Posted on February 03th.. 2019
Questionnaire by Stefan on behalf of METAL TO INFINITY WEBZINE BELGIUM
With the music of this Belgian band you can go in many directions because their influences come from different angles. Unfortunately, some influences aren’t able to please me because of the genre never interests me – I mainly speak about the grunge vibes present in their musical approach. But on the other hand, there are also many moments where BufferState know how to convince me. They are able to write properly worked out songs and it seems fair enough to let the band stand speak for themselves during the next conversation.
Stefan: Ever recurring question to start my interviews, where do you come from and when did the band start?
Peter: The band has always been based in Ghent, the first line-up was formed in 2011.
Stefan: Who has brought BufferState to life and why have you chosen a name like this?
Peter: That would be Sander and Jan. The ultimate band name only came a year later though. In Belgium we know what a bufferstate is from the history books, we’re the country the big ones couldn’t invade but then bombed to hell anyway. It’s the kind of country that bites you in the ass when you treat it like the underdog it is. Our label is ‘Deep State of Mind’ records, so we like to attach those meanings as well.
Stefan: Finding a stable lineup was not easy during the first period of existence, were you too demanding or there was another reason?
Peter: Imagine you’d have to find not one, but 3 girlfriends that all have to match with each other. It takes time, but if you don’t give up you’ll be very happy in the end. Talking about our long line of bass players, we’ve had great ones, and we have a great one now. In between them, at a time we had been looking for a long time, we did try to be not too demanding for a while. That didn’t work out of course.
Stefan: The recordings of a first demo “Gadoma” happened without a singer, would it not have been better to wait until the place behind the microphone was taken before the recordings took place?
Peter: I would agree, but the guys were just too excited I guess. The songs were rewritten to a small degree when I wrote the vocals and lyrics for them, so some creative editing was done in the instrument tracks to fit the vocals recordings.
Stefan: Finally, a frontman was found by an ex-Iskariot member Peter Glas, yourself. Someone who comes from the extreme metal movement joins the BufferState ranks, how the collaboration came to be?
Peter: To be complete, Jan Moerman also came from Iskariot. Both of us have broad interests in music, but on the other hand the Iskariot-type powermetal may yet shine through in BufferState at some point.
Stefan: By adding your vocal lines, the first demo was re-released, shortly after BufferState played a few interesting festivals/concerts, please tell us about.
Peter: Gentse Feesten, at Bar Cocteau, a dark venue while there was broad daylight outside. That felt underground. Iron Muide, a local metal festival, with a very enthusiastic crowd front- and backstage. Verlichte Geest, one of the best venues in Belgium for a metal band to play. Those are the first that come to mind.
Stefan: A disagreement between a few band members occurred which means you had to look for guys able to replace the withdrawing forces, how did you solve the issue?
Peter: We couldn’t solve the issue, so in the end we indeed needed replacements for the bass and one of the guitars. Peter took up the guitar, and it took some time as you know to find our ultimate bass player.
Stefan: I read something about a memorable performance at venue De Verlichte Geest (Roeselare-Belgium), with thanks to bassist Bart Jacquet… I would have liked some more information about this?
Peter: We felt we really rocked the roof off that night. The place itself is somewhat legendary, so we were very excited. It was one of the few gigs with Bart, a hard driving bass player. Nothing special happened, it was just so close to the perfect gig.
Stefan: Unfortunately, Bart was forced to put all his musical activities on hold for one year and new bassist Geert Van Der Pas joined forces afterwards. Am I right while saying that he was the one who lifts the band to a higher level? What can you tell about Geert’s musical background history?
Peter: If Bart could have stayed, we might have advanced quicker. You never know. Geert definitely pushes the band in different aspects. Geert also has a very broad interest, started out in blues and gospel, but is now quite focused on hardrock and metal.
Stefan: Meanwhile, singer Peter Glas became a guitarist as well. Line-up completed, loaded with tons of ambitions and drive…. could this be the ultimate, second start for BufferState?
Peter: Yes, we’re ready to grow now. We’ve only begun to tap the potential of each individual and of the band as a whole.
Stefan: Also the character of the numbers also got a transformation, describe the style of the band from that moment on. I’d like to ask for a few names to compare with.
Peter: As we write, we discover the song ourselves. The songs have become a bit more epic, let’s say some more King Crimson got in. Facehugger was one of the last songs we wrote, and that’s a bit more Voivod. Our style changes a little bit with each song. We have a general idea in which direction we want to go next, and that may be some Raketkanon or Gojira.
Stefan: More concerts were booked, right?
Peter: Hold tight, we’re negotiating. A couple may be announced soon.
Stefan: Meanwhile, the new EP has been launched and like to ask if you guys are satisfied with the end result.
Peter: Ask this question to each band member separately and you will get very different answers. This was done on a very limited budget.
Stefan: Offered as a beautiful package in the form of a four-leaf clover, which I guess, you wanted to express something, right? Tell me the whole story please.
Peter: Sorry to disappoint you, but we like to leave room for interpretation by the audience. OK I gotta tell you something, right? We’ve put in a swastika, and I’ll tell you that’s a Jain reference, which is connected to the fact that we license our music for free for non-commercial use. Next time I’ll tell you more. The design and what we put in it is non-obvious, that’s what we like to be, we like to stimulate the imagination, not in the least our own. We definitely put a lot of effort in the packaging, and I want to thank Klaas Bullynck again for letting us use his fantastic work on the front cover. It fits the EP so well, it really lifts it up.
Stefan: I’ve penned down my thoughts on the EP a little while from here, do you agree or disagree with this discussion… speak frankly.
Peter: Your review was very flattering. We get the ‘it’s not really my style’ comment a lot, and I think we just need to erode that wall with bringing more quality and more energy.
Stefan: To whom you would recommend “Anthropy” in the first place – feel free to give up an address where to order this well-done product.
Peter: Anybody who’s looking for a heavy grooving genre-independent band that doesn’t need to compromise in their creativity, or anyone who likes to be taken on a musical journey can enjoy this EP. For a physical copy you can get in touch with us via bufferstate.bandcamp.com, as well as download the music for free.
Stefan: I suppose this one gets a successor asap – what are the plans guys?
Peter: We’re writing again right now, but the studio hasn’t been booked just yet. We’re working on some extra material for Anthropy still, after that we’ll start on the next production. We know we gotta keep ‘em coming for the fans (smile).
Stefan: Already been approached by interesting people to ink a proper deal?
Peter: Not yet. We’re learning a lot doing things ourselves, building our own small organisation to handle non-musical work. We’re building a network, little by little. It’s good to be independent.
Stefan: What does the events list look like for the coming weeks / months?
Peter: We’re planning a couple more gigs. We want to focus on writing, but we need to get out playing and promoting Anthropy. We’re working with some artists for extra visual material now. That’s going to slow down the next release a little but we’ll be even better supported for our next production.
Stefan: Let’s finish here, I want to expressly thank you for the cooperation and wish you all the best with BufferState ! Finish this interview the way you want it, cheers !
Peter: Stefan, thanks for the opportunity you’re giving us here, we appreciate this a lot!