is a new interview with Raul owner of the great metal
label "Memento Mori" that specializes in releasing obscure
death and some old-school doom cd's and also re-releasing some
obscure out of print early releases from various bands around
the world so defintly give this a read and check out this
awesome label today
Interview with Raul owner of Memento Mori Productions done by Patrick
1. Hello Raúl, thank you for taking the time to fill out this interview. Please introduce yourself to the readers...
there, Patrick. Thanks for this chance to talk about Memento Mori a
bit. My name's Raúl, I'm a handsome 43 year-old man with a grey-ish
beard and cool tattoos, and I run a humble underground label/mailorder
called Memento Mori along with my partner, Marian, who takes care of
everything logistics, and the invaluable aid of our four kitties. I used
to growl for a couple of bands in the far past, but it's been so long
since those days that it feels like it was somebody else's life instead
of my own life, haha.
2. When did you first discover
Metal music? Who were some of the first bands you listened to? Who are
some of your current favourites?
My father used to play this
"best of" type of tape on the car's stereo that featured lots of songs
and it was a few of them by bands such as Kiss, The Ramones, AC/DC and
Status Quo that I liked the most. Back then I was some 9-10 years old
and I had never heard about terms like Heavy Metal, Hard-Rock or
Punk-Rock, so I guess it was not until a year later that I properly
learnt about Heavy Metal as a music genre, via other bands such as Iron
Maiden, Metallica, Accept, Tokyo Blade, Helix, Venom, Twisted Sister,
Black Sabbath, W.A.S.P., Judas Priest and tons more. As for favourite
bands, I don't feel like I'm loyal to any single band. I'm not the kind
of music fan that becomes a blind follower of a band's entire body of
work. It's especifical albums that I'm a diehard fan of. Most times it's
only about the first few albums of a band that I really dig and don't
really give a damn about the rest of their discography for whatever
3. When did you decide to start the label Memento Mori? How did you come up with the name for the label?
all started like a mere mailorder back in early 2010, but it was such
an easy and boring thing to do that I decided to raise the ante and
mutate it onto a label / mailorder shortly after. Complication is a
beautiful thing, I guess. The name for the label came up naturally as
one of my life's motto is the old Latin saying that goes "carpe diem,
memento mori". "Carpe diem" didn't sound Death Metal enough, so I went
for the second part of the saying: "remember you're gonna die". Now
that's definitely Death Metal, aye? Also, it's pretty suitable for a
label that especializes in that thing they call "old school Death
Metal", you know, slow/mid paced heavy Death Metal with the ocassional
fast part and a rotting atmosphere. That's the kind of stuff that I grew
and fell in love with 25+ years ago.
4. Raúl, do you
have any advice for anyone who might be thinking of starting their own
label? What do you look for when signing and releasing a band?
only legit advice that I could offer is, whatever you do, do it well. I
mean, passion is not enough as there's plenty of 3rd parties that might
eventually get affected by your endeavours. Yes, throw all your heart
into it, but do throw in your brain as well. You don't need to be a
professional to act like one, and responsibility is something that
should always be an essential part of your modus operandi. Other than
that, good luck!
What I look for when signing a band... The main
factor is, the bands must be into the old-flavoured brand of extreme
Metal (most especially Death Metal, Doom Metal and anything in between)
that I grew up with. I tolerate a wee bit of technicality and/or
experimentation thrown in for good measure, but riffs must prevail and
the songs must have a soul. Otherwise I'm not interested. I tend to be
extremely conservative regarding the kind of extreme music that I like
and release. Not really interested in shreds, wanking fests and a
zillion notes/odd tempo signatures per minute. I leave all that fuzz for
those that actually regard music as a science. I for one regard music
as a vehicle for emotions: count me out if it doesn't touch me, whether
it's Metal or any other music genre. Other than that, I want to work
with humble, down to earth people whose goal is far from becoming the
new underground hype.
5. Do you run/work on the label by yourself or do you have some friends who help you out?
me and Marian, as stated above. Besides her, I usually rely on a couple
of friends when it comes to taking care of graphic stuff such as flyers
/ ads / layout because I'm a computer caveman that can hardly use
Microsoft Paint, hehe.
6. What styles of Metal do you
release? Are you currently looking for new bands to sign and release or
is Memento Mori's roster filled up for now?
was partially answered above, but I may add that I wouldn't mind
putting out a full-on Thrash Metal album. I could do that any day given
if/when I find a band that would really grab me by the balls. In fact I
already found a couple of bands whose music I really dig, but they both
had a release deal with some other label, so nothing happened in the
I'm always on the hunt for new, up and coming bands to support
via Memento Mori. But the handicap is timing because I like to plan the
releases way ahead of time. This is the reason why it didn't work out
with some bands, as they needed an immediate, or relatively fast,
release but I just couldn't offer them such thing. Our schedule is
usually busy about a year in advance. Right now, our 2016 schedule is
full and I just started planning the 2017 releases.
