Interview with Victor “Chuck” Rascal from Alcoholic Vortex

Interview with Victor “Chuck” Rascal from Alcoholic Vortex
Interviewed by William Ribas

Hi everyone. It’s Victor Augusto here. My long-time brother of reviews, Mr William Ribas, has an incessant desire to discover new underground bands and he showed me this amazing Thrash Metal band from the city where I live (Brasília, the capital of Brazil), a few weeks ago. It is funny because he lives in a city distant from here and he is still able to do things like it.

William has already joined Ever Metal twice before for interviews and for his 3rd time appearance, he could talk with The Brazilian Thrashers Alcoholic Vortex, who has just released their first EP “Space Traumas Part I: The Alcoholic Menace”. This album explores the amazing story of a guy called Warren Jackson, who was abducted when he was going to a Heavy Metal concert, and he ended up in Cosmic war with aliens’ conspiracies. Interesting, isn’t it? So, thanks Williams for making this interview possible, also the vocalist/bassist Victor “Chuck” Rascal for taking part. 

William Ribas: Well, usually bands or projects are born from dreams and the desire to play with friends and destroy on stage. Alcoholic Vortex is based on this principle, but it almost didn’t happen. Tell us a little about the band’s first steps.  

It’s true. Well, it all starts there in 2021 and I had already thought about Alcoholic Vortex, but as a project only. I started working on some ideas. A friend of mine finished the logo art and when things seemed going well, my world was turned upside down. I caught Covid-19 and I had to be intubated, staying between life and death, and the story almost ended right there. With the uncertainties of recovery, I had to leave the band Axecuter (band from Curitiba / PR) that I had been playing for 5 years and then I moved to Brasilia. When I got better, I looked for local musicians here who were up for this idea, I found Marc Lizzy (guitars) and Xenomorfo (drums) who agreed and the chemistry was amazing right away, when we played at the first rehearsal and it already seemed that we could get out of there straight up to the stage.

Your music is based on Thrash Metal that “flirts” a bit with Crossover. It’s a kind of music that makes us immediately bang our heads. Who are the heroes or those guys who inspired you?

Surely there are many heroes who, in these many years of heavy music, influence us without asking permission to enter in our lives, but, if I were to name a few I would say Kreator, Slayer, Municipal Waste, Havok, Exodus, Sodom, Testament, Carcass, Annihilator… We can stay here all day (laughs).

How did the concept to create Warren Jackson’s story come about?

During my recovery process from Covid, I had several weird dreams, which took place in space. I put together some aspects that I dreamed up and put together the puzzle of the story. But a curiosity about the name Warren Jackson, is that in 1999, a few days before Iron Maiden announced the return of Bruce Dickinson and Adrian Smith, I had a dream that a guitarist named Warren Jackson had joined the band and that name never left my mind.

“Space Trauma” is like a precise and short shot from a gun. We have 5 songs and are just over 15 minutes long. The journey through space in this first part ends in ‘Apocalypse Envoy’. How is the process of continuing the story going? 

We already have part II finished and we are working on writing part III. The idea is to make the last adjustments and go into the studio to record part II. We had a setback with the injury to our talented skateboarder Marc Lizzy, which delayed the process a little bit. But we can say that soon, very soon, we will know what happened to Warren and the people of Nebulla.

You’ve just said that we’re going to have two more parts of the Warren Jackson saga. Why did you decide to split the whole story into three different releases?

The reason is to make it easier to work in the studio, also it is already part of this new music industry strategy of several short and more constant releases.

I would like you to make a brief comment about each track of the album.

‘Drunken Beasts’ – An instrumental track where we tried to use (and abuse) harmonies between the guitars and riffs that symbolise the ritual of preparation for a Metal show.

‘Alcoholic Vortex’ – It was the first song we did. A “Testament / Exodus” song. It tells the first chapter when Warren goes to a metal show, enjoys the music and few drinks, but when he is on the way back home, he is abducted.

