Interview with Apes of God (El Salvador)
This is an excerpt of a quite personal interview with a band that has made a name for their own as one of the best bands of the decade in Salvadoran metal, despite all adversity.
First of all, we want to express our gratitude for providing the space to the band and -above all send greetings to all the readers of this second edition and encourage them to continue supporting these types of projects that keep the flame of the underground alive.
- How did the band start?
Rodrigo: Apes Of God was born as an idea or concept in 2009 when I tried to start with the project in my school days, after having finished with a first project that we had tried to put together with some friends. Unfortunately, I didn't know many people who lived metal with the same passion as me, so I preferred to continue composing on my own and hoping to meet more people who were passionate about the idea of starting a band. In 2011 I met Cesar outside the Maskab Open Air 2011 and it so happened that he also wanted to form a band and because there was a good connection with him from the beginning we set ourselves the goal of starting Apes Of God but unfortunately (and for personal reasons for each one of us) we started the rehearsals until 2015. At that time we would meet in my living room, just Cesar and me, to try to play the songs that I had already composed in all that time on guitar and voice only because we did not have a drummer, bassist and less so did we know how to program drum machines hahaha but the idea was to finally start with the band and for us that was already a great advance. That year I remember that we only rehearsed the songs with what was available and after a few months we were encouraged to record the first band's demo that was published just a year after starting our rehearsals (Holy Spirit was published in September 2016). After the recording and release of our first production, we managed to make our live debut and, since then, we have not backed down.
- How would you describe, in your own words, the músical evolution of the band from its beginnings in 2015 to the present?
Rodrigo: I think that throughout this period of time the most important thing is that we have learned a lot with each production we have released. I remember that when we published the “Holy Spirit” (demo) in 2016 we had no idea of anything that involved recording a couple of tracks, before that I would have been happy to be able to listen to my recorded songs with a mobile phone or something like that and I swear I would have listened to those recordings as the best that existed hahaha but as I said, it has been a learning process and I am 100% sure that we still have a lot to learn since from the first rehearsal this path has been a testing process, error, and correction; It is not that now we do not fuck things up but we do it is less than before hahahaha. But, I think that this evolution is noticeable in each production we have released, from knowing absolutely nothing about how to record an álbum we have come to know a little bit at least hahahaha but above all I am proud of the work done and the effort that all the members who have been part of the band they have invested in Apes Of God, I keep this and the great times we have had.
-After the tragic César's death, which is reason enough to put an end to any band, which was what I understood when I read the first statement published afterward- Why did you decide to keep the band active?
Rodrigo: I think that first statement was not fully understood, we stated that we were going to leave the stages in El Salvador and, believe me, it is something we are going to keep, we are not going to play in El Salvador again, but the activity of a band is not limited to just playing live, on the opposite; there are many other things that can be done out of the stage. For me, playing live is the most comfortable thing a band can do, we at least see it as more meaningful and productive to invest time in rehearsals to compose new music and enter the studio to record it, I think that it is the only way to create a legacy that -of course- is much more important in the long run. Unfortunately, the last concert we had was going to be the last concert we were going to play at during 2019 because we were going to start rehearsals for the band's new full-length álbum in September, which had been composed since June 2019. The reason why we decided to continue is that this is our passion, we knew it would be difficult to get up and carry on but we had to do it. Also, I don't think it would have been fair to abandon everything we have fought for since 2015, and -above all, I believe that the best way to respect and honor the memory of a person whom you appreciate is by not staying in the ground commiserating yourself but to get up to continue fighting for what that person also fought for.
The full interview was published in English and Spanish in Metal Extremista Vol. II, April 2021.