Interview for Pro-Rock magazine – full version

  1. Tell me how the idea of Metal Force has been born?

 

Stoycho: It all began at the second day of Keep it True Festival in Germany this year (2011). This was our serial visit there and I already had an idea how the metal clubs in Spain, Germany, Greece, Mexico and etc. had their own vision and etiquette in a very simple way – only with a patch and a huge flag straight somewhere at the festival’s area. This has impressed me for some years ago. Many of the members of these clubs are my friends and I asked them about the organization, goals of the clubs, results and etc. And just at that moment, while we were drinking a glass of „fire- water” for breakfast, I told Evgeny: Are we making the club? His answer was: We making it, dude! And so things go. First I shared the idea to our closest friends and slowly the wheel turned till ultimately we have a court decision and an official club since August this year (2011).

 

  1. What do you think will change the appearance of Metal Force in Bulgarian metal society?

 

Stoycho: Personally I am not going to change anything or anyone. We have our goals and we are going to chase them till they are realized. It’s a kind of private party and it’s not burdening anyone in any way in the so called Bulgarian metal society. Just strong emotions for the members.

 

Indianeca: I believe we will make people (not all of them, of course) understand, that life is not just „food, shit and money”.There are thousands of worthy causes and one of them is Metal Force.

 

  1. In the manifest about the creating of the club you are emphasizing the integration of the Bulgarian metal society. Do you think this could be possible, given that here in Bulgaria we most like to divide?

 

Silver: Extremely relevant issue, making reference to the Bulgarian national psychology, to our national psychology. Essentially:

Yes, our efforts seek to unite the representatives of Bulgarian metal society. No, we don’t think we can make it happen 100%. But that is not strange or bad. We neither can nor want to represent all the metalheads in Bulgaria. Like all things, so regarding to metal music and metal philosophy, the viewpoints of the different people could and it is normally to be different. Moreover, there are people, who don’t want to be a part of any society, even if it is metal.

 

Indianeca: Yes, society likes to divide, but I think our club will bring together people, who want to do something worthwhile in life as we do.

 

Stoycho: Exactly, unity. That is the way for us to be a force. The force, which drive us to achieve our goals. United and creative. Currently, my observation is that yes- unity can be achieved in Bulgaria. People, who look with suspicion on our idea, will not join. These who learned about us did it without hesitating. Exactly that is the power and the way people with similar views on metal to create a society, and in fact that is not anything new under the sun.

 

  1. At the beginning you numbered 32 persons. What are the trends now? Is there a permanent interest in joining?

 

Stoycho: Recently we accepted new members. Soon we will consider even more applications. For me things are going better than expected.

  1. How is happening the enrolling in the club? Are there any age requirements? What will be the monthly membership fee?

 

Stoycho: A request, sent to our e-mail metal_force_bulgaria@yahoo.com is enough. Everyone gets documentation to reed. If you are ok with our terms and Statutes, you just send an application and we consider. We don’t accept people under 18, but that doesn’t mean they are rejected. If they want to support us in some way, they are welcome to any show and other event as long as their presence is legal. Starting fee for membership is 20 Leva (EUR 10, -) and than 10 lv. (EUR 5,-) every month. The single first payment includes the first monthly fee and the rest we use as intended.

 

  1. And how will you deal with people who first join and than stop to pay their dues? It is well known that Bulgarians prefer not to give any money.

 

Stoycho: We debated long and decided as follows: for non-payment of dues for two consecutive months a member is submitted for exclusion from the Club.

 

  1. Do you have links with similar clubs in Europe and are you planning any joint events or something?

 

Stoycho: We are communicating with several clubs from Spain and Germany and here my especially thanks to Metal Bats HMC, Heavy Metal Espectros HMC, Beer & Hammers HMC. Exactly on their experience we drew information.

And something from the kitchen”: Axecutor and Degradat are the first Bulgarian metal bands who came into the club. As we clearly used to say: Bulgarian metal must be developed and promoted!

Clearly, the idea is not innovative, but is the first one carried in Bulgaria and we are proud with that.

 

  1. Are you going to make monthly general meetings and how are you going to deal with issues concerning the metal club?

 

Silver: As already announced to the media, in its legal nature Metal Force is a non-profit legal entity for activities in compliance with the Law for non-profit legal entities. Being that, it is a subject to the rules of law and adopted by us also approved by the court Statute. In that sense, the General Assembly of Metal Force is the supreme body of the Association, which consists of all its members. The General Assembly is convened at the initiative of the Board of the Association or at the request of one third of its members. All the most important issues are decided by the members of the club by voting with majority.

