Metal Orison a Metal band from the darkest regions of Africa.  Formed in Botswana in 1991 
from a common love for Metal, consisting of four guys: Spencer (Guitar & Vox), Hornby 
(Guitar), Santos (Bass) and Wacks (Drums).  No one in the band could play any instruments 
when they formed but they were totally dedicated and learnt to play 'on the job'.  The band 
immediately began writing their own songs, much to the disappointment of the people at their
 shows who weren't interested in songs they didn't know.

Wacks (Drums) left the group in 1993 and was replaced by Jackee Dee.  Hornby left soon 
afterwards and no suitable replacement was found, thus the Metal Orison "three piece" was 
formed.  A demo was recorded, which is still played on a local rock program.  Spencer left 
for studies in America from '95 to mid '97, but the band is finally back together.

This is an interview conducted by Lunatic, with the help of Sentah the bands "Session Death 
Voice" and Manager. The interview was conducted shortly after the bands first appearance 
in South Africa at an outdoor Metal gig at "Route 59" along with popular local bands like 
Gutted Remains, Groinchurn & Sacrifist.  This interview is slightly longer than the published 
version, as this version has not been shortened for publication.

SENTAH: The first question goes to Spencer the lead guitarist of the band.

CRUSADER: What is it like being a Metal band in a country like Botswana? What's the 
Metal support like? Do you get to play many gigs?

SPENCER: Well its not as good as one would like it to be. The fact that, you know, Botswana 
is a small country. A small population, you know, but we do have a couple of gigs around here. 
We've got a good following of some guys who really like Metal you know, and like I was 
saying that it's not as we would like it to be because of the small support that we have, most of it 
being because that we are a small country, but I mean we do this because we like Metal, so 
there's nothing we can do, just to play

SENTAH: thank you Spencer. Let's hear from Santos. (no answer from Santos, he seams to be 
very busy with something else). Second question, Spencer, the Bassist seems to be very 
reluctant to say a word, he's making some other thing.

CRUSADER: How did you enjoy playing in South Africa? I noticed the people had a "lets see" 
attitude, but right after the show everyone was very positive about your music, suddenly 
everyone wanted your demo.

SPENCER: It's cool playing in South Africa because first you are playing in front of people 
who like Metal, unlike here in Botswana. You know some people just come because there is a 
band playing and sometimes they don't like it, sometimes they think it's just too noisy for 
them, but in South Africa you know you are going to play right in front of people who are into 
Metal, so you know, the vibe is great. The vibe is really great.

CRUSADER: What do you think of South African Metal bands?

SPENCER:  Well, to tell you the truth they blew my head off, I didn't expect that. You know 
bands like Groinchurn, Sacrifist, they are really great. They are great and I think the Metal 
scene is not as bad as I was thinking. I thought at first there weren't as many Metal bands in 
South Africa, but I was really surprised you know, even though people were not crazy like in 
our country, like America. After the show you know a lot of people came to us to congratulate 
us, to say to us that they appreciate what we did which is wonderful for us, it gives us 

SENTAH: Yes, you have mentioned a point of being in American scene somewhere. Can you
 briefly compare the scene in America, where you have been studying for the last two years 
with the one that exists in South Africa, as well as Botswana.

SPENCER: Well I wouldn't say much about this because I haven't been to a lot of South African 
rock shows, but back in the USA, I see a lot of bands like solid and easy. Some bands like 
Motörhead, man people were really crazy. There was stage diving, doing all those sort. It was 
really wonderful, so I hope, I think, I mean, I don't know right now because I haven't been 
to a... probably a show where the crowd is really into it in South Africa, probably they are 
the same, so I wouldn't like to say, to compare it to the South African scene.

CRUSADER: How were the individual band members exposed to Metal in Botswana.

SPENCER: Uh, because in the beginning, I mean like in the early Eighties we were not exposed 
to some Thrash or Death Metal. I mean we came to know Metallica around 1984-85. In the first 
we sat with soft rock bands like Boston and then we got into AC/DC, Black Sabbath and Maiden 
and we got heavier, after some time we were listening to such bands like Death, Napalm Death 
you know Sepultura, all those kind of great bands, you know. So we kind of I mean both of us, 
even though we are not known to each other, had the same kind of pleasure of listening to 
rock, to Metal.

CRUSADER: What will you say your influences are, I recognised many styles in your music. 
Closing off with the AC/DC cover was also a nice touch. What kinds of Metal do you listen to.

SANTOS: Oh well, the kind of you know, like you are saying AC/DC, no it's one of the bands 
which we, you know, inspired us and really we are started to listen with AC/DC, but all in all 
we listen to a range of music, like Spencer has said, he has mentioned, I mean several. We 
were listening to kind of the same music

SENTAH: Yes, Santos you seem to have been busy with your latest stuff, you missed the 
question, let's go to Spencer.

