Puto Diablo

author PP date 10/06/09

Together with a fellow Danish screamo band Trusted Few, Puto Diablo are trying to create a new kind of music scene in Denmark, one that's strong and one that doesn't consist of just pop rock and indie rock bands like it has for many years now in the past. To achieve that objective they're putting out a new release this week, so I figured it's about time we sit the band in our interview chair and fire up a couple of pointed questions towards what this band is all about and how their next record will sound. Read on to find out more.

RF.net: Hi and thanks for doing this interview. Even though you are a Danish band, I don’t think that the majority of our readers are familiar with Puto Diablo. Could you therefore start off by introducing yourself and perhaps tell us the story of Puto Diablo so far?
Marco: Well next year we have our ten year anniversary, so its kind of a long story, but I’ll try to make it short. We started ten years ago forming a band with members from other groups in Copenhagen. We were all tired of the bands we were playing in at the time, and wanted to start something new and different. We found common ground in the crossover/nu-metal which was a genre not many bands had adopted at the time. After 3 years and 2 demos, we had created a somewhat big buzz in the Danish underground scene, simultaneous with the genre having a boom in DK. But at the same time we no longer were influenced by the genre we were playing, and much more listened to bands like The Used, Taking Back Sunday and UnderOATH. This lead to some writing confusion in the band and ended up with our original drummer leaving the band. It took us half a year trying out new drummers, and when all seemed lost we snatched a drummer and a friend from one of our friend's bands. He proved to match our band 100%, and it sent us in our new melodic metal/rock direction and completely left out our nu-metal writings. Since then we have had to struggle back in the Danish underground scene, where we with our last output “Turning Points And Respirators” finally found connection with a new crowd and got some good attention from the media.

RF.net: How did you decide on the name Puto Diablo – it is in Spanish if I’m not mistaken?
Marco: Hehe yeah, it's Spanish-ish. As far as I have tried to ask around, the word Puto, the male word for hooker, is not found in the Spanish dictionary. The word is most commonly used in South America where it has a meaning for an idiot, I think. The name came early in our days, where we were nameless and had to do an interview with a national Danish news program. I was the one they interviewed and we had nothing planned. So when the reporter asked me it just came from some hidden chamber in my head and I said “Puto Diablo”. I have no clue in the world where the name came from, but we all agreed it sounded cool. We have never laid an deeper meaning to name, nor should anybody else hehe.

RF.net: So you guys were in CB studios earlier this year to record your debut full length album. Can you tell us a little bit about the experience in the studio and how the recording came together? Are you happy with the end result?
Marco: First of all it is not a full length, it’s a mini album with 8 tracks, 5 of them real Puto songs. The experience had its up and downsides. The studio was really great, there was a really great atmosphere about the place, by far the cleanest studio we have recorded in. And the coffee is fucking great. We had, as always, booked too little time for the things we wanted to do. So both guitar and bass we recorded ourselves in studio 2 at CB. We spent a lot of time tracking drums and trying out different amps, because we all wanted to try something different, and not only do the signature CB sound. It worked out very well, but stole a lot of time in the other end. We had some more things planned for the songs, but there just wasn't time for it. The only real negative thing from my point of view is the living arrangement. It's a little crappy 1 room apartment where you sleep 5 guys shoulder by shoulder for a week, and my band snores their lungs out, so I got about 3 hours sleep every night. Maybe its part of the charm being in the studio and maybe I'm just bitching….

RF.net: You recorded the album with Christian Bonde. How was it working with him?
Marco: I think he is very cool. He was good in grasping the type of thing we wanted to do, and that’s the first time anyone has done that. We agreed with him that we had to do something different than the standard sound he was used to making, and the result is amazing I think. He is not the fastest man on planet earth though, but just make sure you remind him of the progress all the time.

RF.net: How about the writing-process? How does a Puto Diablo song come together?
Marco: For us its all about jamming. Someone has a riff or an idea and we just play it and see what comes naturally. We then try out a bunch of different things for the main riff, have some loud discussions almost trashing the track. Then we come back a week later and the song usually comes perfectly together. As for the vocals we rarely have lyrics for them before close to recording time. I put a lot of myself in my lyrics, so I want to be sure we are going to use the track before I write for it. I still write the melody lines etc. before.

RF.net: The new album is called “The Aftermath Of Comprehension”. Can you talk a little bit about the title, why you chose it, and what you are trying to say with it?
Marco: Usually I prefer the listener to draw their own meaning from our songs and lyrics. But there is of course a thought put into it. The last 3 outputs have all had a coherent concept/theme of my mind state in my relationship life, which I ended on our last record. “The Aftermath Of Comprehension” is the lyrical standpoint after my emotional disasters hehe. It's like after all is done what now? I cried my tears and found my existentialistic ground. From a bands point of view it's time to say things like they are, no more being the victim of everything else, no more praise for worthless shit.

RF.net: What are Puto Diablo songs usually about? What are the new songs about?
Marco: The old songs are mostly about negative relation issues. One of my favorite lyrics is the song called “drowning next to you”, describing the feeling of falling in love not knowing if the other half is falling too. The new songs have more diverse themes. “The Business End Of A Shotgun” is a song about the Danish music scene, and mostly pointed towards one band. It's nothing personal, but I'm just so fucking tired of crappy, bland bands, with nothing but a narrative illusion to their success. It’s a issue I could talk for hours about, so I’ll stop here. Another song is called "Here's To Better Days" which is more of a song about us and the lust we still have for this music.

