Peculiarly spelled Radtskaffen are ceratinly a band towatch in the Danish capital, Copenhagen. Since, their formation, in 2014, they have managed to release (in digital format) a live EP (‘Live At Lygten’), a single (‘Nightmare’) and their debut studio EP ‘Worldwide Anarchy’. Their thrash, anarcho-punk musical style attracted the interest of GlobMetal Promotions, that didn’t waste time and decided to get them signed. If you are keen on DIY music with thrash metal, anrcho-punk elements, then you should definitely check the following interview out.
Let’s show some good manners then and start with the appropriate band introduction…
We are Radtskaffen (Ret-Ska-Ffen) a thrash/groove metal band from Denmark. We are three guys with interest in metal music & with the dream of one day getting heard all over the world. Our inspirations are mainly the big Four (Slayer, Metallica, Megadeth & Anthrax). But we also are inspired by newer bands like Rammstein, Havok and Lost Society. We are still new in the game. The band was born 2 years ago in 2014 when Ben (Guitars/Vocals) decided to start writing music. Ben’s best friend Bjørn (Bass/Backing Vocals) decided to spontaneously buy a bass guitar at that exact moment and joined the band before the first 5 songs were written. When they finally were written Ben met Chris (Drums/Backing vocals) at a local one day festival the day after and asked if he was willing to give the band a go. He agreed to this and then Radtskaffen was born.
Your debut ‘Worldwide Anarchy’ EP, is a wonderful example or better mix of DIY, thrash metal and anarcho-punk values. Would you agree with this? Please discuss…
Well the only reason it is DIY is that we recorded, mixed and mastered everything ourselves. We tried to nail old school thrash metal production style but the music is kinda punk related we agree. The anarcho punk elements are heavily influenced by Ben (that writes the lyrics) who once was a punk and today is still an anarchist. The EP is basically just about hate for everything. The song ‘Deus Lo Vult‘ is a song against christian religion. ‘Oblivion‘ is about the terror attacks in Paris. We refer to this by saying ”129 souls in purgatory”. Quote from Ben: ”I write when I am angry. It stops me from hitting people in their faces” Basically, every song on the EP is dedicated to someone or something we have something against.
I feel lucky enough holding a copy of your ‘Worldwide Anarchy’ EP. On the other hand, I got surprised that you didn’t include songs’ lyrics in this physical release. Of course we can see everything online, but…First “dynamite” ‘Hippies’ starts with lyrics like: “I hate this fucking scene, everyone is a fucking nazi, Nothing but bullshit wannabe hippies, assholes with only bad apologies, filling your head with meaningless bullshit, persuade you with lies they believe themselves…. ‘’. Would you like to talk about the scene then? I believe it is important for you…
There are reasons why we don’t mingle around in the punk scene. First: We don’t really talk to them after some problems between Ben and the local scene in Copenhagen. And second, despite our common political and musical values don’t get along very well. Quote from Ben: ”I feel backstabbed by my so called ”friends” so that is why I turned my back on them, which is also why I started Radtskaffen in the first place. All I wanted to do was give them the middle finger.”
The metal scene is really different though. The danish metal scene is really cool to be honest. We have played with some great bands which both play great and are generally nice guys (and girls). The problem is just that it is so damn hard to get gigs up here since the venues bank box is empty. When the venues have no money they cannot pay for transportation, food, booze etc… But when a gig finally comes to us people are generally really cool.
Having listened to ‘Live At Lygten’ release which is available for streaming/ downloading on your bandcamp page, I assume that your live appearances would be highly energetic, if not mindblasting! Could you please give us a clue of Radtskaffen’s live experience?
People usually go crazy live. Moshing, intense headbanging and a party in the bar. Apparently there was a guy who once got knocked out in the mosh… So yeah pretty intense.
Listening to your music, one can easily notice diverse influences from groove metal to anarcho-punk and thrash metal. Which bands/artists do you think have shaped your today’s sound?
Oh well definitely the big Four as mentioned earlier. But definitely also Pantera, Rammstein and a Danish underground band called Grotæsk. But mostly, just thrash metal both old school and new school. Lyrically Ben is really inspired by a Danish anarcho punk band called Paragraf 119 with the rhymes and word plays. Also he has just recently tried to expand and get inspiration from guys like Tim Minchin and Dave Mustaine.
One day in studio with Radtskaffen. Would you like to describe it?
Quote from Bjørn: “A pain in the fuckin’ ass...”
But besides from being a fucking pain in the ass due to time issues we try to take it really professional. Everything from recording drums to guitars and vocals etc. has to be done right. Ben does most of the producing since he has been building a home studio with Bjørn for a couple of years now. Nothing is really scheduled other than the drums since Chris lives far away half of the time. Guitars, bass and vocals usually are just done over time when there is a ‘hole’ in the everyday life. Most of the time is spent on finding the right sound and writing guitar solos (because of Ben’s massively annoying ego). A lot of breaks, coffee and beers are a part of Radtskaffen’s studio time since we don’t want to rush anything.
For a DIY band like you, how did you decide to cooperate with a promotion company like the GlobMetal Promotions one? Sharing similar values?
We started working with GlobMetal Promotions as they reached out to us and asked if we were interested in a PR deal. At first we did not really believe it was true. But we figured “Hell, why not at least send them a message.”
So we did that! and it turned out that GlobMetal was a legit company who actually believed in us. So we started cooperating and already in the first month we have gone further than we had ever believed. We are very satisfied with the treatment GlobMetal has given us and are looking forward to keep the business going.
Which underground Danish bands/acts should we pay attention to?
Well we played a gig with these guys called Kurgan who make viking inspired death metal. other than that we have had great experiences with Grotæsk (Motörhead-ish) and Poisoner (Kreator-ish thrash). Also, we played once a gig with this band called Our Sin with a frontwoman. Their drummer was amazing! and the sort of alternative rock/metal style fitted the singer very well.
Are you involved in politics in any way, or you try to keep away and focus on your art?
Well Bjørn and Chris has nothing to do with Politics other than voting at the elections. Ben has been at left wing riots in Copenhagen during his time in the punk scene but nothing fancy. For the most part he has attended Anti-racist protests and supported riots for more havens around Copenhagen. We all focus more on our art these days.
Which is Radtskaffen’s motto?
A bottle o’ Whiskey a day keeps the doctor away!
Ending this one with your future plans…
As for now we are writing material for a full length album. The album will be fully recorded, mixed and mastered by ourselves again. Also, we are going in a much more aggressive way than before. We aim at getting harder, heavier and more in-your-face for each album we make (basically more thrash). the album will be 45+ minutes. We will be re-recording each of the EP songs along with our brand new material and the ‘Nightmare‘ single. As for now we are in the demo making process and things are slowly approximating to our goal. A 45+ minutes CD with a booklet and everything. Also we are constantly looking for gigs. And yeah… that is the future for Radtskaffen right now.