|Interview by Burt Wolf with Vinny DiBianca, guitarist for VICIOUS CIRCLE.
Interview done December 24th, 2005.
VICIOUS CIRCLE HAS BEEN AROUND SINCE 1989. CAN YOU GIVE A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE
BANDS LONG CAREER IN THE METAL SCENE? ANY PREVIOUS BANDS THE MEMBERS WERE
Well, VICIOUS CIRCLE was actually formed in late 1988 by Dave Surran (drummer) & myself, right after
high school. We released our first demo in 1989. We released "CRYPTIC VOID" in 1993 on JL AMERICA
RECORDS (RIP) with our original vocalist, Brian Chicano. BC & VC parted ways shortly after the "Cryptic
Void Tour" in late 1993. We took on our 2nd vocalist, Brian Cook in late 1994 & released 2 demos with him
which were "DEMO '94" & "LIVE LONG AND SUFFER". BC #2 & VC parted ways in late 1998. We played
tons of shows all over the place & finally put out "THE ART OF AGONY" on NEOBLAST RECORDS (RIP) in
December of 2004. We are STRONGER than ever & will CRUSH all that gets in our way! That's about as brief
as I can make it. Let's see, Dave & I were in DENIAL before VC started, Mel (bassist) was in CEREBRAL
DECAY before VC & Darrell was in GRUNT before VC. We've all been in so many bands since we started
playing music, that the list would be quite long.
WHY WAS THE NAME VICIOUS CIRCLE CHOSEN AS THE BANDS NAME?
We were all sitting around after band practice one day, throwing out some ideas for a band name. Meanwhile, we
had THE THREE STOOGES on TV. Well, nothing was really nailin' it, so at the first point of silence between all
of us, Curley blurts out "Oh, its a vicious circle". We all looked at each other, laughed a bit & decided that
VICIOUS CIRCLE should be the name of the band. That's a true story.
WHO OR WHAT HAS HAD SOME INFLUENCE ON YOU GUYS IN YOUR LIFE & IN MUSIC?
I was always into the Progressive Jazz players like Al DiMeola, John Mclaughlin & Paco De Lucia, amongst
other great players like Jimmy Bruno, Allen Holdsworth, Yngwie Malmsteen, Alvin Lee, Carlos Santana & well
you get the picture. I'm totally into good musicians of all styles of music, not just Metal. You can't just listen or
be influenced by one style of music or your material will get "stale" after awhile. I played Progressive Jazz before
Metal anyway & I'm happy with the way my playing style has developed with such a wide variety of influences.
As an influence on life, I'd have to say I base my life on the way Michael Douglas based his in FALLING
DOWN. Now that's a role model!
HOW WOULD YOU BEST DESCRIBE THE STYLE & SOUND OF VICIOUS CIRCLE (FOR THOSE
FEW THAT HAVE NOT HEARD YOU)?
I'd say that we are a combination of Death Metal with Thrash Metal elements, plenty of tempo changes & brutal
YOUR NEWEST RELEASE "THAT ART OF AGONY" HAS BEEN OUT SINCE EARLY 2005. HOW
WELL HAS IT DONE FOR YOU GUYS? WHAT HAS THE RESPONSE BEEN LIKE?
We are all very happy with the way the CD came out overall & the response has been awesome from our fans &
reviewers from all over the world. That's what means the most to us, no doubt.
CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE CD COVER ART WORK A BIT FOR THIS
ALBUM & WHO DID IT?
It's basically a demented display of humanity abstract art from the twisted mind
of Mike Bohatch at "Eyes Of Chaos". It relates to the title of the CD perfectly.
WHAT IS SOME OF THE SUBJECT MATTER IN YOUR SONGS?
You have subjects venturing into insanity, inflicted acts of torture to achieve
pleasure, the evil & suffrage of everyday life, unknown prophecy, sex with
corpses, feelings of uselessness & happy stuff like that.
THE DISC WAS PUT OUT BY NEOBLAST RECORDS. HOW DID YOU
GET HOOKED UP WITH THEM? HOW HAS IT BEEN WORKING WITH
Yeah, NEOBLAST...ok, well my good friend Johnny P (former vocalist for
MORTAL DECAY) told me to check them out. He said that they were a strong
label from Canada, which they were. I sent them our CD & they signed us the
day after receiving it. Everything was going fine, until they folded out of nowhere
in March 2005. Three months after the CD was released! I wish them all well,
but it definitely screwed up our release for "THE ART OF AGONY". So, the
contract was legally voided & we purchased all the remaining inventory. You'll
only be able to find the CD on our official website & at our live
IS THERE ANY NEW MATERIAL IN THE WORKS OR AVAILABLE?
Yes, we are presently working on new material for our next release & I definitely
think it's some of our best yet. None of it is available, unless someone recorded
our live performance on 94.1 WYSP Loud And Local with Tommy Conwell on
January 30th, 2005. We played a brand new one that night called "Fear
Everything". We just finished the music that week. I didn't even have a solo
written yet, but we owed it to our fans that have been asking for some new VC.
I hope they all enjoyed it!
WHO WRITES THE MAJORITY OF THE MUSIC IN THE BAND OR IS IT
A WHOLE BAND COLLABORATION?
I write all the riffs & present them to the guys with a basic arrangement.
Dave & Mel write their parts to my riffs & we all play it to my initial
arrangement. We keep what we like & rearrange what we don't like.
