Hi, Arif, buddy! How’re you doing? Finally I got an opportunity to know some more about Wormrot))
Hey man. First of all thank you for giving time to create an interview really appreciate it. I’m doing ok at the moment. Just a little exhausted with the day job and my newborn son. Other than that I’m doing just fine thank you for asking.
Recently you’ve become a father! This is a huge event for every man! Do you feel some changes in your life now? Maybe your world views changed?)
Haha indeed my man. It is a huge event that is for sure. There’s definitely culture shock going on with my life. And I mean it in a good way in every sense. It’s a beautiful feeling anyone could ever have. Me and the wife are truly blessed and thankful every single day for this gift. As my views towards the world seems kinda similar to what it was back then, I tend to be a little soft hearted lately. What’s the point of being too angry when all I need to do is to look at my son’s face and all problems solved. The world is going to be the same for what it was, is and forever will be. I care about my own family than the world most definitely. Might sound ignorant to some but I could care less.
Some time ago Fitri left the band. I guess this is a little uncomfortable topic for you, but why did he left Wormrot? Are you looking for new drummer?
It is an uncomfortable question and hence I would not like to discuss it further. From judging on my first sentence, you know it was not a very good break off. As of now we are still looking for a drummer. We’re not going to be dead just because he left the band. Our history and experiences are just too precious personally for me, Rasyid, Azean and our friends across the globe. That’s what matters most.
I understand that you got really tired of questions about band being inactive) Some people just don’t get it how much time and effort you need to devote to your family (especially with a little baby). So my question is a bit different: how many new songs you managed to write during this time? Maybe you did a couple of local gigs and performed new songs there?
I do get that kind of questions on a daily basis. Is Wormrot dead? For now I can say, no we are not. We are in the midst of hunting for a new drummer as soon as possible and get back on track. But you’ll never know if our luck runs out and that’s sadly going to be the end. Fingers crossed. Yeah my priorities has changed every since my son was born. Back then it’s always about the band but life grant you gift you can’t refuse. Me and the wife are still committed to Wormrot ofcourse. We like challenges. If everything is too easy in this world, it will get boring very, very quickly. So far we have quite a few new songs being made. Then again you have to keep in mind that all of these new songs have to start fresh if we found a new drummer. So it’s going to take awhile for us to rise again. That answered your last question too I hope.
Also I know that you’re a huge fan of collectable figures) How many Aliens, Predators etc. you’ve already collected? I’m sure there are so many they don’t fit into your house anymore)))
Hell yeah I’m a huge fan of such collectibles. I used to have quite a number of statues in that line back then. But I cut down to those pieces I really adore. Space is an issue for me most definitely hence why I limit myself with this expensive hobby. Me and the wife are getting our own nest next year. It’s not a huge house but it’s perfect for the 3 of us. So having a massive collection is not really a good idea. My son need space to run and crash haha.
A lot of people wondered about your contract with Earache. It was a considerable event for you, and quite a surprise for me, hehe. How did it turn out? How Earache found you?
Yeah we were shocked too. Especially me. I kept refreshing Myspace inbox as many times as I can to see if it’s a joke or a spam haha. Earache found us through a mix tape online I can’t recall what’s the site name. They were drawn to the song Born Stupid. So they proceed on checking the rest of the tracks on Abuse and contacted us via myspace. Everything went smooth sailing from there and here we are.
Let’s get back to the past and talk about first huge tour of Wormrot. You’ve visited a lot of countries. How did you feel back then (beside really tired;)) when you finally came home?
Good times. Almost a decade ago, we have been touring consistently for 5 years. It is tiring. Getting use to the different life style, food and environment was kinda tough. But we pull it through thanks to all of our friends across the globe who made it easier for us to digest the tour. We put out our best all the time be it in a crowd of thousands or ten. When we finally reach home after 2 months of back to back shows, we were drained. On top of that we have to find jobs right after as we can’t have 2 months leave. Although Rasyid is lucky enough to have an understanding boss.
Arif, what’s your story about how you started to get all this extreme music? What was your very first merch t-shirt? Was it Metallica?)
