Psycroptic: Australia's No. 1 Export Is In High Demand

"At the end of the day a dickhead is a dickhead"

When it comes to Psycroptic, there is no compromise on creativity - a band conspicuously noted for their prominent reputation in the industry made this way due to their incredible talents, their honesty and integrity and also their great Australian humour. Psycroptic have high expectations of themselves and are well aware of when something ‘just fucking sucks’ - the band acknowledge to having a higher standard of quality control and learnt long ago that they do not have to compromise their creativity for all the wah peddles in China. Metal As Fuck caught up with (easily) one of Australia’s favourite drummers, Dave Haley to chat about all things ‘Psycro’.

I hear Psycroptic were busy filming for a DVD recently? “Yeah, we did that in Hobart last week, at our home away from home, The Brisbane Hotel. We thought we’d put something special together, jammed about 300 odd people in, it was killer. All the proceeds from the show went to an organisation called DevilArc; a non-for-profit animal protection society whose main goal is to save the Tassie Devil from extinction. We raised enough money to sponsor a devil for twelve months and we were also able to name it… ‘Psycro’ [Laughs]

The band is soon to embark on The Necrotic Repression tour with Aborted and I don’t believe I have heard of more bands fighting to be on this bill in particular, alongside Psycroptic in the longest time, it’s like women fighting at a sales rack. How eager are you guys to kick starting the tour? [Laughs] “We’re pretty stoked for it, Aborted are very good friends of ours and have just put out a sick new album, we’ve promised to bring them out for ages so it’s going to be a lot of fun”. Although extremely busy Psycroptic are currently in recording mode for the sixth album, a good thing as fans don’t seem to function too well with large gaps between Psycroptic albums. “We have almost finished recording it actually, the writing process does take a long time for us but we always try to be creative. I headed into the studio over the weekend to see what the guys were up to as I’ve just shortly got back from Europe, touring with Pestilence so I hadn’t checked in for a while, so I am very excited to get this one out”. Psycroptic’s last album received such high acclaim, how did you up the ante this time around? “We brought in a lot more elements this time around, especially vocal wise; there is definitely a lot more experimentation. Bringing in different influences – we said to Joe [Haley - Guitar] (who basically records and produces our albums) like just go crazy and he has done just that, we have captured more old school Psycroptic and incorporated the ambience, pushing a lot harder than our last album that’s for sure. It’s totally groovy”. [Laughs]

Each time Australian metal is mentioned anywhere over the globe, it is Psycroptic, every time who is everyone’s prime cut. What would you consider being the frontrunner to your success? “Staying honest to ourselves and creating music we want to hear. We try to work as hard as we can, within reason as we all still have day jobs. If we like something musically we’ll do it, we don’t feel the need to cater to anyone’s taste or opinions, we respect and value our fans opinions, but at the end of the day it’s their opinion and besides they have all stuck with us long enough to know that every album we write is different from the last. The element of surprise and anticipation is always there, and it always keeps us guessing as well, I mean I have no idea what this album sounds like, until it gets mixed and mastered, I have no idea. Our tastes have changed a lot in fifteen years obviously, we still like our previous work, but new styles and influences come into the mix, which is a given. Not a risk more of going where our current influences are taking us. Each time we write, we try to write the best possible album we can at that time and when we put it out, that’s how we feel – it’s the best we’ve done at that time”.

There are a lot of important commodities in heavy metal so what are some of Psycroptic’s inclinations? “The friendship, just the brotherhood of the band, we have been together for over ten years, toured relentlessly. It is so important to me and it’s what I hold dear, just hanging out with my friends and having adventures around the place”. Being in the crux of the industry for as you say ten years now, has all the fantasies of the industry been put to rest? “We are under no illusions of how the industry works and I use the term industry in the loosest possible way. A lot of people in the ‘music industry’ think it’s cool to work half as hard but charge twice as much as anywhere else, in the real world they'd get a fucking shock. From a lot of past experience we can kind of see through a lot of the bullshit now, yet every once in a while something slips through and you get surprised but at the end of the day a dickhead is a dickhead and a cool dude is a cool dude".

Although fans are amped for the impending Australian tour, interest also grows as to what is keeping the band busy for the remainder of the year? “Getting the album finished is top priority however we have a few shows coming up shortly, we are playing Heavy Mags Brewtality in Melbourne and a New Zealand tour hopefully we’ll be announcing soon, there are potentially some Asian dates and there is a pretty cool tour we have got lined up for the end of the year which we can’t reveal yet [Laughs] but hopefully next month we’ll have some details out”.