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Pro Pain
Pro Pain - Gary Meskil22 years of Pro Pain Ė 22 years of Gary Meskil. The singer and songwriter from one of the most popular Hardcore-Bands Pro Pain was interviewed by our youngest editor Jakob Volksdorf. The 14th album of Pro Pain THE FINAL REVOLUTION at this day celebrates his live debut in Annaberg-Buchholz.

 J.V., 29.11.2013

We asked...
 Hey Gary, how are you today?

Gary: I'm doing pretty ok, just trying to get over a very bad cold, but otherwise I'm ok.

First of all: Describe THE FINAL REVOLUTION with a few words.

Traditional, brutal, honest and in your face!

For me it's the best record since the self-titled one from 1997, the others werenít bad, but PRO PAIN really is a masterpiece. Since the 25th of November THE FINAL REVOLUTION is available in whole Europe, what are the reactions so far?

The first reactions were great! I think with Pro Pain, as long as the album is straight up and heavy most of the fans like it and most of the journalists as well. There are always a few "may-sayers" but I think that's to be expected, and only on some of our experimental albums there we get more criticises (NO END IN SIGHT or records like that). But with THE FINAL REVOLUTION everything is going great. You know I think some 9 out of 10 reviews are good so far and the fans seem to be enjoying as well.

What was the idea behind the album title?

We always try to come up with something that is really timely and that might have a bit of a dual meaning in it and that means something. Pro Pain is always been a sort of a parameter for social political sentiments in the early days we were speaking for a sentiment coming of an American point of view but since we have been traveling so much over the years we take on a more worldly view. I think weíre living in some revolutionary times now where it's quite evident what you see going on around the world. Probably because of the economic crisis some people just having a really hard time for themselves and their families. Being a bit of a spectator and a songwriter I try to put these 2 things together and to come up with clever and fitting titles. So I thought THE FINAL REVOLUTION is very fitting for Pro Pain on 2013.

You wrote all the songs yourselves?


What are your inspirations as a song writer?

I guess as a songwriter I got different faces. There is the musician which makes me trying to make songs which fans of heavy music in general can appreciate. I don't like to write things that are to technical and I think there are great bands for that, but with Pro Pain I want to keep it pretty simple, grooving and real heavy and I like to make really solid arrangements. But then there is my lyricist side which makes me speaking about things I have observed at the daily basis, I never have to look out for any inspiration to write songs because it's parts of my nature to be informed about things happening in the world. So my lyrics are just a reflection of those observations.

How far are you satisfied with your 14th studio album?

Iím very satisfied with it. During the creative process we look for self-satisfaction first. But also we want to make a record for the fans- I think that's really important. So this is a very fine line that we have to draw between making a record for ourselves and making a record for our fans. An I think if we can do both that's a great album. I think in the case of NO END IN SIGHT which I mentioned a few minutes ago it was more or less a record for us because I thought our artistically side just need it at this time. Sometimes in order to move forward you have to satisfy yourself as an artist and do what you really think is wright at this time. And it allowed us to move one with more brutal material. THE FINAL REVOLUTION reminds us of our early albums (For example the self-titled one you mentioned some minutes ago). CONTENTS UNDER PRESSURE, FOUL FOR FREEDOM and even FIST FULL OF HATE are quite similarly to the actual album. I have a certain style in my writing and I think Pro Pain fans are very comfortable with it. It's something that I figured out with the time; I reproduce things but don't repeat myself.

The tour includes 23 concerts all over Europe, but the biggest part of it finds place in Germany, why?

I think as time goes by most metal bands are finding their biggest market in Germany and that speaks for the country, it means it's the metal capitol of the world per kilometer. It's pretty cool to be a part of it. Another reason for this are the great festivals.

Some years ago you played in this region too, at the Sauberg Open Air, right?

We played there this year as well, itís a lot of fun and the organizers are doing a really great job, the guys from the band Engel In Zivil are great. At Sauberg itís always like weíre at home. Everytime they invited us we played there.

