DxR : As I’m talking to you Gabi, and as you seem to be the name that rings out in Barcelona, how does it feel, after all these years, to still be playing in a hardcore band ? Do you still feel like a kid ? What do you think of this thing the drummer of CODE ORANGE (formerly named CODE ORANGE KIDS) said once : ” We remove the Kids from our band name because we don’t feel like kids anymore” ?
Gabi : Well, I’ve been involved in hardcore for some time now but to be honest I haven’t been in a lot of bands. Actually only 3. First one played like 3 shows, maybe, in total. Second one played like 20 and I don’t think it lasted more than a year since guitar player moved to Canada. Appraise has been around for about 4 years now. How I feel? I feel great. Still really young at heart. My passion is way bigger nowadays than my “early days” in hardcore. I feel blessed to play with some of my best friends, do things that we love and have a good time all in all, according with our stands in life.
Regarding to CODE ORANGE. Well, if they feel more comfortable that way, I am totally cool with that.
DxR : From the first show you ever witnessed to now on, what kind of difference can you make? How do you feel about Hardcore and what’s around nowadays ?
G : Well, it depends how you want live it. I feel more or less the same, because the kind of shows that I go are the same than I used to go back in the day. Nothing really changed. Well, there is more gossip on internet and more “life” online than before. That’s for sure.
What I am trying to say, if you don’t like how the shows or hardcore in general are right now. It’s fine. I can get that. Sometimes I feel that way too. But you can complaint and do nothing or actually do something according to your ideals. More people involved, more fun, more variety and way better.
One thing that I miss, not only in hardcore, is how we were finding out about bands. We didn’t have the internet (well, we had it but way more limited than now). Think about how it has changed in the last 10 years. I remember people borrowing records, tapes, exchanging compilation tapes that you were doing for a friend, etc etc… now, when you listened about a new band, you just type the name on google and have the whole catalogue. But, hey, life is about evolution, things are this way now! No complaints!
DxR : What would be your answer to the people saying hardcore is dead since a long time ? Why are you trying to keep it alive? Do you feel it’s harder than you previously thought ?
G : Actually, it’s kind of funny. I met a friend, sometime ago, that used to go to shows and he mentioned that it was too sad that hardcore is dead. For a second, I didn’t know what to say and at the end, I decided to not really anything. I understand that some people change tastes and priorities and I am totally fine with that. But If I change my priorities, nothing is diying… maybe just hardcore is dying in that individual and it’s not a drama. It’s just how that person feels.
I am not trying to keep nothing alive. It’s alive itself. I’m just a small part of it. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less.
DxR : APPRAISE Put out more or less one album per year, and if I’m correct doesn’t tour that much (or I’m not catching it, so correct me if I’m wrong). Is it life who keep you all busy or it’s the way you saw the band evolving? What are you all doing for a living?
G : Appraise put out a demo on 2012. Then a 7” on 2013 and May 2014 did a full length. Right now we are going to record a new 7” which it will be out on Refuse Records (as usual) and CKUD.
We don’t really have any schedule to record something once a year. If it happened that way, it was pure coincidence.
I don’t know what your idea of not touring much, but I think we have done a quite few tours that I’ve never thought we would do it. The last year has been really busy playing a lot. It has been super fun. We toured two times Europe (one on our own and the second time a part ourselves and the second leg of the tour with Coke Bust and Beyond Pink on Scandinavia), We played Fluff fest too, We have done weekends in Madrid, South Spain, Canary Island, UK among others cities in Spain, plus all the local shows
In 2013, we made it to South America for 3 weeks and we are going back in March again. It’s something that everyone in the band is looking forward to!
Last year, we slowed down a bit to make new songs. But now we are facing to record them and play as much as we can. We had a lineup changes too and we had to get tight again but I think it’s been really good for the band to have Sergi with us, since he is bringing a fresh air to the band. You’ll notice on the new songs J. I don’t know how long is going to last Appraise, but we are not done yet. It’s more to come.
