Hatematter - Interview

Hatematter is a prominent Brazilian melodic death/groove metal band that recently released their fourth and latest work, "Antithesis", a masterful piece that transcends metal boundaries, amalgamating diverse influences into a cohesive and emotionally impactful whole. With 11 intense tracks, this album is a sonic odyssey reflecting the challenges, losses, and resilience the group faced during its creation amidst the pandemic, adding even more weight and poignant technique to the band's signature modern sound. Spokesperson for Hatematter, bassist André Martins, shares insights about the creative process and also discusses the impact of new members on the band's dynamics and reveals the next steps to be taken.

Marcelo Vieira

How was the process of creating and recording the album "Antithesis," especially considering the challenges faced during the pandemic and the loss of original guitarist and founding member Gustavo Polidori?

Those were years of uncertainties, both due to the pandemic and the losses. We never stop composing and exchanging material, so some riffs were born while Polidori was still alive. In other words, the pandemic was already bringing us down, and losing Polidori intensified this, which reflected in the density and the number of layers in the songs.

Could you talk a bit more about the theme and concept behind "Antithesis" and how this is reflected in the lyrics and music of the album?

"Antithesis" follows the path we took with "Metaphor" (2018): varied themes within the context of sci-fi and some more intimate lyrics. The idea was to choose themes that made the most of the synths, and for the album title and artwork, the contradiction between technology and nature.

What musical and artistic influences shaped the sound and atmosphere of "Antithesis"?

Basically, the synths. The addition of keyboardist Rafael Augusto Lopes challenged us to make the best use of the new resources we had available. As a result, we restructured all the songs to take full advantage. Speaking of influences, I believe it was a mix of 2000s melodic death metal with industrial metal.

"Antithesis" reflects a dark period marked by various emotions. How do you balance these emotions in the album, and what do you hope listeners feel when they hear it?

Probably each band member would have a personal and different answer to this question. In my case, I believe that once the music is released, it no longer belongs to you, and I hope people identify different feelings with each listen. I hope they explore all the layers and notice all the details we put into the songs and based on that, create their own vision of the material.

Explaining the title, could you highlight some of the dualities and antitheses present in the lyrics and music of "Antithesis"?

If I do that, I'll be revealing the layers within the album! [Laughs.] But, as an example, the fastest and most aggressive song has the most positive lyrics, and the more intimate songs flirt, in the lyrics, with the band's first album, "Doctrines" (2012). When we released the album, we posted individual artworks for the songs. My tip is to look at this material carefully.

How has the addition of guitarist Thiago Ribeiro and drummer André Kim influenced Hatematter's dynamics and sound? What are the band's expectations and plans with this new lineup?

I understand that Hatematter has a well-defined style and dynamic, and lineup changes end up functioning as an addition in arrangements and visions without altering the band's structure. It's like redecorating some rooms in a house that is already finished and functional. In Thiago's case, since he has been the band's lyricist since "Foundation" (2015), I believe he can now challenge himself to bring new elements beyond the lyrical and melodic parts, exploring more riffs and the composition spaces of the instrumental. In Kim's case, I think it's more challenging because he is a drummer from the stoner school, meaning he likes to play with pressure and strength, and I'm very curious to see how he will add these elements to future compositions.

How was the experience of collaborating with Mayara Puertas on the track 'Liberate Me'? I would also like to know how this partnership came about.

I've known Mayara's work since before Torture Squad, we've shared the stage with her on several occasions, and Rafael Augusto Lopes works with her in Fanttasma and other projects, so she's an incredible person who is part of our circle. When we were pre-producing 'Liberate Me', we thought it would be cool to have a narration at the beginning of the track. We thought of Mayara, Lopes sent a message, and it happened! The next day, she was visiting us in the studio to record, and as it turned out, she did much more than just a narration! [Laughs.]

What did her inclusion add to the dynamic and message of 'Liberate Me'?

Thiago had already structured the lyrics so that the ship from "Event Horizon", which has a female voice in the movie, would stand out in the song's chorus, so Mayara took on all the parts where the ship would be speaking, and we loved the result! For those who have seen the movie, they will notice that lyrics, music, and art create layers!

How has the response from fans and critics been to the album? Was there any specific feedback that surprised you?

It is certainly the album we have promoted the best for reviews! And all have been very positive; even those with some constructive criticisms have always been very respectful to us. I think the reviews that talked about the addition of the synths were the ones that surprised us the most because we felt a sense of mission accomplished! Of course, we have much more to show and add, but we feel we are on the right path.

What are the next steps for Hatematter? Are there plans for tours, music videos, or other projects on the horizon?

No tours this year, just occasional shows. It has been a very busy year in our personal lives, and we need to balance that. On the other hand, this allows us to work on new compositions. A big goal for us is to reduce the time between releases, and we are very focused on that!

Entered: 6/14/2024 6:05:00 PM

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