Exclusive: Arif Rot (Wormrot) Interview + New Track

There are a shitload of killer grindcore bands popping up nowadays. One band that stands out is Singapore’s own Wormrot. Their music is a face-pounding melee of blistering grind. I have followed the band since their first album “Abuse” and I am not giving up any time soon. The band recently finished up their Sophomore album “DIRGE” and lead singer, Arif took the time out to answer a few questions for me. Read on to learn that Singapore has a shitload more bands than you thought, how the band came together, and how Singapore’s National Service blows!

Be sure to check the bottom of this interview to hear the first song off of Wormrot’s up-and-coming album, “DIRGE.”

Wormrot on Metal Archives
Wormrot on MySpace
Wormrot on Facebook

Tell me a little about how Wormrot came to be.
I met an old high school friend, Rasyid, who had just completed his National Service (2007) by a chance meeting through a mutual friend and I invited him to try out on the guitars. A couple of jamming sessions followed yet we couldn’t find a comfortable stride. Rasyid and myself decided to go on our own to form a grindcore band, retaining ‘Wormrot’ as our band name. Fitri was a friend of mine in camp while we were serving our National Service. He fit the empty drum slot comfortably and secured himself in the first jamming session.

How did Digby from Earache find out about the band?
He was basically listening to an online mix grindcore compilation and if i’m not mistaken, the song “Born Stupid” caught his attention. He contacted us through MySpace and everything went smooth sailing after that. It’s that simple. You can read more regarding the signing here.

Can you tell me a little about Wormrot’s debut album, “Abuse?” The writing and recording process, etc.
Abuse was rather a rushing album. Not in terms of song writing, but the production. As I recall, we had to release the album before leaving for our DIY Europe tour back in 2009. It was only a week away and Abuse was still not in production. But everything went cool thanks to our ex-label mate Aziz of Scrotum Jus Records (Singapore). Recording process was rather fast too. Rasyid and Fit did and excellent job in the recording studio (TNT MUSIC PROD SINGAPORE). And I did the mastering and vocal recording back at home. All was good.

There are a lot more bands in Singapore than I thought there were. Do you see a lot of local shows and if so, who are some bands that stand out?

Yes, there are definitely some great bands here in Singapore just lacking in exposure to the right listeners. Bands like Magnicide, Demisor, Asilent, Analdicktion, Nafrat, Whore House Butchery, Cardiac Necropsy and more. We have talented musicians that’s for sure. Personally I don’t see a lot of local shows. Some, not many.

Who or what serves as an influence for you, personally?
Personally, Rahi from Insect Warfare is definitely one of my influences. Also I listen to tons of powerviolence like Spazz, Flachenbrand, Despise you, Lack of Interest and more. Any band that has a pissed off feel is an ok go.

What initially got you into metal or grindcore more specifically?
Maybe I was an angry child back in the day. It just grew on me. The first pissed off album I listened to was Pantera’s “The Great Southern Trendkill” at the age of 13 or 14. And immediately fell in love. Grindcore comes way later when I heard about bands like Repulsion, Carcass and Nasum. I didn’t know there were more pissed off bands and I started to research more. It goes on and on.

What do you think of grind bands today? Do you think it is up to par with forerunners like Napalm Death or Brutal Truth?
Napalm Death and Brutal Truth are awesome. Today’s grind is more.. Hmmm ..How do you say it, versatile song writing. Cross overs here and there. Some are definitely faster and way pissed off. But thanks to the old timers such as the above, we, the new bands have the roots to begin with. I can’t say if it’s on par but we do have faster and crazier bands nowadays. It’s not how long you are in the band or in the scene whatever. It’s about how hardworking you are to produce a massive album and even the old timers will tend to lick your balls.

In Singapore, it is mandatory to serve in the National Services, correct? What was that like?
Yes it definitely is. We 3 are currently still in the Army until we hit like the 10th fucking cycle of the Re-servist. To tell you the truth, it’s stupid and a waste of my fucking time. Even though I got to do this shit like only 2 weeks every year without fail. I still despise it to the very core. Nothing beats the feeling of going in the jungle training your ass off with imaginary enemies. I mean come the fuck on, Singapore is an island. What war are we talking about.

What is in store for Wormrot in 2011?
We have already completed our upcoming album “DIRGE”. Everything was sent to Earache Records and we’ll just wait for the production. We have tours coming up for the new album, most definitely. That is basically it for now. All in all, We gonna grind, grind and grind again.

Here is the first song, “Manipulation” off of Wormrot’s forthcoming album “DIRGE” which comes out May 3rd.