30 years after the debut album was released Speckmann Project returns with a crushing sophomore offering entitled “Fiends Of Emptiness”!
A true pioneer of extreme metal, Paul Speckmann co-founded Master in 1983. Two years later the band dissolved, and Deathstrike was formed after a failed search for a guitar player for Master! First Deathstrike, and then Master recorded their influential demos respectively! A recording contract was eventually secured between Master and Nuclear Blast and in 1989 Speckmann (vocals, bass) along with Chris Mittelbrun (guitar) and Bill Schmidt (drums) recorded their debut album in Solid Sound Studios, but things didn’t go quite as planned. “Markus Staiger, the label boss for Nuclear Blast, decided he didn’t like the production of the soon to be released self-titled Master album!”, Paul Speckmann recalls. “So after a few brief conversations it was agreed upon from all parties that we would go to Morrisound Studios in Florida and record the album again, with a new line-up featuring myself, Aaron Nickeas from Abomination on drums and Jim Martinelli from Burnt Offering on guitar, and add some additional songs. Legendary producer Scott Burns produced the new recording and after it was sent to Nuclear Blast it was once again rejected – for being too polished! So in the end Burns remixed the previous recordings from Chicago and that was released as the Master debut album. I felt that it would be a waste to throw out the Morrisound recordings, so this was released as the first Speckmann Project album in 1991."
Three decades have passed and now the time has come for a much awaited follow-up album, this time in collaboration with Swedish death metal-savant Rogga Johansson, known from Paganizer, Ribspreader, Revolting and a myriad of other bands. So what inspired Paul Speckmann to do a second Speckmann Project album in 2021? “Rogga felt that the many collaborations we did with the Johansson & Speckmann project were sadly not given the attention they deserved. Rogga and I have recorded several excellent albums together that have gone mostly unnoticed by the general public! So maybe the press as well as the fans would relate better to the Speckmann name alone”, Speckmann reasons.
The music is written by Rogga while Paul Speckmann has penned all of the lyrics, but the riffs and arrangements are exactly what we’ve come to expect from a pure Speckmann-product. The songs on this album have that thrashing punk-aggression to it and Rogga has clearly learnt how to write in a style that very well mimics the old-school fury of the early Speckmann-works. “Rogga is an excellent and experienced songwriter, but as for being a mimic in this sense, I must explain”, Speckmann acclaims. “When Rogga approached me regarding this revival project, it was basically in name only. What I mean is that Rogga said he would write an old school record for me to sing. In my opinion, Kam Lee, Chuck Shuldiner, and I took the anvil and forged the way for a new genre of music, influencing the Scandinavians, the British, as well as the Americans with this new direction. So obviously the influences of early death metal – as they went on to call it – are here, but the songs are shorter and to the point where the first Speckmann Project release had some long and and drawn-out lengthy tracks!”
Three decades may have passed, but as far as lyrical themes not much has changed according to Paul Speckmann. “The themes are always the same in all the bands that I am involved in; anti-religion, anti-government and genuinely just believing in yourself and trusting your own instincts! I believe in freedom, although as the years go by steps are being continually taken to these freedoms and turn the world into machines working for the betterment of the wealthy and influential!”
With the first album having such an elaborate origin story, one might wonder how “Fiends Of Emptiness” was recorded and came into being? “We recorded the album rather quickly. Rogga always surrounds himself with the best musicians so he found the additional killer players, Kjetil Lynghaug (solo guitar) and Jon Rudin (drums), and recorded with them Then he sent me the completed recordings and I entered Shaark Studios here in the Czech Republic and recorded the vocals with the lyrics I had written. I usually sing two songs per week over a six week period. Then the mixes are done in Norway and we discuss the mixes and take it from there! I hope one day to be able to record the complete project together in a studio in Sweden. Fingers crosses that this will one day come to fruition!”
The second Speckmann Project album, entitled “Fiends Of Emptiness”, will hit the airwaves like a sledgehammer in 2022 and according to Paul Speckmann we will not have to wait another 30 years for the next one after that! “I have signed a contract for two releases with Emanzipation in Denmark and off-shoot of the Target Group! So in 2023 we will record yet another release!”
01. Absolute Power
03. A Sick Carnival
04. Destroy The Weak
05. The Stall
06. The Corporate Twisted Control
07. Fiends Of Emptiness
08. The Victims In Silence They Lay
09. The So-Called Tyrants
10. A Diabolical Sense Of Proportions
12. Then The Calm Before The Storm
13. Through Darkness
Paul Speckmann - Vocals
Rogga Johansson - Guitars, Bass
Kjetil Lynghaug - Lead Guitars
Jon Rudin - Drums