 

  1. Are there any leaders, at example the founders, whose opinion is central to decision making?

 

Stoycho: Each one of us is a leader and everyone is entitled to propose an idea to be discussed and voted and respectively realized. We the founders of course- the people, who nailed the start, are the organizers of most of the events and our proposals are considered with a great interest. For that I thank to all members for trusting us.

 

  1. You did a concert of Nema Labavo and Axecutor. Do you think it was successful?

 

Stoycho: There was a great interest. There were both club members and guests and friends who came to see the bands and to learn more about us as a club. It was a great show, the result was cool party, neck ache, swollen livers and consuming of all the alcohol in the bar and someone maybe got laid, ha-ha-ha. In a nutshell: According to the rules!

 

  1. Incidentally, it coincided with the rescheduled date for the show of DECAPITATED. Did this reflect in any way on the attendance of your show, although it was free?

 

Stoycho: If there was any impact in any way, it was that by the first band Nema Labavo there were less people, but right after their great start, fans from the concert of Decapitated joined for Axecutor. Fans count is not important for this kind of concerts. 100 fanatically radical metal warriors is better than 10 000 with new shirts, bought specially for the show and flip-flops for 2 lv. from the nearby open market.

 

  1. What are the plans about other concerts? Will all of them be free, based on that the club is a non-profit organization?

 

Silver: Our main intention is to invite metal bands belonging to the so-called metal underground. I mean both older and new bands, that due to bad coincidence or deliberately are not among the most famous and popular metal bands. Many of these old and new underground metal bands, which sometimes have only one single album, are extremely valuable. They are not interesting for the Bulgarian promoters, because they seek commercial success (otherwise cannot exist). We, Metal Force, don’t seek to profit, because we are not a company, we are a non-profit entity. Of course, we would not have refused to realize a concert of famous and extremely popular metal bands, but with the financial recourses we have, at least for now this could not happen.

Regarding to your question if all of our events will be free, the answer is no. This is because getting a band from Italy, Germany or the U.S.A. for example is not associated with low costs. Band fee, travel expenses, hotel, catering. Available funds of the club, which has been collected from membership dues, have not a chance to cover these expenses in any case. This requires they to be accumulated from the sale of tickets, which certainly will not reimburse costs incurred, but will take at least some of them. We have this right according to the law of legal non-profit. Indeed, non-profit organizations could not distribute profits, but according to the Law they could generate revenue by additional activity, when it is connected to the main activity for which they are registered and if they are using the revenue to achieve the objectives set out in the Statute or in the Constitutive Act.

 

  1. Is there a developed metal culture in Bulgaria, provided that on the Bulgarian metal stage mostly when you have sold over 100 copies, it is a great success?

 

Silver: There has been a metal subculture in Bulgaria since early 80s of the last century. During the communist regime they used to call us informal. Otherwise, I think that this question should be considered from two sides:

On the one hand, there is in Bulgaria a very strong metal presence as metal fans. The first metal generation was born in the late 60s and early 70s of XX century. I am a part of the second. Then came third and four generation and so it has come to the metalheads, who were born in early 90s. This metal community as a whole is characterized by continuity, aggressive presence and total support of European and international metal bands. And that is not only my opinion. This is found out by bands like Manowar, Sodom, Pungent Stench, Accept, Moonspell, Exciter, Grave Digger etc.

On the other hand, the Bulgarian metal scene as existing and acting bands, which are issuing albums, concerts etc…is not in a prosperous situation. This is not surprising, because being not a big country (currently), Bulgaria is not a large music market.

It should be noted, that a significant part of this otherwise small market, is occupied by chalga(pseudo folk music of the Balkans, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chalga ) and other gipsy-oriental shit.

Concerning the possible implementations of Bulgarian heavy metal bands in Western Europe and the U.S. it is difficult and unlikely, because this market is over saturated with lots of very high quality hard rock, heavy metal, thrash and etc. bands.

Actually now I found out, that your question has a third aspect as well. The Bulgarian metal scene does not have the required dose of mutual solidarity. I mean, there is the Syndrome of the Balkansand that is intruding it to be united and hence more powerful.

 

Indianeca: And what is metal culture? Headbangers are individuals with different interests, united by metal music, not by a utopian cause. Earning money from sales in Bulgaria? Ha-ha-ha!!!

