Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) is a metal music zine (Seattle region), online and on paper. 160 issues so far.
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Saturday, September 29, 2018
interview with Arallu, music from Israel
Arallu is extreme metal from Israel. The music began in the late 1990s and in 2017 they released their sixth full-length work titled Six. Said work was welcomed by reviewers who enjoyed the black metal and Middle Eastern sounds that is the heart of Arallu. In 2018 there is a new version of an album that they made some ten years ago. Originally it was called Desert Battles – Descending to the Sands. This publication is finding out more about the new version of Desert Battles. Here is an exchange about said recording and about life in Israel and Palestine. Listen to the band's music at the link given at the end of this interview.
Greetings, Arallu. Here in the U.S. people every day are hearing from the media’s furious derangement syndrome about politics. How you are all in Israel? Are people there as crazy as they are here? What is the situation with the new album?
Hello, Metal Bulletin magazine. I’m Butchered, the main former of Arallu. Humans are crazy all long the globe, unfortunately, and you can see it between the countries leaders. They play "I’m stronger than you" all the time.
Yes. We working those days for Arallu 7th album as expected to release in 2019. We finish the written process of 9 full songs. we finish the pre-production recording sessions of all instruments and now we are in the final mix process. The name of the new album we will expose really soon.
How much live activity have done recently? Have you played in 2018 in the neighboring countries like Turkey or Egypt? What about Europe?
Unfortunately, we can’t play in our neighboring counties like Egypt, Syria or Jordon. The conflict around the Middle East don’t let us do it. We played in 2015 in Turkey with a lot concerns, but we did it and it was really great experience.
We out for a tour to Switzerland and Germany for the 3rd time and to France for the first time this October and we back Israel for 3 shows and to complete the process for our new album.
Some ten years ago there was the fourth album called Desert Battles – Descending to the Sands. However, in 2018 Arallu has a new version of the album. First of all, what can you tell us about the ideas of the album in 2009? You called it Desert Battles, and to people in the U.S. the title suggests all the conflicts of the Middle East. What do you remember about the time of the album in your country and that part of the world?
The situation around the Middle East not changed from 1967 and its even worst from then. With Desert Battles album we go back to the ancient time of the Middle East, in the time of Mesopotamia. Around the battles between kings and demons of the ancient regime. Like in the song "THE DEMON CURSE", and "DESERT BATTLES" you can see how the ancient world was. When kings and demons ruled the world. From the other side "THE KEEPER OF JERUSALEM" was written when my wife was in pregnant with my first daughter. This song talks about the dilemma of brining children in to this cruel world and how to protect them.
DESERT BATTLE album of 2009 is talking about the ancient kingdoms and rulers of Mesopotamia days. The battles between those kingdoms and ancient demons, and makes a mirror to the situation of today in the Middle East. Actually, the texts of this album relevant for today as well and I believe will be relevant even for 100 more years from now.
Why is there a new version of Desert Battles?
"DESERT BATTLES album finally coming again via "Raven Music" who released the first version as well, but after long time of waiting. The original album released 2009, but we never was satisfied with the results of the final mix and mastering, and that’s why we didn’t release it again after the 2000.
Thinking about the idea of battles and conflicts and problems in the desert as a real issue for today in the Middle East, how do you feel about the situation in your country now? Do you feel like there are Jewish Israelis and Arab Israelis and others in your country today that want peace and work towards peace? Personally, do you feel any sense of pessimism about the possibilities for peace? Is war, permanent war, the future of Israel? Occupations, illegal settlements, suicide bombings, religious violence, rocket attacks, distrust, paranoia, people blaming other people, religious extremism, so on and so forth, is that the future of Israel?
Like the previous albums of the band we talking about the situation around the Middle East as it crawls to Europe and the US, and some personal issues we deal with our everyday life. The song "Adonay" from our "Six" album for example, is talking about a simple man from Jerusalem killed by terrorist attack and left behind him a huge world of people who loved him, but actually this song was talking about the last days of my grandfather who really suffered before he died a few months ago. He was my model and I really admired him.
The song "Possessed by Sleep" is about the murder of a little girl named Hillel Yaffe Ariel who was killed in her bed by a terrorist while she was sleeping. When you live around Jerusalem and you have 3 children all you're thinking about is how to keep them safe in this horrible world. From the other aspect we have the song "Soulless Soldier" which is about a soldier in the army service who fights the wars around Israel and when he killed a terrorist who tried to kill soldiers the government put him to trail for that. It's absurd. Arallu is the horn of the situation in the Middle East and specially the horn of the wars all around the years in Jerusalem. We don't look for paper news headlines. We play and live black metal from the 90's. It's more than a decade that Arallu screaming about the global terror.
"Satanic War In Jerusalem" our second album from 2002, talking about the situation in Jerusalem that spread to the world. I wrote this album in 2001 when the Islamic terror attack everywhere in Israel and especially in Jerusalem. Unfortunately, "Satanic War In Jerusalem" become a self-fulfilling prophecy and today we all know it. "The War On The Wailing Wall" our debut album from 1999, was the mix between our daily life and extreme black metal against religions.
When I’m writing my music and my lyrics I'm not looking for some victories. I mean I'm looking for something fresh, something that no one touched before. Arallu always looks to bring something different to the global metal scene and we're doing it in small steps. The atmosphere of this album is similar to the old albums. It's the feeling of the desert force and battles around the Middle East. We’re coming against what is offensive and hurting us. Us as human beings, us as individuals. The people in Israel don’t know what good life is. We are busy with worrying about personal and national security. Our lyrics are straight in your face, against the religions and what they represent and of course the people behind them.
Our last album GENIEWAR and "SATANIC WAR IN JERUSALEM talk about all those things. From the wars of the ancient times as kings tried to rule Jerusalem. With that, "SIX" album talking about the wars of today as ISIS are trying to destroy and kill anyone who doesn’t agree with their religious views. Like in the song "Only One Truth". Arallu concept is the mirror of the human race, hypocrisy of the governments all around the world including Israel, and the unwillingness and fear to fight against the extreme religion leaders. We live in the Middle East, as you know. The situation here is not easy here in Jerusalem and Israel. We live in days of war religions, and religions hatred that inspired our music and lyrics.
Is it common for Jewish Israelis and Arab Israelis to form friendships today? Do you see that happening in 2018? Are there young people who are sick and tired of the hatred of the older generations? Do you see things changing?
I'm always think to myself, we are all tired from fights and wars and maybe soon all will over, but then after a few days the headline of the news brings an evil news of dead people by terrorist who stab them or crushed people by his car. So I think that hatred not died yet and the Palestinians needs more time to understand that we not going anywhere and we still here and they needs to learn how to live here with us.
How can American fans get your merchandise?
Thanks for asking we have many fans who ordered our merchandise via Arallu.bandcamp.com/merch. All our albums cds, vinyls, patches, T shirts are there. So if someone looking for our music he can defiantly find everything there.
Thank you for your time!
Thank you very much for this great interview!