– Joan (guitar player) – He is the process of opening his own tattoo studio and work there.
– Eric (drummer) – He works in a music store and professional photographer.
– Matt (guitar player) – He teaches English and he is doing a workshop to repair guitars
– Sergi (bass) – He just finished his studies and currently looking for a job about designer.
– Gabi (vocals) – I work on a wholesale travel tour operator.
DxR : What is CKUD ? Is it a crew or something? Why is it so much linked to APPRAISE?
G : CKUD is just a name that I used to do shows, sometimes release a record and once a year we do a weekend of shows in Barcelona (with the help of a lot of people). It’s not a crew. Never has been, never will. I developed some kind of “dislike” to “crews”. I mean, it can be cool but sometimes can exclude other people. I don’t feel comfortable with that.
Maybe it’s linked to Appraise because I co-release the lp with Refuse Records.
DxR : Three years after your first demo, are you still proud of this project? Did you have any expectations for APPRAISE at first? Any let down?
G : I am totally proud of Appraise. For sure, some mistakes and we could have done things better, but that’s life. You fail, you fix it, and you improved. If we don’t do anything, sure, we won’t fail.
Appraise just had the expectation of recording a few songs and play some local shows. We didn’t were thinking about doing a 7”. It just happened when I friend he would like to press into a vinyl. Everything happened really natural. Same with tours. We love to be on tour. It’s like your band get in shape, has new goals and you feel some much more alive.
DxR : What’s in store for APPRAISE for the times to come ?
G : We are going to record the new 7”. We will tour South America in March / April. We are playing the Basque Country in a few weeks too. And then, there has been a talk of going to tour Europe again.
We dream about touring Asia and the States at some point. Who knows! Maybe someday!
DxR : In 2012 you were saying there wasn’t much new kids or younger people involved in your scene. Did it change in good or bad ?
G : It changed for a better. There a few new kids. Doing bands and stuff. My favourites are Constrict. Really heavy music but if you love Strife, Strain and Integrity. That’s your band. Super proud of them: http://www.constrict.bandcamp.com/
And the same for Golem: http://www.xgolemx.bandcamp.com/
DxR : Considering the political situation in Spain, would you say it’s hard to book shows/make an alternative scene such as this one survive properly ? Is it more a struggle than when you started ?
G : Well, I think it’s just become more a weekender thing. It’s really hard to get shows during the weekend. But all in all, it will survived for sure! There are people enough to take good care of it.
DxR : Are you -or someone in the band- skating ? From my point of view, Barcelona is highly reknowned for that, but would you say it has, nowadays, any links with the local hardcore scene?
G : I used to skate (not that great haha). I think there are some skaters in hardcore, not as much as before thought.
DxR : If one day your kid is interested in Hardcore Punk, what would be the first records you would offer to you kid?
G : Haha, considering true that I have a kid, I would def. play Minor Threath, YOT, GB, Instead, Bold, Uniform Choice + all the classics I guess.
DxR : What do you think about the YOT reunion happening in april?
G : Well, it doesn’t appeal to me as much as before. Of course, I have my opinions but who I am to say what people should do or not. I am not against reunions. But I grew up thinking (and still do) that hardcore is a place where money has no importance and I stand to that. I 100% about playing for fun, for a good reason, etc… I don’t refer particularly about YOT because I don’t know how they are dealing this whole issue, but the one that I lived closer, it was more a “Rock” thing than hardcore. It depends what it means to you.
If we talk about this line-up… The best YOT line up, responsible for the “We are not in this alone”. To me, that’s most genuine expression of Hardcore and Straight Edge.
DxR : Would rather be blind but spit fire or be eaten alive by insect while being immortal?
G : Tough one, I have a full lifetime to think about it!
Thanks for the interview. Check out appraise on: www.appraise.bandcamp.com
And Check Refuse Records and CKUD to know about us.