Redreigner is a death metal band from Greece, active since 2020. Lucas Biela (LB) interviewed them for ISKC Radio Group.
1/ LB: Ladies first, could you tell us about the arty and intriguing artwork of your debut record?
Natasha Papika is a fantastic artist located in the Netherlands and a dear friend who Constantine grew up with. When it came to the cover we approached her to do it because we believed in her raw ability and ideas. After listening to our music she decided to base her artwork around seahorse creatures due to the various symbolisms that followed them throughout the ages. The main one being strength and power.
2/ LB: Redreigner was formed by two brothers, Petros and Constantine Jajas. Metal Archives informs us that Petros is involved with Craniology for more than 20 years. What about Constantine? And how did the idea of forming a band with his brother came?
Petros was a founding member and a part of Craniology for a long time. They were one of the early Grind-Death Metal bands in Thessaloniki, Greece and very true to that. The band has been broken up for years now. Someone needs to update Metal Archives! Constantine was a session musician and guitar teacher for about a decade after finishing his music degree and appeared in various groups from 2009 up to roughly 2018. Throughout the years the idea of forming a Death Metal band would come and go, with a few demos existing scattered in lost hard drives. Everyday pressure peaked so the need to decompress through music came to an all time high, thus Redreigner were born. The connection was already there with them being brothers and having grown up with the same records.
3/ LB: First thing that strikes with Redreigner’s music is that it is rather slow or mid-paced, almost groovy in parts, with a few speedy moments. Is the globally slow pace a means to set yourself apart from the horde of today’s speed-oriented death metal acts, or is that a means to create more creepy atmospheres, with a tension that builds slowly? I hear echoes of Gothenburg melodic death metal scene in music and Martin van Drunen (Pestilence, Aspyx) in vocals: what bands had the more influence on your debut material?
It’s the result of a discussion we had on when to go all out. We feel our music benefits from variety in tempo instead of blasting all the way through songs. We like to have moments where our music can breathe. In all honesty, beyond that, we haven’t given it much thought. Our influences have more to do with it than anything else. Death, Morbid Angel, Suffocation and Cannibal Corpse from the US. Bolt Thrower, Carcass and Napalm Death from the UK. Those are our main influences but there’s also Slayer of course and Testament who we’ve headbanged quite a lot to. Pestilence, Atheist and Cynic. King Diamond. Sabbath and Heaven and Hell. Anything that involves Dave Suzuki (Churchburn, Vital Remains). It’s a mixed bag but all of them used just the right amount of tension in their songs and we strive to achieve that in our own way.
4/ LB: could you tell us how the different members were recruited for this project? Friends? Word of mouth?
We knew Paschalis from Zakula and his previous band Sacram. Anastasis has been in the metal scene of Thessaloniki from a young age. Both sound unique and after talking to them they proved to be good people so they were invited to join. They were a perfect fit from the get go. Chris was invited to guest on drums and it was a blast having him. We were aware of his ability from his time in Vital Remains, so we knew he’d be fit for the part.
5/ LB: how do you work on songs? Does anyone bring his own ideas, or is there a mastermind behind all songs?
Constantine and Petros do a good amount of work but the rest are free to do their own thing over the base structure as well as change or completely turn down ideas if it’s not working for them.
6/ LB: This debut EP is really good, not only because it features the incredibly talented drummer (yet still very young at the same time) Chris Dovas, but also because it features strong musicianship and great performance of all musicians involved (strong guitar riffs, melodic guitar solos, hellish vocals…). Apart from the Jajas brothers, given that other players are involved in numerous bands, do you plan to keep the same line-up on future releases?
Thank you! We do appreciate the kind words. Chris only guested on this first EP and really helped us during our first phase but he won’t be a part of Redreigner in future releases. We have a new drummer, the name of which we can’t reveal yet, who is a great fit and will be featured in future releases and live performances. The rest of the line-up will stay the same. We are happy and appreciative of everyone onboard.
7/ LB: Speaking of future releases, is a full-length album planned any time soon?
Our full-length will be released by 2023. It could happen earlier since the material exists but we’d like to focus on taking the band on the road and do what bands should. Play live infront of an audience!
8/ LB: Will the next album be in the same vein, or should we expect something different?
The Redreigner EP was our first attempt as a group so whatever follows will definitely be more evolved. A step further if you will. Tighter for sure. Don’t expect us to do a one-eighty though. We still have areas to explore within the genre.
9/ LB: Is death metal scene strong in Greece today? Besides Redreigner, are you involved mainly in local bands or with international bands?
Oh for sure. There’s top tier bands such as Septic Flesh, Nightrage (Exhumation) and Dead Congregation that have been going at it for years and are well known among Death Metal fans. Then there’s numerous more underground acts like Mortal Torment, Abyssus, Cursed Blood, Cerebrum and Sickening Horror that are keeping the scene alive and vivid.
No, besides Paschalis who also sings in Zakula (great stuff, check them out) our main focus is and will be Redreigner.
10/ LB: Please let us know if you want to add anything else?
Thank you for this. It was a blast. You did your research and we truly appreciate it. For those reading this. Check out our music, we hope you connect with it. We are looking forward to playing for you!
Redreigner | Myst (2021) [Single]