Interview with Pierrick Valence, vocalist and guitar player of Phazm.
Greetings Pierrick, thank you for your time. Phazm is a Doom/Death metal band that you have formed around 2003 and debuted in 2004 with the album under the name of ”Hate At First Seed”, right?
Yes. But if you listen to our music, you may label it differently. Phazm is far more than ‘a this and that’ band. We have our own style of playing music. We have deep connection with black and death metal influences from the 90ies. That album was recorded in Denmark, in Ribbe. Old times.
Two years later in 2006 you have released the second full-lenght, ”Antebellum Death N Roll” and in 2008 was released ”Cornerstone of the Macabre”. Tell me a few things about these two releases.
Well, what do you wanna know ? This is not really a question you ask. Those two album were made in France, we had a blast as we’ve been touring around Europe with IMPALED NAZARENE and DECAPITATED, we did lots of good shows and had a lot of good experiences on the road. We were the first to play extreme music adding harmonicas and slide guitars to it.
Let’s talk about the new album, ”Scornful Of Icons”, what is the theme of the album?
Loss. Mourning the old ones. Paganism. Living being bereaved. Fighting monotheism. Asatrú.
What can you tell me about the cover artwork of the album?
It’s done by Valnoir from Metastazis and it reflects all the topics of our songs. It’s better to listen and read the lyrics. Then you can figure out what it’s all about. I won’t tell more.
Who is the one who writes the music in the band?
Are you going to tour soon to promote the new release?
Of course, we are actually touring in France. European tour is coming in september and january.
Phazm had a break during 2009 and you got back in 2012, what were the reasons the band was on hold for some years?
We needed to focus on our personal lives. To clean up the mess after being dedicated to the band during many years. We needed to take some rest as surviving with/by only the band became at a point just impossible. Now we’re back, stronger than before and with more creative and financial power.
You were active in other metal bands, one of them is Agressor, why have you left Agressor?
It was a huge pleasure to play with AGRESSOR. But my band is PHAZM, and I’d rather be focused on what matters to me the most. I play with other kind of ensembles, as I am a full time musician. I play scandinavian folk as a nyckelharpist for example. If I can not be 100% dedicated to a band I work with, I just quit.
What is your opinion about the French metal scene, is it growing?
I don’t really have a opinion of a so called French Metal scene. I just like bands, and I don’t care if they’re french of not. There are excellent band from France, like TREPALIUM, DEATHCODE SOCIETY, HIMINBJORG, DELUGE, REGARDE LES HOMMES TOMBER, LOUDBLAST etc… But the fact they’re french is something I couldn’t care less about. I like bands for what they stand for, not for where they come from.
Is anything else would you like to add about Phazm?
Check us out by yourself, it’s very easy nowadays to discover new bands via internet. Tape trading was a lot of work, it costed money and you had to be patient. Now you just have to clic. If you’re reading this, my advice: go to some streaming platform and check our last album, ”Scornful of Icons”. You will like it.
Cheers Pierrick, thank you again. Rock on!