Review & Interview

2002
SALEM - Collective Demise (system Shock/KMG)

CD REVIEW

with "Collective Demise" acknowledges one the presenting volume from Israel loudly.
Salem were already based into the 80ern and always tried to pull their thing through even if due to their origin were certainly not so completely simple.
First I must confess that I know only the "Kaddish" album (1994), which pleased me in addition, already quite well.
Now however to the new output, which presents very independent Death Metal mixed with various influences.
On this album really a lot gives to discover: many melodische guitar runs, in which the volume makes their origin clear, easily hectic in addition, straightes Riffing, abwechlungsreiches Drumming, afro Cuban Perkussion, etc..
This mixture sounds very independent and interesting, needs however also a few runs.
I find the singing of Ze'ev, which sounds particularly successful very aggressive and hate-fulfilled.
Also the sound is absolutely professionally - transparency, but simultaneous with the necessary pressure! Which strikes me however on the stomach, is the woman singing emerging in various Songs, which works somehow too touched down and so well into the Songs does not integrate itself - a Song like "act OF waR" became without my opinion after clearly better rueberkommen.
When perhaps regarding the guitar work one could call comparable volume Rotting Christian, otherwise however nil return is with comparisons.
One must sound oneself really best even, since the music is to be described due to the multilayeredness with difficulty.
Me gefaellts somehow...
9/15 January

German
SALEM - Collective Demise (System Shock/KMG)
Mit "Collective Demise" meldet sich eine der Vorzeigebands aus Israel lautstark zur?ck. Salem haben sich bereits in den 80ern gegr?ndet und immer versucht, ihr Ding durchzuziehen, auch wenn das aufgrund ihrer Herkunft bestimmt nicht so ganz einfach war. Vorab muss ich gestehen, dass ich nur das "Kaddish"-Album (1994) kenne, das mir aber auch schon recht gut gefallen hat. Nun aber zum neuen Output, der sehr eigenst?ndigen Death Metal gemischt mit diversen Einfl?ssen pr?sentiert. Auf diesem Album gibt wirklich eine ganze Menge zu entdecken: viele melodische Gitarrenl?ufe, in denen die Band ihre Herkunft deutlich macht, leicht hektisches aber auch straightes Riffing, abwechlungsreiches Drumming, afro-kubanische Perkussion, usw. Diese Mischung klingt sehr eigenst?ndig und interessant, braucht allerdings auch ein paar Durchl?ufe. Besonders gelungen finde ich den Gesang von Ze'ev, der sehr aggressiv und hasserf?llt klingt. Auch der Sound ist absolut professionell - transparent, aber gleichzeitig mit dem n?tigen Druck! Was mir allerdings auf den Magen schl?gt, ist der in diversen Songs auftauchende Frauengesang, der irgendwie zu aufgesetzt wirkt und sich nicht so gut in die Songs integriert - ein Song wie "Act Of War" w?rde ohne meiner Meinung nach deutlich besser r?berkommen. Als vergleichbare Band in Bezug auf die Gitarrenarbeit k?nnte man vielleicht Rotting Christ nennen, ansonsten ist aber bei Vergleichen Fehlanzeige. Muss man sich wirklich am besten selbst anh?ren, da die Musik aufgrund der Vielschichtigkeit schwer zu beschreiben ist. Mir gef?llts irgendwie...
9/15 Jan

INTERVIRW

1. Hi Ze'ev! Please introduce yourself and Salem to our readers?

1. Salem was formed in 1985 and we released 4 albums and a 7" picture LP: "Creating our sins" (December 1992), "Dying embers" (7" picture LP) (April 1994), "Kaddish" (December 1994), were released by Morbid recotds. " A moment of silence" produced by Colin Richardson (October 1998) was released by B.N.E, and Salem's new release: "Collective demise" (September 2002) is the first Salem offering for KMG/ System Shock in Germany. Earlier this year Salem signed a 3-album contract with this well-established label.
Salem played with such known acts such as: Megadeth, Entombed, Rotting Christ, Cancer, Disharmonic Orchestra as well as headlining tours throughout israel. Salem was featured on MTV. europe several times and also on the german show: Viva.
The line-up is: Ze'ev Tananboim - Vocals, Lior mizrahi - Guitar, Michael Goldstein - Bass, Nir Nakav - Drums and Nir Gutraimen who joined us recently - Guitar.
For more information about Salem, you can visit our web site: http://www.salemband.com

2. How do you feel with the new record on your side? Are you satisfied with it?

2. We worked very hard on this CD for 18 months , and we are very satisfied with it, Collective demise" Produced by the band and recorded in D.B. Studios (Drums, Bass, and Guitars) and Noise Studios (Vocals and mix) in Israel to maintain the bombastic production standard set forth with previous release "A Moment of Silence".
"Collective Demise" contains 12 new songs which textually are snapshots of our reality since September 2001 and musically explore new territories; The use of Afro-Cuban Percussion on "Dead Eyes" and "Slave", Arabic darbuka on "Broken Yet United" and "Act of Terror", female vocals on "Coming End of Reason", "Feed on Your Grief", "Act of War" and "Al Taster" and the most sophisticated second guitar harmonies ever submitted to reel.

3. What is the difference to your former releases in your opinion? I think that you are more influenced by different metal styles nowadays - would you agree?

3. "Collective demise" is very aggressive, although it has a lot of melodys and harmonys. I think that "Collective demise" reflects certain adolescence of salem, the fact that it's more aggresive and much faster distinguish it from our previous releases.

