What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
It always happens with that one song that really hits that sweet spot, you know what I mean? It's not like you never heard music before that one moment, but you never experienced it yet. For me the band Queen really got me hooked on rock and roll. Then you start looking around... searching which bands really rock at the moment. It so happens to be during the sudden uprise of nu-metal. I know there's a big dispute about it not being real metal but it certainly was our gateway into the heavier stuff. Then you get to meet people who introduce different subgenres of metal and man... when that world opened in front of me... I knew there was no turning back for me. It's impossible to imagine a life without.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
We're all family men and we like to spend our free time with friends and a drink and have a genuinely good time. We all have steady jobs and life is good. It wasn't always like this, we all escaped a life of chaos and confusion. As to how this influenced our creativity... our lyrical themes sure have changed a lot, from being dark and depressing to goofy horror stories. We fucking love horror movies and we watch them together almost weekly. Death metal and horror is such a great combination. We don't see ourselves growing sick of this very soon. We're loving this!
How long has your band been around?
Malfested started of as a 2-man project at the beginning of the pandemic early 2020. It was the perfect moment to start something fresh. After finishing the first EP 'Shallow Graves', we realized this was much more than just another project. The reactions on that EP were more than we expected and were a confirmation that we wanted to form a band and play live.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
We're from Kortrijk, Belgium. We had a prominent hardcore scene during the 90's and early 00's which lingers here until this day. There's not a lot of death metal to be found around here. Almost everyone starts off in a hardcore band. I simply got sick playing it, there's no freedom as a composer, it always revolves around the heavy breakdowns. With Malfested, there are no rules and no restrictions. We jump from death to doom to black. I guess there's even some hardcore that still remains. You be the judge..
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
It's from a terrible videogame we played a while back. The game sucks but the enemies, infected by evil, were called “the Malfested” and that sounded pretty death metal to our ears.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Being a covid-band, we mostly had “cancelled” shows so far. But we had some pretty memorable shows with our other bands... Somehow the tragic ones are most memorable. Once some guy decided to slit his wrist in the bathroom stall during our show. And many knockouts and injuries during our hardcore days. Drunk members unable to perform on stage. Let's just say, we learned some things the hard way.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
Any venue that can produce a passionate crowd is our favorite venue. We're all about the connection and vibe with our audience. It's sometimes hard to get the younger metalheads out of their gaming chairs for starting bands, they only come out for the big(ger) ones. Some venues (bar owners) are able to create metal communities, even organizing busses to go to other shows in other venues. They are the real treasures.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
Cradle of Filth, Dying Fetus, Insomnium, At the Gates, ... but ask us the same question tomorrow and you would probably get 4 different names. We have a broad taste in music.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band?
We haven't gotten that far yet but we can share what we've learned along the way. It's all about exposure, that means performing memorable live shows but also trying to reach new audiences through social media and other platforms. Set realistic goals and don't give up, these things take time. Look for capable musicians who are not only good at what they do but also are decent people you'd like to be around. Don't be a copy of your favorite band, it gets boring real fast. Don't look at other bands as competition but rather another group of potential friends and help each other out. You won't get rich doing this, if there's no passion, don't bother.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
It's okay to be loyal to your friends but pick them carefully. Stay away from toxic people.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
We're very proud of the The Abhorrent Arise, the single of our new EP since this was our very first videoclip we shot together and edited all by ourselves. But it's hard to pick a single song since our albums are a journey and every song is just a chapter of that book.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
We all love playing ‘Masked with the Skulls of the Fallen’ and it really works well live! The whole first EP works well live… we wrote it with the specific reason to play live as soon as possible. Covid fucked up our plans and instead of complaining we our new album takes a lot more listening since we were being extra creative with back-up keyboards and dual guitar parts.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
For Malfested we had a different approach to writing our songs. We try not to overthink it and we never stick to just one sub-genre of metal. We are a death metal band but you will hear a lot of doom- black- and even some hardcore metal influences. Especially in our upcoming album! Before Malfested our main songwriter played a hardcore band which gradually slipped into the beatdown genre which is fun for a little while but suffocates your creative spirit – it’s all about a heavy breakdown that’s it… Malfested overcompensates a bit at the moment. We’re just playing what we want to play and we don’t care if it displeases death metal purists. Of course we get influenced by other great bands but we put special care in not trying to copy them.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
On the surface our lyrics are dark fantasy/horror stories. The monsters devouring a whole bunch of people kind of stories…But I guess there’s a recurring theme of people being selfish in times of chaos and fear. Instead of helping each other and uniting to overcome a terrible enemy a lot of people will use the chaos as an opportunity to act like monsters themselves. It’s not really a message but rather a statement.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
It’s been going pretty well with Malfested I must say…of course we had many disagreements in former bands but we took this experience with us. We’re just a bunch of fun loving guys and we don’t expect to conquer the world with our brand of death metal. We set modest goals + there’s just 2 of us calling the shots and the others trust us so far. Too many opinions can collide at occasions. Our biggest fights are usually about deciding who will be the designated driver!
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
For the moment we are 100% focused on releasing our brand new EP. There wasn’t a proper release for the first one due to Covid. Everything just got cancelled! So now it’s just all about playing live and releasing our “Unethical Creations” upon the world!
The Abhorrent Arise:
Masked with the Skulls of the Fallen: