Legacy Mag 2/03

1: Please first of all give us a short band history as I haven't heard of SOULLESS before!

Jim Lippucci: We started this band around 1996. Soon there after we recorded a 10 song demo which we eventually released ourselves on CD. We passed the time playing gigs, trying to promote the CD, and looking for a label. We put out a 3 song demo in 2001 in an effort to get signed. WorldChaos eventually decided they would put out our next full length, and here we are…

Wayne Richards: We formed in the Cleveland area in late 1996 in the spirit of the best of the old 80s thrash bands with some early 90s death metal tossed into the musical mix.

2: Is the name SOULLESS inspired by the classic "Soulless" album of Swedish death metal oldies Grave?

JL: Not really but yes.

WR: No…possibly….yes.

3. How did a US-band get a deal with a Japanese label? What do you expect from this cooperation? Have there been any other labels interested?

JL: We had some interest in the US but no solid offers. WorldChaos is a very cool label that puts out great thrash. I think we go very well together.

WR: We sent them some of our stuff and they signed us. We have already received excellent support and promotion for the album from Worldchaos Production. A plethora of labels received our 3 song promo, but few labels were interested in putting out this record. Now that the record is out, a certain label has expressed interest in licensing the record here in the United States.

4. How about your influences? What bands inspired you for SOULLESS? Are Swedish bands a big influence of you?

JL: I love Sodom, Kreator, Destruction, these bands made some of the best music ever. These days I can’t help but love all the pissed Swedish bands…Centinex, The Haunted, Carnal Forge…I have to wonder what’s going on in that corner of the globe…

WR: Metallica, Slayer, Kreator, Sodom, Celtic Frost, Voi Vod, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Motorhead, Black Sabbath, Razor, Entombed, Dismember, At the Gates. The Swedes play the best metal.

5. I would say that SOULLESS is definitely more Thrash as Death Metal? Do you agree? Are you standing closer to the Thrash Metal scene or do you hate it to be categorized?

JL: We love thrash music. Sometimes it’s difficult to categorize these things though…everyone has an opinion. It is thrash with some death elements I think.

WR: We are definitely a thrash metal band. We draw some death metal influence as well, but primarily we rage with pounding thrash!

6. Where did you record "Agony's Lament"? Are you satisfied with the production?

JL: We recorded the album at the Mars Studio in the desolate farmlands outside of our home town of Cleveland, Ohio. I think it is one of the best studios to record metal here in the US. We’ve known the engineer for a long time, and he has recorded many great metal bands. We were very happy with the production. Everything turned out more or less as we had hoped, although there was never enough chicken. Hopefully we’ll have a bigger budget for the next album.

WR: We are absolutely overjoyed and thoroughly pleased with the outcome of this record.

7. What can you tell me about the lyrics - are they important in your concept? Please give me some insights about the topics you're dealing with.

JL: The lyrics I had written before we adopted the name Soulless were somewhat grim, which inspired the name to some extent. The lyrics were, in turn, very much inspired by the music which was desperate, angry and forlorn. The lyrics cover many topics, from fears and emotions to reflections on the sad state of man. I get angry at much in the world, from the actions of the lost human filth around me, intoxicated by the numbing liquor that is religion and Jerry Springer, to our own inability to treat our fellow humans in a respectful, decent fashion. Sometimes I get a beer, and it is very warm or smells like an ass… This also makes me very upset. All of these things end up in the lyrics.

8. Where do you come from in the states? Tell me something about your surrounding area. Is it a fertile ground for metal or are you something like lone riders? How many gigs did you play in your career?

JL: We hail form Cleveland, Ohio which I suppose is in what they would call the northeastern portion of the United States Midwest. Cleveland has a somewhat large urban center which gives way to miles of cookie cutter suburban homes which eventually converge onto wooded areas, smaller towns and even some farms. There is a somewhat active scene here. You may have heard of yesteryear thrashers Destructor or Purgatory. Now we spend time with the likes of Nunslaughter, Somnus, Spawn of Satan, Manticore and Descend to name a few. We try to play as many shows as possible…I’m not sure how many we’ve played together…

WR: Cleveland, OH. I’m guessing we have probably played about 40-50 shows in the 6 years we’ve been together.