4. Tell us something about the songwriting of the new album and in general. Who comes up with the main ideas?

4. Evry member of the band is writing material, and in most cases We are all meeting, listening to it and choosing what we like, eventually we build song, after that we are writing a lyrics to it. When the song is ready, We can change it , so a song is not realy ready until we record it.

5. What are your lyrics all about?

5. In general and conceptual, all the songs in the album are refering to collective demise.
Our lyrics influence by life itself. In Israel it's impossible to ignore the news since it has a direct effect on your daily life and as a result you have songs. It's hard to cope with the fear of being somewrer crowded (like busses, restaurants, or even live shows) without knowing how it will end. The fact that innocent civilians are dying gives you an helplessness feeling. It is difficult for us to see a solution for it right now, but we don't know what tomorrow will bring - therefore we try to keep hoping. 6. How would you describe Salems current situation (in the scene)?

6. Salem allways got goog criticisms, I can't describe our posision in the wide-world metal scene at the present because we didn't released an album for 3 year, You can ask me that question again one year from now.

7. What about the Metal scene in Israel? Are there a lot of bands (please name some) and fans around? You got possibilities to play live and so on?

7. The metal scene in Israel has had its ups and down, new bands come and go all the time. These days the maetal in Israel is growing and a lot of kids listen to metal and support it and come to live shows.. Some good bands are: "Arallu", "Nail-Within", "Lehavoth", "Untropia", "Meleches", "Orphaned Land", hand more.
I try to help bands, I produced several bands like "Arallu", "Azazel" ,"Aztec", "Betrayer" and i just returned from germany, helping producing "Nail within" with Hrris Johns.
Also we have a great lable here in Israel, "Raven music" that support the metal.
We have a lot of possibilities to play live, Salem shows has great energys. the audience knows and sing all the lyrics with me, allmost every show is sold out.
The show is 80 minutes, and it includs songs from all of our releases. Every show is different because we have 4 CD's, and we try to give the audience something new every time they are coming to see Salem show. In some shows we put video screen with Salem's video clips, or projecting the show.

8. I think it's very hard for Metal bands to make their way in such a religious country, isn't it? You got some trouble cause of your music/lyrics?

8. Salem never compromised with our music and style, even if we had problems with the religious or with the government. we did have a problem when we did "Kaddish", we had an argument because they thought this is'nt appropriate to play Ha'ayara Boe'eret with Metal, This is a very sensitive subject and some people thought the music is too aggresive, but eventually We decided that it is appropriate to cover songs like that, and that is why we did it, after all we have the freedom of speech and creativity.

9. The first time I came in contact with Salem was a videoclip for "The Fading" (a song from the "Kaddish"-Abum) which was presented on Headbangers Ball (RIP) on MTV. Tell us some details about the video.

9. "The Fading" was on M.T.V on the show "Headbangers ball ". afterward we were chosen on the magazine "Kerrang" that operated with M.T.V, as one of the best 10 promising bands in this genre. "The Fading" was recorded live on one of the most successful Israeli music shows. on that show, played a lot of israeli bands. the show sent to MTV a display of 20 artists, and eventually MTV choose to screen Salem video clip.
Also, Salem has released 3 new video clips from "Collective demise", the first one shows the absurd of suicide terrorists on busses in Israel, the second deals with the pain of the people who lost their loved ones, and the third is dedicated to the Israeli Metal scene, to the audience and it shows the relationship between Salem and the fans.

10. Your new record comes out on Impact/KMG Music. Are you satisfied with their work and promotion so far and what happened with the Morbid Records deal?

10.KMG/ System Shock treat us great, I am sure that they will do a great promo when the CD will be released in Europe.
"Collective demise" was just released, so i can't really say how is their work until now, but i'm sure they will do a great work like they did with "Vader" , "Malevolent Creation" "Krabathor" "Master" and more. When our contract with Morbid records ended, we got an offer from Israeli label B.N.E., to work with producer Colin Richardson, the man who produced such known act as Machine Head, Fear Factory etc, and he flew over to Israel to record "A Moment of Silence".
A big distribution deal was on the horizon with Modern Music (Germany) but due to miscommunication between B.N.E. and the band the deal fell through. In early 2001, Salem was released from their contract with B.N.E. In December 2001, Salem signed a 3 album deal with KMG/ System Shock from Germany. "Collective demise" is the first Salem offering for KMG/ System Shock in Germany.

11. Are there tour plans to promote the new album?

11. We released 3 video clips, we have a lot of interviews and reviews. and on 2003 we are supposed to do A European tour.

12. Lets talk about your influences. You use some exotic instruments, female vocals and stuff on your album.

12. Our main influence is life itself. In Israel it's impossible to ignore the news since it has a direct effect on your daily life and as a result you have songs. another thing that inspire us is the Israeli music rootes. In any case, all 5 of us writing the material, and we all like different bands, so when we eventually build a song, it sounds like us.

13. What are your fave albums/bands in the moment and for all time?

13. My early idols were "Iron Maiden", "Black Sabbath", "Judas Priest", "Motorhead" etc'.The band that influenced me back then was "Venom", and then came other bands like "Slayer", "Sepultura", "Bathory" and more.

14. I hope you enjoyed our little inti! Good luck with Salem for the future! Any last words?

14. Thank you very much for your support. Keep metal alive!
Haunted Records - I
Haunted Records - R