Conqueror will be in Europe this time next week and we thought it was high time we caught up with them for a status update. We spoke to Richard …
Since our last interview with Conqueror, you guys got signed to Genet Records! Nice one! How did that happen? What does it mean for the band?
Thanks! I had been in contact with the guys from Ieperfest for some time, trying to work out the logistics of having us play at Europe’s premier hardcore festival. After a lot of back and forth, the guys mentioned that they also run Genet Records and would be keen to do a release for us. They had previously done releases for bands such as Rotten Sound, Walls of Jericho and Kingdom, so we jumped at the opportunity. In terms of the band, its a great platform for us to get our music out in Europe and have a home base somewhere else in the world. We’ve built a great relationship with the guys at Genet and are super excited for the future!
You guys have an amazing European tour coming up. Where are you guys playing? Give us the low down.
We will be playing in Europe over July/August. Touring with fellow Genet Records band, ASHES. We’re hitting Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden and Czech Republic.
Your new album Life on Repeat definitely shows your music evolving and taking an even darker and heavier approach than ever. Take us through the recording process for the album?
We recorded the album over December 2013. The whole thing took about a week. We recorded and mixed it ourselves and had our friend, Rogan Kelsey from Lapdust Studios, master the album.
If a listener had to take one thing away from listening to Conqueror, what would you want it to be?
Bruises from a wild couch mosh, and perhaps an interest and awareness that South Africa has an underground music scene.
You guys are probably one of the hardest working South African bands ever, and it’s obviously paying off. Most other bands seem really lazy in comparison. What does it take to make it work?
We put a lot of time into the band, but it doesn’t feel necessarily like hard work. We love booking shows, printing merch and writing music. The whole scope of the hardcore community. It’s about more than just the music. Seeing kids at shows pick up albums from Minority Records or whatever distro is there, to buying other local bands merch and music. It all helps build a better sense of community and excitement in the scene. Seeing kids in JHB singing along to PEASANT on their first tour up here was amazing to see! To me, that’s progression.
What local and international acts are you guys feeling at the moment?
I’ve had the HOURS album, As You Were, on repeat since it came out. On an international tip, been listening to lots of BENT LIFE and the upcoming ASHES release, No Compromise.
What does the future hold for the band now that you’ve signed to a label and are touring internationally?
We have a split 7” with PEASANT coming out on Roastin’ Records later in the year and we’re looking to do another release on Genet Records in 2015. Super stoked to be doing an SA tour with our mates, ASHES in February!
The JHB underground scene is owning at the moment. Why do you think this is?
I don’t think its just JHB. Port Elizabeth, Durban and Cape Town seem to be doing really well at the moment. New bands are coming up and some great releases have been put out in the last couple months. There’s a fresh excitement at shows again and kids are stoked on local bands again.
One of my favourite things about Conqueror is how you do everything yourselves. What’s your opinion on bands who have managers, agents, tour buses etc…
It’s dependent on the band really. In South Africa I don’t really see the point. There are only a handful of people that play music full time, and for them it makes sense. Being in a hardcore band, the DIY ethic builds great relationships with people in other cities and putting on shows and doing releases is part of that. I think you would be distancing yourself from your scene if you run things through a middle man. That being said, we’ll take a roadie to carry gear and some fresh white towels at each show! Pronto! haha
“Hardcore is probably at the best point it’s ever been”. What do you guys think?
No Warning are playing shows again!
Anything else to add?
Shout out to RISE! Be sure to check out HOURS, WILDERNESSKING, BLACK MATH, PEASANT, THE MOTHS. Thanks for the chat.
Make sure to go ‘Like’ them on Facebook to keep up to date with their tour dates etc.