Kreator will be releasing their new album, Gods Of Violence, on January 27th via Nuclear Blast, and the German legends have added another instant classic to their already impressive discography. Their fourteenth record captures the band performing at their highest level, and proves that they are still an unstoppable force in the metal scene. I recently got to speak with Mille Petrozza about their upcoming record, the band’s legacy, and much more. Enjoy the chat below, and pre-order Gods Of Violence today!
Metal Mark: Mille, congratulations on the new record. Once again, you guys have put together a metal masterpiece.
Mille Petrozza: Thank you Mark. I love to hear that. We are really proud of what we did, so to hear the positive feedback makes us feel like we did something right.
MM: Gods Of Violence will be the fourteenth album for Kreator. Is it crazy to think that you guys have put out this many records?
MP: It’s weird isn’t it (laughs). To me, it doesn’t seem like fourteen records. Hell, it doesn’t even seem like a thirty-year career. That’s what happens when you are so passionate about something and enjoying every moment I guess. Time passes, and next thing you know it’s been thirty years. It’s surreal, but I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished so far.
MM: Throughout the thirty years, you’ve seen the metal scene go through many trends, yet the band has stayed relevant amongst all of it. How do you best explain how you’ve accomplished that?
MP: That’s a good question. I think it simply comes down to us trying to do our best at all times. Plus, we have to live up to our name. If you’re in Kreator, and you stop being creative, what’s the point? That may sound kind of cheesy, but it’s true. Either we live up to the name, and what it stands for, or there’s no point for us to release any new music. Luckily, we’ve had the right members come in and out over the years to keep the creative juices flowing, and I feel like we are as strong as we’ve ever been right now. I feel like you can really hear that in the new record, and that makes it very special to me.
MM: This new record comes out four years after Phantom Antichrist was released, and the response to that album was massive. Did that put any extra pressure on you guys when you began writing the new material?
MP: I would say it did, but in a good way. It gave us a healthy push to do our very best. I’ll be honest, it was a real challenge to top that record, but I think we’ve done it. We knew how much fans enjoyed that record, so when we began writing the new music, we really wanted to give the fans something just as exciting, if not more ya know. I know a lot of bands write for themselves, as we do, but we really want to make sure the fans are happy as well. If it has the Kreator name on it, it has to be something special.
MM: So far, so good, because the first two singles have been well received by fans all over the world. Why did you choose to release the title track and ‘Satan Is Real’ first?
MP: I think it’s always nice to release the title track first to the fans. Our title tracks always give fans a good taste of what they can expect on the new albums, and this one does that very well. ‘Satan Is Real’ was chosen as the second single because it has a different vibe that can be found on the record. As for the third single, it will be ‘Totalitarian Terror,’ which is one of the heaviest songs we’ve ever written I think. We wanted to give fans a good idea of what’s coming, and I think these three songs accomplish that very well.
MM: As you always have, you guys released the two singles with videos, and they came out amazing. A lot of bands have lost faith in videos, yet you continue to put so much effort and time into each one. Why are they still so important to you?
MP: I love videos. I always have, and I always will. I think that it’s a great way to support the music, and visually make it come to life. I know there aren’t any outlets on television anymore, but YouTube is huge, and people still watch them, and it gets them talking. Some people love them, some don’t. Either way, it brings up discussion, which is a good thing. We will continue to release videos for as long as we can. It’s an important thing in Kreator, and the two we’ve released so far came out spectacular.
MM: I agree. Videos have always been a staple of the band, as have the powerful lyrics. You can scream as good as anyone, but you’ve always had a meaning and story behind what you say, which I greatly admire. The new record features some of your best lyrical work, in my opinion, and I find it refreshing that you still put so much importance on your words.
MP: Thank you, I really appreciate that. Lyrics matter. I don’t care what anyone says. They matter. They always have, and they always will. Speaking for myself, I want to give each title a meaning with my words, and I think I did that very well on this record. ‘Satan is real’ is one of those songs that I’m really proud of when it comes to the lyrics. The title itself is almost cheesy, but when you read the lyrics, you get the idea of what I’m talking about, and it makes it more real. It makes it more powerful. Lyrics can make or break a song, and I feel that some of the lyrics on this new record make the songs that much better, so I’m very happy with that.
MM: The lyrics on this record focus a lot on the violence surrounding us, and it seems like every day we hear about another shooting, or terrorist attack. Humans are supposed to evolve, but it seems like we’ve been going backwards recently, and hate is leading the way.
MP: It’s interesting and scary to look at the world right now. As you said, we hear about a new tragedy every day, and the ugliness seems to overthrow the beauty of this world. All we can do is stay optimistic, and cherish the good times when they happen. I truly believe we will be okay, even in the confusing times we live in now. We just must stay positive, and promote the beautiful things. For Kreator, we promote our music, peace, and the idea of a healthy lifestyle. I think that’s as much as we can do in a band. We have a voice, so we should use it for good things, and help people escape what’s going on around them. I’m very proud to say that we’ve done that for over thirty years now.
MM: Very cool. Well you’re definitely giving fans a place to escape here in the States on the upcoming Decibel Magazine tour in March and April. Kreator shows are always something to see, but do you have something extra special planned for this run?
MP: We do, but I can’t say what. Anyone that has seen us, knows that we always deliver, and they can expect that for sure. We always perform at our highest level for the fans, and we have to more than ever on this tour. Every band on the bill is exceptional, so fans better be ready for a thrashing all night.
MM: Hell yes. How much of the new stuff are you going to throw at fans on this run?
MP: As of now, I’m thinking four or five new songs. There will be a lot of touring on this record, so this won’t be the only time fans can see us, but we definitely want to promote what we’ve done, because we are really proud of it. Of course we will throw in the classics that fans want to hear, but I’m excited to see the response to the new material live, because I think it will crush.
MM: I can’t wait! You guys have announced that tour, as well as dates in Europe, so what else do you have in store for 2017?
MP: That’s easy. We want to tour, and make people happy. Without the fans, we are nothing. There is no Kreator. They are the reason that we’ve been doing this so long, so we want to repay them with incredible albums, and powerful live shows. That’s what we are bringing with Gods Of Violence, and on the tours surrounding the record. We want 2017 to be a massive year for the band, and our fans, and it’s setting up to be exactly that, so get ready!