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Sacrificium

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Oliver Tesch from the German metalband Sacrificium was guest on the Art For The Ears Interview Message-Board! Below you can find the results of this online interview. It will give you a good impression of this band, their vision and future plans.

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Discography: Demo-CD (1996); Mortal Fear (demo-tape; 1998). Available through: Sacrificium.  Official website: Sacrificium.  Interview by: mpomusic; daPHNe_K; ToddPope; Jarhead. Article Work-out by: mpo. Date: Feb. 24-March 2nd 2001

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mpomusic: There once was a band called Bloody Cross that was started in 1987 and released an album called Coming Again in 1990. Now I've heard that Sacrificium was once started by a former member of that band. I'm not sure if this is true but since you are here I can ask the question that's been on my mind for a while: Is it true and what is exactly the history of Sacrificium?

Oliver: The drummer of Bloody Cross did not start Sacrificium! We met Markus Hauth at a concert as we where searching for a new drummer for our band Hardway. After a while he played with us we decided to play some heavier music and changed our name into Corpus Christi. Markus quit playing with Bloody Cross and shortly after that we renamed Corpus Christi into Sacrificium (after the Randy Rose Album). We also changed our music style again to go even heavier. After we wrote a few new songs we recorded a demo tape. But please don't ask for it, we don't have any of them left and it sucks pretty hard. Then Sebastian Wagner (vocals, bass) quit and was replaced by Roman Wagner (vocals, keyboards) and Manuel Iwansky (bass). We also got Claudio Enzler (guitar) into Sacrificium. Markus Hauth quit Sacrificium 'cause he moved to the USA for one year and so Mario Henning got into Sacrificium. This line-up recorded our Demo CD 1996 which got pretty good reviews from Christian and non-Christian magazines. In summer 1998 Manuel Iwansky (bass) left Sacrificium. We played a couple of shows without a bassplayer and also recorded our demo tape Mortal Fear in late 1998. A few weeks after the recording we found Manuel Kerkow for the Bassplayer part. Mortal Fear got very high in to rankings of many magazines around the world, by the way. The latest news is that Roman Wagner left Sacrificium for personal reasons. That was in December 2000. A statement from him and some additional information will be published on our website soon. Claudio now takes over all the main vocal parts. On live shows I (Oliver, guitar) or Manuel will do a couple of vocal parts too. Currently we are recording 12 songs to see how they work out or if we need to change parts or melodies. We also work a lot on the vocals parts 'cause singing and playing guitar at the same time is not that easy.

mpomusic: Why has Roman Wagner exactly left the band? And are you going to replace him with another keyboardist?

Oliver: Roman left Sacrificium because he lost his motivation and his vision he had
for the band. We went through weird times in the last two years and maybe all of us lost our vision a bit. But we had a lot of talking after we played at the Depth of Winter Festival, and all of us made a clear statement to Sacrificium and its vision, so that we decided to focus more on that and to learn from our mistakes. Only Roman couldn't see his place in Sacrificium, so he quit. But he's still a close friend to us. We don't think that we'll need a permanent Keyboardplayer anymore. We still haven't figured out yet what we're going to do with the keyboards regarding our live performance. But I guess with some additional hardware we're going to solve this problem.

mpomusic: "Maybe all of us lost our vision a bit". Can you tell what the current state of the band is? I wonder as I read on your site: "Looks like Sacrificium has a record deal in the USA to record a full-length CD." The 'looks like' sounds a bit unsure, vague, to me. So, where is Sacrificium right now and where are you heading?

Oliver: You're right with the record deal. We talked to a record company in the USA but as we got in the situation where we couldn't tell if we're going to solve our problems and if Sacrificium would continue, we told the record company to wait so that we had some time for us to find out what God wants us to do and what his plan for Sacrificium is. The conclusion was that the rest of us definitely wanted to continue Sacrificium and its ministry, 'cause we felt a very strong need for the Gospel especially in the German metal scene. Right now we're recording 12 songs in our rehearsal room. This recording will be just for ourselves to find out if the songs are good enough for a CD. And also to give Claudio (guitar, vocals) the opportunity to train his voice and to figure out how to sing on the songs. After finished that and if we're satisfied with the results, we're gonna contact the record company again to see if they are still interested in Sacrificium. We also try to play some shows with Mortification and to tour with Extol this year. But those are just plans. I don't want to receive emails asking me about dates or something. Those two are just opportunities we have in mind.
The vision for Sacrificium is to work inside the secular metal scene. We want to be part of it, so we look for the change of doing shows with secular bands. Of course we play at some Christian events too because it is lots of fun and we need the contact with other Christians too.

daPHNe_K: I read in your newsletter #6 that Manuel has/had some problems with his arm, being numb or something. How is his arm doing now?

