Due in no small part to Behemoth, Poland might not be the first place that crosses the mind when it comes to psychedelic doom and stoner metal. But, Spaceslug are out to change that on third full length Eye the Tide which is due out later this week on BSFD Records. Over the course of the first three tracks, the album builds very slowly with the kind of atmospheric tranquility generally associated with a space odyssey but by the fourth track it rears its head with brushstrokes of black metal and heavily weighted doom metal. Eye the Tide is an interesting journey and one listen is nowhere near enough to take in all the nuances and surprises hidden in its six tracks. Just ahead of the album’s release we had the opportunity to ask guitarist/vocalist Bartosz Janik our set of Profile questions to get a better understanding of the band. Check out what he had to say and be sure to pick up a copy from the links contained within.
What, or who, got you into metal and how old were you? How did your family and friends feel about it?
My cousin. I was around 7 or 8 when he brought me some old Metallica cassettes and started showing more and more rock and metal bands to me. My Mom loves heavy music and is also fan of our band. Most of my friends listen to the same bands I love so it’s always great to meet with them and share the same musical passions.
How did each band member first get into playing music?
I asked Kamil (drums/vocals) if he wanted to do some space jams… not long after, the project was fulfilled by Jan (bass/vocals) and transformed into a normal working band. Simple, but that was the beginning.
It seems that now everyone has a passion for some cause and that those people are very open about displaying their passions. This is probably a very, very good (and progressive) thing socially. What are some of the most important issues (social/political/humorous/etc.) for you and how do you insert those issues into your music?
Mainly the dark side of the soul. It’s the key for me to write music and lyrics. I don’t involve any political things in Spaceslug or anything like that. All the themes in my music and lyrics are about cleansing the soul from all its burdens. And maybe the music is the key to the soul if we want start philosophic talk. It’s not that simple to be open about the topics in lyrics etc. because the music speaks it the best. Music itself can really be a good way to cleanse all the demons and help face all the problems you have. I prefer to write music about my problems in lieu of speaking about them with others.
What’s your goal? You guys thinking world domination? Saving a continent, or maybe invading one? Any interest in starting a cult? Tell us what you’re aiming for with this band.
My goal is to accomplish all my goals – yeah, that’s simple! I basically want to meet all of my musical heroes and someday stand with them on one stage. Traveling the world with my music and sharing it with people that will find the same things in it that I do. To help them feel better, in some cases, with my art. And yes, world domination. Maybe even start a Slug Cult one day and be the Manson of it.
For live performing goals: Roadburn, DesertFests and Psycho Las Vegas if we’re speaking concert-wise. Also to play big fests like Wacken for example. My personal dream is a full tour with Neurosis in the USA. As far as magazines – to have an interview and review in Rolling Stone.
When you’re not obsessing over your own material, what are some of your favorite albums to listen to currently? (Feel free to include non-metal)
Hank Williams III – Lovesick, Broke and Driftin
Shawn James – Shadows
Neurosis – Times of Grace (and entire discography)
Mgla – again, full discography
Wiegedood – De Doden Hebben Het Goed
YOB – The Great Cessation
If These Trees Could Talk – The Bones of a Dying World
and at least 101 albums more…
Day jobs or hobbies you want to share?
I’m a big fan of video games and DC Comics. My day job is a music store manager. Also in free time I draw, or try to at least. Unfortunately, I don’t have the time I want or need for all my hobbies.
What do you see as some of the great things happening in metal right now? What are some of the worst?
People are really dedicated to this genre and it’s still evolving. A lot of music crossing paths in very good ways, one genre inspires others, etc. Getting payed for live shows and touring on the big tours is really hard these days. Especially for those who want to dedicate their lives to it and earn money from doing it for a living. It’s hard to start doing this thing as all band members must choose their priorities in life and it’s always a hard thing for every member involved. This particular path must be taken by everyone in the band and generally speaking, this is the moment when most bands fail.
What advice do you have for aspiring music critics and outlets out there? How can we all better serve the genre in the eyes of a hard-working musician?
Hmm. I think they should try to talk with bands, personally, and make friends inside the bands and vice versa. It’s the best way to make this industry better. Making friends and being kind to others.
What is the 12-month outlook for you or your band? Any specific events on the horizon that the masses should be aware of?
The release of our new album EYE THE TIDE. And dates for some great shows and festivals.
Summarize your band in exactly one word. (Disclosure: If you include additional words, we will select our favorite for the final publication.)
Many thanks to Bartosz and Spaceslug for their time!