Insane - About Hungarian metal and more…
So when Buzzin Hornet and I were in Hendrik-Ido Ambacht to visit the Hungarian metallers from Insane, we got the opportunity to talk the their vocalist, Oszkár Knapp, right after their show. It turned out to be a nice conversation about typical Hungarian things and more…
Hey, how are you?
Only because of this tour in Holland?
No, not actually this tour. More because of this day. Because we did two concerts today. In between we had to drive 200 kilometres and I had too much beer so that kinda does it.
Please introduce yourself and your band to those unfamiliar with Insane?
Hi, I’m Oszkár, my band is called Insane…I don’t know how to introduce them, they’re all fucking assholes hehehe! No seriously, this band is really about friendship. We’re respecting each other and I think nowadays it’s kind of a treasure to have such good friend in one group. We’re going through all the good and the bad things together without hitting each other in the face and it’s really unbelievable that we made it already seven years so far.
How’s the tour in Holland going so far?
We’ve felt really cool here. We have a really cool promoter, he’s from Bajvan – Agency. He’s a really cool guy and he really likes Hungarian bands. He organized these great gigs and it’s going pretty well.
How is the crowd responding to Insane, do they seem to know you a bit already?
No, actually don’t know anything about us. But we don’t think that’s bad. It’s good to go out and play for different people every night. And of course there’s always a lot of people who say: “This is crap!” but we don’t care about them. We care about the people who like us. And it’s a really good people when you know that every time there’s more people that like your music.
What was the weirdest or funniest thing that happened to you on tour?
Haha! There are lots of them! Actually there was this mini tour going on in the beginning of last year. We toured some countries in Europe, like Germany, Tsjech Republic and Croatia. The first gig of that tour was in Slovenia. And the morning after the gig, we wanted to leave but there was a problem with the van. The battery was low but we solved the problem so we could continue. But then, in the middle of Germany, in the middle of nowhere, somewhere on the highway the van stopped and we were like: “What the fuck should we do now?!” Then we tried to reach the nearest gas station to find new batteries but we couldn’t find ‘em anywhere. So that was kinda hard for us you know, it was also fucking cold outside. Anyway, we called a trailer, they took us to a gas station and gave us a new battery. So, problem solved! Off we went again! And then again, in the middle of the night, it was fucking snowing outside, we stopped again! So the police came by and tried to help us. Then we had to sleep at another gas station (of course we didn’t sleep one minute) but our van was made and we could continue again. Well…not much later we stopped again, in Tsjech Republic, in Prague, where nobody understood any kind of language so this was really fucked up. So that was a part in our lives where we were asking ourselves: “Why the hell are we doing this anyway?” but we kept going and we’re still here!
As you know Holland is famous because of its coffee shops and legal soft drugs, did you try it yet?
Well yeah, but only one time. I bought some stuff last year but it was too much for me haha! I don’t really smoke weed but instead a drink a lot! It’s good that the weed is legal though!
About ‘King of Fools’, how are the reactions on the album?
In Hungary there were quite some good reactions. And that’s pretty interesting because with our previous albums there were always some negatives things said about it, but now the reactions were all great! Also our album release show was sold out, it was absolutely crazy! So that’s a big chance. And we made it with almost a different band because we have two new guitarist in the band and they really brought some new influences to the music.
And the reactions outside Hungary?
We didn’t get too much information from that. Only a few magazines and webzines, including you of course.
And you used Hardebaran for the promotion here, was it any good?
Ehm well…we’re at the beginning you know. But we sent them about 250 CD’s but actually we don’t know anything about it yet. But I’m not saying anything bad about them because they did promote our album you know. Otherwise you wouldn’t have gotten the album either.
So how did you come up with the cover for ‘King of Fools’, it’s really great! Really catchy!
Well, thanks! Actually our guitarist made it. The idea was a clown with this fool hat on his head and with some kind of crown. So I made a drawing but the others didn’t like it. So I made another one and that was the final one. My opinion is that it could have been better but I’ve heard lots of good reactions on the cover so I’m not saying it’s bad, haha!
