Interview with Nervecell

Thanks for the interview, and let’s get started with the questions:

Infernal Masquerade: “Preaching Venom” is you new album that features great death metal music. Is the old school vibe something the band shoots for? Or it just comes naturally based on the band members influences?

Rami: Thanks for your words! We are all fans of old school death metal and we really like the originality of this genre coming from late 80’s early 90’s. We are also fans of modern death metal (technical, brutal and melodic death metal) and of course thrash metal from every era. We grew up listening to bands like Bolt Thrower, Dismember, Cannibal Corpse, Deicide, Entombed, At The Gates, Slayer, Pantera, Sepultura, Dissection, Morbid Angel and many others. So I think we mix both death metal and thrash metal, in old school and modern modes naturally in our music because we simply love it!

I.M: What is the concept behind “Preaching Venom”? (or ideas behind the lyrics, etc)?

Barney: It basically speaks about those people in higher authority who use their power to influence and brainwash the innocent into wrong doings. It kind of explains that not everyone out there is as good as they may seem to be in the public eye!

I.M: How do you think the band has evolved from your formation in 1999 to the current status of the band in 2009? Why did it took almost 10 years to release your first full-length album?

Barney: Well we only put out our first E.P in 2004 which was called “Human Chaos” after that all the band members were studying in university so while studying we would keep the band going on too as much as possible. It was obviously very had to balance our life’s around trying to play gigs as much as possible and also trying to keep the band together while being in university. We began writing ideas down for Preaching Venom for the last 3 years and finally when we felt we had some strong music arranged we decided to go into the studio. We took our time because it was necessary, we wanted to work with the right people and we wanted to leave our mark with this record. There was no other band based in the Middle East who took music as serious as we did, so we felt we will do the impossible and put out a death metal album of an international quality!
Now after listening to “Preaching Venom” you will notice how much we have grown as song writers and the natural progression in our music. The band today is as strong as ever with the current line-up, we feel very proud to have each other and be able to tour and play our music to a new crowd night after night.

I.M: Will the band go and explore in other genres of metal for future releases? Any metalcore albums from Nervecell in the near future?

Rami: I don’t think we will be changing our style and defiantly no metalcore hehe! Not that there’s anything wrong with metalcore, I personally listen to some metalcore bands, but our style will remain death/thrash metal. We are working on some new ideas and at the moment the direction is the same, but with it will be more brutal, thrashy and technical.

I.M: How is the metal scene in genera; in the United Arab Emirates?, is it growing?, how about in other Arab countries?

Barney: Yeah it is growing…slowly but surely. In Dubai there has always been trends going on but in other countries like Lebanon, Egypt, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia there has been a certain number of bands who have started to get serious and put out quality albums etc. We hope that from our work other bands around us will be motivated and encouraged to keep metal alive!

Rami: The metal scene in the UAE and Dubai specifically is good, I mean it’s better than other scene’s in the Middle East. There are gigs every now and then, with the annual Dubai Desert Rock Festival which is based in Dubai – it’s like the Wacken Open Air of the Middle East, bands like Iron Maiden, Megadeth, Testament, Sepultura and more came to the Middle East because of Desert Rock Festival. So it’s pretty cool! I think it is growing at a good rate compared to the other Arab countries around. In Egypt there’s a good scene, Lebanon and Syria too, but mostly underground and there are some troubles there with organizing shows, so overall with all the obsticales I think the metal scenes in these countries are rather doing good!

I.M: Any touring planned in the US in support of the new album?

Barney: Hell yeah we would love to. I know our management is working on something for us at the moment to play there in early 2010 so we will just have to wait and see.

I.M: How has the internet (myspace, etc) and technology (cheaper recording tools) impacted how you promote your band?  What have been the advantages and disadvantages of this?

Rami: When Nervecell started we never relied on the internet. We did it the old way, playing constant shows, I mean we played with punk bands, metal bands, jazz bands, all in order to spread our name and music. It was really the way forward. At a later stage, we decided to make a website and I was so surprised to realize that there was no other band in Dubai which had a proper website except for us at that time! So we created a simple website, which contains the band’s bio, member’s info, music, photos and other stuff. It was very simple. Of course in time the website got filled with more content, more press, which started coming in locally and internationally from our demo and EP. We grew gradually on the internet. Of course with Myspace, it really helped to present our music and band’s career all in one page. That was an awesome invention and every band has a Myspace page. Our website and Myspace page has helped us present ourselves to the rest of the world not just in Dubai. When we recorded our first demo in 2003, we had 1 song for download and it was great to see all the feedback coming in from just 1 song. When we recorded “Human Chaos” we promoted the EP with 2 songs, and we sent out the CD to international webzines and magazines and got some cool reviews which also helped in bringing more visitors to our website, and download our music and so…But of course we didn’t only rely on the internet, we toured, played more and more shows and with the help of the internet things was evenly balanced. I don’t see any disadvantages from the internet other than illegal downloading, yet this also helps promote bands but harms the music business.

I.M: Again, thanks for the interview, is there anything else you want to add for our readers?

Barney: Well check us out on and, do drop us a line and we hope to catch you all on the road soon. “Preaching Venom” is now out all across stores in Europe through Lifeforce Records so go and check it out. Thanks for all the support!

Rami: Thanks alot for this cool interview!


Recent Image Galleries