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Overmars - Under Scrutiny

Discussion in 'Metal Interviews' started by circus_brimstone, Jul 15, 2005.

  1. circus_brimstone

    circus_brimstone Forest: Sold Out

    Jul 5, 2003
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    [IMGLEFT][/IMGLEFT]By Jason Jordan

    Overmars are dense. Don’t be deceived by the fact that Affliction, Endocrine…Vertigo is their debut full-length, or the fact that the band has only existed for four years, because their output will pummel you if need be. Rather, visit the record on a regular basis, and don’t listen to it in short bursts. Given time, its brilliance will soon be decidedly conspicuous. And, moving on, let’s hear what Xavier (vocals) and Ben (drums) have to say about that.

    I’ve never interviewed a band with so many members, and I want to begin by exploring the complexities of a seven-piece outfit. Do all members’ personalities mesh relatively well? Can some spats be attributed to the simple fact that you have so many people on stage at once, in the same vehicle, or somewhere similar?

    Xavier: Yes, we work together very well. Overmars is a collective act, not a one-person project with some session musicians. Everybody participates.

    Ben: Well, that’s funny you talk about that, because we just lost our keyboard player due to that kind of problem. Right now, we’re just on the end of a tour, and everything went just right. I think we’re all complementary, that’s what makes us strong. Being numerous can be a real problem, but personally, I see it as huge luck for us. I like each Overmars person for a different reason…and above all that, we are sharing the same vision of life. We’re really 7 friends who play music together.

    Speaking of touring, as of July 9th, you just wrapped up your summer tour with Playing Enemy. How were the crowds? Were they mostly receptive to your nuanced style?

    X: The tour was fine. I just regret it happened in the summer. It’s definitely not the best season to tour in Europe. The mood is too holiday oriented, and I didn’t feel that stress that feeds me on tour. But anyway, it was a real good time. The public was ok, very attentive to our music and our live shows. It’s hard to say if the audience really enjoys us on stage, because we don’t play that kind of music pushing the public to mosh. But most of the time, they didn’t leave the venue and some girls and guys came to us saying nice things. And it was great to tour with Playing Enemy. Those guys are really awesome live, but because of my bad English, I had some difficulties understanding all the jokes Andrew (drummer) told.

    B: More and more, people get what we do… It’s funny to see that at every gig, only a few people in the audience like what we do, but those few people really (and I mean really) get into it. After the last gig, one guy came to me and told me he was about to cry during one of our songs. That’s one of the nicest greetings someone ever said to me. And touring with Playing Enemy was just awesome ! They were really nice and I already miss them. And touring with the Rorschach drummer is coooooool no?!!? By the way, Andrew, if you’re reading this, thanx again for the sticks.


    Knowing that you’re French, can you envision Overmars opening/headlining a tour in which all the bands are of your nationality such as Comity, Wormfood, among others? Also, France is renowned for its black metal scene. Would you ever tour with a BM band, or even a NSBM group?

    X: We already played some shows with Comity and we plan to tour in 2006 with Tantrum. Bands we tour with may be French or not, it doesn’t really matter as long as we feel ok with them. About touring with a BM band, why not if I enjoy their music and artistic approach? And if they’re interesting people too. About NSBM… I love to read NSBM bands’ interviews. It’s really funny. Varg Vikernes’s (Burzum) interviews in Lords of Chaos are the funniest things I’ve read this year. But touring with a NSBM band won’t make me laugh that much. My humor has some limits, even with Nazi jokes. I’m much too intolerant to play with Nazis!

    B: The same. Black metal is not, has never been and will never be my culture. I come from hardcore punk. I’m a citizen of earth, not of Hell. Moreover, it’s a weird situation to be on a metal label, and still touring in the hardcore punk scene…


    Regarding the album (finally!), I’ve been brushing up on my definitions, and still can’t figure out exactly what the title is referring to. Is there a universal meaning for Affliction, Endocrine…Vertigo?

    X: Not really. There is not even a common meaning for all Overmars’s members. The title is a compromise between all of us. It was really hard to agree on a title. Some of us didn’t even want to have one, but Antoine and I strongly insisted it. Affliction, Endocrine…Vertigo is supposed to summarize all the feelings all Overmars’s members have about the creative process and result of this record.

    Why was the five-part “Destroy All Dreamers” scattered amongst the other compositions rather than offered all at once?

    X: To give some air to what could have been a really suffocating and linear record. I love long and heavy songs but 70 minutes of only that can be really hard to bear. To me, it gives a second way to approach this record. I like the idea of listening to a record with different angles and perceptions.


    Your debut is so complex. Approximately how long did it take you to write, record, and polish it? Were any tunes overwhelmingly tedious to record or finish?

    X: It took about a year to write all the necessary material to Affliction, Endocrine…Vertigo. The first written songs were tested live many times, so we had the chance to see what we had to modify. The beginning of the writing process was quite spontaneous. The end was more calculated, in such a way to propose a coherent and challenging work, from the beginning to the very end. I hate records where everything is told with the two first tracks. I love records where your attention is solicited until the end, where you can be surprised at the last minute. I hope we succeeded in making such a record. We finished composing the last song a few weeks before entering the studio. Vocals on “Destroy All Dreamers” were improvised in studio. It took us two weeks to record and mix it, with the great help of Mr. Serge Morattel, already known for his work with Knut, Tantrum and Impure Wilhelmina (and many more).

    B: I remember that the recording of “Obsolete” was really hard for Antoine, because he realized his guitar parts were not complete for that song. So he had to rewrite them just before recording them. Ha ha, that was really funny…at least for us. As we’re all lazy and unprofessional (except Xav maybe), every song we had to record was potentially tedious and risky, but I guess we’re all in Overmars to put ourselves in relative danger, aren’t we?

    In my review of your full-length, I likened you all to Kayo Dot (f.k.a. maudlin of the Well) for several reasons: numerous members, experimental nature, and grandiosity overall. Have you heard the aforementioned, and do you think this is a fair comparison?

    X: Sorry, I don’t know this band, but your description interests me. I'll have to check them out.


    Are you surprised that I haven’t mentioned Donefor up to this point? Is there anything you’d like to say about that project?

    X: No, and I’m ok with that. Most of us used to play in Donefor and at the beginning Overmars was a side-project for them. But I didn’t play in Donefor and I have been in Overmars since the very beginning. It was the same for Antoine who’s not an ex-Donefor.

    B: I used to play drums in Donefor, but the band was marked for death. Too many oversized egos in the same band. I couldn’t deal with that for very long.

    And lastly – along the same lines – the closing words of this interview are yours. Make them good!

    X: Thanks for the interview. I really enjoyed the questions and I never know how to close an interview, sorry!

    B: Thank you very much for your interest. Please, feel free to get in touch with us through our website to insult us or to tell us sweet things. Thanks again for the really clever and sincere review on the site.

    All photographs courtesy of official websites.

    UltimateMetal’s Review of Overmars – Affliction, Endocrine…Vertigo
    Official Overmars Website
    Official Candlelight Records Website
  2. MichelleLBC

    MichelleLBC New Metal Member

    Oct 22, 2008
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  3. mr_patate

    mr_patate New Metal Member

    Mar 31, 2012
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    ah ah OVERMARS, they from my town LYON, I saw this band in show to time. But now the band is dead. Xavier quits the band of there tour in usa, he play in black metal band now called NEIGE MORTE in english DEAD SNOW !

    I took a photo of bass player of OVERMARS in show !

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