By Danger Coolidge
Unbelievably Bad Editor
Black Jesus guitarist / vocalist / mainstay Adrian Naudi (ex-Fallout) has led the band for almost ten years, through a couple of line-up changes, across a wide spectrum of old-school death metal, and into the present.
The current BJ line-up – Adrian (guitar / vocals), Ben Reichman (bass / vocals), Tim Timson (guitar) and Iván Toro (drums) – have just finished a new recording – a potential nine-track EP titled Malevolence Rising – and they have a few New South Wales tour dates lined up this month alongside local guides Dark Horse. Death marches on.
We talked to Adrian about going through changes…
How has Black Jesus changed over all the years, and how has the scene around you changed, if at all?
It’ll be 10 years next year since this band started. During that time the band has changed personal twice over, first in 2011, and again just last year. With these changes, our sound changed too. The first incarnation was crusty and punk heavy. The second incarnation saw the sound tighten up a lot and take on more of a metal sound. The current incarnation I think has the best of both. It’s faster, more abrasive and louder than it has ever been. During these 10 years, a fuckload of new bands have come about and there is more going on than I can remember, which can only be a good thing for all of us. We’re playing with a pretty wide variety of bands now as well, which has done us the world of good in terms of more exposure. It’s also meant we have been able to play heaps more shows, which is why we do all this in the first place.
There’s going to be new Black Jesus recordings released soon – give us the scoop, what is coming out and when?
Yeah there is!!! We recorded nine tracks over February and March this year. We are looking for a label to release it as a 12” EP (45rpm). Once we get that then we’ll get it out there.
How different is the new material from the stuff on Everything Black…Everything Dead – has there been any stylistic shift over the couple of years since?
Everything Black… was far more measured and precise, due in big part to our old guitarist Mick Farley and old drummer Greg Eshman. Top blokes the both of them. Greg was big on swing and timing and that had a big influence on the songs we wrote. It also meant we took a long time to get them right and feel comfortable playing them. The new songs came together much quicker and have a faster hardcore style approach. This too is due to the new personnel we have. Ivan had big shoes to fill in replacing Greg but he’s managed to do so in a way that brings the same quality swing and timing, but also grinds with crazy fast double bass and a frenetic pace that verges on chaos. I tells people he is the engine of this band and that ain’t a word of lie. Not long after Ivan joined, Tim joined and brought with him crazy solo skills and killer riffs that naturally locked in with the change in approach we wanted to take. Whilst I wouldn’t say our style has changed all that much, the intensity, volume and abrasiveness definitely has.
Where did you record the new stuff and where does it rate on the fidelity scale?
We recorded it ourselves at our jam space. We love the sound of that room and we had a real good idea of the sound we were looking for. Rather than go into a separate studio and try explain what we wanted to get, we decided to spend that coin on buying our own recording equipment. We recorded the music over a day and then recorded solos and vocals over the next few weeks at my place. We mixed it ourselves and then got old mate Dav Byrne (Iridium Audio) to master it. What we achieved is exactly what we were looking for, which is capturing what we sound like live. So in terms of fidelity, yeah, I’d say it’s the truest documentation of tunes this band has ever done.
Black Jesus is touring NSW with old mates Dark Horse – why should people put their bongs down and get off their couches for this?
People shouldn’t put down their bongs; they should bring them along. We won’t judge you because as forward thinking members of society, we embrace drug diversity. We think that’s what makes Australia the beautiful country that it is. Opening your mind whilst listening to good tunes is definitely a state we should all get into more often. So think of our shows as the perfect opportunity to celebrate diversity and delirium.
Y’know, when I used Google to research this article I found out Timothy Timson is a registered sex offender. Has this made life more difficult for him, finding employment and such?
Tim may have more to say on this topic, but I think its fair to say that Tim has made a few mistakes over his young life. He is trying hard to learn from them, though. He is really dedicating himself to his community service and I gotta say his strip of the Hume Freeway is the cleanest stretch of road in Australia. It was whilst collecting roadside rubbish and roadkill that he tells me he’s decided to channel his carnal desires into writing his first novel Diaries of Tim Flogg – A Fantasy Tale. At first he was angling towards a graphic novel, but he’s since (wisely) decided to let words do the talking. If you ask him nice, he might even sling you an advance chapter or even a promotional copy once it’s published.
Black Jesus / Dark Horse NSW dates:
August 17 – Hamilton Station Hotel, Newcastle w/ Disparo! and Obat Batuk
August 18 – The Valve bar, Sydney w/ Disparo!, The Plauge, Horrisonous
August 19 – The Basement, Canberra w/ Mytile Vey Lorth, The Plauge