SPENCER: Well I think the interviewer here is wrong! Santos answered right. Like Santos 
said we listen to a wide spectrum of music. We listen to soft rock, I mean if the music, if the 
song is good, it's good, I mean there's nothing you can say about it. We listen to soft 
rock. We listen to hard rock. We listen to Heavy Metal, and we go as far as Death Metal. You 
know (voice changes) "We are Death Metal", you know Death Metal. we can go as far as that. 
I mean we've got this stuff, we've got all that stuff, I'm talking about Death Metal, we got 
Boston, we got Bon Jovi, even though we don't listen to Bon Jovi quite often as we used to in 
the past, but now days we also listen to bands like Nirvana. It's so wide you know and 
definitely we want to get some influence from all this bands that I mentioned.

SENTAH: Yeah, you seem to fuse a lot of Rock and Metal, to come up with your own identity. 
Down beside your bed I can see a compilation of Grindcore, let me see what you guys are 
listening to. Well a group like Vital Remains, Paralysis, After Life, Accidental Suicide, 
Pitch Shifter, simply really grind, you guys are sick.

CRUSADER: I would describe your music as more traditional style Metal. I was told you also 
do a couple of Death style songs. What direction are you moving in and what are your plans 
for the future?

SPENCER: Each and every band that comes up tries to create or establish it's own identity. 
When we started we were more into straight forward rock, but I mean of reason being African, 
I know we have got some African music background, so we thought we could probably take our 
African beat and fuse it and try to make it heavy, you know, so I would say right now because 
we haven't released an album yet. We are in the process of creating our own identity. Probably 
in the near future people will say, when the tape is playing, oh that's Metal Orison, because 
by then we will be having our own identity that people can probably identify us with it.

SANTOS: Ok, I mean as you are saying it's like that; "Don't laugh at me". No, traditionally 
I know groups you know which have inspired us you know, our groups here locally there are 
some other groups which are really playing this kind of deep, I mean when we are into drums 
there are these traditional beat which, I mean, I like it very much. Groups like kgwanyate, 
playing it much. So, I don't know what time we once wrote to send a demo overseas, you know 
the advise was, don't copy, you know western style. Do you, I mean, your own kind of thing, so 
that's when we really sticked on to it.

SPENCER: About the plans of the band, I forgot to mention that we are planning to record in 
probably two or three months time, and I guess during this time we will do a couple of shows 
in South Africa, which will probably help us you know probably get to know some people in 
recording companies and all this stuff and probably see some studio's and stuff.

SENTAH: Yes, back to one question that I asked earlier on about this Death style and this 
traditional style Metal, do you want to tell us that you are playing this Death style, Death 
music with traditional style or how?

SPENCER: We are trying to do that, we are gonna try and do that, I mean music comes 
from the heart, you are feeling, if you feel that, I mean it's really good we'll definitely do
 it but right now, I mean we are still trying to experiment right now. I wouldn't say our music 
is Death orientated as such, we try to be heavy. I don't know whether I should say Heavy 
Metal or hard rock, but that's what we are into right now but because like I was saying, we 
have a lot of influences from other different bands. Bands like Death Metal, we are going 
to do a couple of Death Metal songs.

SENTAH: About your previous demo, can you say about when, where you recorded it and the 
situation thereafter as per that demo and the name of the studio that you are intending to do 
your recent recording. Is it going to be a demo, EP or a full length album.

SPENCER: We recorded our first demo in Mmabatho in Bophuthatswana, not in the Bop but 
part of the Bop recording studio. We do it in Heritage Studios, which is the radio station where 
the TV and radio stations are and uh, it was the first time for them to record a rock band you 
know and it wasn't well recorded as we had wanted it to be, but then it wasn't as bad as we 
thought it to be, but because the guys had never ever recorded a rock band. I mean it was 
better than nothing at all and like you had mentioned before, we are planning to record a 
full length album in two - three months time.

SENTAH: Can you briefly orientate The Crusader about the Metal scene here. The shows 
around here in Gabs (Gaberone), in Botswana. How people receive you, I mean the venues 
around here as well as the people around.

SPENCER: Well the venues around us are not that much bad, there are those that say we 
are too heavy of course. I mean as for the scene, I mean the fans, we got fans here and 
like as you know, the fans will be crazy with the music. I mean if there are fans they go 
crazy whenever we do shows, which is quite interesting, that's one reason that keeps us 
going because we don't want to disappoint them to say, man, those guys. They keep
 us going.

SENTAH: From the hot gossip late last year I hear of a group called musicians against 
exploitation, which you, Spencer, were one of the people who were in that group, can you 
briefly tell The Crusader what was the group about.

SPENCER: Well there are a lot of promoters here in our local scene here, who are trying 
to take a bunch of musicians. They go around saying they want to promote local musicians 
and then they take all the money and pay the musicians peanuts. So that was all about the 

CRUSADER: Do you have anything further to add for the Metalheads of the world?

SPENCER: Keep rocking, keep rocking, the Metalheads of the world. I mean that will help 
us to keep going

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