|No Limits is a band which comes
from Slovenia and punk/hardcore is nowadays a worldwide movement and that
shows No Limits which really plays good punk/hardcore...here the interview
done in januray-2015.
Please tell me a little bit history of the group?
-I formed the band along with Matjaz (the drummer) at the end of 1990 when he returned from the military service (which was obligatory at the time in Yugoslavia). We had two guitar players at the beggining, Valko and Bostjan (Matjaz's younger brother) and Pasko on bass, which was Matjaz's band mate in the previous band he played. We played our first gig on 30th of April 1991 … at the end of that year Valko was out and we continue as a four piece band. In 1993 we released a demo tape »Our Little Wooden House«. In autumn 1994 Pasko left and Evgen take his place. In the next year we had a troubled time, cause first Bostjan had to do a one year military service and not long later also Evgen had to do his year, so we didn't have a lot of rehearshals and concerts in those years. In 1998 we had the opportunity to play with Ratos De Porao in our home town, so I've think to myself that we should have some merch ( and we didn't have any at the time except the demo tape which was made by demand, it means I recorded them on the tapes at my home and make the covers) and I decided to put out a live tape. I decided that also because we had some songs that we didn't play anymore and I didn't wan't them to disappeared. So I collect a various live recordings we've done from 1992 to 1997 and put them on a tape, the resoult was a one hour long »Jurassic Punk«. Instead of payment for that gig with RDP, the club offered us to record three songs for free (those songs were meant to end up on a compilation cd, which the club never released). We recorded those three songs and at the end of the millenium I arranged a free recording session in the town's radio station. After these recordings Evgen left and we were without a bass player in time Pasko came back and helped us recording the rest of the songs for the first official studio cd »www.borba.non-stop« which came out in march 2003. In 2005 Bostjan left which was really a heavy blow for us, cause he did mostly all the riffs in our songs. We found a young guitarist Konki, he was studying in our town so he joined us and stayed for a little bit longer than one year. In 2006 Bostjan came back and for a few months we were a five piece band again. In that time Pasko was out again and Evgen came back again. We continued till the end of 2009 when Evgen decided to left again. We started 2010 with a new bass player Dexter. At that time we had alredy more than ten songs we wanted to record, we did another one with Dexter and then we started recording. In 2013 we released a new album »Hardcore« which contains songs from the second decade of the band, »www.borba.non-stop« contains songs from the first decade. And so here we are in 2015.
Please tell me a little about every member in the group right now, age, family, work, interests and something bad about everyone? Have you been in any other punkbands before?
-Enco (pronounce Enzo) I'm the singer and the oldest in the band ;) I'll turn 47 this year … I work as an autoelectrician, in years I've also conduct two radio shows about metal, punk, hardcore music, I did that for 12 years, before that I had also a small part on TV show, even before that I run a short lived fanzine »Verbal Razors« I also worked parttime in a hi-fi, record shop for a year. I'm not married but I'm in releationship for 20 years and i have a son that will turn 5 in a week. My biggest interest is music, I like movies and recently I discover a world of videogames (which I never played before) and I enjoy playin' action adventure games on my PS3 … that is maybe a bad thing? And too much drinkin' it's my worst habbit number one ;)
Matjaz is the drummer, he will turn 46. He is also in releationship for more than 20 years,his partner Jana, she was the founding member and the driving force in Fregatura (a female punk band from here, they don't exist anymore). Has two sons. He work as a custom officer. Before No Limits he played in Salem, the first slovenian thrash metal band. He is also a president of a sailing club in Izola (his hometown) and that's probably his worst habbit, cause he spends too much time in that club and he has constantly tons of things runnin' thru his mind.
Bostjan - the guitar player and the riff master will turn 41. He is still single, used to play football, works in the port of Koper for a private company, can't tell you exactly his job, but it has to do something with the control of the speciments of the goods that are coming in the port. Like me, his worst habbit is drinking ;) When he was 15 he played in the short lived band Radical Vomitator. That trio was the first noise band in Slovenia.
Dexter (real name Marko) is the youngest in the band, he will turn 32. He's in a relationship for 15 years, I think, no kids. He is the bass player for Human Host Body which is his first band. He joined us, cause I asked him, at the time he already played 6 years with HHB. He works with his father, they are fishermans. His worst habbit … too many bands at the same time, now he plays also in a stoner band Omega Son.
You have listened a lot to older stuff like old American hardcore ? Am I right? Favorites from the past?