‘Space Surfing’ – I think on this track more as a Heavy / Thrash, resembling Annihilator’s music. It tells the next steps of the abduction, when Warren is on the ship and they inject something into his body. Then, the security systems fail, and he escapes from the ship in an Escape Pod.

‘The Way to Nebulla’ – A Thrash song with hints of Slayer, Kreator, and Municipal Waste. Warren, in the Escape Pod, has time to think about the road to Nebulla, rambling on about the last hours of his life, contemplating space, and fearful of what lies ahead.

‘Apocalypse Envoy’ – I would say that it is the heaviest song of Part I. Warren arrives in Nebulla, is well received and welcomed, but suddenly Nebulla is struck by a mysterious Pandemic, which disrupts his plans to return home.

What would be Warren’s traumas in space? 

I can’t say much without giving spoilers (laughs), but this name comes precisely from his sudden and unusual adventure that generates deep traumas. And a little bit of this is like my history with Covid. It was 8 days intubated that for me were seconds, like a cut from when I arrived at the emergency room until the psychologist talking to me when I woke up. It’s as if I were close to a very strong gravitational field (same case as Warren) and that caused this time variation, as in the twin paradox, where the brother who stays on Earth is older and for the one who travelled in space little time action suffered. So, I’d say that question should be answered at the end of Part III when Warren’s story wraps up (or doesn’t).

Victor Augusto brought me this question here. Apparently, the band’s quality sound captivated the audience very quickly, even with you already participating in important festivals and concerts in Brasília / DF as Slam Fest. How have you been feeling being so well received in your local scene in such a short time?

We participated in Slam Fest, organised by our great friend and underground force from Brasilia, Fellipe CDC from the band Death Slam. We did some really cool shows like Unleash The Bastards with Evil Invaders (Belgium) and my friends from Flagelador, from Rio de Janeiro / São Paulo, among others. The reception has been very nice since we played for the first time, it’s great to know that people like our music and that in a way it impacts even if only slightly, in your daily life. Certainly, we only have a lot to thank for the reception and continue working to deliver more material.

We know that the album has just been released, but how is the repercussion in the media?

The feedback has been very good, not only here in Brazil but abroad. People from Europe, the United States, Canada and Central America have asked to release the material in their countries, which I think is very cool. Heavy Metal always overcomes barriers and that’s wonderful whenever it happens.

Nowadays it’s not enough just to record the songs and release good materials. Bands need to have this virtual side. How do you see this new way of working within music?

Of course, it is always a constant learning. In my time as a teenager, we exchanged tapes and letters. Nowadays, all this experience is done through social media, and it is almost instantly. You have to know what the language is, what is the best way for the algorithm to distribute your content and this requires a lot of time and study to know how it works. I say that we are still in our “childhood” about it, but we are going to learn more and more.

If you guys were kidnapped into space and had to show a single song of your band to the extraterrestrial, what would it be? And why?

Wow, difficult, but I would show ‘The Way to Nebulla’, because it has almost everything I like in Thrash Metal. It represents a good slice of what I think and like about this style. And since this is important to me, I see it as a beautiful exchange of experiences with a being from another world.

Finally, what are the next steps for the Alcoholic Vortex?

The next steps are in the recording of part 2 and finalization of part 3. Soon, we will be releasing the band’s YouTube channel where we will have more details and video material of this story. The idea is to assemble complementary materials to the experience of the songs. Also, we will soon have our store with shirts and other very cool merchandise. And finally, to do shows, we have some invitations and conversations to take Alcoholic Vortex beyond other cities and states.

Thank you for the interview, the final space is all yours.

First of all, I would like to thank Ever Metal for the space, the questions and the willingness to bring Heavy Metal material to Metalheads from all over the world. I would also like to say that we are happy with the repercussions of our work. We would also like to let you know that we are open to releasing physical material. If you know someone who wants to release our physical material in your country, let us know!

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