7. What are your current releases? Are there any new releases that the Metal fans should watch out for?
put out 43 releases so far. And it'll be 46 of them by the time this
interview is published. The most recent ones are the repress of the
BURIAL - Relinquished Souls reissue CD, the COFFINCRAFT - In Eerie
Slumber CD and the PRAISE THE FLAME - Manifest Rebellion CD. October
31st is the release date for our next three releases: ALDEBARAN - …From
Forgotten Tombs I & II CD, DEMENTIA 13 - Ways of Enclosure CD and
ABYSSUS - Into the Abyss CD. You can learn about all those releases by
taking a look at www.memento-mori.esRegarding the future, we've already
gone public about some of the 2016 releases, such as an especial repress
of the DELIRIUM - Zzooouhh CD (this time as a 2CD featuring demos and a
full 1991 show) that we put out back in 2011, a demos compilation CD of
the old Dutch band PYATHROSIS, and the debut full-length CD's from very
promising bands like THE FOG (Germany), GORGOSAUR (Sweden), TORTURE
RACK (U.S.A.), CARNAL TOMB (Germany) and KURNUGIA (U.S.A.). There's more
releases to be announced, so stay tuned
current bands you have re-released some classic releases from various
underground bands. When did you get the idea to do this? If you had the
chance, are there any older bands and releases you would like to release
I always thought it's good to remember the past
and give people the chance to own and enjoy a physical copy of something
that was released many years ago without spending obscene amounts of
cash for a 2nd hand 1st press copy. That's why I thought of putting out
some reissues from the very beginning. However, I do believe that the
whole thing's getting out of hand in recent times. Reissues are flooding
the market, including stuff that doesn't really deserve the reissue
treatment in my humble opinion, and there's tons of people out there
that only purchase reissues just because it's old stuff that you "must"
own and collect, stuff that they never heard of (even most of us,
veterans, didn't before the internet era) but they feel like they "have
to" have it because, well, because it's old and therefore so damn great,
you know. That's something that leaves little room for new bands and
current releases to get the attention and support that I think they
deserve. Soon there'll barely be any more worthy old stuff to undig. And
then what? I do believe it's healthier for us all to support current
bands so we can perpetuate this underground thing. And it must be done
now instead of waiting for the day most of them will become "hideous
gems that need a reissue" in 20 years time. Thus said, yeah, there's a
few old releases/recordings that I'd like to reissue. But that's not my
#1 priority even though I'm well aware of the fact that they'd sell much
better than a current release. I'm more focused on pushing new acts no
9. Raúl, you live in the great country of Spain. What is your opinion of Spain's Metal scene?
far as I'm concerned, the current Spanish scene is packed with great
bands. They're better musicians, they're more focused and they can
certainly display pretty much the same rotten feeling than the bands we
had in the past did. I'll definitely keep on pushing and supporting as
many of them as I can through Memento Mori. Other than that, we suffer
from the same bullshit that you may find in almost any other part of the
world: big-mouthed people that claim to be supportive when in fact they
support nothing, trendies, liars, scammers, egomaniac imbeciles, stupid
internet warriors of all kind, people that spend large sums of cash on
pretty t-shirts to show off instead of spending it on gigs or music...
Same shit, different country. Also, most proactive people are around or
over 40 years old and you can't really foresee a generational relief.
Not sure what the future holds for us. We'll see.
10. Who are some of your all-time favourite bands from Spain? Are there any new bands you feel the readers should check out?
of my all-time favourite bands from Spain don't even belong in the
Metal scene, so excluding those (I don't think it'd be of any interest
for your readers to name drop them), I'd definitely say Barón Rojo is my
favourite Spanish band ever. Also Leño and the early albums by
Barricada, if we expand the range a bit and include Rock / Hard-Rock
bands as well. And of course some underground extreme Metal bands too,
be them old (Obscure, In Torment, Suffocation / Intoxication, Feretrum,
Human Waste, Gutural...) or current (Ataraxy, Oniricous, Bokluk,
Graveyard, Decapitated Christ, Mass Burial and projects such as Necroven
11. In your opinion, what is the best and worst thing about the underground scene, and what does underground Metal mean to you?
me, underground (extreme) Metal is more about a modus operandi, the way
you do things and why you do them, more than it is just about music.
Music is of course relevant, but there must be something else to it in
order to be properly called underground or else it'd become just another
product to be marketed. The best thing about the underground scene is
to get in touch with other people whose passion for this tiny world of
ours is the same that I feel. The worst thing is, regardless how
especial some people might feel just because they listen to underground
music, any underground scene is a mere reflection of society / mankind.
That simple sentence should say a lot.
12. Well Raúl, we have reached the end of the interview. Do you have any final words for the readers?
I'd like to thank you again for this interview. I hope it was worth the
wait, mate. And to the readers, feel free to visit www.memento-mories
(and/or go like www.facebook.com/memento.mori.label) if you want to be
updated on our activities as a label and mailorder. Alternatively, you
can also send e-mail to email@example.com and request to be added
to our mailing list. Cheers to all. In Death, In Doom...