[INTERVIEW] Victim Mentality
Our INDIE Spotlight falls next on Victim Mentality. Formed in Seoul in 2009, the group play a fun 80s-inspired mix of heavy and glam metal.
The line up of Victim Mentality has changed over the years, but with vocalist Krocodile being a consistent presence their spirit has never changed. 2016 sees Krocodile alongside bass player Skorpion, who has been with the group since 2013 when they started performing live; and new addition guitarist, Die-Amond.
Victim Mentality embrace the wardrobe that fits their sound, paying homage to the heyday of their genre; with frontman Krocodile often brandishing a bullwhip whilst delivering his powerful vocals. Since 2013 the group have gathered much momentum, and quickly won over fans.
With festivals such as Seoul’s Green Plugged Festival, Incheon Pentaport Rock Festival and South by Southwest (SXSW) under their belts they’re already impressing audiences around the world.
April 2015 saw the release of their first full length album Heavy Metal is Back. The album is an impressive offering full of tracks titled in true glam metal fashion. Thirteen track album Heavy Metal is Back, begins with a minute long musical intro, titled Erection, which sets the tone for what is to come. Solid power ballad, Pubic Lice, embodies the feelings of original genre greats. Girl Group takes on elements of 80s electronica; I Still Love You presents another impressive power ballad; and album closer Heavy Metal is Back includes impressive use of gang vocals to prove that “Heavy Metal Is Back!”.
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Victim Mentality has this week returned with their single I Hate Hiphop. Next week will see the group representing South Korea’s diverse sound alongside acts such as Zion T, and Mamamoo, at SXSW in Austin, Texas.
Whether back home in South Korea, or paying shows abroad, Victim Mentality has only one mission – to show everyone that “Heavy Metal Is Back!” We spoke to frontman Krocodile, to find out more about their music, their style, and gigging around the world; and we get the feeling he’s more than a little familiar with the deadpan sarcasm us Brits love so much.
Victim Mentality has changed over the past few months, can you introduce the group to UnitedKpop?
Hi, we’re the glam metal band Victim Mentality from Korea. I’m the group’s frontman and my name is Krocodile, Skorpion is our bassist, and Die-Amond is our guitarist.
How would you describe Victim Mentality and your music to anyone unfamiliar with your work?
There are people who aren’t familiar with our work? That seems incredibly wrong to me. My advice is to Google us or find us on YouTube right away and then pretend you already knew all about Victim Mentality.
Glam metal isn’t exactly a genre still making waves, its heyday being in the 80s, what led to you start playing in that genre?
What? I thought it was very hot and new these days and that is why I started a glam metal band!
Stage names are a commonality in your genre. Is there any particular reasoning behind your chosen names, and/or your band name?
My mom made my name.
You’ve played a whole host of festivals in Korea and overseas in the past year, and you’re playing SXSW again this year. What has been your most memorable festival moment?
Last year at SXSW, during one of our gigs I said “Let me see your boobs” and a woman flashed us. That was pretty memorable because things like that hardly ever happen in Asia.
Do the reactions to your music and style differ between Korean crowds and overseas ones?
Many other bands have said it is different, but in our case the reactions are very similar. Audiences everywhere fall in love with Victim Mentality when they see us.
It wasn’t at all a secret that the genre went hand in hand with a ‘Rock n Roll’ lifestyle in the 80s. Does the Victim Mentality stage persona continue on into your daily life?
Absolutely. We live simple and ordinary lives just like onstage. We never drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes or pot. And we go to church on weekends. In fact, Krocodile once wanted to be a priest.
What is the most ‘Rock n Roll’ thing Victim Mentality have done?
We picked trash up off the street and put it in the trash can.
How did Victim Mentality recruit Die-Amond?
He is a very powerful guitarist in Korea. We were introduced to him by an acquaintance. I am glad we are together now.
You started out without a drummer, so has the transition to a drummer-less three member unit been an easy one for you? Or have you faced any difficulties over the past few months?
We are playing with a session drummer right now while looking for a full-time drummer for the band. There are tons of people who want to be part of Victim Mentality so it is not that hard to find new members. But I want to find talented musicians who can play with us for a long time.
What does the future hold for Victim Mentality?
We’ll be playing more festivals in Korea and overseas and will appear on some TV programs so 2016 will be a busy year for us. And we’ll be releasing a new single on March 10 called “I Hate Hiphop” as well. I’d like for us to do a US tour in 2017 too.
I hate Hiphop is Victim Mentality’s first release with guitarist Die-Amond.
Why would you suggest the readers of UnitedKpop listen to Victim Mentality?
We’re the most vicious glam metal band so be sure to remember our name – Victim Mentality. When you become rich, invite us to your event, your company, your school, etc. and pay us! We will show you the true meaning of chaos!
Are you off to Google Victim Mentality and pretend you knew about them already?
You won’t be disappointed!
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