By Tex Bradley
Unbelievably Bad Contributor
Mille Petrozza has just turned 49 – 34 years of which have been spent fronting German thrash hotshots Kreator, who have just announced a fresh round of Australian tour dates in support of Gods of Violence; their 14th album.
UB calls Petrozza to chitchat about the struggle between good and evil.
You started Kreator 30 years ago in your teen years and the albums are iconic, but how do you feel about the old stuff now?
Nowadays? It’s kind of strange because I’ve been doing this for so long that the earlier albums seem so far away, yet very close to me. A lot of those songs mean a lot, but on the other hand, I’m not such a nostalgic person and I try to live in the here and now. So to me, the story’s not over yet. So looking back, those albums are a huge part of my history, but not so important for what I’m doing nowadays; it’s more like an inspiration for when I come up with new stuff. But more in the sense that I don’t want to repeat myself, playing the same riffs. That’s why I sometimes listen to the older songs to avoid repeating riffs that I’ve already written. But on the other hand, yeah there’s some cool stuff that we did back in the day, but also there’s a lot of cool stuff that we do now.
I read that the new album was mostly inspired by religion, conceptually. And that’s something you’ve touched on in the past with a lot of Kreator stuff, but this one seems to be focused on how religion is prominent in current events; particularly terrorism. Do you think that it’s from a more political perspective this time?
No, not at all. I don’t really like politics. I hate politics really, to be honest. I think there’s nothing more boring than politics really. But on the other hand, it’s a nice source of inspiration because most of it sucks so much that it pisses me off and inspires me to write angry lyrics. For that matter, I would say that current events and politics are an inspiration, but I’m not too involved, you know what I mean? I try not to be too involved and make my life miserable by thinking about what’s wrong with this world. I think it’s a good outlet. For a creative outlet it’s a nice source of inspiration, but there’s no other meaning to me than inspiration. I couldn’t care less for politics, really.
Did you have much input into the gnarly artwork?
Oh yeah, we were working with the same artist that we worked with on Phantom Antichrist. I sent Jan [Meininghaus], the guy that did the artwork, some demo tapes in order to get inspired. We changed ideas for almost a year and it was a little bit of a struggle to get the artwork where it is now. I think we had like three different versions that we were not one-hundred-percent happy with, but at the end of the day it worked out all fine. To me it gets you in a certain mood. It gets you in the mood for the record, and that’s what an artwork should do. When you look at an artwork, you should get a glimpse of what’s to come when you listen to a record, and I think that it’s a perfect blend with the music. It gets you somewhere.
“Gods of Violence”:
So who are the Gods of Violence?
Gods Of Violence to me means that evil and violence is a part of human DNA, so to speak. And it’s been present forever. There was never a time on earth where there was peace on earth, on the whole planet. It’s part of human nature I guess. Ancient civilisations had the same characteristics as current psychology. You can see a lot of similarities between the ancient way people were looking at the world and human behaviour was structured, and it’s still the same, I think. I don’t think it will ever leave, because it’s an essential thing. It kind of belongs to humanity…to start wars and be evil, just as much as being a good person. It’s like the ying-yang kind of thing.
Gods of Violence is out on Nuclear Blast.
Kreator w/ Vader Australian and New Zealand tour dates:
Sept 2 – Auckland, The Studio, Auckland NZ
Sept 5 – Capitol, Perth
Sept 7 – The Gov, Adelaide
Sept 8 – 170 Russell, Melbourne
Sept 9 – Manning Bar, Sydney
Sept 10 – The Zoo, Brisbane