- Emperors of Decay get shredded --

Stijn Daneels
As was the case with Eternal Breath this is another interview that has been twelve months in the making! My first encounter with the Emperors of Decay was in fall 2015 when Alain, the band's bass player, sent me over Emperors' debut EP Going Apeshit for me to review! And finally, at Devils Rock For An Angel (October 1, 2016) I finally met the band in person and it was a great meet-and-greet!

What did we talk about? The band's debut EP Going Apeshit gets some well-deserved attention in addition to the Emperors of Decay's future projects, the band being featured on the Studio Brussel show Goe Vor In Den Otto and the band members seemingly infinite supply of youthful hormones!

BMS: I'm damn glad to finally meet you guys personally, you were one of the first bands to ever contact me for a review.
Alain: The pleasure was all mine!
BMS: Aside from that, congratulations on winning all these music competitions such as 2011's Alcatraz Metal Festival Band Clash, 2013's Red Bull Bedroom Jam and 2014's Rock Edegem.
Alain: Thanks! We worked very hard on our jamming skills to get those victories, but we decided to no longer participate in such contests.
BMS: Ah, you want to give other bands a chance to win, right?
Alain: Well, winning at those events has given us plenty of money and exposure and that gave us a huge headstart when we released our EP in fall 2015.
Kenneth: Plus we're already participated in pretty much every Belgian music contest in existence so it's time for something else to focus our energy on. Like getting a full length album out of the door!

BMS: Did you guys play in other bands before the Emperors of Decay?
Paco: I've been part of the Emperors of Decay for the past two years but I also play in other bands like the thrash metal band KomaH and I do drums in a few pop rock acts like Andy Sergeant. Obviously, playing in a metal band like the Emperors of Decay is a whole different beast than when I play more commercially friendly music but all things considered, it's not too hard for me to adapt to these various music styles. For some projects I can easily dive into the stuff while for others I need to do more rehearsing.
BMS: How about you, Kenneth and Alain, have you played in other bands before?
Kenneth: I was part of a band during my high school years. It was nothing special, and after that I joined the Emperors of Decay.

Alain: Same for me. I also was part of a couple weekend warrior bands in the past. I did remain musically inactive for a few years until one day in 2010 I decided to become a true, professional musician and therefore I formed the Emperors of Decay. A band in which Kenneth, Paco, Patrick and me play music that we grew up with and still love today! The Emperors of Decay is the only band I'm part of and I give it all my dedication!

Kenneth: That's right. We put our combined heart and soul into this band and I believe that's one of the reasons why people enjoy the Emperors of Decay. It's hard to become a successful music act if you don't stand 110% behind the music you write and play.
BMS: I completely agree. Alain, could you describe in your own words what the Emperors of Decay stand for?
Alain: The Emperors of Decay has a less-is-more philosophy. We aim for a straight on rock n' roll vibe that includes some original and technical nuances. Our music is easy to get into both for casual music lovers and people who are looking for something more refined than your average rock band.

Kenneth: And we as the Emperors of Decay love to party! You'll notice it on our Facebook and Instagram pages that we enjoy going out and having fun with everyone we meet. Our youthful hormones help us in keeping our rock n' roll attitude alive and kicking!

Picture by Karina Wijckhuyse.
BMS: Awesome! As I said at the start of this interview I had a lot of fun reviewing your debut EP Going Apeshit. How did other reviewers react to your release?
Alain: Back when I was sending Going Apeshit to the press I was very nervous to hear what they would think about it. After all, it was our band's first recorded release and after winning those music contests we talked about earlier we wanted to go for the next phase in our music career and that was to get an EP out of the gate!

Alain: Fortunately, I was relieved to see the positive feedback Going Apeshit got after its release. Our fans were very pleased to see that we managed to convert our live-on-stage energy into recorded format and the EP also helped in expanding our fanbase.
BMS: You're right about that. I discovered your band thanks to you sending me the EP! So thanks again!
Alain: No problemo! Another thing that helped us in the EP's production was that we've had enough resources at hand to finance and direct the EP all by ourselves. We didn't need to fuck around with a record label or struggle to find a good recording studio that fitted our budget. We had the chance to do things our own way and we're all the more satisfied with the end result!
BMS: So are you now working on a full album?
Alain: Yes, indeed! It will once again be an album that we will be producing by ourselves and we aim to make it a worthy successor to the Going Apeshit EP.

Kenneth: You can expect an album that will follow a similar style to the aforementioned EP but as always we'll still be bringing something new and surprising to the table. As long as it doesn't get in the way of the album remaining a thrilling bad-to-the-bone rock n' roll ride!

Picture taken by Karina Wijckhuyze.
BMS: Oh, I can't wait for the release! Something else, are there any locations where you would like to play? Since you're a band that likes to party hard, I'd say a place like Las Vegas would be ideal for you!
Alain: I don't care much where we play as long as we can get people to enjoy the good things of life with lots of energetic music, lots of drinks, lots of babes and lots of rock n' roll! But yeah, Las Vegas would be a fun location. We just have to make sure we don't waste too much money at the Vegas Strip! Ha, ha, ha!
BMS: What other activities do the Emperors of Decay have in life?
Alain: I provide courses in English and Dutch in the denominational education sector. It's a job I love doing.
Kenneth: I work at an IT department. One of my current projects is designing our band's official website.
Paco: I study pop rock at the Ghent Conservatory. Music is my main passion.
BMS: Alain, I read on your Facebook page that Emperors of Decay was featured in the Studio Brussel show Goe Vor In Den Otto. You were quite happy with that, right?
Alain: Yeah, at Rock Edegem this year I met the folks from the Goe Vor In Den Otto radio show and I presented them our EP for them to listen to. They said they'll be listening to it when driving back home from the festival and a couple of weeks later one of our EP's songs was featured on the show, right after Metallica's new single Hardwired! It was an honor!

BMS: Do you guys have anything else you wish to tell me before we wrap this up?
Alain: Thank you for spending your time with us. You need bands to interview and bands need people like you to get publicity!
Paco: Keep supporting the underground of Belgian rock and metal! And now I'm off to get some food and drinks!
BMS: Enjoy your meal and see you soon!

Picture of Alain and me taken by Kenneth.
Emperors Of Decay - Buzz Ride