Oliver: His arm is doing better now. The major problem is that this happens from time to time. Manuel had a serious drug problem a long time ago (before he joined Sacrificium). He's totally clean now, but his body has some serious damage. And  that's what causes  sometimes a numb arm/hand. Stay away from drugs!

daPHNe_K: I thought: Hey, lets write some stuff in your guestbook. So I did. After that I checked out the other messages and to my displeasure I saw there were some awful messages from so called Satanists. I know God gives us the power to stand up against Satan, but how do you guys really feel about it?

Oliver: We don't take them very serious. 'Cause most of them aren't brave enough to post their real email address. But honestly, what would it mean if everyone would just post good and nice messages? We don't understand or, better, we don't want Sacrificium to be a band for Christians. Sacrificium should be a band for those who don't know Christ. Don't get me wrong here, we appreciate every email, word, messages from our brothers and sister and mostly from those who listen our stuff . But if we wouldn't raise any reactions from non-Christians we would have missed our purpose.

ToddPope: I just finished listening to the two songs you have on your mp3.com page and am wondering....Why do you have Pauper's Grave as having explicit lyrics? (okay, parental advisory). I mean, correct me if I am wrong but parental advisory means vulgar in lyrical/photographic nature. And Sacrificium displays no vulgarity whatsoever. So what's the deal here? Are the words to this song really that bad?

Oliver: Well, I don't know where you from, but we had some troubles in the USA. The Intro the the song Pauper's Grave is a sample from the movie Brain Dead", where a priest walks around a graveyard and sees a bunch of zombies fighting. So he walks up to them and says: "what in Gods name is going on here ... ... kick ass for the Lord!". Because of the little word "ass" people from the USA started to email me and complaining about that. So I though it would be better to add the "explicit lyrics" thing. So if you find the word "ass" offensive or vulgar the description is right. We don't see the word "ass" in this sample as vulgarity. 'Cause it means to beat someone up or do something that's really cool (beating up demons is kind of cool). It also has the effect that a lot of non-Christians are downloading our song in order to find something really bad.

daPHNe_K: From your website, I quote: "It's not only the music and the live performance...the main reason for us to play music is to serve God and to tell others of what He has done for mankind...and especially what He did in our life, how He changed it in a positive way".  I am curious what kind of reactions you get after those concerts, referring to the discussions. Any big things happened?

Oliver: The reactions go between nothing up to people who tell us that if we come again we're gonna be dead. There have been a couple of times where people liked to beat us up. But it's not extreme as it may sound like 'cause most of the time a lot of people are drunk at the shows (not because we play so bad) and they just like to promote themselves in front of their buddies. It's still can be a bit dangerous but we don't care that much about it. The last time we got into some heavy discussions after the show was when we played with Deuteronomium in Eastern Germany. But as much as the people told us how they hat us (because of us being Christians) the longer they talked with us. I guess in the end we have been discussing for about four hours of with them. That's a lot of time when you hate someone. :) But most of the time people are friendly and regularly a couple of people are coming to us and start talking to us after the show.

Jarhead: There's one thing I have been wondering about. Here in Holland where I come from all Christian metal bands somehow are supported by Fear Dark, a label and distributor. As far as I know there's no such thing in Germany. Am I right? Or when I'm not, how is the German scene organized?

Oliver: Your are right. There's no such thing as Fear Dark here in Germany. And I also don't think that the Christian metal scene is organized in any way (if there is a Christian metal scene at all). There are a couple of zines and webzines who keep people updated. But that's all. God Rockz  is turning out to be a little more than that, but we have to wait and see. I just can speak for Sacrificium here now, but we like to focus more on the secular scene and keep our contacts to secular bands and distributors. Of course we know some Christian bands here too (Greetings to Noiz!!!).

mpomusic: Any last comment?

Our goal for this year is to record a CD and to play lots of shows. Even if we have to pay for the CD ourselves and to play shows without getting paid (just for gas). So everyone who wants Sacrificium for a show, contact me. All we need is a place to sleep, food, drinks, backline (like drumkit, speakers, ...) and getting the gas bill paid.

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