I had this interview on my computer since ages and actually it was scheduled for the 10th issue, but with updated questions. Unfortunately the band never answered me back so the questions never featured in any Franang zine edition. I think it's time to published this meeting as according to me MORTUARY DRAPE are one hell of a dark Black Metal band, that has always come with original tunes and recordings. Read on answers from the vocalist Wildness Perversion (WP) and Arcane (A) the bassist.
Hail to thee !!! How’s life doing in MORTUARY DRAPE'scamp lately ?
(W.P) : I’d say that things are for the best, even if we had to report several times the recordings because of the usual line up problems… now, we’re busy with perfecting the new songs, since we will enter the studio this summer (2004). The new material can be compared to “Secret Sudaria” when it comes to the impact but it’s certainly more complex, both regarding the technical side and the structures of the songs. It will be a major kick in the ass of all those who thought what MORTUARY DRAPE were dead !
(A) : Musically speaking, the new album will certainly be the most extreme ever recorded by MORTUARY DRAPE ! There is a new vital force pulsing within the band and this has contributed to give the song a more fresh and spontaneous shape. It’s also a result of the fact that the band could call around them people who were all 100% into the message that we spread since 16 years !

MORTUARY DRAPE exists since more than 17 years, how do you look back on the first days and on your long background ? Are there some particular events that made MORTUARY DRAPE to what it’s now ? Or was it a “common” band evolution (I mean musicianship improving & co) ?
(W.P) : MORTUARY DRAPE has been amongst the first Italian bands to have this kind of message, with macabre choreography and face-painting. The nowadays situation is very different to what it was in 1986. You see, back then we needed courage to go on stage dressed & make-up like we were, and now it’s the opposite ! If a Black Metal band doesn’t come on stage with face-painting they are disregarded ! Everything’s become a fucking trend ! During our first years of activism we were regularly criticised by pseudo-journalists about the way we presented ourselves live. The same people are now licking our ass and praise us for having been pioneers !

Occultism holds a major place in MORTUARY DRAPE : the looking of the members, the setting of the stage, lyrics & general feeling of the music. Is it result of an attraction, a spiritual interest or would you say this is a way of life for each member ? Have you ever experienced magic for instance ? Furthermore, whereas MORTUARY DRAPE is an “occult” band, I wouldn’t describe it as “satanic” music, as one can do for Denial Of God or Necromantia for instance. Do you see yourself as satanists, and in which way ? Do you draw any (musical or personal) inspiration from the kind of satanism preached by the Church Of Satan ?
(W.P.) : Occultism and necromancy are the basis of the band’s concept and are for us subjects of studies and research. We have a real and sincere interest in these topics, and this has brought a very personal identity to the band. Many of our lyrics, for instance, have been developed on the basis of live experiences of esoteric practices.
(A) : Occultism, in it’s most general form, is for us above all the research of a state of consciousness; it means to us to understand the nature of one’s self being and the infinite possibilities that are hiding within each person. Man is the one the Hebrew cabbalists call the “Microprosopo” or the “piccolo volto”, to be understood as the microcosm of divine origin; it’s the first Grand Work of magic, the knowledge of the self. When Man understands his own nature, he understands the nature of the divine – like when you see a drop of water you can deduce and imagine the existence of the ocean.
(W.P.) : MORTUARY DRAPE is not a Satanic band, yet the band concept reaches the theories Anton LaVey preached in his Church Of Satan. These theories being nothing more than an extremist copycat of Nietzsche’s one, plus the Satanist aspect.
Your music is highly personal, I still consider it as Black Metal, but it cannot be compared to any other existing band. What can you tell us about the feed back you got from audience back then in the first days, and all along your long existence ? It seems that MORTUARY DRAPE is still quite underrated (almost no interviews, not many people seem to know your band…) or maybe it’s your will to remain “confidential” ? Moreover, as I said your music is unique and I can hardly recognize any influences, so what bands would you regard as such ?
(W.P.) : It’s essential, as a band, to find it’s own musical dimension, but such a goal must not be a conscious, forced target, it must come naturally. MORTUARY DRAPE has its sound, its own identity, but believe me – that’s the result of years of passion and investment…Of course we had influences, references like for instance Mercyful Fate, Celtic Frost, Bathory and Venom but we have learned to catalyse our influences into our own conception of music.
(A) : To answer your other question, I can assure you that MORTUARY DRAPE has never had the intention to stay aside – I believe the problem is rather the fact that here in Italy, a band has to move their ass twice as hard to obtain anything concrete.
You experienced quite a lot of different labels throughout your various releases (Decapitated/Unisound, then Shivadarshan for the “Mourn Path”, Nazgul’s Eyrie Productions for “Secret Sudaria”, Avantgarde, etc…). What can you tell us about this state of fact ? Have you ever been satisfied with the various labels’ work ? Did you face some rip-offs problems maybe ? Tell us everything …
(W.P.) : The main reason for all these changes is that, in the beginning of a “relationship”, all labels always showed up as very interested and promised all and everything and a huge promotion, and as soon as they see the studio bill, they changed their attitude. We know very well that we are not amongst the lucky band that got their recording costs paid, but the etiquette makes that we are amongst the bands that have to take their time to record an album. We cannot record in 14 days in a row with everything done with haste.
Our songs are very complex and even though we are well prepared we need a long time to record them, because they aren’t songs where a couple riffs are played a couple time each, but very complex structures with 20/25 changes of tempo and riff. I think that in our new album “Buried In Time” which will be out in October 2004 we have something like 320 different tempos on the whole album and 5300 notes played.
This is the reason why we have experienced so many label changes, we are a very underground band but when it comes to expenses we are like the big labels’ bands. And while Dimmu Borgir gets 30 000 Euros to record and spend them mostly on whores, drugs and alcohol, MORTUARY DRAPE must satisfy themselves with 3 500 Euros and be careful to record a perfect disc because otherwise it won’t sell since Italian products got a reputation of bad recordings. All this is absurd.
Labels must stop taking the bands for fools. They always tell us they don’t sell enough CDs; so, can you tell me how our previous labels manage to re-release again and again our previous works and to bootleg – and at the same time saying that MD doesn’t sell ? Mystery of faith. FUCK OFF.
As far as I know, you were bootlegged (at least) twice with the re-release” of "All The Witches Dance"& "Into The Drape” on one CD “Into the Catachthonium” by Unisound and the re-release on vinyl of “Secret Sudaria” by MFH (this one called “Licensed from NEP”, but you call it bootleg on your website) … Did you get informed by the labels that did these re-releases ? What is your opinion about that and about the concept of bootlegging in general ?
(W.P.) : Unfortunately being illegally produced e.g. bootlegged is something that is out of our control, yet touches the band in all possible ways. We cannot do otherwise than accept passively this state of things since any legal procedure would cost too much time and money…