The supports acts of the upcoming tour, ZUUL FX, SoulLine and KomaH were they chosen by you or by the management?

It had nothing to do with any management; it went through me dealing with the bands themselves. These are bands I have known for quite a lot of time. With Zuul FX from France were toured together twice before. SoulLine supported us I think in 2011 and KomaH has been on the row with us 2-3 times in the past. Jonas our drummer currently still plays in KomaH but there's a fill-in drummer on this tour. So the whole thing is like a family on wheels.

Tonight youíre playing at the Alte Brauerei, rather a small club, but what do you prefer, a large concert hall or just a small club?

For me the size of the crowd or the venue doesn't matter, the mood matters the most. Weíve had great shows in places that held 100 people but also we had great shows in front of 150000 people. It all depends on the mood. We're mostly a club band; Pro Pain is a band for small stages. Bands which are a bit "thrashiger" and "heavier" fit better in small venues, because if there is more space those types of bands can sound a bit cluttered. I think bands like die Böhsen Onkelz are made for bigger stages because of that sound. Bands playing faster and tighter in my opinion are much better on smaller stages.

By the way: I know you toured with Böhse Onkelz in the past, you still have contact to some of them?

I have spoken to Gonzo some time ago, he's a great guy he was one of the heads. Heís a really nice guy, family guy. Stephan is a really great guy too, very funny, he's the guys always want to hang out and drink a beer with you. Kevin is very cool, but I don't know him that well, we've had some conversations but he seems to be more private. Pe is very cool, but I think to quiet. In generally they are a nice band, always great to us.

You played at their "farewell-festival", the Lausitzring Open Air?

Yes, that was quite an event! We were thrilled to be a part of it. To be selected supporting a festival like this was really amazing for us. The people still talk about that show. It was awesome, I watched the Onkelz play from the observation deck and it was something really great. Something I will never forget.

Pro Pain now exists for more or less 21 years...

22, our first album came out in '92, it was recorded in '91. It's easy to mistake it because the album was released in the United States first, roadrunner released it almost a year later...I correct this "mistake" many times, many people think we were formed in 1992...

...under which conditions there will be no Future for Pro Pain?

It isn't in my hands; it's in the hands of the fans. A lot of people ask me for this, but as long as there is enough support Pro Pain will exist. Right now I'm still enjoying it; I think weíre making still good records. We have fun on stage and we don't make big plans, we just focus on the moment, now on the tour, playing some open airs: We have G.O.N.D., Hellfest, and then I just confirmed Graspop, so we will be around the summer and hopefully write some new music after the summer again.

I know some people meaning hardcore isnít heavy metal, what do you think about the subgenres and the resulting thinking?

I think a lot of the genres are created by the labels and the media. Because in order to keep people interest they have to label things continuously, itís a sort of rebranding, you take the same thing and put a different name on it, so it "sounds" like a new brand. For example in the 80s we had certain type of metal and hardcore called crossover, and it was the same as metalcore just in a different time and with a different name. I don't like the labeling, because if you look at music as a whole, metal and hardcore speak for a very small piece of that pie. I don't need to be so, because itís a sort of polarizing the audience. I like metal just being metal and hardcore just being Hardcore and then the fans don't have to choose. I think bands deserve more than continuously getting labeled by magazines. I don't buyin' this shit, but also I donít waste much time with thinking about it. [Laughing]

Pro Pain - Gary Meskil, Jakob Volksdorf

So, this was my last question. Thank you for the Interview and good luck for the upcoming tour- the last words are up for you:

Thank you very much! I would like to say thank all people listening and supporting us. So far it is a long, great journey. We're just beginning our tour here tonight in Annaberg, were looking forward to the show we have concerts lined up till December 21st. Come out and see the band and check out THE FINAL REVOLUTION Ė you won't be disappointed.

¬ Pro Pain
¬ 29.11.2013 eng | deu
¬ 01.07.2007
¬ 19.11.2010
¬ 01.07.2012
¬ 29.11.2013

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