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THE SIN COMMITTEE (WILLEM ELBERS)

HI WILLEM, FIRST OF ALL HOW ARE YOU AND WHICH WERE YOUR PERSONAL HIGHLIGHTS 2009 UNTIL NOW? Hi Phil, I am doing great and the band is doing fine as well. This far this year has been quite exciting for us. Recording a new album, launching a new website, shooting a music video and doing a lot of promotional work. YOU JUST RELEASED YOUR EP “CONFESS”, WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE REACTIONS SO FAR? It is awesome man! We are getting very enthusiastic responses. Besides getting a positive response here in the Netherlands we have also received positive feedback from different parts of the globe as well. Yesterday, for example, I received an e-mail from a guy in Chile telling me he really digs Confess. Really cool stuff. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE CD IN YOUR OWN WORDS? Energetic, melodic yet brutal, atmospheric and somehow progressive as it does not follow any metal genre in particular. AND HOW LONG DID IT TAKE TO RECORD THE SONGS? In total we were in the studio for 9 days, of which we used 3 days for mixing and mastering. This seems like a lot, but I can tell you it is not. Well-known bands usually take about 3 months or more for their recordings. Already the 9 days were quite expensive as we don’t have a label to cover the expenses. IS THE SONGWRITING PROCESS A WHOLE BAND THING OR DOES SOMEBODY WRITE THE SONGS AND THEN ANOTHER ONE THE LYRICS OR DO YOU SIT ALL TOGETHER AND WORK ON THE SONGS, SO THAT EVERYBODY IS INVOLVED? How we write our songs has changed over the years. In the past two years we found a way that seems to work for us. It usually goes as follows. First our guitar-player Raymon writes a concept song and takes it to the rehearsal space. Then we start jamming and the song will evolve. Everybody writes his own parts (drums, bass, vocals) and everybody shares his ideas about the other instruments and the song-structure. We never have big ego fights or something. We simply have lots of fun when writing new stuff. WHAT IS THE INSPIRATION FOR YOUR LYRICS? We definitely try to put some meaning into the lyrics, although we don’t want to be a band primarily renowned for its lyrics or ‘message’ in the music. To bring some light on the lyrics; they primarily refer to the negative impact of modern authorities, whether religion, politics, or otherwise, on our true freedom and the inability or indifference of us humans to withdraw ourselves from such negative impact. You could argue that anybody who blindly follows such authorities is guilty in one way or another. As such, there is much to “Confess”. HOW ABOUT A EUROPEAN TOUR? ARE THERE ANY PLANS? Yes, we definitely have plans. Somewhere in 2010 we want to do at least one tour in Europe. Big chance we’ll also go to Germany because of the big metal scene you have. This year we want to get to know some good German bands with the potential aim of playing with them and perhaps do a tour. WHAT WAS THE GREATEST GIG YOU’VE EVER PLAYED? This will probably be the gig we have next week (19th of July). We’ll play in a big festival at our hometown and share the stage with French metal band Gojira. Hell yeah!! DO YOU KNOW ANY GERMAN BANDS AND HOW DO YOU LIKE THEM? Sure, some of the German bands we like include The Ocean, Kreator, Necrophagist… some pretty extreme stuff. Oh and what about Tokio Hotel… (hahaha) WHAT ARE YOUR PERSONAL HEROES? As the bass play Justin Chancelor of Tool is definitely one of my heroes. He really has a signature sound which I personally adore. But if you would ask the other guys they would mention different heroes. Raymon (guitar ed.) and Joris (vocals ed.) really like Devin Townsend for example. WAS IT ALWAYS CLEAR THAT YOU WILL BE MUSICIANS OR HOW DID YOU COME OUT PLAYING MUSIC? With me it was a friend who played bass guitar. I asked whether I wanted to try as well and I remember holding the bass upside down the first time I tried. Once I learned to play a little bit I got hooked. DID THE BAND BECOME A FAMILY OR AT LEAST FRIENDS OR ARE THEY JUST SOME KIND OF BUSINESS PARTNERS? We make music simply because we like it, you know, that is what drives us. Don’t forget that in metal, there is hardly any money to make. Also the large majority of the metal bands that have a record label cannot make a living out of their music. This basically rules out the idea of working as business partners. How can you have fun if you don’t like each other? So definitely we are friends and we see each other also a lot when we are not making music. ARE THERE ALREADY PLAYNS FOR A FULL LENGTH RECORD OR DO YOU TAKE YOUR TIME TO PROMOTE YOUR EP AND WRITE AN ALBUM WHEN IT IS TIME? If it is up to us our next album will be a full length album and probably we’ll start recording at the end of 2010 or the beginning of 2011. But at this point, there are no tangible plans yet. Currently we put all our efforts in promoting The Sin Committee, finding a label, building up our fanbase and playing lots of gigs. YOU SHOT A VIDEO FOR “CONFESS”. WHAT CAN WE EXPECT OF THAT? It will be a mix of live images and us playing at an abandoned factory site. I don’t want to tell too much as you have to see it for yourselves, but it will be a very energetic video reflecting the vibe we try to build on stage during live gigs. I think it will be released in the beginning of August. Be sure to check our website regularly! AND HOW WAS THE VIDEO SHOT? A difficult but extremely cool process! It was one of those rainy days you know. With five minutes rain, then dry for 10 minutes, then another small shower for 15 minutes. And we could not risk getting our gear wet so you can imagine… During the recordings we had to bring our gear into shelter to protect it from the rain and bring out again at least four times. NOW THAT THE EP IS RELEASED DO YOU GET CALLS EVERYDAY BECAUSE LABELS WANT YOU TO SIGN A CONTRACT OR ARE YOU STILL SEARCHING? I wish it was like that. No, it is definitely not easy getting a label these days. There is less money to be made in music meaning that it is quite difficult for bands to get signed. But what we plan to do is approaching labels later this year when “Confess” has received more media attention. WHAT WAS THE FIRST EVER GIG YOU’VE GONE TO WHEN YOU WERE YOUNG? Phew, probably it was some punkrock band in my hometown, I honestly cannot recall. AND FIRST GIG ON STAGE? I was 15 and I played in at the high school band contest. We won by the way! DO YOUR PARENTS SUPPORT YOU OR DO THEY SAY “OH MY GOD! WHY DOES MY SON PLAY SUCH BADASS MUSIC?” My parents are quite tolerant and even told me they like our music, but they also didn’t understand the need for the grunting and screaming… Try explaining that to your parents. Why is grunting cool? Well, because it simply is!! In contrast, Raymon’s parents completely dig our music and come to our gigs. WITH WICH ARTIST WOULD YOU LIKE TO PLAY A SHOW OR A WHOLE TOUR AS WELL? It would be nice to tour with Mastodon and Opeth… (laugh)… but realistically speaking we simply like to play with cool people who play cool music. And there are so many bands out there that make great music! For us the most important thing is that we have a great time. As I mentioned, we are currently looking for other German bands to play with so if somebody knows a good match, feel free to contact us. WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE NEAR FUTURE? Basically we would like to record a full-length recording, get signed by a label, do more gigs and a European tour. LET’S COME TO AN END, SO MY LAST QUESTION, IS THERE SOMETHING YOU WOULD LIKE TO SAY TO YOUR GERMAN FANS? It is a cliché to say it, but Germany is a cool place to be. The people are friendly and they seem to appreciate live music more than the Dutch. As you can imagine, we are really looking forward to doing that tour in Germany. Hopefully till soon! THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME! HOPE TO HEAR MORE OF YOUR ART SOON.

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