RF.net: Based on my initial listens of the new song you guys have up on Myspace, it sounds like you guys have dropped much of the rap element you had on your earlier demos. Is this true for the rest of the album? If so, what made you decide that way?
Marco: No not really, he (Danni) still raps, but we have evolved a lot the past years, and we are not that influenced by rap/metal bands, and the genre we listen to and the music we write is not for straight rap. It's not something we have decided, but it's more like a natural evolution in our music, and the vocals are dictated by the music. His style, in my opinion, is an angry mix of Beastie Boys meets At The Drive-In.

RF.net: How should we expect the new album overall to sound like?
Marco: That’s always a hard question. It’s a big mixture of many styles and genres. The biggest difference on this record is the focus on Southern rock n roll sound. Not saying we are in that genre, but we can clearly hear the influence of it. There's still some metal parts and breakdowns left here and there, and still focus on the melodic parts. Another new aspect to the record is the use of midi produced interludes. We have 3 interludes on the record that I have made together with a Danish hip hop producer called Es. They are really great and diverse, and give the overall feel more coherency, or not, maybe it will throw some people off. So in short a melodic southern rock n roll metal screamo sound with full throttle painted all over the record.

RF.net: What are your expectations surrounding the debut album? Perhaps getting signed by a label? International tours?
Marco: Expectations is a dangerous thing if they are not fulfilled. But I have great hopes. The first thing I hope for is to be signed by a booking agency and/or a management. These things are just things we are so horrible at, and I would love for professional people to take care of it and take it to another level. I would love to be signed for a record deal, but I have little faith in that happening with a contract that gives us money on our accounts. The music industry is still knocked out by the impact of the mp3 and the battle for the market is so fucking outrageously hard that not many are making money of music any more. I mostly have hope that our new record has an impact on the Danish music scene. That we need both the music to come back to the basics, with quality music and diversity in the mass media, its time for something new and exciting to happen here. Of course we also dream of the great world across the border, but as I said, we need competent people to take care of that.

RF.net: You’ve previously released three EPs. How do you feel about them today?
Marco: I'm still damn proud of our last 2 efforts, they are all great songs and still songs that are on our setlist. I'm also proud of the concepts we managed to put on them. The new is not in the same sense as conceptual as them, but in full intention. The third "To Choke In Thin Air” is a mixed pleasure. There are great things on there, but you can clearly hear that we had not found ourselves yet. We actually have made 2 eps before that, but they are not anything we want to be affiliated with anymore, so we don’t speak of them.

RF.net: I’ve had the chance of seeing you guys live and you put up a lively and energetic liveshow. In your opinion, what makes for a perfect Puto Diablo show?
Marco: A perfect show for us Is having an energetic crowd that truly digs the show. Our philosophy for a great live performance is that music and performance are coherent. We make energetic music therefore we are energetic. The most important thing for a band playing live is feeling the song and act upon that emotion. If you feel a breakdown riff coming up you need to break your neck for that shit, not by showmanship, but because you can't help it. People easily see through bands that play music without having the gut to also perform the emotions of the music. The focus in a Puto show is not to play the music perfectly, but to show the people how you act out your music, give it hell. Great live bands in that sense are Deftones and Dillinger Escape Plan, they really put an effort in giving it all on stage, which then tears on the music.

RF.net: Who have been some of the biggest influences and inspirations for Puto Diablo?
Marco: The bands we have found common excitement for are: Deftones, Underoath, Blindside, He Is Legend, Every Time I Die, The Used, 36 Crazyfists, Circa Survive and Refused. Actually we always listen to “New Noise” by Refused before a show to get us pumped up.

RF.net: What do you think about the Danish music scene?
Marco: Don’t get me started. I hate it, and I hate that there is so much crap getting attention and so much great potential rotting in the rehearsal rooms around Denmark. I have been fighting for many year to create a new scene in Denmark, and failed miserably. Mostly because bands break up all the time because of the lack of success. The sky is starting to look bright with many bands showing massive potential to create a strong scene in DK. And we want to be a major part of that, and we need to work together with bands to create a real stronghold. The song “Here’s To Better Days” features our friends from Trusted Few on gang vocals and is our anthem for the new scene in DK where there are lot of bands with really great talent and potential, just look at them: Trusted Few, Siamese Fighting Fish, Fall From Grace, sjael, Up Up Down… and so on. It's time we stand together so we can create the necessary buzz, so the majority dares to listen to other rock bands than Volbeat, Nephew and The Dreams.

RF.net: That’s all the questions from me, thanks for taking the time to answer them. Good luck with the new album! Any finishing words to your fans or the readers?
Marco: We would like to thank Rockfreaks.net for the attention you are giving us and other danish bands. And I really love your site, its honestly my number 1 source for music news. Oh yeah and remember our release party on the rock - 12. June.

For free entry write your name to this mail: putomaxx@hotmail.com

Konnichiwa bitches – Marco from Puto Diablo

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