Maddening Rituals From The Grave With Carnation (English and Japanese)

Translations by Makiko Suda

Belgium's young Death Metal monsters Carnation came through Japan for a short tour recently that started at Asakusa Death 2016 and ended at Grind Fest 2016. These guys absolutely crushed it and I'm glad I got to see them twice before they left. They are in the process of putting together their first full length and are hoping to come back to Japan next year upon its release. But don't take my word for it, get it straight from their vocalist Simon who was kind enough to give us a post-tour interview below.

Kaala: What a tour! Carnation managed to do four shows in six days, hitting two of the year’s best events at Asakusa Deathfest and Grind Fest. That must have been a crazy week! How was the tour for you guys?


Simon: A crazy week might be an understatement, the tour was awesome! From the moment we arrived until we left, it all felt like a surreal experience. This was the first time we visited Tokyo for all five of us and we made many great memories here on this trip. Great shows, cool people and an awesome city!


Did any of the venues or events stand out to you guys the most? Which show was the best for you guys?


Honestly, all the shows are really memorable and unique. But I think the show at Asakusa Deathfest stands out the most for us. This was the first show of the tour and we didn’t really know what to expect yet at that moment. Five minutes before the show, we realized what was going down and how many people were waiting to check us out. It definitely fueled our adrenaline even more! I try to make our live shows as energetic as possible and that extra adrenaline just made me feel like… we’re taking no prisoners tonight.


You guys played out with some of the best bands the Japanese scene has to offer. Did you guys have any favorites before the tour started and did you discover any new favorites?


When they first announced the line-up for the festival, we saw that Coffins also would be playing. They played some pretty big shows in Europe but we never managed to see them live so it was really cool we could play with them this time and check them out! We also enjoyed the shows from F.I.D. and Anatomia. We had to leave early at Grind Fest to catch our flight so we sadly couldn’t see Butcher ABC… I guess that’s for our next trip to Japan!

最初のラインナップが発表されたとき、Coffinsの名前を見つけたんだ。彼らはヨーロッパの大きなフェスで何回もライブしてたのは知ってたけど、ちゃんと観れたことがなかったから対バンできるしライブも観れるのは最高だと思ったよ。ライブではF.I.DとAnatomiaのライブが楽しかったな。グラインドフェストは帰りの飛行機のために早く帰らなきゃいけなかったからButcher ABCを見れなかったけど、次の日本ツアーでは絶対にみるよ!

Carnation formed in 2013 and in a few short years has become a Death Metal powerhouse. Was this your first time playing outside of Europe? If not, where else have you guys played?


Yes, this was our first time outside of Europe. Over the past few years we played some cool festivals in Europe but considering we’ve only released one EP up until now, we still have a long way to go. We’re currently working on a lot of new plans for 2017 and I would say the chances are realistic that we will be leaving Europe once again in the upcoming year.


What are your overall impressions of Japan and the scene here? Was there anything that was different or the same as your expectations?


During the shows, we noticed that the crowd really got into our music. They were active and reacting to our energy. What kind of surprised us was how extremely respectful and kind they were to us after the shows. We tried to talk to as many people as possible, and everyone was very friendly, some of them maybe even a little shy. We really met some great people there and are thankful for the warm welcome.


I heard that Carnation will be heading into the studio soon to record your first full length. Is there a timeline right now so fans can mark their calendars for the release?


We’ve finished working on eleven tracks that are ready to be recorded. We plan to start working in the recording studio in January and finish the album by the end of February. We really like to take our time to make sure the result is exactly what we want it to be. The album will definitely be out in 2017, can’t say more than that now.


Are there any particular influences going into the studio for the next album?


Before we recorded our debut EP Cemetery of the Insane in 2015, we had a basic idea of how we wanted it to sound. We like the Swedish death metal guitar sound and we tried to combine it with American style death metal drumming. We had to try out a lot of different things in the studio but the result came close to what we wanted it to be. For our full length album, we hope to experiment with our sound a little more and try out different things we didn’t try yet so that we can improve what we had before and make it more unique. During songwriting we added a lot of different ingredients to the tracks to make it very versatile and interesting. From extremely fast paced aggressive tracks to very slow and hopeless doom riffs.


What’s next for Carnation? And can we expect another tour in Japan in the future?


Next year should be a busy year for us. We’ve got a long recording session coming up and a lot of other stuff that needs to be prepared for the new album. Bookings are coming in and we’re happy to have received some very interesting offers. As for Japan, we definitely want to return there in the future for another tour! We’ll work hard on the new album so we can make it happen!


Any last words?


Arigatou to everyone who supported us in Japan! We’ll be back with more blistering death metal madness…


Carnation's Cemetary of the Insane can be purchased on Final Gate Records' Bandcamp.