As they begin to celebrate 15 years together, Italian cosmic doom trio Ufomammut find themselves working under two coinciding principles: They always surprise and they’re consistently voraciously forward thinking. Perhaps it’s somewhat less surprising than it might initially seem that eventually these impulses would run into each other. Their Magickal Mastery Tour began this week in Europe, with the band — bassist/vocalist/keyboardist Urlo, guitarist/keyboardist Poia and drummer Vita — putting together a setlist that spans their career from 2000’s Godlike Snake debut all the way up to last year’s mind-expanding Neurot Recordings two-parter, Oro (reviews here and here). The impulse to surprise remains strong.
Ufomammut have had no shortage of triumphs throughout their career to date, whether it’s their landmark 2004 second outing, Snailking, or the growth of their visual-arts enterprise, Malleus as helping bring to life the vivid color and classic form of the European heavy psychedelic underground. From forming their own label, Supernatural Cat, to never failing to refine and develop their sound across 2005’s Lucifer Songs, their 2006 collaboration with Lento, as well as 2008’s Idolum and 2010’s masterpiece, Eve (review here), Ufomammut have continued to go bigger and deeper, creating a psychedelia that’s as crushing tonally as it is atmospheric and influencing countless others in their wake. Their style has never been anything but their own, and as far as I’m concerned, they’re one of the most pivotal and essential acts in heavy music today.
That being the case, as Ufomammut embark on the Magickal Mastery Tour, it seemed reasonable to hit them up for a few brief reflections on their time together these last 15 years, how things have changed for the band and where they might go following Oro. Having interviewed the band before, I know they’re men of brevity and the Q&A certainly follows that course, but two days into the run, here are the remaining Magickal Mastery Tour dates should you be fortunate enough to be someplace in the world that also happens to be in their path:
MAGIKAL MASTERY TOUR DATES:
27 sept – Kulturpalast – Wiesbaden (D)*
28 sept – Het Depot – Leuven (B)*
29 sept – Vera – Groningen (NL)*
01 oct – The Fleece – Bristol (UK)*
02 oct – Brudenell social club – Leeds (UK)*
03 oct – The Underworld – London (UK)*
04 oct – 4AD – Diksmuide (BE)*
05 oct – Römer – Bremen (D)*
06 oct – KB18 – Copenhagen (DK)
07 oct – Blitz – Oslo (NOR) (w/ Tombstones)
09 oct – Luttako – Jväskyla (FIN)
10 oct – Kuudes Linja – Helsinki (FIN) (w/ Suma)
11 oct – Yo Talo – Tampere (FIN)
12 oct – Nuclear Nightclub – Oulu (FIN)
17 oct – Progresja – Warsaw (PL)
18 oct – Bii Nu – Berlin (D)
19 oct – Keep it Low Festival – Munich (D)
*all dates with Zolle in support
The complete Q&A with Ufomammut follows after the jump. Please enjoy.
If you take a look at our records You’ll notice there’s always been an interest in alchemy, magick and supernatural things.
Then I think Ufomammut itself is an alchemic entity, a process that could be only with the three of us and in some way we’re the masters of it…
Then it sounded rad.
How has Ufomammut being in changed for you guys in the last 15 years? Is it easier now or harder?
Ufomammut has become a part of us, it’s like a leg, it’s a constant thought in our minds, is our blood. So it’s not easier or harder, IT IS.
It must be a long time since you’ve played some of the songs you’ll play on this tour. Was there anything you had to go back and relearn after so long?
I think it’s been great to see that while the hands remember, the mind doesn’t…
But after a few times, everything was working again.
And I think we’re gonna play these songs in a new light, they’re what we’re now, so I think we’ve never played like that before.
You’ve always seemed to be the kind of band thinking ahead and working on the next album, etc. Has it been strange for you to stop and think about what you’ve accomplished over the last 15 years as Ufomammut?
No, not strange.
It’s been a challenge again.
And it’s our homage to the people following us.
Will there be a separate celebration for Malleus?
But something easier, maybe just a cake with 15 candles?
Has there been any progress yet on material for the next Ufomammut album? Any chance of some new songs in addition to the old ones on this tour?
We’re just out of Oro.
So there’s nothing new for now.
We’ve been in studio with our friends Incoming Cerebral Overdrive and we recorded some tracks together that will be probably out next year.
We’ll start in working at the next Ufomammut once back from this tour.
Now that you have some distance from it, how do you feel about how Oro came out and about how it was received by fans?
It’s been a great experience and we’re very thankful.
Is there any hope you might bring the Magickal Mastery Tour to the US?
We’re working on it.