-I listen a lot of music, I mean really lot. And I'm not talkin' only about hardcore and punk. In fact I started with metal and than discovered hardcore. But if we talkin' about hardcore, then yes, I prefer old school. In fact the first hearing of hardcore music I had, was on an italian radioshow back in the 80's and they spined Bad Brains, Bad Religion, Minor Threat, Unity, Toxic Reasons … My favorites in american hardcore would be Dead Kennedys, Minor Threat,DRI, Suicidal Tendencies, Gang Green, Agnostic Front, SOIA, Gorilla Biscuits, Bad Brains, Cro Mags, Crumbsuckers, Voodoo Glow Skulls, …I answer only with american hardcore bands, because I thought that's what the question stands for, I love also european oldschool hardcore like Inferno, Bloody Riot, GBH, The Exploited, Oi Polloi, Dissafect, Negazione...
No Limits, are you satisfied with the name? How did it came up? Which is the best bandname you know?
-Hell yeah. But I discovered that there are many bands around the world with that name. Anyway we're not gonna change it, cause we have it since 1991. At the very beggining we were Mental Affliction , but due to misunderstanding of many people ( Metal insted of Mental )we decided to change it at the end of 1991. We had a vote and the name No Limits won. The name suited as perfect, cause we played a mixture of thrash metal, hardcore, rap, punk, funky …. I don't have a best bandname, never thought about that ;)
What´s the best thing with playing live?
-Definetely meeting a lot of different people, places, culture … then there is fact of the energy which is always much higher than in studio. Also there is no faking, people can see who you really are.
And where is best to play?
-For me, the best places are where everything is running smooth as agreed before. Where are plenty of good people that enjoy the music. Where the PA is good and I can actaully hear what I'm singing on the stage (good monitoring). And if we sell some merch it's great, cause usually the money we get is small we barelly cover the expensives. If there is some good food, drink and clean sleeping place, even better.
How is it to play this sort of music in Slovenia?
-Don't know … normal? I mean ther is no money involved, no fame … perheaps we play so many years together cause we have none of mentioned. The scene is small, but I'm glad there is a scene … of course I would like it to be bigger … but that's the situation and we're in it right now .
How would you describe your music in three words?
-Fast, aggressive and direct.
What does punk mean to you, is it only a word or is it a lifestyle?
-Both. For some is only a word and
fashion, for others it means the whole world. Some are in just for showing
themselves, some just for drinking and doin' shit around, for some is a
lifestyle like you said.For me personally … well for first I wouldn't say
I'm a punk. I listen to punk but also other styles, I am for equality but
not for anarchy … I think punk evolved from it's roots in the 70's. I don't
know if I have a right answer for your question. Punk is a music style. A
punk lifestyle … if with that you mean squating, not working, not paying
taxes, protest on every manifestation … well I'm not living that lifestyle.
How do you see on downloading, mp3 and that stuff?
-In some way is good in other way it deals a huge blow to musicians. It's ok if you download music and then discover new bands, perhaps visit their shows, buy some merch, support the scene etc. But if you're only downloading and sitting at home, then fuck off.
How is it to live in the Slovenia now? Politically?
-Well as you may now, we've been part of Yugoslavia for many years. In the summer of 1991 we get our indipendance and it was good for many reasons which I will not explain now. But sadly they (politicians) promised one thing and instead they rob the country. We went from a good social aware country to a capitalistic corrupted piece of shit. I love Slovenia, it's nature, the smallness, the hard working people etc. but the politicians and the tycoons, the backstabbing bastards, the hypocrites they are as good as dead.
Is there any good bands from Slovenia now? Is the punkscene big? How is it in your hometown?
-Yes, there are planty of good bands in Slovenia, sadly no one succed outside it's borders. But yes, there are releases that comes out every year, that are better and better and sometimes even better than some big international act. Slovenia is small, so also the scene is small. My hometown produced a vastness of really good bands in years, all very different and that's what I like most. We have a youth club MKC in which I started my alternative life as a youngling but it's going thru rough times right now, cause the city hall want it evicted … we'll see how it's gonna end up. We also have a couple of good bars where you can hear some good music.
What do you know about Sweden?
-That it's cold overthere? Ha ha, not much. Our drummer went with the family on holiday there for three weeks in 2013. He said it's beautiful, I can agree cause I saw a tones of pics he showed me. We also start to build up a tour in your country around April 2013, but unfortunatelly we had only two dates, in the very north, confirmed. It's along way to Sweden and we needed at least six or eight gigs to somehow cover the expensives, so sadly the dream wanished. But we would really like to play there someday … maybe some good people will read this and help us realizing this tour.
Have you heard any good bands from Sweden?
-In the 70's I was listening to Abba, I loved them, in the 80's I discovered Bathory and I admired Quarthon for his inovativity (if it weren't for them and Venom and Celtic Frost, there would not be black metal as we know it today) in the 90's I discovered Clawfinger, Mob 47, Driller Killer, Refused, Millencolin, Entombed and in the new millenium Opeth, Arch Enemy and The Smackdown.
