Sunday, December 19, 2010

Real Talk: Sakatat

Turkey's Sakatat have been working at it pretty hard in the past couple of years and lucky for us Semih, singer for these grind bastards, was able to lend a few words. Humble beginnings between high-school friends Onur (guitar) and Semih (vocals) in 2005, they've progressed to tour Europe, release 8 splits/eps (with a handful more to come), and worked to create a grindcore scene within Turkey. "I think we hadn't even realized we were about to start a band, that is probably why we picked up such a random word to be our moniker which means "offal" and obviously has nothing to do with what we stand for now." Even though their name might allude to goregrind (for Turkish speakers that is), it's obvious this band's sound doesn't rest in such a gimmick. One listen to their superb split with Dispepsiaa and you'll find yourself in some kind of grindcore time-warp; not sure if it's '87 or what.

Finally completing their lineup in 2008 with the addition of drummer Kaya, the band began recording and touring. "We have been pretty active after he joined in 2008, recorded bunch of split 7"s, played shitload of great shows, toured as much as we could..." vocalist Semih concludes. In light of there being almost no grindcore scene, and a very small punk/hardcore scene, Semih and co. have found ways to flourish by playing in some of Europe's biggest extreme festivals and consistently playing within Turkey and not being negative at the current lack of a scene.

Ucuz Can Pazarı

"As for playing grindcore here, well even though the interest in grindcore is growing, most people still have no clue about what grindcore really is, people tend to think it is same thing as brutal death metal or just some kind of joke. We have been offered to play shows with fascist bands more than once and people were really surprised when we rejected the offers and explained them why! On the bright side, many local punks and metalheads order our records and shirts and people seem to be aware of us, there are recently good number of people at the show when there is a good foreign grind band so there might actually be a grindcore scene here soon."

Beyond Turkey's growing metal scene, Sakatat themselves have had quite a time with the recent Bloodshed Festival in Holland. With big names like Magrudergrind, Suffering Mind, Weekend Nachos and Idiots Parade, not only was it a pleasure to the ears, but an event in of itself. "Bloodshed Festival was a blast[...] Personally I spent the first day catching up with the the homies[...] another good thing about touring, you always get to play with and see great bands." The band isn't short on notches on their belt as they've played at both Obscene Extreme and Play Fast or Don't, along with the recent Bloodshed Festival.

When asked about touring and productivity Semih claims "...we usually end up spending almost one month of each year on tour. We really enjoy it when we play those new songs live while they are fresh! I don't know if you noticed that already but we always try to have some kind of wholeness on our records, if that is the right word. Meaning that we try to make the whole record sound like one single cut not like 5 or more tunes put together. That is the case with the shows too. We like to play the next tune without giving a break in between and make each bunch of sets sound like a single song."

As all this touring, festival playing, and recording continues it's only logical that the band would approach the idea of a full-length release. "We never wanted to rush things when it comes to recording a full-length and finally it seems like the right time to do it. We have the general outline and ideas for a full-length already like the songs, cover artwork, concept etc... so we might give it a shot really soon. Interested labels shouldn't hesitate to contact us."

With great music comes a great attitude, as Semih exclaims " I think the charm and sincerity [of grindcore] would go away if let's say, a grindcore band made a deal with a major company. We listen to all kinds of weird shit, from obscure metal to punkrock and we are involved in many different activities like 'zines, radio show, setting up shows, booking tours, hosting touring bands and more so whatever we do, we keep it DIY and encourage our friends to do so. DIY, on the other hand, might have different definitions depending on who you ask. Our definition would be something like keeping it as capitalism-free as possible, not for profit, sincere and always partying like there is no tomorrow!"

And as for last words:
"I'd like to add that we have a split 7" with MESRINE coming out soon, it will be released by To Live A Lie in the States, Grindblock and Useless in Europe and Bucho Discos in Brazil, also the rough recording of our show at Bloodshed will soon be released on tape by Death Agony & Screams. Moreover we will record another split 7" soon, this time with our comrades MATKA TERESA and we might even go on a tour in summer if we manage to get the full-length out by then. You can check the other news and tour dates at our web-site:"

Beyond Sakatat you can stalk their members in a few other projects:

Semih co-hosts an online radio show/podcast that you can check out here.
Semih's zine, Impact Drill
Nettlethrone, drummer Kaya's former band.
Unreleased album cover, from their boyband days

It was a great pleasure to interview these Turkish upstarts; my converts and I seem to have a lot to look forward to.



Alex Layzell said...

Sakatat are a great band, and they have achieved alot in a relatively short space of time.

Andrew Childers said...

awesome interview. awesome-er band.

Scull Crasher said...

Nice interview and blog! I just found out about it from Sakatat! Keep it up!
cheers and take care.