When the music is finished, we turn it over to Darrell to write the lyrics.
WHY DO YOU FEEL YOU HAVE A TURN AROUND WITH SINGERS IN THE BAND? WHERE DID
YOU FIND YOUR NEW SINGER?
It was nothing more than musical differences...and maybe a few SMALL personal issues, but that is to be
beginning of VC, when he was in THANATOPSIS. He stepped up to the plate, quit GRUNT & joined the band
when we needed a vocalist. It's been great ever since.
AFTER ALL THESE YEARS, THERE HAS TO BE SOME COOL, FUNNY OR INTERESTING BAND
STORIES YOU COULD SHARE WITH US?
Hell yeah! There's way too many to choose from, but there is one that I would like to share with you...we played
a club called THE GALAXY (rip) in Jersey way back in the day. So we're on stage & a HUGE mosh pit breaks
out, well THE GALAXY was known to house all the Glam "Hair" bands & were not used to this at all. So, the
only bouncer (yes, there was only one) came out & tried to stop everyone & got the shit kicked out of him, what
a bloody mess he was. Now the owner of the club came out, like he had the respect of the raging crowd or
something & he got beat down as well! At that point, the sound man proceeded to shut us down & call in the
cops to detain the situation. They all came in with K9 units & escorted us out & closed the club down for awhile.
Ah, what a night to remember!
I HAVE FOLLOWED YOU GUYS WAY BACK TO WHEN YOUR "FIST OF GOD" DEMO CAME OUT
& BACK WHEN YOU USED TO PLAY AT THE CELLBLOCK (RIP) ALL THE TIME. HOW DO YOU
FEEL THE BAND HAS CHANGED SINCE THOSE DAYS TILL NOW?
We're still basically the same, but we definitely matured musically over the years.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE PLACES YOU'VE PLAYED OVER THE YEARS. WHO ARE
SOME OF THE BANDS YOU'VE SHARED THE STAGE WITH?
THE TROC was always a cool venue, THE CELLBLOCK, THE SPORTS PALACE, THE RAT, CBGB'S,
BB KING'S, BARONS, MOBY DICK'S...there really was a lot of great places to play & we are glad that we
had the chance to play them all. Wow, we played with tons of great bands too, like DEATH, MORBID ANGEL,
SUFFOCATION, ACID BATH, NAPALM DEATH, MACHINE HEAD, OVERKILL, VADER, FEAR
FACTORY, ENTOMBED, RIPPING CORPSE, DRI, MURPHY'S LAW, DISINCARNATE, GRAVE,
REVENANT, MORTAL DECAY, DEICIDE, BOLT THROWER, BENEDICTION, CANNIBAL CORPSE,
NUCLEAR ASSAULT, SIX FEET UNDER, OBITUARY, BRUTAL TRUTH & the list goes on, man. We've
been very fortunate to share the stage with all of the bands that we have over the years.
ARE YOU INTO ANY OTHER STYLES OF MUSIC BESIDES WHAT YOU PLAY IN THE BAND? WHO
ARE SOME OF THE BANDS YOU HAVE CURRENTLY BEEN LISTENING TO?
Definitely, like I said earlier, I find something enjoyable in almost every style of music out there...as long as the
musicians are talented, I'm good to go. I've been listening to some of the older stuff recently like PESTILENCE,
POSSESSED, THE CRUMBSUCKERS, CORONER & some MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA & DIXIE
DREGGS. Been listening to some ICP (INSANE CLOWN POSSE) too...love those wicked clowns!!!
WHAT DO THE MEMBERS OF THE BAND DO WHEN
NOT DOING ANY WORK FOR THE BAND? JOBS,
Well, I'm a mechanical/proposal engineering manager believe it
or not! Darrell is an IT specialist, Dave is like the best
drywall/taper in Jersey & Mel installs window treatments.
WHAT IS ONE THING PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED
TO FIND OUT ABOUT YOU?
That I'm really an Incubus trapped in a human's body!!!
WHAT WAS THE FIRST ALBUM YOU REMEMBER BUYING? WHAT WAS THE FIRST CONCERT
YOU EVER WENT TO?
The first album that I remember buying was ELVIS' "GOLDEN HITS" & the first concert that I went to was
DIO'S "HOLY DIVER TOUR" in 1982!
WHAT DO YOU FEEL IS THE BEST & WORST PART ABOUT BEING IN A BAND?
The best part about being in a band is playing music that YOU wrote & all of the amazing responses from the
fans of YOUR music. The worst part about being in a band is having 2 record labels fold on you while you just
released a new CD through them!!!
WHAT CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE NEXT FROM VICIOUS CIRCLE?
Hopefully seeing "THE ART OF AGONY" re-released on a reputable label with a new CD release to follow
WHAT WERE YOU DOING BEFORE THIS INTERVIEW? WHAT WILL YOU BE DOING NOW THAT
Working & back to working! hahaha
THANX A LOT FOR ANSWERING THIS INTERVIEW. IF YOU HAVE ANYTHING ELSE YOU'D LIKE
TO ADD TO FINISH OFF FEEL FREE TO DO SO!
Well first off Burt, I'd like to thank you & BEOWOLF PRODUCTIONS for this interview! I had a BLAST!
Also, be sure to check us out for all news & show updates & all VC merchandise at our official sites. Thank you
all for your support!