MORTUARY DRAPE's gig seems to be something special, to say it smooth !!! It rather looks like a theatre show according to the pictures I got to see – with the orchestra acting as well ! And it seems to be like this since the very beginning. (live pictures since 1986 for instance) What do live shows represent to you ? Are they more important than studio recordings or even than the musical composition process ? You also played live in Greece once… Some words about this particular show ?
(A) : Live appearances and studio are 2 totally different dimensions, yet complementary. The value of a band is proven on stage, of course – nowadays there are such advanced technical facilities in studio, which provides such a huge help that in the end it may be difficult to reckon the value of the band or sound engineer… On stage, the band performs what its really able to; that’s why some bands don’t want to play live, invoking various reasons… As far as I am concerned I find it pretty absurd to record material that you’ll never be able to perform live. In our case, the live dimension is essential, it’s a moment where we get the opportunity to communicate the real feeling of the band, and the live stage is the natural environment for what MORTUARY DRAPE wants to communicate with it’s music. As for the concert in Greece I can tell you that I have great memories of this date ! The reaction of the public was great beyond words ! Together with another concert, in Berlin in Germany this time, it was our best concert !

Another particularity of MORTUARY DRAPE is the incessant line-up changes you had through the years ! As you are there since the very beginning, I guess I can name you as a kind of leader of the band, so what can you tell us about that ? The concept of MORTUARY DRAPE is very sophisticated, is it so difficult to find people with the adequate views or do you tolerate little deviance in the ideologies / views ?
(W.P.) : The only thing that is asked to a member of MORTUARY DRAPE is to believe in what he does ! Unfortunately some people are more interested by the opportunity to enter studio with the band so they can afterwards show off because they have “made a disc”… Ridiculous !

Finally, can you tell us few words about the future of MORTUARY DRAPE ? Do you have any new records planned ? Maybe some live gigs ? Tell us the future, I lost my crystal ball !!!
(A) : On the first of May we have (now it’s had… - ed) another date in Athens and we are naturally enthusiasts at this idea ! There will be some other dates in April – May but not too many, since as I told you we will enter studio this summer and we prefer to concentrate on the recording of the new album !

OK, the inquisition is over !!! Infinite thanks for your time.
I think the clerical institution represent already an insult to what it wants to represent, regarding the fact that they preach stupidities with political and moral goals, concepts that are totally foreign to what christianism initially was ! They are doing everything by themselves and sooner or later the whole is destined to miserably crumble , that’s why I think it’s useless to waste efforts on this !
A salute to the readers and sincere thanks for giving us the opportunity to be featured in these pages !


Franang 07/01/07