 

  1. There have been criticisms, that the vision of the club is too metal. Could people with no metal image be members of the club?

 

Silver: Vision is metal and will become even more metal. Do not forget, that we are the Praetorian Guard of metal - heavy metal elite! Metallica have said that (long before playing grunge and melody) No Life `Till Leather. Every society has a dress code and every army has a uniform.

Otherwise, of course, supporters who don’t have such radical metal image may be club members too. But if they like this music, believe in the ideas of the organization and agree with the postulate of the Statute.

 

Indianeca: Too metal? I dress as I want and if my style is like 20 years ago that is not bothering me at all. For me, a man who dresses to appeal to his friends or because something is modern, has no style but lot of complexes. For 15 years, wearing torn and frayed jeans was unacceptable and was a measure for a strange person and now that is FASHION. I will always be the black sheep. And yes, everyone who believes that is his cause can become a member of Metal Force, no matter how he is dressed like.

 

Stoycho: I would like to say only that I am a metalhead to the bone, which means something very simple – a way of life. Ha, namely – listening to metal music and buying metal attributes, wearing long hear, elastic jeans, drinking lots of alcohol and not practicing any sports.

 

  1. Tell us something about the founders of Metal Force. What is your age, what are you doing, how did you go mad about metal, which is the greatest metal album ever?

 

Stoycho: I am from Kazanluk, 29 years old. I work with visual effects and support metal. I am living in Sofia since 11 years and I am a part of metal elite, the establishment of which I contributed. In my spare time, when I have such, I am creeping over the metal bars in Sofia and Thessaloniki and I look cruel, because the metal requires this.

Otherwise, I started my metal career with Iron Maiden, Mercyful Fate and Blind Guardion, first heard as names from older metal brothers or just stored in my brain from any headbanger`s T-shirt, walking through the streets of Kazanluk with a beer in his hand. This was followed by tape recording or coming to metal shops in Sofia and Stara Zagora, finding out, zombing and complete surrendering to the magic. Inpatient I was waiting for the paint hours in 6th class and I was praying the teacher to give us a free theme. If this happened, we both with my friend July started to draw sculls, snakes, guitars, castles, swords, gore. After that we usually had problems with school administration, which has in those years very hardened worths- a legacy of a dark past. But Metal has won! So time has passed, I grow up, my hair got long and also the list of bands I listen to. I like old classics: Motorhead, Saxon, Iron Maiden, Twisted Sister, Mercyful Fate, Bathory

such as 80`s thrash like Sodom, Destruction, Tankard, Testament, Protector, Razor, Iron Angel and the new forces that emerged from the bowels of the earth in recent years like Nocturnal, Witchburner, Midnight, Cruel Force, Omega, Antichrist, which I highly recommend. So, I could not respond categorically which is my favorite album. I would list three mandatory classics: Mercyful Fate- Don’t Break the Oath”, Venom - Black Metal, Slayer – Show no Mercy”.

 

Indianeca: I am Evgeny Indianeca (The Indian), 29 years old. I am working in movie- and TV-industry. I am playing bass and guitar for fun! In 1995 I watched to the movie Mortal Combat and I liked the soundtrack very much. Then I asked where M.A.V.O. is??? (Monsters and Villains Organization, Metal Shop in Sofia) and I bought Fear Factory- Demanufacture and Atrocity-Werk 80. So it all began.

 

Silver: I am a Bulgarian from Sofia, 38 years old. I have listened to metal since 1985. I am working, because work makes us free. In my spare time I listen to metal, bang my head and ramble. I love to read: fiction, history and theology. From time to time I booze with Rakia (Bulgarian strong alcoholic drink)

I think that the greatest metal album ever is named „Louder than Hell”, recorded in 1996 by the metal kings Manowar. There is incredible combination of aggression, melody and warrior metal spirit in it. Lyrics are strictly Metal stereotiped and propaganda, illustrating theirs and my own conception about heavy metal as music, movement and philosophy.

 

16.Some final words to the readers of Pro-Rock ?

 

Stoycho: If you believe in metal, support it. And that means by going to concerts, buying tapes and CDs of the bands you like from their official stand and official record company. And don’t forget: bang your fucking head!

 

Silver: Heavy metal has a past, a present and a future. It doesn’t have only one thing – alternative!

 

Indianeca: Let Metal force be with you!