Did you ever expect you would break through in the rest of Europe?
It’s really a good thing. When you are in Hungary, telling these stories about Insane playing in Holland, Germany, Switzerland and all the other countries they’re like: “Woooow, how could you do that?!”. Anyway, it’s not such a big thing. You just can’t give up! You have to sit in front of the computer sending hundreds and thousands of emails. That’s all it’s about.
And the company of Andras (vocalist of Superbutt), does it help you?
Yeah! They’re always trading with venues and promoters…
Yeah but I heard that Andras is putting something together for the government (*for the Dutch readers, Andras is putting together which can be compared to the Dutch ‘Conamus’). Does it help Hungarian bands like Insane to play outside Hungary?
Yeah I know that! It’s a goddamn big help! ‘Cause these chances we have right now, were only available the last couple of years when you knew the right persons. You know, the right persons to talk to. But now every band has got a chance. So that’s a great thing!
Do you think the ‘break-through’ has anything to do with other Hungarian metalbands like Subscribe, The Idoru, Superbutt etc?
I hope so! Of course it’s a really big help. But still, you’ve gotta do it yourself! It’s only a small part of the whole thing, but it sure is a big help.
We both love Subscribe…what do you think about them?
Well, we’ve known the guys from Subscribe since we were kids. So we started together. I think we even started in the same year. We did our first concerts together and we’re just really good friends. So if it’s possible we stick together.
What are the chances we’ll have a big European tour with only Hungarian bands like Insane, Subscribe, The Idore, Blind Myself etc?
I don’t know if we could do that. Personally I think it’s better to go on tour alone. Not that we don’t like the other guys but I think it’s better. And of course sometimes we meet each other, even when you don’t expect it. Last time we met Blind Myself and The Idoru in Croatia. Of course we knew they were playing somewhere in Croatia but we played two total different sides so it was a great surprise. But to get back to your question, I think everyone should do their own thing.
Since a lot of metalbands are releasing a DVD these days, can we expect anything on DVD from Insane in the near future?
We’re thinking about it. We always make videos when we’re on tour and there are definitely some funny scenes. So I think we’ll released it in Hungarian but we’ll put English subtitles to it. But I don’t think we’ll do a live DVD or something ‘cause I think we have to grow bigger first.
Not even a gig at the Sziget festival?
Well I don’t think so. Every time we play at Sziget we always get the crappy times. We always play in the middle of the afternoon. Or like Subscribe last year, playing at 3 o’ clock in the morning, that’s another fucked up thing!
What would you like to have on the DVD then?
Behind the scenes footage, music videos and of course some live stuff. But mostly behind the scenes footage.
About the future, have you got any plans for a new album yet?
Yeah, we’re planning the album next year. We have some new songs already. They’re fucking kick ass. One of them is more melodic and the rest is really heavy. But we don’t wanna hurry you know. Because we think there are lots of chances in ‘King of Fools’ already. So it’s probably gonna be somewhere next year.
Tonight you’ve also played some songs that aren’t on the ‘KoF’ album, were those new or old songs?
They’re old songs. We played one song of our very first album and I think it was like two or three songs from our second album.
Is the new album going to be like ‘King of Fools’ or are you guys trying a bit of different direction this time?
We’re thinking about breaking our own edges. So we’re gonna make an album where there’s even a bigger contrast between the melodic stuff and the heavy stuff. So the heavy stuff is going to be much heavier and the melodic stuff much more surprising. So that’s also the reason why we don’t wanna hurry with the next album. We wanna think about the upcoming album a lot. And I definitely like ‘King of Fools’ but afterwards you hear things on the album that now, in the present, you would change.
Ok that was my last question, anything to add to this interview?
Well, to everyone who’s reading this: if you have the talent and if you have the chances, I think you should play music. Because playing music this way is a feeling that nothing else can give you. It’s just unbelievable.
Thanks you guys!