I remembered back in 1996 my cousin introduced me to Nirvana’s Nevermind album as well as a few Metallica’s classic ride the lightning, and justice and black album. I was very impressed with the aggression and the song writing. A huge fan of Kurt vocals. Start to learn the guitars to play a few of their songs. And when I got in to high school, a school mate of mine introduced to me Pantera, Nile and Cannibal Corpse. And my mind went berserk. Totally in love with the new found anger which probably to me is the most extreme back in the day. I’ve researched for new bands on the same genre and get to know a few more. It’s getting more extreme and brutal as years goes by. Start to form my own band back then playing guitars, and move to drum and now I’m on vocal. My first shirt was Fear Factory Soul of a new machine. Missed that shirt.
Nobody would forgive me if I just pass this topic. Arif, you’re a great artist! I can see that you keep improving with every of your new artwork. Is it self-education, or maybe you took art classes? Also (I hope it’s all right to ask this kind of question) is it your main income?
Thank you for the kind words man means a lot. I was from an art school. Almost had a master’s degree in interior design but I lost interest after I was forced to join the military. I have always been a fan of art. More of dark arts. I was a member of the Devourment Forum back in the day and that was where I get critics and the support to learn and improve myself. Sadly the forum does not exist anymore. I did not have any lessons. Just self taught, observing and study different artist’s styles and method and put it into my own practice. As for main income, no it is not. Although I wish to work full time for Rotworks. Working hard towards achieving the goal. Nothing beats earning doing what you really love. Only time will tell.
What’s motivating you to get up every morning and fight for a place under the sun in this rotten world?
Looking at my wife and son’s sleeping faces and kiss their cheeks every morning before getting off to work makes it worth wild to be in this rotten world as you claim it to be haha.
How often do you get requests from different bands to make front cover for their release? Is it hard to work with such clients? ‘Cause, you know, musicians are pretty complicated people, hehehe)
Recently, it’s not that often I get to do commission artwork as most of my clients are friends and they understand that I am extremely busy with the baby and work. But I am hoping to be in full time with Rotworks and get back on track. Certain clients are pain in the ass and some are probably the most kindest people I have ever met. Clients are always like that be it in art or other industries. But a few percentage are total assholes which I have erased them in my life. They do have to be precise and picky with their needs and I understand that 100%. I will feel the same way if I were to commissioned someone to produce a piece for me. So it’s all good. The only issue I truly hate is when clients tend to delay payments. That really pisses me off huge ass time.
How often grindcore bands from different parts of the world visit your country with a live show? Or maybe it’s pretty much all about your local scene when you talk about gigs in Singapore?
We had a few Grind bands stopping by Singapore for a show. Captain Cleanoff, The Arson Project, Unholy Grave, Misery Index etc. Not that often. Even the local shows are not as active as back in the day. Maybe the fact that we are lacking of space to do shows and the fee is expensive. Also, everyone is busy with their personal commitments. As you know being a Singaporean your life is work, work and work.
If you get a chance to choose your favorite band for split release, who would it be? Who’s your idol?))
I would love to do a split with Converge. I think their song writing is dynamic and varieties throughout every album they put out. Personally I do not have any idols in this genre. They are all great, great bands and friends.
What’s the most lousy beer in Singapore that should never be drunk?)
Amsterdam and Damberger are probably the most horrendous beer I have ever tasted. I do not drink them anymore. I was back then when I was young and stupid just to get wasted. Not sure if they are made in Singapore though. I am older and wiser now and stick to just Tiger or Anchor. haha
Aaaand the final whistle, and my questions are over! Thank you so much for this interview! In conclusion, we also would like to see some words of wisdom for our readers)
Cheers man thank you once again for taking time to get this interview set up. I had a blast. As far as Wormrot goes, wish us luck on finding a drummer and get back to grind. We are thankful to those who wanted to be a part of Wormrot from overseas but we have to be realistic. It’s going to be an ordeal. But Thank you nonetheless. It really means a lot that people are concern towards us. And we will do our best to revive in this rotten world. Heh.
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