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Interview : Sobernot
Sobernot is a groove metal band from Santiago, Chile. They make music with catchy riffs, clean and harsh vocals that speak about social issues, dark humor, and gore. They have a loyal fan base and have played with big international bands like Exodus and Hirax.
- César “VAIGOR” Vigouroux - Lead vocals
- Pablo “CHESPI” La'Ronde - Guitar & Vocals
- Joaquín “YAKLS” Quezada - Bass
- Piero “PYRO” Ramírez – Drums
This Day in Metal: Where did your name come from? What's the story behind that name?
Pablo: Just as it reads “Sober”, “not”. The story behind the name origins in that one day I was watching a documentary called Omit the Logic, about Richard Pryor’s life, an American comedian. And the words “sober” and “not” kept coming in the film. So, that combination of words stuck in my head, and as we needed urgently a band’s name, we used that. It was quick and fortunate.
TDIM: What are your musical influences? And if you can collaborate with any musician, in the future, who would you choose?
Joaquín: I’ve always thought that Sobernot is a very strong cocktail (laughs). Each member has a story and favorites, so we try to incorporate that into our music. We have influences like Metallica, Pantera, Testament, Annihilator, Megadeth, Anthrax, Cannibal Corpse, and Lamb of God, that suit well with our music catalog. But the fans always surprise us by finding similarities with other bands that are not direct influences on us, even though there’s a particular affinity (laughs), like Armored Saint and Faith No More, among others.
César: If I could collaborate with a musician in the future, my preferences would be Jeff Waters, Alex Skolnick, Rob Halford, or Chuck Billy.
Pablo: I would also include on that list, of collaborative wishes, Tobias Forge.
TDIM: Can you tell us about your creative process? Are there any other art forms or mediums that inspire your music or have influenced your creative process?
Joaquín: Usually “Chespy” comes with the skeleton of the song, it amazes me how many riffs he has saved on his sleeve. And then with “Pyro” while we’re putting the song together, each of us continues adding things, so the song continues to develop throughout the rehearsals. Last “Chespi” and “Vaigor” work on the melody and vocal line to give the song its final touches.
Our lyrics come, mostly, from personal experiences, anecdotes, and jokes. They are also inspired by cinema and television. Many songs from the Destroy album, come from movies and series that we love.
TDIM: Do you enjoy playing live? What has been your favorite show? Is there any particular song, that you enjoy the most playing live?
Joaquín: I will always remember the phrase: “the band is better live than in their albums” and I think it fits perfectly with Sobernot. For us, the live show is the most important thing. The idea is that the fans go to see a show, and they leave marveled by the music and for what is entertaining: visuals, lights, and the total delivery of the band, because we act as if it were the last show of our lives. That is our motto.
Since I was younger, my favorite part of being a musician is being able to be up on the stage and headbang until death (laughs). I hope to have the same energy until my 70s.
My favorite show was in January 2018, in the ex-Lemmy Bar (in Santiago, Chile). It was the switch that took the band to the next level, thanks to the audience's reaction. That’s why that show was special.
Other unforgettable presentations were the ones with Exodus, Hirax, and At War (the Thrash Old True show), where everything worked out like a Swiss clock. And, of course, the release show of the Destroy album, which I consider to be one of our best performances for the energy that was involved and the bond that was formed with the audience. You could be a witness of that experience, because the show was recorded, and it will be released in the future.
TDIM: What is your dream tour?
César: A tour across Europe, playing with bands like Annihilator, Testament, Anthrax, Megadeth, Lamb of God, or Metallica. We think that with any of those big bands, it would be an incredible synergy between what we do and what the audience expects to hear. And if this tour includes shows in European Festivals like Wacken, Hellfest, Download, and Rock am Ring, we wouldn’t be able to ask for more.
TDIM: It's been one year since the release of your second album, Destroy. How is your sound changed or evolved over time? And what sort of influences brought about that change?
Pablo: No doubt that this record had a special worry in regard to its composition, execution, and performance. Contrary to the first album, Aurt, which was self-produced with all the mistakes from the lack of experience.
In Destroy, we took the necessary time so that the final product was just as we expect it. We recorded with Franco Gabelo, engineer and co-producer, who understood perfectly what we wanted. There was a lot of focus and work, and also it was in the middle of the pandemic, so there were unique conditions that resulted in the album we made.
Another important point about this album is that it was financed by our fans. So, the only pressure we had was not to let them down, and deliver them the best album we could make. That challenged us in putting more effort into the sound, execution, and performance of the new songs. I feel that after Destroy, Sobernot has reached a higher step in every aspect and has opened a clear path to which we want to go in our next work.
TDIM: Is there anything else you would like to tell your fans and the people that feel the curiosity to hear you? Any upcoming albums or shows?
César: Listen to Sobernot every time you need energy to do something difficult or when you feel angry or simply when you want to move your feet to the sound of a good groove. If you like groove, old-school metal, and progressive with a modern sound, Sobernot is for you. And if you like our music, spread the word to your friends.
Joaquín: If you want to have a good time, go to a Sobernot show, you won’t regret it. We will close the year 2023 with the release of the live show we did of Destroy. It will be released on all audio platforms, YouTube, and maybe a unique edition, for our most loyal fans. Besides, we’re preparing special shows, for what is left of this year, and we’re also working on a possible tour across our country for the summer, and, on new songs for the successor of Destroy, so… auuuuuuuuurt!
Finally, we would like to thank This Day In Metal for the space given to us. And also, we say hi to all of your readers and invite them to follow us on our social media and discover our music. And we hope that your necks react to Sobernot.
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