Whale Wars, Shark Fin Mafia, Engagement for our enviromnent and of course great, unique music:
You’ve got to listen to those guys: GOJIRA from France are definitely an amazing Metal band with messages and statements. I met singer and guitarist Joseph “Joe” Duplantier and we talked about French Metal, his personal music taste and the engagement for Sea Shepherd.
Interview: Dennis Rowehl / Photo by courtesy of Roadrunner
entertaim.net: Joe, yesterday me and my boys has a small and special Hard’n'Heavy party and we also listened to the French band TRUST. I’m sure you know them but do you also like them?
Joe: I remember, when I was in High School, listening to them and I thought: Wow, they are cool … but now … well, it changed … the funny thing is that we played with them a couple of years ago … it was a reunion, so I don’t know what they are doing right now.
entertaim.net: Wow, this is totally diffent music. Did you support them or did they opened up for you?
Joe: They supported us. (laughing) If I knew this when I was in High School that Trust supported us I would have said … WHAT??!!
entertaim.net: So anyway … how big is Metal in France?
Joe: Well, the scene is not that big but we’ve got lots of bands, especially in the extreme Metal, with a big quality. Last year we played a European tour with two French bands opening for us … super professional bands, super tight! When it’s possible we try to bring French bands on tour with us. I hope the French scene will become bigger.
entertaim.net: What was your first Metal album?
Joe: It was Metallica, “Ride the lightning”. Before this I got some hard stuff like Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Black Sabbath and even before that the heaviest album I got was Dire Straights (laughing) …
entertaim.net: (laughing) Wow, this was really heavy stuff!
Joe: (laughing) I remember listening to Dire Straights and I was impressed cause there was distortion on the guitar. This was something for me. I loved the Beatles and stuff. The first time I listened to Metallica and Maiden I thought it was just noise but my cousin said: No no no, listen closely to the music, you play piano .. listen to this!” So I tried to understand and my taste of music totally changed to Sepultura, Morbid Angel … just in 6 months. I was completely hooked. No Hard Rock, I jumped directly from the Beatles to extreme Metal.
entertaim.net: Especially and of course in France you’re even bigger than Meshuggah. So how many people show up when you’re headlining?
Joe: In Paris we can do 4000 to 5000. In smaller cities 500 … Germany is a hard market. We got amazing reviews in Germany but for some reason we play the smallest shows right here. So it’s always a little bitter for us to come to Germany, but on the other hand it’s always a challenge cause we like to surprise and convince people. Somethimes we think: Let’s forget about Germany (laughing) but maybe we didn’t tour enough right here … The USA is big for us, Scandinavia .. there are good markets and a big potential.
entertaim.net: Maybe you should play the EUROBLAST FESTIVAL in Cologne. There are lots of great bands, djent, technical bands, Math Metal, complex stuff … this could be interesting for your possibly to be headliner!
Joe: Sounds interesting. I’ve never heard about it but I should check this out.
entertaim.net: I read on the websites of Sea Shepherd that they presented your show and that they also have a Sea Shepherd merchandise stand at your shows. Can you tell us more about this cooperation?
Joe: Sure, Sea Shepherd is a very important organisation for protecting whales, dolphins and sharks … and we try to help them. We talk about them alot and we record 4 songs we want to sell on the internet and all the benefits shall go to Sea Shepherd because we think that all the things they are doing are very, very important for the future of our planet. They do something that nobody else is doing, they chase the boats that kill whales and sharks and try to stop them. So we started this relationship with Sea Shepherd and we put out one song with Devin Townsend singing and Frederik Thordendal playing a guitar solo … etc. and we have 3 more songs we working on with Max Cavalera etc. … and 100% of the benefit will go to Sea Shepherd. There are lots of people working on it for free.
entertaim.net: What do you personally think about the international warrent of arrest against Paul Watson?
Joe: There is a battle going on between Sea Shepherd and the international mafia who has a big interest in shark fins. It’s about lots of money. They take the sharks out of the water, cut off the fins and throw the sharks back into the water that they die. It’s so cruel! It’s a big market for shark fin soup in Asia. So most of the sharks disappear from the planet. We really appreciate that there’s an organisation like Sea Shepherd trying to stop this. It’s a very important subject and we as artists have got the responsibility to talk about this and to spread it. People have to be aware about what’s going on. It’s sad that many people just care about themselves, their smart phone etc. … hey, can you please stop your facebook for a while and take notice what’s going on in this world!
entertaim.net: Is there any connection betwen you and Brigitte Bardot?
Joe: No … but we really appreciate what she’s doing for Sea Shepherd. The boat which got her name used to have the name “GOJIRA”. It used to be the fastest ship of the whole planet. When they named it Gojira they told us and we’ve been so proud. But they have to change the name because of Japanese people trying to sue them because of the Godzilla movies …
entertaim.net: Joe, unfortunately time’s up … thank you very much. Good luck with Gojira and also good luck for you and Sea Shepherd.
Joe: Thanks alot. It’s important that the press tells more about Sea Shepherd to get as much support as possible. Thank you very much.