9. How old are you guys, what are you doin beside the music?

JL: I am very old. I have a horrible job and make no money. Besides this band I have no life. Next question.

WR: Jim is 33 (the wisest and eldest), I am 26 (the youngest and hottest), and the other 3 fellows are in between us at 27, 29 and 30. I am a painter

10. Is it your highest goal to get a deal with a European metal-label like Nuclear Blast, Century Media and so on or do you prefer it to stay a while in the underground? How high is your motivation to become bigger?

JL: We just want to get our music into stores where people can buy it, hopefully with the support of a label that would do their part to support it. I personally hope to have my own show like Ozzy some day. In preparation, I have been consuming large quantities of drugs and alcohol for several years now. I hope to achieve new heights in alcohol and drug abuse soon.

WR: As long as we have a label that will give us the best promotion possible, the financial support to continue putting out records and eventually tour support, we will be pleased. Eventually we would love to tour Europe and have some money come out of this band, but for now we will continue doing what we can to promote “Agony’s Lament.”

11. How satisfied are you with "Agony's Lament"? Are you now objective enough to see where you can improve things in the future?

JL: We are very happy with the album. We took our time and made sure it was just as we wanted. We are very confident with our direction towards the future. As far as being objective, we are all very critical of each other. No one hesitates to shut any one down at any moment.

WR: This album is really our first step in becoming what we desire to become. It is a solid thrash album and we are pleased with the outcome. There is little that we could have improved upon to make this a better record, and based upon a majority of the responses we have gotten there is little room for improvement. We will continue making quality thrash records.

12. Did you already write new material?

JL: Wayne seems to always be writing new material. When he’s not rockin’ out in one of Ohio’s many Coffee houses with his band Goosebread or heatin’ up the neanderthal nether regions of some cave bitches with prehistoric punishers Caveman, he’s right there with some rippin’ new thrash riffs and a twelve pack of inexpensive domestic ale.

WR: I like Bass Ale as well. We have two new songs and are presently working on a third. We are still waiting on lyrics though.

13. How about the structures of Worldchaos prod.? Do you enjoy some good distribution? Are there maybe plans for some gigs in Japan?

JL: I don’t know much about the operations of WorldChaos, but I must say they kick ass. They’re getting this shit out there. We hope to go to Japan soon, but it’s very expensive...I think it’s very likely.

WR: The record has been out less than two months and we have been getting outstanding promotion from Worldchaos and a great response from all over the world. Distribution is about to explode in the States and already we have good distribution in the European market. We plan to play in Japan within the year.

14. If you had a free decision to go on tour with three bands. Which three bands would you choose?

JL: That would depend… if you’re thinking realistically probably Nunslaughter, Centinex and King’s-Evil. That would kill the whole planet. If you’re thinking like total fantasy kinda shit, then probably “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath” era Sabbath, Iron Maiden and Judas Priest (pre-Ripper). Everyone would hate us.

WR: Voi Vod, Razor and Soulless U.S./Canada tour. The Haunted, Centinex, Soulless European tour. Iron Maiden, Slayer, Soulless World Tour. These tours are likely to happen in the near future.

15. What do you know about the German metal scene? Which German bands do you like?

JL: Fleshcrawl is very cool. Very good old bands, Tankard, Vendetta, Exhumer, of course Sodom, Kreator, Destruction…

WR: Old German thrash as previously mentioned also Erosion, Deathrow, Hammerschmitt…

16. What are your plans for 2003?

JL: Many shows, in the US and overseas, beyond that I have no plans…

WR: Soulless will Thrash in many places and spread the word of metal!

17. Any last words?

JL: Please check out our site, www.soullessdomain.com and the WorldChaos site, www.world-chaos.com. Horns to the Heavens!!!

WR: You’re in the right place if there’s some metal in your face.

Thanks for the interview and good luck with SOULLESS in the future.
Greetings Patrick Schmidt of Legacy Mag./Germany