Deprivacija are a blackened sludge metal band from Lithuania who recently released their second album on Slovenian label On Parole Productions after first releasing it independently. The band is coming to Slovenia at the end of January for a short tour - four concerts are planned - so we decided to ask the band what we can expect from them.
DEJAN: Your name is “Deprivacija”, in Slovene this means “taking away, robbing”. I suppose this word has the same meaning in Lithuanian, your mother tongue?
DOMAS: Yes, indeed it does. We actually chose this name after a Meth Drinker song called Deprivation back in 2015.
DEJAN: Who are Meth Drinker?
DOMAS: Meth Drinker was a relatively short-lived sludge act from New Zealand. In our humble opinion, they might as well be the best sludge band to have ever existed.
DEJAN: So, what was taken away? What was stolen from you?
DOMAS: Nothing was taken away really; it is just a reference to Meth Drinker.
DEJAN: What is your music about?
DOMAS: Our music is generally exploring the more difficult aspects of being a human. Such as experiencing unfair expectations of the society and being overwhelmed.
DEJAN: So, would you say that because everyone has to be the best the high expectations of the society took away a part of our humanity?
DOMAS: These artificial societal expectations have definitely had a negative impact on our mental health.
DEJAN: Is capitalism taking away our humanity?
DOMAS: That’s a very good and philosophical question worthy of its own discussion, however, shortly put, I do think so. Apathy, indifference and ignorance are symptoms of the system.
DEJAN: First you worked in Kaunas, now you are situated in Vilnius. Are work conditions for bands better there?
DOMAS: Our two original members, Domantas (guitar) and Karolis (bass), moved to Vilnius due to lack of local musicians relating to this type of music.
DEJAN: How big is Kaunas actually?
DOMAS: Kaunas is actually as big as Ljubljana, both in the number of inhabitants and size.
DEJAN: How is the metal scene in Lithuania in general?
DOMAS: We are mostly playing gigs related to Vilnius punk scene, which is diverse, full of talented musicians and good people.
DEJAN: So the punk scene likes sludge more than the metal scene?
DOMAS: I would not necessarily dare to make that claim. I believe that sludge as a genre often attracts both fans of metal and punk equally.
DEJAN: I have to admit that I don't know a lot bands from there and they do not often cross my way. I know Obtest, which are not active any more, and I have heard of Juodvarnis. Any other suggestions from you?
DOMAS: There are definitely more. Our members have played or are playing in Sløga, Degra, ZLPGNR. Other notable acts include Erdve, Extravaganza, Red Water, Aortes and more.
DEJAN: Thank you for your suggestions.
DEJAN: Let’s talk about your music now. How would you describe it?
DOMAS: Introspective blackened sludge with a hint of bleak hardcore.
DEJAN: That sounds very experimental, doesn’t it?
DOMAS: I think a lot of musicians tend to struggle with limiting their sound to one particular genre, it’s sometimes hard to evaluate your work from a subjective perspective and I believe we are no exception. We do try not to limit ourselves in the confines of one genre’s canon, so I suppose calling our music experimental is not entirely wrong.
DEJAN: You’ve got two albums out; the first is Dugne and the second Nematoma Ranka. Any style or genre changes there?
DOMAS: Moving forward we introduced some more post metal sounds and with recent member changes and relocation we gained some crust influences.
DEJAN: So the debut album is actually more sludge?
DOMAS: Yes, I think it’s pretty safe to say that. Our early compositions were slower, longer and more monotonous than our later work. I think the material that we have written for the upcoming album is even more interdisciplinary in terms of subgenres and more experimental, yet still retaining the bleak and heavily melancholic soundscapes.
DEJAN: You have published Nematoma Ranka digitally in 2021 and then came in touch with our label On Parole Productions and put it on CD last year. On the other hand you did everything by yourself for your debut album. What is different for you working with a label? Better?
DOMAS: It is for sure easier to make releases. We are very thankful for the label’s help.
DEJAN: What about the reach? What do you expect from On Parole?
DOMAS: We do observe increased interest from Slovenia ever since the album was released physically, which is very nice to see. On Parole have already fulfilled all the expectations that we had – the album is released physically, we have an upcoming mini-tour in Slovenia during which we’ll even perform at the label’s anniversary festival. The people at On Parole are very easy to work with and we hope to keep working with them.
DEJAN: I was surprised when I saw a band from Lithuania with On Parole. It doesn’t happen often that a foreign band is publishing in Slovenia. How did you find them?
DOMAS: The label found us. Thank you, Goran.
DEJAN: When listening to your current album I was surprised about the tempo changes you do. The album starts relatively dynamic and then gets slower and slower. From mid-tempo black metal to sludge/post black metal. Where do you find yourself the most comfortable?
DOMAS: We try to compose music thinking a lot about emotional impact. It is much more immersive that way.
DEJAN: This week you’ll perform in Slovenia, startin today in Postojna. How many shows are planned?
DOMAS: We have 4 shows planned. Like you already said, we are playing in Postojna today with Ater Era, in Ljubljana on 2nd February with Sign of the Devil, in Trbovlje on 3rd February (On Parole XXI) and finally in Maribor on 4th February (Metal Erection XIV).
DEJAN: Who helped you with that? Also On Parole?
DOMAS: Exactly, On Parole.
DEJAN: Other than in Slovenia will you perform nearby before or after the concerts you just mentioned?
DOMAS: We hope to do that next time.
DEJAN: Have you ever performed this far south?
DOMAS: No, we never played far from home.
DEJAN: How should the Slovenian metalheads prepare for your visit? What should we expect?
DOMAS: Prepare the sludge dance moves. We will perform our best and will expect to see your faces there.