EXCRUCIATION is hands down the missing name to complete the unholy trinity that forged the best of Swiss 80s Thrash Metal… easy to realize that the other 2 are HELLHAMMER and MESSIAH. FOAD Records has put together a special edition double LP, a deadly retrospective nightmare into the band’s rawest and earliest recording. You can purchase a copy using the Buy Now button below:
To celebrate the release, Marco FOAD reached original – and still active – member Eugenio Maccariello, who has sung for this Swiss powerhouse of Thrash since the very beginning… discover some of the great stories hidden in the vaults of Swiss 80s metal!!!
The reissue of your wonderful “The Last Judgment” MLP and “First Assault” demo is finally out in a gatefold double LP version. What do you remember from those times? Tell us something about Excruciation in the ’80s …
Well you know, who is remembering the 80s today did not live them… Seriously, it has been a nice time: in that period many new things have come out in our music genre. New stuff, something people had never heard before. It was the birth of a scene which we felt like a family, with relatives scattered all around the world… I remember that releasing a tape with your music, and hearing the positive reactions from the people, to me was much more satisfactory than releasing a CD today.
In those years, Switzerland seems to have bred very great bands. I am referring to the likes of Hellhammer, Celtic Frost, Messiah, Coroner, Lunacy, and obviously you, Excruciation! What ties did you have with the other Swiss bands from that era? I remember a “high quality” scene made up of excellent bands, labels (I would like to remember Chainsaw Murder records), fanzines, radio shows etc. Also, who chose the name Excruciation for your band?
There was a good friendship and a great deal of respect between the bands, especially with Coroner, Lunacy and Exxor, as they all came from Zurich. We spent time together almost daily at our favorite bar. But we also had good relationships with Messiah, Samael, Alastis, Fear of God etc., it was a perennial party. Regarding the radio program, I think you refer to the Speed-Airplay: it was choked full of new Hardcore and Metal, and each episode could be bought on tape. Good times!
Our moniker was proposed by Martin Ain of Hellhammer / Celtic Frost… I guess we couldn’t just tell him NO, ahahha…
In the previous question I remembered one of the most interesting labels of the extreme metal scene of the ’80s: Chainsaw Murder. in addition to your “The Last Judgment”, they also produced the first two LPs of Messiah, the 7 “of the fabulous Pentagram (Chile) and Calhoun Conquer. Do you have any story about this wonderful label and its founder Marco Suremann? Is it true that without him Hellhammer (and consequently Celtic Frost) probably would not have kept playing due to economic problems?
Sure, he has not only helped Hellhammer, if I remember correctly he actually bought their drumset… he never played it, he just bought it for them and helped them where he could. I think Hellhammer would have continued anyways, maybe with a substantial delay. To me Marco was one of the most important people in the Swiss scene: he knew many people all over the world and he has helped spreading the voice of the Swiss bands. Even if he was a record label manager, he was also working as a roadie and a driver for us, Messiah and many other bands.
Excruciation as a band has been running since the early to mid 80s. You are still active and determined even after all those years. Now, your style leans more towards Doom Metal, but judging from your fans’ reaction, “old school” Excruciation seems to be everyone’s favorite. How do you explain it?
Nostalgia? I am also seeing that a new young scene is growing here in Switzerland: they are very loyal to the 80s stuff. Perhaps this happens because it was sincere music played with great passion, not because a band wanted to get rich… they just felt it. Today, everyone who can play a guitar and release a CD can put it on the web, and the music itself is losing its real value. Do not misunderstand me, I think that even today there are real and passionate bands, but you have to look hard to find them.
Eugenio, this question is for you… you have Italian descent (Naples to be exact). After more than 20 years you will come back to Italy for a one-night only appearance at the “Into the Macabre” festival, playing with Necrodeath. On this night, both bands will celebrate the 25 years after the release of their respective masterpieces. How do you feel about that?
Well, for me it’s like coming home! To me, the fact that this reissue comes out in Italy is a very big satisfaction. Although I was born in Switzerland, and my mind perhaps works more like a Swiss, my heart always beats to an Italian rhythm… the Neapolitan! Furthermore, we will get on stage with a band that I love since the very early days (I had a copy of the first Ghostrider demotape!), what can I want more? These are some of the reasons why I keep playing music! Thank you for re-releasing “The Final Judgment” and giving us this opportunity!