Decapitated: The Connection

"I love that we are all inspiring one another; it is a really cool thing. Musicians are all connected – we’re all connected, from opposite sides of the world even - it’s just the power of music".

It is truly humbling at times to witness firsthand the modest, unassuming nature of an artist, an artist who is solely consumed with his art. Wacław Kiełtyka aka ‘Vogg’ is not your average artist, nor your average guitarist – Vogg is the sole guitarist for Decapitated. A band whose influence on the metal scene as a whole is incomparable and never to be equal. When it comes to the talent, skill; ability – Vogg has it in spades. The capacity this artist yields to not only inspire himself but the generations of musicians after him is what is genuinely satisfying. Back with a vengeance, Decapitated have been accepting the expected adulation over the last few weeks with the release of their seventh studio album Anticult, an album which will have you swiftly flipping tables. Metal As Fuck caught up with Vogg on the cusp of the album’s release… and I could prattle about the album here – or we can hear it from the maestro himself… 

“My day has been nice, I actually caught up with Martin [Marcin Rygiel, Bass 1997 - 2007] today; yeah we had some beers, caught up on things, chatted about the old days…. It is nice to relax a little on what is a going to be a big week”. Indeed, only a few days away from the latest release for Decapitated and that is of course Anticult, I have had a sneak peek and it is outstanding, congratulations. “Thank you, it’s great to hear – I am really excited about this album, and with only a few days left – there are already a lot of rumors going around – the reviews are great and people seem to be really satisfied with it, and yeah it is very exciting”. Take us through the lead up to this release - how have things been back at Camp Decapitated? “It has been a long time since we finished the mix for the album – this was enough time to organise the promotions team and the interviews and I think I feel great about the first two single releases and the video clip. We’ve never done it this way before – we always release a video after the album is released – this way was different and it was worth it. It gave us the opportunity to get everything ready properly for the fans. We haven’t sat at home either – we have been touring Scandinavia and have done a few festivals so far”. It has been a very busy few months for the band and as you said – doing the promotion this way this time was a great idea “A much better plan and much more professional this time. We didn’t want to release this album in May or June because we were competing with a lot of other new releases “.  

What was the first task you focused on when starting to write this album? “The most important thing to me about Decapitated – something that comes through in each album is that we had created our own style – when writing Anticult; from the first song, you can tell it is Decapitated – it is that sound the name is famous for. This is the most important aspect of both the album and the band”. 

The themes on the album are also interesting – what did you want to explore both lyrically and musically in the new album? “I was trying to write an album I could really feel. It is important for me to write music that I really want to play – when I feel I have something really good, I will run with it –I am inspired by so many things and so many bands from the past like Pantera and Metallica and of course any thrash metal band. Decapitated take and create from experience and it can push the music in all sorts of directions and I love that freedom, I can use this freedom to make something fresh and this is why the Anticult album is so varied – each song is different – it is a very surprising album – you cannot predict what is going to happen next which makes this album that little bit more interesting than the last”.  There is that element of surprise with this album, I agree and I believe that this is its draw card. You mention you wanted to make it fresh – did you encounter any challenges when putting it together? “This whole album was a challenge for me – I think we made that next step forward so that came with its own set of challenges, stepping into the new world with your music. We learnt a lot that’s for sure – we took lessons learnt from previous recordings and thanks to all those experiences we are a better band right now – production is better, sound is better – we could talk a lot about the production for this album but starting from the composing process to the recording process it was a lot of time and it was a challenge but a positive one”. It has definitely paid off – everything the band set out to achieve with this album you have done so “Oh most definitely”.  Relating Decapitated from where you are now to the formative years of 1996 – what can you say about the bands growth? “It’s a long time – it has been a very long time and a lot of things happened in the early days for the band – and even chatting with Martin earlier – we were talking about the old days, and when I see Decapitated; 1996 Decapitated – when we started, we were teenagers, very young – 12 and 15 years old – I cannot imagine that now – when I see kids this age now I just can’t see it, it’s crazy. It’s a funny thing. There have also been a lot of member changes – I am the only original member now and we have had a lot of loss, a lot of loss over the years. The only thing that hasn’t changed is the music. This band has been half my life – half my life! And I have put so much into this band – it’s really cool to be a part of this band – there are days, days like this today – we have an album coming out soon with positive reviews. It is a nice lifestyle, I won’t lie. I love this life, I love to travel the world and play my music to our fans”.  And I think over the years, with everything the band have produced; that reputation and respect the band have gained is also something to be immensely proud of “Yes – I am very proud of that, a lot of people consider Decapitated as one of the most important bands of today and that the music of Decapitated has inspired so many bands to write their own music and this is great. I feel a little like the grandfather – and yet when I started I had bands and musicians who inspired me, I love that we are all inspiring one another; it is a really cool thing. Musicians are all connected – we’re all connected, from opposite sides of the world even - it’s just the power of music”.  

And speaking of all the touring around the world, we’re going to have to start touring this bad boy – where is the band heading once the album is unleashed? “A few festivals this summer, Bloodstock in the UK – we’ve played Grasspop already – it was amazing. Then our next plan is to tour the US and Canada around September then back over for a headlining tour in Europe in November – after that, we’ll see – probably more tours” [Laughs] hopefully Australia will see you in the new year “It is possible, it’s all possible”.