Interview: Eugenio Meccariello (Excruciation, Auric Records)

Interview: Eugenio Meccariello (Excruciation, Auric Records)

- in Written interviews

I had past interviews with Eugenio about his doom/death metal band, Excruciation, which is one of my favorite bands, but this time I had the pleasure to talk to him again, more about the small underground label he owns, Auric records.

Eugenio, is my pleasure to talk to you again. It’s been a while since our last interview. How have you been?
Hi Carla! Thanks for having me again. A little bit fed up with the pandemy, otherwise not that bad at the moment.

Last time we spoke about your band, Excruciation, but this time, let’s talk also about your label, Auric Records. First, when did you found the label?
I think that was around 2013 when Hannes (Excruciation‘s ex-guitarist) and me started the label wanting to support the Swiss underground. When Hannes left Excruciation he also left Auric Records and I found a new partner, with Mario from Liquid Aether Audio.

So basically, you started the label, releasing Excruciation albums at first?
No, actually we wanted to release some forgotten Swiss gems from the 80s on tape. But this turned out to be more diffcult as we thought. Some bands lost their interest when they noticed that there was not much money to be made. Others were impossible to trace and some didn’t even want their stuff rereleased. During this time we just had recorded Excruciation‘s Worship 7inch and decided to give it a go.

Doom, black and death metal, these are the main genres in the label’s catalogue, right?
We’re also open to other genres like Crust and D-Beat or even Dark Ambient. As long as we like it there are no boundaries.

Definitely. How do you find the bands for the label? Is it easy to find them, or do they find you?
Some were approached by us and some got in touch. What’s difficult to find are bands that got the right attitude and enthusiasm and also play the right kind of music. As we are doing the label work in our spare time we just don’t wanna work with morons. So the personal connection is pretty important.

You know that I am a fan of Excruciation, and besides this, I’ve discovered few bands in the label catalogue that also impressed me, musically: Nauthik, Fordomth, Evangelion, to name a few. Sometimes I am thinking that these small bands, most of them newcomers in the scene, with such great music, are “only signing“ with Auric, because they are so good!
Thanks for that! Hope you like our latest release too, Dodenkrocht‘s The Dying All. I like the idea to give some new and promising bands a chance and treat them the they way I would like to be treated as a musician. Of course a bigger band that brings some sales would be nice too but we have to be honest, we don’t have the infrastructure to compete with the big ones.

Do you have any particular favorite band from the label? I know, tricky question…
Hahaha… nice try. I love them all, hahaha.

Excruciation- In 2016, one of the albums, Crust, have been released via Wormholedeath records. An exception let’s say. Why didn’t you release this album aswell with Auric?
Actually, apart from some Vinyl and MC’s, we only co-released [g]host (with Gadget Records) and released the [e]met compilaton on Auric Records. All other CD’s were done by other labels, including the oldschool re-releases from the 80s. Sometimes it’s good to let your own music out of your hands and see what happens.

Lately, there’ve been released compliations and few splits albums. When we will hear a new Excruciation album?
We’re working on an album right now, tentatively called [p]ain. Around 10 or 11 songs are almost finished so I really hope to release it in 2021. We should have enough material for two EP’s and a full-length.

It is easy for you to share the time for both the band and the label?
It gets stressful sometimes and then you have to prioritize things. Not only band and label, but also the day job and last but not least I also like spending some time with my family.

The current situation with the pandemic, put on hold the gigs and fests, nothing is sure yet what will happen in the future. Aswell, the bands are trying to survive in a way, what can you tell me about the sales during these horrible times?
Horrible times, horrible sales… Especially with new bands, if they don’t play live they don’t sell records and we have to rely on them spreading their CD’s. There are so many new releases each month that it’s difficult to sell records through regular distribution during “normal” times. But now it’s been even harder.

What is the biggest goal you would like to achieve with Auric records?
That people are still listening to our releases in 20 or 30 years. And that the bands that we work with are feeling at ease while thinking at us.

Yet, Auric records is a small and independent label, how do you see label’s activity in 10 years?
Difficult question. I hope labels and physical releases are still needed. But looking at my son and his friends I doubt it. But maybe it will be a chance for smaller labels specializing in releasing small editions, who knows. Would be fun. You may ask me in 10 years, haha. But let’s take some smaller steps and see what 2021 will be up to. Plans are to release a few full lenghts like Schwermut, Evangelion, Excruciation, Babylon Asleep and some re-releases of Dodenkrocht and Moribund (Swiss oldschool Death Metal). And last but not least a new band that I’m involved, Pale Crawler, Doom as f*ck.

Thanks a lot for this interview Eugenio, as always is my pleasure talking with you and hope to see you soon! Hails!
Thanks you Carla, it was my pleasure too! Keep supporting the underground! As long as there are people like you the scene will be alive!

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