Your lyrics, who does them and what influences you?
-I wrote all the lyrics except Ne Morem, which we wrote together. My major influences are everday life, politics and the shit it does to people, human nature, the truth.
Is there any subject that you never will write anything about?
-Never thought about that. We're No Limits, so I dont know if there are any boundries in the lyrics.
Politic and music, does it goes hand in hand?
-Oh yeah, look around. Where do we live, what is going around, the shit it's happening around the world, how do we treat our planet … are you satisfied with that? I don't think so. Well the politic it's the main reason for that, not to exclude the human greed. So yes, the two are walking hand in hand. Especialy in hardcore, that in my opinion it's best reflection of the world in music.
Best political band/artist?
-Oi Polloi, Dead Kennedys, Ratos De Porao, Public Enemy…
Do you think that music(lyrics and so on) can change anyones life, I mean people who listens to music?
-Of course it does. I'm 100% sure. If I wouldn't start to listen to thrash metal, hardcore and punk in the 80's I would deffinitelly not be the same person today.
You sing both in English and in Slovenian language., why both?? Which is most easy to make lyrics in? It feels like your Slovenian things are wilder, am I right?
Well, it's nice if somebody outside Slovenia understand what you're singin'bout, so English is the most common language and it's obvious we haded that way. But sometimes some lyrics just come out in Slovenian, naturaly. Mostly the most direct ones, the angriest. Slovenian language it's harder, harsher and raw, good for punk and hardcore, not so good for metal.
No label? Is it important for you to get out your records physical also?? Something new on it
-We did try in the past to find someone to put our tapes out and later the cd … but we're not that kind of people that will desperatly do anything to get a contract, or send hundreds of tapes on labels begging for … no, I just said, ok we're gonna do this alone, and that's how it ended. Ok, it would be cool to find some good distros, that could distribute our music around the globe, but that's all. We don't want to be tied to some contracts etc. We have the control over our music, lyrics, design, sound, gigs, appareal … we are we, not a product of some label. Of course it's important to put a physical record out, at least we had a proff that we did something in all these years … I regret we didn't put out more records. DIY!
-The craziest thing I remember was in Kocevje in 1993. The place was packed and when we finished the show, the people want more, so we did a bis. But they still want more, then the cops came and stopped the show but as soon as they left we started again … with no more songs, we didn't know what to play anymore, so we told that to the audience and show them a playlist, so they started yelling the numbers of the songs, we played at least five or six more songs from the list, by the numbers people yelled… oh and there was this guy who rode a bicycle naked with his underwear on his head in the place of course ;) Pretty crazy stuff
How does your audience look like? Which people do you miss on your concerts?
-Our audience is waste, a lot of different people are coming to our gigs, you wouldn't believe it. But not as many I would like ;) I miss very young people, early teenagers, cause that's when you're developing your character and music has a lot to do with that.
Please rank your five favoriterecords, five favoriteconcerts and five most important things in life?
-Van Halen – Women and Children First, Slayer – Reign in Blood, Anthrax – Among the Living, Kud Idijoti – Glupost je Neunistiva, S.O.D. – Speak English or Die
Iron Maiden in Ljubljana 1986, Murphy's Law in Izola 1994, Ratos De Porao in Koper 1998, early editions of Metal Camp in Tolmin, early editions of Beach Bum rock festival near Venice and our gig in Kocevje in 1993.
Family, music, honesty, nature, friends.
Is it boring with interviews? Is it much interviews??
-No, actually we are rarelly asked for an interview, so it's more fun than annoying ;)
Please ask the questions you never get but you want to have, ask it and answer it?
-All the frases in the song »No More Lies« starts with the letter »E«. Was that intentional, on purpose?
No, it just come out this way, but in the middle of the writing I noticed that and then I thought it would be cool if everything started with the same letter. Letter »E« as Equality, you know. And so I paid attention to that and continued on purpose.
-Just playing around. Next show is next month in Trieste (Italy) with Raw Power. Last year we were forced to cancel our show on the Exit Fest, so I hope we'll do it this year, if they still want us ;)
-Perhaps, get in better shape, write some new lyrics, get some new tattoos, put out some new design for t-shirts, calm down a little (lately I'm very nervous).
-What goes around, comes around? Don't screw with the nature?
For a good wisdom I think I had to wait another 20 and more years ;)
Something to add?
-Hope to come to Sweden one day and also some other countries. Hope the situation in the world change to better, I'm really tired to see my whole life just shitty things. Support your scene, we're not many, that's one more reason to stick together. Open your mind and listen to as many things as possible, apply that also on other things in your life. Thanks for the interview, it's been a pleasure.