In the late '80s to early '90s, Florida's music landscape was ravaged by a brutal bulldozer known as grindcore. Inspired by death metal, thrash, and classic hardcore, and driven by the DIY ethos of punk rock, groups emerged like locusts. They played faster than everyone else and blasted the world with 30-second sonic assaults.
Carrying the napalm torch once held by Florida trailblazers Assück and Disney Violence, Miami's Maruta continues to uphold the Sunshine State's legacy of brutality.
The crew has taken a bit of a black sabbatical, but this Thursday Maruta returns to Churchill's for the first time in over a year.
The show promises to be an international showcase of evil music: Singapore's Wormrot, Ecuador's Asfixia, and California's Phobia are also representing team grindcore. Thrash warriors the Panix and doom metal champions Consular add a little bit of hometown variety to the bill, without watering down the heavy assault.
Crossfade caught up with Maruta vocalist Mitchell Luna to find out where Maruta's been and what to expect from Thursday's bombastic show.
New Times: When was the last Maruta show?
Luna: Our last show was in July of 2009 after an Eastcoast/Midwest tour we did with Rotten Sound, Misery Index, and Crowpath. It was at home base: Churchill's.
What have you guys been up during the time off?
The main reason we have had so much time off is that we lost our original drummer last year. He left to join Trivium and pursue a career in more commercial music. I can't blame the guy, because Maruta has never been the type of band that makes any money at all. In the time off, we acquired a new drummer, Danny Morris and a bass player, Mauro Cordoba. We were a bass-less three piece beforehand. It actually ended up working out for the best.
I heard you guys are working on a new record, how's It coming along?
The new record is already done! We recorded it at Mana Studios in St. Petersburg, Florida, with Brian Elliot. It was cool recording there, because that's a studio that normally records and works with more polished and produced sounding Death Metal bands, like Cannibal Corpse, Hate Eternal, and Nile. So they were stoked to work with a band with a more raw and natural approach to things. We didn't use excessive drum triggers or tons of overlaying vocals or anything like that.
Willowtip will be putting out the new record early 2011 in the US on both CD and vinyl. Candlelight will be releasing it in Europe in early 2011 on CD.
How did you guys hook up with Wormrot for this Florida tour?
They simply emailed me because I book shows down in Miami every once in a blue moon. Also, the fact that they are touring with Phobia, which are good friends of ours -- we toured with them in 2008 -- didn't hurt. What's great about the grindcore scene is that everyone helps each other out.
Florida has a rich history of brutal bands, who's been the most influential?
I'd say as far as metal or grindcore, my favorite Florida band is Assuck.
How would you describe your music to someone's mom?
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It's loud, really fast. It sounds pissed, and it probably won't make any sense to her.
Your performances are extremely energetic and intense. How do you get in that mindset?
What's funny is that I am kind of always in that mindset. Playing this sort of music levels me out. I need that outlet in order to function properly on a day-to-day basis. I live and breathe grindcore. It's my favorite thing in the whole world. I go to sleep with imaginary blast beats in my head. I am not an angry or aggressive dude or anything. I just love the intensity and emotion.
Maruta opens for Wormrot with Phobia, The Panix, Consular and Asfixia. Thursday, September 24. Churchill's Pub, 5501 NE Second Ave., Miami. churchillspub.com.